Phoenix Injury Lawyer Blog

May 22, 2015

Stay Safe while Driving over Memorial Day Weekend

52215%282%29.jpgEvery year, many national organizations and some local to the Phoenix area attempt to forecast the travel that is anticipated during busy times like holiday weekends. These estimates can help motorists plan their routes or even adjust their thoughts on a weekend trip depending on the number of drivers expected on the roads and the peak hours in which those drivers will operate. This year, AAA anticipates 37.2 million Americans will travel during the Memorial Day weekend and that many of those will be doing so by road.

Increased traffic by itself can be a threat to safety as road congestion tends to lead to car accidents. As those who live in the Phoenix area know, highways and interstates in the Valley can turn to stop-and-go with little or no warning and when traffic backs up, it can take hours to clear again. All of this can happen with a normal amount of drivers on the road and conditions only worsen as a heavy dose of holiday traffic joins the masses.

But while traffic is somewhat of a concern, the greatest concern to many over Memorial Day weekend will be the threat posed by drunk drivers. Drunk driving accidents are responsible for approximately one out of every three traffic-related deaths in America each year and more than 250 people in Arizona are killed by drunk drivers annually.

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May 21, 2015

Police Chase Ends with Serious Motorcycle Crash

52115.jpgHigh speed chases initiated by law enforcement officials have been controversial for decades in the Phoenix area and across the country. On one hand, there is the need for police officers to enforce the law and to prevent offenders from escaping and further threatening the safety of others. On the other hand, high speed chases have proven to have disastrous and often fatal results and, in many cases, those that are injured are bystanders who happen to be in the wrong place at the wrong time.

According to PursuitSAFETY, a nonprofit organization dedicated to improving the road conditions for innocent motorists and police officers, one person is killed every day in America due to a police pursuit. Of those that lose their lives, one-third are innocent bystanders and a police officer is killed in a chase every six weeks. On average, one out of every 100 police chases results in a fatality. These numbers are sobering and they do not begin to touch on the non-fatal injuries that may be caused both to suspects and to innocent drivers and passengers when a police chase occurs. Due in part to the threat they pose to others, many police stations have instituted protocols to reduce the number of chases in which they engage and to stop pursuing fleeing vehicles in some high-risk situations.

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May 19, 2015

Car Crash in Gilbert Turns Fatal

51915%282%29.jpgCar accidents happen in an instant and often occur without warning. One moment a driver is traveling along a road or a highway in Phoenix and the next moment everything has changed because that driver was involved in a crash. Annually, more than 100,000 car accidents happen in the State of Arizona and the vast majority of those occur in highly populated, dense areas like the Valley of the Sun. There are hundreds of unique factors that lead to and contribute to Phoenix car accidents each year with thousands of different possible scenarios resulting. From single car accidents to massive pile-ups, no two accidents are identical and therefore it is important to understand how the laws affect your rights if you have been injured in a collision.

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May 18, 2015

2 Dead in 3-Car Crash in Glendale

51815.jpgThe National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reports that 26 percent of Americans ages 16 and older have been injured in a car accident in their lifetime and needed medical help as a result. That means that of those old enough to drive, 1 in 4 has been hurt in a car accident badly enough to seek relief and to incur expenses, like medical bills, related to that crash.

In many cases, victims just happen to be in the wrong place at the wrong time when a collision occurs. Nothing but unfortunate luck determines their collision as they do nothing wrong. This is almost always true for a passenger inside a car who does not control the car's motion and often may be true of some drivers. While nothing can erase the damage done by a collision, the laws in Phoenix and in the State of Arizona recognize that those who do not cause a crash should not be forced to pay for their losses personally; therefore, these victims can seek and often can obtain a financial payment for their damages against a responsible driver or an insurance company. When in doubt, speaking with a Phoenix personal injury attorney can help answer your questions if you have been hurt in an accident.

