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Motorcycle Safety & Your Rights If You Are in a Motorcycle Accident in CT

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Motorcycle Accidents in CTMotorcycle Accident Rights

There are hundreds of motorcycle accidents in Connecticut each year. Dozens of those result in death. Motorists need to be extremely careful when riding on the state’s highways and roads. If you or a loved one sustained injuries in a motorcycle accident and you’re not the one at fault, you can file a case against the person causing the accident to get the compensation and justice you deserve. Knowing your motorcycle accident rights also involves knowing your responsibilities on the road.

License

Aside from abiding by all state traffic laws, you should also be aware of your responsibilities as a motorist. The state of Connecticut requires motorists to have a motorcycle endorsement to drive a motorbike on public highways. You need to enroll in a novice motorcycle safety course as well as pass a motorcycle knowledge test and vision test.

Stay visible at all times and wear safety gear

You need to stay visible all the time. During low visibility or when driving at night, you should always keep the headlights turned on. You should also wear reflective gear, so you’ll be visible to other motorists on the road. Wearing safety gear is advised as well. The state requires motorists and passengers under 18 years old to wear a helmet, sneakers, gloves or boots. Wearing protective gear will protect you in the event you are involved in an accident.

Don’t drive while under the influence of drugs, alcohol or prescription medicine

Don’t drive any kind of motor vehicle while under the influence of drugs, alcohol or prescription medicine. Aside from being illegal, it is dangerous as it increases the probabilities of being involved in an accident.

Use indicators

You should always use your indicators when making turns or changing lanes. Aside from allowing other motorists to know your intentions, it also reduces the possibility of being involved in a side-impact collision. All motor vehicle operators should know the hand gestures for left and right turns as many motorcyclists and bicyclists use hand gestures to indicate their intention of turning.

Your rights when invovlved in a Motorcycle Accident in CTMaintain safe distance

Keeping your distance is important. Always maintain a safe distance when passing other vehicles and avoid tailgating other motorists. Following other motorists at safe distance will reduce your chances of being involved in a rear-end crash. Riding within your limits is also recommended. Motorists often try to drive beyond their current abilities. This can cause unwanted results, especially for beginners. If you are a beginner, you should avoid driving a motorcycle after dusk and in bad weather. You should also avoid showing off.

If you follow these safety tips and all Connecticut state traffic laws, you will keep yourself and your passenger and other drivers safe.

What to Do If You’re Involved in a Motorcycle Accident

Maybe you follow all traffic laws and drive your motorcycle safely, but it doesn’t mean that other motorists do the same. Numerous accidents are usually caused by driver negligence. If you were involved in an accident and sustained injuries due to the actions of another driver, you may receive compensation for lost wages, medical expenses, and other losses. You can seek legal guidance from a motorcycle accident lawyer. Your lawyer will assess the circumstances of the accident and give you advice on the best legal solution to pursue.

INJURED?

 

Drive Safe in the snow

Winter Weather Driving Safety Tips

By | Car Accidents, Winter Driving | No Comments

avoid car accidents in the snowWinter Weather Safety Tips 

Connecticut is known for having some pretty bad storms and weather during the winter. It is not uncommon for car accidents to occur because of snow and slippery conditions to happen. During the long, cold, winter months you also have to contend with black ice and other hazardous conditions. Driving in winter weather can be very difficult and dangerous, and with winter right around the corner, here are some winter weather safety tips.

  1. Have a Winter Survival Kit

You should always have a survival kit in your trunk. This kit should have everything that you would need to survive until help comes. You should have booster cables, a small shovel, snow brush, wiper fluid, gloves, food, water, flashlight, blanket, candles, lighter, and a safety vest.

  1. Keep an Eye on the Weather and the Road Conditions

When you are traveling during the winter, you should have your route planned before leaving the house. Once you have your route planned, you should check the road conditions and the weather. This will give you a better idea of what you are facing, and if you should change your route.

