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Western Washington Personal Injury Law Blog

Teens and young adults most at risk to text and drive

Despite stricter laws and publicity campaigns, distracted driving is widely known to cause accidents and fatalities. In fact, approximately 3,500 people die each year in the United States as a result of distracted driving-related crashes.

A distraction for drivers can be anything–a meal, other passengers, the car’s radio. But according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), electronic distractions are the most dangerous. Sending a text from behind the wheel combines three dangerous factors–it takes your attention from driving, your hands off the wheel and your eyes off the road. If you send a text while traveling at 55 MPH, you cover the length of a football field in that five seconds. An accident can happen in less than one.

Legal status affects premises liability

When a person goes onto another person's land as a guest of some kind, the visitor can generally expect that the owner will provide them with a reasonably safe environment. Washington law provides that the owner has a duty of care to visitors. If the owner's carelessness leads to unsafe conditions, and the unsafe conditions lead to the visitor being injured, the owner can be held liable for the injured visitor's damages.

However, the law recognizes that not all visitors have the same legal status, and owners don't owe the same duty of care to every type of visitor. The law recognizes several categories of visitors, including invitees, social guests, licensees and trespassers.

Important steps to take following a car accident

A car accident can introduce confusion into the life of an Edmonds resident. They may find that in an instant they are left without a vehicle to drive, pain that they have never experienced before and the inability to do their job. Getting one's life back on track after a vehicle collision can be difficult without help.

That is why it can be a good idea to get in touch with a personal injury attorney after suffering losses in a roadway accident. An attorney can help a victim organize the facts of their case and assess if they have a good claim for the recovery of their damages. Once a victim has gotten treatment for their injuries and has collected important information about their crash, an attorney can be a strong legal advocate for a victim's rights.

What is a traumatic brain injury?

When the brain suffers an impact, penetration trauma or another serious contusion a traumatic brain injury may result. Traumatic brain injuries can be mild and remedy themselves over time, or a Washington victim may suffer the effects of a serious traumatic brain injury for the rest of their life. Although traumatic brain injuries can look different in different victims, this post will provide general information on what issues a traumatic brain injury victim may have to live with following their harm.

Traumatic brain injuries can have symptoms that impact the physical, mental, and sensory functioning of a person's body. On a physical level, a person's balance and coordination may be compromised or they may have pain, dizziness, or even a loss of consciousness. On a sensory level, a traumatic brain injury can cause a victim to suffer from blurred vision, light sensitivity, and ringing in the ears.

Individuals have a duty to keep their properties safe

After living in a home for a period of time, a Washington resident may come to understand the unique quirks and characteristics of their residence. They may know which steps squeak when they are stepped on, or they may know where the floor bows and is not level. They may learn how to safely walk through hallways that are dark or not to use particular faucets that only produce hot water.

Living with defects in one's home may become easy over time, but for a visitor to a new location learning all about the structure's problematic issues can be difficult. When a visitor goes to a friend's residence and is hurt due to a danger that is unknown to them, they may have rights to sue under premises liability law.

Driver negligence causes many pedestrian accidents

Readers may not know it, but in most situations where they may encounter other people they owe strangers a general duty of care to act reasonably given their circumstances and surroundings. For Washington drivers, that can mean paying attention to the roads and using proper driving techniques to avoid collisions and injuries with the other cars and pedestrians that may be near them. A driver's duty to others can be breached if they allow negligence and distraction to creep into their vehicle operating habits.

When a driver fails to obey traffic laws or chooses to let distractions take their focus off of the road, they become a danger to everyone that they encounter. Their negligence can take on many forms, and this post will examine just how negligence may serve as a breach of a driver's duty to pedestrians with whom they must share the roads.

Dangers of Drowsy Driving

We frequently hear about the dangers of distracted driving or driving while under the influence, but there’s another form of dangerous driving that’s just as scary. It’s not as widely talked about but driving while you’re tired can have some serious consequences.

Drowsy driving is a form of impaired driving, just like driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol that can hinder your judgment and reaction time. Each year, drowsy drivers cause 100,000 motor vehicle accidents, 40,000 injuries and 1,550 fatalities in the United States. In Washington state, there were 64 fatal crashes and 308 serious injury accidents from 2011 to 2015 as a result of drowsy driving.

When can a person plead self-defense?

When faced with a threat and with no option to retreat, even the most mild-mannered person may find themselves in an altercation that they would have otherwise wanted to avoid. Washington residents who are involved in alleged assaults and batteries can sometimes find themselves facing serious criminal charges if the other parties claim that the accused individuals were the aggressors in their attacks. It is therefore possible for crime victims to be charged with criminal accusations for their involvement in protecting themselves and others when assaults and batteries occur.

In such cases it may be possible for individuals to use self-defense as a means of overcoming their legal challenges. In order to plead self-defense, certain elements must be proven and as with all posts included on this blog, readers are advised not to read the information contained herein as legal advice.

Paralysis can be a costly long-term condition

A Washington resident who has the full use of their body may rarely consider the costs and struggles that someone with paralysis may face as they fight to get through each day. Depending upon the type and severity of their paralysis, an individual may need to rely on the help and support of others for practically everything they do.

Paralysis is a condition that causes the victim to lose sensation in parts of their body because of an injury to their spinal cord. Depending upon where the victim's injury occurs, different sections of their body may be affected by paralysis. Generally, the higher on the spinal cord that an injury occurs, the more of the body that may be affected by paralysis.

What are my options after suffering a dog bite?

A dog bite or attack can inflict serious physical injuries on a Washington victim. Immediately after the attack, a victim should seek medical attention to make sure their health is not threatened and they are not at risk of contracting a serious illness. Once a victim has taken the appropriate precautions regarding their health and welfare, they may start the process of understanding their options for seeking justice.

A dog bite could fall under premises liability law, which would impose liability on the party that allowed the dog to have the opportunity to attack the victim. In many cases, dog bites are caused by the negligence of dog owners who fail to restrain their pets or who do not have adequate control over them to prevent them from causing injuries to innocent parties.

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The Law Office of James A. Conley

Law Office of James A. Conley
120 West Dayton Street
Suite D9
Edmonds, WA 98020

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