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Beckley Personal Injury Lawyer Blog

Always using headlights can reduce accidents

Every year in West Virginia, thousands of people are seriously injured in traffic accidents. Some of these accidents could be prevented if everyone drove with their headlights on during the day. While laws in Europe and Canada require motorists to drive with their headlights on during the day, there are no similar laws in the U.S.

Numerous studies have demonstrated that using daytime running lights during the day results in a decrease in the number of collisions. Experts believe that this decrease happens because headlights help to make vehicles easier to see by other motorists. Car manufacturers are not required to offer daytime running lights as standard on the cars that they sell in the U.S., and only 27 percent of new cars currently have the lights as a standard feature.

The Age Discrimination in Employment Act: The Facts

As you've gotten older, you've noticed that the people getting hired are younger and younger each year. The company changes with each new round of hires, and you start to see that you're being treated differently than usual.

Your age shouldn't matter, but in some workplaces, harassment and other negative effects are seen the older you become. Fortunately, age discrimination for those 40 or older is illegal thanks to the Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967.

Making safer work environments

West Virginia rmployees may wish to learn about new perspectives emerging in the field of workplace accident prevention. Employers in the past have often only recorded and taken action about incidents that directly resulted in a serious injury, but this approach may not be the most effective. According to a number of safety advocates, it's also advisable to record even potential accidents and work to improve workplace safety conditions overall.

The difficulty in this approach is that it often requires a degree of cooperation and trust between workers and management teams that might not exist in practice. If workers feel too intimidated to speak about any dangers that they face, it can be hard to discern the appropriate action to take. For this reason, safety advocates recommend that managers try to earn the respect and confidence of their employees. This can help to foster an atmosphere that prevents serious incidents before they arise.

Data shows accident avoidance systems help prevent car crashes

West Virginia drivers may be interested to learn that lane departure warnings and blind spot alerts can prevent car accidents, according to data from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. However, drivers and vehicle manufacturers in the U.S. have been slow to adopt these safety alert systems.

The study found that collision avoidance systems reduce the number of car accidents and injury-related crashes. For example, researchers found that sideswipe accidents, head-on collisions and single-vehicle accidents in 2015 were 11 percent less likely in vehicles that were equipped with lane departure warning systems and blind spot alerts.

Significant barriers confront driverless cars

The mountain roads of West Virginia challenge drivers every day, but the future might replace human drivers with fully automated cars navigated by computers. Large corporations like General Motors, Intel, Google and Apple have been investing billions in driverless cars and touting their safety potential. Despite their optimistic predictions, however, multiple barriers could slow the replacement of human drivers.

Mainstream adoption of automated vehicles will require state legislatures to update laws and regulations. Although promoters of computer-driven vehicles imagine a vast reduction in accidents, they will still happen and assigning liability could be difficult and complex. Government agencies will also need to grant private companies widespread permission to survey roads to gather data for the self-driving software. This effort will likely disrupt people's daily activities. People might also delay the switch to automated vehicles, especially the 3.5 million people employed as truck drivers in the United States. The threat of widespread job losses could impede the adoption of the technology.

Study finds few safety reporting improvements

Each year, many West Virginians are seriously injured while they are working on the job. When this happens, they and their families endure serious financial repercussions. The companies at which the workers are employed also suffer financial losses as a result. Despite this, a study shows that few improvements have been made by sustainable corporations in their safety and health reporting and compliance.

The Center for Health and Safety Sustainability conducted a study of the reporting of workplace injuries by sustainable corporations. Researchers reviewed reporting data from June through December 2016 and found several troubling problems.

Does the company culture at your new job include discrimination?

Imagine starting a new job in Charleston. On paper, it is your dream job. The pay is good, the benefits are excellent and it is in a field with which you have plenty of experience. However, after a few days, the company begins to lose its shine and your rose-colored glasses do not seem to be working quite so well.

It did not take long for you to begin to feel uncomfortable in your new work environment. Are you having a couple of negative days or is there discrimination going on? Sometimes it can be difficult to tell the difference. Read below for some signs of employment discrimination that you may be facing.

OSHA fact sheet for confined spaces

Construction workers in West Virginia should be aware of a fact sheet issued by the Occupation Safety and Health Administration. The document is intended to help residential construction companies adhere to the safety standards for confined spaces. The National Association of Home Builders assisted with the development of the fact sheet.

Included with the fact sheet is a page that details some of the provisions and how they affect residential construction work. Areas to which the standard applies include spaces that are big enough for workers to enter, have not been created to be continuously occupied and have restricted entry or exit ways.

When you see a drunk driver, follow these tips

Drunk driving is not a problem just in Charleston, but is responsible for a significant number of traffic accidents across the country. Sometimes it is almost impossible to avoid becoming a victim of a drunk driver. They can come out of nowhere, driving on the wrong side of the road or suddenly pulling out into traffic from a side street. It is the lack of the ability to anticipate a drunk driver that makes them even more dangerous.

According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), in 2014 almost 10,000 people suffered fatal injuries due to accidents with drunk drivers. In addition, law enforcement officers apprehended more than 1.1 million intoxicated drivers and 121 million people admitted to driving while drunk or under the influence. With this many intoxicated drivers on the road, the threat of becoming a victim is very real. Do you know what to do if you see a drunk driver on the road? Follow the tips below to so that you can protect yourself and your family every time you are on the road.

Device in development wakes up drowsy drivers with a shock

West Virginia motorists who consider themselves to be responsible drivers could still be in danger of making a mistake that most people aren't aware of when they do it, which is falling asleep behind the wheel. Fatigued driving is a serious problem in the United States that can have deadly consequences, and that is why one company has started a Kickstarter fund for a device it is developing that will literally shock sleepy drivers to wake them up.

The device, called Steer, was developed by Create Mode. The company's founder said he was inspired to do something about fatigued driving when a friend broke his collarbone after he fell asleep while driving and crashed into a tree. In 2016 development began on Steer, which is a device that is worn on the wrist and sends an electric pulse to a driver when it senses that he or she is dozing off.

Office Location

Stephen P. New, Attorney at Law
114 Main Street
Beckley, WV 25801

Phone: 304-250-3280
Toll Free: 888-692-8084
Fax: 304-250-6012

Located Near the Courthouse

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