Unforeseen Events: Medical Emergencies and Auto Accidents

By on December 31, 2019
Medical emergencies

On a daily basis, a motor vehicle will leave its lane of traffic and crash into another vehicle, stationary object, bicyclist or pedestrian. There are times when such accidents are simply unavoidable. Those accidents are called unavoidable because the use of due care and caution wouldn’t have prevented the accident anyway. They were unforeseeable, even if reasonable precautions were taken. In the context of medical emergencies, an unforeseeable loss of consciousness might be an unavoidable accident.

Unavoidable Accidents in the State of Washington

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 As per the law in the State of Washington, an unforeseeable loss of consciousness by the driver of a motor vehicle can be considered an unavoidable accident. What that means is that when a jury is asked to consider an unavoidable accident, it isn’t necessarily required to find that the defendant was guilty of causing an accident and injuries or death.

Unforeseeable Loss of Consciousness as a Defense in Auto Accident Cases

CCD Law explains that in Washington state when a person suffers a medical emergency which then causes an accident where someone else is injured, the driver might not be legally at fault. Why? Because the injured person has to prove that the driver was negligent which requires a certain level of intent such as carelessness or recklessness.

However, if the driver is not in control of his or her actions due to a medical emergency, then the driver can’t be considered careless or reckless and thus is not negligent. For this defense to be successful, the driver must prove:

  1. He or she suddenly lost consciousness before the accident occurred, and
  2. The loss of consciousness caused the driver to lose control of the vehicle, and
  3. The loss of consciousness was caused by an unforeseeable medical emergency.

If a motorist does have knowledge of a condition that might cause a driver to suddenly lose consciousness, he or she could still be held liable for damages in an accident where the sudden loss of consciousness defense Is raised. If you’re injured or lose a loved one in an accident where the defense is raised, you’ll want to protect your best interests by consulting with an experienced and effective car accident lawyer right away.

 

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Unforeseen Events: Medical Emergencies and Auto Accidents