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Car accidents with bicyclists can be serious

Car accidents occur all the time in California, and when collisions occur with bikes, there can be serious injuries and even death. Bicyclists are not very protected, so motorists should drive extra carefully when they are in the vicinity. Either the cyclist or the driver may be negligent and the one at fault, but both should practice measures so everyone is safe on the road.

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, no matter whose fault it is, a crash with a vehicle can be devastating to the cyclist, and more than 750 accidents a year involve the death of the cyclist. An accident can occur at any time, but fatal ones occur more frequently between the hours of 6 and 9 P.M. and in urban areas. Males are more commonly the victims of fatal crashes, and alcohol is a factor in 37% of cases.

Is there a penalty for refusing a DUI test?

If you get pulled over in California because a peace officer suspects you are under the influence of drugs or alcohol, he or she may ask you to submit to a chemical test to determine your blood alcohol content. You may wonder if you have the right to refuse such a test. You may refuse to take a chemical test, but there are often severe consequences of this action. One of the possible outcomes is losing your license for at least a year.

There is important information on DUI arrests and charges on the website of the California Department of Motor Vehicles. According to California law, when you choose to drive in the state, you automatically agree to take a blood, breath, or urine test if an officer suspects you are intoxicated. If you refuse to take (or fail to complete) a chemical test, you may lose your license for one year. This is the penalty for the first offense. If the situation arises again within 10 years and you refuse again, you may lose your license for two years. State law does not give you the right to consult with a lawyer before deciding to complete or refuse a chemical test.

Boating can be deadly

The state of California is full of lakes, rivers, marinas and the ocean coastline, and boating is a popular pastime. While a great source of fun, boating can also be dangerous if the operators do not follow safety regulations and drive sensibly. As a result, boating accidents can lead to serious injury and even death. To help ensure everyone's safety, it is important that boat operators and their passengers understand the guidelines and regulations associated with being on a boat.

According to the U.S. Coast Guard Office of Auxiliary and Boating Safety, in 2017 there were 4,291 boating accidents across the country, and 658 of them were fatal. California accounted for 350 of these accidents and 7.2% of the deaths, trailing only behind Florida and Texas. The majority of the accidents were due to collisions with recreational vessels, and other common causes were capsizing, flooding, grounding and skier mishaps. The age group for the highest number of injuries was 20-29 year olds.

Helping older adults avoid falls and injuries

Slip-and-fall accidents are fairly common among California residents, especially those in older age brackets. Falls may lead to severe injuries that may take a long time to heal. Both individuals and companies may face legal responsibility for accidents that happen on their property. There are many factors that may increase the risk of slip-and-fall accidents. Eliminating these common issues may help protect older adults from falls and related injuries.

Falls are frequent among adults over 65 years old and may lead to significant injuries. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention state that 3 million older adults seek emergency room treatment every year for fall-related injuries. According to CDC statistics, about 20% of falls lead to injuries, including broken bones and head trauma. Falls often have serious health-related consequences, such as hip fractures and traumatic brain injuries. The medical costs related to falls are significant as well. In 2015, the cost for medical care related to falls was over $50 billion.

How to maneuver safely in construction zones

In some states, summertime means construction time. However, in California there may be work zones all year around. In populated areas of the state, this can be an irritation as well as a source of more accidents. Because of the risks these zones present, it is important that drivers remain alert and aware and take precautions to make sure they, and others, are safe on the road.

The Texas Department of Insurance outlines some of the dangers construction zones, also known as work or cone zones, present. These zones often have numerous cones, barrels and signs, and many of them have either lane changes or reduced lanes. All of this means that there are more hazards and less space for drivers to maneuver in. As a result, the most common types of crashes are rear-end collisions. Fatal accidents happen most frequently in zones in which speed limits are over 50 mph, and drivers are more likely to die than the workers themselves.

Here is how your insurance can be affected after an accident

When California drivers get into an accident, car repairs and medical bills are not their only concerns. They also worry about their car insurance premiums and how much their rates will increase. According to CBS News, after a car accident, drivers could face higher premiums for years to come.

Premiums could increase by an average of 41% after making just one claim. After two claims, drivers could see an increase of 93%. However, this varies by state. The stricter the insurance regulations are in a state, the higher the rates tend to be after a claim.

Dangers motorcyclists face

Riding a motorcycle in California can be risky, as there are dangers that motorcyclists face that other vehicle operators do not. Distracted driving by motorists is part of the cause, as is the fact motorcycles are more difficult to see. Both drivers and riders need to pay more attention so that everyone remains safe.

According to the Journal Sentinel, more people are driving while distracted, and this causes an issue for motorcycle riders as well as for other vehicles on the road. While it is illegal in California to use a cellphone without a hands-free device, some people still do. Holding a phone up to the ear can block the driver's view of a motorcycle when they change lanes, or even looking down at a phone can take one's eyes off the road long enough to not be able to see a motorcycle in time. Other distracting devices include tablets, GPS and the radio.

What are common symptoms of a traumatic brain injury?

Getting into a car accident may lead to serious health repercussions even if you do not have obvious injuries. If you do not experience any immediate symptoms after a vehicle collision in California, you may think that you do not have to worry about your health. However, physical trauma may cause a traumatic brain injury, and the symptoms of this condition do not always occur immediately. It is important to pay attention to any changes in your health, as there are several symptoms that may indicate the presence of a TBI.

According to the National Institutes of Health, some TBI symptoms may appear right away, but others may not be evident until days or weeks after the traumatic incident. If you lost consciousness during your car accident, this may indicate a TBI. However, sometimes there is no link between loss of consciousness and a TBI, so paying attention to all your symptoms after the accident is essential.

Common misconceptions about premises liability

Sometimes having an accident in California may only cause minor injuries, while other times it may lead to death. Whatever the outcome of the accident, FindLaw notes that the non-owner residents and property owners are responsible for maintaining a safe property. This responsibility is known as premises liability.

Premises liability perhaps most often involves commercial spaces. One of the most common accidents that take place are slip-and-falls. This may result from liquids, oils or even ice inside or outside of the business. Some business owners may believe that because they rent the building, the landlord is responsible or liable for slip-and-fall accidents. Forbes warns that this may not be true. Landlords usually include clauses in rental agreements to share with or offload premises liability responsibilities to renters.

Medical liability insurance flatlines; medical error deaths rise

Despite having one of the best health care systems in the country, California has been home to more than its fair share of medical malpractice cases. In fact, all across the United States, the news seems to favor cases of malpractice. Somehow malpractice premiums do not reflect this. According to Forbes, they have been relatively low and stable for a decade.

There are several reasons for the reduced costs to doctors:

  •          Well-capitalized carriers
  •          Medical liability reforms
  •          Consolidations within the industry
  •          Delivering healthcare using telecommunication technologies
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