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Novato Personal Injury Blog

Vehicle crashes are responsible for half of severe brain injuries

One of the most traumatizing events in life is a car accident. According to statistics, more than 50% of all traumatic brain injuries are the result of vehicle crashes. Countless California families have had their lives turned upside down when these wrecks cause life-changing injuries.

Brain injuries can take different forms. If an accident causes a victim to be struck by a sharp or heavy object, an open wound or skull fracture may be inflicted. These types of injuries can be devastating -- depending on the type of damage that the brain may receive. However, even more severe injuries can be suffered without the presence of open cuts or skull deformities.

Personal injury claims against e-scooters could soon increase

Cities throughout California and across the nation are trying to ease congestion and reduce pollution. Several ride-sharing companies have responded by introducing e-scooters for short-term rentals. While most cites have drafted new regulations concerning the safe use of these vehicles, there have been several personal injury lawsuits filed over serious injuries that riders have suffered.

Recently, there have been reports that several models of these scooters have a glitch in their system that permits the motor to exceed the regulated speed required by many cities. Most municipalities have capped the speed limit at between 10 and 15 m.p.h. However, some riders have discovered a short circuit that could be accidentally triggered that allows the regulator to be bypassed. Consumer Reports tested the scooters and were able to reproduce the malfunction in several models. When activated -- either on purpose or by chance -- the glitch permits the rider to hit speeds in excess of 20 m.p.h. 

Back injuries suffered in car crashes are often life-changing

It is estimated that there are 285,000 people living in the United States who have suffered a spinal cord injury. Approximately 17,500 new injuries are reported every year. Those suffering from serious back injuries are often left with life-changing disabilities. California car accident victims also find themselves struggling with crippling medical expenses and other financial burdens that typically result.

Injuries involving the spinal cord are often more serious and debilitating. Depending on the location of the injury, different body systems and functions can be affected. The higher up on the spinal column the injury occurred, the more likely it is that serious consequences will result. Injuries involving the cervical section may cause quadriplegia, requiring ventilator-assisted breathing. Depending on the focal point of an injury further down the column, a patient may experience partial or total loss of use of his or her arms or legs. 

Street racing continues to claim lives in California

Since the early 2000s, several cities in California have become the most popular places in the country for street races to take place. The warm weather, long highways and heavily populated areas make these areas the prime locations for competitive racers to burn rubber and see who’s the best of the best.

Not only are these car races illegal, but they endanger both the drivers and any unfortunate motorist that just happens to go near it. While police have made efforts to prevent these races in recent years, two related accidents within the last month show that local drivers should still have concerns when driving at night.

Truckers plus fatigue can equal a basis for personal injury claim

Nearly 70 percent of the goods in this country are transported by commercial vehicles. It comes as no surprise then that the risks posed by a tired trucker to California travelers are incalculable. Due to the sheer size of these tractor-trailers, victims who are involved in a crash with one of them often suffer life-changing injuries. Those who are harmed may have a basis for filing a personal injury claim.

A comprehensive truck crash study was conducted over several years to determine the main factors involved in a commercial vehicle accident. Data for the study was gleaned from eyewitness accounts, police reports, driver interviews and evidence from crash scenes. Researchers found that driver fatigue was a common factor in a large percentage of the wrecks. The study found that there were 19 factors that appeared most frequently, and of those, 15 were the result of driver errors.

Researchers developing tools to gauge chances of brain injuries

One of the leading causes of death and injury in the United States for the 15-to-34 age group is traumatic head injuries. The most frequent cause of brain injuries is motor vehicle collisions. As too many California residents have discovered firsthand, a serious brain injury can have life changing implications.

Two researchers are working on developing tools that could provide first responders with on-scene mobile applications that could determine the likelihood of victims suffering a traumatic head injury. They have conducted experiments using such information as speed at the time of the wreck, type of collision and even angle of impact to assess the effects of these collisions on the brain. Since an estimated 30% of injury-related deaths are due to brain injuries, the ability to quickly diagnosis and treat victims could improve their chances for survival.

Negligent driving behaviors often cause serious car accidents

Not everyone who gets behind the wheel will exercise courtesy and respect for the safety of others. Sadly, there are many negligent behaviors than can lead to serious car accidents. California police stated that charges are pending in one fatal crash linked to street racing.

One a recent Friday evening, police reported to the scene of a horrific traffic accident. According to eyewitnesses and responding officers, two drivers were reportedly engaged in a street race while in the midst of other motorists. The suspected drivers, who were both driving Dodge Chargers, were traveling at a high rate of speed down a local roadway. Unfortunately, another motorist was attempting to complete a left-hand turn when her car was struck by one of the Chargers. The driver of the other racing vehicle did not stop.

Immaturity, inexperience often lead to serious car accidents

Teenage drivers usually face higher insurance premiums because they are considered at higher risk for accidents based on their youth and inexperience. Though there are exceptions, many younger drivers struggle with impetuous actions along with the new-found freedom that comes with having a license to drive, all of which can lead to reckless behavior and serious car accidents. One California teenager is facing murder charges after causing a fatal wreck.

Police officers reported to the scene of a deadly collision that occurred near an intersection in Woodland Hills. According to responding officers, a 17-year-old male driver was operating his vehicle in a reckless manner for several blocks. The driver allegedly disregard a traffic signal and raced through the intersection against the light. His vehicle smashed into the side of a pickup truck. The impact killed the driver of that vehicle.

Places to watch out for spring break drivers

Many residents are ecstatic once spring arrives. The temperatures start rising, the sun stays out longer, and most of the winter hazards such as snow and ice are starting to melt. Since winter and summer are often seen as the most dangerous driving seasons of the year, motorists feel like they don’t have to worry as much about terrible driving conditions for a while between March through May.

Unfortunately, spring has its own share of obstacles. Nearly every week in March and April features several colleges throughout the nation giving their students the week off. This is especially concerning for Californians given that the state is one of the top spring break destinations in the country. In certain areas, the chances of you encountering an intoxicated and inexperienced driver just increased dramatically. It is crucial that you are aware of the most dangerous locations to drive in to avoid reckless college students.

March dedicated to helping those who suffer with brain injuries

Throughout the calendar year, certain months are designated to bring awareness to a wide range of both social and health-related issues. For the past three decades, March has been designated as Brain Injury Awareness Month. The point of these campaigns is to draw attention to the difficulties that victims of brain injuries encounter in everyday life. There are countless California families who have been impacted by these often devastating injuries.

According to the Brain Injury Association of America (BIAA), a brain injury occurs every nine seconds. An estimated 137 people die every day due to a traumatic brain injury. The current campaign is called "Change Your Mind" and is geared toward eliminating the stigma of brain injuries, highlighting the needs of both victims and caregivers, while also helping to empower victims and their families by promoting the different types of support that are available to those who need them.

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