As we all know, automobile crashes have become an almost common occurrence in Scottsdale, which is not terribly surprising given the growing population and the influx of traffic entering the city from the Loop 101/Pima Freeway. An incident late last month is pretty typical: two cars collided near Frank Lloyd Wright Boulevard and Raintree Drive, less than a block from our Scottsdale office. One of the victims had to be extricated from her car by firefighters, according to a Scottsdale Fire Department spokeswoman. The victim was taken to Scottsdale Healthcare Osborn's trauma center with unknown injuries. Two other victims were admitted to Scottsdale Healthcare Shea with minor injuries. At last report, officials were still "investigating the cause of the accident."
We confess don't know "the cause" of the collision, either; but one thing is virtually certain: one or both of the drivers was negligent. One or both of them "failed to use reasonable care" and "act as a reasonably careful person would act under the circumstances." This is the basic test of whether or not an act or omission is "negligent." Another simple way to determine negligence is whether or not an act or failure to act "needlessly endangers" another person. A "reasonably careful person" does not expose another to needless danger. If that person chooses to act in a manner that endangers another person, when a safer means of accomplishing the same thing exists, that is negligence.
When anyone foregos the safe method and elects a less-safe approach, it is negligence. Some easy examples: If a driver texts while driving instead of giving his full attention to his driving, he is negligent. If a driver intending to turn left enters an intersection on a yellow light and hits an oncoming vehicle, when he could easily have stopped for the light, he is negligent. Speeding, unsafe lane changes, driving with no headlights, driving under the influence, etc., are all examples of conscious choices that were
less safe than the choices a "reasonably careful" person would have made. They are, therefore, all examples of negligence.
The discussion above involves motor vehicle accidents; but the same reasoning applies to virtually any incident in which a negligent and unsafe choice causes the injury or wrongful death of another person. Perhaps you have been involved in such an incident and sustained serious physical injuries and emotional suffering. You likely incurred large hospital, doctor and other medical bills. Maybe you missed work and lost income and wages. Perhaps you have sustained permanent disabilities, scarring, or even worse. All because of someone else's negligent or reckless conduct. If so, and provided the incident was relatively recent and you were not at fault, then you are probably entitled to bring a claim against the party responsible for your injuries and economic losses.
If your injuries are serious, or if the victim of the negligence was a family member who died as a result, you should not attempt to pursue such a serious claim without the assistance of an experienced Scottsdale personal injury lawyer who can get you the money you deserve for your pain, suffering and other economic consequences of the wrongful conduct.
The Watkin Law Office, PC is an Arizona personal injury and wrongful death law firm with offices in Scottsdale and Phoenix; it represents injured clients and their families throughout Maricopa County, including Gilbert, Glendale, Tempe, Mesa and Chandler. Request a
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