  1. Winter Tires

While you might think that winter tires are a waste of money, not having winter tires leads to car accidents in snow and on ice. Winter tires are designed to grip the snow and ice, so you have better handling, braking, and traction. Depending on the conditions, winter tires can stop up to 25 percent shorter distance than all season tires. After 0 F, all season tires will lose almost their entire grip.

  1. Drive Safe in the snowSlow Down and Plan for Extra Traveling Time

This should be obvious, but most people do not slow down unless it is white out conditions. You should drive the speed that the road conditions allow for, not the speed limit. If you have to, put on your 4-ways and drive the speed that you are comfortable with. You also should not rely on the time that the GPS estimates. This time is calculated as if you were driving the speed limit with perfect weather.

All wheel drive and four wheel drive does not mean you can continue to drive as normal.  You still need to drive cautiously and reduce your speed.  You still need more space to stop your vehicle.  It’s almost inevitable that someone thinks their vehicle is invincible because it has all wheel drive.

  1. Fill the Gas Tank

Having a full gas tank lowers the amount of moisture that can get into the fuel system. Another benefit is that it adds weight to your vehicle. The more weight you have, the easier that it is too slow down with and without the use of your brakes.

  1. Know How to Recover From a Skid in Your Vehicle

Most people would never think that they would need this skill, but you should know how to do this. There are many handy guides online that can show you how to do this, but you need to stay calm. If you have ABS, do not pump the brakes because you can make the skid worse.  If you do start to spin turn into the spin to regain control of the car.

Avoiding car accidents in snow and from other winter weather is a challenge. While you can take care of your own driving and vehicle, you cannot control other people.   If you can it’s best to just stay put during winter weather.  If you can’t stay home then hopefully, these tips will keep you safe this winter.

What Do You Do If You Are In Accident With An Uber Driver?

What Do You Do If You Are In Accident With An Uber Driver?

By | Car Accidents, driverless car, Insurance, Lyft, self driving cars, Uber | No Comments

What Do You Do If You Are In Accident With An Uber Driver?Technology is amazing, isn’t it? Self-driving cars will soon be the mainstream. Virtual Reality is becoming a reality. And you can get a ride somewhere simply using an app on your phone.  Uber has taken the world by storm by offering an alternative to taxis throughout the world, but Uber comes with its own set of problems. Let’s not forget Lyft.  Lyft is similar to Uber but does not cover all the geographies that Uber does..yet.

It really is very easy to use Uber.  If you the app you basically just press a button and Uber sends someone to get you and bring you where you want to go.  Uber employs drivers all over the world to handle the transportation piece, and will soon use driverless cars in Pittsburgh.

Speaking to an anonymous source recently we discovered becoming an Uber driver is not that difficult.  Yes, they run a background check and a driver’s history check, which they send to the potential candidate, but they are not very strict in their hiring drivers.  The anonymous Uber driver we spoke with had a number of motor vehicle infractions including driving without insurance and registration, multiple speeding tickets and reckless driving.

Furthermore, Uber started sending this driver on jobs before he submitted a copy of his registration and did not require additional levels of insurance (which most insurance companies require).  Essentially you are paying for what you get and potentially put yourself at risk.  The question remains, what do you do if you are involved in an accident while a passenger in an Uber vehicle?  What do you do if your car is involved in an accident with an Uber driver?  Here are some of the laws that help you in achieving your compensation for the losses that occurred to you or the driver while you run into an accident when in one of these cars.

Injured? Don't Hesitate to Talk To Us!

