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About Los Angeles Accident Center

Los Angeles Accident Center was created to provide useful information for anyone who has been injured in an accident due to someone else’s negligence in Los Angeles and throughout the state of California. Author and attorney Sherwin Arzani and his team have over 17 years of personal injury experience. If you have been injured in accident, you will find useful information to assist you during this difficult time.


Car Accidents Return as Los Angeles Eases COVID-19 Restrictions

If you are a resident of Los Angeles, you probably know that there was a significant decline in traffic during the coronavirus pandemic. As a result, there were fewer traffic accidents and car crashes. However, note that after a considerable drop in fatalities during the last 2 weeks of March, when the city’s stay-at-home order was implemented, the LA Police Department is reporting an alarming increase in traffic death on city streets.

Emptier Roads Pose a Greater Danger in Los Angeles

Although because of the novel coronavirus, more people are staying at home and also driving less, keep in mind that new data reveals that emptier roads can actually be more dangerous. According to the preliminary data from the National Safety Council, the death rates per mile driven significantly increased by 14 percent nationally in March compared to the previous year. 

You may be surprised to know that the sudden increase in deaths is linked with a surge of speeding on LA streets that are emptier than usual. And this is a cause of concern for the traffic and law enforcement authorities in the city. According to the LAPD, the increase in fatality rates can also be attributed to a higher number of people walking as well as biking in their neighborhoods. And in the first half of May, 21 people died in auto accidents, including 3 people who died in an unfortunate high-speed car crash on Imperial Highway in Willowbrook.

A Deadly Combination

The combination of activities curtailed, schools closed, summer jobs canceled, and the easing of COVID-19 restrictions could prove deadly. This is especially true as teenagers take to the road this summer. According to AAA, now is an excellent time for parents to not only model safe driving behaviors but also help ensure that their teenagers practice them, as well.

Did you know that as coronavirus stay at home orders were lifted, “total loss” car crashes increased 2% nationwide? This shows the importance of road safety and vigilance. These car crashes are so severe that the relevant insurance company will deem the vehicle a total loss rather than spending money in order to fix it.

Teen Drivers Pose a Higher Risk

Also, it is worth noting that a total of 159 individuals were killed in car crashes involving teenage drivers in Arizona in the last 10 years during the period between Memorial Day and Labor Day. Across the nation, more than 8,300 individuals lost their lives in teen-related summertime automobile crashes between 2008 and 2020. And that is more than 7 people per day each summer as compared to the rest of the year, representing 6 people per day.

City Officials are turning to Technology to Reduce the Risk of Accidents 

Did you know that speed levels are up by as much as 30 percent on some streets in Los Angeles?  This is why Los Angeles officials and law enforcement personnel have turned to technology to help curb speeding. The officials are also trying to prevent residents from tinkering with various pedestrian walk signals. They also decided to leave a majority of LA’s 5,000 traffic lights on nighttime settings. 

Note that the traffic lights in Los Angeles are usually synchronized so that drivers can easily get the green light at multiple intersections in a row. However, at night, when speeding is more common as streets are emptier, each traffic light works as a separate unit. And this means that drivers are considerably less likely to encounter a wave of green lights, and, hence, will be compelled to stop. 

And that is not all; the city has also deactivated pedestrian push buttons at many crosswalks so that people don’t have to risk contagion by pushing these buttons. Also, note that the slightly longer light cycles will force more drivers to stop.

The aftermath of a Los Angeles car accident can be a confusing and anxiety-ridden time. You might be in shock and extremely shaken from the accident itself, and might have sustained grave bodily injuries as the result of another person’s negligence.  Depending on the specific circumstances of your car accident, you may be eligible for damages or compensation. 

How a Los Angeles Personal Injury Attorney can help you

If you are involved in a car accident caused by the negligence of another driver, you may experience physical, mental, and financial harm. If you were seriously injured in a car crash, you might not be able to work while seeing your medical expenses, as well as regular bills, mount alarmingly. If you have sustained an injury or loss because of reckless driving in Los Angeles, you should discuss the circumstances of your personal injury with a knowledgeable and experienced personal injury attorney. 

How to Find a Good Los Angeles Personal Injury Attorney

Have you recently suffered an injury in an accident? You may be able to recover much-needed compensation by filing a personal injury claim for damages. The chances of being fairly compensated for your accident-related injuries increase when you hire an experienced personal injury attorney to represent you.

