Two black sedans on road after car accident

Hydroplaning Leads to Deaths in Floyd County Auto Accident

On January 30, 2023, an auto accident occurred in Floyd County, Kentucky when an automobile driven by a county employee hydroplaned into a county truck towing a plow. The automobile contained a mother, twin teen daughters and an infant. Reportedly, two in the vehicle died as a result of the injuries sustained in the accident. Hydroplaning occurs due to water on the roadway and speed from the vehicle causing the vehicle to be lifted up off the pavement. It is difficult to control a vehicle that is hydroplaning.

Can Family Members Injured in An Auto Accident Make Claims Against the Driver Who Is a Member of Their Immediate Family?

In Kentucky, the simple answer to this question is “Yes.” There are some states that prohibit this type of claim. These states have a “guest statute” that prevents a passenger from making a claim against a driver that is a family member unless the driver acts willfully or wantonly in their driving conduct. Indiana is one of the few states that have a guest statute and it applies to immediate family members and hitchhikers. It would not cover a friend or 2nd level relative like a cousin. The reason guest statutes exist is politics. The insurance companies have strong political influence in Indiana and are able to pass laws that financially benefit the insurance companies.

In the tragic Floyd county accident, described above, any of the injured or estates of the deceased passengers can make a claim against the driver of the vehicle for negligence in running into the truck. If the accident occurred in Indiana, none of the injured or deceased could make a claim against the driver due to the guest statute.

How to Avoid Hydroplaning in Your Automobile?

Hydroplaning occurs when a tire encounters more water than it can scatter. Water pressure in the front of the wheel pushes water under the tire and the tire is then separated from the road surface by a thin film of water and loses traction. The result is loss of steering, braking and power control. Rubber tires have grooves that are designed to channel water from beneath the tire to minimize the chance of hydroplaning. If your tires are worn, then hydroplaning can occur on roadways with just a little water.

In order to avoid hydroplaning, you need to do the following:

1.    Keep your tires properly inflated.

2.    Rotate and replace worn tires. The depth or your tread determines how much water it can disperse.

3.    Slow down when the roads are wet. The faster you drive the harder it is for your tires to scatter the water.

4.    Look for and avoid standing water on the roadways.

5.    Avoid driving on outer lanes where water tends to accumulate.

6.    Try to drive in the car tracks of the cars in front of you.

7.    Do no use cruise control.

8.    Avoid hard braking.

9.    Avoid hard turning.

If your car hydroplanes, the best thing you can do is not panic and begin jerking the steering wheel. You should take your foot off the gas and gently brake once you feel contact with the road returning. It is a scary feeling. It is like hitting a patch of ice where you have no control. Ride it out until your vehicle reestablishes contact with the roadway.

Contact Kentucky Auto Accident Lawyer

The circumstances, in this unusual auto accident in Floyd county, will require the services of an experienced Kentucky auto accident attorney to investigate the cause of the accident and maximize all benefits available to the victims and their families. Matthew Troutman, a Kentucky auto accident lawyer, of the Troutman Law Office has been handling auto accident claims, almost exclusively, since 1986 and has the experience and talent to obtain the best result for the victims in the above car accident.

If you need legal assistance due to a motor vehicle accident, contact Kentucky auto accident attorney Matthew Troutman directly at 859-696-0001 or 502-648-9507 and he will meet with you in the hospital, your home or wherever is convenient for you. He will give you direct access through his cell phone and guide you through the difficult process necessary to obtain the best result possible for you in your car accident claim. To learn more about Kentucky car accident attorney Matthew Troutman and the Troutman Law Office, click here.