Car Accidents, Personal Injuries and the I-10
The interstate between Lafayette and Baton Rouge is hugely important to all of us, as an important corridor that transports citizens and goods every day. Let’s face it, we all drive on the interstate to and from Baton Rouge and have been stuck in traffic due to an accident. And too many people are involved in serious car, truck and vehicle accidents on this stretch.
The sad truth is that the interstate can be a very dangerous roadway and the site of numerous accidents, many resulting in personal injury, even fatal car accidents. According to car accident data provided by the Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development, there are nearly 800 crashes a year on a deadly stretch of I-10 between the Atchafalaya Basin and the Mississippi River Bridge.
The high incidence of accidents, especially rear-end car accidents, plus wrecks involving big rigs, 18 wheelers and trucks, occur because too many drivers are distracted and not paying attention. Distracted driving, especially texting while driving is a big problem.
There are serious legal consequences for not following the rules of the road. The lawyers at Joseph Joy and Associates, have decades of experience representing clients who have sustained serious injuries after their vehicle was rear-ended, in violation of Louisiana law:
LA Rev Stat § 32:81 Following vehicles
A. The driver of a motor vehicle shall not follow another vehicle more closely than is reasonable and prudent, having due regard for the speed of such vehicle and the traffic upon and the condition of the highway.
B. The driver of a motor truck, when traveling upon a highway outside a business or residential district, shall not follow another motor truck within four hundred feet, but this shall not be so construed as to prevent one motor truck from overtaking and passing another.
C. Motor vehicles being driven upon any roadway outside of a business or residence district in a caravan or motorcade, whether or not towing other vehicles, shall be so operated as to allow sufficient space between each such vehicle or combination of vehicles so as to enable any other vehicle to enter and occupy such space without danger. This provision shall not apply to a funeral procession.
The video below was produced by the Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development. It is featured below since it has such helpful and interesting information on how to prevent accidents and injuries on the I-10 between Lafayette and Baton Rouge.
Transcript: We’re on I-10 between the Atchafalaya Basin bridge and Baton Rouge. In this area, the interstate has too many crashes, many of which can be prevented. State Police says it takes an average person 5 seconds to check a text message while driving. If they are going 70 miles an hour then in 5 seconds you’ve traveled 515 feet. Then if you look up and see danger, you react, the distance is going to take you 852 ft. You combine that and that means that it is going to take a distracted driver nearly two-tenths of a mile to stop their vehicle and that’s just not enough time. The stats show 800 crashes a year happen every year between Lafayette and Baton Rouge and 55% are rear-end crashes. 22% are same direction sideswipes that means that 77% of these crashes, a total of 616 crashes, occur because people are not paying attention, driving too fast or following too closely or tailgating. So as you drive in from Baton Rouge you are going from rural swamp land where it is easy to get in the zone and not pay attention. Now you’re coming into an urban area and during peak hours, going eastbound, there will be backups on the west side of the Mississippi River Bridge. So expect delays.
As you approach Baton Rouge, you will notice signs that say be prepared to stop. These signs have flashing beacons. You will also see to dynamic message boards and a speed reduction sign from the 70 to 60 miles per hour. These all signal. There are rumble strips on the right hand side in the case you do get distracted and veer off a little off the road. It will make a loud noise and you will know to get back on. On the left side, there are cable barriers that have prevented many accidents. They are also for those who run off the road. It will keep you from going into the other lane and safety measures.. There is also the Louisiana 511 app. You can use that hands-free and they will provide you update on congestions and road closures. We also a partner with Waze so you can plug that in Bluetooth and get the sound and it will tell you when there is a road closure or traffic up ahead. So you can be prepared to stop and avoid increasing these number of crashes. Don’t tailgate, drive the speed limit, stay hands-free, buckle up. Most importantly drive safely for yourself and others and enjoy your travels through Louisiana.
At Joseph Joy & Associates, we have recovered millions of dollars in damages for clients who have been seriously injured due to the negligence of someone else. If you have the unfortunate experience of being seriously involved in an accident involving a car, truck or big rig, give us a call: 337-232-8123 or visit us at 900 S. College Rd., Ste. 204, Lafayette, LA.