In 2013 the rules of the transportation industry changed dramatically. This was the onset of what is then called ride sharing services; Uber, Lyft, Sidecar. These transportation services differed from taxis, buses, or trains, services that have become quite accustomed to because individuals were driving their own vehicles in exchange for compensation. When someone was in a taxi or a bus, it was clear who was responsible. The law required they have insurance. With the new drivers driving their own vehicles on these application platforms, the law was unclear as to whether there would be any coverage whatsoever for harm or injury caused in an accident?

uber or lyft driver accidentOn New Year’s Eve, 2013: Sophia Liu was killed while crossing the road with her mother. She was hit by an Uber driver who was looking down while making a right-hand turn. The tragic death of Sophia put the issue of responsibility into the forefront. As a result of handling that case, Attorneys designed a plan of action not just to recover from them but to change the entire system for the betterment of everyone in the United States. The attorneys helped to drive a bill AB2293 that went through the State Legislature. It requires that these transportation companies such as Uber provide one million dollars’ worth of insurance to people who are riding in the vehicle or people who are hit by one of these vehicles while transporting a passenger or going to pick a passenger up. It also provided for the first time protection for drivers of the vehicle who may be hit by uninsured or underinsured motorists.

Attorneys also involved themselves in the Ride Sharing Hearings as they wanted to make sure that protections were in place, the vehicles were properly inspected, the drivers would be vetted and the consumers would get the transportation and safety that they deserve. Many Law firms continue to work on legislation that will hold ridesharing or transportation network carriers responsible for their conduct.

What Should You Do If You’re Involved in an Accident With Uber, Lyft or Sidecar?

After taking care of the immediate accident steps as outlined in this blog post you will want to speak to a personal injury attorney.  The laws are still being shaped for this type of service and your accident may help to shape the future of ridesharing services.  Uber and Lyft will be quick to try to settle, as will the insurance companies, so it is important that you speak to an attorney.

It is extremely important when dealing with a new service model, or new technology, that you speak with a personal injury lawyer.  Trial attorneys are the best-prepared lawyers when it relates to issues like this.  Don’t try to take on Uber and/or the insurance companies on your own.  Get help.

 

 

6 Tips on What to do Immediately Following a Car Accident

By | Car Accidents | No Comments

5 Tips for After a Car AccidentA car accident can be a traumatic experience.  Many people find they are rattled and unable to think clearly right after a car accident.  Still others don’t know what to do immediately after.  Here’s a list of do’s and don’ts after a car accident.  Some of these do’s and don’ts are to protect you.  It is hard to prepare for an accident, obviously. We don’t go out and expect to be in an accident. Here are some of the things that can be done when you find yourself in such a situation.

  1. Always keep a first aid kit handy. First thing that probably should be done is to make sure that you are safe. Walk on a straight line to make sure there is no brain injury or concussion. In case you or anyone else is injured, call an ambulance. Move people with minor injuries away from accident spot and provide basic first aid. Remember, if anyone is seriously wounded then do not try move him as it can make the condition worse. This might aggravate their condition.

It’s also a good idea to keep a pair of scissors in the car in case you need to cut someone’s seat belt, especially kids in car seats.  After an accident you may be shaken and you may need to get a child out of the car quickly.  Fumbling with the seat belt may take you longer than normal given the situation.

2. Call police if needed. Calling the police and getting them to come to the accident scene is really important.  The police can ensure that everything is documented properly and that all accounts of the accident are recorded properly. Relying on your own memory, or that of the other driver, is not a good idea if there are injuries.  All too often stories change after the accident and you may find yourself fighting an uphill battle because the other driver doesn’t want to admit fault.  Make sure you get a copy of the police report when it becomes available.

3. Once the police have arrived you should attempt to move the car to the side of the road.  If you are unable to then you will need a tow truck (hopefully you have this coverage on your insurance policy).

4. Take photographs of the damage caused to your car and the other driver’s car, injuries that you and any other person suffered from the accident and the site of the accident. Pictures are worth 1000 words and in the telling of the story of your accident it may be worth thousands of dollars.

5. Now that you have pictures you need to collect some other information.  Make a note of all the details that are relevant.  Write down everything because you will inevitably forget some important facts.  Write down your condition as well as the condition of anyone else involved in the accident.  Make sure you have a copy of the other driver’s insurance information, and license plate. Be calm and never get angry.  Don’t get into an argument or admit fault.  Admitting fault at the scene of an accident can lead to your insurance claim being denied.  If the other driver becomes argumentative or violent it is best to get the police involved for your own protection.

