Auto Accident

Holding Off-Duty Officers Liable in a Norfolk Car Accident

by Keith Adkins | April 27th, 2015

When a car accident occurs due to another person’s negligence, the responsible party or their insurer is typically expected to cover the expenses and damages; however, the Norfolk car accident attorneys with Lowell Stanley Injury Lawyers point out that determining liability for a crash isn’t always a cut and dry matter.

Take the case of a local woman who says her car was totaled in a collision that occurred last October at the corner of Granby Street and Little Creek Road in Ward’s Corner. According to an article from WAVY 10 News, the woman says a police officer directing traffic along Granby in a construction zone waived her vehicle through the crossing; however, another officer directing traffic on Little Creek Road instructed a vehicle to pass through the intersection at the same time, causing the two vehicles to collide.

The woman states the car was totaled and she filed an insurance claim. Her insurer wouldn’t cover the full cost of the loan—only the value of the vehicle— leaving the victim to foot the bill for $3,000. She then contacted the District Attorney, claiming the city was responsible for the cost; however, the DA denied the city’s liability, saying the officers were off-duty at the time of the crash and were employed by a company working at the site.

Now, the woman is battling with the paving company who employed the officers in an effort to have the expenses covered.

Lowell Stanley Injury Lawyers and our staff understand how difficult dealing with car insurance companies can be and urge you not to fight the battle alone. Give us a call anytime at (757) 459-CASH to speak with a member of our legal team about a crash you have had or any questions you may have regarding your legal rights to compensation.

 

 

Norfolk Car Accident Attorneys Discuss Battle Against Distracted Driving in Virginia

by Keith Adkins | April 20th, 2015

Distracted driving has become a major issue on the roadways of Virginia in recent years. A study conducted by the Virginia Tech Transportation Institute shows that 80 percent of all crashes and 65 percent of near-crashes are the result of a driver’s inattention within three seconds of the accident occurring.

Officials and many organizations in the state are working to keep inattentive drivers off the road through several different campaigns and events. The Norfolk car accident attorneys at Lowell Stanley Injury Lawyers points out that one of those programs uses roadside “monsters” to persuade motorists to put the phone down.

The massive creatures were constructed using traffic barrels, cones, and other equipment typically found at a roadside construction site. The “monsters” are then placed next to the road as a reminder to drivers not to talk on the phone or text while traveling.

The Commonwealth of Virginia has also declared April as Distracted Driving Awareness Month. As part of the campaign, the organization Drive Smart Virginia is asking motorists to sign a pledge promising not to drive distracted.

The Norfolk personal injury lawyers with Lowell Stanley Injury Lawyers remind Virginians there are other ways you can prevent yourself from becoming a distracted driver, including:

  • Make a Plan– Create a schedule that allows you enough time to get where you’re going without needing to multitask behind the wheel. Also, know the route you plan to travel to your destination before the vehicle moves.
  • Concentrate– Eliminate the most obvious distractions—like cellphones, food, drink, or music—before driving. Once the car is in motion, be sure to focus on the road rather than your surroundings.
  • Pull Over– If you must take a phone call, email, or text, be sure to pull over at the next safe location before doing so.

We hope these tips help to keep you and your loved ones safe.

Norfolk Car Accident Attorneys Discuss Upcoming National Work Zone Awareness Week

by Keith Adkins | March 23rd, 2015

Highway traffic collisions are dangerous for anyone who is involved, but especially for road crews who may be working in the area where an accident occurs. In Virginia alone, there were more than 3,000 work zone accidents in 2012. Those crashes resulted in 1,500 injuries and 13 fatalities.

To help educate the public about the dangers of work zone accidents, the Norfolk car accident attorneys with Lowell Stanley Injury Lawyers explain that this week has been named “National Work Zone Awareness Week”.

As part of the event, the Virginia Department of Transportation has announced it will be doing its part to raise awareness about the issue of work zone safety by holding a vigil at the state’s VDOT Worker’s Memorial. According to WAVY 10 News, the memorial is located along I-64, near the town of Afton Mountain. The vigil will feature several speakers discussing the importance of work zone safety as a way to remember fallen workers.

For those who are unable to attend, it’s important to remember that the best way to promote work zone safety is to practice work zone safety. This means slowing down in all posted construction and work zones. It’s also important to allow yourself plenty of time to stop in work zone traffic by not following other vehicles too closely and avoiding distractions at all costs.

At Lowell Stanley Injury Lawyers, we’ve seen the devastating results motor vehicle crashes in work zones can have. That’s why our Norfolk personal injury lawyers are hopeful National Work Zone Safety Week will effectively raise awareness about this very serious highway danger.

