During an average week in Houston, 11 fatal car accidents occur and 12 people are killed.
Houston is the most populous city in the state of Texas. This may be why there are so many car accidents. According to the Texas Department of Transportation (DOT), there were 107,215 accidents in Harris County in 2018. Meanwhile, in the city of Houston, the number of reported accidents was 67,241. There were more fatalities (245) and more disabling injury accidents (1,304) in Houston than any other city in the state.
It’s clear that traffic accidents in Houston can result in serious injuries. Here are answers to frequently asked questions about Houston car accidents.
Each car accident case is unique, and there are a number of factors to consider in a potential settlement.
Expert Houston car accident lawyer Mario Davila knows how to navigate a party's motivation to settle and negotiate the compensation amount after a car accident. This will depend on many factors in the case, including: the severity of the injuries, the medical expenses, the loss of past and future wages, the limits of insurance coverage, and the type of available evidence in the car accident.
Another key element in a settlement is whether the victim was at fault in causing the accident.
Mario Davila Law Firm in Houston works on a contingency fee basis. Under this payment scheme, our law firm doesn’t charge any upfront fees, but will get paid a percentage of the compensation from the settlement or trial. If a car accident victim doesn’t receive any money, our law firm doesn’t charge any fees. However, a client may be responsible for expenses, such as court filing fees and expert witness fees.
Greater Houston is comprised of Harris County and seven adjacent counties.
Many motor vehicle accidents in the metropolitan area occur on interstates that run through and around the city (I-45, I-10, I-69 and I-610); U.S. Routes 290 and 59 (US 290 and US 59); Texas State Highways 288, 249 and 6 (SH 288, SH 249, SH 6) and Beltway 8 (BW8); Farm to Market 1960 and 1093 (FM 1960 and FM 1093); and Veterans Memorial Drive.
An investigation of Houston car accidents statistics from 2011 to 2018 demonstrated that Interstate 45 (I-45) is the second most dangerous highway in the entire country. I-45 averaged about 56.5 fatal crashes every 100 miles. In fact, Houston's dangerous stretch of I-45 was the scene of 51 fatal crashes in 2018.
In addition, drunk driving fatalities on I-45 in Houston have one of the highest rates in the United States. Research showed that there were approximately 17.5 drunk driving fatalities per 100 miles. The Houston portion of I-10 ranked fourth in the country on that list, with 12.6 fatalities per 100 miles.
Houston car accident attorneys at Mario Davila Law Firm report there are several types of car accidents that commonly occur, including:
This occurs when two cars in close proximity crash into each other.
This happens when two cars traveling in opposite directions collide with one another.
These accidents occur when at least three vehicles collide with each other. Often, this involves a series of rear-end accidents (a “chain reaction”), initiated by the force of the original collision.
Also called "T-bone" or "side crashes," they occur when one side of the vehicle is impacted. It’s usually caused by one vehicle striking the side of another at a 90-degree angle.
This occurs when both vehicles are parallel to each other, but one hits or scrapes the side of the other while passing by.
This accident happens when a driver loses control of their vehicle and runs off the road, or when a motorist drives in a risky manner at high speeds.
These accidents may be caused by bad weather conditions or perhaps when drivers swerve to avoid running over an animal or debris on the road.
There are several reasons or factors that can contribute to a car accident in Houston. Here are some of the main causes below:
In Texas, there were more than 1,800 car accidents involving drivers under the influence of drugs, causing more than 200 deaths.
Distracted drivers caused 22 fatalities in 2018. There were more than 8,500 reported crashes where some type of distraction was the reason behind the accident, such as talking and texting on the phone, using a GPS, adjusting music or controls, applying makeup, conversing with passengers, checking on children, driving with pets, or simply being distracted and not operating the vehicle attentively.
Speeding and the inability to control a vehicle is the cause of numerous fatalities each year in Texas. In 2018, there were more than 105,000 motor vehicle crashes as a result of speeding. Of these, 284 were fatal.
An improper lane change occurs when a motorist moves from their lane into another lane without signaling. This can endanger other motorists. In 2018, there were 31,225 car crashes and 42 fatalities statewide due to this type of driving.
There were more than 21,100 car crashes attributed to drivers following the vehicle in front of them too closely, resulting in 10 fatalities.
An injured driver or passenger in Texas can file an insurance claim or lawsuit against the at-fault driver for injuries and damages sustained in the accident. If a driver is determined to be at fault, they will be responsible for paying the victim's damages.
Keep in mind that Texas accident law utilizes "modified comparative negligence," which states that a car accident victim’s damages are barred or reduced based on their degree of fault.
There are three types of damages that can be recovered in the event of a car accident. One is economic damages. These are the victim's "out-of-pocket expenses" incurred due to the car accident. Economic damages include the cost of vehicle repairs, lost wages due to the accident, loss of earning capacity and any future medical expenses.
In addition, a Houston car accident victim may also recover non-economic damages for their injuries. These include permanent disability and disfigurement, loss of consortium and enjoyment of life, loss of society and companionship, mental anguish, and pain and suffering.
Finally, although it’s quite unusual, an expert Houston car accident attorney like Mario Davila, may be able to help you get exemplary (also called "punitive") damages if the injuries were caused by malice, omission or gross negligence by the other driver.
In Texas, a party injured in a car accident has only two years to file a personal injury lawsuit from the date of the accident.
If you were seriously injured in a car accident, you need to understand your legal options. Get a skilled and experienced attorney at Mario Davila to protect your rights and help guide you through this legal process.
If you or a family member were seriously injured in a car accident, get in touch with our experienced Houston car accident lawyers at Mario Davila Law Firm.
Contact our Houston law firm as soon as possible. We’ll evaluate your case for free, so call us today.