What to do after a car accident6. Now that you have all the details worked out it’s time to speak to your attorney.  Explain to your personal injury attorney what happened so that they can determine the best course of action to protect your rights.

Your personal injury lawyer will advise you on working with insurance company.  You should not be quick in accepting your insurance company’s settlement without speaking to a car accident attorney.  The settlement may not be enough to cover your expenses and the insurance companies will try to settle for as little as possible.  Next file your insurance claim. Make an appointment with the company that provides you with the insurance.

The best way to avoid doing all of the above after a car accident is to drive safe.  Keep at least 2 car lengths between you and other cars, and if the road conditions are not good then keep more space between you and the other cars.

Safe Travels

Avoid Truck Accidents In Connecticut

By | Truck Accidents | No Comments

Truck accident in new haven ctAvoid Truck Accidents In Connecticut

It seems like you hear about someone being injured or killed in a truck related accident almost daily in Connecticut.   Tractor trailers drive on 84, 95 and 91, as well as some smaller highways, at high rates of speed and sometimes with little regard to the cars on the road.  Additionally people driving cars are at times also careless or unaware of their surroundings.  People driving cars have been known to cut off trucks that cannot stop as quickly as cars thus causing truck accidents that often lead to serious injuries or even worse, death. There are 400,000 large vehicle accidents every year. 3,675 people died in 2010 because of truck accidents and other large vehicle accidents. Sharing the road can be a matter of life and death for all drivers.

Below are the tips on how to stay safe while driving beside large vehicles such as dump trucks, tractor trailers and construction trucks.

When tractor trailers drive in the city they can be really hazardous if you are not paying attention. When they take right hand turns they have to swing out really wide.  It is suggested that you stay out of the truck driver’s blind spot when a truck is moving. A truck driver cannot see a car on either side of its trailer or cab.

Sometimes truckers have to swing out into the opposite lane to be able to make the turn. If you try to make a pass on the side its turning the driver might not see you and it can crash into or run over your car. It is difficult for tractor trailer drivers to see alongside their cabs & trailers because large vehicles have larger blind spots than cars do. Blind spots are the areas around a vehicle where other cars and trucks disappear from the view of the driver.  It is better to give them some room while driving. If you are attempting to drive around the trailer be aware that there is a good chance they cannot see you.

Trucks with trailers can’t see vehicles that are following closely behind them.  If you are so close to the trailer that you are unable to see the side view mirrors then the truck driver will be unable to see you. Maintain some distance between you and the truck to avoid a potential truck accident. The rear area directly behind the trailer is a blind spot.

When passing a trailer start your pass farther back then when passing a car. It will take longer to complete the pass because of the trailer’s length.  Make sure you have plenty of road ahead before beginning your pass.  Keep in mind that sometimes passing a trailer can be difficult because trailers create a lot of turbulence at high speed. It can be difficult to keep control of your vehicle especially if the weather conditions are less than perfect. While passing; the turbulent air movement around the trailer can make it seem as though your vehicle is not in your control anymore. That’s why it is best to stay as far over in your lane as possible throughout the pass.

Connecticut Highway Truck AccidentsAnother hazard when passing a large truck can be poor weather conditions, especially rain or snow. The spray from a trailer as a result of water on the road can reduce your visibility; or completely eliminate it. If you are going to pass in these conditions turn on your headlights so that the truck driver can detect your presence. Also make sure your windshield wipers are on so that you can see the trailer while passing.

Never hang out on either side of a trailer. The side areas of the trailer are the truck driver’s blind spot.   A trucker not being able to see you might try to switch lanes and cause a truck vs. car accident.  With a high cab and a long trailer it is harder for the truck driver to see smaller cars alongside his or her truck.  Stay out of their blind spots.  Pass as quickly as possible and wait until you are able to see the trucks front tires in the rear-view mirror before you move back into the lane.

Stay safe on our Connecticut Highways.  Stay Alert, avoid distracted driving and respect the other vehicles on the road.

Injured in a Truck Accident? Call Action Law Group NOW!

