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What to Do After a Multi-Car Pileup Accident

By Jill Bracken-Emerson on December 7, 2021

Multi-vehicle pile-ups can cause serious injuries to drivers and passengers involved. They are more likely to result in catastrophic or fatal injuries than two-car collisions, because a vehicle can be hit multiple times from different directions. There is also more flying glass, crushed metal, and leaking gas when there are more vehicles involved. These accidents are common on freeways where traffic moves fast, and when visibility or road conditions are poor. Multi-car crashes are chain-reaction events that can cause bodily injury and property damage to several motorists in different vehicles.

What Conditions Can Lead to a Multi-Vehicle Crash?

A multiple car accident is a series of traffic crashes involving more than two vehicles. A pileup can occur when one vehicle rear-ends another, pushing it into the vehicle ahead. This type of crash is also common when an initial rear-end collision leads to multiple rear-end accidents. Weather conditions such as rain, snow, and ice can affect braking time and make it difficult for drivers to stop, particularly when they are traveling at highway speeds.

When traffic slows or stops suddenly, oncoming vehicles traveling the speed limit may be unable to stop in time to avoid crashing into the cars in front of them. Even if they are able to stop, they may be rear-ended by other drivers in the same situation. Multiple car crashes are also common at intersections, when a driver trying to beat the light crashes into another vehicle, setting off a chain reaction.

What Steps Should You Take If You Are Involved in a Pileup?

If you are involved in a multi-car collision:

  • Keep your seatbelt on and wait until it is safe to get out of your car. Don’t risk getting out until the police have arrived and secured the scene.
  • Call 911 for emergency medical attention and to report the accident to the police.
  • Take photos or film of the vehicle damage and accident scene and get pictures of your injuries.
  • Collect insurance information from all other drivers involved.
  • Get contact information for any eyewitnesses.

Why Is it Important to Get Medical Attention and Document Your Injuries?

It is important to have your injuries assessed as soon as possible after a multi-vehicle pile-up. Even if you are not in pain immediately after the accident, remember that some symptoms can take hours or days to appear, including symptoms of injury to the cervical or lumbar spine. A visit to a doctor provides a medical record to document your injuries, which may be important further down the line in a multi-vehicle car accident case.

Should You Hire a Lawyer?

Multi-vehicle pileups are complicated cases that require a higher level of skill and expertise to resolve. When several different drivers are involved in a crash, it can be difficult to establish fault and liability. Indiana operates on a modified comparative negligence theory, also known as a 51% fault system. To file an injury claim, you must be less than 51% at fault for the accident. Your best chance of obtaining the best possible outcome is to have experienced Indianapolis personal injury attorneys by your side.

Why Choose Us?

At Emerson Divorce and Accident Injury Attorneys, L.L.C., we can thoroughly investigate your accident to determine the chain of events, the scope of your injuries and damages, and the costs you have accumulated because of the crash. We can negotiate skillfully with insurance companies on your behalf and advise you on whether to go to court. If you have been involved in a multi-car pileup, call us at (317) 969-8000. In a free initial consultation, we can explain your options under the law.

Posted in: Auto Accidents

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