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New Orleans Personal Injury Law Blog

Teens and night driving

Teenage drivers pose a risk to other vehicle operators in Louisiana due to numerous factors such as cellphone usage, interacting with friends in the car and other distracting behaviors. However, as the days become shorter, another risk to be aware of is nighttime driving. Driving in the dark is challenging for everyone, but it is particularly difficult for younger drivers.

According to the National Safety Council, driving at night increases the risk of being in a fatal crash for teenage drivers. The most dangerous time period is between 6 PM and midnight, and some of this time frame is when teens are driving home after extracurricular activities, athletic games, work and school-related events. Due to the increased risk, experts encourage parents to spend more time accompanying teenage drivers during these hours and teaching night driving skills.

Practicing caution can reduce accidents in construction zones

When people are commuting in Louisiana and come across a construction zone they may be frustrated to have to slow to a snail's pace, especially if they are in a hurry to get somewhere. However, speeding through construction zones and ignoring special instructions posted on road signs can be incredibly dangerous and cause unnecessary accidents. 

One way that people can plan ahead for delays in their commute due to construction is to check local news channels or even map their route on a mapping app to locate delays. Often, the news will share major construction projects that could affect the regular commute for motorists and apps will usually signify why a delay is occurring. When people factor in enough time to travel to their destination despite slowed traffic from construction, they can remain patient and level-headed when they encounter a project area. 

Amazon's impressive delivery speed may create safety hazard

As the world becomes increasingly focused on ways to get things done faster, more efficiently and with less physical output from consumers, innovative ways of transporting necessities are becoming commonplace. In Louisiana, one may notice an increase in contracted delivery drivers who are tasked with getting packages to the people that ordered them in record time. While a worthwhile goal, one has to wonder if the accomplishment of that objective is actually coming at a cost. 

A notable retail giant in the online platform is Amazon who has set itself apart from many of its competitors with the record speeds with which they are able to ship and deliver the product to the people who have ordered from them. Their method for taking the lead in that area has been to hire a series of contracted drivers who are responsible for seeing that packages are delivered as quickly as possible. 

The unknown dangers of eating while driving

Unbeknownst to you (and likely many others in New Orleans) is that every time you take to the road, you may be surrounded by drivers engaged in a potentially dangerous activity. This activity may be just as likely to lead to a car accident as drunk driving or using a cellphone while behind the wheel, as countless people engage in it without realizing the risks they are creating. We are talking about eating while driving, and you (just as many of those that our team here at Bruno & Bruno has worked with in past have been) may be surprised at just how likely it is to have played a factor in your accident. 

Like most, you may view eating as being such a natural action that you would not even classify it as a distraction. Yet take a moment to think about the actions that go into eating. You have to grasp whatever it is that you are eating, you must look at what you are eating as you direct it towards your mouth, and finally, you have to pay at least some attention to what you are doing in order to avoid spills. When doing this while behind the wheel, one's effort and attention (although likely inadvertently) is pulled away from the road ahead. 

Keeping teen drivers safe

Many parents may feel a mix of anxiety and excitement when their teens get old enough to learn how to drive. While getting a driver's license is an exciting sign of growing independence, it may also introduce new risks into a teen's life. While car accidents involving teens are an unfortunate occurrence on Louisiana roads, there are some important things parents may do to help their teen drivers stay safe behind the wheel.

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, car crashes are responsible for more teen deaths than any other cause. In 2017, there were 3,255 fatal accidents involving teen drivers.  Some of the most common reasons teen drivers get into accidents include immaturity, lack of experience, speeding and distracted driving. Parents may help combat some of these risks by demonstrating safe driving practices themselves, such as obeying speed limits and refusing to use cell phones while driving. It is also essential for parents to spend adequate time teaching teens to drive so they feel confident after they get their licenses.

Fetal distress: Signs your Louisiana obsterician should recognize

Having a baby is often an exciting time in a woman's life. If this is your first child, you are likely a bit anxious or nervous as well as excited. Even if you've already given birth one or more times in the past, you no doubt understand that every pregnancy is different and problems can arise at any time. This is one of many reasons it's so important to attend prenatal visits on time.

Whether you are working with a licensed obstetrician or midwife during pregnancy, as a trained medical team member, he or she should know how to recognize possible signs of fetal distress. Appropriate action depends on various factors and events that happen to be unfolding in a particular set of circumstances. If a medical team member is negligent, you or your infant may suffer serious, even life-threatening injuries.

Staying safe when using a ride-sharing service

Many residents of Louisiana enjoy the convenience of ride-sharing services, such as Uber or Lyft. These companies allow riders to quickly and easily get places without having to worry about finding parking. While there are potential risks to using a ride-sharing service, there are several simple steps riders may follow to drastically reduce those issues.

Ride-sharing services are becoming more popular in most areas of the country. According to data from a 2018 Pew Research Center survey, over one-third of Americans indicated that they had used ride-sharing services. This number represents a significant increase in the three years since the 2015 survey, where only 15% of people stated they had used such a service.

Do drivers always have to yield to pedestrians?

When you are driving in Louisiana, you may encounter pedestrians often, especially when you are in cities or residential areas. Most busy intersections in cities have traffic signals and signs that indicate when you need to stop your vehicle to yield to a pedestrian. However, it is not always as clear in residential neighborhoods or on rural roads. You may have a hard time determining who has the right-of-way when there are no active traffic signals.

The Louisiana State Legislature provides details on the sections of the traffic code that apply to interactions between drivers and pedestrians. According to this governing body, you must always give the right-of-way to a pedestrian who is in a crosswalk in places where there is no functioning traffic signal. This statute includes crosswalks that are in your path on the road where you are driving as well as those on a road you want to turn onto.

When should a child move to a front-facing car seat?

Figuring out how to keep your children safe in the car may seem overwhelming, especially with all the different types of car seats. If you want to know when you should switch your child from a rear-facing car seat to a front-facing seat, you may have to consult both the manufacturer's instructions and local regulations. In Louisiana, there is a recent law that includes new rules for when children may use different types of car seats.

According to a KSLA News report, there are updated rules for car seats in the Louisiana Child Passenger Safety Law. Under the new requirements, you must keep your child in a rear-facing car seat until he or she is two years old. Additionally, you may not begin using a front-facing car seat until your child has outgrown the rear-facing seat's height or weight restrictions.

The sorry state of America’s bus systems

Every motor vehicle accident in Louisiana is a bad one. Even if it is just a minor scrape or a fender bender, it creates an inconvenience for the parties involved and may decrease the value of the car. Of all the many accidents drivers fear, however, commercial vehicle accidents stand at the top of the list.

This is because commercial vehicles are usually larger, such as trucks and buses. This makes it easier for them to cause more damage. They also travel longer distances, which can lead to bored or sleepy drivers at the wheel.