Pileup accidents, or multi-vehicle accidents, are highway accidents that involve many cars crashing into one another in succession. It usually begins with one car crashing into the car in front of it (rear-end collision), causing other cars behind it to have a chain-reaction of more rear-end collisions. This type of situation can be dangerous, as the cars can get “stuck” together, while the continuous impacts can cause additional damage and injuries. Backing up accidents can involve anywhere from a few cars to over a hundred cars in serious cases.

Pileup accidents post specific dangers such as:

  • Difficulty of rescue teams reaching injured persons trapped inside the car
  • A driver or passenger with a crush injury
  • Possibility of explosions and spreading fires
  • Cars drifting into other lanes

Injuries and damage may be more severe if the following are involved:

Pileup accidents can be attributed to many different factors, such as poor visibility, snow or ice on the roads, dust storms, hilly roads, and mechanical failures such as brake failures or brake light failures.

Who Can be Held Liable for a Pileup Accident?

Due to the many different cars and drivers that can be involved in a pileup accident, determining liability for the incident can be challenging. In many cases, the first car in a backing up may be held liable for various reasons, such as a failure to brake on time, or driving too fast. Other drivers following behind can also be held liable if they were also driving too fast or following too closely.

In a pileup accident, evidence is helpful for determining liability. Witness statements, information from vehicle computers and recording devices, photographs, and video footage can all be used to help determine which parties may be held liable. Accident reconstruction can also be used in particularly difficult cases.

Are There any Legal Remedies for Pileup Accident Claims?

Pileup accidents can involve serious injuries, property damage, and in some cases, fatalities. Legal action may be needed to provide relief and compensation for losses. In these types of lawsuits, a monetary damages award may be issued to non-liable parties. The damages may compensate the parties for losses like hospital bills, medical expenses, property repairs, lost wages, and costs associated with wrongful death expenses.

As mentioned, some multi-vehicle accidents can involve a large amount of parties, and calculating damages can sometimes be a complex matter.

Do I Need a Lawyer?

Pileup accidents can involve many parties and may involve complex legal matters. It may be in your best interests to hire a personal injury lawyer in your area if you need help with a lawsuit. Your attorney can provide you with legal guidance and can represent you during the court process.