Adaptive and LED headlights are now more integrated into automated accident prevention driver safety systems. Society has benefitted from back up cameras, blind spot detectors, lane warnings, and even forward collision systems. But what happens when technology fails or combines with the negligence of others to kill or maim on our roadways? Welcome to our educational resource dedicated to understanding adaptive and LED headlight-related accidents in Los Angeles, CA. Here, our personal injury attorneys provide victims with valuable information about these tragic car accidents and the legal aspects surrounding them. The expert attorneys at our law firm can assist you in seeking justice and compensation for these serious injuries or wrongful death motor vehicle accidents in Los Angeles.
So if you are having problems with insurance companies and others proving your headlight accident claim, this is the article you need to read with the resources you need. Ultimately, our adaptive and LED headlight defect accident lawyers will offer you a free consultation. A legal expert will compassionately discuss your rights and obtain compensation for your wreck.
Introduction to Adaptive and LED Headlight Accidents
Adaptive and LED headlights have become increasingly popular due to their enhanced visibility and energy efficiency. However, car accidents involving these headlights have made headlines in recent news stories, particularly in Los Angeles County, CA. Authorities say these car accidents can result from various factors, such as glare, driver distraction, and technical malfunctions.
The most experienced car accident attorney at our law firm, Michael Ehline, will break everything down to assist victims in recovering compensation for out-of-pocket medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering damages claims in Los Angeles personal injury cases.
Determining liability in headlight-related car accident cases can be complex for even the best Los Angeles car accident lawyer. Our legal team specializes in investigating the circumstances of each car accident claim, gathering evidence, and building a strong case to prove negligence in Los Angeles courts. We’ll guide you through the legal process while protecting your rights in all Los Angeles car accidents.
Why Choose Our Car Accident Attorneys?
Our experienced accident attorneys deeply understand the unique challenges posed by headlight-related car accident claims. We have successfully represented numerous clients in Los Angeles and have a proven track record of achieving favorable settlements and verdicts for even the most difficult Los Angeles County car accident claim. Our attorneys in Los Angeles will comprehensively investigate the adaptive driving beam headlights car crash, including analyzing the headlights’ functionality and any contributing factors.
We won’t hesitate to file a personal injury lawsuit if the insurance adjuster gets too cheeky. Rest assured. Our trial lawyers will take steps to ensure all Southern California automobile accident victims receive fair compensation from the other party’s insurance company for their Los Angeles auto accident cases.
Can Faulty Headlights Contribute to Accidents?
Yes, malfunctioning headlights can lead to reduced visibility and contribute to a car crash. But be careful, as insurance adjusters will try and blame the manufacturer 100% to avoid paying the portion of fault caused by their own insured. This is another reason to hire our law group to pursue the other party’s insurance company in most car accidents. This is a prime way to assure a fair settlement from the other driver, especially if you have significant injuries. Our local car accident attorneys are ready to take your call today anywhere in Los Angeles, California.
In a 2018 report by Slate, John Bullough, director of the Light and Health Research Center at Mount Sinai Hospital in New York, highlights three significant concerns related to driving with excessively bright headlights:
- SUVs and Pickups: Bullough pointed out that SUVs and pickup trucks have higher bodies, resulting in headlights positioned at greater heights. This configuration can lead to these lights shining directly into the eyes of individuals in lower cars or pedestrians.
- Bluer LED Headlights: Newer cars often come equipped with bluer LED headlights that might seem even brighter to many people, potentially causing discomfort or glare while driving at night.
- Headlight Adjustment: Bullough noted that some state vehicle inspections neglect to properly adjust the position of headlights, which can become misaligned due to regular driving, contributing to overly bright headlights.
A new technology called the “adaptive driving beam” aims to address these concerns. This technology is designed to enhance visibility for drivers at night, which could lead to improved traffic safety and a reduction in car accidents caused by headlights that are too bright. This advancement could potentially create a safer driving environment for everyone on the road.
