Articles Posted in Personal injury

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News on the traffic safety front seems to be getting worse. The federal administration recently released its estimates of traffic accident deaths for last year, and the numbers are the highest on record in more than a decade.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration recently released its projected estimate of traffic accident fatalities that occurred in 2021.  The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration is projecting an increase in deaths in all 10 of its areas, including 44 states and the District of Columbia.

The administration estimates that a total of 42,915 people died in traffic accidents across the United States last year. That was the highest number on record since 2005.  It is also a significant 10.5% increase from the number of traffic accident deaths that were recorded in 2020. A total of 38,824 deaths were recorded in traffic accidents in 2020.  The 10.5% increase is the largest percentage increase recorded in the history of the Fatality Analysis Reporting System, the national census which provides accident-related fatality data.  Essentially, numbers for all types of accidents rose whether they were general motor vehicle accidents, pedestrian or bicycle accidents, speeding related, or motorcycle accidents,

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Hollywood star Bruce Willis’ family recently confirmed that the beloved actor is suffering from aphasia, a cognitive disorder that can affect a person’s ability to understand speech and even speak properly.  The condition can sometimes be linked to a past brain injury.

Willis’ family recently confirmed that the actor is suffering from aphasia. This is a condition that affects the part of the brain that is responsible for understanding speech and regulating the person’s ability to communicate and speak. The condition affects the person’s ability to understand both written as well as spoken language. This makes it difficult to read and comprehend what is being read. Understandably, the condition can pose challenges and can interfere with the person’s ability to lead a normal life. Treatments can include speech and language therapy that can help the person learn to communicate all over again.  Family members may need to be involved in these treatments as well.

There are several causes of aphasia. A traumatic brain injury caused by a blow to the head is one. Other factors can include a stroke or a slow developing brain tumor. Symptoms can include the inability to understand other’s speech, speaking unintelligible words, writing sentences that make no sense, inability to speak clearly and so on. For a person in Willis’s position – an actor who is required to memorize lines and reproduce these lines in front of a camera – the inability to comprehend written material or speak clear sentences can be crippling. In fact, for most people, an inability to articulate or understand language can pose a serious challenge to the ability lead a normal life.

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Laws requiring drivers and passengers to wear seat belts have been around for decades.  This is because your car’s seat belts are the front line defense in protecting you from injury if you are a victim of a car accident.  Seat belt reminders that emit an audible alert when a driver is not buckled up are useful tools that can help increase seat belt usage rates and reduce the number of injuries and fatalities in auto accidents every year. A new study, however, shows that many seat belt reminders are not that effective.  Auto manufacturers must be made aware of how beneficial this tool can be.

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety has developed a new rating program that aims to encourage car manufacturers to improve their seat belt reminder technologies.  According to federal standards, a seat belt reminder system should emit an audible signal that lasts for a minimum of 4 to 6 seconds.  In the case of a visual signal, the alert must continue for a period of at least 60 seconds. However, the Insurance Institute for Highway safety has conducted earlier research that indicates that alerts that continue for much longer can be more effective in encouraging motorists to buckle up before they begin driving. In fact, the research found that seat belt usage increases by as much as 34% when audible alerts last much longer than just 4 to 6 seconds. The research indicates that increased seatbelt usage can save as many as 1,500 lives in auto accidents every year.

According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, audible signals must not only be long-lasting, but must also be loud enough to allow the motorist to hear the signal. Some of the systems that the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety studied as part of its research, had alerts that were barely audible above the cabin noise and other vehicle noise.  In others, there was a 25 -second gap between intermittent audible signals, and this could be too long a gap to prove effective in encouraging a motorist to buckle up.

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Brain injuries are caused by traumatic blow to the head and can be a result of car accidents or even slip and fall accidents.

March was National Brain Injury Awareness Month to put the spotlight on life with these catastrophic injuries and the way forward for car accident victims and other people who live with these injuries.

There are many myths about brain injury. Here are some common ones.

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Seat belts are the most important safety feature in your car. A new study finds a high risk of spinal injuries in children who were unbuckled during a motor vehicle accident.

Spinal injuries are not very common in young children, but they are very serious injuries when they do occur. Spinal injuries account for approximately 1 to 2% of all injuries involving children. Although they are comparatively rare compared to other types of injuries, they are linked to a significant drop in the person’s quality of life and his ability to enjoy life after the injury.

The researchers wanted to see the incidence of spinal injuries, especially pediatric spinal fractures, in younger motorists between the age of 15 and 17. The researchers focused on a total of more than 34,500 patients as part of the study. The average age of patients in the study was 15 years.

