Teenage Driver Safety: What To Tell Your Kids Before They Get Behind the Wheel

September 12, 2018 Auto Accidents

Children in southern California are heading back to school for the start of a new school year. If you have

Student driver passes exam and instructor hands her car keysChildren in southern California are heading back to school for the start of a new school year. If you have teens who are just starting to drive, there’s no time like the present to give them valuable lessons on teenage driver safety.

In the last year for which statistics are available, 2,333 teenagers between the ages of 16 and 19 were killed in vehicle crashes across the country — in other words, six every day, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Another 235,845 teens in this age group went to emergency departments with injuries sustained in vehicle accidents during the year. That’s an astonishing 646 teens per day.

Safe Driving Rules

Make sure your children know how to drive safely. Don’t assume that passing their driver’s test is enough. Either teach them, have an experienced adult teach them, or enroll them in safe driving courses. Focus on obeying the rules of the road, including the speed limit.

Emphasize the importance of seat belts. Forty-eight percent of teenagers who die in vehicle accidents are not wearing seat belts. If they will be driving other students to school, stress that younger children should be both in the back seat and bucked in, and everyone, of any age, needs to wear a seat belt.

If they are driving with other teenagers, be especially careful. The risk of accidents rises when teens drive with other teens in the car. In fact, the CDC recommends keeping the number of teen passengers to 0 or 1 for the first six months your child has a license.

Caution Teens About Distracted, Drowsy, and Impaired Driving

Distracted driving, or driving while texting, talking on the phone, playing a video game, or just gazing around instead of looking is a growing threat to vehicle safety across the country. In the last year for which statistics are available, almost 3,500 people (of all ages) were killed in distracted driving-related accidents, and 391,000 were injured. Teenagers are believed to be the largest group of distracted drivers.

Drowsy driving is nearly as dangerous. Make sure your teenager gets enough sleep. If they are unable to get enough sleep, consider making them take another form of transportation. Being drowsy slows reaction time and leads to a greater risk of collisions.

Fortunately, many schools have programs concerning the risk of driving under the influence (DUI) of alcohol in high school. Reinforce the message. Don’t drink and drive. Even a single drink can raise the risk of a motor vehicle accident.

If your school doesn’t have such a program, discuss how to avoid drinking and driving with your teenager. If they are going to a party, they should either not drink or choose a designated driver.

When You Need a Car Accident Lawyer in the Los Angeles Area

It’s imperative to stress the importance of safe driving to your teenager. But the sad fact is, hundreds of car accidents happen in southern California every day.

If you or a loved one is hurt or killed in a car accident, call the Salamati Law Firm today. We are experienced Los Angeles car accident lawyers. Your case will be reviewed by seasoned professionals and there is no charge to you for an initial consultation.

Additional Resources:

  1. National Safety Council. Back to School Safety Checklist. https://www.nsc.org/home-safety/seasonal-safety/back-to-school.
  2. U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Teen Drivers: Get the Facts. https://www.cdc.gov/motorvehiclesafety/teen_drivers/teendrivers_factsheet.html
  3. U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Parents Are the Key to Safe Teen Drivers. Eight Danger Zones. https://www.cdc.gov/parentsarethekey/danger/index.html
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What Evidence Do You Need in a Slip and Fall Case?

September 7, 2018 Slip Trip and Fall

Every year, thousands of people are injured in accidents where they slip and fall due to the negligence of another

caution wet floor

Every year, thousands of people are injured in accidents where they slip and fall due to the negligence of another party. You might slip on a slick surface in a store or office building, because no one has cleaned up rain water or the shattered glass and liquid from another customer’s dropped purchase — or any one of the multiple things that cause a slip and fall.

As a result, you might be facing mounting medical bills, time lost from work, and more.

You might be entitled to damages as a result of your injuries from a slip and fall accident. But courts and juries, of course, need evidence. A slip and fall lawyer in Los Angeles will be crucial to making your case.

