| Read Time: < 1 minute | Car Accidents

2 teen girls die while riding with alleged drunk driver

A horrific car accident in Texas left two teenage girls dead and a young man facing accusations of drunk driving. The girls both went to Atascocita High School, and they were both just 16 years old. According to reports, police have suggested that drunk driving and excessive speed caused the crash. They say that a boy who is himself just 17 years old was behind the wheel of a 2008 Nissan Altima. He had the two 16-year-old girls in the car with him, and one was sitting in the back. He lost control of the car during the drive and it left the roadway, striking multiple trees with enough force to rip the car into two pieces. That initial violent impact killed the girl who was sitting in back. The girl in the front seat initially survived the crash, as did the driver, and she was rushed to the hospital for emergency treatment. Tragically, doctors could not save her and she later passed away from her injuries. The boy who was driving did suffer injuries, but they were described as minor. His life does not appear to have been in jeopardy. A witness saw the car driving shortly before the crash and said that it was going through a zone where the speed limit was just 40 miles per hour, but the witness estimated that it was traveling at 70 or 80 mph. Losing a loved one in a tragic accident changes your life forever. If this happens to you, you may want to look into your rights to financial compensation to help cover the unavoidable costs during this difficult time.

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| Read Time: 2 minutes | Car Accidents

What happens when another driver flees the scene of a crash?

Every day, people across Texas experience motor vehicle collisions. From minor fender-benders that cause primarily cosmetic damage to fatal wrecks that total vehicles, many different kinds of crashes can impact your life, leaving you struggling to get by or even unable to work. Most of the time, the drivers involved in these collisions will exit their vehicle if they aren’t too badly hurt, exchange insurance information and wait for law enforcement to arrive to create a police report about the crash. Unfortunately, some people will flee the scene of the accident by driving off or even exiting a destroyed vehicle and fleeing on foot. If you were in a crash caused by a hit-and-run driver, you should know your rights under Texas law. The other driver had a legal obligation to stay at the scene Under Texas law, a driver involved in a crash has to stop and render aid if the other person is hurt. They should also provide their identification and insurance information to the other party involved in the crash. Even if they strike an unoccupied vehicle, they should leave their information behind so that you can file the necessary insurance claim. When a driver flees the scene of an accident, they break the law. In most cases, leaving the scene of an accident results in Class C misdemeanor charges that carry up to $500 in fines. However, in some cases the person who fled could face a Class B misdemeanor that carries up to six months in jail. Police will try to locate the other driver after the crash In cases that involve property damage or injury to someone, law enforcement officers will typically do all they can to locate the person who fled the scene of the crash. Many times, the impulse to flee is the result of a driver knowing that they violated state laws. Perhaps they were under the influence of drugs or alcohol, or were texting or on social media at the time of the crash. Given that there would be easily identifiable evidence to prove they violated state driving statutes and thereby cause the crash, they might flee the scene in the hope of avoiding the consequences of their actions. Thankfully, there are many ways in which law enforcement officers can identify and locate a driver who flees the scene of a crash. They may use traffic cameras to identify the make and model or even the license plate number of the other driver. Statements by you and other witnesses can also help them identify the vehicle or the person driving it. If there is any positive aspect to getting into a crash with someone who flees the scene, it is that they will typically wind up allocated some of the responsibility for the collision, if not all of it. A crash that involves either negligence or law-breaking could give rise to a personal injury lawsuit or a wrongful death lawsuit if someone you loved died in the collision.