5 Questions to Ask a Personal Injury Attorney Before Hiring Them

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accident attorney in ctChoosing a lawyer for your personal injury case requires you to do some homework. In 1977, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that lawyers could advertise and the result over the years has been an increasing barrage of advertisements on bill boards, televisions, radio and etc. The truth is often times the lawyer that you see on television never really represents you. In fact you may never meet him. Ideally the relationship between a client and a lawyer should be one of a partnership.  You should have a series of questions that you ask a lawyer to determine if an accident lawyer is the right attorney to represent you and your best interests

Here are 5 questions you should ask your car accident attorney before hiring them to represent you:

  1. What is your firm’s communication policy? Your personal injury lawyer will be taking many steps towards a resolution on your behalf. For you to make the best decisions for your future and that of your family’s future it is important that the attorney have a policy of regularly contacting clients and responding to their emails and phone calls. If the lawyer isn’t communicating properly or clearly then it’s a proper indicator that you shouldn’t go with that accident attorney.
  2. Will there be any fees to get started? Most of the finest personal injury lawyers don’t take up front fees and will only get paid if they win your case. There are accident attorneys who do take up front fees, and some will ask to be paid before a settlement is reached. Consult with the personal injury attorney to determine what’s right for your situation.
  3. Do you pay more if the personal injury case takes longer? Some lawyers may have a fees that escalate if they take your claim to court. In addition it is possible that the personal injury attorney may charge interest on payments which can add up to out of pocket expenses for claimants. This can be tough if they injured party is not able to work as a result of their injuries.
  4. Does the accident attorney have any testimonials to share? A trusted personal injury lawyer will be able to provide you with proof that they have the expertise to get the best results in the form of testimonials from their clients. You may also want to find out the percentage of the claims they collect on and how many of those are settled out of court?
  5. How dedicated is the personal injury practice to cases similar to yours? Each discipline of personal injury law such as work place injury, motor-vehicle accident, slip and falls, dental malpractice, dog bites and so on may have many fine points of its own. If a lawyer doesn’t dedicate much of their practice to helping clients dealing with cases similar to yours, they may not be fully up to the challenge.  However they may also be able to refer you to an accident attorney who does dedicate their practice to a specific type of case.

workplace injury attorney in CTIf your personal injury attorney doesn’t fulfill any of these key points then it’s time to start looking for another accident attorney who can represent you properly.  It is important to recognize that each case is unique and you may find your set of circumstances may require a little creative thinking so always be open to the personal injury lawyer’s suggestions.  Just make sure your interests are protected and that you don’t have unrealistic expectations.

Injured or Hurt? Call Action Law Group NOW!

 

Pokemon Go & The Hidden Dangers

By | Car Accidents, Distracted Driving, Pokemon Go | No Comments

Pokemon Go & The Dangers of Playing ItPokemon Go & The Hidden Dangers

The trending phrase “Gotta Catch ‘Em All” has been altered slightly and is being used as “Gotta Dispatch ‘Em All” by the Emergency Medical Technicians.  Around America and soon around the globe it is feeling like the 90s again. Pokemania is sweeping across the planet with the release of the Augmented Reality (AR) mobile application Pokémon Go. If you are not familiar with it then you’ve probably been sleeping for the last few weeks.

Pokemon Go is an app installed on a GPS enabled smart phone or tablet.  Players then use the GPS to find Pokemon characters and capture them.  The game is using land marks and other historical locations as key locations in the game.

In just a few short weeks since its launch Pokemon Go has become the hottest social media app.  It is credited with getting kids out of the house and exercising.  It is also credited with creating a community of players during a time of rising tension and division in America.

Also during the first few weeks since launch two players have walked off the edge of a cliff in California.  There have been numerous reports of people walking into walls, poles and street signs.  There have also been reports of people trespassing into places they would not normally consider traveling through such as back yards or businesses that don’t normally have foot traffic.

