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Lake Charles Personal Injury & Wrongful Death Law Blog

Study finds Louisiana drivers among the worst in country

Now that the holiday season is in full swing, millions of Americans will be traveling the roadways. However, not everyone will make it to their destinations safely. Each year, thousands of accidents result in the deaths and injuries of Louisiana residents. Many of these car accidents occur due to bad driving.

A recent study by CarInsuranceComparison.com finds that Louisiana is home to some of the worst drivers in the country. The study used fatal accident data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration to analyze numerous accident causes and determine which states had the worst drivers. Some of these causes included distracted driving, reckless driving, speeding, and drunk driving.

Recovering from injuries after a car accident

If people have been injured in a car accident, they may be overwhelmed by all the life changes they and their family may be experiencing. In addition to physical injuries, they may have to deal with emotional trauma, financial struggles and property damage.

Nothing can erase the pain and suffering people are going through. However, filing a personal injury lawsuit against the driver responsible for the car accident may be the best option. Determining who is at fault for a car accident can be difficult. A qualified attorney can thoroughly investigate the facts and gather the evidence needed to build a person's case. Police reports, witness testimony, expert testimony, Louisiana statutes and medical reports can provide critical information to support a victim's arguments. The success of people's suits will largely depend on whether they can prove that the other driver acted negligently and that this negligence caused people's injuries.

Parents win wrongful death suit after loss of their children

Losing a child can be one of the most devastating things that can happen to a person. Losing two children is almost unimaginable. One Louisiana mother and father know exactly how that feels. Two years ago, their two young children were fishing with their father and two other adults at a popular fishing spot when an SUV ran off the road, slid down an embankment and hit them. While the three adults survived, the two children were pronounced dead at the scene.

The police report indicated that the driver of the SUV was trying to avoid an oncoming car at the time of the crash and that she was not on her phone. She was charged with a misdemeanor traffic offense for careless driving, but a grand jury declined to indict her on two counts of negligent homicide.

Morning is most likely time for a drowsy driver car accident

Any sort of distraction behind the wheel can put your life and others' lives at risk. Drowsy driving can be just as dangerous as drunk driving or driving while distracted on Louisiana roadways. Despite this, many people continue to drive without the proper amount of sleep. The AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety reports that 328,000 car accidents are caused by drowsy driving every year. These accidents lead to 6,400 fatalities on average, devastating thousands of families.

A recent study by a website called "SleepJunkie" used data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration to determine which times of day are most dangerous for drowsy drivers.

Complications of a spinal cord injury

If you have suffered a spinal cord injury in a Louisiana car accident, you may experience a number of life-changing physical and mental consequences that affect your ability to move and function. The effects will vary based on the severity of the injury. Some people may experience a complete loss of motor function below the level of the injury. Others may experience a partial loss of function below the affected area.

However, many people are unaware of the complications that can come with a spinal cord injury until they experience it for themselves. One common issue spinal cord injury victims experience is the loss of bladder and bowel control. This can cause kidney infections, urinary tract infections, and other problems. Numbness and loss of skin sensation is also a common problem. This means you may not be aware of heat, pressure or cold.

GHSA releases study on teen car accident deaths and injuries

Most people are probably aware that teen drivers are more dangerous on the roadways than drivers in other age groups. A recent study by the Governors Highway Safety Association reveals there was a 10 percent increase in teen car accident deaths in 2015. However, the study also found that car accident fatalities of people ages 15 to 20 dropped 51 percent from 2005 to 2014, while serious injuries were down 59 percent in the same age group during the same period of time.

Louisiana teens are not necessarily reckless drivers, but they may lack the experience and skills to drive safely. Many teens don't know what to do when faced with a road hazard. Graduated driver licensing programs are intended to help with that. In fact, the overall decrease in teen auto accident fatalities and injuries has a lot to do with the GDL programs implemented by each state.

Claiming damages after a car accident

The injuries and damages you suffer in a car accident can turn your life upside down. With the bills piling up, you may need financial support as you recover. If your car accident was caused by a negligent driver, Louisiana law allows you to recover compensation to cover these bills by filing a personal injury suit.

The compensation you receive may cover various expenses and damages, both economic and non-economic. First, the jury may award you damages for your medical bills. These bills can cover hospital stays, rehabilitation, treatments, surgeries, physical therapy, and other expenses. You may also be awarded damages for medical treatments that you may need in the future.

How does a patient's privacy factor into wrongful death suits?

Any time you visit the doctor, you have a right to privacy when it comes to your medical treatment. The physician-patient privilege prevents a patient's private medical information from being disclosed without the patient's consent. That privilege does not dissolve when a patient dies. However, there are exceptions that may allow for medical records to be released.

When someone dies as a result of negligence in Louisiana, his family may want to file a wrongful death suit against those liable for what happened. In order to file a successful case, the family will need to prove that there was in fact a death and that it occurred as a result of negligence and that the surviving family members have suffered monetarily because of the death. A personal representative must also be appointed for the decedent's estate. If all of these elements can be established, the family may recover damages to help them recover financially from the loss of their loved one.

Drowsy driving is a major cause of accidents nationwide

Every day, we hear about how distracted driving is responsible for countless accidents on the roadways. But there is another common cause of accidents that we don't pay as much attention to. The AAA Foundation estimates that drowsy driving is responsible for an average of 328,000 car accidents each year. In a survey by the AAA Foundation, 43.2 percent of drivers admit to having fallen asleep behind the wheel at some point in their lives.

Drowsy driving is difficult to diagnose and drowsy drivers may be afraid to report their sleepiness after an accident. However, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration finds that drowsy driving has caused a minimum of 72,000 accidents from 2009 to 2013. These crashes caused approximately 800 deaths and 41,000 injuries.

Wrongful death suit filed after fatal Louisiana accident

Recovering damages in a personal injury or wrongful death suit will rest on determining who is at-fault for the accident. Three people filed a wrongful death suit claiming that an on-duty officer was responsible for their Louisiana mother's death.

The officer was heading toward the scene of a burglary when he was notified that the intruders had escaped. He then turned off his siren and lights and turned the vehicle around. The accident occurred shortly thereafter when he collided with the woman's vehicle, killing her. The officer suffered multiple lacerations and a broken leg.