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| Read Time: 2 minutes | Injuries

Eliminating Preventable Crashes

Car accidents kill thousands of people each year in Texas. That’s a pretty frightening statistic, but when you start to realize that number is only accounting for deaths and not injuries, it can be even more terrifying. Tens of thousands of people are injured throughout the state, and some of those injuries life-threatening and permanent. Crashes caused by alcohol or distracted driving are avoidable accidents, which can make the injuries sustained by innocent victims even more infuriating. Knowing that the driver was doing something illegal to cause the crash can make a horrible situation worse. The best way to reduce the number of people injured or killed is by preventing the crashes from happening in the first place. The stats According to the Texas Department of Transportation, more than 100,000 traffic crashes each year involve some type of distracted driving. A study conducted by Texas A&M Transportation Institution found that more than 44 percent of drivers admitted to reading or sending messages while driving during the past month. Distracted driving includes more than just cell phones These days, when you hear about distracted driving, you likely think of texting and driving. It’s important to remember, however, that distracted driving is more than just texting and driving. Distracted driving can involve anything that takes your attention off the road. Some of those things include: Adjusting the radio, CD or DVD player Eating or drinking Programming your GPS Fixing hair or makeup If you have kids, then you know that hearing their screams or cries over a lost toy or dropped pacifier may seem like the greatest distraction you face. You might think it would be better to find whatever it is they are looking for with one hand while steering with the other in order to stop the tears. All of that takes your attention from the road and ultimately puts your safety at risk. Just don’t The only way to avoid distracted driving is to not be distracted. You might read about different voice-to-text apps that are supposed to eliminate that concern. But another Texas A&M Transportation Institution found that those apps aren’t any safer. So the only way to make it safer is to just pretend your phone isn’t there. Ignore it while you are in the car. If you or a loved one were injured due to someone else negligence or bad decisions, you should talk to an experienced attorney. You deserve to be compensated for your suffering.

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| Read Time: < 1 minute | Car Accidents

What you can do to help prevent car accidents

More than 32,000 people die and 2 million people are injured in car accidents each year in the United States. And in 2013, the rate of U.S. crash fatalities was more than twice the average of other high-income countries. Although accidents can, and will, happen, there are measures we can take to prevent many accidents from occurring in the first place. The Federal government and many states are implementing safety and awareness programs. Find out what you can do as a driver and passenger to improve safety on our roads.  According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Vital Signs report, drivers and passengers can do the following to help fight against serious and fatal car accidents: Use a seat belt in every seat and on every trip, no matter how short. Buckle children in safely in car seats, booster seats or seat belts, whichever is appropriate for their height and weight. Do not drive while impaired by alcohol or drugs, and encourage others to make the same decision. Obey speed limits and other posted traffic signs and signals. Drive free from distractions, such as texting or other cellphone use. It is also important to share the road with motorcyclists, bicyclists and watch for pedestrians in the crosswalks. They are extra vulnerable on the roads, and tend to suffer more serious injuries. If you are in a car accident, first get immediate medical treatment for you and your passengers. It is also important to speak to a personal injury attorney about your legal claim with the insurance company. 

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| Read Time: < 1 minute | Motorcycle Accidents

Road rash seldom kills, but it can if it’s left untreated

If you ever research how to prevent injuries when you suffer a motorcycle crash, then you’ll likely come across information that emphasizes the importance of you wearing protective gear at all times. A helmet can protect you from head injuries. Specially-designed clothing can protect you from painful and potentially life-threatening road rash. In case you’re not familiar with what road rash is, it’s a type of injury that you’re at risk of suffering if your unprotected skin comes in contact an asphalt roadway during a motorcycle crash. While in most cases, it’s disturbing to look at, and it’s painful, it’s not normally life-threatening. It can be, though. Provided that a person who’s suffered road rash seeks immediate treatment for their injury, their skin is likely to bounce back to its original condition in due time. If they don’t, then dehydration and an infection may set in. Skin may initially start peeling via an abrasion process. Those with the most extensive friction burns may be left with disfiguring scars if their skin has to be surgically removed or depending on the extent of their injuries. Waco motorcyclists who suffer road rash can minimize their risk of developing a potentially deadly infection by changing their bandages at least once every 24 hours. If pain, redness or swelling increases, the area around the wound is warm to the touch or fluid begins draining from it in the days after the injury occurs, then this may be a sign that an infection is setting in. Texas residents who suffer debilitating or disfiguring injuries after experiencing a wipeout should first consult with a doctor to receive the life-saving treatment they need. They should then reach out to an attorney who will aggressively protect their right to compensation for medical costs and other expenses.

