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Houma Louisiana Personal Injury Blog

Upcoming travel season looks like a busy one

Every Thanksgiving, residents of Houma will often take a road trip. Sometimes, it can be just a matter of traveling 50 or so miles to see relatives or even to do some shopping up in New Orleans, while at other times, residents instead opt for a longer vacation.

With a strong economy offsetting, even the higher gas prices motorists will face this year, the upcoming travel season is looking like a busy one. One organization estimates that the most people will travel this year for Thanksgiving in more than a decade.

Fire pits and bonfires can cause burn injuries

Fire pits and bonfires are common sights in autumn. They can be cozy, and they can provide property owners in Louisiana with the opportunity to have guests over to enjoy the fire with them. However, it is essential for property owners who have fire pits or a bonfire to ensure that these fires are kept safe. If not, it could lead to burn injuries.

Why are delayed brain injury symptoms so dangerous?

The actual impact and moments after your car accident are a blur, but other than feeling shaken up, you do not seem to have any obvious injuries, so you go home. Over the next two or three days, you feel stiff and sore, but with over-the-counter medicine and a couple days off work, you begin to feel better. However, a week or so after the accident, you start having headaches, dizziness, nausea and trouble sleeping. These symptoms may indicate a traumatic brain injury. At this point, you need to get to the doctor right away.

The damage does not stop with a blow to the head

A two-second distraction is all it takes to cause a car accident

Distracted driving is a serious issue in Louisiana and nationwide. According to the National Highway Traffic and Safety Administration (NHTSA), the chance of a motor vehicle accident doubles if a motorist takes stops paying attention to the road for more than two seconds. The agency reports that in 2016, distracted driving played a role in over 9 percent of traffic fatalities in the nation.

Some states are trying to prevent distracted driving by making it illegal to use hand-held devices behind the wheel, unless the device is connected to a screen built into the vehicle or the motorist is using voice commands. However, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety states that these measures may not be enough to prevent auto accidents due to distracted driving.

Fatal accidents involving semi-trucks are on the rise

Most semi-truck drivers in Louisiana take care to handle their vehicles safely. Unfortunately, there will always be truckers who, in an effort to make as many deliveries as quickly as possible, will drive recklessly. This is a danger to everyone on the road, and it could have fatal consequences.

The federal government reports that in 2016, over 4,300 individuals lost their lives in crashes with semi-trucks and other large vehicles. This is a sobering 28 percent uptick from the number of individuals who lost their lives in truck accidents in 2009.

Louisiana motorists must practice motorcycle awareness

When the sun is shining, and the autumn temperatures are pleasant, that is enough of a reason for motorcyclists to take a ride. However, riding a motorcycle is not without its risks. Of course, motorcyclists can wear helmets and carefully follow the rules of the road to keep themselves safe. Unfortunately, what they are not safe from -- no matter what precautions they take -- are motorists who are not practicing motorcycle awareness and are not looking out for motorcycles in their vicinity. When a motorist does not pay attention to motorcycles on the road, they could strike one, causing serious injuries or even death.

For example, motorcycles have a smaller profile than a standard automobile, and thus are not as visible. Motorists must take the time to check for motorcycles, especially when they are changing lanes or at intersections, to avoid causing a motorcycle accident. In addition, due to their small size, motorcycles seem to be farther away than they really are, and it can be difficult for motorists to determine how fast a motorcycle is going. Motorists must take care to check for motorcyclists when they are at intersections or entering or exiting driveways and parking lots, keeping in mind that a motorcycle may be closer to them than they think.

Was the driver who hit you using a smartphone at the time?

Drivers everywhere have a responsibility to pay attention to their surroundings. The advancement of technology has made it all too alluring for some drivers to use their phones while driving, in spite of the passing of laws to deter this habit.

The use of technology while operating a vehicle is a dangerous distraction that could lead to an accident or worse. If you are ever in a collision with a seemingly distracted driver, you may want to ask yourself: Was the driver using a smartphone?

CDC guidelines for brain injuries in children updated

Playing youth sports, such as football, soccer or hockey, can foster teamwork, perseverance and good sportsmanship in kids. Unfortunately, these sports are not without their risks and some physicians report seeing a significant number of traumatic brain injuries in children who play such sports. In fact, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has issued new guidelines on how traumatic brain injuries in children are tested and treated in Louisiana and across the nation.

According to one medical publication, in comparison to symptoms exhibited by teenagers and adults with a concussion, the symptoms a child exhibits when they suffer a concussion can last as many as four weeks. This is because that not only is there a direct blow to the head, but the child's head may whip back and forth, causing further injury.

Burn injuries can cause physical and emotional damage

Burns are fairly common injuries, that most Louisianans have experienced at one time or another. Burn injuries are classified in four ways: first-degree, second-degree, third-degree and fourth-degree. Most people have suffered at least one first-degree burn in their lives, for example, by touching a hot stove or experiencing a minor sunburn. These burns cause the skin to become red and are painful, but they usually heal on their own in a few days.

Second-degree burns are deeper and can cause blisters. Some make the skin appear white, since deep tissue is exposed. Third-degree burns are even more severe. They affect all layers of the skin and can also damage the victim's nerves. The skin will become thick and hard. Often, those who suffer third-degree burns must have skin grafts and reconstructive surgery to heal properly.

Louisiana ranks third in states with the most dangerous drivers

Deaths on U.S. roads are increasing. While a traffic fatality can occur in any state in the nation, according to a report based on information from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, some states are more dangerous to drive in than others. The report was ranked the safety of each state in the nation based on the state's rate of traffic deaths per 100 million miles traveled and the amount of traffic deaths due to a breach of traffic laws, driving under the influence of alcohol, driving above the posted speed limit and careless driving. And, according to this data, Louisiana has the dubious honor of being the third most dangerous state for motorists to drive in.

Since 2010, our state has been ranked three times as the most dangerous state to drive in, and it has the sixth greatest amount of traffic deaths in the nation. We also have the second highest amount of traffic deaths due to a breach of traffic laws. It has the fourth highest amount of deaths due to careless driving. Finally, it has the ninth highest amount of deaths due to driving under the influence of alcohol.

The Law Offices of Brent J. Rhodes 620 School Street Houma, LA 70360 Toll Free: 866-692-8703 Phone: 985-262-7799 Fax: 985-868-9429 Houma Law Office Map

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