Some Facts about Car Accidents

Oct 18

A number of individuals, who have always been inclined to question all accepted opinions (skeptics as they are called), doubt the veracity of the story which says that in 1895 there were only two cars in the state of Ohio . . . and these collided into each other.

This story appears in two separate posts: in the November 24, 1967 issue of the Life Magazine, and in a website called AF&G All Fun and Games (where over 1,900 useless, though fun and true, facts on almost about anything in the United States are either mentioned or discussed).

Other than the story above, here are additional facts relating to car accidents that are worth mentioning:

  • The first traffic fatality occurred in 1899. It involved a man in NYC who was killed by a car;
  • In 1902, Baker Torpedo, the first electric car that enclosed both the driver and the platform in its aerodynamic body was taken for a speed test. It went as fast as 80 mph before crashing and
  • killing two spectators;
  • In Sweden, on September 3, 1967, a legislation that was passed in 1963, which ordered a switch to right-hand traffic, took effect. Contrary to what so many said that the switch is murderous, highway fatalities, surprisingly dropped over 50%. How? Everyone drove carefully – both hands were kept on the wheel, both eyes were focused on the road and nobody wanted to fight for the way;
  • In the U.S., analysis of fatal car crashes show almost consistently that the more cars there are on the road, the more accidents and fatalities there are too; and,
  • A study conducted by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) on car crashes show that at least 90% of the millions of accidents occurring every year are due to driver error or driver fault which include drunk-driving (which is the leading cause of car accidents), reckless driving, overspeeding and distracted driving.

Law firms all across the U.S. that handle personal injury or car accident cases, the Hankey Law Office is one example, know for a fact that, to a victim, a car accident can mean trauma, painful injuries, damaged property, costly medical treatment and, probably, lost wages (if the victim is employed) due to the required period for recovery or rehabilitation.

The unexpected financial concerns due to the injury and the need to make the liable driver realize the importance of observing road safety rules make it necessary for a car accident victim to pursue a legal action to be able to claim compensation and to remind the at fault driver of his/her legal duty on the road.

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File an SR-22 Fast and Easy and Right in the Comfort or Your Home

Sep 15

There is a special type of insurance, called the SR-22, which may be required of drivers under certain circumstances. These circumstances include a driver being:

• Issued a license suspension or revocation;
• Cited for reckless driving or Driving under the influence (DUI);
• Cited for multiple traffic violations within just one year;
• Involved in an accident without auto insurance; or,
• Caught driving without auto liability insurance.

Any of these circumstances can result to a driver having his or her license suspended or revoked and the only way to immediately restore his or her license and driving privileges is by filing an SR-22.

An SR-22 is actually just a form or a certificate which a car insurance company is required to send to a state’s Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) to indicate that the person, whose license has been suspended, already has the required insurance coverage. For uninsured drivers, filing an SR-22 is not so easy to obtain since this cannot be filed unless they first purchase an auto insurance policy. Another burden for them is that, besides having to purchase an insurance policy, which they considered too costly before, being required to file an SR-22 will still make insurance coverage more expensive for them because, this time, their chosen insurance firm will tag them as “high-risk” drivers, that is, drivers who are more likely to get involved in an accident.

The requirement to carry an SR-22 filing usually lasts for three years; for DUI cases, though, a judge may extend it to five years. This means 36 months or 3 years of having to pay more expensive premiums – a real strain on their budget, more so if it is extended to five years.

While insurance firms find means to make policies more expensive, this will not be the case if you make your SR-22 filing with an independent car insurance company. By being independent, these car insurance firms are able to help and protect customers’ interests rather than insurance providers’ interests.

According to the website of Second Gear Magazine, with some independent car insurance firms, all you need to do is ask for free SR-22 quotes on line. After receiving and choosing from as many as a dozen free car insurance quotes you have the option to purchase the policy (that meets your needs, your state’s codes, and your budget) and make your SR-22 filing through this independent firm. Once you make your payment, the firm will submit your SR-22 certificate to your car insurance provider which, in turn, will send it to the Secretary of State electronically. As soon as it is accepted, you will get a copy of the certificate from your insurer. It is important to note that if you let your coverage lapse for any reason, or if you cancel your policy before at least 3 years have passed, your license will become suspended all over again.

