Welcome to the Blog of The Glassman Law Firm, P.C., St. Louis Personal Injury Attorneys

We blog about relevant issues in personal injury law, discuss the misconceptions surrounding personal injury law and some of the most popular cases in the news, inform on the legal and political landscape of tort reform and insurance company lobbying, and provide readers with helpful personal injury information and resources. Please visit www.glassmanlegal.com for more information.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

New Transportation Rules Preventing Driver/Pilot Fatigue Don’t Go Far Enough

As discussed in an earlier blog post, driver fatigue plays a role in far too many truck and plane crashes and is one of the greatest threats to transportation safety. Every year both truck driver and pilot fatigue contribute to thousands of crashes and deaths in the trucking and aviation industries.
As I state on my website, despite federal “in service” regulations put in place to ensure drivers do not drive while sleep deprived,  “less principled companies do cut corners and ‘overlook’ the hours-of-service regulations that legally limit the number of hours that a trucker can drive per week. As a result, 40-ton commercial tractor-trailer rigs are being operated on our highways by sleep deprived drivers every day.”  The ramifications of this negligence are staggering: The Highway Traffic Safety Administration estimates that 30% of the deaths and 70% of highway injuries are the result of negligently operated trucks by fatigued drivers.
Just as serious, but less reported in the media is pilot fatigue. However, pilot fatigue is now in the news. As you may have heard reported, in December 2011 the Federal Aviation Administration announced new rules to reduce potentially dangerous pilot fatigue .
An editorial recently published by USA today is highly critical of the new transportation rules for both trucking and aviation. The editorial claims that while the new rules are more realistic, they fall short of what is truly needed.
As a personal injury lawyer, I agree the new rules don’t go far enough to protect the drivers, pilots, passengers and bystanders that have been seriously injured by driver and pilot fatigue. It is important to keep pushing this issue until rules are in place that truly protect the roads and airspace, and ensure that companies follow the regulations.
Take care and be well ~ Stephen Glassman, St. Louis personal injury attorney.
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Monday, January 2, 2012

MDOT launches Pedestrian Safety Campaign- 2011 Statistics Show Pedestrian Accidents on the Rise in Missouri

Photo credit anankkml
According to a recent article, pedestrian accidents are rising in Missouri, worrying officials. The article states, “After just nine months in 2011, the number of pedestrian traffic deaths is nearly equal to those experienced in 2010,” reports the Missouri Department of Transportation. “In fact, during the first quarter of 2011, 21 pedestrian deaths were recorded, compared to nine during the same period in 2010.”

As a St. Louis pedestrian accident attorney I find these statistics disturbing. Why is this happening? The experts don’t know, and it appears there are no patterns to point to the increase. “Slightly more pedestrians died last year on city streets (31) than on interstates or rural stretches of highway (28). And the 941 injuries in Missouri towns were more than triple those on the long-haul routes,” the article states. 

Motorists are required to do everything they can to avoid hitting pedestrians. That means slowing down or stopping as they approach crosswalks or intersections where pedestrians may be present. However, pedestrians have a responsibility to use good judgment and do their part to prevent an accident. "It's a two-way street," said Brent Hugh, Executive Director of the Missouri Bicycle and Pedestrian Federation. "Drivers need to watch and drive with care around pedestrians, and pedestrians need to look for cars. Even when the pedestrian has the right of way, that right won't stop an oncoming vehicle."

The article states a few tips on how to stay safe as a pedestrian, “When walking by a road, walk against the traffic; when crossing one, always be aware that your electronic devices may be making you vulnerable. Try to make eye contact with the drivers, but never assume you have been seen when you step out into traffic.” 

In fact, the Missouri Department of Transportation (MDOT) has launched a new pedestrian safety campaign on their website with the slogan “Be Safe, Be Seen, Arrive Alive.”

As a pedestrian accident attorney, if you have questions or concerns about a pedestrian accident or pedestrian injury, please reach out to me at www.glassmanlegal.com.

Be safe and take good care ~ Attorney Stephen Glassman, Glassman Legal

Stay up to date with the latest pedestrian accident information by following me on Twitter @GlassmanLegal.