Evidence Needed for a Slip and Fall Accident Claim

Briefly, you need evidence that you were injured, evidence of the nature of the injuries, and evidence that the conditions were dangerous due to negligence, and that it wasn’t simply your own carelessness or actions.

Negligence means that action that should have been taken to make property safe to walk on wasn’t taken. Both businesses and private property owners must, under the law, exercise reasonable care to maintain their premises so that conditions are safe. If something happens that may make premises unsafe, such as a broken sidewalk or ice, property owners must take action to make it safe as soon as they know about it. That includes fixing their property, getting rid of ice, and putting warning signs around any unsafe areas.

Here’s the evidence you need in a slip and fall, and how to obtain it.

1. Proof of injury

There are several ways to obtain proof of your injury.

First, see a physician right away. If your arm or wrist hurts, for example, they could be broken. Tell your doctor clearly what happened. If you do make a medical claim, the doctor’s records and recommendations for treatment can be part of the evidence.

Be sure to keep records of the bills and any other treatment bills, such as physical therapy or medication.

Second, take multiple pictures of your injuries. Remember, you can say you were bruised or had gashes on your arm, but these will go away. You need pictures of them when they were fresh. Use your cell phones camera if you have it, or a friend’s camera.

Third, report the incident. If it occurs in a business, talk to the manager in charge or the owner before you leave, if possible. If there is no manager available, call the owner as soon as possible after the accident.

2. Proof of Dangerous Conditions

Second, you also need proof of dangerous conditions.

For this, too, your camera is your friend. Take pictures of the scene from every angle. Was liquid spilled or conditions icy? Make sure everyone who wasn’t there can see the conditions.

Second, a report to the owner or manager is needed for this as well.

Third, if you can’t find an owner or manager, and the dangerous area is a public hazard, consider calling the police. A broken sidewalk or un-shoveled ice, for example, could imperil many people. They will make a police report, which your personal injury lawyer can use for evidence.

Fourth, if there are witnesses to your accident, talk to them, get their contact information, and take notes on what they say.

When You Need an Experienced Slip and Fall Attorney in Los Angeles

Were you or a loved one injured in a slip and fall accident in southern California? The Salamati Law Firm is experienced and aggressive in premises liability cases. Call us today for a free consultation and speak with a seasoned Los Angeles personal injury attorney.

Additional Resources:

  1. National Restaurant Association. Don’t Trip Up: Preventing Slips and Falls. https://www.restaurant.org/Manage-My-Restaurant/Operations/Back-of-House/Dont-trip-up-Preventing-slips-and-falls
  2. National Safety Council. Slip, Trip and Fall Prevention Training. https://www.nsc.org/safety-training/workplace/slips-trips-and-falls
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Car Accidents and Concussions: What You Need to Know

August 17, 2018 Auto Accidents, Brain Injuries

Concussions are serious head injuries that can cause multiple symptoms and deterioration in the brain. Concussions have been in the

head injury after car accident

Concussions are serious head injuries that can cause multiple symptoms and deterioration in the brain. Concussions have been in the news a lot lately, especially in regard to the danger they pose to youth and adults who play sports. But many may not realize how frequent concussions (and TBI, or traumatic brain injuries) are in car accidents.

Concussions Are a Leading Cause of Emergency Room Visits

According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, vehicle accidents were the #3 cause of emergency department visits related to TBIs. Falls were the #1 cause and being struck by an object was #2. Fourteen percent of these visits, hospitalizations, and fatalities related to TBIs stemmed from vehicle accidents.

TBIs cause approximately 50,000 deaths annually, and 17% of them arise after car accidents.

Multiple Symptoms Can Indicate Concussion

It’s also important to realize that multiple symptoms can indicate a concussion. Many people believe that you have to be knocked unconscious to have a concussion. That’s simply not true.

It helps to know how a concussion occurs. It is caused by your brain rocking back and forth within your cranium. The CDC notes that a direct head impact can certainly cause this, as can being jostled. In other words, the kind of car accident that causes you to be jostled back and forth can cause a concussion, whether you hit your head or become unconscious or not.

