Prince George Accidents
Accidents happen everyday in Prince George, many leaving northern British Columbia residents with serious physical and emotional injuries. Depending on the nature and severity of the accident, you may be entitled to compensation from one or more sources. For example, if you were hurt in a car accident, you are entitled to Part 7 benefits under your Basic Autoplan coverage from the Insurance Corporation of British Columbia (ICBC), regardless of who was at fault. But if another driver’s actions caused the accident, then you can seek additional damages from the negligent party under their ICBC third-party liability coverage.
The Prince George accident lawyers at Preszler Injury Lawyers can help if you have been injured due to any kind of third-party negligence. Accident victims are often unsure of their legal rights when it comes to filing an ICBC claim or bringing a formal lawsuit. Such uncertainty often results in the victims recovering less than they are legally entitled to for their damages. Our skilled, compassionate British Columbia lawyers can guide you through the legal process and help ensure that you are not victimized a second time by the legal system.
What You Need to Know About Accidents in Prince George
According to the most recently published figures from ICBC, the North Central region of BC, which includes Prince George, has averaged 17,000 car crashes annually between 2012 and 2016. Just over 12% of these accidents–about 2,100 incidents annually–caused death or injury to someone involved. While not every accident was the result of driver negligence, those that were generally fell into one or more of the following categories:
- Driver travelling at excessive speeds. This includes drivers operating in excess of the posted speed limit, or at a speed that was too dangerous given the road conditions.
- Driver impaired by drugs or alcohol. Obviously it is against the law in British Columbia to drive with a blood-alcohol level in excess of 0.05%. Even drivers with lower alcohol concentrations or those who are taking lawfully prescribed medications may be impaired and unable to safely operate a motor vehicle.
- Driver distraction. Alcohol impairment may garner more public attention, but distracted driving is actually a more common cause of car accidents. Drivers who are looking at their smartphone instead of the road can be just as dangerous as someone who has had multiple drinks.
- Failure to follow traffic laws. Ignoring a stop sign, failing to yield the right-of-way, or simply executing a pass without proper signalling can all lead to a potentially deadly accident, even when the driver is not otherwise impaired or distracted.
Keep in mind that car accidents are not just about other drivers and passengers. At the Preszler we also represent victims of pedestrian accidents, motorcycle accidents, and bicycle accidents. In many cases your ICBC insurance plan will cover your injuries for these kind of accidents even if you were not in a motor vehicle.
What You Need to do Following an Accident
Preszler Injury Lawyers can assist you in seeking compensation for injuries arising from other kinds of accidents, as well, including but not limited to slip and falls, trip and falls, and dog bites. Regardless of the type of accident, there are a few basic steps you should always take after attending to your immediate injuries.
First, you should attempt to document the accident scene as best as you can. If you have your smartphone with you, use it to take pictures of your damaged vehicle, bicycle, or other property. Make sure to obtain and verify ICBC insurance information from the other driver at the scene. Also, locate any witnesses who saw what happened and take down their contact information.
Second, contact a qualified Prince George accident lawyer before providing any kind of detailed statement to ICBC or any other insurance company. Remember, even if you are a policyholder, that does not mean the insurance company is necessarily on your side. In cases in which there may be third-party liability, the insurer has every incentive to try and shift blame for the accident to you. This is why you need to have a lawyer who is working for you–and only you–to ensure that you are treated fairly.
Third, you should never have to pay a lawyer in advance to bring a personal injury claim that ultimately proves unsuccessful. At Preszler Injury Lawyers, we work exclusively for accident victims on a contingency basis. This means you do not pay unless we win. So, if you live in Prince George and need legal advice following an accident, call us today at 1-844-373-8202 to schedule a free, no-obligation consultation.