Why Planes Crash

Feb 21

Aviation accidents happen less often compared to car accidents, but when they do, you always see them on the news. Most of the time, plane accidents result into serious injuries and even death. According to the website of the aviation accident lawyers of Habush Habush & Rottier S.C. ®, you have legal options you can pursue in case you or a loved one has been injured in an aviation accident.

Pilot Error
One of the most common causes of plane crashes is pilot error. Airplanes are extremely complicated machines, so there are almost unlimited opportunities for the pilot to commit a mistake. Pilots can misread equipment, underestimate weather conditions, and fail to recognize mechanical defects and malfunctions.

But getting rid of pilots altogether is not ideal, as there are complications where human intelligence and experience is still better compared to computer analytics. In a way, pilots are still the last lines of defense against crashing.

Airplane Defect
Airplane defects can occur because of many reasons, such as the inherent flaw in the plane’s design, external factors such as weather conditions, and poor maintenance. There are some instances where the pilot can fix the problem or adjust to ensure the safety of everybody on board. But there are also instances where the defect is so great that the pilot will not be able to do anything significant against it.

Weather Condition
Different weather conditions pose different kinds of threats to airplanes. There are conditions that may damage the plane’s features, such as lightning strikes. There are conditions that may compromise the safe travel of the plane, like how thick fogs can affect visibility, and how rain water, snow, and ice can affect take-off and landing procedures because of runway issues.

The advancement of technology has helped the aviation community to determine weather conditions in advance, but still, many plane crashes today occur because of bad weather.

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What Are The Common Causes Truck Driver Errors?

Oct 08

When truck accidents happen, the first one to be blamed is the truck driver. Although in some instances, they are not entirely to be deemed at fault, most accidents are the result of driver error. The website of Russo, Russo & Slania, PC reveals that truck accidents can have a much greater impact compared to car accidents. This is attributed to their enormous size and weight. There are different factors that can cause truck accidents.

In a recent study made by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), driver error is ten times more likely to contribute to trucking accidents than other factors such as road conditions, weather, and vehicle performance. Let us take a look at some of the driver errors that cause trucking accidents:

Driver Fatigue

Driving for extended hours can cause fatigue in the driver making them inattentive and fall asleep. As a result, they misjudge gaps, ignore signs of possible danger, and unable to react to a situation. This is a preventable error if the employer of the driver would only adhere to the rules on working hours by the driver set forth by the Federal government.

Drug Use

Unless prescribed by a licensed physician, a truck driver is not allowed to use any controlled substances. Again by adhering to safety guidelines, accidents due to drug use may be prevented. Trucking companies must make sure that their drivers are properly tested for alcohol and drug use when applying as a driver.

Not Being Able To See The Blind Spots

Trucks have bigger blind spots compared to other vehicles. To avoid these kinds of driver error, they must be trained to be aware of their blind spots to avoid colliding with smaller vehicles. Studies show that truck accidents are 60% more likely to happen when vehicles are in a no-zone.

The number of truck accidents can decrease by minimizing driver error. Employers have the duty to provide their drivers with proper training and truck drivers are required to oblige.

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Car Liability Insurance Coverage: It’s Actually for Your Own Protection

Jun 29

From 2008 to 2015 the average annual rate of fatal car accidents in the U.S. was 33,000 – this is 11,000 less than the average annual rate from 1981 to 2007. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), other governmental organizations and all those directly concerned about traffic safety are obviously working hard in implementing road safety rules. Besides the passing of new laws that will increase road safety, car manufacturers also do their part by improving car design and equipping new vehicles with modern safety devices that will make cars safer than ever before.

Having 33,000 deaths every year, however, is still alarming, especially when more than 90% of car crashes are due to driver error. This simply means that these accidents and deaths can be prevented if only drivers would act responsibly while behind the wheel and not compromise the safety of other people on the road.

Bad road behavior is not the only fault man has, though. Many of those who cause accidents are also guilty of failing to paying compensation to their victims. Thus, besides causing their victims pain and suffering, victims are also made to suffer financially due to the cost of medical treatment and lost wages.

In order to help assure accident victims of the compensation they have a legal right to claim, a law was passed which would require drivers to carry auto liability insurance. This law was passed in 1925, with Massachusetts and Connecticut being the first states to adopt it. Today, this law is known as the Financial Responsibility law and its purposeis to make sure that drivers at fault in accidents have the financial capability to compensate their victims for the damages and losses these are made to suffer.

The Financial Responsibility law requires that drivers carry auto liability insurance. Thus, a driver, whether of a car, a truck or a motorcycle, will need to show proof that he or she carries one whenever he or she renews his or her license, registers his or her vehicle, gets pulled over by a police officer or gets involved in an accident.

The type of insurance coverage a driver needs to carry depends on the type or liability system recognized in the state where he or she resides. In 38 states, the recognized insurance coverage is the tort or fault system, while in 12 others, the “no-fault” coverage is what is required. Under the tort or fault system, compensation is paid to the victim by the insurance provider of the driver at fault in an accident; under the “no-fault” system, however, drivers involved in an accident are compensated by their respective insurance providers regardless of who is at fault in the accident.

