While new cars and trucks are safer than ever before, thousands of people are still injured or killed on Washington roads each year. That is because advanced auto safety technology cannot yet eliminate driver error, which is the top cause of car accidents nationwide.

Car crash in Cowlitz County

For example, the Washington State Patrol reported that four people were injured in a three-vehicle collision in Cowlitz County on Oct. 15. The crash, which took place near Milepost 47 on Lewis River Road, occurred when a 2017 Ram pickup truck slammed into the rear of a 2004 Honda Element that had stopped behind a 1994 Toyota pickup waiting to turn left onto Reno Cut Off Road. The force of the crash caused the Honda to flip on its side.

The driver of the Honda, a 39-year-old woman from Ariel, suffered undisclosed injuries and was transported to Legacy Emanuel Medical Center in Portland. A 9-year-old female passenger in the vehicle was taken to the same hospital, and a 9-year-old male passenger was taken to Randall Children’s Hospital in Portland via Life Flight. The driver of the Toyota, an 18-year-old man from Woodland, also suffered undisclosed injuries and was taken to PeaceHealth Southwest Medical Center in Vancouver. The driver of the Ram, a 31-year-old Woodland man, was not injured in the crash. According to the WSP, he will be cited for second-degree negligent driving for his involvement in the accident.

Legal options for car accident victims

Rear-end motor vehicle accidents are often caused by negligent behavior, such as distracted, drowsy or drunk driving. With the help of an attorney, it may be possible for a victim of car crash to file a personal injury lawsuit against the driver who hit them. This might result in a settlement that covers the victim’s pain and suffering, medical expenses, lost wages and more.