Car Accident

Wintry Weather Results in Fatal Accident in Clackamas County

A snowy highway is believed to be responsible for a head-on crash that killed one young passenger and injured two others. The crash is a cautionary tale of the perils of driving in wintry weather. Read on for information on how to drive safely during the season of snow and ice on roadways, and contact a knowledgeable Bend personal injury lawyer if you’re hurt in a crash.

Snowy road causes driver to lose control and veer into opposing lane

The fatal crash occurred on the afternoon of Sunday, December 3. A white Ford Excursion was traveling west on Highway 26 near Government Camp, Oregon at the time of the accident. The 53-year-old driver explained to law enforcement that he lost control of the SUV, causing him to veer into the eastbound lane, where a 48-year-old Redmond woman was driving her 68-year-old mother and 9-year-old son in their 2013 Subaru Outback. The young boy was declared dead at the scene of the accident. His grandmother was airlifted to Legacy Emanuel Medical Center in Portland, and his mother was taken to a local hospital via ambulance. None of the three occupants in the Excursion were sufficiently injured to require hospitalization.

Winter weather requires attentive driving and car maintenance

Now that winter weather has arrived in Oregon, drivers must take extra care to ensure that they’re a safe presence on the road, both for their own well-being and that of others on the road. Drivers should take the time now to ensure that their vehicles are winter-ready. See that your tires have thick tread that can safely navigate wet or slippery roads, and that they’re fully inflated. Make sure you carry safety equipment such as ice scrapers, tire chains, and emergency lighting in your vehicle. Drivers should take extra care when driving on bridges and overpasses, as these roadways can freeze earlier than other roads. Keep your eyes peeled for black, shiny patches on the roadway; black ice can be extremely difficult to safely navigate. If you do find yourself on ice, slow your vehicle down and try not to apply the brakes, which can cause skidding and loss of control. Drivers who speed or fail to take extra care when driving on snowy or icy roads can face liability for accidents that result from their negligent driving. An experienced Oregon personal injury lawyer can help you file a claim for damages after a winter weather crash.

If you’ve been hurt in an accident in Oregon, find out if you’re owed money damages for your injuries by contacting the seasoned and dedicated Bend personal injury lawyers at Dwyer Williams Dretke Attorneys, P.C. for a free consultation at 541-617-0555.

Receiving Help with Your Car Accident Injury Claim

In the state of Oregon, automobile accidents are one of the leading causes of injury and death. In most situations victims who have been injured by the negligent and/or reckless conduct of a third party will be made an offer to settle outside of court, but there may be times when you will need to protest the offer or take further legal action in order to receive the compensation you deserve.

What Is Negligent and Reckless Conduct?

A car accident can be caused by unsafe roadways, defective vehicles, and/or negligence. A personal injury attorney who specializes in car accidents will carefully review a case and analyze the evidence before determining the party or parties who are responsible for your injuries.

Negligence is the most common cause of car accidents in the state of Oregon. Some of the most common forms of negligence which can result in an accident include:

  • Distracted driving
  • Driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs
  • Disobeying traffic laws (i.e. running a red light)
  • Failure to yield the right of way
  • Speeding
  • Fatigue
  • Aggressive driving
  • Defective vehicles or vehicle components
  • Tire blowouts
  • Poorly constructed, maintained or designed roadways

In some instances a car accident is caused by more than one party. A driver may be able to recover damages for negligence or reckless behavior of another driver, a manufacturer of a vehicle (yours, or that of another vehicle involved), or a public entity.

Do You Need an Attorney?

Insurance companies are eager to settle car accident claims as quickly as possible and for as little as possible. The majority of injured parties we meet have little to no experience when it comes to negotiating with insurance companies, and they do not realize the full value of compensation that they will need in order to heal and recover.

The attorneys at the law offices of Dwyer Williams Dretke PC have been able to recover an array of damages for injured parties, including:

  • Lost wages
  • Pain and suffering
  • Reimbursement of medical expenses
  • Compensation for wage loss based on future earning capacity
  • Compensation for reduced enjoyment of life
  • Loss of comfort and support of a spouse

Our personal injury attorneys act as your personal advocates. We make sure that your story is correctly heard by insurance companies, the judge, the jury and all other attorneys, and that you are fully compensated for your injuries.

You can schedule a free consultation with one of our car accident attorneys in Oregon today at (541) 617-0555.

Teenage Driver Injured in Major Car Accident Airlifted

A car accident along the Oregon 99E south caused serious injuries to a 19-year old driver. Initial investigation showed that the injured driver was in a white Ford Focus when a gold Cadillac struck the driver’s side door. The impact of the crash caused serious damage to the victim’s vehicle.

Due to the severity of his injuries, it was necessary for the teenaged driver to be flown and transferred to Willamette Falls Medical Center for immediate treatment.

Investigation into the circumstances of the car accident is ongoing.

Claiming Compensation for Car Accident

Considering that the point of impact of the car crash was at the driver’s side, the injured driver could have suffered from traumatic brain injury, spinal cord injury, fractures, and other internal injuries that require extensive and costly medical treatment and care.

If the injured driver is employed, he may also suffer from lost income and an impairment of his future earning capacity. Needless to say, the accident can significantly transform the life of the injured driver forever.

Just like the injured teenager, if you or a loved one is involved in a car accident resulting in serious injuries, you may be entitled to compensation under Oregon state law.

