New DUI Laws Going Into Effect In 2022

You would never know it from the headlines that greet you every morning, but 2022 will mark changes to many laws governing penalties for Driving Under the Influence (DUI). Many states have implemented such changes in order to strengthen existing laws. You might see a stronger police presence on the roads during the holidays. You might see more checkpoints where none existed before. 

One bipartisan $78 billion transportation bill currently sitting in Congress is aimed at reducing the number of DUI fatalities. Tens of thousands of people are killed in automobile accidents every year, 10,000 of which are the result of alcohol. 

The bill is part of the larger $1 trillion infrastructure package. $17 billion has been set aside for auto safety. The bill’s language says that all vehicles made starting in 2026 must include technology to “passively monitor the performance of a driver of a motor vehicle to accurately identify whether that driver may be impaired.”

Those convicted of DUI will know that similar technologies — albeit not passive ones — already exist and are in use. Sometimes those convicted must use a breathalyzer attached to the vehicle before the car will unlock. Fail the breathalyzer and you cannot drive the car. But new technologies would need to be developed to make the same system work passively. 

What you might not already know is that several automakers are already working on it. BMW, General Motors and Nissan are trying to make cars with infrared cameras that check for inattentiveness or impairment to save lives. If the driver shows signs of impairment, a warning sounds. Continue the behavior, and the warning becomes louder. If the behavior continued after that, then the car would automatically trip the hazard lights, decelerate, and pull to the side of the road. No word on whether or not the authorities would automatically be called. 

Other safety features (like emergency braking) that are mostly standardized already will become so by law.

Traveling Abroad: What Is A “Smart” Motorway?

Claire Mercer had no idea a routine farewell to her husband would be the last. Her husband Jason was dead only fifteen minutes after they shared what would be a final breakfast — killed by a massive tractor trailer traveling down a “smart motorway” that most British citizens would have recognized as a hard shoulder on the side of the highway.

He was 44 years old at the time of his death this past June.

Jason is also only one of five people who have been killed along that 16-mile smart motorway in the past year. The man who was operating the vehicle was temporarily put into police custody because of the incident, but he was released on bail. Claire isn’t blaming the 39-year-old man who killed her husband — she’s blaming Highways England, and suing for wrongful death.

Coroners who have to deal with the aftermath of these accidents agree that more people will wind up in the morgue if something isn’t done immediately. This was a direct response to the death of Dev Naran, an eight-year-old Leicester boy who died when his grandfather was forced to park on the shoulder.

Claire believes that normally dangerous roadways like these would force traffic organizations to search for ways to mitigate the danger and end the practice of smart motorways — but instead, new ones are popping up.

Smart motorways exist to increase the flow of traffic by opening up shoulders to vehicles. According to their creators, they use “traffic management” tech to manipulate traffic patterns along certain roads. These smart motorways use variable speed limits and remove the hard shoulder. The traffic management tech displays a red “X” above the lane if someone breaks down on the now open shoulder. 

Naturally, it doesn’t always work — and people are the ones paying the price.

Jason was in a small car accident. Six minutes later, his vehicle was still parked on the shoulder, but computers hadn’t registered the accident or displayed the red “X.”

And of course, one must wonder whether or not 100 percent of the vehicles on the road would be paying close enough attention to notice the “X” and avert a tragedy.

Opponents of smart motorways call them death traps.

Since these lanes have opened up to traffic, the entirety of motorway deaths has increased by a massive eight percent, which amounts to 107 fatalities in the last two years.

When traveling abroad, it’s important that Americans know about these smart motorways. It may just be best to avoid them completely. Finding compensation for accidents that occur in another country can be difficult and time-consuming, but it is possible. If you were in an accident in the United Kingdom, call a personal injury lawyer for a free consult.

What To Do If Your Uber Driver Has An Accident

Getting into a car with a driver who you don’t know might be a source of apprehension for many people, but for others it’s a walk in the park. Either way, sometimes the worst happens and things just go wrong. Whether or not your Uber driver is at fault, what happens when he gets into an automobile accident? Does the company have insurance? Will you be taken care of? Here are a few things you should do immediately if your Uber driver has an accident.

