Distracted Driving Causes 6 in 10 Teen Crashes
The disturbing results of a study conducted by the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety found that more than half of all teen crashes involve driver distraction. A recent Huffington Post article reported on the research. Distracted driving was found to be a factor in 58 percent of teen crashes. Nearly 6 out of every 10 moderate to severe crashes involving teens also involved some type of distraction behind the wheel.
Distractions Behind the Wheel
Perhaps not surprisingly, the most common distractions included interacting with other passengers and cell phone usage. The study analyzed almost 1,700 dashboard camera (dashcam) videos. Researchers observed and recorded the behavior in the moments prior to an accident.
Teen Distracted Driving Research Results
• 6 out of 10 teen crashes involve distracted driving.
• 15 percent of crashes involved drivers interacting with one or more passenger.
• 12 percent of crashes involved using a cell phone.
• 10 percent involved looking at something in the vehicle.
• Teens using cell phones were found to have their eyes off the road for about 4.1 seconds out of the final 6 seconds leading to a crash.
Teen Driver Safety
Although these numbers are significantly higher than previous studies, one thing is for sure. Distracted driving is an epidemic in teen and adult drivers across the country. AAA reports that teen drivers also have the highest crash rate of any driver age group.
5 to Drive
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has a variety of tools and resources for parents of teen drivers. Their “5 to Drive” rules are probably the most appropriate set of teen safe driving guidelines given the results of this study.
1. No Cell Phones
2. No Extra Passengers
3. No Speeding
4. No Alcohol
5. Always Buckle Up
Accidents Involving Teen Drivers in California
The aftermath of a car accident can be difficult for anybody to handle. No matter what the cause, it’s a good idea to speak with a personal injury lawyer. Insurance companies can be pushy too, so you should have somebody on your side.
All-Terrain-Vehicle (ATV) Safety in California
As All-Terrain-Vehicles (ATV’s) get more and more popular in California and across the nation, we’re seeing an increase in fatal and injury-causing recreational vehicle crashes. According to the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), California has more ATV-related deaths than any other state. Between 1982 and 2007, 504 people in California have died in ATV-related crashes. ATV’s can weigh up to 600 lbs and go as fast as 65 miles per hour, so safe operation and protective gear are absolutely critical in keeping riders safe.
ATV Related Injuries and Fatalities
• In 2012, there were over 100,000 ATV-related injuries across the nation.
• About a quarter of those injury crashes involved children under the age of 16.
• About 27 percent of those injuries involved the head or neck.
• On Average, 568 adults die in ATV crashes each year.
• Approximately 144 children die in ATV-related crashes each year.
Safe ATV Operation
The CPSC offers a variety of great tips for safe ATV operation. Riders are always encouraged to wear safety gear including helmets, eye protection, boots, gloves, long pants, and long-sleeved shirts. Equally important is training from a qualified instructor. Additionally, it’s important to stay off of paved roads. If you do have to cross a paved road, exercise additional caution and go slow. Finally, never let a child under the age of 16 ride on an adult ATV. Children are especially vulnerable when riding recreational vehicles that were designed for adults. It’s a recipe for disaster.
ATV Accidents in San Diego & The Central Coast
Since many people are injured on other people’s ATV’s each year, remember to exercise caution if a friend offers you their recreational vehicles. This is absolutely critical if they’re not able to provide training or safety gear, like well-fitted helmets. It’s possible to underestimate the risks involved with ATV’s if they’re lightheartedly offered as recreation to friends and guests.
Musician David Crosby Struck Jogger
Singer and songwriter David Crosby has been announced as the driver that struck and injured a jogger last Sunday evening in Santa Ynez. According to Santa Barbara’s Noozhawk, the incident happened sometime before 6:00 p.m. on Baseline Avenue. Crosby was driving a 2015 Tesla at the time. He was reportedly driving into the sun and did not see the male jogger on the right side of the road.
The jogger, 46-year-old Jose Jimenez, was airlifted to Santa Barbara Cottage Hospital for treatment of injuries. Thankfully, his injuries were not considered life threatening, but he did suffer from multiple fractures, abrasions and lacerations. This crash is still under investigation with the California Highway Patrol.
The team at Harris Personal Injury Lawyers, Inc. wishes Jimenez a full and speedy recovery from his injuries.
Motorcyclist Injured in Semi Truck Crash
On Tuesday morning, a motorcyclist was injured in a crash involving a tractor-trailer in Lakeside. According to ABC Channel 10 News, the incident happened sometime around 6:26 a.m. on State Route 67, near Slaughterhouse Canyon. For currently unknown reasons, the two vehicles collided. Northbound and southbound lanes of the highway had to be closed as first responders and crews worked the scene.
The motorcyclist was airlifted to a hospital for treatment. At this time, there’s no word on the motorcyclist’s condition or the extent of injuries involved. Very few details have been released, and the cause of this crash could still be under investigation.
Mechanical Issue Causes Bicycle Crash
On Sunday, a cyclist was severely injured in a crash that’s being attributed to a mechanical problem. According to Santa Barbara’s Noozhawk, the incident happened at about 12:10 p.m., near the 1000 block of North H Street in Lompoc. Apparently, the cyclist was headed southbound on H Street when a mechanical problem with the bicycle caused him or her to be thrown over the front of the bike and into the roadway.
Very few details have been released about this crash. At this time, we don’t know the victim’s name, age, gender or hometown. That person was taken to Marion Regional Medical Center for treatment of life-threatening injuries. As of Monday, the status was listed as critical.
