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HMN Law Blog

Should I call the police if I get in a parking lot accident?

You are driving through a California parking lot when all of a sudden you are struck by another vehicle. In the immediate aftermath, you are not certain what to do. If you got into an accident while driving on the road, you would call the police to file a report. But a parking lot is a different story. There, you are on private property, not a public street. So should you call the police if you get into a parking lot accident? Actually, it is very wise to do so.

A piece in the U.S. News and World Report advises motorists to call the police following a parking lot accident. For one thing, calling in the police means you can file a formal police report with them. This is vital in the event you or the other motorist or anyone involved in the accident sustained an injury. If you don't have a police report filed, the other driver may come along later and sue you, and all you have is your word against the word of the other driver.

Safety-monitoring drones become possible hazards

Meant to catch safety violators in the act, railroad drones, like those used by Union Pacific, are branded as safety hazards by the people they’re meant to watch. Many railroad workers are aghast at the drone activity aimed at monitoring for unsafe actions. They’re complaining that the presence and movement of the drones distract from potentially dangerous work in and around the tracks.

Governmental Approval

What are some tips to protect children in your home?

Children are the most vulnerable people in society. They rely on you for everything. That includes keeping them safe. Whether you have children of your own or have other people's children in your home in California, there are some things you can do to keep them safe from serious injuries. 

Nationwide explains that there are several items and areas of your home that could pose a substantial risk to children. These include large items, such as the stove, televisions and bookcases. Such large appliances and furniture all pose a tip over risk that could injure or kill a small child. 

What is the history of FELA?

The Federal Employers Liability Act is a special law that offers protection to railroad workers. Because it is a federal law, it will protect you if you work in California or any other state. You may wonder why there is a special law for railroad workers and why this is not covered in the same way other work injuries are. Looking at the history of FELA can help explain.

SMART explains FELA is rooted in the late 1800s and early 1900s when the railroad industry was booming. New tracks were being laid across the country and railroads were being used to move everything from people to products. Because of the large increase in the industry, injuries started to become overwhelming and concerning.  It was a very dangerous job to work for the railroad.

What is the statute of limitations for personal injury?

Premises liability cases in California often fall under the area of personal injury. It could be someone came on your property and fell on ice, getting injured. Perhaps someone fell down your front steps on your porch and was injured. Whatever, the case may be, it is premises liability because you are responsible for damages that occur on your property, but it comes under personal injury law. With this area of law comes a statute of limitation, which according to California Courts, is how long a person has to file a lawsuit against you for the damages. 

The statute of limitations may vary and can actually be delayed. A delay is called tolling of the statute of limitations. It may occur when the person who was injured is unable to engage in a lawsuit. For example, if the injured person is underage, the statute of limitations may be delayed until that person reaches the age of 18. 

Can your personality change after a brain injury?

Even if a person in California has been fortunate enough to survive a traumatic brain injury as a result of a motor vehicle accident, loved ones often find that their friend or family member has changed afterward, particularly in personality or temperament. The consequences of a traumatic event can have repercussions for many years to come, including changing the person who has survived the event.

According to a piece on Brainline.org, an injury to the brain can result in changes to personality in two different ways. When the brain suffers damage, it disrupts the mechanisms that take in outside stimulus and processes it. The injury can damage connections that flow from the cerebral cortex, which performs the thinking, to the limbic system, which is the structure of the brain that controls and modulates a person's emotions. Because of this, a person may experience personality changes due to alterations in how emotion is experienced, understood, modulated and expressed by the brain. 

Motorcyclists more likely to die in motor vehicle collisions

The roads are designed to provide safe and convenient passage for motorists. Due to many factors, accidents and fatalities in the Oakland area are often unavoidable, especially for motorcyclists. They may be smaller than cars and trucks and require less space to maneuver. However, two of the biggest dangers to riders are car and truck drivers. According to the Insurance Information Institute, in 2015, motorcyclists had a 57.85 fatality rate in motor vehicle collisions which is almost five times higher than the death rate for passenger cars. 

Many accidents happen when motorists do not give riders the right of way. Fortunately, motorcyclists can take measures to protect themselves and reduce the likelihood of crashes and serious/fatal injuries. They should not overestimate their riding skills. Road conditions are constantly changing. Drivers and other riders are not always as attentive as they should be. Impairment, distractions and drowsiness are leading causes of accidents for both passenger cars and motorcyclists, states The Verge. 

Determining fault in an accident with a driverless car

Studies repeatedly find that human error is the cause of most car and truck accidents. The takeaway is that accidents are preventable, that a human caused the accident by doing something wrong. In legal terms, this is referred to as a negligent driver: someone who caused injury to someone else as a result of their actions.

In the dawn of driverless cars, the narrative is shifting. Humans are interacting with machines, and it requires a new conversation and a new way of looking at things. In December, an automated vehicle and a motorcyclist collided in San Francisco, causing significant injuries for the motorcyclist. He’s filed a lawsuit against General Motors claiming the accident was caused by the automated vehicle, which was being monitored by an in-car passenger who made an unsuccessful attempt to avoid the collision.

The reality of rail travel safety

Recent commuter train accidents may have left commuters a bit wary of train travel. It is scary to think about what happens when a train derails and how seriously passengers can get injured in such an accident. This may leave people wondering just how safe it actually is to travel by train. When looking at the options in California, people may be surprised at where trains actually rank. According to Fortune, rail travel is a relatively safe option. 

In fact, driving is actually the most dangerous way of getting anywhere. Air travel is considered quite safe, with trains being pretty close in the rankings. One reason airplane and train accidents make such big news is that they do not happen very often. Sadly, when they do occur, the consequences are usually horrific.

Do post-accident headaches mean much more?

California residents who survive an auto accident without much more than a slight headache are likely to feel grateful that they got off without serious injury. However, there are reasons to be cautious, even suspicious, of even mild head pain following an automobile accident. In fact, a headache could be a sign that you have suffered a far worse injury.

Findlaw points out that people may not always manifest serious injury symptoms immediately following an auto accident. In fact, it could be days or weeks before you discover something is truly seriously wrong with you. For example, people experiencing head pain due to a vehicular accident may have suffered a concussion, whiplash, a blood clot, or an injury to the neck or even the brain.

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Call us toll free at 800-689-7066 or use the email contact form to tell us about the circumstances of your injury or wrongful death case. We offer a free consultation and handle all FELA, FRSA and personal injury litigation matters on a contingency-fee basis. No fees unless we help you recover financial damages in a settlement or trial verdict.

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