Fault or “no-fault” system, one common thing about insurance policies is that these are needlessly expensive. Often, drivers are made to pay much more than what they really should. Independent car insurance firms, like Insure on the Spot, however, are working to change the image of the insurance world – from too costly to budget friendly and without shielding from clients the best deals available. The best way to find the type of coverage that one needs is by going online and visit the website of these independent car insurance firms. These firms offer clients insurance quotes, some offer a dozen quotes, which can be compared to help them find what will match really need and budget.

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Distracted Drivers: Threats on the Road

Feb 12

Even before the 1900s, accidents involving automobiles were already happening; some of these accidents caused damage to the vehicle, some resulted to driver and passenger injuries, and a few resulted to the horrible death of certain individuals.

As early as 1925, state authorities already saw that cars are bound to crash and cause damages to properties and injuries on people. It was for this reason why car liability insurance became a mandate – so that at-fault drivers will not default on paying victims the compensation they have a legal right to seek.

Majority of car accidents, however, are mere results of human negligence or recklessness; of bad road behavior or failure to perform one’s duty in making sure that roads and highways do not pose dangers to motorists or that cars are not defectively designed and do not contain defective parts.

Though car crashes are totally preventable, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) is alarmed that more than 30,000 still die every year because of these. And while traffic authorities have increased their vigilance against drivers who speed, who drive recklessly, or even when intoxicated, another group of threats on the road is slowly increasing, most of whom are made up of teens and young adults – distracted drivers.

Distracted driving happens when a driver engages in an activity that will take his or her focus from the task of driving. This distracting activity may be carried out by the driver himself/herself or by someone else inside the car with the driver or someone outside the car. Due to distractions, it is, therefore, easy for drivers to fail to anticipate and react to possible road hazards. Currently, the use of cell phone while driving is the worst and most dangerous kind of distraction for drivers. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), every year thousands of car crashes, which injure 1,153 individuals and kill at least 9 others, occur due to the use of cell phone, whether texting or talking with someone. The use of cell phone, however, is not the only form of distraction that drivers get engaged in. There are so many others which have become so normal that drivers no longer realize these as distractions; their effects, however, are often tragic.

According the website of Williams Kherkher,  some of the most common forms of driving distractions, which so many drivers are guilty of, include: eating and drinking; adjusting a GPS device, compact disc player or car radio; using a laptop; reading a map for directions: talking or arguing with a car passenger (the more passengers there are in a car, the greater the distraction); reaching for an object (especially from the back seat); playing with or being distracted by a child; getting distracted by a pet or an insect; grooming; lighting a cigarette; smoking; and getting lost in thought.

Victims of car accidents may have grounds to pursue legal action against the party responsible for their injuries. It is not impossible for car accidents to cause severe injuries that can result to financial losses, pain and suffering for victims. It is for these losses and sufferings that victims have the right to seek compensation.

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Advanced Crash-avoidance Features do not Lessen Drivers’ Duty to Focus Fully on the Road

Nov 22

Records from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and Fatality Analysis Reporting System (FARS) of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) show that 90% of all road crashes, which go beyond five million every year, is due to bad road behavior, such as driving while intoxicated, speeding, driving recklessly, ignoring traffic signs and signals, making improper lane changes, not focusing on the road, and either texting or talking with someone over the phone.

Using a cell phone, while driving, is now the worst form of driving distraction in the US. In 2012, distractions while behind the wheel resulted to 3,328 fatal crashes and 421,000 injuries, an increase of 9% from the 387,000 figure in 2011 and, while all other 2013 road accident data from the NHTSA showed declines in death and injuries (these include records on the different types of vehicle crashes and the causes of these crashes, and injuries involving pedestrians, motorcyclists and bicyclists), distraction-affected crashes resulting to injuries remained to increase.

As defined by CDC, driving distraction is any activity that takes away a driver’s attention on driving. The real scary thing about this is that anyone is prone to distractions, including drivers who are always concerned about safety. There is a very long list of actions that can distract a driver, so many of these are too simple that people usually never realize the risk of accident they present. Distractions include conversing with a passenger, eating, looking at a map, adjusting a GPS or the car radio, turning the radio’s volume to full blast, fixing a tie, reaching for something from the backseat, playing with a child, putting on makeup, driving angry, and so forth.

Professional drivers and authorities list down three major types of driving distractions, namely:

  • Visual, which involves taking one’s eyes off the road;
  • Manual, which is taking the hands off the wheel; and
  • Cognitive, a case wherein a driver’s mind wanders off

Driving requires undivided attention on the road. This is to enable a driver to veer away from anything that may cause an accident without losing control of the vehicle. Recently, various advanced crash-avoidance features have been installed in cars which hope to prevent or avoid accidents, or help reduce the severity of an impact. Some of these features are improved seat belts and air bags, the All-wheel drive, which maximizes traction by distributing power to both front and rear wheels, the Electronic Stability Control, which helps drivers maintain control of their vehicles even during extreme steering maneuvers, the Automatic braking, which allows a car to brake automatically to prevent a crash or lessen its impact, and Reverse backup sensors, which automatically beeps if a driver is about to hit something while backing up.

Despite these advanced safety features, a San Antonio personal injury attorney would mention that auto accidents remain a top cause of serious injuries and wrongful death in the US, primarily because of distracted driving, which is an act of negligence and which makes an erring driver totally responsible for the pain, suffering, and losses that victims sustain in an accident.

This suffering, which the Cazayoux Ewing Law Firm explains in an article in its website, does not only include the physical and emotional pain experienced by victims, but the growing financial burden resulting from medical costs and other damages as well.

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