More About Adaptive Headlights
Adaptive headlights, designed to improve visibility during turns and curves, are generally regulated by laws related to vehicle lighting and safety. Let’s look at what personal injury attorney Michael Ehline says about a typical auto accident case involving headlight blindness car accidents.
In Los Angeles, potential headlight regulations might include:
- Proper Functionality: Vehicles equipped with adaptive headlights must ensure that the system is properly functioning and well-maintained to obviate car accidents and personal injury claims.
- Glare Mitigation: Glare is a leading cause of crashes. The system should be designed to reduce glare to oncoming drivers and vehicles in adjacent lanes, especially when the vehicle turns. This can ensure you see red lights and other traffic signals instead of being blinded.
- Use of High Beams: Los Angeles drivers should follow regulations regarding when to use high beams, as adaptive headlights may include automatic high-beam control to avoid being injured in a car accident.
More About LED Headlights
LED headlights are known for their brightness and clarity, but they must adhere to certain regulations to prevent excessive glare and ensure road safety in Los Angeles:
- Brightness Limitations: LED headlights should not be excessively bright to the point where they blind or distract other drivers on the road.
- Proper Alignment: LED headlights must be properly aligned to prevent aiming too high and causing glare for oncoming drivers.
- Color Regulations: Some jurisdictions have restrictions on the color of headlights. White or bluish-white lights are often allowed, while colors like red and blue are typically reserved for emergency vehicles.
- High Beams and Low Beams: Drivers must adhere to regulations about when to use high beams (full intensity) and when to switch to low beams (dimmed intensity).
- Energy Efficiency: LED headlights consume less energy than traditional bulbs, resulting in improved fuel efficiency and reduced strain on the vehicle’s electrical system.
- Longevity: LED headlights have a longer lifespan than halogen bulbs, potentially lasting for the vehicle’s lifetime.
- Brightness and Clarity: LEDs emit a bright, white light that closely resembles natural sunlight, providing better visibility for the driver and reducing eye strain during nighttime driving.
- Instant Illumination: LED headlights reach full brightness almost instantly, which is especially helpful for safety in situations that require quick reactions, such as sudden stops or turns.
- Design Flexibility: LED technology allows for creative headlight designs, giving automakers more freedom to incorporate unique styling elements into their vehicles.
- Reduced Heat Emission: LED headlights produce less heat than traditional bulbs, which can help prevent damage to surrounding components and reduce the risk of fire.
Both adaptive and LED headlights contribute to enhanced driving safety by providing better illumination and visibility, especially in challenging driving conditions. However, it’s important to note that while these technologies offer significant benefits, they can also present technical challenges and potential malfunctions that may impact road safety.
Local, State, and Federal Laws Dealing With Headlight Glare
For the most accurate and current information regarding adaptive and LED headlight traffic laws and regulations in Los Angeles, it’s advisable to consult the following sources:
California Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) and Dimming Headlights?
The California DMV provides information about vehicle lighting regulations and other traffic laws specific to the state.
California Vehicle Code 24409 VC mandates the proper use of vehicle headlights to ensure road safety. Specifically, this code stipulates that drivers must dim their headlights from high beams to low beams when approaching or following other vehicles. This measure aims to prevent glare and maintain clear visibility for all drivers on the road.
Vehicle Code Section 24409 States in Part that:
- California Vehicle Code 24409 VC outlines regulations on vehicle headlights, specifically addressing the requirement for drivers to dim their headlights when approaching or following other vehicles. Additionally, this code establishes penalties for non-compliance, points accumulation on driving records, potential license suspension, available legal defenses, and consequences for disregarding traffic tickets related to headlight violations.
California law requires drivers to dim their lights when:
- California Vehicle Code 24409 VC details the regulations for the proper use of vehicle headlights, specifically addressing the requirements for dimming headlights during various scenarios to ensure safe driving conditions. This code emphasizes the distribution of light and composite beam necessary for visibility during darkness and the distances at which headlights should be dimmed when approaching or following other vehicles.
