When a Distracted Driver Wrecks Your Car & Injures You

Despite the known dangers of distracted driving, cell phone use while driving is still prevalant and causes billions of dollars of damage every yearApril was designated Distracted Driving Awareness Month to bring attention to the dangers of distracted driving. This problem is not only a risk to the distracted driver and his or her passengers, but to everyone on the road. Motor vehicle crashes involving distracted drivers were responsible for 3,179 fatalities and 431,000 injuries in the United States during 2014. While you might not be able to control the actions of other drivers on the road, you can do something to take a stand against distracted driving according to our car wreck attorneys in Los Angeles.

Main Causes of Distracted Driving

Distracted driving occurs when a driver does anything that takes the driver’s attention away from driving. Most people associate cell phone use and texting as the leading distractions while driving. However, you should avoid other distractions, including:

  • Using a navigation system
  • Adjusting your radio, MP3 player or CD player
  • Watching a video
  • Reading
  • Putting on makeup
  • Grooming, including brushing teeth or shaving
  • Eat and drinking
  • Talking to passengers

No one is saying that you cannot eat, drink, or talk to others while you are driving. But you need to be aware that these activities can take your attention away from the road, even if it’s only for a brief moment.

Young drivers are most at risk for being involved in crashes caused by distracted driving. Many of those crashes were due to texting while driving. This is why it is important to speak to your teens about the dangers of distracted driving, especially texting while driving.

California Distracted Driving Laws

In California, there were 12 deadly crashes and 500 injuries attributed to distracted driving crashes in 2015. Effective January 1, 2017, California instituted a new law to crack down on distracted driving. Drivers are no longer allowed to use cell phones while driving unless they use a hands-free device or use voice-operated commands. Cell phones must be mounted to the dashboard or windshield if it used during driving. If you are caught violating this new law, you could be fined $20 for your first offense. A repeat offense will make you subject to a $50 fine.

When to Call Our Car Wreck Attorneys in Los Angeles

Despite all your efforts to avoid being a distracted driver, you might not be able to avoid being in a car wreck because of someone else being a distracted driver. If you are injured in a car wreck, your first step is to make sure that you and your passengers are safe and receive immediate medical attention.
The next step is to protect your rights by contacting the Los Angeles car wreck attorneys at Glen Lerner Injury Attorneys. Help is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Call 323-REAR END (323-732-7363) for a free consultation.

Vehicle Accidents in Los Angeles – What Should I Do If I Have One?

Sandra Duran, 42, was recently killed after her vehicle was struck by a drunk driver. Sandra leaves behind an 18-year-old son who somehow survived the accident. The drunk driver responsible for the accident is Estuardo Alvarado, 45. He ran a red light and smashed directly into Sandra’s vehicle about an hour after she had attended church with her sister.

Representatives from the LAPD state Alvarado hit a parked car while attempting to pass slower moving vehicles while zooming down Sepulveda Boulevard. Alvarado stopped for a moment then fled the scene of the accident at a high rate of speed. He slammed directly into Duran’s vehicle, causing her to die at the crash site before medical professionals could arrive to provide treatment.

Alvarado fled this second accident scene at Sepulveda and Plummer only to be nabbed by LAPD moments later. He received treatment at a hospital and remained in police custody thereafter. Alvarado faces a bevy of charges including vehicular manslaughter, murder and driving while intoxicated. He pleaded not guilty to each charge during his arraignment.

Duran’s son and his girlfriend were also in the vehicle at the time of the accident. They were treated for minor injuries.

If You Are in an Auto Accident, Don’t Panic

For those walking away from a serious auto accident like this, it can seem like they are in a living nightmare. Their injuries can render them temporarily immobile, mired in pain, emotionally distraught, and unable to think clearly.

Others involved in less severe vehicle accidents may still experience pain and suffering, but they may be more alert and able to move on their own.

If you are ever in an accident and able to do any of the following after a vehicle accident, do so. Your immediate action may help you win more compensation when you file an injury claim.