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May 14, 2015

Pedestrian Struck by Hit-and-Run Driver in Glendale

51415.jpgWhat rights do pedestrians have to walk in the Phoenix area? At first, that may seem like a silly question. Obviously, everyone has the right to walk from place to place, not only in Phoenix but in any city across Arizona. Yet when it comes to local traffic rules, it seems that drivers often forget or ignore the rights of others to walk along sidewalks, at crosswalks, and in other designated areas. This ignorance is not just rude but it is outright dangerous as failing to respect the rights of pedestrians can cause treacherous situations and may even lead to pedestrian accidents.

In the unfortunate situations where a collision does occur between a pedestrian and a vehicle, the pedestrian nearly always sustains injuries that can range from bumps and bruises to fractured bones and internal bleeding to, in the most extreme cases, death. Depending on the actual crash, these injuries may last from days to years or may never fully heal, leaving victims and their families to suffer indefinitely. Regrettably, nothing can nullify the suffering experienced by these victims but the laws in Phoenix are on a victim's side to enable him or her to seek relief. With a civil claim for damages, a victim or a victim's surviving family members may be able to obtain monetary compensation that can ease the financial burden experienced by these pedestrian collisions and that can enable those suffering to move forwards with their lives.

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May 13, 2015

Pedestrian Killed in Phoenix Car Accident

51315.jpgIn a perfect world, pedestrians would walk around the greater Phoenix area without their personal safety on their minds. No drivers would operate their cars in a negligent manner and no collisions between vehicles or involving pedestrians would occur. However, reality is far from perfect and in today's society, thousands of lives are affected annually by such collisions.

In 2013 alone, 1,596 traffic accidents involving pedestrians occurred in Arizona and nearly 10 percent of those, or 158, resulted in the pedestrian's death. Pedestrian accidents account for a small percentage of all collisions in Phoenix but the damages they cause are disproportionately large because there is little to nothing to protect a person walking from the full impact of a vehicle. As a result, serious injuries, damages, and even death are likely to occur in a Phoenix pedestrian accident or when a collision happens elsewhere in Arizona.

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May 12, 2015

Former NFL Wide Receiver Braylon Edwards Arrested for Extreme DUI in Scottsdale

51215.jpgIn Arizona, it is illegal to drive a car while under the influence of alcohol or drugs. Any amount of alcohol or intoxicant can be a crime but there is a presumption that a driver is impaired if that driver has a blood alcohol content of .08 or higher. But the laws in the state do not stop there; additionally, a driver with a BAC of .15 or higher is guilty of extreme DUI and those who drive drunk with additional surrounding circumstances may be guilty of aggravated DUI.

These laws apply to all motorists in the state, regardless of who those drivers are. This is a lesson that former NFL wide receiver Braylon Edwards reportedly learned last week when he was arrested in Scottsdale for extreme DUI.

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May 11, 2015

Seven Injured in Phoenix Light Rail Accident

51015.jpgTravel by train may seem like a fading concept in the country, but in Phoenix, it is becoming increasingly popular thanks to the addition of the city's Metro light rail system. For those who have lived in the Valley for some time, the light rail has been a staple since construction began in 2005. Service started in 2008 and has continued to expand in Phoenix, Tempe, and Mesa since that time. The light rail has become so popular that it was the nation's 13th busiest light rail system in 2014.

The goal of the light rail is to provide easy means of affordable transit to thousands of riders along the rail's route while decreasing traffic congestion in those areas. To date, many would consider the light rail successful at those overarching ideas and some in the Valley are anticipating the continued expansion of the system into new, convenient, and desirable areas.

Unfortunately, though, not everything associated with the light rail has been positive. Numerous train accidents have occurred involving light rail vehicles and some of those collisions have involved passenger cars and even pedestrians. Several of these incidents have caused injuries that have left victims in need of medical care and attention. As victims are often seriously hurt, they may not know how to proceed with the action needed to obtain the financial compensation they deserve.

