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Houston Personal Injury Law Blog

Costs related to car accidents

When someone gets into a car accident in Texas, there are numerous costs associated with it. There is usually property damage as well as injuries that need medical attention. There may also be a loss of work days. Depending on whose fault the crash is, one party may pay for these expenses or various parties may split the costs.

According to the Rocky Mountain Insurance Information Association, the cost of car crashes affect not only the victims but also society in general. It varies per year, but the average claim associated with property damage hovers around $3,000. Claims related to medical expenses generally cost more, with the average claim being around $15,000. While insurance companies and the victims themselves pay for a chunk of the expenses related to accidents, there is also a big financial impact to uninvolved parties, as they pay via travel delay, taxes and increased insurance premiums.

A commercial trucker’s poor health may put you in danger

With its size and strategic location, Houston sees its fair share of commercial trucks. When you leave home, you likely pass dozens of semi trucks on I-45, I-69 or I-10. You may not, though, think much about the health of the individual behind the wheel of a big rig. 

According to a recent survey by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, truck drivers tend to be less healthy than the population at large. While minor illnesses may not present much of a risk, other conditions may be downright dangerous. Here are a few times when a commercial trucker’s poor health may put you in danger. 

What to do about the surge in truck accidents

Drivers in Texas regularly share the road with truck drivers. While most drivers exercise caution when in close proximity to big rigs, some are reckless regardless of who they share the roads with. Even when careful, some drivers may become the unfortunate victim of another driver’s mistake. Maybe a truck driver falls asleep at the wheel or swerves to avoid a pedestrian and strikes the car in the neighboring lane.

According to a CNBC article published in 2014, there are 11 fatal truck accidents every day. These kill 4,000 people each year. Another 100,000 people are injured in these accidents each year. To put this into dramatic perspective, a commercial plane would need to crash every week and kill everyone on-board to have the same statistical effect.

Staying safe in work zones near commercial trucks

Commercial trucks go by many names. You may call them semi’s, big rigs, tractor-trailers or 18-wheelers. They are a common part of the highway landscape in Texas. Loaded with goods from salsa to tennis shoes, they weigh several tons. The weight makes stopping quickly virtually impossible. Now that summer has arrived, work-zones for widening roads and repairing damaged pavement are also numerous. At Charles J. Argento, we often represent clients injured in a collision with a big truck.

Several factors contribute to auto accidents in these areas. They include reduced speeds, traffic congestion, merging or shifting lanes and flaggers directing traffic. The Federal Highway Administration reports that nearly one-third of construction zone crashes involve big rigs. These accidents most often occur during the day, Monday through Friday. Most collisions happen in the No-Zone around semi-trucks. This is the blind spot area at the front, sides and rear of tractor-trailers.

Tips for driving at night

People who drive at night in Texas may not be aware that doing so greatly increases their chances of being in an accident. Not only is it harder to see when it is dark out, but certain conditions make it even more challenging to see the road. Ideally, driving at night should only occur when necessary, and if one must drive there are certain tips that can enhance safety for everyone.

According to the National Safety Council, fatal crashes occur three times more at night than at other times of the day and that most accidents occur between midnight and 6 AM. While driving when it is dark compromises vision in general, additional risk factors include fatigue, age and rush hour.

Updated warnings for diabetes medicine Invokana

There are many prescription drugs Texas residents may take to help manage type 2 diabetes, but not all of them may be as safe as originally thought. Recent studies and public safety announcements have confirmed that the original warnings for the drug canagliflozin may not cover all the associated risks and side effects.

There is a significant need for medicines that help patients with diabetes. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, there are over 100 million American citizens who have diabetes or prediabetes. The statistics show that diabetes rates are growing. This indicates an increasing need for drugs that may help patients who have the disease. Canagliflozin is a diabetes medicine that may exist under several sales names, including Invokana, Invokamet and Invokamet XR.

How overloaded trucks lead to motor vehicle fatalities

As a Texas motorist, you are no stranger to driving beside diverse types of vehicles on the road. You know your safety depends partially on other motorists operating their automobiles responsibly. When it comes to semi-trailers and large commercial trucks, you know many factors can impact road safety. You become apprehensive every time you drive near them. Despite the fact that there are numerous federal and local regulations in place to prevent large commercial and 18-wheeler truck accidents, overload violations still occur that often have catastrophic consequences for car and truck accident victims. 

Semi-trucks and tractor-trailers are some of the largest vehicles to grace the roads. They carry huge payloads. Many companies offer truck operators incentives to encourage them to beat or meet delivery deadlines. Some truck operators overload their vehicles and violate other regulations so they can make fewer trips and reap the benefits, not realizing or caring that their actions impact everyone on the roads with them. 

Serious penalties for DWI with a child passenger

Texas has an unfortunate reputation for a high number of car accidents related to drunk driving. The state has created several laws designed to reduce the number of alcohol-related accidents. Most of these laws have escalating penalties for repeat offenders. However, there are serious consequences for the first offense when a person drives under the influence of alcohol with a child in the car.

The Foundation for Advancing Alcohol Responsibility provides several facts and statistics about drunk driving in Texas. In 2017, there were 1,468 driving fatalities related to alcohol impairment. This represents a 12% increase in alcohol-impaired driving fatalities over the last 10 years. There were also 64,784 arrests in Texas for individuals driving under the influence.

Do not ignore pain after an accident

Drivers who get into a car accident in Texas may not think anything is physically wrong with them, especially if it was a minor fender bender. However, even small car accidents can result in bodily injury, and victims should not ignore symptoms, or else it can lead to major issues in the future. Some symptoms take time to appear, so it is important to handle things correctly with the insurance company and other driver so the proper party pays for injury treatment.

According to KTAR News, there are certain symptoms that commonly occur up to days or even a week after an accident. Stiffness is one of them. It is common for tightness and pain to occur in the neck, shoulders and back. Whiplash is a typical injury after a crash, especially with rear-end collisions. With it, there is damage to the ligaments, nerves and muscles in the neck, and getting treatment right away can minimize pain and other issues. Other common symptoms that may take a little time to show up include:

  • Numbness in the hands and arms
  • Headaches
  • Abdominal swelling or discomfort
  • Post-traumatic stress disorder
  • Impaired memory or physical movement 

Piecing your life together after a scooter accident

Traffic accidents happen in many different ways and they involve different types of vehicles. While trucks, SUVs and smaller cars are often involved in wrecks, it is important to recognize that motorcyclists, bicyclists and those riding scooters or mopeds may also be involved in a serious collision. If you have been hit by a reckless driver while operating a scooter, you may be going through all sorts of different challenges. From physical pain due to an injury to mental trauma and financial consequences, these accidents can be overwhelming.

Many people enjoy riding their scooter in the summer months thanks to warmer temperatures and freedom from school and work responsibilities, in some instances. Sometimes, people feel safer while riding a scooter since they may have an easier time operating the scooter. However, scooter accidents can be incredibly dangerous, whether someone rides their scooter at high speeds, or they are struck by a drunk driver who is operating a much larger vehicle.

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