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| Read Time: < 1 minute | Car Accidents

How do whiplash injuries occur in car accidents?

All kinds of injuries can occur during a car accident. Broken bones, internal damage and head injuries are common. Whiplash is also a common injury suffered during car accidents. While whiplash isn’t typically life-threatening, it can have a lasting impact on a victim’s health and finances. What is whiplash? It is an injury to the neck and sometimes the spine. The condition is also known as neck strain and neck sprain. How does whiplash happen? Whiplash occurs when the head is abruptly forced or whipped into a violent backward and forward motion. Rear-end car accidents are among the top causes of this painful condition. What are the symptoms of whiplash? Stiffness and pain in the neck Headaches, fatigue, dizziness and irritability Pain in and between the shoulders Pain in the back Numbness or pain in the hand or arm Sleep problems and difficulty concentrating How is whiplash treated? Pain medication Physical therapy Exercise Massage Ultrasound Heat and/or ice One of the main problems with whiplash is that while its treatment seems simple, the expenses related to short or long-term medical care can really add up. Although whiplash is usually not as serious as other car accident injuries, it can still disrupt your life and create health problems if left untreated. When a car accident leading to whiplash occurs because of another party’s negligence, victims should consider talking with a personal injury lawyer about their potential legal options. You may be able to seek compensation from the at-fault driver that can help you with things like medical expenses, physical therapy and lost income.

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| Read Time: < 1 minute | Car Accidents

Driver arrested after fleeing crash that killed passenger

When two friends were involved in an accident in Texas, the driver fled the scene, leaving a young man with critical injuries in the passenger seat. That man eventually passed away from those injuries, even though the emergency crews rushed him to the hospital. The two were in a Dodge Challenger. The driver appears to have lost control of the car, though the reason why is unknown as the investigation continues. In any case, it slammed head-on into a light pole at around 5:45 a.m. While police reports indicated that the driver left the crash scene, the authorities did eventually identify that individual. At this time, charges against the driver are still pending. There is some question as to the cause of the accident. The earliest reports claimed that authorities did not yet know if the weather played a role or if alcohol use was involved. They may be able to get more answers since they found the driver who survived the incident. Pictures from the scene show what appears to be a gray sports car sitting up against the pole, in a field of trees. The front end is smashed and the hood is up. All of the doors and the trunk also appear to be open. The road, covered in the glare of the emergency lights, does appear to be wet in the photographs. Have you lost a loved one in a tragic accident, perhaps caused by a negligent or reckless driver? Even in a single-car accident, you may have a right to seek financial compensation if your loved one was a passenger. Source: Valley Central, “Police: 19-Year-Old Man Dies After One-Car Crash in Harlingen,” Oct. 11, 2017

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| Read Time: 2 minutes | Motorcycle Accidents