  1. One of the largest rumors circulated about Uber as a company is that it does not maintain insurance for its drivers, and therefore the burden of coverage would land on the passenger in the case of an accident. This is a myth. It only exists because of the constant battling between the traditional taxi industry and rideshare companies.
  2. Uber maintains insurance for its drivers, and mandates that the drivers themselves have another layer of insurance on top of their own personal insurance. If an accident occurs, you can make a claim to part of this coverage for either personal injury or property damage. When your Uber driver gets into an accident, be sure to take this information down.
  3. Report the accident to the police, to Uber, and to a personal injury law firm in order to ensure that all your bases are fully covered. You can report these incidents to Uber directly through the app itself.
  4. If there were other drivers involved, be sure to get their insurance information as well. This might seem redundant since the Uber driver should already have done this, but always assume that the other parties involved won’t do what they should do.
  5. Seek immediate medical attention for any injuries incurred during the accident–or any that develop as a result–and document information like bills, psychological trauma, etc. If you’re unable to work because of your injuries, then keep track of lost hours. You’ll also be able to acquire compensation for any permanent loss of productivity, so be sure to document in copious detail!

Don’t end up like the people in this video. Contact us today if you’ve been in an Uber accident!

10 Cars With The Highest Death Rate

If you’re on the lookout for a new vehicle, then be sure to research the safety standards of available manufacturers. Some are obviously safer than others, but numbers are still too high even as your overall chances of a deadly accident have gone down. Here are the ten cars with the highest likelihood of fatality in the event of an accident.

  1. Beware of the Kia Rio. Even though your new car is tiny, it has the highest rate of being involved in accidents with multiple other vehicles. On top of that, there are 149 deaths for every million registered vehicle years.
  2. The Nissan Versa sedan suffers from 130 deaths for every million years, and although drivers experience fewer crashes involving more than one vehicle, your chances of getting into a single car accident are actually higher. You also have an extraordinary chance of rolling over during an accident.
  3. If you own a 4-door Hyundai Accent mini, you’re slightly less likely to be involved in a fatal accident–the rate falls to 120 deaths per million years. The rate of multiple or single vehicle crashes is moderate, as is the number of rollovers.
  4. The Chevrolet Aveo experiences 99 driver deaths per million years, and a high number of accidents with multiple other vehicles involved.
  5. The 2-door Hyundai Accent mini is slightly safer than it’s 4-door alternative, with 86 overall deaths per million hours.
  6. Sports cars can be dangerous as well, if you’re not careful. If you own a Chevrolet Camaro coupe, there are 80 deaths per million hours, and a greater number of single vehicle collisions. Stop tailgating!
  7. The Chevrolet Silverado 1500 Crew pickup nets a rate of 79 deaths per millions of hours.
  8. A 2-door Honda Civic has a rate of 76 deaths per million hours, even if it does run for a million miles.
  9. A Nissan Versa hatchback with four doors is a slightly safer option, with 71 deaths per million hours.
  10. The 4-door Ford Focus is the safest car on our list of least safe cars, with a rate of 70 deaths per million hours.

In comparison, cars with the lowest death rates average a zero across the board for deaths per million registered vehicle years, multiple and single vehicle crashes, and rollovers. The Audi wins on that front.

What To Do After A Car Accident

When you’ve been in a car accident, the fight or flight response is activated. Unfortunately, you don’t have the option of fleeing. In this situation, you’re backed into a corner, and you have no choice but to deal with the consequences of unforeseen events head on. Even though your mind is flooded with unbelievable stress hormones, you should immediately make a checklist of the things you need to do.

First and foremost, ensure your own safety. Directly after a car accident, pull off to the side of the road. If the immediate area isn’t safe, try to signal any other drivers involved and pull into a nearby parking lot. If either vehicle is put out of commission and cannot be moved, mark the site of the accident with flares if you have them, and then move to the side of the road.

Once you know you’re safe, immediately alert the police that an accident has occurred. Although the police will try to find out as much as possible about what happened and who was at fault, be careful to limit what you say. Answer questions without elaboration and never admit fault.

If you have a camera, begin taking photographs of the site of the accident–but only if it’s safe to do so. You’ll want pictures of license plate numbers, the vehicle from every angle, and close-ups of any obvious damage to any vehicles involved in the accident. If you were hurt, take a quick picture of your injury.

After that, start trading information with anyone else involved. Find out insurance policy information, and then record license plate numbers and the make and model of the vehicles. If there were bystanders who witnessed the accident, record their contact information. If anyone gives you a hard time about getting information, simply inform the police when they arrive. Don’t risk getting into a heated argument or a physical confrontation. It won’t be worth it in the long run.

