Dementia-related driving accidents are often among the most dangerous and damaging of all driving accidents. As with many things in life, nothing is ever certain; even the most seemingly safe vehicle on the road can become a potential hazard if a certain percentage of drivers are afflicted with some form of dementia. Dementia can affect almost anybody, even if age is not an issue; it can strike at any time, and at any age. Unfortunately, there is no cure for this debilitating disease. However, there are some medications and techniques that can reduce the likelihood of someone driving while experiencing memory issues.
The most common form of accidents caused by dementia involve car accidents. As the likelihood of driving accidents increases as dementia progresses, the necessity to warn about driving is imperative; so much so that sometimes, when not enough people reach the proper driving evaluation center, insurance companies will refuse to pay for coverage. In cases where the victim is suffering from minor forms of dementia, car accidents may still be caused by it. In mild forms of dementia, car accidents may still be relatively safe, as long as the patient still has good visuospatial skills (e.g., that person can accurately copy an intersection and a proper driving evaluation shows adequate motor skills).
For more severe cases, especially where there is a possibility of coma or brain damage, there may be a significant change in the likelihood of a car accident occurring. Dementia-related crashes are typically caused by either a major traffic accident (which results in multiple injuries), or a multi-car collision caused by a defective car or truck. The absolute worst case scenario is a motor vehicle crash, which causes death or permanent brain damage. These types of accidents have become extremely rare and can only be found in less than 1% of all car accident related deaths each year. While these accidents still occur, they are so uncommon that insurance companies don’t advertise them on personal injury news websites, such as MySpace or Facebook.
One may also find that accidents involving multiple vehicles, often caused by faulty engineering or poor judgment on the part of a driver, may include multiple-vehicle accidents. This type of accident could be caused by negligence, reckless driving, or simply an act of bad luck. Some causes of multiple-vehicle accidents may include mechanical failures, weather conditions, or driver error. Again, it’s important to note that single-vehicle accidents should also be reported, but they often go unreported because the driver may be guilty of negligent driving and not realize that his actions are at fault.
Other types of accidents may involve defective car parts or faulty engineering. Car accidents involving faulty car parts are common, which may also be caused by reckless driving, or by drivers who are simply in a hurry. Faulty engineering may be caused by poorly-constructed cars, by badly designed seat belts or other safety features, by poorly maintained machinery, or by drivers who fail to use the proper hand signals while driving. As with accidents involving large vehicles, it’s important for anyone who has a claim to contact their insurance company immediately so that they can be checked out. It can take a lot of time to assess whether or not a car part has caused an accident.
Finally, one may find that their insurance company is paying for their injuries after a New York accident even if they weren’t at fault. If this occurs, you will want to check with your insurance company to see if or when you qualify for financial assistance for your injuries. Most of the time you will be able to get medical assistance without filing a claim, depending on how badly you are injured and what part of New York you were in. However, if you were the cause of the accident and the damage was severe enough that you suffered a life-threatening injury, you’ll most likely have to file a claim.