There are thousands of personal injury attorneys in the L.A. area; how can you decide which one is best suited to handle your case? The attorneys at the Los Angeles Accident Center have created a list of suggestions to consider when you are searching for a personal injury lawyer in Los Angeles.

Do an Online Search

The internet can be a wealth of information for accident victims. There are hundreds of different sites that offer information about local personal injury lawyers. While many of these websites can be great, some can prove to be more confusing than helpful. Try to stick to search engines, legal directories, and the California State Bar website when narrowing down your choice of attorney.

Search Engines

Search engines like Google and Yahoo can be a great way to learn about personal injury attorneys in your neighborhood. Use a search engine to conduct a broad search for terms like “Los Angeles personal injury lawyer,” “good personal injury lawyer near me,” or simply “Los Angeles accident lawyer.”

For even better results, try including the type of accident you were involved in and your personal neighborhood. If you were in a car accident in Glendale, try “Glendale car accident attorney.” If you were injured on the job in Ventura, try “Ventura worker’s compensation attorney.” The more specifics you include in your search, the more relevant the results will be.

Legal Directories

Legal directories are great, because they are generally easy to navigate and contain a lot of information about attorneys, including education, experience, publications, and contact information. Many of these directories have incorporated rating systems, which allow you to get a sense of what prior clients think about an attorney.

Take the time to read these reviews, they can provide a lot of information that will be extremely helpful in narrowing down your search. You may feel great about an attorney’s background and education, only to find out that prior clients have been disappointed with his/her representation. Great legal directories for finding a Los Angeles personal injury lawyer include:

Los Angeles County Bar Association

The Los Angeles County Bar Association website can be great if you need help finding an attorney. The website has a referral system to match clients with prescreened and qualified attorneys. The process, which is fairly easy to use, requires you to:

  • Choose the type of attorney you need to hire;
  • Indicate your preferred language;
  • Provide contact information; and
  • Explain your legal issue.

The referral service will then match you to relevant attorneys in your area.

California State Bar

Always check the California State Bar website for information about an attorney you’re thinking about hiring. This is where you can find official information about an attorney’s education, experience, and areas of specialization.

Request a Free Consultation

Most Los Angeles personal injury attorneys offer a free consultation for prospective clients. Once you have narrowed your search for an attorney down to a few you should ask to meet with them in person.

During a free consultation, the attorney will begin by giving you an overview of their experience and try to explain why they are well-suited to represent you. You will have an opportunity to explain why you want to pursue a legal claim and listen to their candid thoughts about your case.

Prepare For Your Free Consultation

Don’t walk into a free consultation without doing a little bit of homework. This includes checking out the attorney online and reading up about your type of accident injury case. The more information you have walking into the consultation, the better equipped you will be to have a frank conversation about your legal needs.

Ask Questions to Learn More

During your free consultation, you will have the opportunity to ask the attorney you are meeting with a series of questions. The questions you ask should help you to determine if you would be comfortable and confident hiring that attorney.

Questions that you should be prepared to ask during a free consultation with a Los Angeles personal injury attorney include:

  • How long have you been practicing as a personal injury attorney?
  • Do you practice personal injury law exclusively?
  • Have you ever been disciplined by the California State Bar?
  • Have you handled other cases like mine?
  • How many jury trials have you handled?
  • Are you confident in the courtroom or do you prefer to negotiate cases before trial?
  • What verdicts and settlements have you recovered in the past?
  • How much do you think my case is worth?
  • How much are your legal fees?

Consider What is Important to You

What is the most important characteristic of the attorney you hire to handle your Los Angeles personal injury claim? Is there a specific factor that will lead to you hire one attorney over another?

There are many things to consider when you are hiring a Los Angeles personal injury lawyer, and you will have to decide which are most important to you. This answer will help you decide which attorney is best-suited to handle your case.

Personality

You don’t have to be best friends with your attorney, but you do have to trust them. It is important to choose an attorney who you would feel comfortable confiding in. Details can make or break a case, so it is important to be as detailed as possible when discussing your case with your attorney.

When you are meeting with an attorney during your free consultation try to assess whether you feel comfortable and confident when speaking with them.

