Car accident fatalities increased nationally in 2012

Texas drivers may be interested to learn that, according to a report released on Nov. 14, the number of fatalities caused by car accidents increased in 2012. This is the first time the number of fatalities has increased in the last seven years. Data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration revealed 33,561 fatalities in 2012, a 3.3 percent increase, or 91.1 fatalities per day.

When the numbers were analyzed, it was discovered that motorcyclists, bicyclists and pedestrians made up the brunt of the increase in the number of fatalities. Motorcycle fatalities increased by 7.1 percent and accounted for 15 percent of all fatalities. Bicycle fatalities increased to 6.5 percent while pedestrian fatalities increased by 6.4 percent. A senior associate at The National Center for Biking and Walking stated that, while the technology that helps keep motorists safe when an accident occurs is continuously becoming more advanced, those who are not protected by the steel cage of a vehicle do not have the same luxury.

While the number of fatalities increased nationally, 13 states had reductions in the number of overall fatalities, and 18 states had reductions in the number of fatalities caused by drunk driving. In addition, the number of fatalities for teen drivers also decreased 3.9 percent for 10-to-15-year-olds and 5.7 percent for 16-to-20-year-olds.

In Texas, those who become involved in a car accident may face severe physical and emotional trauma that could impact the rest of their lives. However, those who are injured may be eligible to seek compensation for their injuries and other associated damages by filing a personal injury lawsuit. A personal injury attorney may be able to help those who have suffered in an accident obtain fair compensation from insurance companies and the parties responsible.

car accident kills 3

A hit-and-run collision on Nov. 15 in Dallas claimed the lives of three women, aged 26, 28 and 45. A toddler was also severely injured and taken to the hospital for treatment. A witness reported that the toddler was grabbed out of the car and handed to someone, although police were unable to verify this information.

The collision occurred at the corner of North Prairie Creek Road and Dunlap Drive. The women were returning from a shopping trip when they were struck while turning left on Dunlap at 6:30 p.m.

Mourners brought flowers to the site of the accident, which was not far from the victims’ home. Family members have plans to hold the funerals in Mexico, the victims’ home country.

There was little reported about the identity of the driver in the other vehicle as the individual was not at the scene of the accident once the police arrived. Witnesses told police that the driver was going approximately 80 miles per hour.

Car accidents can occur for many reasons, including road conditions, poor weather or a negligent driver. Being a family member of a victim who died in a car crash can be financially as well as emotionally difficult. Children left behind may struggle from lack of financial support, and lost wages could affect spouses of those who died in the accident. If the accident was the result of a negligent third-party, a claim may be filed to compensate those affected. Recovery is also possible for the injuries and property damage associated with such a loss.

Volkswagen recalls 2.6 million cars worldwide

According to a spokesman for Volkswagen Group, the company is recalling around 2.6 million vehicles around the world, including some sold in Dallas, over electronic and drive system problems. The automotive giant fears that these flaws could lead to a car accident that would cause injuries, although there have been no reports so far of accidents related to these recall issues.

Volkswagen has recommended that automotive mechanics substitute mineral oil to lubricate dual-clutch gearboxes in place of synthetic oil. This issue affects about 1.6 million vehicles. The company also stated that 800,000 Tiguan compact SUVs could suffer from lighting defects and another 239,000 Amarok pickup trucks should be checked for leaks of fuel. Volkswagen previous recalled nearly 385,000 vehicles in China earlier this year after claims of sudden acceleration reminiscent of the Toyota problems that resulted in injury for some owners.

The addition of sophisticated technology to new models has led to an increasing number of recalls affecting not only Volkswagen but also Chrysler, Toyota and Mitsubishi. The auto industry blames mass market demands for the frantic pace that drives new developments which may not be fully vetted before releasing vehicles to the public for sale. However, it is still the responsibility of an automaker to ensure that vehicles are safe before putting them on the market.

Those who have suffered an injury in an accident that is related to a recall issue may have a claim against the automobile manufacturer. A personal injury attorney may be able to review the facts of the victim’s case and offer advice on how to collect damages in a recall accident matter.

Accidents show common driving dangers for teens

It’s probably unsurprising that teenagers are accountable for a large amount of car accidents across the U.S. After all, new drivers lack the experience to be able to avoid many crashes, and teenagers can also make unwise driving choices while older drivers know better. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, car accidents are the leading cause of death for teenagers. Every year, over 2,000 teenagers are killed and more than 200,000 injured in accidents throughout the country, and teen drivers are responsible for about 30 percent of the costs of motor vehicle accident injuries.

While it’s true that many teenage drivers knowingly break driving laws, such as driving while intoxicated, speeding or driving aggressively, the majority of young drivers simply lack the experience and skills to avoid an accident. Driving at night takes time and practice to master, as well as knowing how to recognize hazards and make split-second decisions to keep a crash from occurring. Many teenage drivers also don’t wear their seatbelts, increasing the risk of being hurt or killed in an accident.

Accidents show various risks for teen drivers and passengers
When passengers are in a car, teenage drivers can be encouraged to take risks or they may just want to show off for their friends. This may have been the case for a group of teenagers in an accident in Dumas, Texas, last March, as reported by CNN. When the driver of an SUV failed to stop at a stop sign, the vehicle was hit by an oncoming gas tanker, causing both vehicles to burst into flames. Tragically, all five teenage passengers were killed and the driver was seriously injured.

Distracted driving is another major culprit. In another accident in Allen, Texas, last November, a 17-year-old girl was killed when she crashed while texting her boyfriend and sister, said NBC Dallas-Fort Worth.

Good parental habits can help prevent accidents
When parents choose to drive safely and set a good example, these habits can be passed on to teenage drivers, and possibly save lives. State Farm offers the following tips for parents:

  • Drive safely and courteously.
  • Obey traffic laws.
  • Don’t drive aggressively, and avoid distractions.
  • Buckle seatbelts before driving and ensure passengers do the same.
  • Don’t speed, tailgate or drive while tired.

Unfortunately, even with the best examples it’s not always possible for teenagers to prevent accidents. Medical expenses arising from auto accidents can add up quickly. People who have been injured in an accident caused by an inexperienced, intoxicated or negligent teenage driver should contact a personal injury attorney to discuss their options.