Atlanta Personal Injury Law Blog

Do you practice safe habits when walking?

Being struck by a car while walking can lead to serious injuries, even if the car is not driving very fast. Nine out of every 10 passengers die when struck at just 40 miles per hour, and 260 pedestrians in Georgia were killed in 2017, according to the Georgia Department of Transportation.

Because collisions between cars and pedestrians occur so frequently and can be so severe, it is important to take steps to protect yourself when walking. Being attentive, visible and predictable can help you prevent being hit by a car.

Newly licensed teen drivers less safe than teens with permits

Georgia residents may not know this, but teens are more dangerous in the first three months of driving with a license than in the last three months of driving with a learner's permit and adult supervision. In fact, newly licensed teen drivers raise their risk for a collision or near-miss by eight times. This was the conclusion of a study conducted by Virginia Tech University and the National Institutes for Health.

Researchers analyzed the driving behaviors of 90 teens (131 parent supervisors also participated) from the time they received their permit through their first full year as licensed drivers. In-car cameras observed both the driver and the road, and special software noted drivers' speed and braking.

Study: Drivers still tempted by technology

Drivers in Georgia are often aware of the dangers of distracted driving. Around half of all respondents in one study said that distraction on the road posed the greatest threat to safety. This is backed up by facts: Thousands of serious car accidents are linked every year to distracted drivers. The problem has grown exponentially since the rise of the smartphone, even though technological factors aren't the only distractions drivers face. Simple acts like eating and drinking, caring for children or pets, or putting on makeup behind the wheel can also pose a distracting threat.

In some states, distracted driving is the leading cause of fatal accidents every year, while tens of thousands of people are injured in crashes linked to texting while driving and other distractions. Even though people know that distraction can be deadly, they also tend to discount its danger when they use their own phones while behind the wheel. Despite law enforcement crackdowns and public service announcements, large numbers of drivers can be seen using their phones while operating their vehicles. Study respondents said that they tended to use their phones at least 13 minutes each day while operating their cars.

Report finds many truck crashes in oil region

Georgia truck drivers who are fatigued may be more likely to cause a crash. Two deadly truck accidents in North Dakota that occurred as a result of driver fatigue highlighted the fact that the majority of accidents in the area are in the oil region.

A bypass in the area was supposed to increase safety, but in 2017, one semi driver crossed the center line and hit another semi head-on. Both drivers died. In October 2018 near the same stretch of roadway, another semi driver went over the center line and collided head-on with a pickup truck.

Roadway hazards and distracted driving could be a disastrous mix

Unexpected dangers, which can be as mundane as another driver merging into your lane or slamming on the breaks, can be catastrophic when paired with distracted driving, which the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration says caused almost 3,500 deaths in the United States in 2016. 

What is distracted driving?

Anything that takes your attention off the road can be a driving distraction. Some common examples include:

  • Texting or talking on the phone
  • Eating or drinking
  • Reaching for items on the floor or in the backseat
  • Adjusting the music selection or climate controls

Left-turn accidents: Common and deadly for motorcyclists

Now that spring is here and the weather is getting nicer, roads in and around Atlanta are going to see an increase in motorcycle traffic. Those who ride understand the feeling of freedom and exhilaration that comes with zipping along on two wheels. But too few people – especially drivers of larger vehicles – understand the level of danger that motorcyclists face each time they take to the roads and highways.

For a number of reasons, motorcycling is inherently more dangerous and deadly than driving a car. First, there is the weight and size differential between motorcycles and four-wheeled vehicles. Next, motorcyclists have no external protection in the event of a crash. Finally, there is the fact that drivers too often fail to notice or keep a lookout for motorcyclists.

Three actions you should take after being in a car crash

Being in a car crash can be terrifying. You may never expect to be in a car crash, but you can be prepared in case it happens. One way you can be prepared is by knowing the important actions you should take following a crash. After any car crash you should call for help, gather and report information, and schedule a medical examination.

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