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Cincinnati Personal Injury Law Blog

Study finds drivers engage in many distracting behaviors

Some Ohio drivers may disapprove of others using cell phones while driving, but it might not stop them from doing so themselves. This was one of the findings of a survey conducted by Root Insurance, a company that gives discounts to drivers who set aside their phones while driving.

Nearly everyone, 99 percent, said phones were one of the top distractors for drivers. Almost half said they thought it was a danger, but many also said they engaged in the same behaviors themselves. Some of the top phone-related distractions they cited were group texts or chats, social media and streaming media. Many said they would give Uber or Lyft drivers bad ratings if they texted while driving, and many also said they believed themselves to be better drivers than those for Uber and Lyft.

Common injuries associated with Ohio car accidents

When you get behind the wheel of a car to drive, you reasonably expect that you'll safely reach your destination. There is always a certain amount of risk involved in any type of travel, even as a pedestrian. However, if you adhere to Ohio traffic laws and safety regulations, you improve your own safety and the safety of those who share the roads you travel. Then again, you can't control another person's behavior, which means your risk for injury increases if a reckless or negligent driver is nearby.

Even a minor car accident can result in injuries that have long-lasting consequences. Physical pain and discomfort are definitely not the only damages suffered by most accident victims. Your injuries in a car accident may necessitate taking time off work, which can lead to employment problems, as well as economic distress. There are numerous injuries that frequently occur in vehicular collisions. It is a good idea to document any symptoms you have and to seek medical attention, as needed.

AEB systems on 2017-2018 Nissan Rogues malfunctioning

Ohio readers may be concerned to learn that the automatic emergency braking, or AEB, systems on some 2017-2018 Nissan Rogues appear to be malfunctioning, according to an automobile safety group. As a result, the vehicles could come to a sudden emergency stop and cause a serious car accident.

The Center for Auto Safety says that the AEB systems on more than 800,000 2017-2018 Nissan Rogues have the potential to perform erratically and come to sudden, unnecessary stops, endangering the occupants of the Rogue and the occupants of nearby vehicles. CAS has received at least 87 consumer complaints regarding the issue. For example, one New York owner reported that his or her Rogue came to abrupt stops in the middle of the road and on railroad tracks. To correct the defect, some owners have started manually disabling the AEB system each time they start their vehicle. While this eliminates the risk of any malfunctions, it also eliminates any safety advantages the system provides.

States consider device that checks cellphone use after accident

Data regarding whether cellphones were a factor in motor vehicle accidents may be improved in Ohio if a new technology that checks phone activity is widely adopted by law enforcement. Nevada and New York are two states where the legislature has considered a device called the "textalyzer."

The textalyzer can be attached to a mobile phone to see what kind of user activity has occurred. The Israeli-based company that created the device says it does not store personal information, but it has not been field-tested. Furthermore, privacy advocates have raised concerns about its use. The original proposal before the Nevada legislature allowed a person's license to be suspended if the person refused to allow law enforcement to use the device on the phone, but it has been amended to say that a search warrant will be required if a person refuses. In 2017, the New York legislature rejected a measure that would have put the device in use, but it is once more under consideration.

Your post-accident headache might be a sign of TBI

When you're involved in an Ohio motor vehicle collision, the highest post-accident priority is to obtain medical attention. In many situations, however, accident victims appear to be okay but then develop symptoms of injury later. For instance, you might have internal bleeding or a small bone fracture that does not produce immediately apparent symptoms. Traumatic brain injury is a common concern when certain symptoms surface in the aftermath of a motor vehicle accident.

If you're recovering from a car crash, it is critical that you inform your doctor if you don't feel well, even if several hours, days or weeks have passed since the incident occurred. There is no harm in seeking additional medical examination. Your doctor can help determine whether there is underlying cause for your symptoms that may or may not be related to your car accident.

Daylight saving time and motor vehicle accidents

On March 10, Ohio residents set their clocks one hour forward. This unfortunately means getting one fewer hour of sleep for many people. Official guidelines issued by the American Automobile Association advise drivers to get enough sleep before heading out on roads and highways. Experts recommend seven to eight hours of sleep every night. According to a recent AAA study, an overwhelming 95 percent of drivers stated that it's dangerous to drive without getting enough sleep. Despite this prevailing belief, nearly 30 percent of study respondents also admitted to driving their vehicles while significantly drowsy within the prior month.

Sleepy drivers often cause motor vehicle crashes. According to the executive director of the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety, drivers who sleep less than five hours within a 24-hour period are just as dangerous as drunk drivers.

Keeping disaster at bay by knowing the risks you face as a biker

With spring closing in and the hopes that it will bring warmer weather with it, you may be eager to dust off your bike and hit the open road. As an avid biker, you may feel that there are few things that provide you with as much of a sense of freedom and excitement as taking to Ohio roads on your motorcycle.

However, in addition to the feeling of joy it provides, being a biker also comes with a certain level of responsibility. While you have a duty to protect yourself and others by practicing safe riding procedures, this goes both ways, and unfortunately, other drivers might not place the same level of importance on your safety.

How to avoid drunk drivers on Ohio roads

Drunk drivers remain an all too common problem on Ohio roadways. However, there are several things sober drivers can do to help protect themselves and others from impaired drivers. By following some tips, it may be possible to avoid alcohol-related collisions, injuries and fatalities.

First of all, drivers should be on the lookout for common signs of drunk driving. These signs include driving in the center of the road, weaving around, making turns that are too wide, almost hitting other vehicles or objects and driving on the wrong side of the road. Some alcohol-impaired drivers are also brazen enough to openly drink while behind the wheel.

How speed limiters could address rise in truck crashes

Road Safe America has looked at federal data on large truck crashes from 2009 to 2017, finding that there was an increase in large truck crash deaths in all but six states. A total of 35,882 people died in such crashes in that eight-year period. Ohio residents should know that the highway safety non-profit advises truck fleet owners to incorporate vehicle safety technology as a way to address the trend.

The states that saw the highest percentage increase in large truck crash deaths were Washington, Idaho, Colorado, Texas and Nevada. Those with the highest number of large crash deaths in 2017 were Texas, California, Florida, Georgia and Pennsylvania. Road Safe America found that most of these states have a truck speed limit of 70 mph or more: an unsafe speed for any vehicles weighing more than 80,000 pounds.

Survey shows texting, emailing while driving on the rise

More Ohio drivers might be using their phones to text and send emails while behind the wheel. However, it is still not clear whether this means that deaths from distracted driving are on the rise. Knowing whether a crash was caused by a distracted driver usually relies on someone in the accident self-reporting or investigators being able to examine drivers' phones. This can make gathering reliable data difficult.

On Jan. 24, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety released the results of a study that compared observational surveys carried out in 2014 and 2018. Researchers found that 57 percent more drivers in 2018 were seen using their phones for uses other than talking than in 2014. However, talking on the phone while behind the wheel actually appeared to be on the decline. Other research supports these findings.

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