The symptoms of a concussion can be oriented around the head, such as headache, confusion, or disorientation. Memory or concentration may feel impacted in the wake of a concussion. Your pupils may be dilated or your vision might be blurry. You may experience ringing in your ears (tinnitus).

But some concussion symptoms are not centered around the head. Drowsiness and/or fatigue, nausea, vomiting, difficulty sleeping, light and/or noise sensitivity, and mood changes can all be signs of a concussion as well.

The symptoms of a concussion may not manifest immediately. People who have been in a car accident should be vigilant about monitoring themselves for symptoms of a concussion.

See a Doctor After an Accident

Because concussions are so frequent after a vehicle accident in southern California, it needs to be standard practice to see a doctor as soon as possible after an accident occurs.

A doctor can thoroughly assess you or your loved one who has been in an accident for symptoms of a concussion. They check for pupil dilation, for example, and check for other symptoms.

These symptoms may not manifest immediately. If you or a loved one has been in a car accident, being aware and monitoring possible symptoms is  crucial.

Concussion After a Car Accident in Los Angeles? Call Sean Salamati

Have you or a loved on been in a car accident in the Los Angeles area? If you need legal advice, whether it concerns a possible TBI or not, contact Los Angeles personal injury lawyer Sean Salamati today.

Our investigators will find the facts of the accident and what caused any harm done to you or a loved one. We fight for justice. An initial consultation occurs at no cost to you.

Additional “Car Accident Concussion” Resources:

  1. United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Heads Up. Brain Injury Basics. Recovery from Concussion. https://www.cdc.gov/headsup/basics/concussion_recovery.html
  2. United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Traumatic Brain Injury & Concussion. Basic Information. TBI: Get the Facts. https://www.cdc.gov/traumaticbraininjury/get_the_facts.html
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DUI Deaths: Can the Bar That Sold the Alcohol Be Held Liable?

August 7, 2018 Auto Accidents

Every year, hundreds of innocent people are killed on California’s roads by intoxicated drivers.  According to CA traffic statistics, alcohol-impaired

Every year, hundreds of innocent people are killed on California’s roads by intoxicated drivers.  According to CA traffic statistics, alcohol-impaired accident fatalities increased to 1,059 in 2017.  When it comes to seeking justice in DUI deaths, can the bar that sold alcohol to the driver be held liable for damages?

Dram Shop Laws

A dram shop law is a statutory provision that holds a bar or business establishment liable for selling alcohol to an intoxicated patron who causes injury or death as a result of their drunken state. At present, 30 U.S. states have comprehensive dram shop laws that allow liquor stores, bars or restaurants that serve alcoholic beverages to be sued for damages in such cases.

California is among a handful of states that limits civil liability under dram shop laws. Civil Code Section 1714 affords protections for bar owners and other business establishments from liability in situations where a patron drinks alcohol at their premises, leaves and subsequently injures or kills another person in a drunk driving accident.

Civil Code 1714 mandates: “Everyone is responsible, not only for the result of his or her willful acts, but also for an injury occasioned to another by his or her want of ordinary care…the furnishing of alcoholic beverages is not the proximate cause of injuries resulting from intoxication, but rather the consumption of alcoholic beverages is the proximate cause of injuries inflicted upon another by an intoxicated person.”

While a bar owner may not be charged with a felony or sued for civil damages under California dram shop provisions, the bar owner can face misdemeanor charges, fines and possible jail time.

The reasoning behind this legislation is that it can be challenging to determine who is to blame if a drunk person injures another in an auto accident after leaving a bar or other establishment, since strict liability infers that the bar was directly responsible simply by serving alcohol. In other words, the consumption of alcohol, not the serving of it, is the proximate cause of the accident.

Liability for serving alcohol to a minor in California

California dram shop law does have one notable exception to this civil immunity. If a bar, restaurant or other commercial purveyor serves alcohol to a minor who is obviously inebriated at the time of service, they can be sued for any resulting injury or death caused by this individual.

