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Trucks are important to the Texas economy and the American economy as a whole, but there are strict regulations regarding how long a person can be behind the wheel of one of these vehicles. When a truck driver experiences fatigue, he or she is more likely to cause an accident.

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration has put regulations in place that limit how many subsequent hours a trucker can drive. Despite regulations, many truckers and trucking companies ignore these standards and continue to drive past the allotted number of hours. This comes from pressure to deliver loads faster and secure payment upon delivery.

Regulations regarding hours of service

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Most everyone has had a moment of inattention behind the wheel, whether it was while adjusting the temperature, trying to find a parking space or turning to address your children in the back seat. When you think about it, though, it's not difficult to see how a moment of distraction could end disastrously in a collision.

The reality is that negligent or reckless driving is preventable. Still, people get behind the wheel after consuming alcohol; they text and drive; or they willingly disregard the speed limits. If you have suffered injuries or lost a loved one due to a negligent driver, you may be considering the benefits of hiring an attorney to represent you in a personal injury claim or a wrongful death claim.

Dealing with insurers

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Texas readers know that drunk driving is a significant problem in the state, and it poses a serious threat to the safety and well-being of every person on the road. There is no excuse for intoxicated driving, and even a small amount of alcohol can have an effect on a driver's ability to safely operate a vehicle.

If you are the victim of an accident caused by a drunk driver, you have the right to take action and defend your interests. It is possible to hold these drivers accountable for their actions and irresponsible choices, and through a civil claim, you may be able to seek appropriate compensation for your losses, as well as your pain and suffering.

The effect of alcohol on a driver

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If you suffered injuries from a Texas truck accident, you know how difficult it can be to put your life back together after this type of traumatic incident. Truck accidents can lead to serious damage and grave injuries, and often, these types of accidents are completely preventable.

Trucking companies and their insurance providers do not have your best interests in mind. You may receive an offer for a financial settlement after a truck accident, but this may not reflect the true value of your case and the amount to which you have a rightful claim. You would be wise to carefully consider the terms of any agreement offered to you before you accept or sign anything

Fighting for what you deserve

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Every year, the Texas Department of Transportation records statistics on a number of subjects — one of them being fatal automobile accidents. The state has not yet released the 2017 numbers, but the 2016 numbers show that serious or fatal car accidents happen all too often in Texas.

What do the numbers say? What is causing these accidents? What can victims or — in the event of fatality — their surviving family members do after the fact? Can they seek relief for their losses?

Numbers, numbers, numbers…

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The issue of distracted driving isn't new. Since cars took to the road, drivers' attention has wandered away from the road and caused accidents. Since people began talking to passengers, eating, shaving or even reading a newspaper, the danger existed.

However, technological advances in recent years increased instances of distracted driving, with serious and deadly consequences. The technology that should make life easier also involves complicated maneuvers to use, which creates significant distractions. In 2017, the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety released research regarding technology and distracted driving.

What the AAA Foundation discovered

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Staying connected has often been a goal of many people. With loved ones and friends living far apart, it is not unusual for parties to want to find ways in which they can easily communicate and stay updated on recent personal news. With social media and apps within arm's reach, constant communication has never been easier.

Cell phones can easily allow you and others to conduct many different activities simply using a device in the palm of your hand. If you need to ask a quick question to a friend, you can simply send a text. If you need to give a general update about your day, you can post to social media. Even if you need to check your bank account, you can likely access an app that gives you information regarding your balances. Though this may seem convenient, when is cell phone use too much?

Cell phone addiction

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Sadly, as you may be aware, Texas regularly leads the nation in DWI fatalities. Of course, you already know the dangers of driving while intoxicated and the increased risk it means for both you and any passengers, not to mention everyone else on the road, pedestrians included. You know how important it is to arrange alternate transportation ahead of time if you're going to be drinking. If nothing else, you can call an Uber.

What you may be less certain of, however, is how to spot when another driver on the road has been drinking. Perhaps even more important is knowing what to do about it. Figuring out the signs of impaired driving can help you take preventative measures, if necessary, to keep you and your passengers safe, and reporting a drunk driver to the appropriate authorities can potentially save the lives of any number of others.

How to report a drunk driver

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Every driver in Texas will likely admit to getting behind the wheel while in a hurry and driving a bit too fast at least once. However, as you know, speeding is dangerous, and the reality is that driving too fast greatly increases the chance of a car accident and the severity of a collision.

If you were hurt in an accident caused by a speeding driver, you have options. Victims of excessive speed are able to hold liable drivers accountable through personal injury claims. You have no time to lose in ensuring the protection of your rights and learning more about your options for obtaining compensation after an accident.

Too fast is simply too dangerous

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Distracted driving accidents have been on the rise in Texas and across the country, despite increased education and law enforcement efforts. While not necessarily as risky as distraction behind the wheel, distraction on the part of pedestrians is also an issue.

In fact, statistics show an 11-percent increase in the number of pedestrians killed in the United States last year, and pedestrian distraction was a contributing factor.

Factors to Consider

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Driving in the Dallas area can be a challenge at times. Highways and interstates are often heavily laden with traffic, and chances are you have witnessed some close calls. No matter how cautious you are, your best efforts may not be enough to avoid a collision, especially if a distracted driver is in your midst.

Anytime a driver takes hands off the wheel, mind off the task of driving, or eyes away from the road, that driver is distracted.

Texting while driving is known to be the most dangerous form of distracted driving — just as dangerous as drunk driving — but there are other forms of distraction.

