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Wisconsin school bus accident lawyersEvery day, parents send their children off to school, expecting them to return home safe and sound. Yet, in November of 2016, as families across the country gave thanks, six families in Tennessee grieved the loss of their children. Their school bus crashed and toppled over before slamming into a tree. The impact was so severe that it nearly split the bus in two. What kind of actions might other parents take, should this ever happen to their child? The following explains.

Driver Negligence Said to Be Major Factor in Crash

Investigators began examining the details of the crash, and what might have caused it, shortly after it occurred. What they found was beyond disturbing. Not only was the driver said to have been on his cellphone at one point during the drive (allegedly caught on camera), he was also said to have been driving at least 20 miles per hour over the speed limit. This could be considered gross negligence on his part. Yet he is not the only one who should be held accountable – at least not in this case.

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Appleton pedestrian accident injury lawyersThe National Highway Traffic Safety Administration states that, on average, there is one pedestrian killed in a crash every two hours, and at least one is injured every eight minutes. What kind of injuries are sustained, though, and can victims expect to recover? More importantly, what recourse do pedestrians and their families have when a crash causes temporary disability, permanent disability, or wrongful death? The following explains.

Most Commonly Sustained Injuries

To determine the injuries most often sustained by pedestrians, the French Institute of Science and Technology for Transport, Development, and Networks, examined medical records and police reports on more than 1.6 million pedestrian accidents. Injuries to the lower extremities were found the be the most common (50 percent of victims), which was then followed by injuries to the head, face, or neck area (38 percent) and injuries to the upper extremities (27 percent). Additionally, the researchers determined that pelvic injuries were far more common for female victims than they were for male victims. However, males often sustained more serious injuries than women.

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Appleton car crash injury lawyersWhile teens make up only a small fraction of the drivers in America, they account for a fairly large percentage of car accidents per year. In fact, data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), shows that, of the 5.25 million accidents occur each year, nearly one million involve teen drivers. Car accidents also happen to be the leading cause of teen death. As such, parents must do all they can to keep their teens safe behind the wheel. The following tips can help.

Limit the Number of Passengers

Distracted driving comes in many forms, including social interaction. For young and less experienced drivers, this extra distraction can mean the difference between an accident and arriving at their destination safely. In fact, data from the American Automobile Association suggests that a teen’s risk of accident increases by 44 percent when there is just one other teen in the vehicle. It doubles when there is a second passenger, and quadruples when there is a third. Because of this, the safest bet might be to restrict your teen from having passengers in the vehicle, at least until they gain more experience.

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Green Bay brain and spine injury lawyersNeurodegenerative diseases, such as brain injuries and spinal injuries, can result in serious, life-long complications. Yet some cases have better outcomes than others. Researchers now believe this may be at least partially attributed to an issue in the brain’s astrocytes - special cells that surround and support neurons.

Understanding the Purpose of Astrocytes

Astrocytes were once thought to be nothing more than packing cells that support neurons. Yet science recently discovered that these star-shaped cells play both a complex and vital role in the nervous system. For example, they typically enhance neuron survival and help shape circuitry inside the brain. Unfortunately, it seems that brain and spinal injuries can turn a certain subtype of these helper cells into toxic cells.

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Appleton car accident lawyersAccording to statistics, speeding is the second leading cause of auto accidents within the United States. Yet many drivers continue to ignore the posted speed limit signs. If you have been injured in a car crash by a speeding driver, learn your rights, including your right to pursue full and fair compensation for your losses.

Speeding is a Serious Problem in the U.S.

Data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) shows that speeding-related crashes cost Americans $40.4 billion each year. That figure does not include the cost of increased insurance premiums for speeding drivers, the fines for tickets, or the increased gas usage. Instead, that figure covers only damage to property, lost wages for injured victims, and other accident-related costs. It should also be noted that speeding was found to be a factor in 31 percent of all fatal car accidents in 2008.

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Appleton truck accident lawyersIn 2014, police reported more than 400,000 large truck accidents to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA). In those crashes, almost 3,500 road users were killed. Another 82,000 suffered non-fatal injuries - some of which were serious and life-altering. To combat this concerning number of injuries and deaths, the FMCSA has implemented a law that requires all trucks be monitored with an electronic logging device, or ELD. This will transfer data on driving times and behavior directly to government agencies. Unsurprisingly, drivers and trucking fleet companies are resisting the change.

