Electric Bicycles To Be Available in Fort Worth Soon

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You are starting to see a few people riding around on electric bicycles and electric scooters and might think they are good ideas. They encourage people to exercise, reduce our ever-increasing road congestion, and help protect the environment, so I was interested when Fort Worth just announced that its B-Cycle bicycle sharing program will add 50 electric assisted bicycles in April.

B-Cycle had test rides available yesterday so I hopped on one at City Hall before work to check them out.

MC-before-crash-BLOG-B-LeongFort Worth Fatal Motorcycle Crash Controversial

A 30-year-old man was riding his bike when he hit another vehicle at an intersection last week. Tragically, Da’Ron Miller was the victim of another fatal motorcycle crash here. We have far too many of these deadly crashes. Sadly, 501 people drivers and passengers lost their lives last year according to statistics from the Texas Department of Transportation. The police found that Mr. Miller was to blame. But according to this article in the Star Telegram, there is a heated dispute about whether another driver was at fault.

According to witnesses, Mr. Miller had just left a charity car wash by himself when a woman cut in front of him. The police officers did not interview these people.

Based on the woman’s account, the police said that Mr. Miller was speeding in a group of cyclists and that the crash was 100% his fault.

The investigating officers obviously did not witness the collision (although they were down the street investigating another motorcycle crash). And people sometimes have preconceived ideas about who is at liable, especially when a young man is riding a motorcycle.

The police are now saying that they want to talk to these eyewitnesses. A lawsuit for the wrongful death of Mr. Miller will presumably have to be filed to find out what really happened.

There was a similar motorcycle crash yesterday in Arlington. A 23-year-old man riding his motorcycle on New York Avenue died after a woman in a SUV suddenly cut in front of him.

And on Thursday there was another death arising out of a car accident in Fort Worth that was either caused by road rage or a suicide.

Sometimes it is clear who caused a motorcycle, car, or truck collision, but other times it is not. Crashes happen in the blink of an eye. Legal questions about fault, damages, and payment of damages are common. Continue reading

Back-ContainerBerenson Injury Law Succeeds in Tough Fort Worth Truck Accident Lawsuit

Joe was driving his 18-wheeler on Interstate 35 in Fort Worth when another 18-wheeler bumped his trailer on the right rear side as he changed lanes. Property damage to his trailer was very minor, as you can see. The driver was in pain and asked to be taken to a hospital by ambulance. There he was checked out and released with the typical diagnosis of a soft tissue injury to his neck and low back.

This happened two years ago today (Halloween) early in the morning. Joe hired our personal injury law firm when he rightfully suspected he would be tricked (not treated) by the other driver’s insurance company.

A fracture or an open wound is easy to see, but how do you know if you have a soft tissue injury after a car accident? Let’s look at some of the different types of these more subtle injuries and examine what to expect if one happens to you.

What Are Soft Tissue Injuries?

Soft Tissue Injury After a Car Accident

The soft tissue of the body includes ligaments, muscles, tendons, skin, and fat. Any tissue that is soft to the touch is a type of soft tissue. Even blood vessels and nerves are types of soft tissue. Types of soft tissue injuries include sprains to the ligaments, bruises, and strains due injuries to tendons.

If you have a soft tissue injury after a car accident, it occurred due to the impact of a crash, angle of impact, seating position, and other factors. When a vehicle crashes into another car, truck, or roadside barrier, it causes a great deal of force. This depends on the weight and speed of the vehicles involved. The impact changes the direction of the body producing a reaction known as “muscle splinting.”

The body is an amazing machine, often responding to stimuli or changes on its own with minimal delay. When it experiences violent motions, the body sometimes shuts down certain muscle groups. The nervous system releases hormones that create a “fight or flight” state. Sometimes that causes the ligaments to relax, making them more vulnerable to injury. A soft tissue injury after a car accident can either be acute (short-term) or chronic (long-lasting.) The latter obviously denotes a longer healing time. A critical job for medical professionals is knowing the difference so that you get the most effective treatment.

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New Law Enacted A Year Ago

We’ve been keeping tabs on the Texas texting ban and hoping it makes people drive more responsibly. But the jury is still out on whether the new law is working. While most people agreed that our state should prohibit texting while driving, the new law was so watered down by the Legislature that it has not been effective. In fact, more Texans are texting and driving – and causing car accidents –  than ever before.

Texas Texting Ban

Texas Department of Public Safety troopers have issued only 1,195 tickets and 4,247 warnings to drivers in the past year according to the Star-Telegram.  As much as we’d like to think that these lower-than-expected numbers correlate to fewer drivers texting on their phones, that is wishful thinking.