According to the California Department of Motor Vehicle (DMV), the law requires you to use your headlights under the following conditions:
According to the California Department of Motor Vehicle (DMV), there are specific situations where using your headlights is required to ensure safe driving.
Here’s when you should have your headlights on:
- Bad Weather: When the weather is cloudy, rainy, snowy, or foggy, especially when approaching busy and dark intersections. (make sure to use your windshield wipers in rough weather conditions.)
- Frosty Mornings: Ice or fog might be on other drivers’ windows on chilly mornings.
- Poor Visibility: Whenever conditions like clouds, rain, snow, dust, smoke, or fog make it hard for you to see other vehicles. Remember, other drivers might struggle to see you too.
- Country or Mountain Roads: When driving on small country or mountain roads, even on sunny days. This helps other drivers notice you and could prevent head-on collisions.
- Getting Attention: When necessary, flicking your lights can help get another driver’s attention for safety reasons.
However, it’s important not to misuse your high-beam headlights. Using them when it’s not needed might actually be against the law.
So, make sure you use your headlights properly, especially in challenging weather or visibility conditions, to help keep the roads safe for everyone. Imagine you were hurt in a car crash because another driver was carelessly using their super bright high-beam headlights. If that happens, you could have a chance to get money to cover your losses by taking legal action.
Los Angeles Department of Transportation (LADOT) May Also Have Municipal Codes
The LADOT may have local ordinances or regulations pertaining to vehicle lighting that apply within the city limits. Gathering as much evidence as possible is crucial in establishing liability for a car accident and recovering money for property damage. This is the most important thing your Los Angeles car accident lawyers can do after forming an attorney-client relationship besides telling you to keep your mouth shut.
Lawyers should deal with the deplorable insurance adjuster and the at-fault motorists, not the injured victims. The same goes for litigation. All injured people should do is heal. That’s their job!
This evidence can include:
- Accident Scene Information: Photographs of the car accident scene, vehicle positions, skid marks (evidence of speeding), road conditions, and any relevant landmarks can provide insights into how the accident occurred.
- Vehicle Damage: Examining the damage to the vehicles involved in a car accident can help recreate the sequence of events leading up to the collision and prompt the other side to settle early.
- Eyewitness Accounts: Statements from witnesses who saw the car accident happen can provide valuable perspectives on what occurred. These are especially handy with intersection collisions where there is a dispute over fault in such cases. Sometimes an unbiased party is vital to your advocate when liability is disputed in fatalities.
- Police Reports: Official reports created by law enforcement officers at the scene often include important details about the car accident, including the defendant’s license plate number and witness statements. The officers would likely document if alcohol played a role and the officer’s judgment over fault and road conditions.
Steps to Take After a Defective Headlight Accident
After an accident, your safety and well-being are top priorities.
- Seek medical attention immediately if needed.
- If you’re able, gather evidence such as photos, witness contact information, and any relevant details about the headlights involved. Document the situation and inform law enforcement when they arrive at the scene.
- Report the accident to law enforcement and your insurance company and
- Get the police report number for your lawyer and the other driver’s insurance company: If you were involved in an accident on a California highway, you can ask the California Highway Patrol for a copy of the traffic collision investigation report by going to the CHP office or mailing in a CHP 190, Application for Release of Information, and a copy of your driver’s license. A CHP report can cost between $10 and $40, depending on the number of pages printed.
When someone drives recklessly with blinding high-beam lights, they might cause an accident. The automaker may also be liable when technology contributes to this due to a malfunction. In California, the law follows the idea of “comparative fault.” This means that responsibility for an accident can be shared among all drivers involved.
