Garden City Personal Injury Blog

Automakers turn to virtual pedestrians to test driverless cars

In March 2018, an Uber autonomous vehicle failed to detect a woman as she crossed a shadowy area of an Arizona street and struck her. She died, and the self-driving industry took a major hit. As a result of the accident, automakers have taken a fresh look at the way they test autonomous cars in New York and around the world.

The Arizona accident caused regulators to severely restrict automakers' access to public roads for testing. This has forced engineers to take a different approach to vehicle evaluations. For example, a Swedish company called AstaZero uses a private track to test self-driving vehicles with "virtual humans." These computerized pedestrians dart out of blind spots and engage in other challenging behaviors to measure an autonomous vehicle's ability to spot them and take the appropriate evasive actions. Swedish automaker Volvo is one of the company's clients as well as Swedish truck and bus manufacturer Scania.

Pedestrian death rate highest in 28 years

According to data gathered by the Governors Highway Safety Association, there were an estimated 6,227 pedestrian deaths in 2018. That was the highest number since 1990, and it represents a 35 percent increase from 2008. There were a number of reasons why New York pedestrians were being killed at higher rates, and they include distracted driving and walking as well as drug and alcohol use.

Individuals were distracted in part by using smartphones while walking to work. SUVs were more likely to kill or injure pedestrians because they hit victims in the torso and head. This type of vehicle was deemed more likely to injure or kill even when a collision took place at relatively low speeds. From 2013 to 2017, the number of deaths caused by an SUV rose 50 percent.

Making a claim after your child is injured at school

When you send your child to school, you do so will the expectation that they will be kept safe from harm. All teachers and school workers should be trained on safety, and children should be monitored at all times. If your child became injured while at school, in addition to being upset you may also be wondering whether the school itself is to blame.

It can be possible to hold a school legally liable for the injuries that your child suffered, especially when you had to pay costly medical bills as a result. Your ability to make a legal claim against the school does not necessarily relate to the seriousness of the injury, but to the expense of the medical bills.

Reducing truck crash deaths lies in truckers' hands

From 2015 to 2017, more and more of the fatal crashes that occur involve large trucks. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration has noted that the number of large truck occupant fatalities went up each year during that period as well. In particular, fatal work zone crashes involving one or more large trucks saw an increase in percentage for each of the three years. This trend affects New York and the rest of the nation.

The FMCSA presented this and other data at the 2019 Transportation Research Board Annual Meeting in Washington, D.C. However, it did not put the blame for the upward trend on truckers themselves. Most accidents, after all, have multiple factors. However, the data makes it clear that truckers can do a lot to improve road safety for everyone.

Tips for a safer urban cycling trip

Riding your bike is a great way to get around the city, but it's not always safe. Cyclists know that they aren't always on drivers' radars, so drivers may not expect them when they are present on the roadways.

While younger children might get away with riding on the sidewalk, that's not a possibility for adults. What can you do, then, to make sure that you don't fall victim to a driver's carelessness?

GHSA looks afresh at subject of speed-related crashes

The Governors Highway Safety Association has released a report that looks afresh at the role of speeding in many automobile-related fatalities in New York and across the U.S. It is estimated that excessive speed is behind one-third of all such fatalities. Despite the existence of state and federal policies and programs meant to reduce speeding, it continues to be thought of as culturally acceptable among many drivers.

The GHSA report is titled "Speeding Away from Zero: Rethinking a Forgotten Traffic Safety Challenge." The hopes of the organization echo those of Vision Zero, the nationwide road project that aims to completely eliminate motor vehicle fatalities. The report mentions how even a small decrease in travel speed can reduce the severity of crashes and injuries. Increase that speed, though, and lives are threatened, especially those of bicyclists and pedestrians.

Protect your rights after an accident with an uninsured motorist

Experiencing a car accident is always a frustrating ordeal, even if you do not suffer serious injuries and all the parties involved work together to reach a fair resolution quickly. However, you face an entirely different set of frustrations if you experience a car accident where the other river is uninsured.

Recovering fair compensation is possible after an uninsured motorist accident, but it is not simple. As soon as you realize that the other party does not have insurance, you must begin protecting your rights. The sooner you begin building your claim and gathering evidence against the other party, the sooner you can focus on your own needs and losses.

Migraines are frequently misdiagnosed as other conditions

New York residents who have been correctly diagnosed with migraines are, in a way, fortunate. One study shows that only one in 20 patients get an accurate headache or migraine diagnosis. The following are seven conditions that migraines are frequently confused with. The opposite, where patients with one of the seven conditions are diagnosed with a migraine, can occur as well.

Like many invisible chronic illnesses, migraines can be mistaken for anxiety and panic attacks. Patients may indeed develop anxiety, but this only results from the stress of living with migraines. A second mistake condition is Meniere's disease. The symptoms of this disorder of the inner ear include vertigo, hearing problems and a ringing in the ears, which can be mimicked by migraines.

AAA study says infotainment systems can be distracting

Infotainment systems can offer several useful features for drivers in New York, but some are irrelevant to driving and only serve as potential distractions. University of Utah researchers analyzed 30 infotainment systems on 2017 model vehicles and found that all of them demanded a moderate, high or very high level of attention. Participants in the study were drivers aged 21 to 36 who were asked to use the systems behind the wheel.

The results of this study, which was conducted for AAA, may be surprising to some. Drivers became quickly distracted, swerving out of lanes, ignoring stop signs and driving far below the posted speed limit. Researchers found that using the GPS and the feature for sending texts were the two most distracting tasks. They mentally and visually distracted drivers for more than 40 seconds each.

Elevators and escalators: A threat to workers and users

It is a common trope in horror movies to see someone get hurt in an elevator or pulled into the gears of an escalator. You might think that these are extreme situations made for movies, but the reality is that these types of accidents do happen. People get hurt in elevators and on escalators many times each year.

The reason that people get hurt on elevators and escalators usually comes down to malfunctions or not paying attention to the risks. Other times, people are hurt when they're working on these devices, installing them or repairing reported malfunctions. As always, it's vital that everyone is as cautious as possible when using these potentially dangerous methods of transportation.

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600 Old Country Road
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Garden City, NY 11530

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