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Auto Accidents

Practicing “Smart Sleep” Can Prevent Driver Fatigue

By Lipton Law on March 6, 2012 - No comments

Sleepiness and driving can be a dangerous and even deadly combination. Many drivers rely on cold air, loud music, or stimulants like coffee or energy drinks to keep them awake, not realizing that these things don’t help; however, getting adequate, restful sleep does. During National Sleep Awareness Week, March 5-11, the National Sleep Foundation recommends working to improve the quality of your sleep and your family’s sleep by following these tips:

  • Get enough sleep. Most adults need 7 to 9 hours of sleep per night; for children and teens, the numbers can be higher. If you don’t wake up feeling refreshed, consider talking to a doctor about possible conditions like sleep apnea that could be robbing you of your rest.
  • Avoid watching TV or using the computer before bed. Exercise within three hours of bedtime may also make it hard to fall asleep, so get your exercise in well before bedtime.
  • Use your bed only for sleep and intimacy. If you can’t sleep within 15-20 minutes of lying down, get up and go into another room. Read or listen to quiet music until you feel sleepy again, but avoid TV or computer screens and bright lights. Don’t watch the clock – thinking about the time passing while you’re not sleeping often makes insomnia worse.

Driver fatigue is a major cause of accidents, especially among those who drive for a living, like truckers and commercial bus drivers. If you’ve been injured in an accident with a fatigued or distracted driver, the skilled Southfield auto accident attorneys of Lipton Law can help. Call us today at (248) 557-1688 to learn more about your legal rights after an accident occurs.


Michigan’s Graduated Driver Licensing Law Seeks to Give Teens More Road Experience

By Lipton Law on February 23, 2012 - No comments

Older drivers who got their first license in Michigan may remember when our state’s driver licensing program was pretty simple: learn to drive, get learner’s permit, then at age 16, receive a driver’s license.

However, as research mounted showing that inexperience was the number-one threat to drivers under age 19, Michigan joined many other states in implementing a graduated-driver licensing system: a multi-step process designed to give young drivers more practice and more experience before sending them out on their own.

Today, Michigan teens can begin learning to drive at age 14 years, 9 months. After successfully completing a driver’s training course, they must drive on a learner’s permit for at least six months, practicing their skills with a licensed adult in the vehicle for at least 50 hours on the road. Ten of these hours must be driven at night. At age 16, a teen driver may receive a Michigan graduated driver’s license, which allows him or her to drive alone, but prohibits more than one passenger under age 21. A second round of driver’s training is also required. Once the young driver turns 17, he or she may have a full-fledged Michigan driver’s license.

At Lipton Law, our experienced Southfield car accident lawyers are dedicated to helping those injured in car accidents and their families. Our first priority is to serve each of our clients to the fullest extent. If you or someone you love has been hurt in a car accident, call us today at (248) 557-1688 for a free and confidential telephone consultation.


Michigan Police Urge Drivers to Use Caution in Snowy Weather

By Lipton Law on January 25, 2012 - No comments

Michigan had an unseasonably warm winter through the end of 2011. Now that 2012 is here, however, the snowstorms are back – and so are increased risks for accidents, including sliding on snowy, icy, or slushy roads. To help avoid accidents and injuries this winter, police across Michigan are encouraging drivers to use caution, according to a recent article in the Muskegon Chronicle.

Northern Michigan counties, like Muskegon, were hit particularly hard by recent storms, but even communities on the eastern side of the state found themselves buried. When temperatures drop and snowstorms hit, it can become very difficult to see while driving. This increases the risk of an accident – not only with another vehicle, but also with a pedestrian, parked car, or an object like a lamppost, mailbox, or guardrail.

Many Michigan drivers assume that salt, sand, and de-icing chemicals used by state and local road crews will take care of any slippery snow and ice that might cause a crash. However, when temperatures dip too low, salt and chemicals can’t melt snow or ice effectively. The best thing to do for Michigan safe winter driving is slow down and keep extra space between yourself and any vehicles in front of you, according to the Michigan State Police. Even if you slip, you’ll have more room to right your vehicle – and a greater chance of avoiding a crash.

Car accidents can cause serious injuries. If you’ve been involved in a car accident in Michigan, the experienced Southfield car accident injury attorneys at Lipton Law can help you and your loved ones with every stage of the post-accident process, from filing a no-fault insurance claim to seeking compensation, so that you can focus on recovery. For a free and confidential telephone consultation, call us today at (248) 557-1688.


Boy Killed, Girl Injured in Crash on Detroit’s East Side

By Lipton Law on January 12, 2012 - No comments

A two-car crash at Pinewood and Hoover on Detroit’s East Side recently left a two-year-old boy dead and an eight-year-old girl in critical condition, according to a recent news report from My Fox Detroit.