  1. Try not to panic;
  2. Request the other driver/party’s proof of insurance and license for identification purposes;
  3. Record additional information such as license plate number, vehicle make and model, phone number and address;
  4. Document the scene of the accident with your smartphone by taking pictures of your injuries, the damaged vehicle(s) and the crash scene at large;
  5. Call the police to document the accident and contact emergency personnel; and
  6. The next step is to contact a Los Angeles auto accident attorneys who will fiercely advocate on your behalf.

Contact Experienced Los Angeles Auto Accident Attorneys

We understand the aftermath of an auto accident is a difficult time. Our legal team is here to help you navigate the legal maze and obtain the justice and compensation you deserve.

If you or a loved one suffer even the slightest injury or vehicle damage as a result of your accident, the Los Angeles vehicle accident lawyers at Glen Lerner Injury Attorneys will provide legal assistance 24/7. Contact us today by calling 323-REAR END (323-732-7363) to schedule a free consultation.

Distracted Driving Awareness Month: Learn The Facts About Distracted Driving in Illinois

Despite the known dangers, the number of distracted driving accidents continues to grow each year. In 2015, almost 3,500 people were killed in car accidents caused by a driver engaging in distracted driving behaviors.

The National Safety Council has classified distracted driving as a national epidemic and has declared April Distracted Driving Awareness Month.

One of the most common – and deadliest – forms of distracted driving is the use of cell phones and other hand-held devices. Texting while driving is considered one of the most dangerous. When a person is reading or sending a text, their eyes are off the road for an average of five seconds.

That may not seem like a long time, but if you are driving at 55 mph, you will travel the length of a football field. Now imagine driving that distance with your eyes closed because that is what is essentially happening when you text and drive.

In Illinois, it is against the law to use a hand-held cell phone. Drivers are only allowed to use hands-free devices or phones with blue tooth technology, but only if they are 19 years of age or older.

However, keep in mind that studies have shown that even using hands-free technology can be a dangerous distraction while driving because it takes your attention away from the road.

And while much of the focus on distracted driving is pointed at cell phone use, distracted driving is any kind of activity that takes your attention away from driving.

This can include playing with the vehicle navigation, radio, or entertainment systems, talking to passengers in your vehicle, or eating and drinking. Anything that distracts you from keeping focused on the road is a potential distracted driving crash waiting to happen.

In order to help decrease your risk of being in an auto accident, consider practicing these safe driving habits:

  • Finish personal grooming at home, before you get in your vehicle;
  • Try to avoid eating while driving by having meals or snacks before you leave. If you do have to bring a snack with you, make sure it is not a messy one which could divert your attention;
  • Before putting your vehicle in drive, make all the adjustments with mirrors, seats, GPS system, etc.; and
  • Put all your electronics away so they will not be a distraction while you are driving. If you do have to make a phone call or text someone, pull over onto a safe area off the road and do it while your vehicle is parked.

Unfortunately, no matter how many safe driving behaviors we practice, there are many other drivers who fail to do the same. If you have been injured in a car accident caused by a distracted driver, contact a skilled Chicago personal injury attorney to discuss what your legal options are.

Distracted Driving Awareness Month: Learn Facts About Distracted Driving in Nevada

April is Distracted Driving Awareness month in Nevada and across the United States. According to statistics from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) there are eight people killed every day in accidents caused by distracted drivers and another 1,200 suffer serious injuries.

In the state of Nevada alone, there are 3,500 people injured each year in distracted driving crashes.

The National Safety Council (NSC) reports that there is a car accident every eight seconds in this country, and one out of every five accidents is caused by a distracted driver.

Despite the well-known dangers, many drivers – of all ages – continue to engage in distracted driving behaviors while behind the wheel of their vehicles.

One of the most dangerous forms of distracted driving is the use of a cell phone or other hand-held device. In Nevada, it is illegal for all drivers to use a hand-held phone or other device while driving.

The state has also made this a primary law, which means that law enforcement can pull you over and issue a violation if they see you using your device.

