$48.5 MILLION

Truck Accident Multimillion-Dollar Settlement.

"M.A.," a 30-year-old man, was driving to work in New Mexico. Suddenly a commercial truck veered across the center line and struck his vehicle head on. M.A. died at the scene. The McNeely Stephenson firm was hired shortly after the crash to represent the family of the deceased.

our client results

Winter weather in Indiana can create treacherous roads — heavy snows, icing, reduced visibility from blizzard conditions. It is not unusual for those in and around Indianapolis to read of multi-car pile-ups.

Within one week of February 2014 we read of the following:

  • A massive pile-up in Delaware County involving more than 20 cars because severe winds created white-out conditions
  • A multi-vehicle crash on I-69 in Huntington County affecting both north and southbound lanes and a mix of cars, tractor-trailer trucks and recreational vehicles
  • In Whitley County, as many as 20 cars were in a chain-reaction crash on U.S. 30.
  • DeKalb County was the location of a 20-car pile-up caused by white-out conditions.
  • Thirteen cars collided in Fulton County.
  • A wreck in LaPorte County included three cars, a truck, a van, an SUV and a tractor-trailer.
These crashes undoubtedly left a lot of people confused about who was going to pay for their damages. You can bet that insurance companies were also busily trying to place the blame on someone other than their insured driver.

In complex accident cases, it is a good idea to contact an Indiana car accident lawyer to ensure that you receive all the compensation you deserve. At McNeely Stephenson, we have been successfully litigating Indiana personal injury cases since 1982. Our experience and dogged determination to obtain full and fair compensation for our clients is well known.

You can read what some of our past clients had to say HERE — then call 855-206-2555 to schedule your free, no-obligation consultation about your multiple vehicle accident.

Causes of Chain Reaction Wrecks

As described above, some multiple vehicle pile-ups occur because of weather conditions — black ice, snow, windy blizzards. They can happen any time of the year, not just in winter. Rain water can cause cars to hydroplane. Fog can reduce visibility so that cars run up on vehicles in front.

There are factors other than weather, however, that are often responsible for chain-reaction crashes:

  • Distracted drivers who crash into a stopped vehicle in front of them, only to be rammed by the following vehicle
  • Drivers who are impaired by drugs or alcohol and make unsafe lane changes
  • Drowsy drivers who lose control of the vehicle as they nod off behind the wheel
  • Cars or trucks driving without lights, either because of carelessness or because the vehicle was poorly maintained.

Determining Fault in a Multi-Car Accident

Determining fault for a chain-reaction crash is a complex process. Insurance companies will be analyzing the details of the accident to pinpoint the “proximate cause,” or the negligent act which set in motion a chain of circumstances which naturally and foreseeably led to the resulting injury.

Some states have a no-fault insurance system, but not Indiana. So if a multi-car accident has left you with injuries or a damaged vehicle, you can file a claim under your own insurance policy, pursue a claim against the other driver’s insurance policy, and/or file a lawsuit against the other driver.

Mike Stephenson, an Indianapolis complex car accident lawyer, can help you determine the most advisable course of action based upon the circumstances of your accident.

Why Multiple-Vehicle Accidents are Deadly

Multi-vehicle collisions are especially dangerous because a car can be impacted by more than one other vehicle… and from several directions. A car which is in the middle of a chain-reaction collision will experience both a frontal impact and a rear-end hit, subjecting both the vehicle and its occupants to serious injury and damage. When vehicles slide and spin on snow or ice, there may be side impacts as well as frontal impacts.

Additionally, the more vehicles that are involved in a crash, the more tons of steel and broken glass there are to cause injury. There’s always the possibility of a vehicle fire caused by sparks and gasoline, but in multiple-vehicle crashes, that risk is compounded.

When 20 or 30 cars are piled up, emergency vehicles have a hard time reaching those who are injured. In some cases, all lanes are blocked by wrecked vehicles, so valuable time is lost getting urgent treatment to seriously injured motorists — and that delay may be as deadly as the impact of the crash.

real-life cases

“B.K.” was driving on a two-lane road one Sunday afternoon with his mother in the front seat and his brother and sister-in-law in the back seat when his life was forever changed. B.K. was struck head on by D.C.

