It is an unfortunate truth that sometimes, Americans are killed when going about their daily lives or working in the workplace, often due to drunk drivers, workplace negligence or carelessness, or even if someone suffers alcohol poisoning at a bar or tavern and succumbs to it. Whenever such a case takes place, the friends, families, or even the employer of the deceased will probably want to pursue a wrongful death case against whatever person or party is believed responsible for that death, and doing this may involve finding legal assistance from the best lawyers who specialize in cases of injury or death. To find the best personal injury lawyer or other legal representation is to take the case seriously and prepare to reach for settlement against the at-fault party, and a wrongful death case, if handled by a skilled team of lawyers, can quickly come to a satisfying conclusion. How can this be done, and what are some of the leading causes of wrongful death in the United States today?
Causes of Death
A wrongful death case may come up for any number of reasons and incidents, some of them on Americans roads, others in the workplace. For example, many statistics are compiled every day keeping track of American drivers, and some data shows how dangerous a place these roads can be. Many Americans are killed or injured each year, often due to drunk drivers, distracted drivers, or simply bad weather. It has been determined that about 5.4 million non-fatal car crashes will take place in the United States each year, and thousands of fatal ones will take place each year; in 2014, for example, just over 30,000 fatal car crashes occurred. 3,906 trucks were involved in fatal crashes in 2013, according to the U.S. Department of Transportation. Truck drivers, too, sometimes drive impaired or cannot handle bad weather.
A blood alcohol content (BAC) of 0.08% or higher is enough for a drunk driver to be given criminal charges for this behavior, even if no crash occurred. Enough alcohol in someone’s system impairs their judgment and reaction time, making them dangerous on the roads to other vehicles, as well as pedestrians and bicyclists, and drunk drivers often are responsible for road fatalities. Distracted drivers, such as those using a handheld electronic device or those using the car’s dashboards features, are also dangerous, since they are not looking where they are going and may be too late to avoid pedestrians or oncoming traffic (this is why cell phone usage is generally illegal while driving a car). Finally, a problem may be simply the weather, since heavy snow or rain can impair visibility and make the roads slick, so even non-impaired drivers may get into accidents.
Some workplaces have great potential for danger. Those at construction sites or factories may be exposed to open flames, moving vehicles such as forklifts or dump trucks, noxious fumes or airborne particles, or machines that can crush or pinch body parts, and irresponsible use of such tools, machines, or vehicles can result in a wrongful death case. Outdoor workers like park rangers might be attacked and killed by animals such as bears, cougars, wolves, or more, or might receive fatal snake bites.
Any interested party may pursue a wrongful death case in litigation or court against any party deemed responsible for negligence that led to the fatality, and this will usually mean visiting law firms that specialize in such cases and finding one or more lawyers whose educational background, skills, and experience are to the client’s liking. In a case where a person’s actions did not directly cause a fatality, like a snake bite or bad weather, negligence on another party’s part to prepare the person against these hazards may be addressed instead. In many cases, the at-fault party, whether it be a drunk driver, a forklift driver who wasn’t paying attention, or a negligent park service crew may be held liable for the fatality, and settlement money and other demands may be made. In some cases, faulty equipment may be to blame, and traumatic force or exposure to heat or fumes may have caused the fatality when the equipment was malfunctioning.