You’re the world’s best driver. Your hands stay at ten and two and your eyes stay focused on the road ahead, with frequent checks of your rear-view and blind spots whenever necessary. You signal when changing lanes, look in every direction when crossing intersections, always obey the speed limit and flow of traffic, and you drive defensively, never getting agitated or anxious about finding the right lane or parking spot. You always buckle up, and you drive one of the safest cars on the market. And while you’re part of the reason why Ontario’s roads are safer now than they’ve been in many years, you’re never going to eliminate the chance of getting into a serious (or even life-threatening) collision completely.
Why? The answer is simple: other drivers. One fact of our interconnected world is that no matter how safe we are and how many sensible precautions we take, there’s a good chance that the hundreds (or thousands) of people we pass on the road in any given day aren’t as careful.
Every eighteen hours, someone is killed on a road in Ontario. And while most of these unfortunate people are either passengers or drivers of automobiles, many of them aren’t even in a vehicle, and most of them are clear-headed and obeying the law. According to the Ontario Road Safety Annual Report, the highest percentage of pedestrians killed by a motor vehicle in 2011 were merely crossing the road with the right of way. The highest percentage killed or injured were also lucid and in a normal, healthy condition — in other words, they weren’t being reckless, they weren’t excessively fatigued, they weren’t intoxicated, and they had a clear view of the road.
Similarly, even the safest bicyclists and motorcyclists can have a hard time negotiating our province’s roadways. It’s fairly common knowledge that it’s more dangerous to drive a motorcycle than a car, van, or truck, but this isn’t because motorcyclists themselves are poor or unsafe drivers. In fact, studies show that the majority of accidents involving motorcycles aren’t caused by weather, youth, or recklessness, but by other drivers — people who aren’t used to being in such a vulnerable position (like motorcyclists are), so sometimes forget to take extra precautions when behind the wheel. As for bicyclists, almost half of all cases in Ontario involving the death of a bicyclist were caused by both the automobile driver and cyclist’s actions (or inactions, depending on the circumstances). Of all fatalities, one hundred percent were preventable.
So remember that just because you’re a phenomenal driver, cyclist, or even a careful and attentive pedestrian, a road-based injury can happen to you. With that in mind, there are systems in place to help make things right. If you or someone you love becomes a victim of someone else’s negligence, lack of attention, impairment, speed, or aggression, then you deserve justice for any pain, suffering, loss of work, and loss of income you might receive as a result. People who fail to slow down, observe the rules of the road, or obey the law should be accountable for their actions. And the best way to pursue accountability and get the compensation you deserve is by seeking legal representation. Expert legal counsel from personal injury lawyers experienced in car accidents can mean all the difference to your case — and can be the deciding factor in whether or not you receive justice. Look for an accomplished firm like McKenzie Lake Lawyers to help you make your claims — their up-to-date knowledge of the law, insurance and disability claims, and dedication to their clients mean you’re getting the best representation in the London, Ontario region, and you’re maximizing your chances of a positive result.
You play by the rules and make smart choices on the road every day. Make another smart move by getting quality legal assistance, and put someone else’s mistake behind you for good.