Tips for Staying Safe and Avoiding a Norfolk Car Accident During Winter Storm Octavia

by Keith Adkins | February 17th, 2015

Winter weather has descended on Norfolk and coastal Virginia. That’s why the Norfolk personal injury lawyers with Lowell Stanley Injury Lawyers would like to let you know about several resources that will be available, as well as offer several tips to help keep you and your loved ones safe.

The Virginia Department of Transportation has prepared the roads for ice and snow, but this often isn’t enough to prevent a Norfolk car accident from occurring. Most experts advise drivers to stay off the roads during winter weather, but for those who must travel, consider following the safety tips that are being provided by WAVY 10 News.

Even if you don’t leave your home, you may still be at risk of dangers from the storm—like losing power and heat. If you lose your heat and power source, it may be important to know where your local shelters are located. In Norfolk, Maury High School will be open from 7A.M. until 7:30 P.M. as a safe place to stop in and get warm. Virginia Beach’s winter shelter program will be in full swing as well.

Lowell Stanley and his team of Norfolk personal injury lawyers are aware of the risks and dangers winter weather can pose and we are hopeful this information helps to keep you and your loved one’s safe and warm during winter storm Octavia.

Changes to Reckless Driving Law Could Contribute to Virginia Car Accidents

by Keith Adkins | January 26th, 2015

Speed is one of the leading causes of motor vehicle collisions today—especially in Virginia. Data from the Department of Motor Vehicles shows that in 2012, the commonwealth reported 14,299 people were injured and another 313 lost their lives as the result of a Virginia car accident.

Despite these numbers, legislators in Virginia have advanced a bill that would loosen the penalties for speed-related traffic law violations. On Monday, January 19, a subcommittee consisting of lawmakers from the state House of Representatives approved HB1317, which would increase the limit for a reckless driving charge from 80 MPH to 85 MPH.

According to The Virginian-Pilot, those in favor of the reform say it isn’t fair that an individual caught driving 81 MPH on the interstate can face a reckless driving charge, while an individual driving 55 MPH in a 35 MPH zone would not. Individuals who are against the changes say the lower speed limit for reckless driving acts as a deterrent to motorists who may otherwise choose to speed.

The bill must now receive approval from the full committee before making its way to the floor for a vote.

Lawmakers are also hoping to improve highway safety by passing a law that would make it illegal to follow non-motorized vehicles, such as bicycles, too closely.

The Norfolk personal injury attorneys with Lowell Stanley Injury Lawyers recognize the importance of always striving to improve highway safety. Thats why we’re hopeful lawmakers will work to ensure protecting Virginia’s motorists remains a top priority.

Distracted Driving a Leading Cause of Car Accidents

by Keith Adkins | January 19th, 2015

There are countless contributing factors that can come into play in a motor vehicle collision, but one of the most common causes of car accidents today is distracted driving. In fact, some research shows as many as 8 out of 10 crashes that occur in the commonwealth of Virginia are the result of driver inattention.

So what is being done to deter Virginia’s drivers from engaging in this deadly behavior? In 2013, lawmakers made texting while driving a primary offense. This means law enforcement can stop a driver if they witness a motorist texting while driving. The behavior is punishable by a $125 ticket for a first offense and a $250 fine and three points on your license for every subsequent offense.

Texting and driving was previously considered a secondary violation, meaning the officer or trooper had to witness the motorist break another law before they could be stopped and ticketed for distracted driving.

This is just the first step, though. An article from The News & Advance points out that talking on a cellphone while driving is still legal, despite evidence showing the behavior is dangerous as well.

At Lowell Stanley Injury Lawyers, we recognize the dangers distracted driving can pose to all motorists. That’s why our Norfolk personal injury lawyers ask that you put your phone down while driving and pledge not to drive while distracted.

If a distracted driver has injured you, it’s also important to know that we can help. Our legal team is standing by to offer you assistance with any questions you may have, and can help begin the legal processes to get you on the road to compensation. Call us anytime at (757) 459-CASH for a free consultation of your case.

How to Avoid Drowsy Driving Car Accidents This Holiday Season

by Keith Adkins | December 29th, 2014

The holidays are upon us and between the long drives to visit family or friends combined with the late night parties that accompany New Year’s Eve, it can be difficult to stay awake while behind the wheel. That’s why many are working to minimize the number of drowsy driving car accidents that occur this holiday season.

One program with a mission to reduce the number of drowsy drivers who are on the road is “Awake At The Wheel.” The campaign is sponsored by the National Healthy Sleep Awareness Project and, according to Sleep Review, works to educate lawmakers and the public on the importance of getting plenty of rest prior to getting behind the wheel of a vehicle. The organization was recently represented at the National Transportation Safety Board’s Highway Safety Forum by President-Elect of the American Academy of Sleep Medicine, Dr. Nathaniel Watson, who offered tips on how drivers can avoid falling asleep at the wheel.

