With its sprawling freeway system, large population, and congested streets, the Los Angeles area is no stranger to auto accidents. After a noteworthy decline in car accidents in the months of March and April—due largely to Governor Gavin Newsom’s stay-at-home executive order in the wake to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic—the number of car accident injuries and fatalities has steadily climbed during the summer months. As you venture out onto the Southern California roadways, it’s important to practice safe driving habits and prepare yourself for what steps to take in the event that you suffer an injury in an auto accident.
An Uptick in Reckless Driving Practices
While many Californians stayed at home and traveled by car as little as possible during the early spring, some drivers interpreted the emptier roads as an invitation to speed. California Highway Patrol issued a total of 543 tickets to Los Angeles drivers traveling at a speed of over 100 miles per hour during the ten-day period between March 19 and March 29, a significant increase from the same period the previous year. This uptick in speeding vehicles also coincides with more pedestrians and cyclists who are getting their daily exercise while working from home, so collisions have increased as well.
How the City is Responding
Whether you are a driver, a cyclist, or a pedestrian in the Los Angeles area, you may notice several strategies that the city is taking in an attempt to curb speeding and other unsafe driving behaviors. Traffic lights and pedestrian signals are being adjusted to prevent drivers from speeding through intersections in order to reach a series of green lights ahead. The city is also deactivating several of the pedestrian signal buttons so that people will not have to risk contact or exposure to the virus, and the intersections will have longer and more regular walking cycles so that pedestrians have more chances to cross the street safely.
If an Accident Happens
Even if you practice safe driving, biking, or walking habits, accidents can still happen. As soon as you can, assess yourself and others for any signs of injuries that may require medical attention. Call for an ambulance right away if necessary. While you wait, contact the police to report the accident, and gather the insurance and contact information from the other drivers at the scene. You’ll need to call your insurance company as well to report the accident. These steps can quickly become overwhelming, especially if you’re also dealing with physical injuries, so it’s a good idea to contact a knowledgeable auto accidents attorney who can provide you with the information and guidance you need to move forward.
For more information on what steps to take following an auto accident in the Temecula or Murrieta area, contact Hales & Associates, A Professional Law Corporation today at 1-888-931-WORK (9675) to speak to a trusted auto accident lawyer.