Pokemon Go and Personal InjuryA player of Pokémon Go was prompted by the game to catch some Pokémon characters in a body of water. Instead she found a dead body floating in the river in Riverton, Wyoming. Police departments have reported that armed robbers have used the application to lure the victims in and rob them at gun point. Suspects have already been taken in as police received reports of robberies taking place in different areas.  One of the police stations in Australia has been set up as a Poke-Stop (place where Pokémon hunters get goodies). People started entering the station in order to reach the Poke-Stop. Officers had to stop them from entering the station. Poke-Stops and Poke-Gyms are set up in famous places like monuments or galleries.  Sometimes these ‘Stops & Gyms’ are placed in Strip-clubs, Churches and Cemeteries.  It hardly seems appropriate for a child playing the game to enter a strip club to play the game. Moreover the sanctity of Churches and cemeteries is ruined by people roaming around with their phones in their hands and yelling, “Yes, I got you now!!”  The game requires movement from the player and most players walk, but not all of them do. One gamer decided to bypass the walking portion and attached his phone to a drone and linked it to a computer in order to catch a Pokémon in his area. A person ended up having his home set up as a Poke-Gym. As a result his home was visited by lots of strangers playing Pokemon Go. His complaint was that all the foot traffic to his property makes his home look like a drug dealer spot.

The obvious danger is that someone staring at their phone while playing Pokemon Go will walk into things.  Even more of a concern is someone playing the game while driving, and there have been reported accidents as a result of this very behavior already.  Children have reported pain and even sores from playing the game.  Walking around with your neck down for extended periods of time can have a negative impact on your health.  This phenomenon has been detected in children already from the use of smart phones and tablets.  Pokemon Go would seem to amplify this health concern as children (and adults) spend hours upon hours glaring at the smart phone screen.

Playing Pokemon Go has risks including injury and safetyWith concerns such as robberies, sunburns, aches and pains or long term injuries,  critical accidents, & invading someone’s property; all experienced by gamers playing Pokemon Go.  It is important that gamers raise their awareness while playing the game.  Take care of your health and be alert of your surroundings.

Pokemon Go has some positive aspects but there are hidden dangers as well. It is important you know your rights should you or a loved one be injured as a result of someone else’s negligence while playing the game.  Speak to an attorney if you find yourself in this situation.

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The Future of Driving is Driverless

By | Car Accidents, driverless car, self driving cars | No Comments

Google Self Driving CarThe Future of Driving is Driverless

The exact date of availability of driverless vehicles for the general public isn’t yet known but it is going to be real soon. Carnegie Mellon University created the first true driverless vehicle in 1980. When we tell you that when the driver stands up; while the vehicle is moving; to collect tickets, it is an awesome experience we’re not exaggerating. Driver less vehicles have improved greatly over the past 10 years. By 2008 the advancement in driverless vehicles has come to a point where Volkswagen’s Pasat was able to stop after recognizing a stop sign on its own. Google has developed an entire team of driverless vehicles which has traveled 140,000 miles on the roads of California. It drove along other cars and obeyed all the rules of traffic including traffic signals. Google and Volkswagen are not the only automotive companies thinking about the future of self-driving vehicles. In 1980, Mercedes-Benz introduced hand gestures and eye controlled features in its car. At AUTOBAHN; BMW self-drove into the show and Prius A.V.O.S, a remotely controlled vehicle, was introduced in an automotive show in Tokyo. Automotive owners think that due to advancements in technology driverless vehicles are surely going to be available in the very near future. Google said that the cars will be available to customers by 2017 and Tesla’s Elon Musk will be introducing its product by 2019. Mercedes-Benz and all other big automotive companies plan to put out their product by 2020. Jaguar plans on stepping in the market by 2024 and Ford has set the target for 2025. If the automobile manufacturers (and Google) stick to this timeline then the future of driving is certainly going to be interesting.

