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Ocala and Central Florida Personal Injury Law Blog

Inexperienced truck drivers are causing more accidents

Accidents involving semitrailers on Florida highways can cause severe, often fatal, injuries and extensive damage due to the overwhelming force caused by speed and the massive weight of the vehicles. A government study says a shortage of experienced drivers is causing new concerns.

The U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT) survey highlights the role of inexperienced truck drivers in accidents involving semitrailers, which can weigh up to 80,000 pounds when fully loaded.

Common causes of motor vehicle accidents involving pedestrians

Every year, close to 5,000 people die in the United States when they are struck by moving vehicles. Thousands more are hurt in auto-pedestrian accidents, leaving many individuals in Florida and throughout the country struggling to find their new normal after suffering serious and sometimes profound injuries in crashes with cars. Florida families are not immune from these tragedies, and some have paid the ultimate price when their loved ones lost their lives from collisions with automobiles.

Many auto-pedestrian crashes are caused by driver negligence. When a driver behaves negligently, they fail to meet their duty of care to operate their motor vehicle as a reasonable person would in their given set of circumstances. Examples of driver negligence may include but are not limited to speeding, ignoring traffic laws or signals, driving while intoxicated or failing to yield to pedestrians in crosswalks.

Serious injuries include traumatic brain injuries

A traumatic brain injury may happen if a Florida resident suffers a blow to their head or a penetration injury that affects their brain. Though they may range from mild to severe, traumatic brain injuries can happen when negligence-based accidents occur. Car accidents, slips and falls, consumer product hazards and a myriad of other sources of injury can result in traumatic brain injuries.

A traumatic brain injury can affect many of the operations of a victim's bodily system. While pain may be an immediate issue that a victim must cope with, other cognitive, sensory and motor-based functions may also be compromised. In terms of cognitive function, a victim with a traumatic brain injury may experience memory problems, mood swings and even changes in their levels of depression.

How do semi-truck drivers cause devastating truck accidents?

Any driver who chooses to operate a vehicle on Florida roads should be prepared to do so with care and consideration for their fellow motorists. That is because they have a legal duty of care to act as a reasonable person would when they get behind the wheel of a car. This includes private drivers of personal vehicles as well as commercial drivers of large trucks.

When truck drivers deviate from their duty of care to others, serious and sometimes deadly truck accidents can happen. Drivers who speed, hurry or otherwise rush to complete their deliveries in a timely manner may create dangerous conditions for other drivers that turn into accidents that could have been prevented had the truck driver been upholding their duty of care. Similarly, drivers who do not receive the proper operational training to safely drive their rigs may put others in the path of harm when they operate their trucks with inexperience and lack of knowledge.

What does it mean to a settle a motor vehicle accident claim?

After a motor vehicle accident in Florida, a victim may feel like they are caught in a whirlwind of uncertainties. They may prioritize the treatment of their injuries and may work with their employer to take time off from their job so that they can recuperate. They may work with insurers and auto dealers to replace or fix their vehicle and they may have to rely on others to complete daily tasks and needs. While coping with all of these and other matters they may receive an accident settlement offer in the mail.

A settlement is an agreement to release a responsible party from legal liability in exchange for financial compensation. For example, after an accident a victim may be offered $100,000 to settle their personal injury claim against the responsible driver. While $100,000 may sound like a lot of money to someone who is struggling with medical bills and time away from their work, in the long term it may not be enough money to fully make the victim whole.

Older adults can experience unique safety concerns when walking

Almost everyone walks sometimes. You may walk when completing errands. You may walk for the exercise, or you may walk for recreation. However, walking can be dangerous.

Almost 6,000 pedestrians in the United States were killed in traffic crashes in 2017, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). Many of those incidents were caused by reckless drivers. However, there are some actions you can take as a pedestrian to help you stay safe.

How are paralysis and spinal cord injuries related?

Paralysis is a serious medical ailment. Though it may develop as a result of an illness or genetic condition, many causes of paralysis are related to traumatic injuries sustained in accidents such as motor vehicle collisions. This Florida-based personal injury blog will share some information on the relationship between accidents, spinal cord injuries, and paralysis in this post, but as with all articles provided herein this post contains no medical or legal advice.

When an accident happens, a body may be subjected to violent forces and pressures. Under the weight of these conditions, the spinal cord may sustain trauma. The spinal cord is a bundle of nerves that runs from the brain down through the spinal column. From the spinal cord other nerves branch off to provide pathways from the brain to other parts of the body, such as the arms and legs.

Can Florida homeowners be liable for swimming pool accidents?

Hot weather has returned to Florida, and many people escape the heat by spending time at the pool. Some people choose to visit a community pool. However, many people go swimming at a friend or relative's house. But, swimming can be a dangerous activity. There is always the risk of drowning, slip-and-fall accidents and diving accidents at a homeowner's pool. This may make private pool owners wonder if they are liable for accidents that take place in their pools.

It is important for private pool owners to understand that they are responsible for pool accidents that occur while they are at home, supervising the activity. However, private pool owners may be surprised to find out that they are also responsible for injuries to trespassers who use their pool if the pool owner was negligent.

How do federal regulations seek to prevent truck accidents?

When it comes to an accident between a fully-loaded 80,000 pound semi-truck and a standard 2,000 pound automobile, it is likely that the occupants of the automobile will suffer significant damages. Unfortunately, truck accidents occur all too frequently in Florida and nationwide, injuring or killing those involved. For this reason, there are many federal and state laws and regulations that trucking companies and truck drivers must comply with.

For example, drivers of semi-trucks must obtain a commercial driver license to operate their vehicles. This is a special license that is only issued to those who can safely operate a large truck. Unqualified drivers are more likely to cause truck accidents. In addition, there are regulations in place that outline how much time a trucker can spend on the road before taking a rest break. The aim of these regulations is to prevent driver fatigue, which is a common cause of truck accidents.

Exploding sunroofs may be newest widespread vehicle defect

In recent years, there have been major recalls issued for defects with automobiles in the United States and worldwide. There was the Toyota sudden unintended acceleration scandal. There are was the Takata exploding airbag recall. There have been countless others involving defective tires, seat belts, and SUVs predisposed to dangerous rollover accidents.

In each case, it took time for regulators and automakers to acknowledge and address the problems. And during that time, more and more drivers got hurt or killed. The newest auto defect that many of us have yet to hear about may just be the most bizarre: exploding sunroofs.

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