Cost

Most Los Angeles personal injury lawyers will take your case in exchange for a percentage of any compensation you recover. However, this is not always the case. Even when it is, this percentage will vary from case-to-case. Many times, this percentage can range anywhere from 25 percent to 40 percent of your compensation.

A personal injury attorney will consider the type of case, the complexity of the case, and value of the case when deciding the percentage they will take in any given case. Ask the attorney you meet with to give you a firm offer and to disclose any hidden fees (e.g., court costs, deposition fees, etc.) that may be linked to your case.

Experience

Some Los Angeles personal injury attorneys have decades of experience under their belt. They have handled thousands of cases and know the Los Angeles court system like the back of their hand. Maybe they’ve been practicing for so long that they have earned a reputation with local insurance companies and judges. This can be of great value to you when you hire that attorney to represent you.

However, this experience may also come at a cost. Established attorneys may charge more than attorneys with less experience. Just because an attorney does not have a significant amount of experience does not mean that they are not qualified to handle your case or that they will be any less effective. You will have to weigh the importance of experience when deciding which attorney is best for you.

Contact the Los Angeles Accident Center

Have you been injured in an accident in Los Angeles? Contact the Los Angeles Accident Center today to find out if you have a viable legal claim for damages. We will review your case, explain your rights, and answer any questions you have. You have a limited amount of time to act after an accident, so do not hesitate to call us today.

How Dangerous is Fatigued Driving?

Most of us here in Los Angeles have experienced the struggle to keep our eyes open during a late-night drive after an exhausting day at work. There are times when you stop to take a break or a nap. And sometimes, you might change drivers. Other times, you have no choice but to forge ahead, cranking up the music or opening the window.

While they impact drivers differently, keep in mind that fatigued driving can be just as dangerous or risky as driving under the influence of alcohol.

And many drivers in Los Angeles are aware of the fact that activities like driving under the influence and texting behind the wheel are not only dangerous to themselves, but also to those on the road with them. However, many people fail to realize that driving while tired or fatigued can be just as dangerous. 

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, annually, there are more than 100,000 reported traffic accidents caused by driver fatigue, accounting for almost 1,500 deaths, more than 70,000 injuries, and a loss of about $12 billion.  

Combating fatigued or tired driving starts with identifying as well as understanding the issues created by getting behind the wheel of your car in an impaired state.

What is Fatigued Driving?

We can define fatigued driving as the operation of a car or other vehicle by a driver who is drowsy, tired, or sleepy. This state creates a high risk of operational impairment. Fatigued or drowsy driving is hard to recognize. This is because there aren’t any tests for sloppiness, such as a breathalyzer test for intoxication. Also, note that sleepiness often spans a spectrum from moderate tiredness to the point of severe fatigue. And, in many cases, determining whether a driver is fatigued is usually based on self-assessment.

Dangers of Fatigued Driving

There is no doubt that fatigued driving can cause a driver to pay less attention to the road. It also slows their reaction time, adversely affecting the ability to make sound decisions. Fatigued driving also impairs short-term memory and information processing, decreasing performance, motivation, and vigilance in the process. 

Did you know that car accidents caused by fatigued or drowsy driving are the most common early in the morning and late at night?  Most car crashes are the result of failure to brake. And it is also common for many fatigued drivers in Los Angeles to veer off the road.

Fatigued driving is dangerous for you and others on the road. This is because sleep deprivation and fatigue can have similar effects on the body as drinking alcohol. Also, it is worth noting that being awake for eighteen hours makes you drive like you have a blood alcohol level of 0.05.  And if you have not slept for a full 24 hours and then drive after a night where you just could not fall asleep—it is like you have a blood alcohol level of 0.10.

The Warning Signs of Fatigued Driving

Drivers who are too fatigued or sleep-deprived to drive a vehicle can exhibit any of the following warning signs:

  • Missing exits or turns
  • Problems remembering the last couple of miles driven
  • Yawning and blinking on a frequent basis
  • Irritability and rubbing eyes
  • Hitting rumble strips present on the side of the road
  • Frequently drifting between lanes 

If you experience any of these signs, you should take a break or change drivers.

What Can You Do?