Consequently, any club, bar, concert venue or establishment can be held liable for wrongful death or personal injury if they served alcohol to a person under the age of 21 who was visibly drunk and later caused an accident that killed or injured another.

Los Angeles DUI accident attorney

If you have questions about dram shop laws in California or need experienced representation from a car accident attorney Los Angeles trusts, contact the Salamati Law Firm for a free, private consultation.

Additional Resources on California DUI Deaths:

  1. ABC California, ENFORCEMENT AND VIOIATIONS https://www.abc.ca.gov/questions/enforcement_faq1.html
  2. National Conference of State Legislatures, AM SHOP CIVIL LIABILITY AND CRIMINAL PENALTY STATE STATUTES http://www.ncsl.org/research/financial-services-and-commerce/dram-shop-liability-state-statutes.aspx
  3. OTS California, 2017 Annual Report https://www.ots.ca.gov/Media_and_Research/Publications_and_Reports/doc/CA_OTS_2017_Annual_Report.pdf
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Lack of Staffing in Nursing Homes Affects Resident Care

August 6, 2018 Elder Abuse

Recent federal data suggests that most nursing homes had fewer workers on staff than they had self-reported to federal agencies.

senior woman in nursing home clasped hand

Recent federal data suggests that most nursing homes had fewer workers on staff than they had self-reported to federal agencies. The news confirms the suspicions of many residents of long-term care facilities and their family members and puts residents at risk.

Data shows nursing homes overstate staffing

The recent data comes from an analysis by Kaiser Health News, which reviewed daily staffing reports from 14,000 nursing homes, which in the past had been unavailable but which are now being provided in accordance with requirements under the Affordable Care Act of 2010. The review indicates that many nursing homes’ ratings under the government’s five-star rating program, which is based on self-reported data, often exaggerated the level of staffing.

Not only does the analysis show that the nursing home staffing numbers differ from what facilities represented to the government, but in many cases they fell below the minimum required. Medicare does not set a minimum ratio of staff to residents, but it does require that each facility have a registered nurse present at least eight hours per day, and a licensed nurse present at all times. Even facilities that Medicare has granted high ratings for staffing levels fell short on meeting these requirements. In just the last three months of 2017, one out of every four nursing homes did not have a nurse on staff for at least one day.

Pitfalls of short staffing in nursing facilities

Though Medicare has rejected pleas that it set minimum staffing ratios, federal data shows that one out of every eight facilities has been cited for inadequate staffing. Industry observers point out that when there is inadequate staff, overworked employees need to focus on immediate tasks like feeding residents, while foregoing other necessary but seemingly less pressing tasks like moving residents to prevent bedsores. Unsurprisingly, residents in short-handed nursing homes are more likely to suffer complications like bedsores, infections, malnutrition, dehydration, weight loss, and pneumonia.

Under staffing has been such a big problem in some California nursing homes that residents in Cupertino are taking action. Last June, a class action lawsuit was filed on behalf of Robert Barbendel against Cupertino Healthcare & Wellness Center, alleging that the chain of over a dozen nursing and rehabilitation facilities intentionally violates laws by admitting new residents without informing them that there is inadequate staff to care for them. The complaint alleges that the nursing facilities under staff in order to net a larger profit.

Holding nursing homes in Southern California accountable

The Cupertino lawsuit is one approach to holding nursing homes accountable for not maintaining safe staff ratios. When residents have been harmed by neglect due to under staffing, they or their loved ones may be entitled to file a lawsuit. If you or a loved one have suffered injuries due to nursing home neglect in California, speak with a Los Angeles nursing home abuse lawyer at the Salamati Law Firm. If you have concerns about a loved one’s nursing home injuries, call 855-544-0776 today to schedule a free consultation.

