Study Confirms Increased Accident Risks for Teenagers Riding with Teenagers

Wednesday, November 07, 2012

California's graduated driver’s licensing program places strict restrictions on the number of teens who can ride in a car being driven by a teenage motorist. A new study confirms the wisdom of having a law like this.

The survey was conducted by the AAA, and confirms to Los Angeles car accident attorneys, that it is important to retain such restrictions on the number of teenage passengers in a teen motorist's car. The research finds that having a number of passengers in a car increases the risk of risky driving practices for teenage motorists between 16 and 17 years of age.

Among these drivers, there was an increase in the number of speeding-related fatal crashes. These drivers were also much more likely to drive late at night or drive under the influence of alcohol.

The AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety researched data on fatal accidents that occurred across the country between 2005 and 2010. They found that a total of 9,578 motorists between the ages of 16 and 17 had been involved in fatal accidents during this period of time. In at least 3,994 of these accidents, there had been at least one teenage passenger in the car at the time of the accident.

According to the AAA, there is plenty of research to show that having young teenage passengers in the car increases a teenage motorist’s risk of being involved in an accident. In fact, Los Angeles car accident lawyers are aware of other studies which show that the accident risk of a teenage motorist increases proportionate to the the number of teenage passengers in the car.

As a parent, you can reduce your child’s chances of being involved in an accident by laying down strict rules about passengers, and making sure that your child complies with these.

Pasadena Fire Kills Two People

Thursday, November 01, 2012

With all of the safety regulations, explosions at a residence are fairly rare.  Unfortunately they do still happen.  This morning, around 2:00 am, a facility experienced an explosion that killed two people and critically injured another.  It is not yet apparent what caused the explosion.

The cause of the fire and status of the building are facts that are bound to come out soon.  When people are injured in an event like this it is important to determine what the cause was and who was responsible.  Factors like, the building being up to code, operational smoke detectors, the use of proper fire deterrents and how quickly the fire spread will all be looked at in this case.

Tragic Head On Collision Involves A Car, A Bus and Dump Truck

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

An accident involving a runaway dump truck, a BMW sedan and a Metro bus injured about 17 people on Tuesday morning at about 8 am. The accident occurred at the 7600 block of Hollywood Blvd.

An unattended dump truck rolled out of control, T-boning the bus. The crash severely damaged the bus, smashing into the side and causing windows to shatter. Passengers were thrown around in the bus.

The bus driver swerved into the westbound lane, trying to avoid the oncoming dump truck. In so doing, the bus crashed into a BMW sedan, driven by a mother who was taking her ten year old daughter to school.

The mother was trapped in the car for at least 20 minutes and required emergency help by firefighters, who were ultimately able to cut her free. The driver sustained injuries that included a broken left leg and was hospitalized in serious condition. Fortunately, her daughter was able to escape from the car and sustained only minor injuries.

The bus driver was hospitalized and listed in fair condition. Some 17 or more passengers were taken to the hospital for treatment of cuts and bruises. Some passengers suffered from cuts while escaping from the shattered emergency windows.

Meningitis Outbreak Sheds Light on Risks of Compounding Pharmacies

Saturday, October 13, 2012
Meningitis Outbreak

According to federal health officials and widespread reports, at least 137 people in ten states have become ill from a rare form of meningitis.   This particular outbreak is believed to have been caused by contamination of an injected medication used by the victims to reduce lower back pain.

Individuals who were sickened due to this meningitis outbreak, or family members of those who might have died from the condition, may have a legal claim for compensation.  If you or a loved one has contracted meningitis after receiving a steroid injection, you should contact an attorney to help protect your legal rights. 

While this particular outbreak seems to be centered around individuals that used back medicine that was produced by an single compounding pharmacy in Massachusetts, this by no means a once-in-a-lifetime event.  Compounding pharmacies have been growing in popularity over the past few years due to the promise of customizing drug treatment to each patient.  For example, if a patient is allergic to one particular part of a mass produced drug, a compounding pharmacy can create a version of the drug that does not contain that one ingredient.  While this sound very promising, the danger lies in the fact that these pharmacies are not held to the same safety standards as the major drug manufacturers.  The current meningitis outbreak seems to be evidence of this danger.

If you feel you have been made sick due to medication produced at a compounding pharmacy, please contact our office to discuss your case. 