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Posted on in Uncategorized

Following the lead of other states across the nation, Texas recently enacted a statewide texting-while-driving ban. As of Sept. 1, it is now illegal to text while driving in Texas. A number of cities had already passed distracted driving ordinances, but state lawmakers had struggled to get a law passed until Gov. Abbott signed the new law in June.

It's important to understand that each year thousands of deaths and hundreds of thousands of injuries are caused by distracted driving nationwide. Now Texas law recognizes the dangers of texting behind the wheel.

Details of the new law

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These days people live their lives constantly attached to their cellphones, and in many ways, cellphones make aspects of life more convenient.

On the other hand, mobile devices also cause a considerable amount of distraction, particularly when it comes to driving.

Research has shown that use of hands-free or handheld technology behind the wheel quadruples the risk of an accident.

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Distraction is a threat to every Texas motorist, including you. Drivers who choose to participate in a distracting behavior can cause devastating harm, even in a matter of a few seconds of distraction.

Technically, distracted driving is any type of behavior that takes a driver's attention from the road and the obligation to drive safely. All forms of distraction fall into at least one of three main categories, and every form of distraction is preventable, negligent and dangerous for every person on the road.

What are the three main types of distracted driving?

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Like drunk driving, drugged driving is a dangerous and inexcusable behavior that puts other people at risk of collisions and serious injuries. The choice to get behind the wheel while under the influence of any type of intoxicating substance could be a decision that results in the physical harm or death of an innocent person.

If you were hurt in a Texas car accident that you believe was the result of drugged driving, you may be entitled to significantly more compensation than the insurance company initially offers.

Drugged driving is a growing problem in Texas and nationwide.

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One of the most common reasons for trucking accidents in Texas is fatigue. Truck drivers face stiff deadlines when it comes to reaching their destinations. As a result, they usually feel the pressure to stay behind the wheel longer than permitted. In fact, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration regulates how long truck drivers can operate their vehicles in one sitting.

When truck drivers fail to take time to rest, this can lead to extreme fatigue. Unfortunately, the fatigue can end up causing a serious accident leading to injuries. If you have been hurt in a truck accident caused by fatigue, you have the right to pursue compensation.

Why is fatigue such a problem?

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Distractions affect everyone throughout their daily lives. In many cases, you may not even realize that you have become distracted until something else catches your attention. Though distraction does not always have dire consequences, distracted driving can easily lead to a serious accident. If the crash involves a distracted semi-truck driver, the outcome could be devastating.

Though certain factors could impact any driver and lead to distraction, truck drivers face specific aspects of their jobs that could result in distraction. If you were injured by a distracted truck driver, you could potentially use that information as part of your personal injury case. Some common truck driver distractions include:

Cellphones

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After suffering a serious injury in a car accident, you may have reason to pursue a civil claim against the driver considered at fault. Though many individuals consider such legal proceedings relatively common, you may not fully understand the process that your case may go through as you work to gain compensation for allowable damages. Luckily, many civil claims move forward in a similar order, though some steps may change depending on state law.

If you would like to file a civil claim in hopes of gaining restitution, you may want to prepare yourself for a potentially long process. However, in the end, your efforts may prove worth the time. The first steps involved in the proceedings include:

  • Filing a complaint and summons: A complaint expresses the claims you wish to bring against the party considered at fault for your accident, also known as the defendant. The summons contains the order for the defendant to appear in court and gain awareness of the claim filed against him or her. Typically, your legal representation prepares your legal documents.
  • Answering the complaint: Once the appropriate parties have served the defendant with the summons and complaint, the defendant must then take action. He or she typically has a certain period of time in which he or she must attend to the legal documents. An answer may include any plaintiff's claims to which the defendant would like to admit, plaintiff's claims to which the defendant contests and claims the defendant has against the plaintiff.
  • Unanswered complaint: If the defendant does not answer the complaint, a default judgment could take place against the defendant.
  • Discovery: Discovery takes place when the parties involved exchange prudent information. This information may include written questions, documents relevant to the case and sworn statements transcribed by a court reporter or officer. The parties and their legal counsel then use this information to make preparations for the case.

A lot of work may prove necessary in order to complete just these first few steps toward your civil case. However, in many instances, the effort you put forth when preparing for court proceedings could play a considerable role in the outcome of your case. Therefore, you may wish to take the time to review the steps needed to get started and how you could bolster your efforts.

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Anyone who spends any amount of time driving through Garland on a regular basis knows how congested traffic flow can get. The last you thing you need while navigating busy roadways is to be sharing the road with an impaired driver. Every year in Texas, and throughout the nation, thousands of people die in accidents caused by drunk drivers.

Knowing what to look for may keep you safe

Would you know a drunk driver if you saw one in the traffic lane next to yours? The following is a list of signs that should cause you concern if you see a nearby motorist exhibiting any of them:

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The holidays are a busy time of year. Whether you are directly involved in planning and attending celebrations or merely caught up in the traffic congestion and daily delays the crowded streets of a festive season often cause, you may already be facing challenges getting to work on time and keeping up with your to-do list.

The last thing you need is to have your holiday plans interrupted by a car accident. If you've ever been stuck in traffic in Irving or Garland, you know it can take what seems like forever to get from point A to point B. If a reckless or negligent driver smashes into your vehicle, not only might it increase your delay, it may cause you serious injury as well.

Many accidents occur for these reasons

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