Additional nursing home under staffing resources:

  1. New York Times, ‘It’s Almost Like a Ghost Town.’ Most Nursing Homes Overstated Staffing for Years, https://www.nytimes.com/2018/07/07/health/nursing-homes-staffing-medicare.html
  2. Mercury News, Lawsuit accuses Cupertino nursing home of under staffing to increase profit, https://www.mercurynews.com/2018/07/30/lawsuit-accuses-cupertino-nursing-home-of-understaffing-to-increase-profit/
  3. Journal of the National Medical Association, Understaffed Nursing Homes Affecting Patients, https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2594332/pdf/jnma00322-0014b.pdf
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My Car Was Hit While Parked – What Next?

July 31, 2018 Auto Accidents

Few things are as aggravating as coming back to your car, ready to slide in and turn on some music…

using smartphone take photo car crash accident of the damage to the car for accident insuranceFew things are as aggravating as coming back to your car, ready to slide in and turn on some music… and finding your car has been hit.

Seeing someone hit your parked car and drive away as you are walking back to it is equally frustrating.

You shouldn’t limit your responses to swearing and crying, though, understandable as those are. Hitting a parked car needs to be treated the same as with any other accident, with calmness and the gathering of information.

Gather Information and Notify Authorities

Drivers who hit a parked car shouldn’t leave the scene. It’s an accident that has damaged property. If they absolutely must leave, they should leave a note with information on how to get in touch with them, or find out the identity of the car’s owner with a view to contacting them later.

If they can’t do either of these things, they should contact the police, just as they would in an accident where cars were moving.

If no attempt to contact anyone is made, it’s a hit and run accident.

What You Should Do

So what’s next if you see no note or contact information?

First, contact the police. They will come and take down information on what happened. A police accident report ensures that your insurance company will have official notification of the accident and the circumstances.

Second, ask passers-by if they witnessed anyone hitting your vehicle. If possible, it’s a good idea to find the driver. If a witness can give you a description of the car, the driver, or even part of the license plate, it could help. Note, though, that passers-by were not necessarily around when your car was hit.

Third, snap multiple pictures of your car if you can. Many people carry smartphones: use that camera if available. Take pictures from every angle. It gives your insurance carrier an idea of how and from which angle the car was hit, and establishes the extent of the damage.

Pictures can be used in potential claims against the hit-and-run driver, if they can be found.

Fourth, write down the details about where your car was and when you found it. Specific addresses, times, and dates are helpful.

Fifth, after police have finished and you have gathered all information, call your insurance carrier. Call them as soon as possible, and before you leave the scene. Some adjusters will want to take their own pictures and file a report.

An Experienced Car Accident Attorney in Southern California

Finding your car damaged at a parking site is more than annoying. It’s a hit-and-run crime.

If you or a loved one found their car damaged as a result of being hit while it was parked, call the experienced Los Angeles auto accident lawyers at Salamati Law Firm today. Sean Salamati has been obtaining justice in LA car accidents for years. Let him put his experience to work for you.

Additional Resources:

  1. Hitting a parked car: essential next steps. Insurance.com. August 2, 2017. https://www.insurance.com/auto-insurance/parked-car-insurance.html
  2. Tips for Handling A Hit And Run Driver Claim. DMV.org. https://www.dmv.org/tips-for-handling-a-hit-and-run-driver-claim.php
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July 27, 2018 Brain Injuries

Traumatic brain injury (TBI) leaves more than just a physical effect. Those who suffer a moderate or severe TBI often

power of mind headTraumatic brain injury (TBI) leaves more than just a physical effect. Those who suffer a moderate or severe TBI often suffer not just physical impairment but also emotional and cognitive impairments. Modern trends in therapy aim have a holistic effect, helping the patient regain both physical and non-physical abilities.

Appropriate therapy after TBI

The impact of a brain injury will depend on factors such as the degree of impact and location of the brain damage. The most effective treatment is tailored to help the person meet their daily challenges, both at home and at work. Treatment approaches can include:

  • Physical therapy to help regain physical strength, flexibility, and coordination
  • Speech therapy to improve the ability to speak and even swallow, if that ability has been lost. Speech therapy can also include learning to communicate using special devices.
  • Occupational therapy to focus on re-learning how to perform necessary tasks like personal care and hygiene.
  • Vocational rehabilitation helps a person attain the skills needed to return to work and respond to challenges in the workplace.\
  • Cognitive therapy helps the patient improve cognitive skills like memory, perception, attention, judgment, and planning.
  • Psychological counseling addresses the emotional aspects of a brain injury, helping the person to cope and address work and relationship effects.

