Traffic accidents led to 36,500 fatalities and 4.5 million injuries. Over 23 million vehicles were damaged. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) dug into this data and recently released the results of their findings — and the results are staggering. The government agency reports these accidents cost the country over $140 billion in 2019 alone.
It is no surprise that traffic accidents are expensive, but to see those numbers is shocking. Although having a larger scale number helps to appreciate the magnitude of the expense of these accidents, it is important for each individual to take the details of their own accident into account to help get an idea of how much their crash will cost. A fender bender, for example, will generally not cost as much as a catastrophic, high-speed collision. There are certain questions each accident victim should ask themselves when navigating the aftermath of a crash and trying to estimate the cost.
#1: Was anyone injured?
The cost of medical and rehabilitative care can increase the overall expense of an accident dramatically. Did anyone need emergency care at the scene? Did the accident cause serious injuries? If so, the cost of the accident will be high.
#2: What was the vehicle damage?
Although injuries to victims of the accident are top priority, it is important to take the vehicle into account as well. This vehicle likely played an important role in getting you to and from work, transporting family and loved ones, and meeting your daily needs. Repair or replacement of the vehicle is an important expense that should be covered by the individual responsible for the accident.
#3: Who was liable?
An attorney experienced in this area of law can review the accident and help to determine liability. This is important because those who are left with the high cost that comes after a serious crash should hold the responsible party accountable for these expenses.