Articles Posted in Automobile Accident

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Every state in America now applies two statutory offenses for driving under the influence of alcohol. The first is known by three different names: driving under the influence (DUI), driving while intoxicated or while impaired (DWI), and operating a vehicle while intoxicated or impaired (OWI). This offense is usually based on an officer’s observations (e.g., driving behavior, sobriety tests, slurring of speech, etc.) The second offense is known as the “illegal per se” statute, which refers to driving with a blood alcohol concentration above 0.08 g/dL. Since 2002, every state in the Union has agreed that a BAC of 0.08 makes a driver alcohol-impaired, but some studies have shown that operators have driving deficiencies at even lower levels. (Alcohol Alert!)
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Our central and peripheral nervous systems (CNS & PNS) and their various functions are incredibly complex, and this is something that we often take for granted. The CNS (comprised of our brain & spinal cord) and PNS (enclosed bundles of axons, or nerves) are responsible for transmitting neurological signals to and from various parts of the body in order to control and coordinate our voluntary and involuntary actions. Despite all the progress that has been made in modern medicine and public health, we remain at the tip of the proverbial iceberg when it comes to our understanding of our own cognitive function; however, one thing is clear: keeping these neurological processes in good working order is directly correlated with our quality of life.
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Frontal air bags first became a standard automotive safety feature in the 1980s, and while they were certainly a good start, original air bags still had some functional issues to work out in order to improve occupant safety. They deployed in a uniform manner regardless of the occupant, and this frequently caused injuries, and in rare cases even fatalities among children and smaller adults.

Air bags have come a long way since then, and today the sophisticated sensing systems utilized by advanced frontal air bags are far more efficacious in protecting drivers and front seat passengers. Still, no matter how smart your air bag is, it is important to remember that these devices are only supplemental restraint systems. To ensure that you and your passengers are as safe as possible, there are several other key safety precautions that should be utilized in a complementary fashion:
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Statistics tell us that automobile accident rates differ from age group to age group, and when it comes to traffic collisions injury rates are subject to the fluctuations, especially in the case of older drivers. According to data collected by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, drivers and passengers over the age of 75 are much more likely to sustain injuries and die in less serious crashes.

As a person ages, their body naturally grows more fragile, and this not only makes them more susceptible to accident injuries, it also reduces the chance of them recovering from their injuries. Even when older drivers are able to make a full recovery, the process is slower and more arduous. In 2014, many members of the baby boomer generation are approaching their 60s and 70s, and that means there will be more elderly drivers on the road in the years to come. With this in mind, it is important to educate ourselves and do what we can to reduce preventable injuries and fatalities among our older vehicle occupants. Here are just a few of the ways that people can make a positive impact:
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Everyone loves going on summer vacations, but before your fun in the sun can start you have to get from point A to point B safely. Every year during June, July and August, thousands of families hit the road for long trips in order to get to their vacation spots, but not all of them take the proper safety precautions to reduce their chance of being involved in a crash. Our car accident lawyers want to ensure that everyone is able to enjoy their summer plans, and we hope that passing along a few important road trip tips will help you and your family do so safely.
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This weekend marks the official beginning of summer. For many of us living in the Midwest, the next few months are a time to travel, go on vacations, and get out of the house for some fun in the sun. Still, while these warm months are certainly some of the most enjoyable, when it comes to traffic fatalities, they are also the most deadly. According to some of the most recent data collected by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS), July featured the single highest number of fatal automobile accidents of any month in 2012, with crashes claiming more than 3,000 lives. August and June were not far behind, ranking as the second and third most dangerous driving months of the calendar year.

But why is summer so dangerous; Beautiful weather, no snow, no sleet, no ice? On the surface, it is hard to understand why summer driving could possibly pose such an issue, but upon closer inspection, it actually makes perfect sense.
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To put it simply, driving a car is a huge responsibility, and it is most likely the most dangerous thing that you will do on a day-to-day basis. Every year about 6 million motor vehicle accidents occur in the United States, and statistics have shown that these crashes will injure some three million drivers and passengers annually, with two thirds of these injuries being permanent. For teen drivers, inexperience, distraction, and a host of other risk factors make getting behind the wheel even more hazardous, with car crashes being the leading cause of death for individuals 14-18 years of age. However, there are several ways that we can all work to help make teens safer and more responsible drivers.