The two children were riding in the family car with their mother when it was hit by another vehicle. That vehicle’s driver, a 62-year-old Detroit-area resident, is being held by police on suspicion of driving under the influence of alcohol (DUI). Police have not released details on the crash, but say that they suspect the older driver was driving drunk when the accident occurred.

The two-year-old lost his life in the crash. The eight-year-old suffered a broken neck and serious brain injuries and is currently in critical condition at a Detroit hospital. The hospital has not released any updates on her condition, but says that swelling in her brain is a serious concern.

According to at least one preliminary police report, it appears that neither of the children was secured in a child safety seat at the time of the crash. Michigan law requires children under 4 to ride in safety seats and children up to age 8 or four feet, nine inches tall to ride in booster seats. There is no word on whether the children were wearing seat belts when the accident occurred.

A serious accident can change the life of a family in an instant. At Lipton Law, our experienced Southfield car accident attorneys are dedicated to helping families through every step of the post-accident process, from dealing with the insurance companies to seeking compensation from anyone whose negligence may have caused injury. Call us today at (248) 557-1688 for a free and confidential discussion of your options after a crash.


Car Accident Injuries Can Be Costly, According to NSC Report

By Lipton Law on December 22, 2011 - No comments

The National Safety Council (NSC) estimates that the costs of unintentional injuries due to car accidents in recent years can be staggering, especially for a person or family with few assets. In its report on the costs of unintentional injuries suffered in car accidents, the NSC breaks down the numbers in detail.

In 2009, the NSC estimated that the average car accident involving property damage created $6,300 in costs. Injuries and disabilities suffered by drivers, passengers, or pedestrians averaged $68,100. And the total economic costs of a person who died as the result of a car accident averaged over $1.2 million.

The NSC’s numbers represent more than just the medical bills an injured person faces after a crash. They also include lost wages, the costs of repairing a damaged vehicle, and “administrative expenses”, like the cost of bus fare until a vehicle is fixed. All of these costs, however, affect those who are involved in accidents, making the NSC’s numbers a better approximation of what these accidents cost than merely looking at medical bills alone.

Not all of these bills are paid out of a driver’s pocket in every case. For instance, no-fault insurance in Michigan and other states often pays the medical bills and other expenses associated with a crash. Similarly, a car accident that happens when the driver or passengers are traveling for work purposes may be covered by workers’ compensation insurance in many states.

At Lipton Law, our experienced MI auto accident injury attorneys are dedicated to helping car accident victims and their families seek the compensation they need, whether it’s by negotiating with an insurance company or filing a case in court. For a free and confidential consultation about your injury case, call Lipton Law today at (248) 557-1688.


Four Tips for Safer Winter Driving

By Lipton Law on December 16, 2011 - No comments

Winter driving in Michigan means snow and ice – and plenty of it. To help get yourself and your passengers safely to your destinations this winter, consider the following four winter driving tips.

  1. Leave space. Cars cannot stop as quickly on snowy, icy, or wet roads as they can on dry ones. Leave extra space when you are following or passing a vehicle, so that you and they will have room to maneuver if a vehicle slips or spins.
  2. Clean off your car. Make sure all your lights – including back-up lights and turn signals – are clear of snow. Cleaning the snow off your car’s roof is also a smart safety move, as it prevents snow from flying off your car in transit and blocking another driver’s view.
  3. Slow down when approaching bridges, overpasses, or shady spots. These areas often remain icy even when the rest of the roads are clear, so use caution until you’re sure there’s no ice on these stretches of road to surprise you.
  4. Do not rely on four-wheel drive or cruise control in snowy or icy weather. Four-wheel drive will not help you stop any faster, and cruise control may cause an accident. Rely on your driving skills and pay careful attention to the road.

Car accidents in Michigan can cause serious injuries, and trying to navigate Michigan’s no-fault insurance laws and other rules after a crash can seem overwhelming. At Lipton Law, our experienced Southfield auto accident injury attorneys are dedicated to helping injured people get the compensation they need, so they have the time and resources they need to heal. To learn more, call Lipton Law today at (248) 557-1688 for a free and confidential consultation.


Graduated Drivers’ Licensing Programs Save Lives

By Lipton Law on December 14, 2011 - No comments

Graduated driver licensing programs, which introduce young drivers to the road in stages, have saved many young driver’s lives, and gains could be as high as 2,000 lives per year, according to a recent article in USA Today.

According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), more teens between ages 16 and 19 die in car accidents each year than from any other injuries. Thousands more teenagers are injured in car accidents.

Currently, every U.S. state has some kind of graduated driver licensing laws. However, proponents of these laws say that if seven key components were enacted in all fifty U.S. states, the number of teen lives saved would increase. Currently, only two states, New York and Delaware, have all seven components in their programs.