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A new report ranks Georgia roadways and highways at number 14 in the country  based on their condition.

Every year, the Reason Foundation releases its annual report which measures and ranks all fifty states based on the condition of highways across the state, including the condition of its pavements, traffic congestion, condition of bridges and traffic fatality rates. The report also measures the cost effectiveness of the state’s spending on its highways and bridges.

The report places our state at first place in urban arterial pavement condition, which are roadways that have four to eight lanes. Georgia placed third for the condition of rural arterial roads, roads that have two to four lanes.  Overall, Georgia seems to fare much better, compared to most of our other southern neighbors. The state is ranked at number 28 in overall fatalities.  Georgia was ranked at number 23 in the condition of its rural interstate pavements. Traffic congestion is another important marker for traffic safety, and the state was ranked at number 34 on this marker. The state was ranked at number 7 on structurally deficient bridges.

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Predicting the amount of brain damage that has resulted from a traumatic brain injury continues to be challenging for physicians.  A new study finds that measuring a certain type of brain protein and its count in the blood could help determine the extent of the damage that has occurred.

Thousands of Americans suffer a traumatic brain injury every year.  A traumatic brain injury occurs when a person suffers a blow or jolt to the head. A blow like this could occur when a person has been in a car accident or motorcycle or bicycle accident. A brain injury can also occur in a fall accident, especially in a situation where a person has suffered a fall from a height. A traumatic brain injury can also occur in a workplace accident, like one involving a blow to the head from falling debris or equipment. In all these cases, there is trauma to the head, which could translate to damage to the brain. 

Although there are many procedures that can help detect the extent of the injury that has occurred, determining the exact extent of brain damage can be challenging for doctors. It’s hard to overstate the importance of determining brain damage severity as quickly as possible. When such a determination has been made, treatment can begin quickly, and the chances of recovery are greater. 

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Effective on July 1, motorists must adhere to a new law that aims at keeping bicyclists safer and preventing accidents involving these vulnerable road users.

If you are a motorist in the metro Atlanta region, you must know of the new 3-feet law that recently went into effect. The law specifically requires motorists to maintain a minimum distance between their car and a bicyclist riding next to them. The law requires that motorists maintain a minimum of 3 feet in distance between their car and the bicycle next to their vehicle.  Keeping a greater distance between a cyclist and a motor vehicle can help prevent unnecessary accidents on the roads.

Drivers under the new law are required to move over onto the next lane while passing a bicyclist if it is safe to do so. If this is not possible, the law requires motorists to drop speeds to 10 mph below the speed limit when they are around a bicyclist, or at least 25 mph. Maintaining 3 feet of distance around the bicyclist all the time is key.

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Slip and/or fall accidents can cause serious injuries and result in long-term disability to a person’s life.  Spinal injuries are often the result of fall accidents.  A fall does not have to occur from an elevation for the person to suffer a spinal injury. Even a fall from a low height, like a few stairs, can result in an injury that is serious enough to result in lifelong consequences.

Reduced bowel function is just one of the many consequences of a spinal injury. New studies find that physical interventions that include walking with the help of exoskeleton devices can actually enhance bowel function in these patients.

An exoskeleton is an external device, that is worn by a spinal injury patient who has limited mobility as a result of his injury. The device works like a scaffolding of sorts to hold the patient up. It can help the person walk and stand independently without support. Exoskeleton devices have been found to be of great help to spinal injury patients who are suffering from some degree of paralysis and cannot walk or stand without support.

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A brain injury is one of the most devastating injuries a person can suffer after an accident.  The road to recovery after a brain injury can take months and sometimes years.  Brain injury patients who suffer from fractured or disrupted sleep may have a much more difficult path to a complete recovery from their injuries.

Brain injuries are some of the most serious injuries that can result from a slip and fall accidents. And when a person falls from an elevated area, such as a ladder or a higher floor, he is very likely to sustain serious injuries to the head. This can cause a brain injury, which may result in possibly long-term damage.

A new study finds that brain injury patients benefit from sound and significant amounts of sleep.  Unfortunately, the injury itself may cause patients to suffer from sleeplessness or fragmented sleep. This, in turn, can slow down the healing process, making it even more difficult for the person to move towards a complete recovery from his injury. The study found that patients who had trouble sleeping were much more likely to suffer from physical and mental symptoms after a concussion, compared to patients who enjoyed better sleep. This indicates that sleep patterns can affect a person’s recovery after a brain injury.

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