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Personal Injury Law Blog

DUI accidents spike around graduation

When graduation arrives, DUI accidents and fatalities go up. Studies have found that teens between the ages of 16-19 die at a rate of about 3,000 per year from accidents. Alcohol is involved in about a third of these, or 33 percent. On graduation night, though, alcohol is involved in 40 percent. Clearly, drinking and driving is more common around graduation, and the results are on the roads.

Other studies have found that about 33 percent of those who are under the legal drinking age -- 21 -- and who are killed in car accidents die during graduation season.

Pennsylvania man dies in car accident

A man from Pennsylvania was recently killed in a car accident, and three teenagers were hurt in the wreck. The man, who was a passenger in the car, was 39 years old.

The accident happened at about a quarter to nine in the evening, according to the police. A 19-year-old woman was driving her car on Route 19, going south, but she drifted off of the roadway for some reason. Her car first hit a guardrail, which knocked it into a sideways spin, and then it slammed into a tree.

Who is responsible for injuries on a cracked sidewalk?

If the sidewalk outside of someone's home is cracked and in poor repair, it may be slightly annoying. However, it may not be something he or she is really interested in fixing. The repair job may be too expensive, the person may be planning on moving -- and therefore hesitant to make long-term repairs -- or he or she may just not feel like putting in the time and effort. The homeowner may believe that it's up to the city to make the repairs.

The thing that people need to remember, though, is that repairing the sidewalk may subject them to liability if someone is injured on it If maintenance is not done, those who are injured may be able to seek compensation through a premises liability case.

Can your passengers drink in the car?

You know that you can't actively drink while driving a vehicle, but what about your passengers? Is is legal for someone to be drinking in the back seat while you're driving?

In Pennsylvania, it's not. The open container laws were created to stop exactly this type of situation, and they make it illegal to have any type of alcohol open in your vehicle. This means that a passenger who is holding an open beer, for example, would be in violation of those laws.

Is there a deadline to file a car accident insurance claim?

If you've been involved in a car accident, you may be wondering if there's a deadline by which you have to file your insurance claim. While it's true that insurance policies and providers vary—and so it's incredibly important to check your own policy—there is generally not a time limit.

The reason most people ask this question is simply that they're worried that they waited too long. Maybe you were involved in a wreck last month, for instance, and you just got too busy to report it. Maybe you didn't know your car suffered any damage, so you were just going to let it go, but now some damage is apparent and you want to look into your options. The same could be true for injuries.

Safety tips pedestrians can utilize

There is an incredible level of danger with any pedestrian accidents, so it's wise to take steps to protect yourself. Even if you're not at fault—if a driver hits you while you're legally crossing the street, with the signal, for example—the ramifications for you are far worse than they are for the driver. Use these tips to stay safe.

1. If you're out at night, it's a good idea to wear bright clothes. You may even want to consider clothes with reflectors on them, which are often worn by cyclists. Some experts have said that it can also be wise to carry a flashlight.

Read the fine print on carbon monoxide detectors

Carbon monoxide is very dangerous because, without a detector, you may have no idea that it's in your home. Even when building up to deadly levels, you're not going to see it or smell it. That's why people often call it a silent killer.

A carbon monoxide detector works much like a smoke detector, and there are even combination units that check for both at the same time. If the gas is found, it chimes and tells you to get out of the house before you suffer any harm.

The 3 levels of road rash

Not all types of road rash are the same, and the level that you experience during a motorcycle accident has a lot to do with how painful it will be, how long it will take to heal, and how much it's going to cost for the treatment. Generally speaking, the different levels are referred to as degrees—the same way that burn injuries are rated.

If you just have first-degree road rash, it's a relatively minor issue. Your skin will be slightly red and could be a bit painful to the touch. This can often be treated at home and will heal completely.

Parents may actually be some of the most dangerous drivers

Teenagers often get stereotyped as the worst drivers. People assume that they are constantly talking to one another, playing the music too loudly, and texting while they drive.

While all of these things can be true, interviews with some parents have shown that they can be dangerous, as well. Studies have demonstrated that children are incredibly distracting, and driving with them in the car can be as hazardous as texting and driving.

Drivers make many different types of mistakes at yield signs

One of the big reasons behind car accidents is that drivers often fail to do as they are instructed by the traffic safety devices that are in place. This includes stop signs, red lights, flashing lights, and much more. One device that seems to create a lot of confusion and different types of mistakes is the yield sign.

A yield sign is intended to get a driver to slow down, look for other traffic, and then allow that perpendicular traffic to pass if necessarily. If there is no traffic, the driver does not have to come to a full stop, but he or she should still slow down and look both ways before driving into the street. These signs are often used in low-traffic areas were a stop-sign is deemed to be overkill, but where drivers do need to be alert regarding an intersection.

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