Personal Injury Articles for the Injured of NJ

SELF DRIVE Act faces Senate Vote to Approve Autonomous Vehicles' Higher Safety Standards

Posted by Francis M. Smith on Wed, Oct 11, 2017

By Francis M. Smith

For many years, the technologies being developed to improve automotive safety have tended toward giving more control to the vehicle itself in an effort to reduce accidents caused by human error. Electronic stability control systems, lane departure warnings, and collision avoidance technologies function automatically to avert crashes, but ultimately these driver assistance technologies still leave a human motorist in control of the vehicle. The logical end result of this technology trend, completely autonomous vehicles, have been slow in development, despite the numerous companies working on them. This is partly due to the regulatory limitations that have existed since the idea of self-driving cars became remotely realistic, as lawmakers were understandably cautious about putting the safety of public roads in the hands of a complicated and unproven technology.

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Topics: Motor Vehicle Accidents, driverless cars, self drive act

Does SnapChat Encourage Speeding by enabling Users to “Snap” their speed to friends

Posted by Francis M. Smith on Fri, Oct 06, 2017

By Francis M. Smith

Distracted driving is a major contributor to serious automotive accidents, playing a role in thousands of fatal crashes nationwide each year. In response, law enforcement, insurance companies, and public safety interest groups have enacted campaigns to raise awareness among motorists of the dangers of driving while distracted by other activities such as eating, grooming, or -- most significantly -- the use of mobile devices. Using a cell phone is one of the most common forms of distracted driving, and with the diverse capabilities of today's smartphones, the potential for distraction goes well beyond talking and texting. This problem is compounded when social media companies add features to their platforms that seem specifically designed for use behind the wheel.

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Topics: Motor Vehicle Accidents, Distracted Driving, Speeding

Will Roads be Safer with Self-Driving Cars?

Posted by Francis M. Smith on Wed, Aug 23, 2017

By Francis M. Smith

Since the invention of the automobile, the basic notion of motor vehicle transportation has involved a certain degree of danger; vulnerable human beings ride in large, heavy machines that move at high speeds. Over the years, technological innovations have presented us with ways of reducing that danger. Safety devices such as seat belts, air bags, and vehicle crumple zones help protect our bodies, and driver-assistance features like lane departure warnings, blind spot monitors, and front end collision alerts help drivers avoid accidents by monitoring the vehicle's surroundings and warning the driver of hazards. For the past several years, companies such as Tesla and Google have been working to develop vehicle technology that they hope will make roads even safer: self-driving cars.

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Topics: Motor Vehicle Accidents, driverless cars

Truck Accidents- New Technology Offers Hope - Maybe

Posted by Francis M. Smith on Wed, Aug 09, 2017

By Francis M. Smith

Any motor vehicle accident has the potential to result in devastating injuries or loss of life, but for a number of reasons, crashes involving large commercial trucks are of particular concern for trucking companies and regulatory agencies. Accidents involving these trucks can be particularly deadly, both because of their sheer mass and due to the height difference between a tractor trailer and a consumer sedan. So we can readily understand that technologies that improve the safety of large commercial trucks and help to reduce the risk of accidents are immensely valuable, both for the companies that operate these vehicles and for the motorists who share the road with the trucks.

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Topics: Motor Vehicle Accidents, Truck Accidents

Can Pokemon Go be Made Safer for the Road?

Posted by Francis M. Smith on Mon, Jul 31, 2017

By Francis M. Smith

Since its debut a little over a year ago, Pokemon Go has captured the interest of a huge and surprisingly diverse player base. The ability to encounter and capture animated creatures "in the wild" as you walk around your neighborhood appeals to more than just the children that the colorful characters seem designed for. Many adults who have enjoyed the franchise since its beginning 21 years ago have seized on this new iteration of their favorite game series, while newcomers to the Pokemon world have quickly found themselves drawn into the excitement of "catching them all." As a smartphone app, the game is even more easily able to reach a wide range of potential players, since mobile devices are rarely far from the hands of most Americans.

