Kansas Fatal Car Accident Lawyer
If you lost a spouse, child, family member, or other close relatives in a fatal car crash, you likely have many questions as you process your grief. How will you get through this challenging time? Why did this happen? What can you do to hold the at-fault driver accountable? How will you recover from this tragedy?
The fatal car accident attorneys at Mann Wyatt Tanksley Injury Attorneys are here for you in your time of need. We know how overwhelming this tragic experience can be. It affects your family, future, finances, and much more. We also know how to pursue the accountability and compensation you deserve from the at-fault driver.
Contact the Kansas accident attorneys at Mann Wyatt Tanksley Injury Attorneys today for a free consultation.
The Number of Fatal Car Accidents in Kansas Has Increased Over the Years
Unlike states around the country, there has been a troubling increase in the number of fatality accidents in Kansas. According to reports from the Kansas Department of Transportation, deaths so far in 2022 are up 10 percent from last year. Kansas Highway Patrol has also seen a concerning increase in the number of people driving extremely fast, at speeds of 100 miles per hour or greater. Speeding increases the risk of accidents, especially fatal ones.
Car Crash Statistics in Kansas
According to data from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS), here are some Kansas car accident statistics for one recent year:
- Kansas saw 382 fatal crashes causing 426 deaths on roadways. That accounted for 14.5 deaths per 100,000 people, and 1.53 deaths per 100 million miles traveled.
- Pickup and SUV occupants are at greater risk of death in vehicle crashes, accounting for 33 percent of crash fatalities. Car occupants are a close second, making up 32 percent of crash fatalities. Large truck occupants make up 3 percent of crash fatalities, motorcyclists 15 percent, pedestrians 11 percent, and bicyclists 1 percent.
- Deaths are just as common in single-vehicle crashes as in multiple-vehicle crashes in Kansas. In 2020, each accounted for 50 percent of crash fatalities.
- Kansas reports blood alcohol concentration (BAC) for only 30 percent of fatally injured passenger vehicle drivers, compared with 58 percent nationwide. Unfortunately, this number is too low to estimate the percentage of drivers with BACs at or above 0.08 percent.
- 46 percent of fatally injured vehicle occupants in Kansas were not wearing their seat belts. According to daytime observational studies, approximately 85 percent of Kansas drivers wear seat belts.
- 62 percent of vehicle crash deaths occurred in rural areas, much higher than nationwide (43 percent). This is likely because Kansas has far more miles of rural roads: approximately 125,979 miles compared to 14,133 miles of urban roads.
Common Injuries that Result in Death in Car Crashes
The following common injuries may result in death in car crashes:
- Traumatic brain injuries (TBIs) — A TBI can be caused by a blow to the head or penetration of the brain. Some TBIs may be mild and resolve with time. However, severe TBIs can cause life-long disability and even death.
- Spinal cord injuries — The spinal cord is a column of nerves that plays a crucial role in movement and feeling throughout the body. Damage to the spinal cord can result in limited body function, paralysis, or death.
- Internal injuries — High-impact accidents such as car crashes can cause internal organ damage or internal bleeding. These injuries may be brutal to diagnose at first but can quickly turn tragic.
- Penetrating injuries — These injuries occur when an object, such as shattered glass, pierces the skin. Depending on the severity and loss of blood, penetrating injuries can be fatal.
- Crushed or broken bones — Accident victims who are pinned, crushed, or thrown from the vehicle could suffer broken bones. If a bone fragment punctures a vital organ such as the lungs or heart, the victim could experience serious complications or death.
Can the Victim’s Family Seek Compensation for a Fatal Car Accident in Kansas?
The family of a lost loved one may be able to pursue compensation from the at-fault party after a fatal car crash. This type of case is called a wrongful death lawsuit.
According to Kansas state law, the victim’s heirs can file a wrongful death lawsuit if their loved one’s death was “caused by the wrongful act or omission of another.” If the victim had cause to file a personal injury lawsuit had they lived, their heirs could file a wrongful death lawsuit for that incident.
Heirs who can file a wrongful death lawsuit in Kansas may include the following:
- Surviving spouse
- Surviving children
- Surviving parents or grandparents
- Surviving siblings
According to the statute of limitations, heirs have two years from the date of their loved one’s death to file a wrongful death lawsuit in Kansas.
What Do You Need to Prove in a Fatal Car Accident Lawsuit?
While you may feel someone else should pay for the loss of your loved one, there are certain things you must prove in court to succeed in a wrongful death lawsuit. This is where an experienced fatal car accident lawyer can help.
Your car accident lawyer can help you gather evidence to prove that:
- The at-fault party’s negligence caused your loved one’s accident
- The accident caused your loved one’s death
Damages You Can Seek in a Fatal Car Accident Lawsuit in Kansas
In a wrongful death lawsuit, a fatal car accident victim’s family can pursue compensation or damages from a negligent party determined to be at fault for the accident. Common types of damages awarded to Kansas families after a fatal car accident lawsuit include the following:
- Funeral and burial expenses
- The accident victim’s medical bills
- Value of the victim’s future income had they lived
- Emotional suffering and mental anguish of the survivors
- Loss of the victim’s companionship, marital or parental care, and support
According to Kansas state law, the court awards damages to all eligible heirs, regardless of whether they joined the lawsuit at the outset.
Contact a Fatal Car Accident Lawyer Today
The experienced Kansas car accident attorneys at Mann Wyatt Tanksley Injury Attorneys understand the grief and confusion that comes with the sudden and untimely loss of a loved one. However, suppose someone else’s negligence is to blame. In that case, we’ll be ready to pursue the compensation your family needs and deserves in the wake of this tragedy. Contact us today for a free case evaluation with a compassionate team member.