| Read Time: 2 minutes | Car Accidents

What causes a person’s blood alcohol level to increase?

When you read a media report about a drunk driving crash, it generally mentions what the negligent motorist’s blood alcohol content (BAC) was when it occurred. Stories that make it on the news are often the ones in which a motorist had a BAC two or more times Texas’ legal limit of .08%. What you may be unaware of are the many factors that can affect your BAC. A bartender generally pours five ounces of wine when they serve you. A regular bottle or can of beer is generally 12 ounces. A shot of tequila, vodka or another liquor is generally 1.5 ounces. While these are standard sizes of most products that you purchase at the store or the bar, there are exceptions to the rule. The alcohol content that different drinks have can vary as well. How much and what you drink can impact how long it takes your body to metabolize it. This may result in you not feeling the full effects of what you’ve consumed until your fully intoxicated. Mixing alcoholic beverages is a bad idea. It can leave you feeling more intoxicated than you otherwise would have felt had you only had a single type of drink instead. Individuals who mix liquor with sweet beverages such as sodas may forget the fact that they’re consuming alcohol. By the time it absorbs into their bloodstream, they may find themselves overly intoxicated. Even if individuals drink exactly the same thing, their bodies may process what they consume completely differently. Females and males tend to metabolize alcoholic beverages at two distinct speeds. A person’s weight can affect how quickly they can process drinks too. Individuals who are new to drinking may not have built up as much of a tolerance for alcohol as more seasoned drinkers have. Although Texas’ legal limit is .08 %, the American Association for the Advancement of Science argues that individuals can face significant impairments with a BAC of as little as .05 %. Motorists may have difficulty steering their vehicle, processing information and reacting quickly. This may make them more vulnerable to crashing into others. Motorists in Waco who’ve been struck by drunk drivers should consult with an attorney. They can aid them in recovering the compensation necessary to cover medical bills, lost wages or funeral costs.

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Are rural or city roads more dangerous?

Perhaps you’ve seen the statistics indicating that rural roads results in more deadly accidents than urban roads, even though far more drivers are in urban areas and many more miles are driven there every year. This seems counter-intuitive. Wouldn’t there be more deadly crashes on packed roads where more total accidents happen? There are numerous reasons why rural roads are actually more dangerous. A few include: 1. No street lights. It’s truly dark at night. This can massively limit one’s ability to see potential hazards and may be disorienting to drivers who are used to street lights. 2. Drivers may be too relaxed. It’s easy to stop paying attention when you’re driving in a straight line, on a relatively empty road, for miles and miles. If you do, though, that could reduce reaction times and cause an accident that could have been avoided. 3. Drinking and driving. While a drunk driver could just as easily be in the city, some people are more likely to drink and drive in the country because they think the odds of being caught by police are lower. 4. Head-on accidents. Many city streets are one-way roads or it is illegal to pass on two-way streets. Conversely, many country roads allow passing, even though the roads are more narrow. This increases the odds that two cars will wind up in the same lane going opposite directions, and it therefore increases head-on collision statistics. These are some of the most dangerous accidents to be involved in. No matter where you are driving when another driver causes an accident that injures you or takes a love one’s life, you must know if you have a legal right to financial compensation. Source: BLine Traffic Schools, “Why are Rural Roads More Dangerous?,” accessed Aug. 18, 2017

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| Read Time: 2 minutes | Car Accidents

Is your employer liable for your car accident injuries?

What happens if you’re in a wreck, through no fault of your own, while you’re driving a car for work? Do you have to hope the other driver has insurance? Is your insurance company required to cover your losses? Is any part of the damage your employer’s responsibility? In short — it’s complicated. If you’re making deliveries for your boss or running errands, drive a company car or get reimbursed for your mileage, there’s a strong possibility that you do have the right to claim workers’ compensation for any injuries you suffer, as well as for and lost wages. Such is the case even if you also file a personal injury lawsuit against the other driver or have your own insurance to cover your bills. A lot depends on exactly what you were doing when you got into the accident. For example, perhaps you work at a car lot and a customer wanted to buy a Kia Soul in green but you only had silver on the lot. You call another lot owned by your boss and found a green Kia. You caught a ride over to the other dealership and were driving the Kia back to close the deal. But, you make a quick detour to pick up your son’s prescriptions at a local pharmacy so you can save time on the way home simply because you were close by. That’s when the accident happens. Your employer can argue that you were on your own time when the accident occurred and the worker’s comp insurer can deny your claim. On the other hand, if your employer called you and told you to head through a drive-thru on your way back to grab lunch for the office, that’s running an errand for your employer and you should be compensated. There are a lot of “shades of gray” in workers’ comp claims. Don’t let your workers’ compensation claim be denied because you don’t know your rights.

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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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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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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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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 Morning Star, “Update: Police investigating morning car crash,” Oct. 11, 2017

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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: 2 minutes | Car Accidents

Whiplash doesn’t always cause pain after a car accident

Whiplash is one of the most common injuries that victims suffer in car accidents, and also one of the most commonly overlooked. Like other delayed pain injuries, whiplash does not always cause pain right away after the accident. Many car accident victims may not feel the pain of these injuries in the immediate aftermath of a collision, and they may decide to skip the recommended medical examination. This can turn into a costly, painful mistake. If you recently experienced a car accident, you may have whiplash that you did not feel at first, as well as other delayed pain injuries. Avoiding a full medical examination after a car accident may seem like a good way to lower your medical costs, but this is often untrue. If you have a delayed pain injury, avoiding a medical exam could give your injuries time to grow much worse. Any time that a person experiences a car accident, it is wise for them to see their doctor or another qualified medical professional immediately for a complete medical examination. A full examination can help a doctor identify hidden injuries and treat them quickly and accurately. Not only does proper treatment help you heal properly, it can lower your overall recovery costs in the long run. Whiplash is a serious injury Whiplash is the common name for soft-tissue damage which occurs in muscle tissue that experiences a significant impact or strain. Even a relatively minor accident can produce whiplash, often in a victim’s neck and back. Many people assume that whiplash is not a serious injury, because it heals over time. However, whiplash can cause unbearable pain for victims, making it impossible for them to complete simple daily tasks, let alone perform work at their jobs. Many car accident victims do not feel any pain after an accident and believe that they did not suffer any injuries, only to wake up with serious stiffness and pain. When a victims cannot move part of their body without significant pain, it is difficult to work and care for themselves. This may mean that their income suffers while, at the same time, they must pay for additional help and treatment. A serious whiplash injury may prevent a victim from working for several weeks, which is financially disastrous in some cases. Protecting yourself today If you suffered whiplash in a car accident, it is wise to undergo a complete medical examination as soon as you can. You may have other delayed pain injuries as well, so the sooner you see a qualified medical professional, the better. Proper professional medical care after a car accident not only identities hidden injuries, it generates valuable medical documents you can use to build a personal injury claim, if some other party caused your accident. A strong legal strategy helps protect your rights and provides the tools you need to recover from your injuries and return to your normal life after your recovery.

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