Creative New Bicycle Helmet Design Could Increase Usage Rates

Wednesday, October 03, 2012

Increasing bicycle helmet usage rates could simply be a matter of making helmets more stylish, less intrusive, lighter and more comfortable.

Two Swedish designers have come up with an innovative new bicycle helmet design that could be the next big thing in bicycle safety. The engineers have come up with any invisible bicycle helmet that basically consists of an inflatable neck piece worn around your neck. The neck piece inflates in a fraction of a second when there is potential for impact, ballooning instantly into a huge helmet that gives more protection than an ordinary bicycle helmet ever could.

The high-tech helmet is much tougher than it looks, and is believed to withstand impact with concrete. It also inflates in.1 seconds, making it very effective.

The 2 designers were concerned at the low rates of bicycle helmet usage in Sweden, especially among female bicyclists. They conducted a survey of bicyclists, and found that most bicyclists who did not wear helmets failed to do so, because they did not like the look of these helmets, because they're uncomfortable to wear, and because people cannot wear hats when they're wearing a helmet. Moreover, bicycle helmets were seen as being unstylish, a major deterrent for any fashion-conscious European.

The helmet has already been launched in the European market, and has proved to be a smashing success. The “airbag helmet,” as it is being referred to by the media, only recently became a talking point among Americans after promotional videos went viral on social media. Los Angeles Personal Injury Lawyers have taken note that demand in this country has already begun, but the designers say they're not sure when they will be able to introduce the product in the American market.

NHTSA Reports Spike in Pedestrian Accident Fatalities

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Traffic accident fatalities around the country have been down over the past couple of years, but pedestrians need to continue exercising caution while walking. The new data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration finds that pedestrian accident fatalities in 2010 increased by about 4% percent, compared to 2009.

A total of 4,280 pedestrians were killed in accidents in 2010. That was an increase from 4,109 in 2009. Those are some of the most recent statistics available, until the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration releases statistics for 2011.

The agency has no explanation for those increasing accident fatality numbers, which are very worrying to Los Angeles pedestrian accident lawyers. In California, there were a total of 2,715 pedestrian accident fatalities in 2010. In fact, in that year, pedestrian accident fatalities accounted for more than 22% of the total number of fatalities.

However, the federal agency insists that pedestrians are much safer on the roads now than they were about a decade back. Pedestrian fatality numbers in 2010 were about approximately 13% lower than they were back in 2001. However, what Los Angeles car accident attorneys find very worrying is that the numbers are up even though the total number of traffic accident deaths is down.

For instance, in 2001, there were a total of 42,196 traffic accident fatalities and out of those, about 4900 were pedestrians. In 2010 however, the traffic accident fatality numbers had dropped to 32,885, and out of those, about 4,280 were pedestrians.

A shaky economy and fluctuating gas prices are just two of the reasons why more people have been choosing to walk to work. While more numbers of pedestrians automatically translates into lowered traffic congestion, it will be hard to persuade more people to walk if it isn’t safe for them to do so.


Accident Fatality Declines Linked to Increasing Demand for Safety Devices

Thursday, July 19, 2012

The dramatic declines in traffic accident fatalities in California and around the country may have much to do with the fact that many automobiles are now coming with sophisticated safety gadgets. A new study by Harris Interactive finds that the demand for such gadgets is being driven largely by consumers, who are now prioritizing the safety of a car over other aspects.

Traditionally, Americans have considered aspects like gas mileage before deciding to make a car purchase. However, these aspects have now taken a backseat to safety. The average consumer now is aware that his chances of being involved in an accident or walking away from an accident uninjured improve dramatically depending on the auto safety technologies in the car.

Those beliefs were confirmed just a few weeks ago in a study by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, which found that many new auto safety technologies like forward collision warning systems and adaptive headlights have actually reduced the number of accident claims. The study relied on the accident claims ratio, and found that many of these new safety aids were responsible for reducing accident risks.

Not surprisingly, consumers are now looking for newer safety gadgets in their vehicles. According to Harris Interactive, many consumers now admit that they're much more interested in the safety features in their vehicles than entertainment or entertainment technologies.

What is even more interesting to Los Angeles car accident lawyers is that consumers are now looking for gadgets that they can use often. For instance, a backup camera can be used every time a person drives. There is a huge demand for these camera systems, which can be used to make sure that there are no pedestrians, especially child pedestrians standing behind your vehicle when you back out of your driveway, or a parking lot.

