The Johnson Law Firm, LLC

Saint Peters Legal Blog

Truck driver fatigue a concern with proposed easing of rules

Trucks will frequently go through Missouri as drivers get from one area of the nation to the other to make deliveries. These large vehicles can be a worry for those who share the road with them. Their size and speed are just part of the problem. Drivers might be under the influence, behave recklessly, be negligent or there could be an issue with the vehicle itself. All can cause a truck accident. Another problem that is common with truckers is truck driver fatigue. Rules from the Department of Transportation regulating how long drivers can drive at a single sitting are in place to prevent fatigue. However, the Trump administration is planning to ease the rules. This is sparking fear of drowsy drivers causing accident.

With the DOT considering increased flexibility for truckers, safety advocates fear that drivers would push to drive for extended periods and even continue when they are too tired to drive safely because there are no preventative measures in place. Currently, drivers can drive 11 hours in one day. Even with the rules, there were more than 4,600 fatal truck accidents in 2017. That was a rise of 10 percent from 2016. Sixty truckers were found to have been fatigued or asleep. The National Transportation Safety Board believes fatigue is an ongoing problem.

How to deal with a commercial truck insurance company

Insurance companies are not in claimants' corners. They often try to deny valid claims or delay payments to save themselves money. Dealing with a commercial trucking insurer after a collision can be difficult as the victim of a serious accident.

According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, 107,000 large trucks played roles in injury accidents from 2016 to 2017. In addition, large trucks were involved in 4,657 deadly collisions. If you get into a trucking accident in Missouri, protect yourself during claim negotiations with a few general tips.

Car accident study places Missouri teens among worst U.S. drivers

In Missouri and across the United States, teen drivers are on the road. This is a natural and inevitable occurrence. Every driver needs to start somewhere and most begin their life on the road in their teen years. While it is an exciting time and many teens are vigilant and cautious about their new responsibilities, there are still dangers due to inexperience. When adding in other factors like negligence, recklessness, texting and driving and driving under the influence, teens are one of the riskiest demographics of drivers.

Researchers examine teen behaviors and their auto accident rate and come to conclusions to try and improve safety. One new study says that Missouri is one of the lowest ranked states when it comes to teen driving. The study by WalletHub says that Missouri, overall, came in 48th out of 50 states. There were three main areas that WalletHub used to come to its conclusions: safety, obeying the law and financial. Missouri was third from the bottom in two of them.

Truck accidents could be due to rampant driver drug use

Truck safety is a common concern for Missourians who share the road with these large vehicles. This stems from the speeds at which they travel, the distances drivers must cover and the possibility of negligence, truck driver fatigue, distraction and being under the influence causing a crash. Industry experts are aware of the problems that trucks pose and seek to educate lawmakers and the public on the risks. After a truck accident, people who have been hurt or lost a loved one should know about the possibility that driver behavior was a cause as this can be a key factor in a legal filing.

In a recent meeting, the Trucking Alliance told Congress that a worrisome number of drivers manipulate drug testing procedures and, for safety, should be taken off the road. According to the Trucking Alliance, more than 150,000 aspiring truckers were asked to take part in two tests to determine if they had drugs in their systems. One was a urinalysis and the other was a hair analysis. Almost all were licensed commercial drivers. Ninety-four percent of the drivers tested free of drugs. Thousands failed one or both tests. The U.S. Department of Transportation only recognizes urinalysis. Most truck companies also use urinalysis as their main testing procedure. These tests were found to be notoriously inaccurate.

NHTSA releases personal injury stats of pedestrians and cyclists

For pedestrians and bicyclists in Missouri, the roads can be a treacherous place. The number of motor vehicles on the road is always a worry, but with people driving while distracted, driving under the influence, being drowsy behind the wheel and committing other dangerous acts, everyone is at risk. This is especially true of people who are walking or are riding a bicycle. Statistics bear out just how much danger these people are in. After an auto accident with a rider or a pedestrian, the aftermath can be costly in myriad ways. Having legal advice to consider a lawsuit is key.

In newly-released statistical analysis, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration says that there was an overall reduction in road fatalities to 36,750. That is a one percent drop from 2017. It is not clear why there was the reduction, but the substantial rise in 2017 was due to a rise in fatalities of people who were pedestrians, were riding a bicycle or were on a motorcycle. By 2018, the NHTSA found that there was a projected increase of 4 percent in pedestrian fatalities and 10 percent in bicyclists. In 2017, pedestrian fatalities were 16 percent of all deaths. That was 12 percent in 2009.