No car insurance firm, other than independent ones, will be able to get you insured and have an SR-22 filing within minutes, without hassle and with no paperwork. You can even do everything right in the comfort of your home.

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Top Contributing Factors in Boating and Watercraft Accidents

Mar 24

One may be led to think that boating is the least risky of all recreational activities because even if a person were to fall overboard, how will landing in water hurt him or her. On the contrary, there are proper safety procedures that boat operators and passengers need to observe, otherwise, they may find themselves in a really bad situation.

One important task of the U.S. Coast Guard is to prepare a yearly statistical record which should contain all boating accidents in the US and the most common causes of these accidents. Based on US Coast Guard’s 2014 record, of the 11,804,002 recreational vessels registered in the US in 2014, about 4,064 were involved in recreational boating accidents. These accidents, in turn, resulted to 2,678 injuries and 610 deaths. The top five contributing factors in accidents were operator inattention, improper lookout, operator inexperience, excessive speed and machinery failure. With regard to fatal accidents, the leading known contributing factor was alcohol.

Just like drunk-driving, boating under the influence (BUI) is equally dangerous. Due to this, a 0.08% blood alcohol concentration (BAC) limit is imposed by all states on boat operators. While this BAC limit is just the same as the limit imposed on car drivers, different studies have shown that those who consume alcohol while on sea can be impaired much faster than car drivers due to the type of environment where they are situated as well as the conditions they are exposed to. These conditions include: the boat’s continuous motion and vibration; sea water spray or mist on their faces and bodies; and, the ocean breeze, sun and engine noise. All these plus alcohol and/or illegal drugs can easily affect the vision, coordination, balance, and judgment of all boat passengers. (The BAC limit applies to operators of open motorboats, canoes, kayaks, rowboats and all other water vessels (whether local or foreign) that are sailing on US territorial waters.

When a boating or watercraft accident does occur, many lawyers hired by those who are victims in the accident fail to represent their clients well due to the intricacies of the Maritime law which they are not familiar with. According to the Charleston personal injury attorneys of Clawson & Staubes, LLC: Injury Group, when representing and defending a victim in a boating or watercraft accident, a lawyer needs to be familiar with the unique aspects of general maritime law, like “joint and several liability, pure comparative negligence, seaworthiness doctrine, and pre-judgment interest.” Maritime law, also known as Admiralty law, differs from the laws governing motor vehicle or car accidents. Thus, when seeking representation in an accident that happened at sea, victims should make sure that they are to be represented by someone who is familiar and experienced in the said field of law.

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Truck Accident Causes

Oct 25

Trucks, notably interstate highway ones, will be the lifeblood of the consumer market. Commerce would grind to a halt without these vehicles delivering goods to supermarkets and retail establishments. Nevertheless, it is undeniable that due to the sheer size and speed of those trucks, they pose a significant danger to smaller automobiles that share the route with them.

It is not unimportant that truck drivers are almost always attentive for just about any unfortunate situations including a reckless or preoccupied motorist entering the no- operating into difficulty and zone. Vehicles have big no zones which a responsible motorist should be careful to avoid. Based on the website of the Indianapolis personal injury lawyers of the Hankey Law Office, an encounter from a smaller car and a truck can result in severe injuries to the motorist of the vehicle, regardless of who’s at fault.

For this reason, there are strict rules for their hours-of-service. Regrettably there are regular infringements of those regulations. Tired truck drivers are one of many major reasons for truck accidents.

Being frequently on the road for long exercises can be stressful although truckers have an increased duty-of-care than regular motorists as a result of the automobiles they work. This can cause injuries that seem to be due to drinking and driving; however, perhaps not everything is as they appear. Truckers charged with drunk driving can lose their income as well as their license if convicted, therefore, it truly is very important that they get the proper legal representation to beat the charges.

You may be entitled to compensation for injuries that are significant in the event that you’re associated with a truck injury on account of the negligence of the trucker. Contact a truck injury lawyer in your region for more information about negligence.

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Toxic Exposure

Jun 24

Many don’t consider the likelihood that they will be exposed to a toxic substance. Those things are for action films and super hero back story. Unfortunately, this occurrence is all too common in the average person’s life and rarely results in super powers. Oftentimes, we can find ourselves in areas or buildings in which there are toxic substances that we did not expect of are unaware of.