In addition to being illegal, cell phone use while driving is also very dangerous. If you text and drive, you are 23 more times likely to be in a car crash. Talking on the phone while driving quadruples your risk of being in an accident.

Even hands-free devices cause a dramatic increase in accident risk. When you are talking on a cell phone, almost 40 percent of the brain activity needed to concentrate on driving is now focused on the conversation instead of the road.

It is important to realize that it is not just cell phone use that causes to distracted driving accidents.

Other activities that many people engage in while driving include eating and drinking, using a GPS system, taking to passengers, fiddling with vehicle music or entertainment systems, grooming, reading, and taking selfies.

All drivers can make the pledge to drive distraction-free by practicing safe driving behaviors. Before you begin to drive, make sure to set your GPS, radio, seats, mirrors, etc. so that none of those items will need your attention when you are driving. Put your phone on silent and put it away, either in a purse or glove box. When you are behind the wheel, do not eat, apply makeup or other grooming, or reach across the seats to grab an item. Stay completely focused on the road and if you do need to use your device, pull off the road to a safe area to do so.

If you are injured in an accident caused by a distracted driver, contact an experienced Las Vegas car accident attorney to discuss what your legal options may be against the driver for your pain and loss.

How Long Will it Take to Settle My Car Accident Case in Illinois?

how long you can expect your auto accident claim to take and the steps an experienced Chicago car accident lawyer can take to help

If you have been injured in a car accident in Illinois, you’ll want to know how long it will take to settle your case.

Not only might your injuries cause substantial pain and suffering, but if you are left temporarily disabled and cannot go to work, the loss of income you may suffer as the victim of a car crash could cause you overwhelming financial burdens.

The time required to reach a resolution in a car accident claim depends on many factors.  Firstly, it is dependent on the medical treatment plan an accident victim uses to recover from the injuries sustained in the accident.

An attorney cannot negotiate the settlement of a claim until the accident victim completes medical treatment and recovers from their injuries sustained in the accident.  The longer the course of the treatment plan, the longer the process will take.  And getting the right treatment plan is critically important: an accident victim can only settle their claim once.

That means that the accident victim cannot come back after settlement and recover more money if she is still feeling pain or continues to suffer from accident related injuries.  Therefore, the medical treatment plan is one of the most important factors that determines how long it takes to resolve a claim.

A second major factor in the time it takes to settle a claim, is the conduct of the adverse insurance company in response to the claim.  The adverse insurance company will carefully review the medical treatment plan to determine if all the treatment was related to and required by the injuries sustained in the accident at issue.  A claimant’s prior medical history, including other accidents and injuries suffered near the time of the accident at issue, may complicate and delay that review.

The adverse insurance company will also carefully evaluate the cause of the accident and whether the claimant is at all responsible for the accident.  The more cars involved in the accident, the more complicated that evaluation can be and the longer it might take.

A third factor to consider in determining how long the settlement of a claim might take is the time it will take to gather all the facts of the case: the extent of the damage to the vehicles, the costs of repairs and the severity of the impact, the information contained in the police or traffic crash report and whether a moving violation was issued to either driver, witnesses to the accident and their statements, and the sobriety of the drivers involved. Investigating all the factual issues and gathering all the important evidence may take time.

With all these different issues to review, even those claims that seem simple can quickly become complicated.  Insurance companies have the experience and resources to dig up even the most unlikely defenses to any claim.

When the insurance company takes a position regarding either the medical treatment or the cause of the accident, and the claimant believes the insurance company is not correctly evaluating the claim, he can file a lawsuit under most circumstances.  But lawsuits take time and require costs and expenses, like filing fees.  If you have been injured in a car accident in Illinois, then it is critical that you contact an Illinois car accident attorney to advocate for you.

There is no crystal ball to predict how long your car accident claim will take to resolve, but the message here is that once you understand the complex factors involved in the process of settling your case — from injury to recovery to compensation — you can be certain that having a seasoned Illinois personal injury attorney representing you will help ensure that the insurance company does not take advantage of your situation and that you get all the compensation you deserve.