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Topics: Motor Vehicle Accidents, Distracted Driving, Pedestrian Accidents

Warning: Used Tires May Not be Safe

Posted by Francis M. Smith on Wed, Jul 26, 2017

By Francis M. Smith

Automotive repairs can be very expensive, and often the need to make a repair arises unexpectedly when something goes wrong outside of normal vehicle maintenance schedules. In order to save money, some people look for used parts to replace components that need to be replaced. Many auto repair shops will offer to install used parts to reduce the cost of the repairs they make. Naturally, used parts have already experienced some wear, and can be expected not to last as long as new replacements. With your car's tires, the cost of choosing used replacements can be too high -- old tires can result in deadly crashes.

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Topics: Motor Vehicle Accidents, Car Accidents

Taxis and Ride-Sharing -- Who is Liable for Crashes?

Posted by Francis M. Smith on Wed, Jul 19, 2017

By Francis M. Smith

To most people who are familiar with the transportation phenomenon of ride-sharing, services like Uber and Lyft seem to be very similar to taxi companies, though cheaper and more convenient. This is certainly how the customer experience appears when all goes well, but unfortunately, accidents happen. Car crashes involving an Uber or Lyft driver reveal the substantial differences between these services and traditional cab companies, and any rider should be informed of the risks before deciding how they're going to get home.

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Topics: Motor Vehicle Accidents, NJ Auto Insurance, Car Accidents, insurance company

Will Driverless Car Legislation Come from the States or Federal Government?

Posted by Francis M. Smith on Wed, Mar 08, 2017

By Francis M. Smith

As advances in technology bring driverless cars closer to an everyday reality on our roadways, the laws of the country will need to adapt to keep up with the changes that self-driving vehicles will effect. The question remains, however, as to where those legal changes will take place: within the court system, in state legislatures, or at the federal level? Although in many cases federal regulation can be a strong tool for consumer protection, it can have its drawbacks when dealing with emerging technologies that have a substantial corporate interest. The danger to consumers comes when federal regulations are considered to preempt, or override, stricter state laws and civil liability.

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Topics: Motor Vehicle Accidents, Car Accidents, driverless cars

Driverless Cars and Liability Alternatives

Posted by Francis M. Smith on Mon, Mar 06, 2017

By Francis M. Smith

As automation moves into more and more aspects of everyday life, it generally makes things safer and easier for the people who use the automated products. With respect to potentially dangerous activities like driving a car, automation removes the possibility of driver error from the equation, making the task much safer… until something goes wrong with the programming or the machinery. Auto accidents will not be eliminated with the introduction of driverless cars, so the question remains of how liability will be handled. The most obvious answer is an extension of the current system, with manufacturers carrying strict liability for any harm resulting from negligence or wrongdoing on their part. However, other systems of liability have been suggested (often by auto manufacturers and their advocates, to no one’s surprise) that would place less of a burden of liability on the manufacturers of driverless cars.

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Topics: Motor Vehicle Accidents, Car Accidents, driverless cars

Driverless Cars: Who Will Be Responsible For a Crash? The Driver? The Manufacturer?

Posted by Francis M. Smith on Fri, Mar 03, 2017

By Francis M. Smith

Decades ago, one of the most iconic notions of the future was the idea of flying cars. Today, cars may not be about to take flight, but they may be about to take control of themselves as advances in automation and robotics bring us closer to the reality of self-driving cars on the nation’s roadways. A few early models of “driverless cars” already exist, with more in various stages of development. Many people believe that self-driving vehicles would remove the element of human error from driving and thus make the roads safer – but with technology programmed and constructed by equally fallible humans, it’s impossible to erase error from the equation entirely, which poses the question of what happens when an accident does occur? Who is liable when driverless cars are involved in automotive crashes?

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Topics: Motor Vehicle Accidents, NJ Personal Injury Case, injury compensation, driverless cars

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