In the days following your accident, document medical bills and other expenses. Take pictures of any injuries on a daily basis. Create a journal in order to record your thoughts and feelings and other information about the accident. When you find a lawyer, this documentation can help tremendously.

Common Car Accident Injuries

Most Common Car Accident Injuries

AmbulanceWhen you are involved in a car accident, there is a good chance that at least one of the parties will suffer from some sort of injury. Car accident injuries range from mild, like cuts and cruises, to severe, like spinal cord injuries, and sometimes can result in death. A car accident threatens all areas of your body. Mostly, injuries happen to the upper body. This is due to the force of the airbags and the proximity of the steering wheel, windshield, and front dashboard.

Some of the most common car accident injuries are:

  • Head Injuries
    • Traumatic Brain Injuries (TBI)
    • Concussions
    • Skull fractures
    • Brain contusions
  • Back Injuries
    • Spinal cord injuries
    • Fractured vertebrae
    • Herniated disk
  • Neck Injuries
    • Whiplash
    • Muscle, ligament damage
    • Vocal cord paralysis
  • Chest Injuries
    • Bruised or broken ribs
    • Collapsed lung
    • Traumatic cardiac arrest
    • Internal bleeding
    • Damage to internal organs
  • Other Injuries
    • Broken Bones
    • Bruises or cuts
    • Ligament damage
    • Severed limbs
    • Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder

Car accident injuries can have life altering effects. Some injuries, like spinal cord injuries or traumatic brain injuries, can have long lasting effects. Typically, if you suffer a serious injury you will lose time at work and the medical expenses will begin to add up. If this sounds like your scenario, you should contact an experienced car accident attorney immediately. A car accident attorney will analyze your individual case and determine if you are entitled to compensation. Please, do not hesitate to contact an attorney.

If you are wondering how you are going to pay an attorney, it is important to know that most personal injury attorneys do not charge for an initial consultation nor do they charge you for a lost settlement. So basically, you only pay if you win.

What Are Some Of The Common Causes Of Truck Accidents?

There are a lot of ways that truck accidents happen. How do you know what they are so you can do your best to avoid them? Here are some of the causes so you don’t have to wonder about them any longer.

Truck drivers get tired and cause accidents on a regular basis. A lot of them work long hours, but legally they have to take breaks at certain times. That doesn’t, however, stop a lot of companies from pushing the limits and even going over them from time to time. If you are in an accident with a sleepy driver, you may end up being able to sue the company they work for. It may seem like common sense to get rest, but if your job depends on how much work you can do without sleeping it can be hard to rest enough.

Poor training is a cause for a lot of accidents. When someone is trying to get a job, they may be able to scrape by and not retain a lot of what they learned. That may lead to them not knowing how to control the truck or to know what the space is like around it they need to think about. This may also lead to them speeding or doing other things they are not supposed to do. An inexperienced trucker going through cities or down highways is dangerous for anyone to have to drive around.

If someone doesn’t take care of their truck, you can expect it to fail on them eventually. Sometimes poor truck maintenance leads to it not starting or something else while it’s stopped, but sometimes it leads to serious problems while they are on the road. That’s why it’s so important for truckers to stay on top of what they are doing at all times. Another reason someone may not take care of a truck is the cost of doing so. Problems are expensive, but the problem with being cheap is that the issues cost more as time goes on because they worsen.

The ways that a truck accident can happen are varied, but they all end in damages and/or injuries. If you want to avoid them, be a safer driver. Even then, you can’t control other people so always wear your seat-belt and be prepared for the worst when driving in any situation and contact a disability lawyer.

Stay Rested for Safe Driving

Many people are suffering from sleep deprivation these days due to the demanding lifestyle that is common. Perhaps it is because family needs are great and parents must go the extra mile to make sure their children are able to participate in the social and sports activities they they would like to.

Even if family responsibilities are not the reason for their lack of sleep, their career and/or personal relationships many be creating undue stress and sleeplessness. Whatever the reason for inadequate rest, people should make sure they are fully alert when they get behind the wheel of their automobile.

Most speed limits are at least 55 mph or higher on freeway systems and major highways, and an accident can happen in the blink of an eye at those speeds. When anyone is driving with any kind of impairment their reaction time can be too slow to keep their vehicle under control at all times. Everyone knows that driving under the influence of any type of substance is dangerous, and they can be severely fined or lose their drivers license if they are caught driving drunk or on drugs.

