How effective are truck brakes?

Posted by John Harris on Fri, Dec 10, 2010 @ 11:21 AM

Q: How effective are truck brakes?

A: Compared with passenger vehicles, stopping distances for trucks are much longer. On wet and slippery roads there are greater disparities between the braking capabilities of large trucks and cars. Current brake problems are aggravated by the poor maintenance practices of some truck companies. Out-of-adjustment brakes are the most common reason for authorities to order trucks out of service.

Topics: Truck Accident Injuries & Deaths

Does defective equipment play an important role in truck crashes?

Posted by John Harris on Wed, Dec 08, 2010 @ 12:15 PM

Q: Does defective equipment play an important role in truck crashes?

A: Yes. Institute researchers who examined crashes of large trucks in Washington State found that tractor-trailers with defective equipment were twice as likely to be in crashes as trucks without defects. Brake defects were most common. They were found in 56 percent of the tractor-trailers involved in crashes. Steering equipment defects were found in 21 percent of crash-involved trucks.

Topics: Truck Accident Injuries & Deaths

What is shoulder dystocia?

Posted by John Harris on Tue, Dec 07, 2010 @ 12:48 PM

Q: What is shoulder dystocia?

A: Shoulder dystocia is a birth injury that leaves the newborn with limited movement ("palsy") in one of the arms. When the anterior shoulder of a newborn gets "stuck" in the birth canal, the physician must make additional maneuvers to extract the newborn from the womb. When these maneuvers are done incorrectly, the brachial plexus becomes stretched, and shoulder dystocia can sometimes result. Shoulder dystocia is a factor in about 5000 births a year. With larger babies (more than 9 lbs.), the incidence rate of shoulder dystocia is much higher. Alert and well-trained doctors can avoid shoulder dystocia through several techniques, including Caesarian section.

Topics: Medical Malpractice Claims

How can violations of the hours-of-service rules be reduced?

Posted by John Harris on Tue, Dec 07, 2010 @ 12:18 PM

Q: How can violations of the hours-of-service rules be reduced?

A: Current regulations allow drivers to use written logbooks of their hours, which truck drivers call "comic books" because they are so easily falsified. Onboard computers reduce the opportunities for violating the rules because they automatically record when a truck is driven and its speed. The Institute and five other organizations petitioned the Department of Transportation to require the installation and use of tamper-resistant electronic onboard computers on commercial vehicles whose drivers now are required to maintain written logbooks. The National Transportation Safety Board also has repeatedly recommended that such recorders be mandated. In 2000, FMCSA published a proposal to require these devices but dropped the proposal from the final work-hour rules that take effect January 2004. This proposal has met with a lot of opposition from some members of the trucking industry, but some trucking associations have endorsed a requirement for electronic recorders.

Topics: Truck Accident Injuries & Deaths

How often are these hours of service rules violated?

Posted by John Harris on Sun, Dec 05, 2010 @ 11:15 AM

Q: How often are these hours of service rules violated?

A: Studies suggest that these work rules are commonly violated. A 1990 study by the Insurance Institute for Automotive Safety estimated that, on a 1,200-mile route from Washington State to Minnesota, more than half of the tractor-trailer drivers violated hours-of-service regulations. When the Institute surveyed long-haul tractor-trailer drivers in four states in 1991, almost three-fourths of the respondents indicated they violated hours-of-service regulations. About one-third of them said they routinely drove more than 60-70 hours. More than 25 percent reported working 100 hours or more per week, and 19 percent admitted to falling asleep at the wheel one or more times during the preceding month. More recent studies by other researchers confirm that hours-of-service violations by interstate truckers continue to be common. The long hours driven by many truckers can lead to the use and abuse of stimulants.

Topics: Truck Accident Injuries & Deaths

Have you received any honors or awards?

Posted by John Harris on Fri, Dec 03, 2010 @ 12:31 PM

Q:
Have you received any honors or awards?

A:
AV-Rated by Martindale-Hubbell, Million Dollar Advocates Forum, listed in The Best Lawyers in America 1999-2010, listed in Virginia Super Lawyers 2006-2010, one of The American Trial Lawyers Association's The Top 100 Trial Lawyers in Virginia.

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Get a FREE copy of the THE SMART CONSUMER'S GUIDE TO YOUR PERSONAL INJURY CASE.  Just ask for your free copy at The Harris Law Firm

CALL 800-"SEND BOOK".  Leave your information on the answering machine and get your FREE copy of the THE SMART CONSUMER'S GUIDE TO YOUR PERSONAL INJURY CASE without having to talk to anyone.  Or, simply fill out the contact information and a copy will promptly be sent to you.  This $19.95 value is yours for free, just for asking.