TBI patients find therapeutic value in creative outlets

TBI can lead to depression and other mental health issues that are, unfortunately, still stigmatized in society. Psychological therapy suffers from the same stigma and often deters brain injury patients from getting the help they need. But some individuals with brain injuries are finding help from creative therapy.

Drexel University conducted an 8-year study that followed the mental health of 1,500 active-duty service members who participated in art therapy. One of the participants was Chris Stowe, who retired from the Marine Corps in 2016 after suffering from traumatic brain injury sustained as a bomb technician. Stowe experienced anxiety, depression, and post-traumatic stress disorder but was hesitant to seek treatment. He now sees the value in it and runs a weekly glass-blowing workshop as art therapy for service members and veterans.

Creative therapy is now being incorporated around the world. For instance, the Scottish Head Injuries Musical Support Group is a theater group in Scotland made up entirely of individuals who have a TBI. The group gives members a way to connect with others who understand what they are going through while educating their audience about misunderstood aspects of recovery.

Brain injury therapy in California

The good news for those in LA who have suffered a TBI is that there are many art therapy and other creative therapy options in Los Angeles and throughout Southern California. However, many people face battles with insurance to cover these types of rehabilitation because the damage is not visible to the naked eye.

If you or a loved one have suffered a brain injury and believe someone else is at fault, you may be entitled to compensation, including the cost of rehabilitative therapy. TBI is complex but you can increase your likelihood of success with an experienced Los Angeles traumatic brain injury lawyer on your side. Call the Salamati Law Firm today at 855-544-0776 for a free consultation.

Additional TBI therapy resources:

  1. NCBI, What are the treatments for TBI?, https://www.nichd.nih.gov/health/topics/tbi/conditioninfo/treatment
  2. Philly.com, For service members with traumatic brain injuries, art can be healing, http://www.philly.com/philly/health/how-art-can-reveal-trauma-in-soldiers-recovering-from-traumatic-brain-injury-20180703.html
  3. Largs & Millport News, Remarkable tale from trauma to theatre after brain injury is moving, http://www.largsandmillportnews.com/news/16367650.remarkable-tale-from-trauma-to-theatre-after-brain-injury-is-moving/
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When Is Surgery Necessary for a Neck Injury?

July 20, 2018 Personal Injury Lawsuits

Your neck is a complex structure of spinal bones, joints, tendons, ligaments, muscles, and nerves. Any one of those components

Doctor checking neck brace of his patient in medical office

Your neck is a complex structure of spinal bones, joints, tendons, ligaments, muscles, and nerves. Any one of those components can sustain damage in a fall or a motor vehicle accident, leading to severe acute or perhaps even chronic pain. And in some cases, patients need ongoing medical interventions, which may occasionally include surgery. The decision to have surgery is not one to make lightly. In addition to the practical considerations (medical costs, hospitalization, and lost time at work), there are potential health and safety risks associated with every surgery. Only a qualified surgeon can tell you if surgery might be a good option for you.

When your symptoms are debilitating

Neck injuries can range from mild to severe. If you suffer from mild to moderate symptoms, you might not be a good candidate for surgery. Be specific when describing your symptoms to your doctor. Your doctor may find it helpful to know if you generally have a low or high pain tolerance.

Another consideration is the extent to which your symptoms interfere with your daily activities. Tell your doctor if you’re unable to work, perform self-care tasks, do tasks around the house, or play with your kids or grandkids.

When you’ve already tried conservative treatment options

Surgery is almost always considered a last resort option. Talk to your doctor about the treatments you’ve already tried. Most patients with moderate to severe neck injuries try over-the-counter or prescription-strength pain relievers and anti-inflammatories, heat and cold therapy, and gentle stretching. If you haven’t yet worked with a physical therapist, your doctor may ask you to schedule some sessions before considering surgery. Chiropractic care can also be very helpful for neck injuries, particularly whiplash.