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May 7, 2015

Chain Reaction Accident in Glendale Injures Several, Including Infant

5715%282%29.jpgChain reaction collisions are a serious threat to public safety in Arizona, especially in the greater Phoenix area. The risks associated with chain reactions are similar in some respects to those involved in more typical two-car accidents but those risks may be amplified. With a greater number of vehicles involved in a collision comes a greater number of drivers and an increased possibility of passengers. Simply put, the more people involved in an accident, the more potential injury victims that may get hurt in that crash.

Chain reaction incidents can occur for a number of reasons. Some may have a drunk or impaired driver to blame. Others can be faulted on a speeding motorist. In many cases, a driver may be distracted and may not notice stopped traffic in front of him or her. When driving in Phoenix, the interstates and highways are notorious for stop-and-go traffic which requires all drivers to be alert at all times. If a driver fails to pay close enough attention in the Valley, that driver may rear-end another vehicle and may cause a chain reaction accident.

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May 6, 2015

Abels & Annes, P.C. Settles Scottsdale Swimming Pool Accident Case for $500,000

5615%282%29.jpgWorking with co-counsel, the personal injury attorneys at Abels & Annes, P.C. recently settled a case on behalf of the family of a swimming pool victim for policy limits of $500,000.

The case stemmed from an incident last year in Scottsdale with a rental property pool located in the backyard of a home. That swimming pool was not surrounded by a fence or protected by barrier alarms as required by local ordinances in the area. Because of these code violations, a young child suffered from a swimming pool accident.

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May 4, 2015

Vehicle Strikes, Kills Pedestrian in Phoenix

5315%282%29.jpgPedestrians face a serious threat every time they walk on, near, or across a street in the Phoenix area. Logic dictates that pedestrians and vehicles are separate and therefore should not coexist in the same areas at the same times. The laws recognize this and require pedestrians and drivers to yield the right-of-way to one another, preventing the two groups from colliding. Yet despite all of this, pedestrian accidents happen regularly and most result in injuries to the walkers involved in those crashes. Tragically, 154 pedestrians involved in such crashes in 2011 in Arizona lost their lives due to their injuries.

When a pedestrian accident happens and it is due to the actions of a driver, owner of a car, or a city or municipality, the victim may be able to obtain compensation for any injuries, damages, or suffering that may happen. From medical bills to lost wages, all damages may be recovered if a victim chooses to seek relief in a court of law. Speaking with a personal injury attorney can help you realize your rights if an accident has affected your life.

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May 1, 2015

Multi-Car Accident in Phoenix Injures at Least Two

5115.jpgIn 2011, more than 32,000 people were killed in traffic accidents across the country. No state and no major city was spared from these devastating incidents and the Phoenix area saw its fair share of fatalities. But in addition to the loss of lives, thousands of additional collisions happen in Arizona every year that cause injuries short of death to the drivers and passengers involved and, in some cases, others in the area.

Whether a driver, a passenger, a motorcyclists, a bicyclist, or a pedestrian is harmed in a car accident in Phoenix, local and state laws may apply that protect that victim from the financial harm that accompanies his or her injuries. The right to seek relief, including monetary compensation, often belongs to injury victims who have the right to bring a claim against all the parties responsible for an accident. Victims can recover for medical expenses, pain, suffering, disfigurement, and lost wages among other damages depending on the facts involved in their particular accident. When questions arise about the legal rights of a car crash victim, speaking with a personal injury attorney may help illuminate the options available in the State of Arizona, including whether relief is possible.

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April 29, 2015

Children Attacked by Dog while Walking Home from School

42915%282%29.jpgDogs are a staple of American life for many families and they hold a place of endearment for still others. With more than 75 million households in the country reporting one or more dogs, it is clear that dog ownership is widespread and that the number of dogs in the nation is quite high as a result. Many of these dogs will live their entire lives without displaying signs of aggression or without being involved in an incident of violence with a human; however, every year, dog bite and attack incidents happen in the greater Phoenix area and many of those involve animals that did not display any issues prior to the attack. These incidents often produce injuries that require medical treatment and may cause lasting damage if the attack leaves scarring on a victim. Even more tragically, people are killed every year in dog attack cases and some of those occur in Arizona. In 2011, for example, 32 people lost their lives across the country in dog bite incidents.

