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Macon GA Personal Injury Law Blog

Confused about a wrongful death claim? We can help

It is an unfortunate truth that sometimes a personal injury which results from the act of someone else is something that your loved one never recovers from. It may take days, weeks, months or longer, but serious injuries can become fatal ones.

Losing someone in your family is hard enough to cope with; losing that person because of the act of someone else is harder still. What can make matters even worse is when the consequences of your loss start making themselves felt: medical expenses and funeral expenses can be just the beginning. What if your loved one was key to your family’s ability to earn a living? You were counting on his or her ability to sustain your household, and now that is gone, too.

What laws target the distracted driver and drunk driver in Macon?

According to statistics released by the federal government, more than 150 billion text messages are sent each month in this country. It should not come as a surprise that 20 percent of teenagers and 10 percent of adults admitted to engaging in extended text messaging conversations while driving.

Georgia has enacted several laws aimed at making highways safer by restricting activities by drivers that put other people at risk of serious injury in an auto accident. For example, school bus drivers in Macon and in other communities are prohibited from using their cellphones for talking or texting while driving. This ban also applies to drivers who are younger than 18 years of age. Drivers 18 years of age and older are prohibited from texting and driving.

Comparisons between marijuana and alcohol on driving ability

At any given time there are many drivers on Georgia roads who are under the influence of alcohol, marijuana, or both. Studies that have been done concerning the effects of each of these drugs suggest that they have different effects. This post covers some of the findings of these studies.

Cognitive and automatic functions: Alcohol has a stronger influence on cognitive functions, which include motor skills and concentration in activities like steering, braking, signal detection, hazard perception, reaction time and hand-eye coordination. 

How does vicarious liability work with regard to truck accidents?

A central characteristic commercial trucks is that if you find yourself involved in an accident with one, the odds are good that it was engaged in a business purpose.

The significance of this observation becomes apparent when after the accident the time comes to identify the responsible parties against whom to pursue a legal claim for damages. Under Georgia law, the doctrine of vicarious liability can enable you to establish a cause of action against the business that owns the truck and not just the driver.

Georgia’s “scarlet letter” license plates

It is no secret that driving under the influence is one of the most dangerous actions a person can take, both in regards to their own safety and those around them. States all over the nation are taking a stand against this irresponsible behavior, marking habitual drunk drivers with special license plates. While some states may make their markings painfully obvious with a bright color, Georgia took a more subtle approach, using special serial numbers that only officers would know to look out for.

These plates were first put in use in 2006, and since then, fatal accidents caused by drunk drivers has reduced by 35 percent. While no one can say for certain that these plates were a main contributor to this statistic, it seems that officers who are able to locate habitual drunk drivers and stop them before they hurt someone is doing some good. In addition, Georgia’s method of identifying these drivers protects their identity better than bright stickers do.

Being a reasonable person may not prevent a car accident

 

Courts in Georgia use the legal construct of the "reasonable person" when determining whether civil liability exists in a negligence lawsuit, such as one arising out of a car accident. The reasonable person is not a real individual, but rather a concept to help the jury decide if the defendant's act was wrongful. The question is whether a reasonable person under the circumstances would have done what the defendant did that caused the plaintiff's injury or property damage.

What are the elements of a wrongful death lawsuit?

Wrongful death actions are fact-specific to every case. It is the role of a personal injury attorney to match the facts of your loved one's death to the cause of action elements so as to present the most effective case for either settlement or proof at trial, so an important consideration on your part would be to retain a law firm with experience in negotiating and litigating wrongful death cases

If a loved one of yours dies as the result of the negligent or intentional act of someone else, then under Georgia law you may be able to commence a wrongful death lawsuit against that person. Wrongful death actions are a species of tort, and generally have the following requirements for the plaintiff to prove:

The effects that each level of BAC has on the body

Alcohol has different effects on the body according to the amount of alcohol that an individual consumes. While Georgia motorists know that this is why drunk driving is dangerous, many not understand what the effects are and when they start to happen.

Individuals feel relaxed, have changes in mood, experience some loss in judgment and feel slightly warm when their blood alcohol concentration reaches .02 percent. This affects their driving performance by reducing the ability to track moving objects and do two tasks simultaneously. When their BAC reaches .05 percent, individuals usually feel good, exhibit exaggerated behavior, lose control of small muscles, experience reduced alertness, become less shy and have impaired judgment. The effects of this on driving include difficulty steering as well as reduced coordination, response to emergency situations and ability to track moving objects.

The dangers of looking away from the road

Based on the results of a study by the Liberty Mutual Research Institute for Safety, Georgia drivers should keep their eyes on the road as much as possible. According to the study, even a two-second glance away can be dangerous.

Using a driving simulation and tracking participants' eye movements, researchers in the study found that drivers who even briefly took their eyes off of the road were less able to process hazards than those who remained focused. This was the case even if they were aware of the hazard before looking elsewhere. Drivers tended to need a few moments to readjust their eyes when they once again focused their attention on the road, and this created problems for dealing with immediate dangers.

3 injured in Georgia SUV rollover accident

An 18-year-old man was ejected through the passenger window of his truck after Georgia State Patrol said he ran a stop sign and hit an SUV. He landed about 15 feet away from his vehicle. The collision on GA 10 at Stagecoach Road in Thomson also hurt two people in the SUV.

Police investigators said the 18-year-old driver of a Ford F-150 westbound on Stagecoach Road ran the stop sign for GA 10. His vehicle struck a Ford Expedition heading south on the highway. The impact rolled the Expedition over. A female passenger in the Expedition required air transport to GRU Medical Center. Emergency responders drove two injured men to the same hospital.