After the Texas texting ban came into effect on September 1, 2017 the Texas Department of Transportation partnered with AT&T on the It Can Wait campaign to educate drivers about cellphone use. According to the data collected, 89% of Texans admitted that they still use the smartphone while driving, more than before the law was passed.

This is a very serious problem that sites like the Department of Transportation’s Talk Text Crash will not begin to solve. That site reports there were over 537,000 reported crashes in Texas (often police choose not to write police reports so the number is much higher) just last year. A whopping 100,000 of those were caused by cell phone use and distracted driving.

Don’t think that matters? 444 Texans lost their lives in those car wrecks and almost 3,000 were seriously injured. The numbers for 2018 have not been released yet but it is believed they will be even higher based on year to date figures.

Texas is still the worst state when it comes to fatal crashes involving cell phone use while driving — far more than California which has 12 million more people.

Continue reading

Future transportation vehicles on display here this weekend

On Saturday I drove my wife and myself to Arlington to demo some crazy future transportation shuttles and I was very impressed with what I saw. The van we rode in drove, stopped, and steered safely all by itself. There was no chance of any distracted driving, driving while intoxicated, speeding, or other stupid driver actions that anger me as a Fort Worth car accident lawyer that I see on a daily basis.

I hope these new vehicles can help make our roads safer and reduce the 54 car wrecks in Tarrant and Dallas Counties on an average day. With the rapid changes technology is bringing to our lives, we are on the cusp of innovative changes in the way we move around. Within our lifetimes, it is predicted that vehicles out of a sci-fi movie will be norm.

Continue reading

But are self-driving vehicles safe?

Three vans that move slowly without drivers will be available to ride around the stadiums/Six Flags area in Arlington starting today. Presumably other Texas cities are considering the use of self-driving vehicles. But while some people say they are the future of transportation, most are frightened.

Proponents of this new technology say that these vehicles are far safer than the ones on the road now. With 84,000 crashes each year just here in Tarrant and Dallas Counties, that’s hard to dispute. And disability advocates argue that handicapped people will be able to get around easier.

On the other hand, skeptics point to several fatal collisions and argue that there are not enough safety procedures to protect the driving public from robotic vehicles on the open roads.

Both sides are right.

Congrats to Arlington, “America’s Dream City,” for pushing the Dallas-Fort Worth area forward and trying to make our streets safer. The new service from an exciting California start up company called driver.ai starts this weekend. Next weekend, the hours will be from 11:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.

I am always advocating for safer roads and am planning to ride one of the vans tomorrow to learn more. I’ll give you a full report Monday.

Glaring lapses in public safety were revealed by a horrific New York limo crash last week. The New York governor said that the vehicle and its driver were not legally allowed to even be on the road. As a result, 20 people lost their lives. The crash marks the deadliest transportation collision in our country since 2009. We must take stronger action to prevent disasters like this from happening in the future. Continue reading

When Bad Weather Crashes Happen To Good Drivers

A massive downpour has brought another three inches of rain to North Texas, this on top of soil that is saturated from last week’s deluge. Treacherous driving conditions increase the chances of people getting into bad weather crashes. And determining which driver’s insurance company must pay for the associated costs can become a complicated legal question. But hundreds of drivers have unfortunately been in wrecks here just in the past week and may be unexpectedly facing this problem.

In Fort Worth yesterday there were at least 80 crashes. Two people tragically died in the Dallas-Fort Worth area. In South Dallas, a man’s car got stuck in the mud of the median and he was struck when he attempted to cross the highway and just west of Fort Worth, an 18-wheeler jack-knifed and a van crashed into it. Our law firm is handling a crash case at almost that same location when an automobile driver and 18-wheeler were driving too fast on a rain-slick Interstate 20 and caused a six-vehicle pile-up last year at about this same time last year.

School Bus Crash Takes Life of Girl Near Dallas

A bus taking 42 students home last week ran off of the road in Mesquite and slammed into an electric pole. The school bus crash caused it to flip over and burst into flames from the impact with the power line. A 12-year-old girl was trapped inside and tragically died.

Three children, three police officers, and the 67-year-old bus driver were rushed to local hospitals, fortunately with non serious injuries according to the Mesquite Police Department. A young man on the bus heroically saved many of the students. It is truly a miracle that more children did not perish. Adding to the heart-breaking story, the sister of the girl was also on the bus.

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