Common cases of toxic exposure include: asbestos / mesothelioma, benzene, Chinese drywall, lead poisoning, manganese, silicosis, Teflon, toxic birth defects, toxic mold, vinyl chloride. View more detail about toxic substances.

Often times, the word “toxins” and the word “poisons” are used interchangeably. While these terms are very similar, there is a major difference between them that makes them distinctive. Toxins refer to harmful substances that are produced through a biological process. Poisons do not need to be produced by a biological process. By this classification, venom from a snake, which is often referred to as a “poison” would actually be considered a toxin.

All of the substances listed above are considered toxins and happen by natural processes. These substances can exist in our very homes, the places we generally think of as the most safe and secure. It is important, therefore, that property owners are consistently vigilant about the safety of their premises with regard to toxic exposure. As buildings age, these problems can emerge and prove harmful to the residents.

Toxic exposure to certain harmful chemicals or bacteria can be extremely harmful and in some cases, life threatening. Unfortunately these cases often could have been prevented. Many times, these cases are the fault of the carelessness or neglect of the product manufacturer of another party. In these cases the victim of such an injury may be owed certain damages.

View more about these kinds of situations.

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How You Can Be Exposed to PCBs Today

Apr 30

Polychlorinated biphenyls or PCBs have long been banned in the United States. While PCBs have proven to be useful for a variety of industrial and commercial purposes, they ultimately caused too much environmental destruction to be beneficial.

Even when more than three decades have passed since the U.S. federal government ensured the cessation of PCB production, its lingering effects can still be felt today. Unfortunately, there are plenty of ways that people can still be exposed to PCBs and suffer from health risks associated with the toxic chemical compounds. For one, there are still a number of older model transformers, capacitors, and other electrical equipment that contain PCBs. Older appliances like TVs and refrigerators also made use of PCBs as an effective coolant and insulator, as well as some construction materials that might be present in residential and commercial buildings. In these cases, people can become exposed to PCBs when small amounts contaminate the air. This is especially alarming for indoor areas, where the air is insulated and the PCB levels can rise. PCBs can also leak out from the aforementioned sources and risk individuals to skin exposure.

People can also be exposed to PCBs through other sources in their surroundings. According to the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry, small traces of PCBs can be found almost anywhere—air, soil, sediments, water, and even animals. Most of the time, these sources won’t contain enough PCBs to cause alarming effects. However, for areas that were most devastated by Monsanto PCBs pollution, people still face the risk of ingesting fish, meat, and dairy products that are contaminated by PCBs. Residents living in areas like Anniston, Alabama—the city where the Monsanto chemical plant was located—can also be exposed to PCBs through ingesting contaminated water.

Some individuals can also be exposed to PCBs in their own workplace. For individuals working in construction or maintenance, the threat of PCB exposure can be particularly significant. Workers who will need to come into contact with older equipment containing PCBs can suffer considerable health conditions caused by the toxic chemicals.

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Insurance Companies have the Upper Hand

Mar 25

It is a little known fact that when someone wins in a personal injury lawsuit, it is not usually the defendant that pays the damages, but its insurance carriers. This is especially true when it comes to suing big companies or healthcare providers, but it can also be true for homeowners and regular business folk. Click here for a full list of the types of personal injury cases.

Under normal circumstances, like say a car accident, the insurance company investigates the claim and if everything is in order pays for the damages or injuries to the extent of the coverage. However, when it comes to big money such as a dangerous drug lawsuit, defective tire case, or a hazardous substance claim, then insurance companies will want to minimize their exposure. The most common (and effective) way to do this is to deny and defend.

Insurance companies are successful because they take in much more money than they pay out. As such, it is their prime directive to deny as many claims as they can past a certain monetary level. Claimants can appeal the case, but it can take a lot of time and effort, and many simply give up.

In cases where the plaintiff is persistent, or hires a lawyer to pursue the case, the insurance company exerts its own legal muscles. Most large insurance companies have in-house lawyers that are expert in making it very difficult for a plaintiff to prove liability. Unless the plaintiff’s lawyer is experienced in personal injury cases in the state, it can be very difficult for the plaintiff to win a case.

If you sustained serious injury because of the negligence of others, you may be eligible to claim compensation for your losses. However, you could be facing an uphill climb if your claim is challenged by the insurance company. Hire an experienced personal injury lawyer to represent you against insurance company lawyers.

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