Electric Vehicle Accidents

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Can Electric Vehicles Pose a Greater Danger in a Crash?

Despite their advanced safety features, some argue that EVs may pose increased risks in crashes due to factors like high-voltage batteries, which can potentially lead to fires in severe accidents. While manufacturers implement safety measures, this remains a point of contention regarding EV safety.

Electric Vehicle Safety:

Electric vehicles (EVs) are altering the automotive landscape, but concerns persist regarding their safety compared to traditional gas-powered cars. One prominent worry revolves around the potential dangers in accidents, particularly due to the risk of battery explosions. While EVs boast advanced safety features, their unique characteristics, such as rapid acceleration, pose challenges.

If you are involved in a car accident and you require immediate legal assistance, do not hesitate to contact our law office at Amerberg Law Group.

Electric Cars Overview:

EVs differ from traditional cars in significant ways, operating on electric motors fueled by batteries rather than internal combustion engines. These batteries, rechargeable through special equipment or wall outlets, power the vehicle without emitting exhaust or relying on traditional fuel components like fuel lines or tanks.

Electric vehicles (EVs) share many safety features with gas-powered cars, including lane assist, blind spot monitors, and rearview cameras. However, EVs also boast unique safety enhancements tailored to their electric nature including reduced rollover risk, regenerative braking and remote speed controls and adjustments.

Moreover, EVs undergo rigorous crash testing and adhere to stringent safety standards, ensuring they meet the same regulatory requirements as traditional vehicles. For instance, the 2023 Kia EV6 and the 2022 Audi Q4 Sportback E-Tron both boast impressive National Highway Transportation Safety Administration (NHTSA) frontal and side-impact ratings of 5/5, underscoring their commitment to safety excellence.

Electric Cars in Crashes and Risk Assessment:

Despite the numerous benefits offered by electric vehicles (EVs), they also come with notable risks. A prime concern revolves around their reliance on lithium-ion batteries, akin to those utilized in cell phones and laptops.

The inherent issue with lithium-ion batteries lies in their ability to store a substantial amount of energy within a confined space, making them prone to explosion when ignited. Notably, the risk of explosion amplifies with the number of batteries present in an EV, with models like Tesla's containing approximately 7,000 batteries.

The explosive potential of lithium-ion batteries presents significant challenges for first responders, compounded by the fact that these batteries can combust without requiring oxygen. Unlike traditional firefighting methods that rely on depleting oxygen to extinguish flames, such approaches are ineffective when dealing with EV battery fires.

Furthermore, EVs' formidable power and rapid acceleration present another safety concern, catching some drivers off guard and potentially leading to accidents. Studies suggest that EVs are involved in crashes 50% more frequently than their conventional counterparts, underscoring the need for heightened awareness regarding their unique driving dynamics.

Electric Vehicles and General Safety:

While EVs share common safety features with conventional cars, such as lane assist and blind-spot monitors, they also incorporate unique elements tailored to their electric nature. These include remote speed adjustment, reduced rollover risk due to a lower center of gravity, and regenerative braking, which converts kinetic energy into electricity for braking.

Electric Vehicle Collisions as Pertaining to Day-to-Day Reality:

Several tragic incidents underscore the potential hazards of EV accidents, including fatalities resulting from fires following collisions. In one instance, an EV crash in China claimed four lives, while another accident in Washington resulted in a fatality due to fire. Firefighters noted the difficulty in extinguishing EV battery fires, highlighting the unique challenges they present.

Examining Electric Car Accidents through a Legal Lens:

Regarding liability, several factors come into play when considering electric vehicle (EV) accidents. Firstly, the functionality of advanced safety features within EVs needs evaluation to determine their role in the accident. Any issues with the vehicle's software, batteries, or charging systems could affect liability. Additionally, in cases of malfunctions or defects, the responsibility may lie with the manufacturer, particularly if the accident results from flaws in the EV's design or production. Furthermore, liability could extend to entities responsible for charging stations if accidents occur due to charging malfunctions or electrical issues.

In terms of insurance considerations, specialized coverage may be necessary for EVs due to their unique components, such as the battery pack, which tends to be more costly to repair or replace compared to traditional components found in internal combustion engine vehicles. Battery damage or degradation could significantly impact costs, prompting some insurance policies to offer coverage for battery-related issues, including degradation over time. Moreover, repair expenses for EVs can be higher due to their specialized components, necessitating insurers to account for these increased costs when determining premiums or coverage amounts.

