It only takes one driver’s unsafe road behavior to trigger a series of unfortunate car collisions. If it so happens that you are the middle car in a tragic accident involving more than two cars, you might be wondering if you also played a role in making matters worse.
Determining fault in a multiple-car accident
In 2021, Missouri recorded 491 deaths caused by a chain-reaction crash, accounting for 48% of the state’s total deadly car crashes.
The driver causing the initial collision often bears the highest percentage of fault. In most cases, it may rear-end you with a forceful blow, launching subsequent car crashes as you hit the car in front of you, which may consequently hit a fourth car and other vehicles surrounding it.
There are countless scenarios that could lead to massive physical and property damage. Aside from all involved drivers’ possible misconduct, an exhaustive investigation must also assess other relevant factors. Severe weather conditions or construction zones without proper warning signs could impact visibility, possibly causing drivers to react poorly as they operate their vehicles. Further, if mechanical failure plays a part, the car’s manufacturer may also become accountable.
Per Missouri’s pure comparative negligence rule, you may recover damages despite sharing a degree of fault in the incident. Thus, it is critical that you secure sufficient evidence, such as witness testimonies, dashcam footage and other significant marks found on the accident scene, to build your case.
The more, the messier
Whether you are partly to blame or not, it will be wise to seek the guidance of a legal team, as things can quickly escalate with several parties involved, including insurance companies. They can work with you in untangling complexities and protecting your rights.