A story reported by the San Diego Union Tribune on August 28th tells the scary details of an accident where a truck driver leapt from his vehicle just moments before being hit by an Amtrak train. According to the truck driver, the woman in the vehicle ahead of him did not move forward when the light at the intersection turned green, giving him no room to move his car off the tracks. When he realized that the train was barreling down the tracks towards him, he fled from the car just in time to avoid being hit.
Trains frequently move at high speeds, even when passing through areas with a residential area. Being hit by a train could lead to catastrophic injuries. There are many reasons that can cause a train accident, such as inattention of the driver, failure of the crossing gear to properly warn people of the oncoming train, a problem with the train being unable to stop, or a driver being trapped on the railroad tracks. This is why it is important to exercise extra caution anytime you are near a stop with train crossing gear.
If you are ever trapped on the train tracks and it appears that a train is approaching, do not try to move the vehicle if you have already attempted this. A train accident can happen very quickly and could lead to seriously bodily injury for you and your passengers. Exit the vehicle as quickly as possible and move out of the line of the train’s travel. Although it is likely that your car could sustain major property damage, it is not worth putting your life in danger to try and stay with the vehicle. Trains are often moving even faster than they appear from a distance, so you need to make a quick judgment call to get off the tracks and out of the danger zone as quickly as possible. Knowing when to abandon your vehicle could just save your life and prevent the serious injuries often linked to train accidents.
According to a story covered by the San Diego Union Tribune on August 24th, police are looking into the possibility that the victim ran a red light before colliding with a vehicle in the intersection. The man died at the scene of the accident.
Accidents can be deadly for motorcycle riders, who do not have the same protections of other vehicles, like airbags. A cyclist can easily be thrown from the bike and into oncoming traffic. In accidents like this, cyclists are likely to sustain serious injuries at best, even with protective gear like a helmet. A cyclist can easily be hit by a bigger vehicle moving at a typical speed through an intersection, but the cyclist is likely to sustain injuries much more severe than someone inside a vehicle.
Unfortunately, red light accidents are all too common and they are very likely to leave individuals involved in the crash with severe injuries or even fatal wounds. According to the Federal Highway Administration, you are more likely to be killed during an accident caused by someone running a red light than any other type of crash. Running red lights is also the most common cause for urban crashes across the United States, with the behavior happening every 20 minutes in urban intersections around the country.
The running of red lights often leads to injuries sustained by others in the accident vicinity. Half of the people killed in accidents caused by someone running a red light were not the people running the red light in the accident. The sad news is that the injuries and fatalities associated with these red light running accidents are completely preventable. Pay attention when you’re driving, especially as you approach intersections. Paying extra attention could help keep you out of a major collision.
Teens often get the brunt of the blame in terms of distracted driving, but they are not the only ones getting tempted to answer that text behind the wheel. Since many states already have distracted driving laws in place or are at least contemplating restrictions, research is looking into the prevalence and danger of these habits.
It turns out that middle aged drivers are at risk of using their cell phones in the car, too. Older drivers felt more pressured to answer work calls while in the car, and this same group of drivers also admitted to taking calls with children in the vehicle.
According to the National Safety Council, over one quarter of car accidents are caused by cell phone use. The cognitive focus required to keep an eye on the road while thinking about a phone call can prove to be too much, putting a driver at risk of causing or being involved in an accident.
Many past research studies have looked directly at teenage drivers, but the project that produced these results came from the University of California, San Diego. Researchers were explicitly interested in the cell phone habits of drivers between the ages of 30 and 64.
The study also found that 75 percent of participants regularly talk on their cell phone in hands free mode, and that ninety percent of them felt that they were still a capable driver while doing so. Fewer than 30 percent of respondents knew that talking, even on a hands-free phone, could still impair their driving and make them more likely to be injured in a crash.
To avoid losing your focus for even a moment while driving, save the texts and phone calls for when you get to your destination.
According to research from the National Safety Council, the fatal traffic accidents from the first six months of 2015 are very worrisome when it comes to statistics. In the first half of the year, estimated traffic deaths are 14 percent higher than this same period just one year earlier.
Deaths from traffic accidents are not the only troubling statistic, either. The same data indicate that serious injuries are also up by 30 percent. The costs associated with these fatal accidents are also climbing. The estimated bill for the first six months of the year for property damage, injuries, and deaths is $152 billion. That’s a spike of nearly 25 percent from 2014.
Although these numbers are alarming and indicate serious risks associated with driving together, there are safety tips you can implement to help reduce your chances of an accident. Here are some tips you should use every time you get behind the wheel or in a passenger seat in any vehicle:
• Make sure everyone inside the vehicle has put on their seat belt for the entirety of the ride
• Take regular breaks in a long driving route to rejuvenate your focus
• Never get on the road for a trip with a severe lack of sleep
• Avoid talking on a cell phone behind the wheel, even if the device is hands-free
• Go over safety tips for driving with any teen drivers. This subsection of the population faces a high risk of getting hurt in an accident due to a variety of factors. The more you can reward good behavior and highlight the danger of behaving irresponsibly, the less likely your teen is to become a victim
• Never drive when you are under the influence of alcohol and always stop friends who attempt to drive while under the influence
Taking safety seriously every day could help prevent you or a loved one from being hurt in a preventable accident. While you cannot ensure that everyone on the road takes safety as seriously as you do, you can help to make the roads a less dangerous place by following these safety tips.
According to a story from the San Diego Union Tribune (August 26th, 2015), a car crash in the Bay area that led to the death of two passengers has led to DUI charges in addition to manslaughter. The prosecution alleges that traces of several different substances were found in the driver’s system post-accident. Sadly, far too many of these cases happen across California and the country on a daily basis.
When someone gets behind the wheel of the car under the influence of alcohol, dangerous accidents can occur. Alcohol can lead to driver impairment, but this becomes even more dangerous and deadly when other substances, like drugs, are found in the system.
Someone driving a vehicle under the influence of drugs may exhibit erratic behavior on the road like speeding, changing lanes without signaling, or running through red lights or stop signs. A momentary lapse in judgment could mean disfiguring injuries or death for passengers, pedestrians, or other drivers on the road.
If you believe that you are driving behind a vehicle where someone is exhibiting problems focusing or controlling the car, try to move out of the danger zone of the vehicle. Pass the vehicle safely, allow more distance between your car and the other vehicle, or pull off the road and wait a few moments to contact the authorities.
If you have already been injured in an accident with someone who appears to be under the influence of drugs, you may be entitled to compensation for your injuries. Recovering from a horrific accident is never easy, but fighting for compensation might give you the financial pathway to focus on recovery and begin putting your life back together. If you have been hurt by someone under the influence, you have rights. Consider contacting a San Diego car accident attorney today.