In some cases, one driver might be entirely at fault. In others, the courts might decide that multiple drivers or parts makers share the blame for the accident. If you’re the one who got hurt, you can try to get money for your damages through a civil claim. You can even hire a paralegal and go to small claims court for smaller cases. Either way, there are upsides and downsides, and you need to prove your case against all liable parties or risk minimum coverage under a single insurance policy.
Here’s what that means:
- Financial Damages include medical costs, car repair costs, and even money for your pain and suffering. These documents are key to laying a proper evidentiary foundation as you talk to the court or the other party’s insurance company.
- Civil Claim: You can file a civil claim against the driver who misused their high-beam lights or the manufacturer who built the defective technology. This means you’re saying they’re responsible for your physical and emotional pain and other losses you suffered from the car accident.
- Negligence: You’d argue that the vehicle maker or other driver was careless (negligent) by misusing their high beams when they shouldn’t have. Their actions caused the car accident, so they should pay for the visible and hidden damages they caused.
- Compensation: If the court agrees with your claim, they might order the other driver or automaker, or both, to pay you money to make up for the harm they caused. Speaking to an expert lawyer in Los Angeles can make a huge difference in your return.
Let’s Look at this a little deeper. Determining liability in headlight-related accidents can be a complex process that involves analyzing various factors to determine who was at fault for the car accident case.
Here are some key steps and considerations when determining liability in these types of accidents:
Driver Behavior and Actions
Determining whether any driver involved in the car accident acted negligently or violated traffic laws is crucial. Again, the manufacturer will also be on the hook if the headlights malfunction.
Consider factors such as:
- Speed: Was any driver exceeding the speed limit or driving too fast for the conditions? Did the technology fail due to faulty speed sensors?
- Visibility: Were headlights functioning properly, and were they being used appropriately for the conditions? Did the vehicle come with a proper warning as to conditions they may fail?
- Distracted Driving Car Accident: Was either driver distracted by using a phone, adjusting the radio, or engaging in other activities that took their attention off the road? Was the technology distracted by lights, strange colors, or some other glitch?
- Right of Way: Did any driver fail to yield the right of way or ignore traffic signals or signs? Did the technology fail to function properly, blinding others?
If the accident involved faulty or malfunctioning headlights, the condition of the headlights becomes a critical factor in determining liability after a car accident.
This may involve:
- Inspection: Determining whether the headlights were properly maintained, adjusted, and functioning as designed.
- Visibility Impact: Assessing whether the malfunctioning headlights contributed to reduced visibility for the driver or other road users.
In some cases, both drivers and an auto builder might share a degree of fault. This is known as comparative negligence or contributory negligence. In such situations, the degree of fault for each party is assessed, and compensation may be adjusted accordingly.
Generally speaking, reasonable expert opinions can play a significant role in assessing liability. Car accident reconstruction experts, automotive engineers, and forensic specialists can provide insights into factors such as vehicle dynamics, sightlines, and technical issues related to the headlights.
Traffic Laws and Regulations
Local traffic laws and regulations also play a role in determining liability. Violations of traffic laws, such as running a red light or failing to yield, can strongly influence the determination of fault. Remember that liability determinations can vary based on the specific circumstances of each case and the laws in your jurisdiction.
If you’re involved in a headlight-related car accident, seeking legal advice promptly can help you focus on what matters. We can protect your rights and ensure a thorough investigation takes place in your California car accident case against the at-fault driver, parts makers, and anyone else in the chain of commerce.
How long does filing a lawsuit after suffering a headlight-related car accident personal injury claim take?
The statute of limitations varies by location but is generally two years. It’s best to consult with a superior car attorney as soon as possible to understand your specific situation as an injured party.
Damages Our Car Accident Lawyer Recover For a High Beam/Bright Headlight Case?
If you’ve been in a car accident, you might wonder what kind of compensation you can get through a legal case.
Let’s break it down into two main types:
Economic (Special) Damages: These are the more concrete and calculable damages that directly impact finances.