Motor vehicle accidents spike in the summer in Missouri

Most Missourians look forward to the summer when the weather will be warm, there will be time for leisure activities and it is easier to relax. Still, the inherent risks when out on the road are magnified during the time from Memorial Day to Labor Day, as there are more people on the road in general. Specifically, there are more teens who are not as experienced or vigilant when driving. These are known as the "100 Deadliest Days of Summer" and it is a time where accidents are known to spike. Those who have had an auto accident and suffered the consequences must be cognizant of their rights to seek compensation.

According to the Missouri Department of Transportation, there were 307 deaths on the roads in those 100 days in 2018. The DOT and the Missouri Coalition for Roadway Safety are encouraging drivers in the state to be safer this summer. Because there is so much to do during these months, people tend to think about things other than the road. With more vehicles on the road, this increases the chance of a crash with injuries and death. Another concern is that there are more bicyclists and pedestrians. The combination of more vehicles, distractions and more people can raise the number of injuries and deaths.

Ignored recalls could cause a ride sharing auto accident

Missourians who want to avoid driving will often use public transportation or catch a ride with a friend or colleague. The abundance of ride sharing services like Uber and Lyft has provided a more convenient option to get from one place to the other without needing to think about the costs and hazards associated with driving oneself. Despite the potential benefits, there are risks. One that is becoming known is the number of these vehicles that are on the road despite being subject to recalls. For those who were in a crash and suffered personal injury or lost a loved one in a ride sharing accident, this is a key factor when considering a legal filing for compensation.

According to Consumer Reports, one in six vehicles driven for Uber and Lyft in Seattle and New York were subject to recalls that had not been addressed. This issue was not limited to the ride sharing vehicles. Taxis and car service vehicles also had outstanding recalls in many cases. Because of the failure to bring the vehicles in for the necessary repairs, passengers are unwittingly placing themselves at risk. Air bags might not work correctly, the engines could be subject to failure and car fires are possible.

Injured police officer files lawsuit after auto accident

Missouri law enforcement officers are accustomed to helping others after there has been an auto accident. However, since officers must be on the road and go out and about just like anyone else, they too can be involved in accidents that cause injuries and fatalities. Some of the accidents happen in unusual circumstances. Law enforcement officers can face the same challenges as anyone else after a car accident. That includes medical costs, long-term injuries and problems getting back to work. Filing a lawsuit is an alternative for anyone who needs compensation after a crash.

A law enforcement officer in the suburbs was injured when a vehicle crashed into the restaurant he was in. He has filed a lawsuit seeking compensation. According to the officer, 38, he was off duty at the time of the accident. The driver of the vehicle, a 26-year-old male, is alleged to have been driving under the influence when he crashed into the establishment hitting the officer. The driver fled, but was later caught. The officer says that the establishment had served the driver too much alcohol prior to him getting into his vehicle and having the accident. The officer also says that his injuries are going to cost him his jobs. The driver, the bar owner and his insurer are all named in the filing.

Tips for avoiding slip-and-fall accidents in the summer

Summertime is almost here. As you prepare to enjoy the warm weather, it is important to prioritize your safety regarding slip-and-fall accidents. It is easy to assume slip-and-fall injuries occur mostly in the winter, but there are plenty of hazards that can put you at risk in the summer months. 

Slipping and falling can result in a wide range of injuries, including traumatic brain injuries, spinal cord damage, hip injuries and broken bones. Here are some guidelines for avoiding falls during the summer season. 

Legal help is key after rear-end car accident injuries

Any auto accident in Missouri brings about the possibility that there will be injuries and fatalities. One type of accident that is exceedingly dangerous is a rear-end auto accident. Because drivers and passengers who are rear-ended do not see it coming, they do not get the opportunity to brace themselves for the impact. Being hit from behind can cause spinal cord injuries, neck injuries and head injuries. These can have a long-term impact on a person's life and even lead to a fatality. After a rear-end crash, it is imperative to understand the potential consequences and discuss a legal filing with a qualified attorney.

Rear-end auto accidents can happen for a variety of reasons. Perhaps the driver was going too fast. The weather conditions could have been treacherous and the vehicle did not stop before hitting the car in front of it. The driver could have been texting and driving or distracted in another way and hit the back of the vehicle ahead of it before realizing what happened. While a rear-end crash has a relatively low frequency for fatalities, that does not mean the injuries are not concerning. In many instances, the people in the vehicle that was rear-ended do not realize how seriously they were injured before a week or more has passed. Getting medical attention and legal help is critical even if the injuries are not obvious.

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The Johnson Law Firm, LLC

220 Salt Lick Road
Saint Peters, MO 63376

Toll Free: 877-244-1187
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