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Out of all cities in Pennsylvania, the highest numbers of auto accidents occur in the city limits of Philadelphia. However, it’s not clear exactly how many vehicle accidents occur in Philadelphia each year. According to data obtained by Azavea Altas from the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation, there were over 53,000 car accidents in the Philadelphia city limits from 2008 to 2012. On average, that’s roughly 13,250 car accidents in Philadelphia per year. Broken down, that’s almost 40 car accidents per day, over 250 accidents per week or roughly 1,100 accidents per month.
Related: How to Request a Traffic Accident Police Report in Philadelphia
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However, according to the Philadelphia Police Department, about 70,000 vehicle accidents in Philadelphia occur each year (source: http://www.phila.gov/records/pdfs/FactSheets/policeReportsWebSite.pdf). That’s a vastly different number than the number reported by Azavea Atlas. Despite the disparity, what’s clear is that car accidents in Philadelphia are very common.
Hotspots for accidents include Route 1 (Roosevelt Boulevard), all major highways (I-476, I-95, I-76), and major roads like Market Street and Broad Street. In addition, certain neighborhoods or areas see an influx of specific types of accidents. For example, there is a high rate of bicycle accidents in the University City or west Philadelphia area. Roosevelt Boulevard sees a high number of aggressive driving accidents.
Many residents of Philadelphia and residents from out of state (i.e., New Jersey, New York, etc.) are often confused about their legal rights and the incredibly complex insurance process. Between getting medical bills paid, opening a property damage claim and worrying about lost pay or wages, an injured auto accident victim often feels overwhelmed. Coupled with physical injuries, the weeks and months after an auto accident can feel like a nightmare.
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Resources/Info – After A Philadelphia Car Accident
Below you will find car accident information and resources for residents of Philadelphia and Pennsylvania who are injured in car accidents. See: What to do After a Car Accident in Philadelphia – By a Philly Car Accident Lawyer
Contact Info Of Common Insurance Companies In Philadelphia
Be sure to have your policy number ready.
|Liberty Mutual||800-2CLAIMS (800.225.2467)|
|State Farm||800-STATE-FARM (800.782.8332)|
Cooperating With Your Own Car Insurance Company After An Accident
You have a duty to cooperate with your own insurance company. This helps speed up the claims process, especially the PIP (Personal Injury Protection) claims process. However, you are under no obligation whatsoever to speak to or otherwise cooperate with the insurance company of any other person involved in the accident. In fact, you should refrain from speaking to an opposing insurance company (i.e., insurance company of the at-fault driver) without first consulting with a lawyer.
Legal Info – Filing A Philadelphia Car Accident Lawsuit
In many cases, an injured driver or passenger will have to file a car accident lawsuit in Philadelphia to obtain fair financial compensation for their injuries and resulting damages, such as lost pay or wages. The Philadelphia court system sees a high number of car accident lawsuits every day. That’s why the local system divides car accident cases into two main categories: compulsory arbitration and major jury. Compulsory arbitration auto accident cases are those in which the injuries and damages are valued at $50,000 or less. These cases are fast-tracked through the system and are required to be submitted to a panel of arbitrators. However, cases not resolved via compulsory arbitration will go through the normal court system.
Major jury cases are those in which the injuries and damages are valued over $50,000. They are filed in the Court of Common Pleas for Philadelphia County. Under local court procedures, most auto accident lawsuits are assigned to a specific track, the expedited track. Cases on the expedited track are usually scheduled for trial inside of 1 year, from the time they are filed.
Hiring A Philadelphia Car Accident Lawyer – 3 Things To Look For
Pennsylvania car accident law is very complex. It takes years to develop enough skill and expertise to handle these kinds of cases correctly. Therefore, when looking to hire an accident lawyer for your Philadelphia car accident, make sure the lawyer has enough experience handling all types of auto accident cases (pedestrian, motorcycle, truck, etc.).
Reputation is key. Opposing insurance companies will research your lawyer and identify prior cases the lawyer has worked on. If the lawyer has a bad reputation, or worse, has had prior ethics complaints, find someone else. Call the Disciplinary Board of the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania at 717-231-3380 to find out whether a lawyer is in good standing.
Satisfaction of Former Auto Accident Clients
Lastly, before making a decision to hire the lawyer, you should speak to at least 2 prior auto accident clients. The lawyer you’re considering should be able to provide you with the names and contact info of at least 2-3 prior auto accident clients. You want to be sure that the lawyer will treat you with respect and return your calls. You are the boss, don’t let a lawyer treat you as though you are anything less.