When there is an identified anatomical cause of your pain

Before determining whether you’re a good candidate for neck surgery, your doctor will ask you to undergo some imaging studies. They may include x-rays and a magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scan. One of the things your doctor will look for is whether there is an anatomical cause of your symptoms. If so, then you may benefit from surgery. For example, you may have suffered disc herniation during the accident. In this case, the surgeon may remove the herniated portion of the disc to relieve your symptoms.

When is it time to pursue a personal injury claim in Los Angeles, CA?

You may be eligible to file a personal injury claim if your neck injury was caused by someone else’s negligence, recklessness, or intentional actions. Car accidents, truck accidents, and motorcycle crashes are all common causes of neck injuries, as are slip and fall incidents. In all of these types of accidents, there’s a possibility that someone else may be held accountable for your injury.

There is a deadline to filing a neck injury lawsuit, so talk with a Los Angeles personal injury lawyer right away. Sean Salamati has served residents of LA and throughout southern California for two decades. Our firm takes on complex cases, and we have a long track record of successful legal advocacy services. Call us today for your free consultation at 855-544-0776. We can improve your chances of recovering compensation for your missed time at work, medical expenses, and poor quality of life because of your neck injury.

Additional resources for neck injury patients

  1. Everyday Health, When Surgery Is Needed for Neck Pain, https://www.everydayhealth.com/pain-management/neck-pain/surgery.aspx
  2. WebMD, What Surgeries Help with Neck Pain? https://www.webmd.com/pain-management/surgeries-neck-pain#1
  3. Spine Universe, Cervical Spine Surgery: Will You Need Surgery for Your Neck Pain? https://www.spineuniverse.com/conditions/neck-pain/cervical-spine-surgery-will-you-need-surgery-your-neck-pain
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July 13, 2018 Motorcycle Accidents

California is the top state when it comes to motorcyclists. According to World Atlas, there are approximately 800,000 motorcycles registered

Motorcycle couple holding helmets in hands on the road

California is the top state when it comes to motorcyclists. According to World Atlas, there are approximately 800,000 motorcycles registered here – at least 200,000 more than in any other state. For bikers and other motorists, this means accidents are more common and the CA legislature has adopted laws to minimize damage.

Under California law, anyone riding a motorcycle must wear a helmet. What happens if you were not in compliance with the state helmet law when you were injured in a motorcycle crash? It depends on the circumstances.

Recovering damages after a motorcycle accident

Those who are injured by another person’s negligence are entitled to receive compensation for their injuries. This means if you were operating a motorcycle and were struck by the negligent driver of another vehicle, that driver would likely be liable for your injuries. However, the amount that you are allowed to recover can be reduced in proportion to your own negligence.

If you suffered a head injury in a motorcycle crash in which you were not wearing a helmet, the other driver may be able to argue that the injury would have been prevented if only you had complied with the helmet law. On the other hand, if your injuries were strictly to limbs or other parts of your body that do not affect your head or neck, a helmet still would not have kept you safe so there may not be a reduction in recovery.

It is not easy to guess what your chances of recovery will be in a personal injury lawsuit. Instead, speak with an experienced attorney who handles the specific type of case in order to receive an informed opinion.

Traumatic brain injuries caused by motorcycle accidents

Traumatic brain injury (TBI) occurs when someone experiences a bump or blow to the head that causes an internal injury. TBIs are the leading cause of accidental deaths and motorcycle accidents are the number 2 cause of TBIs in the United States. Sadly, according to national statistics, more than half of all motorcyclists who are admitted to the emergency room with a TBI do not survive the accident.

In some cases, a non-fatal TBI is immediately apparent, but in others it can go undetected while still causing impairment. Additionally, many TBI victims do not follow through with aftercare, increasing the likelihood of complications.