While driving under the influence is very risky, driving while exhausted or sleep deprived is dangerous as well. Many people get too little rest most of the time and they get up in the morning to drive to work with only a cup of coffee to get them moving. Even though caffeine may help them feel more awake, their reaction time is probably insufficient to help them avoid accidents like car crashes.

Driving in spite of feeling over-tired is just something people feel they must do in order to take care of all their responsibilities and get to work on time. There are answers to the dilemma, but it takes some organization and forethought to solve the problem.

Setting a regular schedule for evening activities will help in getting more rest, and preparing for morning is a step in the right direction. Set out breakfast the night before and decide which clothes to wear so no time is wasted in searching for the right outfit. Aiming to get to bed an hour earlier than usual will eventually become a goal that is easier to achieve.

A quick cool shower after the preferred caffeine source is a great way to get fully awake. Do not skip breakfast, but choose something that is quick and healthy such as a morning smoothie or something that can be prepared ahead of time.

What to Do If Injured in a Hit and Run

The most important thing to know is that your immediate actions after you have been injured in a hit and run will greatly affect your chances of being the responsible party to terms and receiving compensation.

If the Police are able to locate the driver and vehicle responsible for running you down, there is a better chance that you can file a lawsuit or a claim against their insurance provider. No matter which course of action you choose to pursue, you can count on an experienced personal injury attorney to present your case in the most advantageous way possible.

What to do in the Aftermath of a Hit and Run Incident

If you or someone you care about has been injured in a hit and run, the injured person will be disoriented and not thinking straight. Following are some of the steps that will need to be taken, if you are injured, get someone you trust to help you with taking these steps.

-Take a note on all the specifics you can remember about the vehicle that hit you. Remember the model, the color, and the state the plates are from. If you can’t remember this, jot down anything you do remember. Even the position of the driver relative to your location can give you a clue as the height of the vehicle.

-Take some photographic evidence to support your story. As the injured party, your testimony itself will be very important and carry clout. But, if you have some immediate pictures to take, it will make the story all the more believable.

-Get medical attention to be sure all aspects of your injuries are addressed. This includes asking your physician about any ongoing treatments or therapies you could require.

-Be careful what you say to the insurance companies. Remember they are looking to dodge responsibility and anything you say can give them a reason to not pay compensation. For example:

“Hello, I’m Mr. Swindler from the Shady Gray Insurance Co. How are you today?”
“I’m Fine”
“Then we have nothing further to discuss”

Any small admission of guilt or innocuous comment could be an excuse for them to short pay you. Just stick to the facts and nothing more. No pleasantries, no further comments, just the facts.

If the Police Department is able to catch the guilty parties, be sure to counsel with a reputable personal injury attorney. It is important to have a professional perspective guide you on this course to gain your rightful compensation and help you with estate planning after an injury.

Who Is Liable When Multi Vehicle Accidents Occur?

If you have recently been involved in a car accident, one that included multiple vehicles, there are many ways that you can sue for damages that were done. It is very common for lawyers to go after the insurance companies for every driver involved, and depending upon the nature of the injuries of their client, they may also sue individuals that were responsible for the accident. To determine who is liable in a multivehicle accident, this is up to the lawyer. They will need to gather as much information as possible about the incident in order to determine who they are going to sue.

What Information Should You Bring Them?

The information that you will provide will include the police report that you had done on the day of the accident. You will also need to provide any medical information pertaining to your injuries. Depending upon the nature of your injuries, the amount of your settlement could be substantial, particularly if you will be unable to work for quite some time as you recover from the injuries sustained. Finally, they will also look into what caused the accident, and if it was the result of a malfunction in a vehicle and not driver error, they can go after the manufacturer of the vehicle itself. Once you have brought them your medical reports, police report, and pictures of the accident, they will then do the rest.

How To Find The Best Attorney

The best attorney is going to be one that has represented hundreds of people for similar cases. You will want to search for multi-vehicle accident attorneys, and set appointments with the ones that you find. You can talk with them over the phone, and email them all of your information if you are unable to personally visit because of your injuries. They may even come to you if it is a substantial case where they are representing multiple clients from the same accident. You can see reviews of these different attorneys online, and based on what others have said, this can help you make your final choice. You may even be contacted by an attorney that is filing a class-action lawsuit against multiple parties involved, allowing you to benefit from all of the work that they are going to do for you.

Once you have found an attorney that can represent you, or one has approached you, you will soon know what to expect. Based upon the evidence that you provide, and the research that they will do, it is likely that you will receive a settlement for the multi-vehicle accident you were involved in.