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Recent Pennsylvania car accidents: 2 killed in crash

Pennsylvania Car Crash Legal Recourse

Pennsylvania is not among the largest states in the U.S., but it is the ninth most densely populated state. In its cities, rural areas, and suburban towns, tens of thousands of vehicle crashes happen on Pennsylvania roads every year. These accidents lead to injuries and deaths that, tragically, could have been prevented.

It’s an upending experience to be suffering from injuries or the loss of a family member from a car crash. And oftentimes, car insurance companies lowball injured claimants, offering much less than they need and deserve. After seeking medical care, the best thing to do to seek maximum compensation is to speak with an experienced Pennsylvania car crash attorney.

Below are some helpful facts about Pennsylvania car accidents. If you or your loved one was harmed in a crash, we welcome you to contact the experienced attorneys at Gay Chacker & Ginsburg at (215) 567-7955.

Injuries and Deaths in Pennsylvania Car Accidents

People traveled more than 102 billion vehicle-miles in Pennsylvania in 2019, according to the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation’s (PennDOT). annual report. There were 125,267 traffic crashes in the state that same year, equating to about 14 every hour. Those crashes killed 1,059 people and injured more than 76,000.

The good news is that the 2019 fatality rate was the lowest ever recorded in Pennsylvania since 1935. However, that fact is not comforting for the families of those who died.

Common Types of Pennsylvania Car Accidents

Many different types of crashes occur in Pennsylvania, but some are much more common than others. The most common cause of a Pennsylvania car crash involves one vehicle hitting a fixed object such as a tree or guide rail. Other common types of PA vehicle crashes include:

  • Angled crash
  • Rear-end crash
  • Sideswipe
  • Hit a pedestrian
  • Head-on collision
  • Crash while backing up

Crashes involving pedestrians occur much less often than hitting a fixed object, but they resulted in the third-highest number of traffic deaths in 2019.

Pennsylvania Car Crash Example

A recent PA car accident that killed two passengers is a good example of the dangers of hitting fixed objects in a vehicle. The accident occurred in Philadelphia on a morning in April. When Pennsylvania residents’ loved ones are killed in similar car accidents, they are typically entitled to file wrongful death claims in relation to the accidents.

The fatal crash occurred around 2:45 a.m., Philadelphia police said. A car with four passengers lost control, hit a curb, then crashed into a building. The two passengers that were in the back seat, a 23-year-old Upper Darby man and an unidentified woman were killed at the scene of the accident, according to police.

The 23-year-old woman, the driver, as well as the passenger in the front seat, a 25-year-old woman, were rushed to local hospitals for treatment. The driver was in stable condition, while the passenger was listed as being in guarded condition. Currently, police are still investigating this accident and they said the circumstances of the crash are yet to be determined — they are not sure whether drugs, speed, or alcohol played any role in the accident.

The deceased victims’ families may decide to pursue a civil claim against the driver for the damages they incurred for end-of-life expenses. If criminal charges are formally filed and prosecutors secure a conviction on a charge related to the car accident, it might be offered as evidence in a personal injury claim. A conviction, though not required, could help establish negligence on the part of the driver, which is required to be proved before a civil court will consider an award of damages. Families of individuals who are killed in car accidents typically consult experienced personal injury attorneys to establish the validity of their proposed wrongful death claims and to provide advice and guidance throughout the claims process, including any necessary litigation through the Pennsylvania civil justice system.

Dangerous Pennsylvania Highways

Any roadway can be dangerous when motorists are negligent or there are poor conditions. However, data by PennDOT points out a few particularly dangerous Pennsylvania highways:

  • Delaware Expressway, or the Interstate 95/I-76 Interchange
  • Susquehanna Expressway Interstate, or Interstate 83
  • Interstate 80, the longest east-west interstate in Pennsylvania
  • Interstate 79/I-70 Interchange
  • Interstate 78

Due to higher speeds and more expansive roads, highway crashes can particularly lead to catastrophic injuries, deaths, and severe property damage.

Why Crashes Commonly Happen

Most Pennsylvania crashes involve passenger cars, including light trucks, vans, and SUVs. Crashes can happen for a variety of reasons, but PennDOT points out several forms of driver error that can cause accidents. These include:

  • Speeding
  • Driving under the influence of alcohol
  • Careless/illegal passing
  • Distracted driving
  • Proceeding without clearance
  • Improper turning
  • Driving while drowsy
  • Tailgating

Poor weather and road conditions and vehicle defects can also contribute to Pennsylvania car crashes.

Pennsylvania Insurance: Personal Injury Protection

Pennsylvania requires drivers to have personal injury protection, also known as PIP. When a person suffers injuries in a crash, PIP covers their medical expenses, and often lost wages, regardless of who is at fault. This coverage can sometimes also help you if you’re hurt on a bicycle or as a passenger in someone else’s car.

Uninsured Motorist and Underinsured Motorist Insurance Coverage

Many Pennsylvania drivers elect to have uninsured motorist (UM) and underinsured motorist (UIM) insurance. UM covers the medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering for you and the people in your car if you’re involved in an accident and the at-fault driver doesn’t have liability insurance. UIM helps if you’re in an accident with an at-fault driver whose liability cannot cover the medical expenses of all the injured victims. The at-fault driver’s insurance typically pays for all damages up to the auto insurance policy limits on his or her policy. Then, the victim’s UIM steps in to cover the balance up to the limits they selected on their policy.

Pennsylvania Distracted Driving Law

Pennsylvania’s distracted driving law prohibits motorists from using an Interactive wireless communication device to send, read, or write a text-based communication while driving. Interactive wireless communication devices are not limited to phones. They also include personal digital assistants, portable or mobile computers, and other devices that can be used to text, instant message, email, or browse the Internet. They do not include GPS devices, systems that are integrated into the vehicle, or communications devices affixed to mass transit vehicles.

The penalty for distracted driving in Pennsylvania is a summary offense with no points, but there is a $50 fine as well as court costs and other fees. The violation will not be recorded on a non-commercial driver’s record, but it will be recorded on commercial drivers’ records as a non-sanction violation.

Getting Experienced Legal Help After a Pennsylvania Car Crash

If you were injured in a Pennsylvania car crash or lost a loved one in a crash, an experienced lawyer can help you greatly. It’s not a simple task to obtain the amount of compensation you need and deserve for your medical bills, lost wages, pain, and suffering, and other losses. An attorney can handle the insurance company and the at-fault driver, so you can focus on moving forward with your life.

Founded in Pennsylvania, Gay Chacker & Ginsburg has held true to its founding mission for more than 50 years: to serve our clients with respect, honest legal advice, and outstanding case results.

Gay Chacker & Ginsburg has handled thousands of Pennsylvania auto accident claims, ranging from fender benders to major pileups and wrongful death cases. When you hire us, we will work hard to get a financial recovery for you, whether that means settling out of court or going to trial. We have gotten substantial money for drivers, passengers, and pedestrians who have been injured in traffic accidents. Contact Gay Chacker & Ginsburg to learn more about how we can help with your automobile accident case. There is no risk or obligation. We charge you no legal fees unless we recover compensation for your damages. Call us today at (215) 567-7955 for a free consultation and start getting your life back.


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