Here’s what they include:
- Medical Expenses (both now and in the future): All the costs of your medical care, from the immediate treatment in the emergency room to the ongoing therapies you might need.
- Emergency Department Treatment: Any costs associated with the immediate care you received in the ER.
- Physical Therapy and Rehabilitation: The expenses related to any treatments that help you recover from your injuries.
- Lost Wages: Money you couldn’t earn because your injuries kept you away from work.
- Lost Earning Capacity: If your injuries affect your ability to make money in the long run, this covers the money you might have made if the car accident hadn’t happened.
- Other Financial Losses: These could be things like property damage or extra costs linked to your injuries.
Non-Economic (General) Damages: These are a bit trickier to put a price tag on because they deal with emotional and quality-of-life impacts.
Here’s what they involve:
- Pain and Suffering: Compensation for the physical pain and emotional distress you’ve gone through.
- Emotional Trauma: Money to address the psychological effects of the accident.
- Reduced Quality of Life: If your life has changed significantly because of the accident, this covers the loss of enjoyment and satisfaction.
- Scarring or Serious Injury: Compensation for any disfigurement or severe injuries.
- Loss of a Limb or Disfigurement: If the accident resulted in losing a limb or other disfigurement, this covers the emotional and physical toll.
If you’re thinking about taking legal action to get compensation for what you’ve been through, our skilled attorneys are here to help. You may be able to sue the automaker for defective technology or another party. You can contact us online or by phone for expert guidance. Your path to justice and financial recovery starts now.
Impact of General Motors SUV Headlights Recall on Road Safety
A recent development involving General Motors (GM) and their SUVs raises concerns about road safety. GM is recalling more than 740,000 small SUVs in the United States due to headlights that can shine “too bright,” causing potentially dangerous glare for drivers coming from the opposite direction.
This issue particularly affects a popular model:
- GMC Terrain SUVs (model years 2010 through 2017)
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), the headlight housings can create reflections that light up certain areas excessively. This excessive brightness could limit other drivers’ visibility, increasing the chances of car accidents and even pedestrian collisions.
A report from Slate revealed that the headlights of the GMC Terrain SUVs have a “weird glitch,” causing them to shine with an intense brightness at the car’s sides, even up to a 45-degree angle. In fact, Slate stated that these headlights could become “three times too bright.”
Legal Professionals for Your Car Accident Case
Consulting with a knowledgeable traffic attorney can help you understand the specific regulations that apply to adaptive and LED headlights in Los Angeles. Ehline Law’s team of car accident lawyers offers top-notch legal representation, and they do it on a contingency fee basis. Please note that regulations can change, and ensuring compliance with the most current laws is important to avoid potential legal issues.
Get a Free Consultation From a Top Adaptive and Led Headlight Accident Law Firm
If you’re involved in a car accident in California due to issues like overly bright headlights, you might be wondering if you need a lawyer to handle your case. Hiring a lawyer, like those from Ehline Law, could be a smart move for several reasons. People who hire private attorneys often secure more significant financial compensation for their claims.
At Ehline Law, we provide free and confidential consultations for car accident injuries. We’ll assess your situation, lay out your legal options, and make sure your rights are safeguarded. Our goal is to pursue the maximum compensation you deserve. We offer our services to car accident victims in California and across the United States. Your safety and justice matter to us.
Don’t let the statute of limitations deadline for filing your car accident injury lawsuit slip away. If you’re a victim of a car, truck, motorcycle, or pedestrian accident, it’s crucial to file your claim right away. Failing to do so might mean losing the chance to get the compensation you deserve for the damages you suffered. It’s important to stand up for your rights after a car accident injury caused by someone else.
Reach out to Ehline Law at (213) 596-9642 for a free consultation. This step could make all the difference in avoiding financial losses after an unfortunate accident that wasn’t your fault. Don’t hesitate to get a free consultation, as you have everything to gain and nothing to lose.