We have the best car accident attorneys in California who will closely review the details of your accident and provide you with immediate, professional legal help and expertise. We will help you determine which party is at fault in the case of your accident. The full compensation will be pursued on your behalf in the most concise and efficient manner.

Choose to win. Choose Amerberg Law Group.

Frequently Asked Questions:

  • Q) Are electric cars generally safe?
    A) Electric cars undergo rigorous safety testing and often include advanced safety features, aligning with modern safety standards.
  • Q) Are electric cars safe in a crash relative to their gas-powered competitors?
    A) In crashes, electric cars typically perform comparably or better than internal combustion engine vehicles, benefiting from design features like lower centers of gravity and enhanced crumple zones.
  • Q) Are electric cars more likely to catch fire relative to their gas-powered competitors?
    A) While any vehicle with a battery carries a fire risk, instances of electric cars catching fire are relatively rare, with manufacturers implementing safety measures to mitigate this risk.

What is an accident?

A traffic accident is defined as an event that occurs during the movement of a vehicle on a road, in which people are injured or killed as a result of the vehicle’s participation. Additionally, an accident is defined as the movement of a vehicle whose participation and movement has caused the material damage of other vehicles, structures, and property.

Accident causes

Let’s investigate some of the most common accident causes:

  • Speeding
  • Driving under the influence
  • Lane splitting
  • Sudden stops
  • Inexperienced drivers
  • Left turn accidents
  • Dangerous road conditions
  • Vehicle defects
  • Hazard on the road
  • Weather conditions


  • Unfortunately, currently Los Angeles leads large cosmopolitan cities in sustaining the highest rate of traffic accidents resulting in injuries and fatal outcomes in the United States.
  • In 2019 alone, according to the LAPD accident data, there were roughly 54,000 collisions reported, 236 reported deaths. This number is only slightly below accident data from 2018.
  • Compared to the previous 5 years, traffic collision deaths have risen an alarming 32%, rendering pedestrian groups the most vulnerable accident victims
  • LAPD has categorized over 25,300 crashes as hit-and-runs.
  • Over the past few years, pedestrian fatalities rose dramatically by 69%
  • It is important to understand that fleeing the collision scene renders the collision a felony even in the case it which the collision was not the driver’s fault.
  • The main reasons for the dramatic increase in crash incidents were cited as resulting from DUIs and texting

What to do in a car accident?

When you get into a car accident, you might be subject to a variety of negative emotions, and frustrations, depending on the severity of the collision. It is important to urgently pull yourself together (if possible) and pursue the following course of action promptly:

1. Move to a safe area right away (if you can)
Move your vehicle / bicycle out of the way in order to avoid creating a scenario in which further harm or damage can be sustained. The road shoulder offers a safe space for you to relocate your vehicle. If your car or vehicle is difficult or impossible to move, due to the circumstances of the collision, it is imperative that you turn on your emergency lights to let other drivers know that you are likely going to be stationed at the site of your collision for an extended period.
2. Stop your car and get out of it
Ensure that your car has come to a complete stop and is no longer moving. This can be done by turning the car off and putting it into park mode or using the hand break if you’re driving a manual. Take a deep breath and look around to make sure your surroundings are safe prior to opening your door and exiting your vehicle. Flares and other safety items may also come in handy in this situation.
3. Check on other people
Walk over to the other parties involved (drivers, passengers, and pedestrians) to make sure they are not hurt. If someone is injured, it is imperative to call 911. A person may be severely injured even if showing no significant external signs o injury other than general dizziness and bruises. It is best to call emergency services to avoid a catastrophic outcome.
4. Report to the police
It is always best to have a police officer arrive to the scene, which will enable you to prove important details in the future when filing the collision claim with the insurance company. Be careful not to immediately admit fault or place the blame on the involved drivers at the scene. It is at the discretion and jurisdiction of the police officer to adequately judge the situation and conclude whose fault it really is. There are cases in which police are not required to arrive at the scene of the accident; this is normally the case when there are no injuries sustained by either party. If you experience this scenario, proceed to simply reporting the accident to your local DMV.
5. Information exchange
Try to gather as much information as possible according to the list below:
  • Name of the driver and the passengers
  • License plate number
  • Insurance information
  • All involved vehicles makes and models
  • Accident location
  • The police officer’s name or badge number
6. Documenting the scene
Most likely you have your smartphone with a camera, use it to take a few pictures of the accident. This will be a great addition to the other claim details.
7. File your insurance claim
All these steps will make the process much smoother and less stressful.

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