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Burlington Personal Injury Law Blog

Drowsy driving a major issue after daylight saving time

Drivers need to sleep for at least seven hours each night to be safe on the road. The AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety reports that drivers who get one or two fewer hours of sleep within a 24-hour period almost double their risk of getting into an accident. For this reason, AAA has continually reminded people in New Jersey and across the US to readjust their sleep schedules when preparing to "spring forward" for daylight saving time.

The National Sleep Foundation considers drivers "unfit to operate a motor vehicle" if they have slept less than two hours in the past 24 hours. Even more dramatically, the AAA claims that drivers who sleep for less than five hours have a crash risk comparable to those of drunk drivers.

Safety concerns persist with driverless cars

Autonomous cars are being developed by automakers like Ford, GM, Tesla, Toyota and Volvo. Google started testing systems for driverless cars back in 2009, and Waymo is managing them in Arizona. All of this shows that self-driving cars are becoming more and more of a reality, yet New Jersey residents should know about the many safety concerns.

For example, Uber launched its autonomous car program in 2016 in California. The cars had drivers in them, but soon they were being pulled over for running red lights. Eventually, the state ordered Uber to end the program. Uber has a similar program in Arizona. That was where, back in March 2018, the first fatal crash involving a driverless car occurred. After that, the program was suspended indefinitely.

Tips for avoiding drunk drivers

There are many steps people in New Jersey can take to protect themselves and other individuals from drunk drivers. These include recognizing drunk drivers, reporting them, driving defensively and avoiding times and places when people are more likely to be driving drunk.

A person may identify a drunk driver who is drinking behind the wheel, but there are other indications that someone may be under the influence. These include weaving, driving too slowly, driving on the wrong side of the road, stopping abruptly, inappropriate signals and slow reactions. A person who notices these and other dangerous actions should note as many identifying elements of the vehicle as possible, including the color, make, model and license number. These details, along with the driver's location, should be reported to law enforcement as soon as possible. An individual should not make an effort to follow or stop a drunk driver.

These property conditions might cause an accident

With the winter weather in New Jersey still in full swing, the instances of accidents and injuries are going strong. Between icy sidewalks and general poor maintenance of public and private property, there are plenty of dangers for pedestrians. In many situations, the owner is at fault for the poor property conditions that caused a person to slip and fall.

Typically, the owner of a premises is responsible for its upkeep and maintenance in order to keep it safe. When a property owner fails to do this and someone becomes injured, it is often possible for the victim to pursue legal action. However, since most people do not want to end up with injuries due to an accident on someone else's property, here are a few dangerous conditions you should watch out for to avoid this.

4 travel tips for a safe drive

With the summer starting to register on people's radars now that the darkest days of winter have receded, New Jersey folks often can't wait for the snow to melt and to hang up our winter coats for the season. It's time to start talking about road trips and what you can do to stay safe.

As schools have spring breaks and summer vacations, there are going to be more people traveling than at other times of the year. This can create a risk of crashes, but only if you aren't prepared for this influx of traffic or the drive you have to complete.

Documenting a car accident on the scene

Accident victims in New Jersey may be upset or seriously injured after a car crash, and it can be difficult to consider all of the things to look out for immediately after a wreck. However, keeping some tips in mind can help to establish a record that can help people when they go to their insurance company. It can be important to document both property damage and injuries at the scene and after a car accident in order to protect accident victims later on.

Staying calm after a car crash can be difficult. However, by keeping their wits about them, people can help to ensure they have the evidence they will need later on. Of course, the first step after a crash is to make sure that everyone who requires emergency medical treatment receives it. This may mean calling 911 for both police and medical assistance. In some cases, it may be dangerous to leave the vehicles as they are, and they may need to be moved to the side before the police come. If this is true, it is important to try to photograph the scene before the cars are moved to preserve an accurate record.

Construction workers have dangerous jobs, suffer injuries

If you are a New Jersey construction worker, you likely understand all too well just how dangerous your job can be. Maybe you already have had to miss work while recuperating from a work-related injury or accident.

Even those uninjured workers often have their own hair-raising stories of near-misses, those almost-catastrophic incidents that could have got them severely injured — or worse. But for the uninitiated, read on for some facts about construction dangers.

Reasons for car accidents

There are a number of different reasons car accidents can occur in New Jersey. The police and the insurance claims adjusters have to identify the cause or causes of the crashes for various reasons. Law enforcement needs the information to determine who has to be given a ticket. The insurance company requires the information to identify the at-fault party, to whom the claims payment should be issued and the amount of the payment.

For single car insurance claims, the driver of a vehicle is considered to be responsible, even if the accident occurred as a result of the condition of the weather. Slick roads, heavy fog, strong winds and excessive rain can all be very troublesome for drivers.

Techniques that could reduce truck driver shoulder injuries

Truck drivers in New Jersey sometimes experience serious shoulder injuries if part of their duties involve the cranking of landing gears. Not all trucking-related injuries are entirely preventable, especially ones involving someone else's negligence or unsafe road or working conditions. However, a new study found that adjustments to certain techniques involved with the raising or lowering of trailers could help prevent shoulder injuries that sometimes keep drivers off the road and away from a regular paycheck.

In order to find ways to reduce the risk of drivers experiencing the types of injuries that could be serious enough to file a workers' compensation claim, researchers observed a dozen male truckers as they performed cranking operations. Specifically, they looked at several muscles that affect shoulder movement and each driver's scapular range of motion as they cranked. Researchers concluded that standing parallel to a trailer while cranking to raise it is a safer position for truckers because it reduces a shoulder's workload.

Preventing cold stress while working outside

People who work outside during the winter without the proper protection are at risk of getting cold stress. When the human body is unable to maintain the right temperatures, a variety of health problems can occur. These can include frostbite, hypothermia, dehydration, numbness and shivering. A variety of factors contribute to the risk of getting these conditions other than temperatures, including humidity, wind speed and contact with certain surfaces.

Some workers are at far more risk of developing cold stress than others. The most extreme risks are for those who work outdoors, like in farming or fishing, but indoor employees can also be affected. Buildings that use refrigeration like food processing plants and ice rinks can induce cold stress. The individuals most at risk for this condition include those who are physically unfit, ill, under the influence of drugs or working without the proper equipment.

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