What you can claim in a car accident

Oregon revised statutes allow an injured party to recover economic and noneconomic damages. Economic damages refer to objectively verifiable expenses such as

  • Hospital
  • Medical
  • Nursing
  • Rehabilitation
  • Other costs of health care services
  • Lost income
  • Impairment of future earning capacity
  • Damage to reputation
  • Cost of substitute domestic services, and
  • Repair or replacement costs of the damaged car

Noneconomic damages are intended to compensate for non-monetary losses such as pain, mental anguish, emotional distress, humiliation, loss of care, companionship, consortium, and disruption of the normal and usual activities that are not related to gainful employment.

An additional monetary award considered as ‘punitive damages’ is also recoverable if the other driver is found to have been drunk driving. Punitive damages are intended to punish the negligent driver for his recklessness that caused the accident.

When to File a Compensation Claim

Oregon laws generally prescribe a period of two years from the time of the injury within which to file a claim for compensation, beyond which, the claim may be barred. In some cases, the compensation claim can expire in a period shorter than 2 years. Other types of claims require that formal notice of claim be given within a very short time period – usually 180 days. These claims include those involving any state, county or local governmental agency or a bar over-serving its patrons. Thus, it is important to seek the advice of a personal injury attorney immediately in order to preserve your claim.

In Portland, Oregon, the accident injury attorneys at Dwyer Williams Dretke have over 100 years of combined car accident experience. We have helped clients recover compensation in over 600 cases in the last three years alone.

Call us today at (541) 617-0555 for a free initial consultation.

The Common Causes of Auto Accidents

Auto accidents happen every day, all around the world. In total, over 10 million car crashes occur in this country every year, and, sadly, earlier this year [August], four people were killed in a single car crash in Sandy that ended in a fiery explosion.

While this crash only involved one car, such collisions can often involve multiple vehicles. Although there are many things that can cause a car wreck to occur, some are more common than others. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has identified two circumstances that have been responsible for most automobile accidents: driver error and “everything else.”

What is Driver Error?

Driver error is most often referred to as “distracted driving.” Unfortunately, such distracted driving has become more frequent given the rise of smart phones that can do just about everything a computer can do – and more. It is estimated that a quarter of all car crashes are caused as the result of cell phone use.

However, distracted driving isn’t the only type of driver error. Others include:

  • Drunk driving, which accounts for 40% of all auto accident deaths
  • Drowsy driving
  • Speeding

What Are the Other Causes of Car Accidents?

The second category identified by the NHTSA is “everything else.” This encompasses anything that leads to a car accident aside from driver error. These situations include:

  • Physical condition of the roadway due to weather
  • Improper maintenance of a road
  • Weather conditions that impair visibility, like snow, rain, or fog
  • Improper vehicle maintenance

Car crashes can cause injuries that can range from being very minor to very serious, and they often end in fatalities. As well, there is associated property damage and emotional trauma that accompanies the physical injury.

If you, or a loved one, have been in a car accident caused by the wrongful or negligent actions of another driver, or by an entity responsible for maintaining the roads, you may be entitled to compensation for your injuries. Consulting with an experienced auto accident attorney can help point you decide the right way to pursue your automobile crash claim.

Obtain a Free Consultation

The auto accident attorneys here at Dwyer Williams Dretke have decades of experience handling these types of claims and have been successful in securing the maximum compensation possible for their thousands of their clients.

For a free initial consultation, we welcome your call to our office at (541) 617-0555.

Oregon Health Worker Dies after Car Crash Brain Injury

A car accident on Interstate 5 caused serious brain injury to a mental health specialist who was carpooling with a co-worker, another doctor. Unfortunately, the doctor was killed during the multiple vehicle collision. Likewise, the health worker eventually passed away after being taken off life support. An investigation into the accident and deaths of the victims is ongoing.

Effects of Traumatic Brain Injury

Traumatic brain injury (TBI) can lead to serious life-changing effects physically and psychologically. It can also result in coma and brain death where the brain and brain stem no longer experience any measurable activity.

When a person is brain dead, removing any breathing devices will lead the heart to stop. Receiving immediate treatment for brain injury is absolutely vital.

If you or a loved one is involved in an accident that caused a brain injury, you may be entitled to compensation.

Common causes of brain injury

TBI can occur when the head or body suffers a severe blow or jolt due to a number of causes, including

  • Car collisions
  • Slip, trip and fall accidents
  • Physical violence
  • Gun crimes

In the United States, car accidents are the leading cause of brain injury-related deaths and slip and fall accidents often cause brain injury in adults.

Non-fatal brain injury requires medical treatment, therapy and rehabilitation. Even seemingly minor brain injuries can have long term psychological effects such as depression, mood swings, and inappropriate behavior that can negatively impact your life.

If another party was responsible for an accident that caused your injury, your Oregon brain injury attorney can help you to recover compensation from those responsible for your injuries. Depending on the circumstances of your brain injury, compensation can cover your medical bills, ongoing treatment, lost earnings from time off work, cost of home care while undergoing treatment, pain and suffering, and even loss of companionship.

In Portland, Oregon, the accident injury attorneys at Dwyer Williams Dretke have more than 95 years of combined experience in brain injury accidents, helping accident victims recover compensation that they deserve.

We also handle other types of personal injury cases such as dog attacks, slip and fall, semi-truck accidents, elderly abuse, and wrongful death. Call us today at 541-617-0555 to speak to a lawyer about your situation. Your initial consultation is free.