Supreme Court Makes Suing Corporations Over Defective and Dangerous Products Easier

  The Supreme Court recently released a unanimous 8-0 ruling that will help individuals injured by defective and dangerous products overcome jurisdictional hurdles in filing a lawsuit. The case, Ford Motor Co. v. Montana Eighth Judicial District Court, involved two car accidents – one occurring in Montana and another in Minnesota. The first accident involved a driver traveling near her home when her Ford Explorer’s tread suddenly separated from a read tire. The second incident stemmed from a Ford vehicle with an air bag that failed to deploy. The consolidated lawsuits were each brought in the states where the respective…

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Staying Safe During Daylight Saving Time

This Sunday marks the beginning of Daylight Saving Time. While we certainly want to “spring forward” and update our clocks, statistics tell us we should pay special attention while on the road. Last January, the University of Colorado at Boulder released a study of the tragic effect daylight savings has on drivers. Analyzing 732,000 accidents over two decades, the study found that the annual spring switch to daylight savings increases the rate of fatal car accidents by 6% during the week following the change. The findings are in line with more general research that suggests the one-hour loss due to…

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The Dangers of Daylight Saving Time: How Can You Avoid Them?

  Daylight Saving Time isn’t a mere annoyance — it’s a verifiable source of danger. Every year, motor vehicle accidents and fatalities skyrocket right after we move the clocks forward or back. The human body simply can’t handle this sudden change. With a little preparation, however, it’s possible to plan ahead and avoid the worst of this dreaded date: Build Light Into Your Transportation Things are about to get a whole lot darker as we fall back. Spotting road hazards is tough enough when dealing with disrupted sleep, but the increased darkness certainly doesn’t help matters. A few simple steps…

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Driving Safety Tips After Taking a Break Due to Lockdown

  After a long break from school or work, you’re about to resume some semblance of normalcy, complete with a mask and social distancing. You’re also going to discover the greatest silver lining of quarantine: no commute. Now that you’re back on the road, you might be surprised by how rusty your driving skills have become. Keep these auto safety tips in mind as you once again get behind the wheel: Review Your Vehicle’s Maintenance If your car has been sitting in the garage for several months, you’ve likely acquired a case of ‘lot rot,’ in which a lack of…

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Highway Fatality Rates Increase Despite Less Drivers on the Road

  The National Safety Council has reported that, based on preliminary nationwide data from May, people traveling by roads had a higher risk of dying from a motor vehicle crash for the third month in a row. We previously wrote about this issue in May, and the trend of more dangerous driving has continued. The fatality rate is a measure of deaths due to collisions per 100 million vehicle miles. The fatality rate includes deaths of drivers, passengers, pedestrians, cyclists, etc., and is a good indicator of dangerous driving. The number of miles driven in May 2020 decreased by 25.5%…

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Driving Down, Speeding Up

  This week, the Washington Post reported that instances of reckless driving have increased substantially across the country since March, when nearly every state implemented a “stay at home” order. While traffic nationwide is down 41%, automobile crashes are down only 21%, and some of the country’s most congested traffic areas have reported dramatic increases in average speeds. For example, the speed limit on the DMV’s Capital Beltway is 55 mph, but speeds during the pre-pandemic rush hour averaged only 27 mph. Now, Beltway drivers are traveling at an average speed of 70 mph during what used to be rush…

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COVID-19: Impacts on Driving Behavior and Lessons

The COVID-19 crisis has impacted our lives in countless ways. It has also changed our behaviors.  The following are some observations and suggestions. Less Vehicles on the Road There are far fewer automobiles on the road, but accidents still occur. In keeping with social-distancing regulations, police officers in some areas of the country will not respond to the scene of a crash unless there is an emergency. Without a police response, a police report will not be generated. What to do if in a crash: Take photographs of the property damage to your vehicle and all other involved automobiles; Obtain…

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Vehicle Safety Recalls Week Promotes Checking Your Car For Outstanding Recalls

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has declared this week to be Vehicle Safety Recalls week. The dedicated week is meant to remind Americans to check their car for active recalls. It is scheduled as the week leading up to the beginning of daylight savings to encourage people to check their recalls at least twice a year, once as daylight savings time starts and once as it ends. Check Your Car For a Recall Checking your car for a recall is simple, just enter your VIN (found on the lower left of your car’s windshield) into www.nhtsa.gov/recalls. This website will…

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Pedestrians are at Increased Risk of Collision if Distracted by Phones

According to the National Safety Council, over 90% of car crashes involve human error–awareness is key to avoiding collisions whether you are in the car or a pedestrian. Pedestrian Fatalities According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the number of pedestrian fatalities in 2018 reached 6,283, the highest since 1990. Pedestrian fatalities account for nearly 20% of all traffic crashes in 2018 in the United States. Distraction plays a role in many of the crashes that occur in either the driver, pedestrian, or both. Pedestrian Distraction While many know of the effects of distracted driving on accident rates, people…

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The Top Dangers of Ice — And How to Handle Them

Whether you’re walking, driving, or performing household maintenance, ice poses a huge risk to your health and wellbeing. A brief encounter can lead to everything from broken hips to traumatic brain injuries, as highlighted below: Pedestrian Dangers Keeping your balance can be tricky when you set foot on ice — especially if it’s obscured by a thin layer of snow. Seniors and easily injured individuals are especially prone to ice-related falls. These can cause a wide range of acute health issues or exacerbate chronic conditions. Options for reducing the risk of falling include: Regularly treating your driveway and sidewalk. Using…

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