Collisions with Animals
The car accident attorneys at Katz Wright Fleming Dodson & Mildenhall LLC represent victims of personal injury and wrongful death arising out of collisions with animals in the communities surrounding Atlanta and rural areas throughout Georgia.Car Crashes Resulting From Rancher Negligence
There are well over one million head of cattle being raised throughout the state of Georgia. Half the cattle in the state are owned by over 20,000 small producers with less than 100 head of cattle apiece. Wherever you drive in Georgia, you will not be too far from a cattle ranch. A full-grown cow can weigh well over 1,000 pounds, and a collision with one is enough to cause serious damage to the vehicle and severe personal injury to the occupants.
Owners of pets and livestock, from dogs and horses to cows, are required to exercise care in the keeping of their animals. This duty includes maintaining fencing in good repair and taking other steps to avoid animals wandering out into the road. Animal owners who negligently allow their animals to stray onto the road and cause a collision may be liable for any injuries which result.Deer Strikes and Other Collisions with Wildlife
Coincidentally, there are about as many wild deer living in Georgia as there are cattle being raised as livestock - about 1.3 million. Unlike cattle which are fenced in and constantly accounted for, there is nothing to stop a deer in search of food, water, or mating from leaping over a fence and dashing into the road. In fact, the odds of colliding with a deer in the state of Georgia are 1 in 154, meaning that it is not all that unlikely that you may hit a wild animal on the road at some time. The damage to your car in an animal strike can be substantial, and serious personal injury can result. Collisions with deer and other wild animals account for hundreds of deaths each year nationwide, and the number of collisions is actually on the rise as human and animal habitats continue to get closer together.
Some tips for safe driving include taking special care when you see an animal crossing sign, and being attentive in areas where a deer is likely to cross the road to forage or access a water source. How you react is critical as well; swerving to avoid hitting a deer can cause you to go off the road, sideswipe another vehicle, or have a head-on collision with an oncoming car, which often leads to serious or deadly results. Also, always assume that there are more animals that will cross the road after you see the first one do so. This is one of the key mistakes drivers make, which is to assume that the animals that have crossed the road are the only ones that are going to cross.
Most importantly, do not assume that you have no way to recover for the damages to your car and person if you are involved in a collision with an animal. Often times, there is insurance available to drivers and passengers in these cases, including policies covering nearby landowners, the state or local municipality, your own auto insurance, etc. Remember that filing an insurance claim puts you at odds with the insurance company, even if they are "your" insurer, so it is important that you have legal representation to keep your claim from being seriously undervalued or denied.Our Georgia Personal Injury Attorneys are Here for You
From Columbus to Macon to Rome and all points in between, the attorneys at Katz Wright Fleming Dodson & Mildenhall LLC are here to help if you or a family member have been hurt in a collision with an animal due. Contact our office at (404) 460-0101 or for a free consultation with an experienced GA lawyer regarding your right to receive compensation for your injuries, property damage, lost wages and pain and suffering.