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Personal Injury Law Blog

What to do if an injured person dies before a lawsuit begins

If a family member is injured, he or she may be planning on starting up a personal injury lawsuit, depending on how the injury occurred. For example, if your spouse is injured in a car accident caused by a negligent, reckless driver, the two of you may start planing a lawsuit to recover the financial losses while the person is still getting treatment at the hospital.

What should you do, though, if the person passes away before that lawsuit officially begins?

Is it more dangerous to drive in college towns?

Many people assume that college students aren't very good drivers, meaning that driving through a college down could be far more dangerous than a city that isn't centered around an institution of higher learning. The assumption is that college students are reckless, that they're more likely to be drunk, that they're always texting and driving and that this behavior causes accidents at all hours of the day. So, is it true, or is it just an unfair stereotype of college students?

While it's undeniable that the situations described above have happened, the overall stats have actually shown that college towns are not more dangerous than others. In fact, in one study that revealed the five safest cities for drivers, two big college towns were in the top five.

Red light turns have always been hazardous for pedestrians

It hasn't always been legal to turn right on a red light. In some places, it still isn't. However, back in the 1970s, the idea gained a lot of momentum, and now it's common to be able to turn right when a light is red unless there is a sign instructing you not to do so.

One issue that seems to go overlooked, though, is that this is and always has been dangerous for pedestrians. When drivers turn right on a red, pedestrians may have a walking symbol on the street onto which the cars are turning. The car then turns through the crosswalk.

Bluetooth motorcycle helmet aims to reduce distractions

Experts have noted that the distractions of electronic devices can be just as hazardous for motorcyclists as they can be for drivers who are behind the wheels of cars and trucks. Riders still want to be connected, taking phone calls and keeping in touch with people. They still want to use the GPS to find out where they're going. They want to listen to music on the go.

All of this can be a distraction in a car, but the risk on a motorcycle can be even greater because it not only takes a rider's eyes off of the road, but it also takes his or her hands off of the handlebars. This can send the bike out of control and cause an accident, especially at high speeds.

6 people injured in massive crash in Philadelphia

A multi-car accident in Philadelphia landed six people in the hospital just before the new year. One of those was a parole officer for the state of Pennsylvania. Police reported that some of the people involved in the accident became trapped in their vehicles and had to be extricated to take them to area hospitals and trauma centers.

The wreck happened on the 29th of December. It was in Fairmount Park, right near Lincoln Drive. Pictures of the scene show firetrucks parked in the street near a number of mangled vehicles, with pieces of some cars lying on the pavement.

Is a full-face helmet safer than an open-face helmet?

There are two basic choices when looking at motorcycle helmets. First, you can wear an open-faced helmet, which surrounds your head and leaves the face exposed, often for a pair of sunglasses or goggles. Second, you can wear a full-face helmet that has a bar going around your chin. There are other specialty helmets that don't perfectly fit into these classes, but they are the main two. So, which one is safer?

It's hard to argue that the open-face helmet could ever be safer. This does not mean it is unsafe, but it simply can't compete with the full-face design, which puts more helmet and structure right where a rider needs it the most. That extra bar gives the helmet more stability and durability in a crash, whereas the open-face design could still allow a rider's face to connect directly with another object—like a car—during a wreck.

Pedestrian crashes happen at different times for different groups

Tracking pedestrian accidents and the times they tend to happen can be fairly straightforward. For example, most of these crashes happen during "peak periods," which occur in the morning and afternoon. They largely coincide with the times when people go to work or head home from work. At these times, there are the most cars on the road and greater numbers of pedestrians, so crashes are statistically more likely.

Fatal accidents, though, happen later in the day. They are most common after five, when most people get out of work, and before 11 at night. Contributing factors during this time include darkness, alcohol use, and higher traffic numbers than are seen in the middle of the day.

In an accident, does a motorcycle have any advantages?

The disadvantages that a motorcycle has when compared to a car are well known. The sheer weight of the motorcycle is lower, for instance, so it will fair poorly in an accident with a larger vehicle. A motorcycle also lacks safety features like airbags or a cage to protect the riders. However, are there any advantages that it enjoys?

In fact, there are a few. For one thing, because of its small size and weight, a motorcycle is pretty agile. If the rider is paying attention, he or she may be able to avoid an accident that a larger vehicle—like a semi-truck—could never avoid.

How fast do property owners need to remove snow?

If a property owner makes no effort to remove snow and ice from his or her property and then someone slips and is injured as a result, the injured party can start a premises liability lawsuit. This lawsuit can be used to force the owner to pay for the injuries since he or she neglected the snow and allowed the area to become dangerous.

There are specific ways this has to be done. The legal code in Philadelphia, for instance, says that the person must create a path that is at least 36 inches wide. That goes for any sidewalks on the property.

Interesting facts about car accidents

Car accidents may feel random when they happen, but looking at the trends can help to show that they're not as random as some people assume. Below are some interesting facts that can shed light on how and why accidents occur.

1. Roughly 40 percent of fatal accidents are linked to alcohol. When looking just at crashes after midnight and before three in the morning, this percentage jumps to roughly 75 percent.

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