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New Orleans Personal Injury Law Blog

The best way to keep kids safe in an accident

Louisiana law sets some specific legal requirements when it comes to the safety of children riding in motor vehicles. The Louisiana Highway Safety Commission states the law requires children ages six to 12 to use an appropriate seat belt or booster seat. Any child who weighs less than 60 pounds or is under six years old must use a car or booster seat chosen based upon the manufacturer’s specifications for weight and height.

The Commission also provides information to citizens to help ensure that children are placed in the proper seats and using the correct restraint systems based on size and age. In addition, proper installation and fit within the vehicle are also stressed by the Commission for the best protection of a child in an accident situation.

Concerning car accidents, distracted may be the new drunk

Car accidents have become more of a common occurrence over recent years. While this may be due in part to the increase in the amount of traffic of late, you will find that there are certain factors that are more prevalent amongst recent collisions. Distracted driving has turned into a significant issue, with many individuals choosing to divide their attention between the road and objects such as a cell phone.

You may have noticed drivers nearby who are not carefully watching the road. Distracted drivers often exhibit the same signs as drunk drivers, and can be every bit as dangerous.

Insurance coverage and rideshare accidents

Uber and other rideshare services are becoming rather popular in Louisiana and other areas. With the increased use of these services has come the risk of you being involved in an accident. Rideshare accidents are special because of how these services are set up. When we see these accidents at Bruno & Bruno, we feel it is important to explain the complexities involved.

Rideshares are basically when one individual provides another individual transportation. While the driver may work on behalf of a company, they are not an employee of that company. The company is only providing a platform to arrange the transportation. So, any issues arising from an accident are between you and your driver.

Seatbelts and school buses

It is a common question asked by parents and community members on a regular basis: Why do school buses not have seat belts? People do not have to ask that question in this state, though, because Louisiana is one of a very few states that actually has a law requiring school buses to have them. According to the Louisiana State Legislature, occupant restraint systems on buses used to transport school children have been required since 2004.

While this provides some peace of mind, parents should be aware that even without seat belts, these are one of the safest vehicles on the road. According to the American School Bus Council, school buses are designed to provide safety and security for riders who are sitting in a proper position. The high seat backs and overall design of a bus are all part of the safety features that help keep kids from getting injured in an accident. Buses are higher profile than passenger vehicles, which affects crash impacts. They also have reinforced shells that are meant to prevent crushing of the exterior during a crash.

How does a medical device recall work?

Implantable medical devices can provide great benefits for a patient and, in many cases, can improve serious conditions, improve quality of life and allow an individual to live without pain. Occasionally, however, companies and doctors learn that these devices are ineffective or even dangerous, requiring a recall of the medical device.

If you received notice that your medical device is under recall, do you know what to expect? If you suffered injuries, additional medical problems or other complications as the result of problems with an implanted device, you may have grounds for a civil claim. Louisiana patients have the right to know of any risks or possible complications that may accompany the implantation of a medical device.

Walk this way: Protect your interests after a pedestrian accident

In New Orleans, walking is a way of life. People walk to work, dinner, public events and more, but in such a pedestrian-friendly city, the risk of a pedestrian-vehicle accident is high. If you have been hurt in an accident while traveling by foot in New Orleans, you need to know how to protect your interests and what you need to do in order to obtain a full recovery.

How can underage drunk driving crashes be prevented?

Whether you are a teen who is concerned about riding in a vehicle with someone who is under the influence of alcohol or are a parent who is worried about your child, it is essential to take a look at different ways that underage drunk driving accidents can be avoided. In New Orleans, and communities all over Louisiana, underage DUI is a serious problem for some young drivers and others on the road. From lost lives and permanent injuries to license suspension, drunk driving can upend life in many ways.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that drivers between the ages of 16 and 20 years old with a blood alcohol content level of 0.08 face a 17-fold increased risk of dying in a DUI accident, compared to those with no alcohol in their system. As a result, parents and young drivers should take preventative measures. For teenagers, it is crucial to stay off the road if they have consumed alcohol. However, it is also important for them to avoid getting in a car with another driver who has been drinking underage. At times, this may be difficult for teens due to a number of reasons, such as peer pressure.

Protecting teen drivers—and everyone on the road around them

Before teenagers get behind the wheel, parents have a responsibility to prepare them for the risks they may face on the roads in Louisiana. Not only do these dangers involve other drivers and hazardous road conditions, they also include issues that teens themselves may create through carelessness, inexperience or poor choices.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, there are a number of factors that lead to the injuries and deaths of thousands of teens in motor vehicle crashes each year. Unlike adult drivers, teens typically have not yet learned how to react instinctively in many of the common traffic situations, and instead make judgment errors that cause a collision. They may also fail to recognize the situations in the first place.

Your Uber driver may not have enough insurance

There are plenty of circumstances in New Orleans and Covington where you may be safer if you download a ride-share app and arrange for someone else to drive you rather than getting behind the wheel yourself. The companies that offer these services are responsible for ensuring that you are safe, and that includes adequate insurance coverage. The attorneys at Bruno & Bruno have worked with many car accident victims whose ongoing medical expenses have exceeded coverage limits.

According to NerdWallet, Uber drivers should never assume that their personal insurance policy picks up where the company’s coverage leaves off. For one thing, if the driver who gives you a ride has never informed the insurance company that the vehicle is being used for a ride-sharing company, the personal policy could be at risk of cancellation. Even if it is not, the coverage is not likely to include an accident that occurs while you are in the vehicle.

Cruising for a Bruising: legal help for injured ship passengers

Tourism is one of the key economic engines driving the economy of Louisiana. Because of the state's access to the Gulf of Mexico, the Mississippi River and other bodies of water, many tourists flock to the state to embark on cruises along the river, Lake Pontchartrain or into the Gulf and beyond.

Although passengers on a cruise are looking to relax and unwind, there always remains an element of risk on a ship. The possibility of becoming ill or being injured on a ship cannot be ignored. Should misfortune befall you on a cruise, it can be difficult to determine what the next steps should be.

Passengers on a paid marine excursion are subject to Maritime or Admiralty law, just the same as the captain and crew. Any legal claims a passenger makes for injury, illness or other mishap against a cruise operator are subject to Maritime law.