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Baltimore Motor Vehicle Accidents Law Blog

Car accident statistics

Everyday, car accidents in Maryland and around the country result in deaths, serious injuries and property damage. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's Vital Signs report that was released in October 2014, almost 7,000 people go to the emergency room everyday in the United States because of motor vehicle accidents. The majority of car accident victims are people over 80 years old, teens and young adults.

The CDC says that traffic accidents are the leading cause of injury in the U.S., and these accidents are also responsible for causing a lot of fatalities The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reported that there were over 33,000 deaths in 2012 that were caused by vehicle collisions.

Technology can minimize occurrence of wrong-site surgeries

Maryland surgeons know that a single surgical error may result in a medical malpractice lawsuit and a large compensation award to an injured plaintiff. Although not common, one error that occurs in some spinal surgery cases is operating on the wrong level of the spine. Surgery on the wrong vertebra can result in a spectrum of outcomes, from minor complications to the need for additional surgeries.

While surgeons generally take great care to avoid mistakes, wrong-site spinal surgeries occur approximately four times a week in the United States. The errors sometimes result from a mismatch between the MRI or CT scan that led to the diagnosis and prompted the surgery and the X-ray showing the metal pins identifying the patient's vertebrae that is taken in the operating room.

Maryland man in hit-and-run turns himself in

According to reports, a 73-year-old man who was allegedly involved in a fatal hit-and-run collision on Feb. 1 on the Baltimore-Washington Parkway turned himself in to federal marshals on April 8. The man reportedly told officers he didn't know what he had struck with his vehicle the night of the accident.

On the night of the accident, a 38-year-old man was changing a tire on a 2007 Hyundai Sonata as it was parked on the shoulder of the northbound highway, which is under the jurisdiction of the federal National Park Service. The man's 28-year-old fiancee was holding a flashlight, while a 16-year-old boy was also standing outside. The 73-year-old man's vehicle struck them, killing the 38-year-old man and seriously injuring his fiancee. The 16-year-old boy was reportedly knocked down but was uninjured.

Raising alcohol taxes could save Maryland lives

The results of a new study show that increasing state alcohol taxes in Maryland and across the country could save thousands of lives each year. The report was recently published in the online edition of the American Journal of Public Health.

Researchers in the study found that deadly alcohol-related crashes dropped by 26 percent in Illinois after the state increased its excise tax on alcohol by an average of just a few pennies per drink in 2009. More impressively, deadly crashes involving young people dropped by 37 percent. The findings were calculated using detailed records from the National Highway and Traffic Safety Administration. The authors of the study looked at crash data in Illinois from January 2001 through December 2011 to see if the tax increase impacted alcohol-related accidents. Wisconsin fatal crash data was used as a control for the study.

Maryland car accidents and sternum fractures

One of the more dangerous injuries a person might receive in a car accident is a sternum fracture. The majority of people who suffer from sternum fracture injuries receive them in motor vehicle accidents, and they are at greater risk if their airbags do not work or they are not wearing seat belts.

Sternum fractures occur with blunt force trauma to the chest. The injuries normally result in pain, swelling or tenderness in the chest region, wheezing or difficulties breathing when the person laughs, sneezes or coughs, a deformed appearance to the rib cage, muscle spasms or grinding or crunching sounds at the injury site.

Many distractions for teen drivers

Many states, including Maryland, have laws prohibiting texting and using a handheld cell phone while driving. But the problems of distracted driving, which killed over 200 people in Maryland in 2011, go beyond the use of electronic devices, especially for teens. According to a recent study published in the Journal of Transportation Safety and Security, 27 percent of teens reported that they sometimes change their clothes and shoes while driving. Other behind-the-wheel activities included changing contact lenses, doing homework or putting on makeup.

Although 40 percent of teens in the study also admitted to texting while driving, this figure is lower than in previous studies, suggesting that texting awareness campaigns may be working. The study asked teens to provide information about their driving habits and then to participate in a driver's education class that simulated the risks and difficulties of multitasking behind the wheel. After taking the short class, students were somewhat better at recognizing the risks of distracted driving, suggesting that classroom interventions may be helpful in addressing this problem. Other studies show that parents also play an important role in encouraging teen driving safety.

Maryland laws prohibit texting

Under Maryland state law, drivers are not allowed to use handheld devices while driving. This law especially applies to cell phones, which are often used for texting and directions. Texting while driving poses a serious risk for you, your passengers and other drivers because when you are texting, you are not devoting your full attention to driving.

If you are injured in a car accident it may be a good idea to work with our firm to pursue compensation. For example, if you believe that texting might have contributed to your accident, whether or not the other party was engaged in that activity at the time of the crash may be tracked by using phone records after an accident. However, it may be very difficult to obtain these records without professional legal help.

Man facing criminal charges following chain-reaction crash

A man who is believed to have caused an eight-car chain reaction accident in Maryland is now facing criminal charges as a result. The accident reportedly occurred in Baltimore County along York Road on March 2.

According to officers with the Baltimore County Police, a 71-year-old Lutherville-Timonium man caused the major accident while driving his Nissan Murano north on York Road. The driver allegedly was speeding when he struck a BMW 325 and a Jeep that were both stopped at the road's intersection with Shawan Road, setting off a chain-reaction accident.

Female passenger killed in collision

A 59-year-old female passenger was killed by a car accident that occurred in Maryland on Feb. 26. The crash happened at approximately 8 p.m. in Middletown, nearby Ridge Road. According to police, a 25-year-old man driving a 2012 Dodge Ram was traveling west on Route 40A before he crossed over onto the eastbound side of Ridge Road. He collided head-on with a 67-year-old Middletown man driving a 2008 Toyota Corolla.

The driver in the Corolla was transported to the hospital to receive medical treatment for injuries that were not life-threatening. The woman riding in the Corolla was also taken to the hospital, but ultimately succumbed to her injuries. Investigators believe that alcohol was a contributing factor in causing the collision. According to local reports, charges against the driver who caused the crash are currently pending. Maryland State Police were still investigating the incident as of later that evening. In order to investigate the crash and clear the scene, authorities closed Route 40A for more than three hours.

The cost of impaired driving in Maryland

According to statistics compiled by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, someone is killed in an accident involving an impaired driver every 51 minutes on average. These accidents have an economic impact of $59 billion per year in the United States. Overall, 31 percent of all traffic-related fatalities occurred in accidents involving impaired drivers in 2012. Of the 1,168 traffic deaths involving children under the age of 14 in 2012, 20 percent of those deaths were caused by drunk drivers.

More than half of the children who were killed in an accident involving a drunk driver during that year were in the car with the driver who was impaired. Among drivers who were killed in a car accident, 18 percent of them were found to have drugs such as marijuana and cocaine in their systems. In some cases, these drugs are used in combination with alcohol.

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