There are tens of thousands of car accidents in Nebraska each year. These result in thousands of physical injuries and hundreds of fatalities. These crashes can easily turn your life upside down. The lawyers at Copple, Rockey, McKeever & Schlecht have decades of experience handling these types of claims, as well as outstanding reviews from our past clients. We can help you and your family decide what to do next, and discuss ways to pursue maximum compensation.
To arrange a consultation, please call 402-218-2641. We proudly serve Lincoln, Norfolk, Omaha and all of the surrounding areas.
Please learn more in our car accident guide below:
- Common Causes of Car Accidents
- Distracted Driving
- Texting and Driving Laws in Nebraska
- DUI Accidents
- How Dangerous is Drowsy Driving?
- Why You May Need a Lawyer after a Car Crash
- Fatal Car Accidents
- Your Case Review
Common Causes of Car Accidents
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration says 94 percent of all vehicle crashes are caused by human error.1 These errors are fully preventable, and sometimes are the result of carelessness, distraction or aggressiveness on the part of the motorist:
- Distracted driving
- Drunk driving
- Reckless or aggressive driving
- Drowsy driving
We are human, and so sometimes the most innocent lapse in judgment or attention can result in a crash. Sometimes hazards or conditions on the road make it more difficult to drive, and a simple mistake can lead to a crash. In other scenarios, a motorist is being careless and negligent in a way that is 100 percent avoidable. In such cases, this careless driver can cause a serious car accident that injures, or even kills, other people sharing the road.
A driving distraction is anything that takes your hands, eyes or mind away from the task of driving. The types of distractions can be quite broad. They include:
- Talking on a cell phone
- Adjusting audio controls
- Adjusting the navigational system
- Reading a map or directions on your device
- Drinking or eating
- Personal grooming
Driving requires sustained concentration. You must be engaged in looking ahead as well as intermittently scanning the roadway. Such attention is necessary in order to anticipate hazards that could lead to a wreck.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, distracted driving-related crashes killed 3,477 people in the US in 2015.2 Another 391,000 people were seriously injured. NHTSA also estimates about 660,000 drivers are using electronic devices while they drive during any given day.
With the ubiquity of electronic devices, distracted driving may be more common than ever before. It's easy for motorists to lapse into inattention; however, attentiveness is essential to safer driving.
Nebraska crashes: According to the Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services,3 distracted driving caused at least 4,402 crashes in 2015, making up 10 percent of all crashes in the state that year. Twelve of those crashes caused fatalities. Cell phone distractions were reported to be involved in 160 of the crashes. Forty-three of the 160 accidents involved teen drivers. The state has had an average of 3,600 distracted driving-related accidents per year for the last 10 years.
Texting and Driving Laws in Nebraska
Nebraska currently bans texting while driving for all drivers. There are no prohibitions against talking on a cell phone. The texting ban is a secondary offense, therefore, a police officer can't pull you over for texting. Instead, you may be cited for texting if you are pulled over for an additional offense while you were texting, like speeding or running a stop sign.
Like it is in all 50 states, it is unlawful to operate a motor vehicle with a blood alcohol concentration of 0.08% or higher in Nebraska. Depending on time elapsed, body weight and height, a woman may reach 0.08% after just 1-2 alcoholic drinks, while a man may reach 0.08% after 2-3. Of course those numbers are highly variable, but the point is that levels of inebriation that make it illegal to drive are easily reached.
If a drunk driver decided to get behind the wheel and then caused an accident that injured you, you have every right to feel frustrated, angry and traumatized. Perhaps you are experiencing other emotions or pain because of the car crash. Whatever you feel, you can rely on our experienced Norfolk and Omaha attorneys to be at your side. We are here to provide you with clear, honest answers about what you can do next.
Drunk driving continues to be a problem across the US4:
- 9,967 people died in DUI accidents in 2014
- One person is killed in a DUI accident every 53 minutes
- About one-third of all crash deaths involve drunk driving as a contributing factor
If you or a family member was injured in a car accident caused by an inebriated driver, rely on our lawyers for advice. We will help you decide if pursuing an accident claim is the right way to fight to maximize your compensation.
When we handle a car crash case, our interests are our clients' interests. We strive to maximize our clients' recovery. When a settlement cannot be reached, we do not hesitate to bring our clients' car accident cases to trial.
How Dangerous is Drowsy Driving?
Drowsy driving is very dangerous, and more widespread than you may think. Estimates on the number of drowsy driving crashes vary – it's difficult for investigators and police officers to know when fatigue contributed to a crash. But some estimates say 5,000 to 8,000 people may be killed in these wrecks each year.5 The NHTSA reports 846 deaths in 2014, but recognizes the actual number is probably much higher. The NHTSA says 83,000 crashes each year may be caused by fatigued drivers.
Many adults do not get enough sleep. You should get 7-9 hours of sleep a night. But with full work and family lives, adequate sleep is often out of reach. Quality rest is essential to your ability to drive the next day. Fatigue has the following effects on driving:
- Impairs your concentration and attention
- Slows how quickly you react to situations on the road
- Impairs your decision-making capabilities
- Makes it more likely you will nod off completely
Although many drowsy driving accidents involve a single car, sometimes the sleepy driver injures people in other vehicles as a result of the crash.
Why You May Need a Lawyer after a Car Crash
Depending on the nature of the accident and your injuries, a claim handled by an experienced attorney may be the right way to pursue maximum injury compensation. In the event of a successful recovery, compensation may be awarded for things such as:
- Medical bills
- Lost income
- Out-of-pocket expenses
- Costs of physical rehabilitation
- Costs of job re-training
- Costs of in-home modifications or assistive technology
- Pain and suffering
Not all accidents necessitate a lawyer. You can find out if yours does. Our consultations are an opportunity to find out if you have a claim and if you want to pursue compensation. We will make sure you understand all of your options. We encourage you to call us as soon as possible so that we can provide advice before you begin hearing from the insurance adjusters.
Fatal Car Accidents
Tragically, there are hundreds of fatal car accidents in Nebraska each year. Many of these may have been preventable, if a careless motorist had been driving attentively. These types of wrongful death cases are devastating to the people involved. We have seen first-hand how a death caused by negligence can cause persistent, prolonged grief and suffering.
In the event of a death, the experienced accident lawyers at Copple, Rockey, McKeever & Schlecht will fight to recover every last dollar the family deserves. Wrongful death compensation may be awarded for the following things and others:
- End-of-life expenses
- Medical bills
- Funeral and burial costs
- Pain and suffering
- Loss of companionship
- Loss of loved one's benefits and income
- Loss of loved one's guidance
Rely on us during this difficult time. We will discuss your legal options with you and help you decide what to do next.
Your Case Review
With offices in Omaha and Norfolk, we are proud to serve people from across our region of Nebraska, and from across the state. To schedule a car accident case review, please call Copple, Rockey, McKeever & Schlecht at 402-218-2641. You can also contact us using the form on this page. We will review the details of your accident and resulting injuries in order to determine if you have a claim.