Will car accidents during the coronavirus pandemic be different?
The coronavirus pandemic seems to be affecting every aspect of our lives in recent days. Each day brings about new cases, concerns, and restrictions on movement. Several states, including the entire state of California, have ordered residents to stay home except for essential trips out. As coronavirus tops our lists of worries, some people may be wondering how the virus and ensuing chaos could impact what is traditionally a primary cause of fatalities across the United States—car accidents. Our Los Angeles car accident lawyers discuss some important car accident issues that could be affected by COVID-19.
1. Will the rate of car accidents during the coronavirus pandemic go down?
With the entire state of California, which includes nearly 40 million people, now observing a stay in place order, traffic in the state has diminished. Nonetheless, some vehicles remain on the roadways as essential personnel report to work, truckers strive to fulfill the multitude of orders, and families venture out to seek food and medical care. It is likely that car accident rates will decrease during the stay at home period. In fact, authorities in China are reporting a sharp drop in car accident claims. Some accidents will doubtless still occur, especially given the stress of the times which may prompt erratic driving.
2. Will police and ambulances still respond to a crash?
It is vital that police officers arrive promptly to the scene of an accident in order to evaluate the crash, ensure those involved are given medical attention, and generate a police report. Emergency responders are already becoming overwhelmed with the cases of coronavirus pouring in. The situation is likely to get worse before it gets better. It is a legitimate concern that you may not be able to get an officer to come to the scene of a crash if there are no injuries. You will want to consult with a car accident lawyer right away if this happens to you as the police report is critical to your later personal injury case.
3. Should I still seek medical attention after a car accident?
Some people are expressing reluctance to go to the hospital out of fear of catching the coronavirus. However, if you are injured in a car accident, you need swift medical care. Attempting to avoid treatment could result in serious injuries. Hospitals all over the nation are taking action to ensure anyone with suspected COVID-19 are isolated and not intermixed in hospital waiting rooms. But in the end you need to do what is safe for you whether it is to stay home if it is bearable or seek treatment if necessary.
4. Can I still file my personal injury case?
Court access is being restricted nationwide, as some courts are requiring that motions be filed online and court hearings are to be held remotely by telephone or videoconferencing. Some regions have even tolled or suspended the statute of limitations for filing new lawsuits. Car accident victims will want to consult with an attorney as soon as possible for help navigating the complex court system during coronavirus as the situation is constantly evolving.