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Louisiana governor car accident sends state trooper to hospital

It seems that no Louisianan can really escape the possibility of a car accident. Even when great precautions are taken -- like driving with a convoy -- car accidents may be inevitable. A recent car accident that occurred near Baton Rouge confirms this reality.

Governor Bobby Jindal was driving on Nicholson Drive, south of downtown Baton Rouge. With him were two unmarked police cars. This additional protection did not prevent an auto accident, however. The accident investigation reveals that a driver of a rental vehicle made an illegal U-turn, side swiping the governor's vehicle, causing the other vehicle to crash into a utility pole. A state trooper was in this second vehicle, and needed to be taken to a nearby hospital. He sustained minor injuries.

Although he only suffered minor injuries, the state trooper likely incurred substantial medical expenses. Sometimes an individual's medical insurance covers such unexpected expenses. Other times, medical expenses may not be covered, and it is necessary to find someone who can cover the costs.

Louisiana law usually allows an injured car accident victim to seek recovery from the driver who caused the accident. In the governor's story, this means that the state trooper may be able to seek compensation from the driver who made the illegal U-turn.

There is a twist in the case, however. The driver was apparently in a rental vehicle. This fact may present issues of who is liable to the state trooper, and whose insurance will come into play -- the driver or the rental car company. Usually, an individual's personal auto insurance will provide coverage for accidents that occur while that individual is driving a rental car. Of course, if the driver does not have insurance this will not be possible. Luckily, the rental car company may also provide insurance.

A person injured in a car accident caused by a rental car drive should identify these different possibilities about insurance coverage. It can help determine from whom to seek compensation for medical expenses and other damages.

Source: WWL-TV, "Gov. Jindal's SUV involved in Baton Rouge traffic crash," March 17, 2013.

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