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Monthly Archives: December 2012

Will Aging Populations Up The Risk of Auto Accidents?

Dec 29, 2012 - Car Accidents by

We are about to ring in 2013! As baby boomers age and move into retirement, the population in the United States is about to have the largest percentage of elderly individuals in its history. This has a lot of implications, but one concern shared by many is what the changing population mix is going to do to the rate of auto accidents. Many believe that more elderly drivers on the road is going to up the risk of crashes. But a recent status report from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) indicates that these worries may be unfounded. Our Tuscaloosa injury attorneys want to take a close look at the recent IIHS report addressing the impact of older drivers on car accident risks. We also urge elderly drivers and the family members of elderly drivers to remember that every person’s situation is different and that there may come a time when the reality must be faced that driving safely is no longer an option for a particular senior.  The IIHS Data on The “Silver Tsunami” and Auto Accidents Referring to the aging of the baby boomers as the “silver tsunami,” IIHS provided some information on the rates of auto accident claims made by seniors in order to get a better grasp of what the aging of so many of the drivers on the roads would do to the accident risks.

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Drivers: Make This New Years Eve a Sober One

Dec 26, 2012 - Birmingham by

New Years Eve is a time for celebrating and ringing in the New Year. Unfortunately, it is also a time when many people go out and have more drinks than they should and end up driving home. Drinking and driving over the holiday season is a major problem throughout Alabama and there are tragic cases every year where someone goes out on New Years Eve and doesn’t make it home. Our injury attorneys in Birmingham urge every driver to make a commitment not to drink and drive this New Years holiday. We also urge bars and restaurants to take steps to provide solutions to patrons that will prevent them from drinking and driving. And we urge party-goers to keep an eye on their friends to make sure that no one gets in a car after having too many drinks.  The New Years Drinking and Driving Dangers According to Mothers Against Drunk Driving, there were 259 deaths in Alabama related to drunk driving in 2011. While these deaths occurred throughout the year, the holiday season is an especially common time for drunk driving crashes. In fact, crashes are so likely around the holiday season that the Alabama Law Enforcement Traffic and Safety Division is participating in the 2012 Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over campaign.

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Safe Holiday Shopping – Premises Liability in Alabama

Dec 20, 2012 - Personal Injury by

Shopping for gifts, entertaining guests and decorating are all hallmarks of the holiday season. In doing all of these activities, there is a good chance that you will be visiting grocery stores, department stores, big box stores and shopping malls — probably more so than at any other time during the year. As you make your way to the mall and other retail outlets, it is important that you do everything in your power to stay safe. Our injury attorneys in Birmingham have some advice to help you avoid some potential dangers so you don’t fall victim to a holiday shopping accident.  Staying Safe at the Shopping Mall This Season Whether you are in a grocery store, department store, mall or other shopping venue over the holidays, there are certain things that present a risk to your safety and that could result in injury. Knowing about the risks and using a little bit of extra caution can go a long way towards avoiding injury. For example, some of the common sources of danger or potential risks to be aware of include:

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Hosting a Safe Holiday Party in Alabama

Dec 19, 2012 - Personal Injury by

The holiday season is a time for hosting parties and inviting guests into your home. When you have people over, you want to make sure that they have a good time and enjoy the celebration. However, you also have a more important responsibility — making sure that your guests are safe and that they do not present a danger to themselves or to others. Our injury attorneys in Tuscaloosa want to remind hosts and hostesses of their obligations when they invite guests into their home this holiday season. We also have some tips for those hosting parties to help ensure that the guests are safe and that the host doesn’t become legally liable for injury. Your Obligation To Your Guests When you invite people to your home for the holidays, you have an obligation to make sure that your house is reasonably safe. You should correct any hidden dangers or hazards that exist on the premises, or in the alternative, warn your guests of any hidden dangers or hazards. This means if you have a sidewalk that is prone to getting slippery; a loose or wiggly railing; broken steps or any other potential hazards in your home, you may want to fix them before inviting guests. If there are things you can’t fix, let your guests know of the problem so they aren’t in danger of hurting themselves while visiting.

