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What You Should Know About Head-on Collisions in Atlanta

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It is easy to feel overwhelmed if you’re in Georgia trying to figure out what to do next after a car accident. No one expects to be hit by another vehicle when just driving to work or picking up groceries. But you don’t have to tackle the legal aspects of your case on your own. Our Georgia personal injury and accident attorneys can help.

We work to keep our clients’ best interests at heart throughout the entire legal process – from investigation and litigation to negotiation and trial – our Atlanta car accident lawyer has what it takes to fight for your rights and recover the compensation you deserve. Call the CEO Lawyer Personal Injury Law Firm (833) 254-2923 to schedule a free consultation so we can get started immediately to protect your rights.

A head-on collision has occurred when both vehicles are going in the same direction. Head-on collisions can be devastating and lead to extensive injuries, fatalities, and damage to both cars involved. Under normal driving conditions, a driver will pay attention to their side mirrors and blind spots to avoid a head-on collision. If a driver crosses over lanes without checking these areas, they may cause a head-on collision.

Many factors can play into the most common type of car crash’s likelihood of a head-on collision occurring. From speeding to distraction to improper lane use, anything that causes a driver not to use caution can lead to this kind of accident.

Causes of Head-on Collisions

Drivers who end up heading the wrong way down a busy highway typically do so due to either distraction, loss of awareness, or flawed decision-making. In simpler terms, someone followed the default route after going through a complex intersection or drove off course to avoid construction. Below are some common causes of head-on collisions:

Speeding

High-speed car crashes are the deadliest of all vehicular accidents. Most states have set a speed limit of 60 to 70 mph for cars, yet many vehicles can drive up to 100 mph. When vehicles are moving at this high rate of speed, one slight mistake can cause tragic consequences. While unhealthy habits such as driving impaired are driving factors to automobile accidents, speeding contributes to tens of thousands of fatal accident deaths each year.

Distracted Driving

A distracted driver is a driver with divided attention. Distracted driving is a leading cause of head-on collisions in Georgia and the United States. Most distracted driving accidents occur because people talk on their cell phones or text while driving.

Some drivers try to do too many things at once while driving, such as eating food while driving, applying makeup, and even reading books. The law in Georgia prohibits using handheld cell phones while driving. Hands-free devices are permitted if they are used to communicate with emergency services or with driver assistance systems that perform specific tasks with the aid of GPS.

Inclement Weather

Unfortunately, when unexpected weather occurs, it can be hazardous to drive. Even minor reductions in visibility and road conditions can cause motorists to lose their vehicle’s control and crash into another car or off the road. Head-on collisions caused by poor weather conditions often result in catastrophic injuries and death.

The rain can cause the streets to become slippery and wet, making it harder for vehicles to maintain traction on the roadway. In snowy conditions, the roads may accumulate a layer of snow that can cover hazards that cause a motorist to lose control. Slushy roads with ice on them can result in a car sliding out of control and into another vehicle.

Drunk Driving

Georgia has unique rural and suburban roads that lack streetlights. Combine this with many bars, restaurants, and clubs in the metro Atlanta area, and you have a recipe for disaster. The DOT has admitted that impaired driving is a problem in Georgia and could be contributing to a recent increase in crashes, including head-on collisions.

Alcohol affects the central nervous system, reducing driving awareness. The impairment can lead to fatal errors, such as crossing double yellow lines, rear-ending another vehicle, or straying into oncoming traffic without realizing it. When these incidents occur at high speeds or collide with other objects, they can be life-threatening.

Injuries Resulting From Head-On Collisions

Injury from head on-collisions does tend to be more severe due to speed and the abruptness of the collision. Factors that affect the severity of a head-on collision are vehicle speeds, distance from impact, types of vehicles, drugs/alcohol involved, seat belt usage, kind of crashing (front end contact or steering wheel contact), airbag deployment, and a host of other things. Following injuries are caused by head-on collisions:

  • A whiplash injury is a neck sprain caused by a sudden jolt with the head and neck in a forward position. Whiplash occurs when your vehicle stops suddenly, and your body continues to move forward while your head stays still. The result is an abrupt pull on your neck muscles and ligaments. A whiplash injury can cause headaches, dizziness, neck pain, shoulder pain, numbness in the arms or hands, elbow pain, low back pain, knee pain, or pain in certain parts of the face.
  • In a head-on collision, vehicle occupants in the direct path of the vehicle’s front end have a high risk of sustaining a head injury. The driver and passengers up to their waist can be thrust forward—a position in which the seatbelt is likely to injure them. A head injury can be defined as a blow to the head that cuts the soft tissue or compresses the brain.
  • When a head-on collision occurs, the force exerted on the spine is tremendous. The sudden jolt can cause severe damage to any of these areas, sometimes resulting in complete or partial paralysis. Spinal injuries can range from mild to severe and vary from bruising of the spinal column to fierce tears in the tendons or ligaments surrounding it.

Determining the Fault in a Head-On Crash

In a head-on crash, the liability of the accident is not easily determined. Often what may seem to be a clear-cut case is not that easy when it comes to the legal implications of the accident. Some laws and regulations can complicate a head-on collision case.

While driving in Georgia, every driver must observe the safety precautions outlined by law. Should a driver disregard such laws enacted for their benefit and that of other motorists and pedestrians, they may be held liable for any damages and injuries sustained by another as a result.

No matter which direction you are traveling on a two-way paved road, it is your duty to stay in your lane. This means that if you are driving north on Highway 150, you must remain on the left-hand side of the road. It doesn’t matter if there are ditches or shoulders to the right of you, you should always stay in your lane.

Exceptions to this rule include passing other vehicles or crossing the center line if necessary to avoid an obstacle like a stalled car or large pothole. Doing otherwise is considered negligent and can result in severe consequences such as head-on collisions with oncoming traffic.

Whether one of the drivers crossed the center line or hit his brakes, determining liability for a head-on collision in Georgia is pretty straightforward.  The driver liable for a head-on collision is the one that was in the wrong when it comes to their direction of travel.

In Georgia, head-on collisions can leave you with complicated injuries and extensive property damage. It would be easy for the drivers in these accidents to blame each other even if they were both partially to blame. How much fault should be assigned in such a crash will depend on the particular circumstances surrounding the impact. An experienced Georgia car accident lawyer can help you recover financial damages for your injuries and mitigate your expenses by placing liability on the other driver.

How can a Personal Injury Attorney Help?

For individuals who have been harmed in a car accident, dealing with the wreck’s aftermath can be a frustrating and stressful time. Worse yet is the pain and difficulty associated with not working, going through costly medical procedures, and dealing with many other car accident-related issues.

The people of Atlanta always come first at Ali Awad. Our reputation as a top personal injury law firm in Georgia is built on our commitment to serving residents and communities throughout the state. The high speeds from a head-on collision can tear through your body, bruising muscles and breaking bones. Our attorneys will provide you with the level of legal representation you need to help secure the compensation you deserve.

We are proud to serve clients from all over Georgia, from Columbus to Savannah and everywhere in between. To learn more about our firm and how we can help you, call us today at (833) 254-2923.

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