If you suffered injuries in a collision with a drowsy driver in Port St. Lucie, you might be entitled to monetary compensation.
Fatigued driving carries many of the same risks as driving while under the influence of alcohol or drugs. These include delayed reaction time and poor judgment calls. A Port St. Lucie driver fatigue accident lawyer could help you seek compensation for your injuries.
Fatigued Driving in Port St. Lucie Could Result in a Personal Injury Lawsuit
When a fatigued driver causes an accident, they could be on the hook for any damage they cause. To hold them accountable, you must show that they acted negligently in causing the collision. Doing so requires establishing all four elements of negligence: duty, breach, causation, and damages.
Duty of Care
The basic building block of any negligence case is the duty of care. If the person that injured you did not owe you a duty of care, you are not entitled to monetary compensation. Proving this element is rarely an issue when it comes to fatigued drivers. This is because each motorist owes the people around them a duty to drive carefully.
Breaching the duty of care could involve any careless or reckless action that causes a crash. Driving while drowsy is a common example of a breached duty of care.
The third element is commonly referred to as causation. Causation is the link between a breached duty of care and the injuries you suffer. Without this link, you are not entitled to compensation from the other driver. This element ensures that a fatigued driver is only responsible for the injuries that result directly from their negligence.
Finally, you must show that you are entitled to recoverable damages to secure compensation. There are two types of damages: economic and non-economic. While economic damages are intended to make you financially whole after an accident, non-economic damages compensate you for the effects of your injuries.
Possible Compensation for Your Injuries
It is helpful to understand the financial compensation that is potentially available to you. There are different types of monetary damages, and the amount you recover will depend entirely on the nature of your injuries.
Medical Expenses From a Drowsy Driving Crash
For those seriously injured in an accident caused by a fatigued driver, the cost of medical treatment is often a top priority. The emergency care and ambulance ride alone could cost thousands of dollars. You may also be facing the costs of follow-up care, like hospital visits, physical therapy, and surgical procedures. You may recover these costs through a Port St. Lucie personal injury settlement.
Mental Anguish Caused By a Fatigued Driver
Mental anguish refers to the emotional harm that comes with a traumatic injury. Even as your injuries fade and your wounds heal, the pain of reliving a traumatic event can be debilitating. You could recover compensation for this mental anguish.
Pain and Suffering From Your Port St. Lucie Accident
Pain and suffering compensation is similar to mental anguish. Instead of the mental strain caused by an injury, you could be entitled to a monetary award to compensate you for the pain you have suffered. This type of compensation could make up a large part of your monetary damages.
Lost Wages From Recovering From Your Injuries
One of the most difficult parts of suffering a serious injury from a fatigued driver is missing time from work during your recovery. For many people, this means missing out on paychecks as well. A sudden halt on your income could be catastrophic for your budget, especially if you are dealing with unexpected expenses from the accident. You could replace those lost wages through a personal injury lawsuit.
Diminished Future Earning Power if Your Injuries Affected Your Ability to Work
Some injuries are so severe that they leave permanent consequences. If your permanent injuries leave you with the inability to maintain the same level of employment compared to before your accident, your future earnings could be drastically reduced. A personal injury settlement could provide you with compensation for your diminished future earning power.
Property Damage From Your Accident
Most of the types of compensation available through a personal injury lawsuit are related to the injuries you suffer during the crash. However, you could recoup damages related to your personal property as well. Typically, this includes the cost to repair or replace your damaged vehicle.
Dangers of Fatigued Driving
Driving while fatigued poses serious risks for others. While there are no firm numbers regarding these accidents, the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration (NHTSA) estimates that 91,000 fatigue-related accidents were reported to police in 2017. Of those, approximately 50,000 resulted in injuries and 800 led to fatalities.
There are many dangers associated with fatigued driving. Motorists that are fatigued often lose focus, causing them to weave across lanes of traffic or accelerate at an unsafe speed. Fatigued drivers also frequently have reduced reaction time, making it hard to stop in time to avoid a collision. In serious cases, fatigue could also cause a driver to fall asleep at the wheel. The results of collisions in these situations can be deadly.
Our Lawyers Can Help You After Your St. Lucie County Car Accident
If you were injured in a car accident caused by a fatigued driver, you could be facing significant physical, emotional, or financial hardships. While no amount of money can undo your injuries, a financial award could ease the challenges you currently face.
The Law Offices of Anidjar & Levine stand ready to fight for you after a fatigued driving accident. We understand the challenges that can come with a serious injury, and we are prepared to serve as your advocate during the litigation process. To discuss your options, call 1-800-747-3733 for a free consultation to see how an accident lawyer from our firm can help you.
We Can Help.