DUI Hit and Run in San Diego
Early Monday morning, a suspected drunk driver was involved in a hit-and-run crash in San Diego. According to ABC Channel 10 News, the incident happened sometime around 2:00 a.m., in the 1700 block of Columbia Street, south of Elm Street. Apparently, the driver of a white sedan crashed into a parked SUV and several other vehicles before fleeing the scene on foot.
The driver then returned to the scene and harassed the owner of the SUV, who was outside photographing the damage to the vehicle. A fight ensued, and the suspect took the cell phone and fled again. Police were able to apprehend the suspected drunk driver when he once again returned to the scene, this time with his wife. Thankfully, no injuries were reported with this crash.
$10 Million Civil Penalty Against Graco
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has recently issued a press release regarding a $10 million civil penalty being brought against well-known car seat manufacturer Graco. According to the press release, Graco will pay $3 million into U.S. Treasury and $7 million for new steps to improve child safety after failing to launch a timely recall of defective car seats.
Failing to Protect Precious Cargo
Children, babies, infants and toddlers are arguably the most precious cargo on the road. Parents and caregivers count on car seats to perform as promised. Understandably, with any type of manufacturing, things can go wrong. Mechanical and human error can account for a wide variety of potential problems in just about any manufacturing plant. This isn’t why Graco is in hot water. Graco has been slapped with the civil penalties because they failed to launch a recall as swiftly as possible.
Defective Auto Parts in 2014
Sadly, Graco isn’t the only automotive safety manufacturer to drag their feet about issuing recalls. In the last year, we’ve seen problems related to deadly ignition switches and exploding air bags. One problem after another, and each time we see manufacturers failing to take appropriate steps in a timely manner.
Holding Manufacturers Accountable
Hopefully, this multi-million-dollar civil penalty will send a message to other parts and safety seat manufacturers across the country. If you fail to protect consumers by delaying potentially life saving recalls, you will be held accountable for you actions. If manufacturers thought recalls were expensive, wait until they’re slapped with penalties for failing to comply with federal safety regulations. In the past, many manufacturers were able to somehow get a pass or slide under the radar for waiting on recalls. With more press and information availability, that’s just not the case anymore.
Dangerous Products in California
Recalls can take months, if not years to happen. Dangerous, defective and faulty products could be available to consumers in California and across the nation. If you think an auto part of child safety seat is defective, you need to report it to the NHTSA and manufacturer immediately.
Pedestrian Killed on I-5
On Thursday night, multiple vehicles fatally hit a pedestrian in Interstate 5. According to NBC San Diego Channel Seven News, the incident happened just before 8:30 p.m. in the southbound lanes, near 28th Street in Logan Heights. Apparently, the pedestrian was trying to cross I-5, when he was struck multiple times.
At least three lanes had to be closed as emergency responders and law enforcement authorities worked the scene. Since several of the cars had children in them, counselors with a Traumatic Intervention Program were made available upon request. Very few details have been released about why the pedestrian was in the roadway, but he was initially believed to be transient.
The team at Harris Personal Injury Lawyers, Inc. sends their deepest condolences out to his family members and friends.
Injured ATV Rider Near Pt. Sal
On Thursday afternoon, an ATV rider was injured in a crash near Pt. Sal. According to Santa Barbara’s Noozhawk, the incident happened sometime around 2:45 p.m. Apparently, the rider crashed on the side of a hill, near the northern boundary of Vandenberg Air Force Base. First responders from Santa Barbara County Fire Department and the Air Force base rushed to the scene.
Paramedics had to be hoisted to the remote location to retrieve the injured victim. The injured ATV rider was transported to Marian Regional Medical Center for treatment of moderate injuries. At this time, we don’t know the full extent of injuries involved or the rider’s current condition.
The team at Harris Personal Injury Lawyers, Inc. wishes the injured ATV rider a full and swift recovery.
The Dangers of a Rollover Crash
Rollover accidents are among some of the most dangerous and deadly types of crashes on the road. They often occur at high speeds, in desolate locations and can leave victims with catastrophic or fatal injuries. Understanding the risk factors associated with rollover accidents and how to minimize your risk will help to keep you safe on California roadways.
Who is Most at Risk?
• Approximately 40 percent of fatal rollover crashes involved excessive speeding.
• Rollover crashes account for 33 percent of all passenger vehicle fatalities.
• You’re 75 percent less likely to be killed in a rollover crash if you’re wearing a seat belt.
• Almost three-quarters of all fatal rollover crashes occur in rural areas.
• More than 10,000 people a year are killed in rollover crashes.
• Taller, narrow vehicles, like SUV’s, are more likely to rollover.
Higher Fatality Rate
For a variety of reasons, rollover crashes have a higher fatality rate than many other types of crashes. In 2010, rollover crashes accounted for almost 35 percent of all deaths from passenger vehicle crashes. Over 7,600 people died in rollover crashes that year, and nearly 70 percent of them were not bucked up at the time of the crash. Since the majority of rollover-related fatalities (85 percent) occur in one-vehicle crashes, driver behavior is the most important factor in preventing this type of wreck.
Minimize Your Risk By:
• Avoiding panic-like steering
• Knowing proper maneuvering behind the wheel
• Knowing your tire pressure and loading limits
• Using caution on rural roads
After a Rollover Crash in San Diego
If you or a loved one has been injured in a rollover crash in San Diego, speaking to an experienced personal injury lawyer needs to be a top priority. Rollover accident are traumatic, to say the least. In addition to extensive physical injury, victims can be left with painful emotional scars surrounding the event. Whether you’re recovering from your injuries in the hospital or you’re taking care of a loved one after a rollover accident, speaking with an attorney is the most important step you can take to begin putting the pieces back together.
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