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FMCSA to conduct updated big rig causation study

Virginia residents should know that fatal large-truck crashes have been on the rise for over a decade. Between 2009 and 2018, their number went up 52.6% with 2018 seeing a total of 4,415 such incidents. This is largely due to several changes both in and out of the trucking industry: changes that the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration will be analyzing in a new study.

In January 2020, the FMCSA made its formal proposal of such a new study, the first one in over a decade. It sent Congress the results of its previous large-truck causation study back in 2006. The focus of this new study will be on distracted driving and how smartphones, navigation systems, fleet management systems and even safety features like automatic emergency braking are contributing to it.

Distrust of red-light cameras leads to decline

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety states that more than 800 people died in 2016 after someone ran a red light and crashed. Of these fatalities, more than half were individuals other than the guilty driver. Virginia residents are aware that running a red light is unacceptable, and they may be wondering what can help keep drivers from doing it and killing people.

This is where traffic-enforcement cameras can come into play. If these are installed, especially at dangerous intersections, they can take photographs of red-light runners and deter them from such behavior with a traffic ticket. The IIHS says that with red-light cameras, the number of red-light violations can go down 40%. Red-light running crash deaths are 21% less frequent in large cities with cameras than in large cities without them.

Legal protections for burn injury victims

The range of traumatic injuries car accident victims can suffer in a car accident can be extensive. Car accident victims can suffer catastrophic and traumatic injuries ranging from traumatic brain injuries to disfiguring injuries and burn injuries. Burn injuries can also range in degree from first to third degree burns which is why car accident victims should understand the different types of burn injuries and what to do about them.

There are three different levels of burns victims may suffer in a car accident ranging from first to third degree burns. A first-degree burn is considered a minor burn that affects the outer layer of the skin and may commonly cause redness and pain. A second-degree burn impacts both the outer layer of skin and the second layer of skin and is considered more serious than a first-degree burn. Second-degree burns can cause redness, swelling and white or splotchy skin discoloration. Second-degree burns can result in blisters and the pain associated with a second-degree burn can be severe.

Help for car accident victims

Car accident victims should have a basic understanding of the different types of damages that may be available to them through a personal injury claim. If a car accident victim was injured by a negligent driver, a claim for damages against the driver may help with the victim's physical, financial and emotional damages.

The first major category of damages that car accident victims may be able to recover is medical damages. Victims may be able to recover compensation for the costs associated with their medical care and treatment. Personal injury damages can include compensation for medical bills and future medical care costs as the circumstances warrant. Additional damages may be available if the victim has suffered disabling or disfiguring medical injuries.

What damages are recoverable after a car accident

Car accident victims should have a basic understanding of the different types of damages that may be available to them through a personal injury claim if they have been injured in a car accident. If a negligent driver has injured the victim in a car accident, then a claim for damages against that negligent driver may be able to help with the victim's physical, financial and emotional damages.

The first major category of damages that car accident victims may be able to receive compensation for is medical damages. Victims may be able to recover compensation for the costs associated with their medical care and treatment, even those that are expected to arise in the future. Additional damages may be available for disability and disfigurement if the victim has suffered disabling or disfiguring medical injuries.

Trucker texting puts motorists in harm's way

Strict rules help protect the public from truck drivers who are texting while driving, which is a particularly dangerous behavior. Any type of distracted driving-related accident can be serious for victims, but because of the size of semi-trucks and commercial vehicles, a truck accident with a distracted truck driver can be devastating.

Truck drivers are prohibited from texting while driving. Research reveals that the odds of being involved in a safety-critical accident increase by 23.2 times for truck drivers who text while driving when compared to those who do not. Drivers who text while driving removed their eyes from the roadway for an average of 4.6 seconds. While driving at 55 miles per hour, that means a truck driver's eyes are removed from the roadway for the length of a football field.

Who is liable for a dangerous or defective product?

Products liability law is an area of the law that protects victims of dangerous or defective products. It is important for injured victims who have been harmed by a dangerous or defective product to know who may be liable for the harm they have suffered. This way they can properly pursue a legal claim in hopes of recovering compensation for their damages.

When successful, a products liability claim for damages can help injured victims with their physical, financial, and emotional damages suffered because of a dangerous or defective product. Parties that may be liable for a dangerous or defective product can include the manufacturer of the dangerous or defective product, the manufacturer of component parts of the dangerous or defective product, the party assembling or installing the dangerous or defective product, the wholesaler of the dangerous of defective product, and the retailer that sold the dangerous or defective product to the consumer.

The impact of a brain injury on victims can be devastating

Brain injuries can dramatically impact, and change, the lives of victims. When a car accident victim has suffered a brain injury because of the actions of a negligent driver, it is helpful for them to be familiar with how personal injury legal options can help them.

A brain injury suffered in a car accident, including traumatic brain injuries, can devastate victims physically, financially and emotionally. Brain injuries can leave victims unable to perform the simple everyday tasks they performed with ease prior to the car accident. These victims may also be unable to work to support themselves and their families. Brain injury victims may also experience mood and personality disruptions that can make them unrecognizable to family and loved ones. All of this can take a dramatic toll on brain injury victims and their families.

What types of damages are recoverable in a wrongful death action?

In a typical personal injury case, the injured party files suit against another party, seeking to hold the defendant liable for the damages they suffered in an accident. These damages can include medical expenses, lost income from the time they were unable to return to work, pain and suffering and more.

In cases involving a fatal accident, Virginia law provides for a specialized type of personal injury action known as a wrongful death claim. A wrongful death claim is filed by a personal representative of the deceased on behalf of the victim's immediate family members.

Pedestrian and cyclist deaths rose even as other fatalities fell

When the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration recently released its massive study of fatal traffic accidents in the year 2018, it revealed good news and bad news. The agency found a 2.4% decline in fatalities, the second year in a row of declines. This was very good news indeed. However, the 2018 statistics also showed alarming increases to the fatality rates for pedestrians and cyclists.

According to the NHTSA, pedestrian fatalities rose by 3.4% in 2018. Fatalities among cyclists, including bicyclists and other non-motorized vehicles, rose by a shocking 6.3%.

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