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Nashville Personal Injury Law Blog

Ever wondered how black ice forms and what causes hydroplaning?

Whether you are a Nashville resident or a visitor to our famous music city, winter driving will be risky. Motorists, bikers and pedestrians are vulnerable whenever they venture outside. Rain, sleet, snow and ice often cause crashes with severe physical, mental and financial consequences.

Have you ever wondered how black ice forms, what causes hydroplaning and what does traction control involves? Those are valid questions, and once you understand the science behind these life-threatening hazards, you could increase your chances of staying safe this winter.

Car accidents: Tennessee morning commutes can be deadly

The hours between 6 a.m. and 9 a.m. are often chaotic for travelers. Tennessee highways are typically laden with traffic at such times, and drivers must be on high alert for potential problems on the road. Car accidents often occur, especially when even the most cautious of motorists are unable to safely react in time to avoid collisions when the unexpected happens.

Sadly, a fatal crash occurred at approximately 7:15 a.m. on a recent Monday. Investigators are still working to determine what might have caused a vehicle traveling in a westbound direction to careen out of control into the oncoming lane. Not only did the vehicle hit another car head-on, the sudden collision caused two other cars to wreck as well.

You may seek various damages following an injury-causing crash

A careless driver has just struck your car, and now, you feel at a loss for what to do. Not only is your car damaged, but also, you have suffered physical injuries that will keep you out of commission for a while.

Fortunately, if someone's negligence has caused you to suffer harm in a car accident, you have the right to seek compensation for the damages you have suffered. Here is a look at the multiple kinds of damages you could claim in this situation in Tennessee.

Why should you bear the financial burden for personal injury?

If you are driving along a Tennessee highway and another motorist causes a collision by failing to yield the right-of-way, an otherwise uneventful day might turn into a chaotic series of events that includes you being transported to a local hospital. If you suffer personal injury in a motor vehicle collision accident, it is always best to accept medical care, even if you do not have immediately apparent injuries. Traumatic brain injury, internal organ damage and other issues may not present symptoms for hours, or even days later.

What if you're scheduled for surgery in a Tennessee hospital and the surgeon forgets to remove a surgical instrument from your body or operates on the wrong body part? While such incidents may sound horrific and easily preventable, the fact is these are two of the most common types of surgical errors that occur throughout the country. Just as a motorist refusing to yield may be grounds for an injury claim, medical malpractice is also a legitimate reason to seek financial recovery for losses in court when another party's negligence has resulted in your injury.

Multiple entities may be to blame for a truck accident

When big rigs and passenger cars crash, the occupants of the car are typically the ones who suffer critical injuries or lose their lives. Sharing the Tennessee highways with semis and tractor-trailers is dangerous because an accident can happen in the blink of an eye. Did you know that a large truck could weigh 20 to 30 times more than your car? They are tall, and their ground clearance can be significant enough to allow your vehicle to slide beneath it.

You will not know for how many hours the operator of the truck has been driving. Under federal hours-of-service regulations, drivers must rest after 11 hours of driving, but is this driver in compliance or not?

Truck accidents: The aftermath can be highly stressful

Tennessee highways can be dangerous, as anyone who regularly travels throughout the state can attest. Many high-risk situations result in truck accidents, which are especially tragic when fatalities occur or when children are involved. A recent incident resulted in four deaths, and has left a family not only reeling with grief but also speaking out against highway patrol investigators.

A 34-year-old woman was traveling with her young son, her niece and nephew. At some point, there was a collision between her vehicle and a tractor-trailer. Sadly, no one in the woman's car survived.

A connection between personal injury and hands-free devices?

Most Tennessee motorists carry some type of electronic equipment in their vehicles. Such items might include cellphones, iPods or GPS gadgets. Many people believe that as long as they use hands-free devices, they will be safe from personal injury. Evidence suggests this is not always the case.

Just because someone is not holding a cellphone or other device while driving does not necessarily mean he or she is not distracted. In fact, using hands-free telephone equipment to talk while driving places drivers at risk for cognitive distraction. It is generally impossible to have a coherent conversation without focusing on what is being said, and if the focus is on the conversation, it is not on the road and task of driving -- where it should be.

Will you link these delayed symptoms to your car accident?

Victims of car accidents in Tennessee might find that, even if the crash seems insignificant and there are no broken bones or open wounds, the consequences can be severe. Collisions typically cause whiplash, which often leaves damage that is initially disguised by adrenaline, only to become evident days or weeks later.

The force of the impact, the location of the impact, your position in the car, and whether you wore your seat belt will all affect the severity of your whiplash injuries. Even if you think you escaped the crash without injuries, it is always a good idea to have a medical evaluation, which could detect hidden damage. The sooner you get treatment, the sooner you will heal.

Legal support is often needed after a personal injury occurs

Before this year ends, many Tennessee residents will be injured. Some will be involved in workplace accidents. Others may wind up with serious injuries after car accidents or mishaps on another person's property. In addition to medical attention, it is helpful to speak with an experienced personal injury attorney if another person's negligence was a causal factor in a particular incident.

A moderate to severe injury might prevent you from returning to work right away. In fact, in some accidents, injuries might be so serious that a victim is never able to go back to work due to permanent disabilities. During recovery, medical bills, your mortgage payment and other expenses keep rolling in.

Will autonomous trucks stop truck accidents?

The trucking industry is constantly changing, generally for the better. Strides in technology improved safety standards to keep both truck drivers and the motorists they encounter safer. Other possible advancements may improve conditions even further.

One point the industry is considering is using autonomous trucks, or driverless trucks. It may be difficult to imagine now, but many experts think that the technology for autonomous trucks is coming quickly, perhaps even in the next three years. Regulations still have to catch up as lawmakers debate what is safest for society at large. Like most issues, there are pros and cons to consider that may affect you and your family here in Tennessee and around the country.

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