Memphis Personal Injury Law Blog

Starting a new job and the risk of a wreck

There are many times in a person’s life when a motor vehicle collision may be more likely. Someone driving during poor road conditions may have an increased chance of crashing with another vehicle or veering off the road. Other situations may also lead to a greater car accident risk, including those which may not seem significant. For example, someone who starts a new job may be more likely to cause an accident for multiple reasons and it is essential to be vigilant if you have recently switched fields or plan to work somewhere else in the near future.

First of all, starting a new job can mean completely changing one’s daily driving routine. Drivers may be unfamiliar with roads in the area where their new position is located, and they may also lack familiarity with traffic patterns. Starting a new job can also be very tiresome and may cause a driver to become fatigued, whether they have to wake up at a different time or they are not used to working long hours. Driver fatigue is a serious concern and has played a role in many motor vehicle collisions.

Understanding why a truck driver may speed

While certainly not something that is encouraged, speeding is a practice that many motorists in Shelby may fall into in certain situations. And while it certainly is not acceptable, most can comprehend why drivers may do it. What may be next to impossible to grasp, however, is why one driving a large semi-truck or tractor-trailer would even consider it. The very nature of their vehicle's makes them difficult to control, and speeding only compounds that difficulty. Yet why then would the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration cite speeding as being one of the most common causes of truck accidents? 

It turns out the truck drivers are just like regular motorists: they feel the pressure to arrive on time, as well. Some might wonder whether showing up at a destination 10-15 minutes late is worth potentially risking one's life (as well as those on the road around them). When a major element of one's job is timeliness, however, the pressure to cut corners (in this case, by speeding) may be ever present. 

One in three teens texts while driving, according to research

We have all heard how dangerous it is. We all know we shouldn’t do it. Many people do it anyway, and teenagers more than most. Texting while driving causes accidents and kills people every day. The Journal of Adolescent Health has released new research finding that nearly 40 percent of all teens had texted or emailed within a 30-day span.

 

Staying safe in the parking lot during the holidays

'Tis the season for crowded parking lots and hurried pedestrians. If you have been to the shopping centers in Memphis lately, you may have experienced the chaos yourself. Over the course of a year, over 50,000 crashes happen in parking lots and garages nationwide. These crashes caused over 60,000 injuries and 500 deaths. Parking lots are the most dangerous at this time of year, with the extra traffic on wheels and on foot. What exactly makes them so dangerous and how can you stay safe while doing your holiday shopping? 

What should you teach your children about bicycle safety?

When your children express their excitement and enthusiasm to ride their bicycle to school or around your neighborhood in Tennessee, it is a prime opportunity to give them some pointers on how to stay safe especially around cars. When you teach them about bicycle safety and positively encourage responsible behavior, you and your children will be more confident in their ability to make wise decisions that will serve to protect them. 

If your child wears a helmet, that is an excellent first step. However, it is imperative that you make sure that their helmet is properly fitted to their head and that they understand how to secure it the right way. According to KidsHealth, your child's helmet should cover his or her forehead and be sitting level on his or her head. If you have girls, remind them to wear appropriate hairstyles that will allow their helmet to fit the right way. The straps should be tightened and you may consider having your child help you add reflective stickers to increase visibility. Teach your child how to take proper care of his or her helmet to make it last a long time. 

Latest collision at Germantown railroad crossing kills couple

When cars take on trains, it may be easy to deduce who wins. Recent years have seen increased efforts to educate motorists in Shelby (and throughout the rest of the U.S.) on the importance of exercising caution and sound judgment around railroad crossings. The question of liability in cases where trains collide with cars may seem like a moot point. A train cannot, after all, deviate from its tracks, so short of operator negligence, blame for such accidents may almost always fall on the part of the motorists involved. Yet what about cases where warning systems meant to alert drivers of approaching trains fail? 

A certain railroad crossing in Germantown is beginning to develop a reputation with transportation officials for being quite troublesome. At least six accidents have been reported there since 1975, with three resulting in fatalities. The first occurred in 1975, followed by a high school student being killed in a collision 19 years later. The most recent fatal accident occurred this month when a vehicle carrying an elderly couple was hit by a passing train. Both the husband and wife were killed in the accident. After this most recent incident, authorities tested the railroad crossing arms extensively to see if a system failure might have led to the collision. 

What should I do after a car crash?

Unfortunately, auto accidents happen all too often in Tennessee. If you become involved in one, you need to take some immediate steps to prevent an already bad situation from becoming even worse. The decisions you make right after your accident could affect you for months or years to come.

As FindLaw explains, the most important thing you should do is to stay at the scene of the accident if at all possible until law enforcement officers arrive and tell you you can leave. If you leave too quickly, you could receive a ticket for leaving the scene or even for hit-and-run driving.

Red light cameras may not make Memphis roads safer

Most Memphis drivers are probably familiar with red light cameras. The cameras are posted at intersections around the city.

When a traffic light is red, sensors embedded in the road will trigger the camera if a car drives over the stop line. The camera then takes a picture of a driver’s license plate. The city then sends the driver a ticket for running a red light.

Do others have a duty to render aid?

The immediate aftermath of a car accident in Shelby can be quite traumatic. You may suffer an initial shock over what has happened, which ultimately may turn to panic if you and/or others in your vehicle sustain injuries. Your fears that the longer it takes for you to be treated, the greater the danger you may face are well-founded. Fortunately, you are often not alone in such accidents; the other motorists involved may be available to assist you. While there's no question that you hope that they feel compelled to, the question becomes whether they are legally obligated to. 

According to Tennessee state law, they are. Section 55-10-103 of Tennessee's state Code says that anyone involved in accident is required to render aid to accident victims. The requirement applies not only to the driver who caused the accident, but anyone involved who is physically capable of helping others. Yet while you understand the duty to render aid, you might not know to what extent it is expected. 

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