Little Time Left to Prepare

The law that mandates the new ELDs be used was passed by Congress in 2012, but did not take effect until December of 2015. Understanding to the difficulties that trucking companies might face in trying to implement the new devices, Congress gave all fleets and drivers two years to comply. That means they have just one year left to complete the transition. Yet, as of November of 2016, only 15 companies had registered devices with the FMCSA.

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Appleton product liability attorneysConsumers have the right to expect that the products they purchase are reasonably safe, and that they will be warned of any potential dangers. Unfortunately, this does not always happen. As a result, victims can be injured or wrongfully killed. A prime example is the recent case against Ikea. Three children were killed when defective furniture tipped over on them. The products never provided any warning. If you or someone you love has faced a similar situation, know and understand your rights, including your right to pursue compensation in a product liability case.

Consumers Have a Right to Expect Products Free from Defect

Before it can be placed on the market for sale or distribution, products must meet certain safety requirements. Further, manufacturers are supposed to perform quality assurance to ensure their products are safe. When they fail to do so, and a victim is injured or wrongfully killed, the company can be held liable. Victims can work to hold them accountable through a product liability lawsuit. This is where Ikea failed. Their dressers, manufactured with a defect that allowed them to tip over, left them liable.

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Wisconsin distracted driving accident lawyerTraffic deaths have increased sharply, drastically, and quickly over the past half-century. Much of the increase can be traced back to cell phone use behind the wheel. Even more concerning is that the rate continues to rise, despite the numerous campaigns, laws, and initiatives. The problem is not that drivers fail to recognize the risk. In fact, studies reveal that most drivers do know that cell phone use is unsafe. The problem is finding a way to actually deter and disconnect them from their devices. California believes they may have the answer, and if you drive in California, traffic laws in that state apply to you.

No Phones Allowed

While most states (46) have provisions in place that prohibit texting while driving, only 14 have laws that explicitly ban the use of cellphones behind the wheel. California is taking it one step further. They are completely banning even touching or handling a cell phone while driving. You cannot check the time. You cannot pull up your map application. You cannot even hold it in your hand. Period. They hope that it will work to reduce their distracted driving problem. Unfortunately, only time will tell.

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Green Bay spinal cord injury lawyersSpinal cord injuries can be scary and devastating to the victim and their family. However, not all mean the person will be paralyzed for life. In fact, spinal injuries are experienced at varying degrees, and some have a better prognosis than others. Learn the basic differences between the two main types of spinal cord injuries, and more about how those variations could impact your personal injury case.

Spinal Cord Injuries (General)

Protected and encompassed within the vertebrae, your spinal cord transfers messages from your brain to the rest of your body. When the protective but bony vertebrae are damaged - crushed, broken, or otherwise compromised - they can cut into or compress the spinal cord and damage it. As a result, messages are no longer able to reach the affected parts of your body. The lower the damage, the further down your body the damage will likely be. Alternatively, injuries higher up on the spinal cord (closer to your head) can cause more widespread loss of sensation, movement, or control.

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Appleton truck accident lawyersIn a perfect world, people would be protected from the neglectful actions of others. Unfortunately, the world is quite far from perfect. In fact, it is often victims who pay the price when unsafe trucks and dangerous drivers mix. If you or someone you love has been injured or killed in a truck accident, the following information can help you understand your rights.

Failure to Maintain Vehicles is a Form of Neglect

Regulated by the Department of Transportation (DOT), the trucking industry must adhere to strict guidelines pertaining to safety and maintenance. This includes truck maintenance. Failure to adhere to these guidelines is a form of neglect - one that victims can use when pursuing compensation for any losses or injuries they experience. Unfortunately, proof of such neglect is often difficult to find. This is why every truck accident victim needs the assistance of an attorney.

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Green Bay car crash lawyerEven after roads have been plowed and treated to melt the snow and ice, road users need to be aware of potential dangers. This is especially true when it comes to the presence of black ice. Often caused by areas that have melted and then refrozen, it is most often an issue in the early morning hours because it is so difficult to see while driving in the dark. It is also one of the most common causes of car crashes in the winter. If one has happened to you or someone you love, the following can help you understand your right to pursue compensation.

