Serving clients nationwide
No Fees unless you win
Call for free Initial Consultation 580-713-4124
Zelbst, Holmes & Butler Oklahoma Personal Injury Lawyers

Lawton Oklahoma Personal Injury Law Blog

Distractions increase chances of highway zone crash 29 times

Drivers in Oklahoma, as elsewhere, can become distracted by their passengers or by their phones. A vehicle going 55 mph will travel the length of a football field in five seconds, and the average text takes five seconds to read, so it is clear that distracted driving is dangerous. A new study has shown that it is especially dangerous in highway work zones: A distracted driver's risk for a collision or near-collision goes up 29 times in these zones.

Researchers at the University of Missouri came to this conclusion after analyzing data from the Transportation Research Board's second Strategic Highway Research Program. This previous study provides naturalistic driving data collected between 2006 and 2015 from more than 3,000 drivers traveling over 50 million miles. Researchers reconstructed driver behavior and the surrounding environment based on this data.

Mild brain injury raises chances of mental health symptoms

Oklahoma residents should know that mild traumatic brain injuries, also known as concussions, can increase the risk for certain mental health conditions. A study conducted by researchers at the University of California in San Diego compared the prevalence of and risk determinants for post-traumatic stress disorder and major depressive disorder among two different groups: those that incurred mTBIs and those that incurred non-head orthopedic trauma injuries.

The first group consisted of 1,155 patients, the second of 230. All were 17 or older and treated in one of 11 U.S. hospitals with level 1 trauma centers. After three months, researchers found that the weights-adjusted prevalence of PTSD and/or MDD in the first group was 20 percent, compared to 8.7 in the second. After six months, the percentages were 21.2 and 12.1, respectively.

Safety advocates urge greater truck regulations

Oklahoma truck accidents can be particularly frightening. The impact of an 18-wheeler impact can be devastating, and people in smaller vehicles are far more likely to suffer severe injuries or even fatalities as a result of a crash. Due to the threat posed by truck collisions to roadway safety, a number of safety advocates are urging greater regulations. Proposed legislation would require all large trucks to use speed limiters and automatic emergency brake systems.

Advocates have said that Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration research indicated that trucks that did not make use of speed limiters had a 200 percent higher crash rate than trucks using them. Some trucking industry officials said that they would support a requirement for truck speed limiters set at 65 mph if cars were also subject to the same speed limits. They believe that safety is improved most when people travel at the same speed, despite the far more significant dangers posed by trucking collisions.

The process to follow after a car crash

A car accident can occur in Oklahoma at any time. Someone who is involved in an accident should stop at the scene and render assistance by calling 911. Ideally, an individual will not touch anyone or move a vehicle unless safety is an issue. Instead, anyone involved in a crash will start documenting the scene by taking pictures or writing down notes.

It's wise to have a camera or smartphone that can be used to take pictures of a crash scene. When the police arrive, anyone at the scene should be cooperative and issue a statement. Drivers or passengers should document any items that were damaged or went missing in the aftermath of the crash. Furthermore, it is important for crash victims to note any pain that they feel regardless of how minor it may seem.

Easy ways for truckers to help decrease roadway fatalities

The Chief Safety Officer of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration addressed truck drivers in Oregon and across the country at the annual 2019 Transportation Research Board meeting. During the meeting, he delivered the most recent crash statistics available. According to statistics, the number of deaths in large-truck-occupant crashes increased each year from 2015 to 2017. Additionally, the number of fatalities involving large trucks increased.

Though the CSO did not place the blame of the increase in fatalities solely on truck drivers, he did encourage truck drivers to decrease truck accidents by using their hands. Truck drivers were encouraged to use their hands to use their turn signals and flashers to communicate with other drivers on the road. Furthermore, truckers were encouraged to use their turn signals well before needing to turn and to use flashers when upcoming traffic stops or slows down.