A Denton man is indicted for causing a fatal crash while on drugs

A grand jury in Bell County handed down a criminal indictment this week in a motorcycle accident case that occurred in Belton back in October. The driver alleged to have been responsible for the crash will now face vehicular manslaughter and intoxicated driving with deadly weapon charges as a result. According to the Texas Department of Public Safety, the defendant had been driving his pickup truck southbound along State Highway 317 in the direction of Temple when he suddenly made a U-turn to head north. A 55-year-old China Spring man was traveling northbound along that same stretch of highway when the pickup truck’s driver turned in front of him, making an impact with his motorbike. The motorcyclist was killed in an instant. Another motorcyclist, who was closely following the first, was also struck during the crash. The 54-year-old Waco man suffered undisclosed injuries. It’s unclear if he was transported to an area hospital for treatment. Soon after arriving on the crash scene, the pickup’s driver was taken into police custody. The 56-year-old Denton man was later booked in jail on vehicular homicide, driving while intoxicated (DWI) and drug possession charges. It’s unclear how much marijuana he had on him or in his vehicle at the time of the crash. There are many reasons that a motorcycle can wipe out. It can result from lane sharing, driving too fast for road conditions, a motorist suddenly opening their doors or from getting rear-ended by a car. When these types of collisions result in the death of a loved one or serious injuries, you may have to turn to the courts to obtain both justice and fair compensation. A criminal case can punish someone for their reckless or negligent behavior, but a civil suit can help you obtain compensation that replaces lost wages and provides for future expenses.

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| Read Time: 2 minutes | Car Accidents

Horrific crash kills 3 storm chasers; lawsuit filed

We see their videos going viral online, those intrepid storm chasers who get up close and personal with some monstrous tornadoes ripping across the Great Plains and down Tornado Alley. But at what price, as capturing these deadly storms can be incredibly dangerous. According to the litigation filed by the survivors of one storm-chaser, that price tag might be $125 million. At least that is the amount of damages the plaintiffs are seeking in a wrongful death lawsuit filed against defendants that include The Weather Channel. Conditions were ripe for tornadic activity on March 28, 2017, when the two stars of The Weather Channel’s (TWC) Storm Wranglers set out in their Chevrolet Suburban at 70 mph to track the darkening clouds near Spur. At roughly the same time, another weather spotter, a 25-year-old National Weather Service employee from Arizona, was tracking the same storm from his Jeep. As the two storm wranglers raced toward the tornado, they live-streamed their progress on The Weather Channel’s Facebook page. The 57-year-old man stated, “[t]he storm isn’t very far in front of us right now. Actually, that’s what the dark is you’re seeing right there.” At that point, the driver, age 55, blew through a stop sign and directly into the path of the man in the jeep. All died in the initial impact. The younger man’s mother filed the wrongful death lawsuit against the network this month, citing the storm chasers’ past history of recklessness that caused her son’s death in the collision. According to the petition for damages, the two men had a “well-documented history of dangerous behavior behind the wheel.” Plaintiff claimed that The Weather Channel ignored and encouraged the men’s reckless driving in order to film “particularly exciting footage.” The attorney for the plaintiff claimed that the two TWC storm trackers had a habit of violating traffic safety regulations, including running red lights, while they shot footage of tornadoes around the country. This lawsuit shows that no driver is above the law, regardless of what they are trying to accomplish while simultaneously driving. If you lost a loved one due to another driver’s negligence, you may also need to take legal action in order to pursue financial compensation for your losses.

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| Read Time: < 1 minute | Premises Liability

How will you get your workers’ compensation?

You’ve gotten hurt at work. You’ve qualified for workers’ compensation. You know that means you will get regular payments based on a percentage of your wages and that your medical bills should be covered. How will you get that money? There are three basic options: 1. Electronic funds transfer This is also known as EFT. It is essentially a direct deposit system, which you may already use at work for your wages. If you are going to get your benefits for a minimum of eight weeks, you may qualify for the EFT program. You will need to provide the name of your bank or credit union, the routing number, the account number and the type of account it connects to — either a checking account or a savings account. Once you do this, money can be deposited directly into your account. 2. Check A paper check is the traditional way to get your compensation. You may be able to use your phone to take a picture and deposit the check remotely, or you may have to go into the bank in person, depending on your electronic banking options. Either way, there is one extra step compared to an EFT. 3. Access card program The access card program may streamline things for you a bit, as the cards are used to pay you the proper benefits. However, keep in mind that you will have to agree to it in writing before anything will get paid out. The insurance company also has to agree in writing. No matter how you get paid, make sure that you know all of your rights after a workplace injury. Source: Texas Department of Insurance

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