Some of those tips include:

  • Don’t Depend on Gimmicks– Drinking caffeinated beverages, rolling your windows down, or turning up the stereo have all been proven ineffective in preventing motorists from falling asleep.
  • Get Plenty of Rest– Make sure to get at least eight hours of sleep prior to driving. If you find yourself drifting off during your trip, pull over at a safe location to rest.
  • Don’t Drink And Drive– Alcohol tends to make many drivers drowsy on top of impairing judgment, so never get behind the wheel after drinking.

Our team of Norfolk personal injury attorneys here at Lowell Stanley Injury Lawyers hopes these tips help you have happy—and safe—holiday travels!

Virginia Defective Product Lawsuit Alleges Potentially Faulty Guardrails

by Keith Adkins | December 15th, 2014

Manufacturers of products—especially those designed to improve safety—are required to ensure their items don’t present a serious danger to members of the public. Any failure to do so could result in a product being deemed faulty, which could result in costly legal action.

Take the Virginia defective product lawsuit the commonwealth recently filed against Trinity Industries in regards to defective guardrails the company sold. Virginia is one of several states to file such legal action and is among 42 other states and the District of Columbia who have stopped using the guardrails.

According to an article from Bloomberg, the suit claims Trinity failed to inform the state of changes made to the design of the product after the company submitted specifications for the units. The lawsuit alleges that certain parts of the guardrails were shortened, which caused them to fail when struck by vehicles. Instead of properly crumpling and acting as a safety barrier, the lawsuit states that the guardrails impaled vehicles, causing serious injuries to some vehicle occupants.

The suit calls for Trinity to pay to replace the faulty guardrail units. Trinity has stated they are “disappointed” in the move and continue to deny any wrongdoing.

This case could take years to be settled. In the meantime, drivers wonder if they are at risk of being harmed by defective safety equipment. The Norfolk personal injury attorneys with Lowell Stanley Injury Lawyers encourage you to speak with a legal representative if you were injured by a guardrail in a car accident. We can be reached to discuss your case by calling (757) 459-CASH today.

Tips for Avoiding Virginia Car Accidents This Thanksgiving

by Keith Adkins | November 17th, 2014

Thanksgiving is right around the corner and for many Virginians, that means it’s time to hit the road to visit family. Unfortunately, this travel rush can lead to an increase in traffic volume, which can in turn cause a rise in the number of Virginia car accidents.

This year is expected to be no different, considering experts believe the number of motorists on the road for the holiday this year will be even greater than previous year’s totals. According to an article from WAVY 10 News, TripAdvisor polls showed 43 percent of Americans were planning to travel for the Thanksgiving holiday, which was a seven point jump from 2013. The trips aren’t short either, with 60 percent of travelers saying they plan to be in the car for more than 200 miles.

So what can you do to stay safe when traveling for Thanksgiving this year? The Norfolk personal injury attorneys with Lowell Stanley Injury Lawyers suggest:

  • Leave Early- One of the best ways to avoid holiday traffic is to get out of town before everyone else.
  • Plan Ahead- Know the route and traffic conditions along the roads you plan to travel. Also, look for alternate routes in areas where traffic may become congested.
  • Inspect Your Vehicle- It may be wise to have your vehicle serviced and inspected prior to traveling. This can include changing your oil, rotating the tires, replacing wiper blades, and filling up with gas.
  • Obey the Law- Stay safe by buckling up, slowing down, eliminating distractions, and adhering to traffic signals.
  • Be Patient- Road rage is one of the leading causes of accidents today, so remember to breathe deeply and take your time if caught in traffic.

 

Video Aims to Reduce Virginia and Norfolk Bicycle Accident Numbers

by Keith Adkins | October 20th, 2014

The colorful leaves and cooler climates that accompany fall in Virginia make the commonwealth a great place to get out on a bicycle this time of year. Unfortunately, cyclists in Virginia are especially prone to involvement in accidents, especially in Norfolk.

Reports from the Department of Motor Vehicles show that in 2013, there were a total of 739 collisions between vehicles and bicycles. Of those crashes, 45 were a Norfolk bicycle accident.

Numbers like these leave many citizens wondering what is being done to improve bicycle safety in Virginia. It seems as though two bicycle advocacy groups have combined efforts to create a new video that’s focused on educating the public about bicycle safety.

According to an article from WDBJ 7 News, RIDE Solutions and the Blue Ridge Transportation Safety Board created the video. It not only discusses the laws of the road and how they pertain to cyclists, but also what’s needed to prevent bicycle crashes. Roanoke County Police Chief, Howard Hall, explained the message is that motorists need to be more vigilant of their surroundings when driving while cyclists need to recognize their responsibility to obey all traffic laws.

The video is set to debut as part of the Go Outdoors Festival.

The team of Norfolk personal injury attorneys with Lowell Stanley Injury Lawyers recognizes the importance of bicycle safety in our community and we are hopeful the video is successful in spreading the message of accident prevention.