Police chases can result in serious car wrecks that lead to catastrophic injuries for both the suspect and the police officer. Since police chases often happen at high speeds, victims can be seriously injured. Accidents at high speeds are already dangerous, but when a driver is engaged in other forms of reckless driving while avoiding police, it increases the risk for significant injuries and death. Shockingly, the FBI reports that one person dies every day due to an accident caused by a police chase.
Often, it is the suspect’s fault for causing the accident. However, who is responsible for injuries that occur from the accident? Car accidents caused by police chases base liability on negligence due to the driver traveling at dangerous speeds. In some situations, police officers can also be held responsible. Additionally, some states dictate that police officers cannot drive in high-speed police chases. If an innocent victim is involved in a high-speed police chase, the injuries can be lifelong and severe. Common injuries that occur in high-speed accidents include:
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Spinal cord injuries
Most importantly, victims should consult with a car accident lawyer who handles personal injury cases so they can obtain compensation.
Liability for a Car Accident Caused by a High-Speed Police Chase
Police officers have some latitude when involved in police chases. Nonetheless, they can still be held responsible under certain circumstances. A police officer has a duty of reasonable care to protect innocent parties. If a police officer collides with another vehicle during the chase, the officer or even the police department may be responsible for property damage, injuries, and death. Although laws vary by state, duty of care typically applies to bystanders. Above all, police officers serve to protect and any negligent actions that cause unreasonable harm can make the officer accountable.
In some cases, government entities may be held accountable, such as municipalities where the police department is located. Governmental employers can be held responsible if proper safeguards were not in place or if the police officers were not properly trained for such emergency situations.
A suspect can be held liable for injuries, property damage, and even emotional distress if they collided with another car during the chase. All motorists owe a duty of care to other drivers on the road. Reckless behavior of the suspect breaches such duty. Generally, if the suspect is injured during a high-speed police chase, they cannot sue for damages because the suspect is blatantly in the wrong. At any point, the subject could have abided by the law and pulled their vehicle over.
Atlantic City Car Accident Lawyers at the D’Amato Law Firm Help Innocent Car Accident Victims Obtain Compensation
If you were injured in a car accident due to the negligent actions of another driver, seek legal counsel from one of our experienced Atlantic City car accident lawyers at the D’Amato Law Firm today. We help car accident victims obtain compensation for damages, pain and suffering, and other losses. Complete our online form or call us at 609-926-3300 to schedule a free consultation. Located in Egg Harbor Township, we serve clients throughout South Jersey, including Atlantic City, Linwood, Galloway Township, Cape May, Vineland, Millville, Bridgeton, Ocean City, and Woodbury.