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Santa Clara County personal injury attorney car accident

In 2018, an estimated 400,000 people in the United States were injured and almost 3,000 were killed in car accidents involving distracted driving, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). Distracted driving is a serious problem nationwide and in California, and if you have been injured in an accident caused by a distracted driver, you need an attorney who understands the legal strategies that give you the best chance of obtaining the compensation you need and deserve.

Common Causes of Distracted Driving

Distracted driving refers to any situation in which a driver removes his or her attention from driving to focus on another task. One well-known cause of distracted driving is cell phone use, especially texting, which can remove a driver’s eyes from the road for five seconds or more. In California, texting while driving and any other handheld cell phone use is against the law. Other common distractions are not explicitly forbidden, but they can be dangerous, nonetheless. Some of the most frequent causes include:

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South Bay Area personal injury attorney construction site accident

In California, a wide variety of occupations may expose employees to injury risk throughout the course of their work. As such, the state requires employers to provide workers’ compensation benefits for employees who are injured on the job, whether those injuries were the fault of the employer, the employee, or a third party. However, as an employee, your eligibility for workers’ compensation benefits does not mean that you cannot also file a personal injury claim against a third party. In fact, in many severe workplace accident cases, it is necessary to pursue a liability lawsuit in order to receive full compensation for the extent of your damages.

When Is a Third-Party Personal Injury Lawsuit Possible?

You may have grounds to file a personal injury lawsuit if you suffered an injury during the course of your work, and that injury was caused by the negligence of someone other than you or your employer. A few examples of work-related injury situations that may involve third-party liability include:

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San Jose personal injury attorneysAccording to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), drivers between the ages of 16 and 19 years old are at a higher risk for a car accident than those in any other age group. In facts, teenage drivers are three times more likely per mile driven to be involved in a fatal accident that drivers over the age 20. Some teens, of course, are very conscientious drivers, but unfortunately, accidents still happen. A recent study suggests that that monitoring levels of a certain stress hormone may help predict how likely a teen is to be involved in an accident.

Testing Cortisol Levels

The study found that newly-licensed teenagers who produced lower levels of the stress hormone cortisol were more likely to be involved in an accident or near-accident. According to Dr. Dennis Durbin, co-scientific director of the Center for Injury Research and Prevention at the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, this may indicate that people who experience heightened emotions in stressful situations use those emotions to learn more quickly when behind the wheel. Dr. Durbin did not conduct the study, but he did co-write an editorial that was published along with the findings.

The study was conducted by a team of researchers at the University of Sherbrooke in Quebec and involved newly-licensed drivers from the state of Virginia. Each of the drivers was 16 years old and had received their probationary driver's licenses less than three weeks prior. Saliva samples were tested while the subjects were subjected to increased stress during a timed math test. The teens' vehicles were then fitted with technology to record accidents or near-accidents for the next 18 months. Those who had the highest levels of cortisol had the lowest crash or near-crash results.

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San Jose hit and run accident lawyerBeing in any type of car accident can be a terrifying ordeal, but being involved in a hit and run may be the worst type of accident to be involved in. When a driver causes a car crash and then intentionally leaves the scene of the accident without providing contact information, the victim may incorrectly assume there is nothing they can do to get compensation for their damages. However, there are several things hit and run victims can do to maximize their chances of getting reimbursement for their injuries and property damage.

Always Call the Police Immediately After a Hit and Run

It can be infuriating to be the victim of a hit and run accident. Understandably, some people feel tempted to chase after the person who hit them and sped away from the accident scene. However, doing this can make your situation much worse than it already is. You could cause another accident or exacerbate your injuries by attempting to catch the person who caused the crash. You could also face criminal charges if you break traffic laws in your pursuit of the other driver. Instead, call the police immediately after being involved in a hit and run. A police report chronicling the details of the accident is almost always needed to pursue a civil claim for a hit and run. Furthermore, a police report will likely make your auto claims process faster.

Collect Evidence and Speak with Witnesses

If you are not too injured to do so, make sure to gather as much information as you can about the circumstances of the accident. Take pictures or make note of the make, model, and color of car that hit you. Also speak with any witnesses to the accident and write down their contact information. These witnesses may be a valuable asset when it comes time to proving your claim.

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San Jose personal injury attorneyMany people consider Memorial Day to be the unofficial start of summer fun. You may have plans to take a boating trip, enjoy a backyard barbeque, or visit family this Memorial Day. Whatever your plans may be, make sure you are always taking steps to keep yourself and your family safe. Memorial Day is considered one of the riskiest days on which to operate a motor vehicle in the United States. The increase in the number of vehicles on the roads plus the common presence of alcohol at Memorial Day celebrations can be a deadly combination. Boating accidents are also common on Memorial Day for similar reasons.

Drunk Driving on Memorial Day

According to The National Safety Council, approximately 400 people may lose their lives in traffic accidents this Memorial Day weekend across the country. This estimate is based on the number of fatal accidents from previous Memorial Day weekends plus other data. Drunk driving is an especially concerning risk factor during this time because many people attend gatherings in which alcohol is served.

If you are planning on driving during the holiday period, make sure to take extra precautions to keep yourself and other motorists safe. Avoid drinking and driving, and always wear a seatbelt. Additionally, keep your eyes open for motorists who are making erratic lane changes, speeding, drifting between lanes, or otherwise driving dangerously as these motorists may be intoxicated.

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While this website provides general information, it does not constitute legal advice. The best way to get guidance on your specific legal issue is to contact a lawyer. To schedule a meeting with the attorney, please call at 408-293-7777 or complete the intake form below.

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John J. Garvey, III
10 Almaden Blvd, #1220
San Jose, CA 95113
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