Kitchener Accident injury lawyer takes a look at preventing accidents
- March 20, 2015
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I have a poster in my office that was developed a number of years ago as part of our bike helmets for kids initiative (Lidz on Kidz) that has the caption “Accidents Don’t Just Happen” call it what is “collision” etc. What better time than January to take the time to assess and prepare for the risks in our own every day lives. As much as I have written about the pitfalls of insurance I can assure you that most of my clients just wish they could turn back the clock in time so that the “accident” didn’t happen in the first place.
A large part of our work at Morell Kelly (a Kitchener Accident injury lawyer) revolves around defeating the idea that our client’s were injured in “accidents” because the crux of obtaining compensation for a car accident victim is identifying from a civil perspective how the at fault driver was at fault or negligent. However, from a practical perspective in hindsight there are often things both drivers could have done differently that might have prevented the so called accident from happening in the first place.
January is a good time to look at all aspects of our life with a view to preventing “accidents” from turning our lives upside down. The first obvious place to start is our own health. If we are healthy we are less vulnerable to injuries from accidents and in the event we are injured in an accident we are more likely to fully heal. We should each of us take the time to treat and document our own health issues as the claimant’s pre-accident health is a key factor relevant to the issue of compensation for pain and suffering. Keeping in mind that in most cases liability (who is at fault for the accident) is easily ascertained the focus will be on quantifying the damages of the at fault driver. There is of course a human tendency to attribute all of one’s health issues to a traumatic motor vehicle collision but the question will become to what extent is that borne out in the pre-accident medical records. Of course if pre-accident complaints are made worse this is a factor to be considered in terms of compensation and can objectively only be established by pre-accident clinical notes and records.
The other logical place to look at risk prevention is by examining our own driving activities. Not only should we look at our own habits but also we should look at our car to make sure it is properly maintained and there are no visual obstructions. We once examined a driver who struck a child crossing the road to learn that his speedometer was covered in post it notes outlining jobs he needed to complete! In virtually every case where we examine an at fault driver we learn that something related to their driving activities was the proximate cause of the crash. Hence the initiative by the Ontario government to crack down on distracted while everyone is different in terms of what level of distraction they can tolerate and still drive effectively texting and cell phone use is against the law while operating a motor vehicle. Quite likely many of us have been guilty of this offense but we should take the time to remember we are modelling these behaviors for our children who down the road might be driving our very own cars!
If one is able to it might be worthwhile to consider not driving at busier times of the day, in the dark or in bad weather and to gear your driving activities to your own health. While an ounce of prevention can go a long way it is important to remember there is no such thing as an “accident” and many unpleasant events are preventable with common sense.
If you’ve been hurt in an automobile accident, visit Morell Kelly Accident Injury Lawyers for a no obligation assessment.
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