What Parents Can Do-Before your children ever enter driver’s training courses, parents can play an incredibly important role in their safety. First and foremost, be a role model, and allow your kids to witness first hand what good driving is. Once a teen does begin driving, set specific ground rules and restrictions, and hold them accountable if these guidelines are violated. Most importantly, maintain an open and up front dialogue with your kids explaining your rationale for imposing these limits, and discuss the hazards that come with risk factors like distracted and drunk driving. This will allow your child to gain an understanding of these issues on their own terms, making them more likely to make safe driving decisions in their future.
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Throughout the course of the last few decades, a multitude of safety organizations at the federal and state level have launched campaigns to educate the public with regard to the hazards of automobile accidents. As a result, most people are aware that traffic collisions are one of the most common causes of death in the United States, and this is a very good thing. However, with health and safety at the forefront of most educational initiatives the economic impacts of these accidents are often overlooked.

Earlier this week, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) published a new study analyzing the economic toll and societal impact of motor vehicle accidents in the United States. According to data presented by the agency, the price tag of these crashes comes out to a staggering $871 billion, including $277 billion in economic costs, or roughly $900 for every American citizen. The NHTSA explained that the additional $594 billion worth of societal harm stemmed from the loss of life, pain, future health related expenses, and overall diminished quality of life suffered by injury victims and their families as a result of motor vehicle accidents.
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When one hears the latest statistics on the rate of seat belt usage in the United States, 87% seems like a good national average. While there can be no doubt that 185 million individuals across the nation using seatbelts is a great thing, in a country of more than 300 million people that other 13% represents a large chunk of the community (approximately 28 million citizens to be exact). Every time someone chooses to ride in a vehicle without buckling up they increase their chance of ending up a statistic, and preventing these avoidable fatalities is the primary goal of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s ‘Click It or Ticket’ campaign. (NHTSA)

Each year during the month of May, law enforcement agencies across the United States aid the NHTSA in conducting their most well-known high-visibility enforcement program, Click it or Ticket, to persuade motorists to utilize all the safety features built into their automobiles. Below are just a few of the injury statistics collected by the U.S. Department of Transportation related to seat-belt usage (or lack thereof).

In 2012, the research from the agency determined that the use of seat belts saved some more than 12,000 lives, and during the past 5 years it is estimated that they have saved more than 60,000.

Of the roughly 22,000 vehicle occupants killed in car accidents during 2012, 52% were not wearing a seat belt or safety restraint at the time of the collision.

The motorists who are killed in nighttime car accidents are more likely to unrestrained (61%) than drivers during the daytime (43%).
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In this day and age, the rapidity of technological advancement is changing the way we live on a daily basis. Many of the things that were dismissed as the stuff of comic book science fiction a few decades ago are now partially, or completely possible; one such technology is Vehicle-to-Vehicle (V2V) Communication, often generalized as “talking cars.” Scientists, engineers, and researchers have been in the process of developing V2V communication systems for many years, and we still have a ways to go before regulators and manufacturers are ready to implement these innovations on a standard basis, but in the mean-time here is a synopsis of what consumers have to look forward to. (National Highway Traffic Safety Administration)

How V2V Works:

The term “talking cars,” refers to technological communication systems that enable automobiles to send and receive pertinent safety information while driving (car-to-car, as well as communicating with traffic signals and other components of roadway infrastructures). The U.S. Department of Transportation, in collaboration with many of the world’s largest automotive manufacturers, plan to utilize Wi-Fi-like wireless technology to notify motorists about potential safety concerns such as adverse roadway conditions or impending collisions, allowing them to take necessary precautions or corrective actions. Connected vehicles will use Dedicated Short Range Communications (DSRC), signals which are secure, reliable, and unlikely to be subject to interference.