The key components of these laws include delaying driver education to age 16 and delaying a full license until at least age 17. In the meantime, drivers would receive multiple driving education classes and be required to fulfill at least 30 practice hours before receiving greater licensing privileges. Young drivers would also be expected to get an intermediate license and would be restricted from carrying passengers, apart from adults helping them learn to drive, until they are 17.

Michigan’s no-fault insurance laws deal with all but the most serious car accidents. When you or someone you love is struggling to recover from injuries, however, these laws and rules can seem overwhelming. At Lipton Law, our experienced Michigan car accident attorneys are dedicated to helping you through every part of the process, from filing a claim to seeking compensation in court. For more information, call us today at (248) 557-1688 for a free and confidential consultation.


Travel Tips to Help Keep Your Thanksgiving Safe

By Lipton Law on November 18, 2011 - No comments

Thanksgiving week is one of the most heavily-traveled weeks of the year, according to the federal U.S. Bureau of Transportation Statistics (BTS). More people travel more miles on the days surrounding Thanksgiving than nearly any other holiday. For this reason, it’s important to keep travel safety tips in mind when hitting the road during the Thanksgiving holidays.

Keep the weather conditions in mind when you drive. If the weather or roadway is icy, snowy, foggy, or rainy, slow down and drive more carefully, keeping a larger distance between you and the vehicle in front of you. Checking the weather forecast and road conditions before you leave can help you plan for the road. Avoid using cruise control unless the roadway is clear and dry, since using cruise control on wet or icy roads can make it easier to lose control of the vehicle.

Avoid distracted driving. Set your cell phone to “silent”, or have a passenger answer it for you if it rings. Passengers can also help you read maps or directions. If you feel tired, pull over or have another licensed driver take over. Never drive after drinking or allow others to drive if they have been drinking.

Careful driving can help prevent serious accidents, but it can’t eliminate all the risks of hitting the road. If you or someone you love has been injured in a crash, the experienced Southfield auto accident lawyers at Lipton Law can help you navigate the Michigan no-fault insurance process or seek any additional forms of compensation to which you may be entitled. For a free and confidential consultation, call us today at (248) 557-1688.


Roundabouts Improve Intersection Safety, but Crashes May Still Occur

By Lipton Law on October 31, 2011 - No comments

Roundabout Car AccidentsRecently, roundabouts have replaced traditional road intersections in many locations in Michigan. Commonly used in Europe, roundabouts keep traffic moving and reduce the risk of accidents by guiding traffic in a circle that moves around and through the intersection, rather than forcing drivers to stop for a light or a signal.

Roundabouts can help reduce the number of serious accidents at intersections both by keeping all the traffic moving in the same direction and by reducing traffic speeds, making it less likely that a high-speed vehicle will cause a crash, according to the Insurance Institute of Highway Safety (IIHS). However, accidents can still occur in roundabouts, so it’s wise to understand the most likely ways crashes can occur. By keeping an eye out for common roundabout accident causes, you can help protect yourself from an accident.

Crashes are more common in multi-lane roundabouts than in single-lane ones, according to the IIHS. The most common types of crashes involve a single car hitting the center island, which is often caused by entering the roundabout too fast. Vehicles rear-ending or side-swiping one another while entering or leaving a roundabout were also common. Even these crashes, however, did not tend to cause as many serious injuries as crashes at traditional intersections.

After a Michigan car accident, you may feel overwhelmed by the requirements of your no-fault insurance and your need to find out what happened. At Lipton Law, our experienced Southfield car accident attorneys can help you handle these and other issues so that you can focus on recovery. For a free and confidential consultation, call us today at (248)557-1688.


Distracted Driving Increases Crash Risks, But Does Banning Cell Phone Use Help?

By Lipton Law on October 24, 2011 - No comments

Ample evidence exists that distracted driving increases the risk of a crash. A study performed at the University of Utah, for example, found that texting while driving decreases a driver’s ability to respond to emergencies as much as if the driver had a blood alcohol concentration of 0.08 percent.

In response to this and other information about texting and cell phone use while driving, many states (including Michigan) have banned texting while driving, and several Michigan counties prohibit handheld cell phone use while driving. However, some research indicates that bans do not help decrease the risks of distracted driving.

Only one study has specifically examined whether texting bans help decrease distracted driving accidents. The study, which focused on handheld cell phone use among commercial truck drivers, found that drivers were more likely to get into an accident in areas where handheld cell phone use was against the law. Researchers believe that the risk may increase if drivers feel they need to hide their cell phone use while driving in order to avoid a ticket.

Researchers stress the need for caution when considering these results, however, since they come from only one study that focused on professional drivers. More research is needed to determine the best way to reduce distracted driving and the crashes it can cause.

Car accidents can cause serious injuries. If you’ve been injured in a car crash and need help dealing with your Michigan no-fault insurance or handling other issues related to your accident, the experienced car accident lawyers in Michigan at Lipton Law can help. For a free and confidential consultation, call us today at (248) 557-1688.