Columbus Personal Injury Law Blog

Truck driver training increases focus on safety

Ohio motorists rely on everyone driving safely, including those behind the wheel of commercial trucks. When accidents include big rigs that weigh 80,000 pounds, the damage and injuries can be severe. For this reason, truck driver training programs have made safe driving a higher priority than the past. A community college instructor with over 10 years of truck driving experience said that a typical tractor-trailer needs the length of two football fields to stop in dry road conditions. He said that truck driver training failed to focus on safety in the past.

Now, the eight-week program that he teaches exposes future drivers to many road conditions and scenarios. Students use simulation technology just like airline pilots to feel what it is like to drive in rain and snow or during the day or night. Their 320 hours of classroom work includes map training, log book exercises and testing on government regulations. They are taught to constantly scan ahead for threats like a car that might cut them off in traffic.

Study shows how fewer hours of sleep raise crash risks

According to surveys from the U.S. Department of Transportation and other agencies, one in three adult drivers in Ohio and the rest of the nation sleep less than the minimum seven hours that are recommended each night. This poses a problem since drowsy driving accounts for an estimated 7 percent of all motor vehicle crashes in the U.S. and 16 percent of all fatal crashes.

A study recently published in the SLEEP journal has measured the risk that drivers run based on how little sleep they get. Researchers analyzed a previous study from the U.S. DoT that looked at 5,470 crashes and provided in-depth investigations for many of them. One advantage of this study is that it also takes into account interviews with the drivers themselves.

Dog bites can lead to catastrophic or disfiguring injuries

Many people enjoy the company of a dog as a companion animal. Other people have dogs for security purposes, and, in some cases, dogs can even serve to help people with medical needs. However, while dogs are useful, they are also a source of risk for anyone who encounters them.

Even the best trained animal can have a momentary lapse in judgment and bite and injure a human. Dogs specifically trained to be aggressive, such as guard dogs, are an even greater risk.

AAA provides tips for a safe Halloween

In Ohio, as elsewhere, Halloween is a day that gives rise to drunk and reckless driving. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the hours between 6 p.m. on October 31 and 6 a.m. on November 1 are the most dangerous for drunk driving crashes. Nearly half of the fatal drunk driving accidents that took place during that 12-hour period from 2012 to 2016 were attributed to 21- to 34-year-old drivers.

Referring to this data, the Northeast chapter of AAA has seen fit to provide some safety tips to both parents of trick-or-treaters and those who intend to party on Halloween. The latter group should, first of all, plan ahead by designating a sober driver to take them home or making use of public transportation or a ride-hailing service. Partygoers should also ensure that their friends do not drive drunk either. While behind the wheel, people must slow down.

As truck crashes rise, some push for mandatory safety tech

Truckers and truck fleet owners in Ohio should know that more than 4,300 people died in large truck accidents in 2016. This was a 28 percent increase from 2009, according to federal data. These findings have even caught the attention of several members of Congress, who may prompt action to improve truck safety.

Crash avoidance systems, according to the trucking companies that have implemented them, can prevent more than seven out of 10 rear-end collisions as well as mitigate injuries and vehicle damage. However, only a small percentage of truckers have implemented them. Lobbying groups like the Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association believe that implementing this technology should remain a voluntary decision.

Smart intersections: The future of traffic safety?

Intersections see a lot of activity. Unfortunately, this comes with dangers. A fair portion of motor vehicle accidents happen at intersections. Intersections can see many types of crashes, such as T-bone collisions and vehicles striking pedestrians or bicyclists. Such accidents can lead to many different types of injuries (such as head injuries, back/spinal injuries, internal injuries, severe cuts and broken bones) and raise a range of compensation-related legal issues for victims.

Might technology be able to make intersections safer? Among the technologies being developed on this front are smart intersections.

Important points to know about wrongful death cases

Serious motor vehicle accidents sometimes end in fatalities. When this occurs, the victim's family has to try to pick up the pieces after their loved one's death. There are many things this entails, including final arrangements. When the person who passed away was an income earner for the home, the untimely death can be financially devastating.

Some people might choose to seek compensation after a death like this. A wrongful death lawsuit is often possible if the crash was caused by another driver who did something negligent, reckless or on purpose. These cases aren't always easy to handle, but those left behind often find that closure can be beneficial.

Motorcyclists face big risks on the open road in Ohio

As the weather turns from cool to warm and sunny, more people take to the roads on two-wheel transportation. Both bicycles and motorcycles tend to head out when spring starts blurring into the heat of summer. It's a lovely time to feel the wind rush by and enjoy the seasonal beauty. However, it can also increase your risk of getting hurt while you're on the road.

Every year, dozens of motorcycle crashes kill people in Ohio. Hundreds more result in serious injuries to drivers and passengers on motorcycles. After spiking up to 200 in 2016, motorcycle deaths in Ohio dropped to 157 in 2017. Overall, though, they seem to be on the rise. Those who enjoy motorcycles should take great care when heading out to hit the road.

Are you ready to safely enjoy summer motorcycle season?

Warmer weather has finally arrived to Ohio, which means that motorcycles are back on the streets. For those who enjoy this popular two-wheeled form of transportation, spring and summer weather is excitedly anticipated throughout the dreary Midwest winters. The enthusiasm and excitement for that first ride could leave you willing to overlook several important factors when getting on your bike.

Whenever you head out for the ride, the first and most important goal should always be to return home safely at the end. Sadly, while Ohio has one of the highest number of motorcyclists, not all of them will make it through the summer season without injury. There are some steps you can take to keep yourself safe as you head out for a ride on your bike.

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