Additionally, blind spot warning systems are also very popular among consumers, who are now demanding such technologies.

More Than Half of Older Teenagers Admit to Texting While Driving

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

In a new study, more than half of all high school students surveyed admitted that they frequently text while driving. Approximately 58% of the school seniors in the study that was released by the federal administration confessed that they had texted or e-mailed while driving at least once during the previous year. Seniors seem to be at a much higher risk of such distracted driving practices than juniors. Approximately 40% of the high school juniors admitted to texting while driving at least once during the previous month.

The study was conducted by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and involved more than 15,000 high school students from across the country. The results of the study seem to present a much more frightening picture than earlier studies have shown. It's not as if Los Angeles car accident lawyers are unfamiliar with teenage texting while driving, but the extent of the practice is staggering.

The federal administration has released these statistics in time for the busy summer season, when more numbers of teenage motorists can be expected to share the roads with other drivers. That means more numbers of teenagers who have no qualms about texting or e-mailing while driving. Approximately 60% of all motor vehicle accident fatalities involve teenage motorists who are distracted while driving.

Teenagers have poor concentration and attention spans, and may be frequently distracted by a number of other things in the car like their music system, or teenage passengers. When you introduce cell phones and other electronic devices into the mix, it only increases the risk of distractions. A person who is distracted by his or her cell phone is much less likely to respond to an emergency situation. Reaction times are delayed when a person's attention is diverted in this manner.

Failure to Use Turn Signals Causes 2 Million Accidents Every Year

Thursday, May 10, 2012

It’s one the most common driving errors on the road, and causes millions of accidents every year. It's not distracted driving or drunk driving. It is the failure to use turn signals, or turn off signals after lane changes. Such failure to use turn signals contributes to 2 million accidents every year. However, Los Angeles car accident lawyers do not find much attention focused on this particular driving error.

According to a study conducted by the Society of Automotive Engineers, many drivers fail to use turn signals while changing lanes at least 48 % of the time. When they're making a turn, they fail to use turn signals at least 25% of the time. According to the researchers, drivers make such drastic driving errors as many as many as 2 billion times a day, or 750 billion times in a year.

It's not always forgetfulness that is to blame when a driver fails to make a U-turn signal while changing lanes, or switch off a turn signal later. Sometimes, drivers may deliberately fail to use turn signals appropriately. This could either be because of a sense of complacency, about driving safely. Some experts also believe that it is a sign of poor driver training. A lazy driver may also not bother to use a turn signal.

What compounds the problem is that very little attention is paid by law enforcement to this problem. Most law enforcement agencies in California focus heavily on pulling intoxicated motorists off the road, or violating enforcing speeding laws. You rarely hear of police officers pulling drivers over because of failure to use turn signals or failure to turn signals off, and therein lies the problem. .

California College Students at High Risk of Cell Phone-Related Accidents

Monday, April 30, 2012

A new study indicates to Los Angeles car accident attorneys that it's not just intoxicated driving that is one of the biggest killers of California’s college students.  This category of motorists is also highly susceptible to the risks of distracted driving.  The study finds that more than three quarters of college students talk on their cell phones while driving, or text while driving.

Approximately 70% of the college students reported that they engage in such distracting behaviors while they are driving a car.  That's not all.  Approximately 50% of the students also admitted that they frequently send texts while driving on the freeway.

The survey included more than 5000 college students from colleges in San Diego.  Approximately 60% of the college students said that they frequently send texts while driving in heavy traffic or driving on city streets, while 87% sent texts while they were at a traffic light.  About 52% said that they used hands-free devices some of the time, while approximately a quarter used texting devices frequently.  Only about 12% of the students said that they never used texting devices while driving.

There is a vast body of research that indicates that drivers are at a much higher risk of accidents when they are texting or using cell phones while driving.  According to some studies, the risks are fourfold higher when a motorist is using a hand held cell phone or texting while driving. 

However, that should not be taken to mean that using a hands-free set is completely safe.  Some studies show that using a hands-free set can be just as dangerous as using a hand-held phone, because of the distraction from the conversation that the driver is having. 

Many colleges in California have initiatives in place to discourage students from underage drinking.  This study indicates to Los Angeles car accident lawyers that similar initiatives are also needed to target distracted driving amongst students. 


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