Regardless of the type or breed of dog involved, the laws in Phoenix remain clear: if a dog bites or attacks a person and that person is injured, he or she may be entitled to bring a legal claim for relief against the owner of the dog or other person responsible and the victim may be able to recover monetary compensation for any injuries that occur. When in doubt, speaking with a personal injury lawyer who practices in Maricopa County or in Arizona generally may be a good place to start to learn about the laws, how they apply if you have been injured, and whether you have a valid claim for your damages.

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April 27, 2015

Boy Dies after Phoenix Swimming Pool Accident

42715%282%29.jpgMany in the Valley consider this time of year to be one of the best to call Phoenix home because the weather is so pleasant and days where the temperature hits triple digits are relatively rare. But with the late spring weather comes some potentials for dangers, and chief among them may be the threat posed by swimming pools in Arizona. The state has a very high ratio of private pools per individual home and also has a number of public pools accessible to numerous residents of the Valley. As such, swimming pool accidents pose a threat to many in Phoenix and not just those with small children.

The laws governing swimming pools and access to them leave little wiggle room because they are designed to keep adults and children as safe as possible. They vary somewhat depending on where in the Valley the pool is located but several requirements remain consistent: pools must be enclosed by a fence, wall, or otherwise; usually the gates that allow access to the pools must be self-latching; and pools should not pose an unreasonable threat to safety.

Despite these requirements, swimming pool accidents and drownings happen annually and result in numerous injuries and deaths. If you or your family member has been the victim of a pool accident or if someone you love was killed in a swimming pool, you may be entitled to obtain financial compensation for your losses and damages, though no amount of money can ever be adequate when someone loses their life. Consulting with a Phoenix personal injury attorney can help you understand your rights and what steps may need to be taken to get the relief you deserve.

Tragedy struck in Phoenix yesterday afternoon when a four-year-old boy was found unresponsive in a swimming pool. The child was pulled from the pool by a teenager who began CPR and emergency crews were notified. EMS officials transported the child to an area hospital but unfortunately, his injuries were too extreme and the boy lost his life as a result.

Authorities have confirmed that there was no fence or alternative barrier around the pool area though they have not stated whether that is in violation of laws in the area. At this time, it appears that the child was under the care of a family friend and not his parents when the friend, an adult, lost track of the child and he presumably entered the pool.

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April 24, 2015

SUV Accident Ends in Arizona Canal

42415%282%29.jpgMost people in the greater Phoenix area are unaware of how common single-car accidents are in the Valley, instead thinking of crashes involving two or more vehicles. In 2013, the Arizona Department of Transportation noted that 19,053 single-car accidents happened across the state and that many of those resulted in significant injuries to the drivers and passengers involved.

Some believe that if a single car accident occurs, blame must fall on the driver of that car because no one else contributed to the impact, but this is a common misunderstanding and one that can have tragic results if victims of these collisions believe it. Instead, while driver error can be one cause of an accident, other circumstances like inclement weather, poor road design, a mechanical failure in the car, or a defect in a tire might lead to an accident and might be beyond even the most skilled driver's ability to avoid. Instead of assuming what rights may exist following a collision, victim may want to speak with a personal injury lawyer to learn definitively of the laws that apply to their crash and their options to obtain financial payment for their injuries.

A single vehicle collision happened in Avondale yesterday and fortunately, left the driver with only minor injuries. Police have confirmed that a female motorist was operating her SUV on 99th Avenue near Thomas Road when the woman lost control for reasons that are not clear. The SUV began to list to one side and the driver attempted to over correct the issue but she was unable to keep the vehicle from leaving the road's surface and driving down an embankment where it entered a canal running alongside 99th Avenue.

The woman was able to exit the vehicle under her own power and she called authorities for assistance. While on the scene, police began an initial review of the facts and that investigation remains open at this time. It is not clear what triggered the initial series of events that led to the SUV's landing in the canal but it is clear that the woman was lucky to have sustained only minor injuries.

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