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Alabama Nursing Home Neglect a Holiday Concern

Dec 15, 2012 - Nursing Home Neglect by

If you have elderly family members or friends in a nursing home, there’s a good chance that you will be paying them a visit over the holidays. While you are enjoying each other’s company and having a festive celebration, the visit should also give you a chance to talk to your loved one and to observe his or her behavior. Carefully observe the condition of the home and other residents. Our Tuscaloosa nursing home abuse attorneys have discussed the subject of nursing home abuse before, including last month when we wrote about the tragic death of a 94-year-old-woman killed in an Alabama nursing home fire drill. We want to urge you to take extra care this holiday season to ensure our elderly loved ones are treated with the care and respect they deserve. According to a 2011 article in The News Courier, adult protective services referred 5,312 possible abuse cases to the Department of Human Resources for investigation in the prior year. In the majority of abuse situations investigated, the alleged abuse was directed at a person aged 75 to 84. Although 5,312 abuse cases is a staggering number, these investigations may reflect only a small portion of the abuse that is actually occurring. The National Center on Elder Abuse estimates that anywhere between 1 and 2 million seniors age 65 and older throughout the U.S. are abused but that many cases of abuse go unreported since the elderly aren’t able to speak up for themselves or to get the […]

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Alabama Traffic Accidents on the Rise, Despite Nationwide Decrease

Dec 12, 2012 - Car Accidents by

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), the total number of car accident fatalities in 2011 was down close to 2 percent from 2010 numbers. Statistics released this week for 2011 sound like good news, right? Let’s take a closer look. Our Tuscaloosa car accident attorneys understand that the number of bicyclist, pedestrian and motorcyclist fatalities actually increased. The main reason credited for the overall decrease in the number of traffic accidents is because the total number of vehicle miles traveled was down. With the struggling economy and the rising gas prices, less were driving and more were traveling on foot, on a bicycle or on a motorcycle. Because of that, accidents were more prevalent among these travelers.

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Alabama Trucking Accidents — FMCSA Seeks Carrier Shutdown Authority

Dec 6, 2012 - Truck Accidents by

Last month, our Birmingham truck accident lawyers discussed proposed changes to Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) rules. The changes will give FMCSA broader authority to suspend or revoke the operating licenses of motor carriers if they show egregious disregard for compliance with safety rules or if they close up shop when placed out of service for safety violations, only to open under a new name. Our truck accident attorneys in Birmingham are wholly in support of efforts to make it easier for FMCSA to stop motor carriers from engaging in unsafe practices that could hurt innocent victims. Today, we want to take a closer look at some of the reasons why the new rule is necessary to give FMCSA the authority it needs.  The Implications of Proposed Changes In December of 2010, the Service Center Director for the Midwestern Service Center published a report entitled “Patterns of Safety Violations by Motor Carrier Management Practical Implications on Investigations and Enforcement.”

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Birmingham Teens at High Risk of Winter Traffic Crashes

Dec 4, 2012 - Birmingham by

This winter season, many teen drivers will be getting their drivers’ licenses for the first time. Others will be going into their first winter driving season, and still others who are away at college will be driving home for their winter break. If you are the parent of a teen driver, you may have concerns about your child’s safety during the dangerous winter driving months. These concerns aren’t unfounded since Centers for Disease Control reports indicate that car accident deaths are the leading cause of death for kids ages 16-19. Parents who want to protect their teens from dangerous driving behavior need to be vigilant in making sure that their kids know safe driving rules and that they don’t fall into dangerous situations. Our injury attorneys in Birmingham urge parents to take some time over winter break this year to sit down and talk to their kids about how to reduce the risk of accidents and be a more responsible, safer driver. 

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