Nissan Autonomous CarEvery year in the world 1.2 million people die due to road accidents. In the US 40% of the deaths involved alcohol. Since driverless cars don’t involve a driver and are computer operated driving under the influence could potentially become a thing of the past.  A future that involves the elimination of drinking and driving related accidents would be a bright one.  The increase in speed is going to come with an increase in safety. On average Americans spend 52 minutes in traffic each day. With driverless cars the need for traffic lights and other traffic control signs may become a thing of the past. The driverless cars will be able to coordinate with other cars on the road and will be able to move at faster pace as compared to normal cars. A better or efficient driving style will cause less emissions in the atmosphere which will not only improve the human lives but will also increase the life of our planet. In disaster relief situations, hurricanes, fires, tsunamis, an army of autonomous vehicles could be ready for rescue missions. There is no doubt that people are going to enjoy this upcoming technology.

The dilemma that will soon arise (it already has come up once or twice) is liability in the event of an accident, especially when injuries are involved.  Seasoned trial attorneys will surely be the first to take on the challenge of determining who is liable in a driverless car accident.  Experience in unique cases and in the court room will play a big role in shaping the future of liability for driverless cars.  At Action Law Group we do believe the future is bright, but not without its challenges.

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protect yourself from uninsured and underinsured motorists in CT

Protect Yourself Against Underinsured & Uninsured Drivers.

By | Car Accidents, Insurance | No Comments

Protect Yourself Against Underinsured & Uninsured Drivers.

car accident uninsured drivers ctIn the last week there have been several very bad car accidents on interstate 95 and interstate 91 in the New Haven CT area.  If you have spent any time driving in the area then you know that these roads are heavily congested with cars, buses, trucks and motorcycles.  Combine that with constant construction and/or bad weather conditions and you have a recipe for trouble.  It’s a safe bet that not everyone driving these highways have enough insurance to pay for damages and injuries in the event of an accident.  Our team decided we should discuss how to protect yourself from drivers who do not have enough insurance as well as uninsured drivers in CT.

Generally speaking, when you are in a car accident and someone else is at fault; that person is responsible for paying for your losses.  Most of the time that means the other driver’s insurance company will pay your bills for any property damage and medical expenses. That all works great as long as the other driver is carrying car insurance but unfortunately not everyone does. In fact across the U.S an estimated 1 in 8 motorists is driving without auto coverage, or is underinsured.  In some states this is an even bigger problem. In Oklahoma, twice as many drivers are uninsured. Every time you begin driving you are at risk of being hit by an underinsured or uninsured driver.

What should you do to protect yourself, your family and your property?  What happens if I am the victim of an uninsured or underinsured driver crashing into my car? Action Law Group is here to tell you don’t fret. . There is coverage available to protect you, your family and your passengers as well as your vehicle from drivers who don’t have enough coverage, or worse, none at all.

Connecticut law states that all vehicles need insurance but you are only required to carry liability and uninsured/underinsured coverage.  In Connecticut you are required to carry $20,000 per person and $40,000 per accident on both liability and uninsured/underinsured coverage.   The truth is this is not a lot of coverage and it can be exhausted very quickly.  Medical bills can quickly surpass $20,000 if there are serious injuries.

Let’s consider this example: Someone is driving without insurance and he or she crashes into your car.  The loss and injury caused by the other driver will be covered up by your insurance, but only up to $20,000 per person or $40,000 per accident.  If the other driver does have insurance but only the the minimum required by Connecticut state law then your insurance covers the difference.  This is the part of your insurance known as underinsured coverage.  If your medical bills, and/or liability are over the amount that is covered by both policies then you are on the hook for the remaining balance.

protect yourself uninsured drivers ctYou should sit down and talk with your insurance agent to fully understand your current level of coverage, and figure out what coverage options are best.  If you went with the bare minimum required by Connecticut law then you are putting yourself at risk.  If you have ever been involved in a car accident then you know it doesn’t take much to surpass your coverage especially if you only have the required minimum.

If you have been involved in an accident it is best you speak to an attorney to understand your rights and obligations under the law.  Without proper legal support you may not understand what your current insurance should cover, or what the other driver’s insurance should cover. It’s also important to note that insurance companies are going to be quick to offer a settlement in their own best interest.  They are a business and like any other business they are trying to make profits.  Make sure you have someone looking out for your best interests.

