Two Dead After Runaway Tesla Strikes Home
Investigators believe that speed was the primary factor in a deadly crash which killed a 69-year-old Pinellas County woman.
Few details about the wreck were available, except that it happened on Manning Road and involved a Tesla which failed to stop at a stop sign at a T intersection. The vehicle barreled into a home and killed a 69-year-old woman.
A passenger inside the Tesla was also killed.
Speed and Vehicle Collisions
Excessive velocity is a factor in about a third of the fatal vehicle collisions in Florida. Many driver errors, such as making an unsafe lane change, only increase the risk of a collision. But speed increases the risk of a crash as well as the force in a collision.
In both cases, velocity is a multiplying factor. As for the risk, at 30mph, most vehicles move forward about six car lengths in the brief moment it takes for a driver to safely stop a vehicle. At 60mph, safe stopping distance multiples to eighteen car lengths.
Frequently, speed causes loss-of-control wrecks. Since fast-moving vehicles are more sensitive to direction changes than slow-moving vehicles, many drivers oversteer when they speed around curves. Then, they overcorrect to try and regain control of their vehicles. As a result, the car or truck usually spins out of control. That’s especially true if the road is wet or conditions are otherwise less than ideal.
Speed also multiplies the force in a collision between two objects, according to Sir Isaac Newton’s Second Law of Motion. In other words, excessive speed transforms a non-injury fender bender accident into a serious injury collision.
Damages in a vehicle collision claim usually include compensation for economic losses, such as medical bills, and noneconomic losses, such as pain and suffering. Additional punitive damages are sometimes available as well, in some extreme cases.
Compensation is usually higher in these claims, because the settlement value is higher. A negligence claim’s settlement value is a little like a new car’s sticker price. Both figures serve as a starting point for settlement or sales negotiations.
To a Tampa car accident attorney, risk is a factor in car crash settlement negotiations. If the insurance company has a legal defense, the risk of losing the case is higher, which means its settlement value is lower. But most defenses, like comparative fault, are unavailable in fixed-object crashes. In these situations, the tortfeasor (negligent driver) is 100 percent at fault, at least in most cases.
These principles apply in both direct and collateral fixed-object crashes. A direct crash is a wreck like the one in the above story. These wrecks usually involve residential abodes or commercial buildings. A collateral fixed-object crash usually happens when a driver jumps a curb or hits a light pole, the vehicle spins out of control, and hits someone.
Foreseeability is sometimes an issue in collateral fixed-object crashes. Basically, there must be a connection between the driver’s negligence and the victim’s injury. If Steve hits the curb and his pickup careens into Joe, Joe’s injury is probably foreseeable. However, if Steve’s truck hits the curb and careens into a wall, and the wall falls onto Joe, his injury is probably not foreseeable.
Turn to a Diligent Hillsborough County Lawyer
Injury victims are usually entitled to significant compensation. For a free consultation with an experienced personal injury attorney in Tampa, contact Mark H. Wright, PLLC. Attorneys can connect victims with doctors, even if they have no insurance or money.