Driving in Icy Conditions

While most crashes are due to the fault of a driver, some that relate to inclement weather are unpreventable and unavoidable (unless, of course, you do not drive). Icy conditions - particularly conditions that create black ice - are a prime example. As stated, the best method of preventing such accidents is to avoid driving in the early morning and late night hours. Unfortunately, not everyone has this option. So, if you must drive, go slower than normal, watch overpasses and bridges, and ensure your vehicle is winter-ready.

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Green Bay auto accident lawyersParents often go to great lengths to protect their children. What happens, though, when the negligent actions of another cause an automobile accident that results in injury to the child? Do parents have any form of recourse, and if so, what? The following information explains further, and provides details on how to ensure your child’s safety after a crash.

An Ounce of Prevention

While there is little you can do to change the behavior of others, you can reduce your child’s risk of injury by ensuring they are riding safely. Use the correct size and type of car seat for your child, ensure the seat belt is properly secured, and never let your child sit in the front seat. Further, it can help to teach your child why car safety is important. Parents should also lead by example (wearing their own seat belts, not talking on the phone or texting while driving, etc.).

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Green Bay traumatic brain injury lawyersStatistics from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention indicate that at least 1.7 million people suffer from a traumatic brain injury (TBI) each year. The majority of those sufferers (about 1.365 million) are treated and then released to heal. Unfortunately, this healing process can take weeks, and sometimes months. Over that time, the individual may be unable to work or enjoy the activities they normally do. Some claim that yoga can help with the process.

How Yoga May Help with TBI Recovery

Yoga has many touted benefits and has been used as a therapeutic treatment for numerous conditions. Does it really work, though, and can it truly help with traumatic brain injury? One study suggests it may be a possibility. Conducted over the course of eight weeks, the study examined the outcomes of three TBI sufferers who participated in one-on-one yoga. Researchers found that balance, balance confidence, endurance, and lower extremity strength increased in all three of the participants.

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Green Bay auto accident lawyersStatistics from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) indicate that, each year, more over two million people experience an automobile accident injury. While some may heal in a matter of days or weeks without any major medical intervention,  others may experience serious long-term or lifelong complications, including temporary or permanent disability. In such instances, victims may be owed compensation to cover their losses, including their loss of future earnings. Learn more about the most common auto accident injury claims, and how an attorney may be able to improve your chances of receiving a full and fair settlement in your case.

Whiplash and Other Soft Tissue Injuries

Soft tissue injuries are those that cause damage to the body’s connective tissues (muscles, ligaments, and tendons). The most commonly experienced is whiplash - an injury to the muscles and/or tendons in the neck and/or upper back. Many victims who suffer such injuries do heal, but some experience long-term or chronic pain that can make it difficult to work or enjoy their normal, everyday activities. Whiplash is not the only soft tissue injury that victims experience, however. They may also suffer injuries to other muscles, ligaments, or tendons in the body, including those in the lower back, upper back, and shoulders.

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Appleton wrongful death lawyersConstruction workers repair and build our roads, bridges, and buildings. Without them, growth and industry would come to a halt. Yet these workers, who serve as the backbone of our economy, have one of the most dangerous jobs in America. In fact, one in five workplace deaths occur within the construction industry. While workers compensation is available to cover on the job accidents, damages in workers compensation claims are limited.   

If the accident is the fault of a third party (a person or company other than an employer or fellow employee, such as another contractor, a delivery person, a design architect/engineer, or manufacturer), additional claims for damages can be brought against the third party and their liability insurance company.   If someone you love has been a victim in an accident caused by the fault of someone other than the employer or fellow employee, know your rights, particularly your right to pursue fair and just compensation.

Most Common Construction Accidents

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Appleton auto accident lawyersEvery state has its own laws for determining the compensation owed to victims in an automobile accident. In Wisconsin, this is known as comparative negligence. What exactly is comparative negligence, and how might it affect your claim? The following information explains, and provides some key details on how you can effectively pursue the most compensation possible.

What is Negligence?