Many patients with optic nerve tumors get misdiagnosed

For patients in Oklahoma with optic nerve sheath meningiomas, it can be difficult to obtain an appropriate diagnosis. These tumors of the optic nerves are non-cancerous and considered benign, but they can grow rapidly and have severe effects on a patient's quality of life. In many cases, people with these kinds of tumors get diagnosed with another illness or no illness at all. As a result, they received inaccurate and unnecessary treatments, some of which come with serious side effects.

The study, conducted at the Emory School of Medicine, reviewed the cases of 35 patients with optic nerve sheath meningioma whose physicians had failed to diagnose their tumors. Patients were an average of 45 years old, and 71 percent of them had their diagnoses delayed by an average of over 62 months (more than five years). While doctors had biased ideas about preexisting illnesses in some cases, other physicians misread laboratory test results. In addition, some patients never received correct tests that could allow their tumors to be properly diagnosed.

Effort to reduce speeding-related deaths is failing

According to a report from the Governors Highway Safety Association (GHSA), excessive speed is a major factor in around 33 percent of all traffic accidents with fatalities. Despite speeding being a persistent danger for drivers in Oklahoma and throughout the country, the issue receives little attention. Speeding is looked at as an acceptable driving tactic by much of the public, signaling that more needs to be done to make people aware of the problem.

Experts suggest that the issue of speeding needs to be tackled at a much deeper level if the public is going to be engaged. Speeding is dangerous for drivers and passengers, but it is especially harmful to pedestrians and bicyclists. Collisions are more likely to occur when speeding and the severity of those collisions is worse as well. In 2016 alone, more than 5,000 people lost their lives on rural roadways due to speeding.

Distracted driving increases with riskier use of handheld phones

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety has released a study comparing distracted driving rates between 2014 and 2018 and found that different forms of distraction are more prevalent than before. Oklahoma drivers should know that more drivers are using their phones for activities other than talking.

Researchers compared observational survey data from 2014 and 2018. These surveys were of drivers in four Northern Virginia communities, and they were observed while approaching or stopped at red lights. The study found that drivers were 57 percent more likely to engage in texting, sending emails, surfing the web and other activities besides talking. Despite this change, distracted driving rates did not change considerably between the two years.

Researchers hope new study will improve brain injury treatment

Physicians in Oklahoma often aim to diagnose and treat traumatic brain injury victims in a way that minimizes the risk of secondary issues. However, it's not always easy to achieve this goal. This is why the National Science Foundation (NSF) is funding a four-year study that will involve the use of new machine learning techniques to produce models that may be able to more accurately categorize patients, predict short- and long-term outcomes for TBI victims and present patient-specific intervention recommendations.

Affecting more than 10 million people worldwide, traumatic brain injury has the potential to become worse if secondary injuries aren't detected, treated or prevented. Researchers plan to use unique computational algorithms to provide new insights and tools for physicians so they can be more proactive with their interventions.

Drowsy driving a serious hazard in ridesharing industry

Ridesharing drivers in Oklahoma and across the U.S. often choose to work themselves to the point that they are sleep-deprived. Sleepiness can reach its peak during the early mornings and late at night, and it endangers both the driver and others on the road. This is the danger that the American Academy of Sleep Medicine has pointed out in a position statement published in the Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine.

Several factors are involved. Ridesharing drivers can be compelled by low fare and salary incentives to risk their safety for more work. Many drivers are independent contractors and are thus never screened for medical conditions that can reduce alertness: for example, obstructive sleep apnea.

Million Dollar Advocates Forum Super Lawyers u.s.News Best Lawyers Best Law Firms Zelbst Law Firm 2014 Litigator Awards TM Ranked Top 196 Of Lawyers The National Top 100 Trial Lawyers Trial Lawyers
The Best Lawyers in America AV Preeminent TM Martindale-Hubbell Lawyer Rating ABOTA American Board Of Trial Advocates Litigation Counsel Of America Fellow Trial Lawyer's College Thunderhead Ranch Dubois Wyoming