Contact The Harris Law Firm now for a FREE consultation regarding your car accident case. There is no obligation to hire a lawyer.  There is no fee except costs until our personal injury attorneys successfully recover fair compensation for you.

Get more information on car accidents in our firm's car accident library.

HOW TO FIND THE "RIGHT LAWYER"
10 Things you must do after an auto accident
3 Things To Do BEFORE Talking to an Insurance Adjuster
Several Minivans Fare Poorly in Safety Tests

Topics: General

What is your opinion regarding clients educating themselves on legal issues?

Posted by John Harris on Thu, Dec 02, 2010 @ 12:56 PM

Q:
What is your opinion regarding clients educating themselves on legal issues?

A:
I believe clients are at a huge disadvantage in dealing with legal issues without sufficient knowledge. That is why I wrote The Smart Consumer's Guide to Your Personal Injury Case. This book's subtitle is The Things You Should Know and The Questions You Should Ask. If a member of the public has not been in in an accident they should read chapter three - "A Mini-Course in Insurance Law". This chapter will tell them the things their insurance agent probably did not tell them. If they have had an accident, before they talk to an adjuster, before they hire an attorney, and before they sign any form they will want to read The Smart Consumer's Guide to Your Personal Injury Case.

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Get a FREE copy of the THE SMART CONSUMER'S GUIDE TO YOUR PERSONAL INJURY CASE.  Just ask for your free copy at The Harris Law Firm

CALL 800-"SEND BOOK".  Leave your information on the answering machine and get your FREE copy of the THE SMART CONSUMER'S GUIDE TO YOUR PERSONAL INJURY CASE without having to talk to anyone.  Or, simply fill out the contact information and a copy will promptly be sent to you.  This $19.95 value is yours for free, just for asking.

Contact The Harris Law Firm now for a FREE consultation regarding your car accident case. There is no obligation to hire a lawyer.  There is no fee except costs until our personal injury attorneys successfully recover fair compensation for you.

Get more information on car accidents in our firm's car accident library.

HOW TO FIND THE "RIGHT LAWYER"
10 Things you must do after an auto accident
3 Things To Do BEFORE Talking to an Insurance Adjuster
Several Minivans Fare Poorly in Safety Tests

Topics: General

What happens if the accident is partly my fault?

Posted by John Harris on Tue, Nov 30, 2010 @ 12:30 PM

Q: What happens if the accident is partly my fault?

A: Good news. FELA uses the doctrine of comparative negligence. This doctrine allows workers who are partially at fault for their own injuries from a railroad accident to recover some portion of the damages. For example, if a jury determined that the worker was 50% negligent and the damages $200,000, the worker would get half of the damages or $100,000. (under the doctrine of contributory negligence a plaintiff who is even 1% negligent would get nothing!) FELA claims may be pursued in State or Federal court and a jury trial is provided to the plaintiff. It is up to the jury to determine if there was negligence on the part of the railroad, co-workers or other railroad personnel; if the plaintiff was negligent and contributed to the accident and resultant railroad injury, and if so to what degree; the amount of damages suffered by the railroad worker as a result of the railroad accident.

Topics: FELA Claims: Don’t Let Your Employer Railroad Your

What are the hours-of-service rules (work hour limits)?

Posted by John Harris on Tue, Nov 30, 2010 @ 11:12 AM

Q: What are the hours-of-service rules (work hour limits)?

A: Under federal hours-of-service regulations that will take effect January 2004, interstate commercial drivers won't be allowed to drive more than 11 hours or drive after 14 hours on duty until they have had a 10-hour break. Drivers cannot drive after accruing 60 work hours during a 7-day period or 70 work hours during an 8-day period, but a "restart" provision will allow truckers to actually go for 17 hours in 7 days or 88 hours in 8 days.

Topics: Truck Accident Injuries & Deaths

As an injured railroad worker, am I required to prove negligence by the railroad, its workers, contractors or agents?

Posted by John Harris on Sun, Nov 28, 2010 @ 12:27 PM

Q: As an injured railroad worker, am I required to prove negligence by the railroad, its workers, contractors or agents?

A: Yes. Unlike workers compensation, FELA requires proof that the railroad injury was caused in some way by the negligence of the railroad, its workers, contractors or agents.

Topics: FELA Claims: Don’t Let Your Employer Railroad Your