To recap:

  1. Speak to your insurance rep to determine what coverage you should have on your policy to minimize risk. We recommend speaking to an independent agent as they will provide you with the best coverage at the best rate since they are not tied to one insurance company.
  2. If you are involved in a car accident speak to an attorney to understand your rights and obligations under the law. Often there are time limitations on claims so it is best to act quickly.
  3. Be sure to review your insurance policy at least once a year.  You will want to check that you have enough coverage for underinsured and uninsured drivers.
  4. Follow these steps to avoid rear-ending another car while driving on heavily traveled highways like 95 and 91.  
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rear end car crash in CT

8 Easy Steps to Avoid Rear Ending Another Car

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8 Easy Steps to Avoid Rear Ending Another Car

rear end car crash in CTAbout 28% of the accidents in the US every year are rear-end collisions.  That probably shouldn’t come as a surprise to anyone because most of us only pay attention to the vehicle directly in front of us.  Many drivers rarely take in all of their surroundings before making decisions behind the wheel.  Lets apply a little science to our driving and see if can help a few of our readers avoid a car crash. The transportation Research Center of Ohio conducted a study.  They had sixty drivers drive 6,500 miles on both highway and city streets to see how they manage the car ahead.  The first thing that was noted is drivers didn’t always pay attention to how close they were to the car in front of them or how fast they were traveling.  If the gap between the driver and the car in front of them was steady for a period of time the driver tended to pay less attention to this, falling into a sense of complacency because the car in front of them hadn’t applied the brake in a while.  The study did find that glances away were significantly less in time if a car was in front of the driver than if there was no car immediately in front of them.  If a car was in front of the driver, glances away were between a tenth of a second to a full second in length.  If there was no car directly in front of the driver glances away were anywhere between 1.62 to 2 seconds in length.

Here are 8 Easy Steps to Avoid Causing a Rear End Car Crash 

Step 1: Your yearly car checkup should include:

  1. Brakes
  2. Tires
  3. Suspension

You should always ensure that your car’s traction is at its best.

Step 2: Try anticipating traffic halts beforehand. Look for brake lights and try looking ahead of the car that is right in front of you.

Step 3: Don’t forget to check on the traffic behind you.  Make sure your rearview and side view mirrors are in the best position possible before you start driving.  Let tailgaters pass. You can accomplish this either by switching lanes or slowing down to allow the tailgater to pass.

Step 4: Maintain your speed with the flow of traffic.  Speeding and weaving in out of other cars is a recipe for disaster.  You never know when someone may need to suddenly apply the brakes. 

Step 5: Maintain enough space between you and the other car.  Again, you never know when the car in front of you may suddenly apply the brakes.  Always remember the 2 second rule.  You can measure this by using landmarks.  If you reach a landmark such as a sign or traffic light less than 2 seconds after the car in front of you does you are following too closely.  Keep in mind that no matter what happens, if you hit the car in front of you the fault lies with you.

Car Accident Victim in ConnecticutStep 6: Use your turn signal whenever switching lanes and ensure you are giving the drivers around you ample time to see you are making the switch.  If you do need to brake it is better to apply the brakes slowly and several times to alert the cars behind you.  

Step 7:  Maintain complete focus while driving.  Don’t check your smart phone, eat, change radio stations or do anything else that will distract you from the task at hand.  No matter how brief the distraction is it can be deadly.  Federal estimates suggest that distraction contributes to 16% of all fatal crashes, leading to around 5,000 deaths every year 

Step 8: Avoid being in the blind spot of another driver for too long.  They may not be able to see you and have to make a split second decision to switch lanes or swerve.

Following these 8 simple steps will help you avoid being the cause of a car accident.  Connecticut’s roads can be very dangerous at times with our extreme weather conditions.  It’s imperative that you do what you can to avoid a car collision that may cause injury or worse.

If you have been involved in a car accident you should seek legal counsel to understand your rights and best action to be taken.

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