Before one can understand comparative negligence, one must first understand negligence itself - namely what it is, and what it is not. Negligence is when someone fails to exercise the same amount or level of care that another, reasonable person would use in the same situation. This person does not have to intentionally cause harm. However, there is an element of harm. So, if someone speeding, driving while intoxicated, texting while driving, or has run a stoplight and caused an accident that resulted in injury or death, they may be considered negligent.

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Green-Bay TBI injury lawyersEvery year, about 2.5 million people in America suffer from traumatic brain injury. Most will recover, but some will have lasting complications. A new study reveals that sleep quality could be one of the first indications of whether a victim is recovering or potentially suffering with ongoing complications. The following explains further, and provides some key information on your rights to compensation if negligence played a role in your head injury.

Sleep Patterns and Traumatic Brain Injury

Conducted by the American Academy of Neurology, the recent study examined 30 traumatic brain injury sufferers between the ages of 17 and 58. Most had experienced their injuries in automobile accidents and had been comatose upon their arrival at the hospital. Researchers observed them while they slept and found that they became more alert as sleep quality improved. This suggests it may also be possible that sleep problems could signify ongoing complications from traumatic brain injury.

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Wisconsin car crash injury lawyersWhen winter settles in, and the roads become slick, even the best of drivers can find themselves in a dangerous situation. However, most circumstances are avoidable. Learn how you can best protect your family with some safe winter driving tips, and learn what rights you have if you or someone you love is killed or injured in an automobile crash this winter season.

Always Have a Plan for Unexpected Inclement Weather

It goes without saying that drivers should try to avoid going out if the roads are dangerous, but you cannot always prevent travel in inclement weather. For example, you might go to work in the morning, certain you can make it home before a winter storm hits, but then it hits earlier than expected and you are hit while trying to drive home. Knowing what to do in such a situation can be difficult, but effective preparation and planning can make the decision much easier.

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Green Bay auto accident lawyersAmericans are always on the go, and they often find themselves lacking in sleep. Unfortunately, this can lead to an increased risk of accident, particularly for those that spend a lot of time driving. This is because, after a while, the brain can become distracted and can result in an almost hypnotic like state. Experts refer to this phenomenon as highway hypnosis. What is it, and how might it affect you, even if you do not drive drowsy or for long periods of time? The following explains, and provides some important information for car accident victims.

Drowsy Driving/Highway Hypnosis

A 2005 study from the National Sleep Foundation determined that around 60 percent of all drivers (about 168 million people) drive when they are drowsy. More than one-third of those drivers admitted to falling asleep while behind the wheel, and about four percent of those that dozed off admitted to either experiencing an accident or a near-miss accident while falling asleep behind the wheel.

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Appleton auto accident lawyersWhile some accidents may be caused by uncontrollable factors, such as weather or road conditions, the majority are caused by human error, negligence, or behavior. Some are oversights, such as failing to notice a stop sign. Others are intentional but not intended to cause harm, such as texting while driving. Then there are those actions that may or may not be used to intentionally bring harm to other road users, but are extremely dangerous for everyone. One example of such behavior is aggressive driving, or road rage. If you or someone you love has been injured because of this type of behavior, learn what your rights are and how you can most effectively pursue compensation.

What is Road Rage?

Anyone can become angry or annoyed while behind the wheel of a car, but aggressive driving and road rage take that anger another step. Drivers acting in this way are intentionally trying to intimidate or provoke others. They might be honking their horn because someone sat at a light too long, weaving toward another driver, slamming on their brakes to stop a tailgater, or yelling out their window at someone as they pass by. A far more concerning action is one in which a driver shoots at another because of anger or frustration. Extreme as it sounds, this happens in about 37 percent of all road rage/aggressive driving cases. This is not the only concerning statistic, however.

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Herrling Clark Law Firm Ltd. is located in Appleton, Wisconsin, and serves clients in Fox Valley, Outagamie County, Brown County, Door County, Kewaunee County, Manitowoc County, Sheboygan County, Fond du Lac County, Calumet County, Winnebago County, including Appleton, New London, Clintonville, Neenah, Oshkosh, DePere, Fond du Lac, Sheboygan, Manitowoc, Kewaunee, Sturgeon Bay, Marinette, Neenah, Chilton, Menasha, Shawano, Waupaca, Wausau, and Green Bay, Wisconsin.
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