D.C. had spent the day drinking with a friend and had stopped at a restaurant less than five miles from the point of the accident where D.C. had been served several drinks. D.C.’s blood alcohol level was more than twice the legal limit.

As a result of the terrible wreck, B.K. received devastating injuries, which included multiple broken bones, facial fractures, and loss of vision. B.K.’s mother, brother, and sister-in-law were all killed in the accident.

As one would anticipate, D.C. had virtually no insurance. Stephenson, through his thorough and detailed investigation, was able to prepare claims against the restaurant and those that provided the alcohol.

Stephenson pursued dram shop claims against those responsible CASE SUMMARY

D.H. was a competitive bicyclist who was riding in preparation for a cross-country fundraising ride. In the spring of 2010, D.H. was riding across an old steel-grated deck bridge in Shelby County when he hit a hole in the bridge and flipped over the handlebars of his bike. The impact to the bridge decking caused severe injuries to his face, teeth, tongue, and elbow.

Through the investigation, they were able to learn as early as 1998, the bridge inspection reports showed the bridge in question needed to be replaced. The county never authorized additional inspections. The county obtained $844,000 in funding for the replacement of the bridge in 2000, but the Historical Society and adjacent property owners wanted the bridge repaired rather than replaced.

This crash could have been avoided if the inspectors and county had done their jobs. CASE SUMMARY

Our client (“D.W.”) was a front-seat passenger in a vehicle that was struck by a UDF truck making deliveries. D.W. received broken arms and legs, as well as internal injuries. Stephenson was retained by D.W.’s personal counsel to prepare and try the case. Discovery determined that the UDF driver had multiple driving violations. Stephenson retained numerous experts to show the jury the devastating effects of the injuries. Before trial, the defendant’s company stated that a jury in a small southern county in Indiana would never return a verdict for $1 million in this case.

The defendant was correct; the verdict was twice that amount. CASE SUMMARY

We'll Put Our Resources to Work for You

After a multi-car pile-up on Indiana roads, you’re likely to be feeling confused and shocked. You may be trying to recover from broken bones and lacerations, depending on painkillers to get you through the day and night. If the accident has caused you to miss work, you’ll be worried about supporting your family.

McNeely Stephenson can relieve that burden. We’ve handled hundreds of car and truck accidents — single-car crashes and multiple-car catastrophes — and we know exactly how to go about handling your car accident claim so that you receive maximum compensation. Hand the worry over to us and let our resources back you up. Use the contact form on our website or call 855-206-2555. It won’t cost you a penny until we obtain damages on your behalf.

Updates
Personal Injury Lawyer
September 24, 2018 / Vehicle Accidents, Worker Injury
Indianapolis Road Construction: Are You Safer Now?

While we all appreciate the potholes being filled in before Old Man Winter arrives again, road construction and maintenance can make us groan with impatience. Some road repairs can lead to improved road safety, such as when guardrails are added, when engineering errors are corrected to create a safer roadway, or, yes, when fixing potholes. Other repairs with positive results include new traffic lights, new pedestrian safety features, improved tra...

AWARDED. CREDENTIALED. PROVEN.

Mike Stephenson is a Super Lawyer in Indiana along with many of his peers at McNeely Stephenson. This is one of the highest honors an attorney can achieve

AWARDED. CREDENTIALED. PROVEN.

The AV Preeminent Rating from Martindale Hubbell is the HIGHEST RATING and considered a significant accomplishment. It is a peer-reviewed process reflecting that other attorneys rank Mike Stephenson at the highest possible level of professional excellence.

AWARDED. CREDENTIALED. PROVEN.

Attorney Mike Stephenson is a proud member of The Litigation Counsel of America’s Honorary Society. A close-knit, peer-selected, and aggressively diverse honorary society of 3,500 of the “best trial lawyers” in the country. Less than one-half of one percent of American lawyers, vigorously vetted for skills, expertise, and service; an invitation-only collegial network.

AWARDED. CREDENTIALED. PROVEN.

The American Board of Trial Advocates is an invitation-only organization for attorneys of “high personal character and honorable reputation.” ABOTA works for the preservation of the civil jury trial, “Justice by the People,” and supports the right of a jury trial.

AWARDED. CREDENTIALED. PROVEN.

Our attorneys are proven advocates and trial attorneys. They have served as lead trial counsel in more than 100 civil jury trials, and have handled litigation in 18 states