There are few more terrifying moments for a driver than traveling down a divided freeway and seeing the headlights of another vehicle coming directly at you. Unfortunately, wrong-way crashes are increasing in regularity here in Orange County, often with tragic results.
Reports indicate that in June, a 53-year-old woman started driving south in the northbound lanes of the I-5 at about 1:30 in the morning. She crashed head-on into an oncoming vehicle carrying four people. All four motorists in the vehicle had to be transported to a nearby hospital with major injuries. The wrong-way driver also suffered major injuries and was admitted to the hospital.
A few days before that crash, a driver in a Mercedes was traveling south in the northbound lanes of the SR-73 freeway in Newport Beach right before 9:00 a.m. on a Wednesday. That wrong-way driver was reportedly driving around 100 miles per hour and caused a crash involving five different vehicles. One of the cars involved was a sedan driven by a 64-year-old woman who died at the scene of the crash.
Driving under the influence is a common cause of wrong-way accidents
While there are other causes of wrong-way accidents, drunk driving is the most common. In many situations, an intoxicated driver will make a wrong turn and will enter the freeway on an exit ramp. If it is nighttime, they may not realize they are driving the wrong way until they see headlights, at which point it is often too late to avoid a collision.
In the accident involving the I-5 accident, the wrong-way driver was suspected of being intoxicated. Law enforcement officers planned to take her into custody for driving under the influence (DUI) once she was released from the hospital.
Head-on collisions can lead to serious injuries or fatalities
Wrong-way drivers regularly cause head-on collisions with vehicles that are heading in the right, legal direction. Head-on crashes are some of the most deadly types of traffic accidents in Orange County, and victims often suffer life-threatening or fatal injuries.
Head-on crashes often happen when both vehicles are in motion, usually at freeway speeds. The drivers often have little-to-no time to hit the brakes before a collision, resulting in a sudden impact that brings fast-moving vehicles to a screeching halt. Even with a crumple zone, not much of the impact is absorbed, and the collision can crush the entire front of one or both vehicles. If someone is not wearing their seat belt, the chances of being ejected from the vehicle are extremely high, which often results in a fatality for the driver or any passengers.
When a sudden crash happens in the middle of the freeway, other drivers will have almost no time to react and avoid the accident. This often means that a pileup will occur that involves numerous vehicles and motorists. Generally speaking, the effects of a head-on collision caused by a wrong-way driver can be severe and widespread.
Holding wrong-way drivers responsible
The victims of wrong-way accidents can sustain life-altering injuries that may result in the need for long-term medical care or lifelong disability. Victims of these types of crashes should talk to the personal injury attorneys here at Blair & Ramirez LLP. We assist accident victims with recovering compensation for their injuries, medical bills, pain and suffering, lost income, and more. As an experienced personal injury law firm, our attorneys specialize in assisting the victims of car accidents here in Los Angeles and Orange County.
If you need a car accident attorney in Orange County, call our team today
The legal team at Blair & Ramirez LLP handles injury claims stemming from all types of car crashes, including wrong-way and head-on accidents. To schedule a free case evaluation, call (213) 568-4000 or contact us online today.