Recover for a motorcycle accident in Los Angeles

A TBI can cost a victim multiple times over, from the initial medical bills to lost wages. When it can be shown that the injuries were caused by someone else’s negligence, that person may be liable under California law.

If you suffered a TBI or other injury in a motorcycle accident, regardless of whether you were wearing a helmet, speak with a Los Angeles motorcycle accident lawyer to find out about your rights. Attorney Sean Salamati fights for the rights of accident victims throughout Southern California and can help you understand your legal options. Call today to schedule a free confidential consultation.

Additional motorcycle accident resources:

  1. California Legislative Information, California Vehicle Code Section 27803, https://leginfo.legislature.ca.gov/faces/codes_displayText.xhtml?lawCode=VEH&division=12.&title=&part=&chapter=5.&article=7.
  2. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Traumatic Brain Injury & Concussion, https://www.cdc.gov/traumaticbraininjury/
  3. World Atlas, The Number of Motorcycles by State, https://www.worldatlas.com/articles/who-rides-the-most-motorcycles-in-the-us.html
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How to Choose the Best Motorcycle for Seniors

July 11, 2018 Motorcycle Accidents

As Baby Boomers approach retirement age, the average age of motorcycle riders has risen. In 2001, the average age of

Motorcycle headlight in perspective Close up photoAs Baby Boomers approach retirement age, the average age of motorcycle riders has risen. In 2001, the average age of American bikers was 40. By 2010, the average age had climbed to 49. But it is not just that the biker population is aging – in 2009, more than 10% of new riders were over the age of 50. It is important for seniors to buy the right bike for them in order to stay safe on our California roads.

Seniors flocking to motorcycles

A couple extra decades of life experienced comes with many advantages – many new riders are retired professionals and others who find they finally have the time and money to invest in a quality bike. And of course, age brings maturity and focus.

Unfortunately, age also increases the likelihood of injury, as well as healing time. Older riders need to take these factors into account when choosing a motorcycle.

Seniors are more likely to be seriously injured in motorcycle accidents

According to emergency room doctors, seniors are more likely to be seriously injured or die in a bike crash compared to younger riders and the numbers have been rising. For example, from 1996 to 2005, the proportion of bikers over the age of 40 involved in crashes rose from 28% to about 50%. Riders in the 50-59 age group have been the fastest-growing group to suffer motorcycle injuries. Notably, helmet and alcohol usage were consistent across age groups.

Some of the reasons include:

  • Decreased reaction time
  • Visual impairment
  • Balance issues
  • Loss in bone strength
  • Reduction in brain size

Choosing a motorcycle as a senior

The first rule for anyone choosing a motorcycle is to put safety first. The surest way to do this is to choose a bike for your size and experience.

Some of the factors to consider include:

  • Your height and weight. Remember these may have changed over the years. Whatever your current stats are, you need to be able to reach all controls and put at least one foot on the ground when stopped.
  • Ability to control a heavy bike. As you rack up birthdays, it will likely become more difficult to maneuver a large bike. Consider a lighter weight in order to maintain control of your bike on the road.
  • Experience level. Newer riders may have a better experience with a lighter bike while learning to ride. For more experienced riders, larger touring bikes tend to be more comfortable.
  • Where and how you plan to ride. Take an honest assessment of where you think you will ride. Cities? Recreational trails? Long distances on the highway? There are bikes suitable for each of these but they may not all be right for you.

Speak with a Los Angeles motorcycle attorney

Preparing for a safe ride is the first step to preventing a motorcycle accident. If you are injured in an accident, speak with LA motorcycle accident lawyer Sean Salamati as soon as possible. Sean is dedicated to serving personal injury victims throughout Southern California. Call today to schedule a free and confidential consultation.

Additional resources for choosing a motorcycle:

  1. AARP, How to Choose the Right Motorcycle, https://www.aarp.org/entertainment/arts-leisure/info-05-2011/motorcycles-and-rides.html
  2. Futurity, Senior road warriors losing the safety battle, https://www.futurity.org/senior-road-warriors-losing-the-safety-battle/
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