Before getting behind the wheel, you can take the following actions that will help prevent fatigued driving:

  • Refrain from consuming alcohol or drugs
  • Don’t drive from midnight to 6:00 am. This is because it is your body’s biological rhythm during which your body will naturally prefer to sleep
  • Drink more caffeine to stay vigilant
  • Do not try to rush, as this can lead to mistakes even when you have had a full night’s rest
  • When driving at night, have a second driver with you who can take over 
  • If possible, you should take a short nap before going on a long drive

Note that it is important that you be aware of your body and what you need in order to control your car or another vehicle safely. If you or someone you love was gravely injured or killed in a car crash, contact a personal injury lawyer today for a confidential and free case consultation.

How Safe Are Motor Scooters in California?

Motor scooters first came on the market in the 1900s and they have since gained immense popularity.  The most common brand of motor scooter is the Vespa. The Vespa was designed in Europe after WWII as an easier means to get around since many streets were impassible because they had been destroyed during the war. This new form of transportation allowed Europeans to move around again and aided in rebuilding cities.

In California, motor scooter use is the most evident in large cities like Los Angeles and San Diego. They are used with higher frequency in populated areas to avoid parking issues and help alleviate traffic woes.

However, like motorcycles, motor scooters are prone to crashes and accidents. This is mostly due to their smaller size, lower speeds, and the inability of other drivers to see them. There are precautions an operator can take to ensure that they are driving safely and that they arrive at their destination without harm.

What is a Motor Scooter?

A motor scooter is a two-wheeled vehicle that has a footrest platform and a step-through frame. Unlike many motorcycles, they are designed for only one rider. The motor size for a scooter is small and usually between 50cc and 250cc. They are generally run by electric charging and they operate on 10-inch wheels. Motor scooters are beneficial because they are easier to maneuver in large cities and smaller spaces.

Motor scooters are sometimes confused with mopeds. However, mopeds are less used in America, are smaller, have less powerful engines, and operate at a slower speed. In California, motor scooters are defined as either motorcycles or motor-driven cycles, depending on the engine size.  

To be classified as a motorcycle, the engine size must be 150cc or greater. If a motor scooter meets this classification, it needs to be registered at the local DMV as a motorcycle. The driver also needs to obtain an M1 motorcycle license.

If the motor scooter has an engine size of 149cc or less, it is classified as a motor-driven cycle. The majority of motor scooters will fit into this category and can usually only reach speeds of 30 mph or less. Motor-driven cycles also need to be registered with the local DMV and the driver must obtain an M1 motorcycle license.

Common Motor Scooter Accidents

Many motor scooter accidents are similar to those that are commonly seen with motorcycles. These are usually attributed to either operator error or other drivers not seeing the motor scooter. 

Aggressive Drivers: Motor scooters operate at a lower speed, which can exacerbate the possibility of a collision because other drivers want to go faster. The other drivers may act erratically to get around or cut off the driver of the motor scooter. A car could also easily sideswipe the motor scooter if they are trying to get around them to make a turn or go faster.

Rear-End Crashes: Rear-end collisions are also a big threat to motor scooter drivers. This is because the scooter is smaller and harder to see. A car may not be able to brake fast enough when approaching a scooter that is at a stoplight or waiting to make a turn. Additionally, a car may over or underestimate the distance between the car and motor scooter, which could also cause an accident.

Loss of Control: Finally, another common motor scooter accident is losing control of the vehicle. Because the scooters are smaller and can maneuver in reduced spaces, an untrained driver can easily lose control and crash or fall over. They could also tumble off the vehicle if they take a turn too quickly or stop abruptly.

California Motor Scooter Safety

If the scooter qualifies as a motorcycle, it can be driven on the highway. If it qualifies as a motor-driven cycle, it cannot be operated on a freeway or highway if there are explicit signs that forbid their use on that particular road. Like motorcycles, motor scooters cannot be driven on bike lanes. Smaller vehicles like electric scooters can use bike lanes if they meet certain California regulations.

Regardless of the engine size, in California, any person operating a motorcycle or a motor-driven cycle must wear a Department of Transportation (DOT) compliant helmet during operation of the vehicle. Basic safety tips can also help keep drivers safe and sound including:

  • Do not drive or take precautions when driving in rainy, windy, or snowy weather
  • Travel on lightly crowded or local roads, rather than large highways
  • Wear brightly colored clothing to make sure other drivers can always see you, and
  • Follow all road rules and never drive without a helmet.

If you could find yourself in a motor scooter accident in California, don’t hesitate to call an attorney for help. You could be entitled to compensation if someone else is at least partly to blame.