Whatcom County May Hit Record Number of Car Accident Deaths in 2017
Our June blog post about a sharp rise in Whatcom County car accident deaths marked 10 deaths between January and mid-June, 2017. As of November 14, 2017 Whatcom County has experienced a tragic 20 crash deaths, which means a shocking additional 10 lives lost. The county has averaged 15 deaths from traffic accidents each year over the last decade but had seen improvement in 2015 and 2016 with 11 and 12 deaths, respectively. The highest number of car accident related deaths over the last decade was endured in 2008 with 21 deaths but 2017 isn’t over.
What is causing the rise in Whatcom County car accident deaths?
The three main factors involved in the loss of these 20 lives were impaired drivers (eight), speed (seven) and distracted driving (six). These factors are responsible for most of the fatal crashes in Whatcom County; and they are all controllable.
Public education campaigns, law enforcement and driver responsibility all have a role to play in decreasing these preventable deaths.
What groups of people were involved in the 2017 Whatcom County car accident deaths?
Drivers between the ages of 16 and 25 have been disproportionately involved in Whatcom County’s fatal crashes. In fact, nine of the fatal car accidents in 2017 so far involved a young driver. Drivers over the age of 70 were involved in three of the deathly crashes; three involved pedestrians; two involved motorcyclists and one involved a cyclist. Older drivers as well as pedestrians, cyclists and motorcyclists who lack the protection of an enclosed vehicle are less likely to survive a serious car crash.
Wrongful death lawsuit
If you lost an immediate family member in a tragic motor vehicle accident you may be entitled to monetary damages as a result of the improper conduct of the at-fault driver. The purpose of a wrongful death lawsuit is to seek “pecuniary” or financial injury compensation for the loss of support, services, potential inheritance, medical and funeral expenses of the lost relative.
The statute of limitations for a wrongful death action in Washington State is three years from the date of the injury and is not delayed if the beneficiaries are minors because the suit is brought by the personal representative not the minor.
In your state of loss you may be feeling overwhelmed but still determined to seek justice for this unnecessary loss. The first thing to do is call a wrongful death lawyer in Whatcom County. An experienced wrongful death attorney knows the ins and outs of the laws in Washington State and will use them to your advantage. He or she will know what other similar cases earned in damages and fight to get you the full amount that you deserve. If the loved one who passed away was a primary breadwinner, you could be looking at millions of dollars in damages in a legitimate case.
If you or a loved one is dealing with an accident or injury through no fault of your own, you have enough on your plate. Let an experienced accident attorney fight for the full compensation that you deserve. It is not uncommon to receive a settlement from the insurance company that is five to ten times bigger with the help of a lawyer. Call the skilled wrongful death attorneys at Tario & Associates, P.S. in Bellingham, WA today for a FREE consultation! We have been representing residents of Whatcom County, Skagit County, Island County and Snohomish County since 1979. You will pay nothing up front and no attorney fees at all unless we recover damages for you!