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Who Is at Fault in a Multi-Car Crash?

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Posted on November 3, 2023

Multi-car crashes are complex events often leading to confusion, significant damage, and unfortunately, injuries. These incidents can occur due to a variety of reasons, ranging from poor weather conditions to distracted driving

In these scenarios, determining who is at fault is crucial for insurance claims and potential legal action. Although this process can be complex on your own, a St. George car accident lawyer can conduct an in-depth investigation into your accident on your behalf so that you can properly identify the liable party.

Determining Liability in a Utah Car Accident

Because Utah is a fault car accident state, the driver who caused the accident is generally responsible for the damages and injuries that result. This means that the victims can file a claim against the at-fault driver’s insurance policy or pursue a lawsuit against him or her in civil court

In many accidents that only involve one or two vehicles, identifying the at-fault party is a relatively straightforward process. Determining liability, however, can be challenging in multi-car accidents, as multiple drivers could share the responsibility.

Fault in a Multi-Car Crash Depends on the Primary Cause

In a multi-car crash, fault is typically assigned to the driver who initiated the sequence of events leading to the accident. For instance, if Driver A rear-ends Driver B due to distraction, causing Driver B to hit Driver C, Driver A is usually at fault

In another scenario, if Driver B suddenly stops without reason, causing Driver A to hit them and then Driver C to collide with Driver A, Driver B might bear the majority of the fault. Conversely, if Driver C is driving too closely behind and cannot stop in time, hitting Driver A into Driver B, then Driver C would likely be considered at fault.

Enlist a Car Accident Attorney to Help Determine Liability

Determining fault in multi-car accidents requires thorough investigation and analysis. However, while you are recovering from injuries, financial loss, and other damages, carrying out this investigation alone can be extremely difficult. In these situations, you need a car accident lawyer on your side.

A car accident attorney can leverage several strategies and resources to ascertain liability, making them a valuable asset in your case. These may include:

  • Reading police reports: These reports often contain valuable information, including the officer’s assessment of the accident, which can be pivotal in establishing fault.
  • Utilizing forensic analysis: Forensic experts can analyze skid marks, vehicle damages, and other physical evidence to reconstruct the accident and establish a timeline of events.
  • Analyzing video footage: Surveillance cameras and dash cams may capture the accident, providing clear evidence of what happened and who is responsible.
  • Consulting technical experts: Specialists in automotive mechanics can determine if vehicle failures contributed to the accident.
  • Speaking to eyewitnesses: Eyewitness accounts can provide crucial insights into how the accident occurred and help identify the party at fault.
  • Reconstructing the collision: Lawyers can engage specialists and crash experts to recreate the accident based on available evidence. This reconstruction can be crucial in understanding the sequence of events and determining liability.
  • Leveraging technology: Modern technology, including GPS data and vehicle telematics, can provide insights into the drivers’ behavior before the crash.

In multi-car crashes, a thorough investigation is key to determining fault, and having a lawyer by your side can make a significant difference in the outcome of your claim. As soon as possible following your accident, contact a personal injury attorney in St. George to initiate the investigation and take your first steps toward justice.