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IL injury lawyerDriving gets us to where we need to be, but that does not stop the world around us. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, over 3,000 people died as result of car accidents involving distracted driving in 2017. There are many distractions that a driver can face while on the road, and most are preventable.

Distracted driving is anything that diverts your attention from focusing on operating a car. This includes changing the radio station and speaking to others in the car, which may come naturally to us. However, one of the most dangerous instances of distracted driving has to do with mobile devices. Because of this, it is illegal in Illinois to use a cell phone while operating a car. This includes the use of tablets or personal digital assistants. No matter if you are talking on the phone, or using it to check the time, you are breaking the law. Exceptions include pulling over to the shoulder, using a “hands-free” device, or if it is an emergency.

It is difficult to avoid what is going on around us while in the car. However, it is in your best interest, your passengers, and the surrounding people, to focus your attention on driving. Consider these tips for cutting down on distracted driving:

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IL injury lawyerAs people age, they are often more respected due to their life experience. However, elders can often face abuse from family, caretakers, or nursing homes. Any person can be subject to abuse, but The National Institute on Aging estimates that thousands of people over the age of 60 are taken advantage of every year.

Taking care of an aging loved one is not a commitment everyone can make. Older people require specialized care, and you may not have enough time to meet their needs. Nursing homes are a great alternative for elders who need assisted care. Someone can be there around the clock to help with basic tasks or administer medicine, and nursing homes can combat loneliness by creating a social environment. Unfortunately, there is also a dark side to nursing homes where vulnerable people are abused.

It is possible or any elder to face abuse in a nursing home, but the most likely victims are people who rely on assistance for basic life skills such as getting dressed, bathing, or taking medication. A person who has an illness such as dementia or Alzheimer may also be subject to abuse, or people who do not have friends or family to check the system. Older women are more likely to be abused, but older men face abuse in nursing homes as well.

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IL accident lawyerEveryone gets tired while doing their jobs. However, when a truck driver gets fatigued, the result can be fatal. In 2017, 4,102 people died as the result of a truck accident. The majority of these deaths are people in passenger cars, so when a truck driver falls asleep behind the wheel, it is the drivers around that suffer.

To prevent driver fatigue the United States Department of Transportation has rules and regulations regarding truck drivers. These rules keep in mind the truck drivers well-being as well as keep the roads safer. Each time a truck driver beings a shift, it must begin with 10 consecutive hours of rest. In-between rest periods, drivers are limited to 14 hours of being on duty. Three of those hours must be used for breaks while on the road, totaling 11 hours of driving time. After eight hours, the driver must take a 30-minute break as well. A driver is limited to 60 hours total on duty during a seven-day period, and 70 hours during an eight-day period. Before restarting a seven-day work week, a driver must rest for 32 consecutive hours that include hours of 1:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. twice.

Before 2011, the cut off for time worked for truck drivers was 82 hours. The new rules were put in place to give truck drivers adequate rest. However, many drivers and companies disagreed with the new regulations because they cut down on productive work hours. Since the amount of truck accidents caused by fatigue totals only 7%, compared to brake errors and negligent driving, many people in the industry claim the cuts were unnecessary.

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IL injury attorneyAs seniors grow older, their family members often become responsible for their wellbeing and care. With full-time jobs and families, becoming a caregiver for an elder loved one is not always a viable option. Older people often require specialized care that only a medical professional can administer. Nursing homes are a respected option for families who have elders who can no longer take care of themselves. While these facilities do have benefits, far too often, older people can become victim to the system.

Elders are often easy targets. In fact, 10% of people aged 60 years or older have faced some form of elder abuse. The statistics of abuse go up with elders with mental impairments such as dementia or Alzheimer’s disease. Abuse also comes in many forms. Examples are physical, emotional, neglect, isolation, and exploitation.

It is important when visiting a loved one in a nursing home, to look out for signs of abuse. Some forms of abuse, such as emotional or financial, may not be obvious but are just as harmful as visual physical abuse.

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Il accident lawyerWhen people think of car accidents, their first thought might be a major head-on collision on a public road such as a highway. But, as a driver, you know how chaotic a busy parking lot can be. There are cars fitted into small spaces, drivers coming at every which way, pedestrians walking in between cars, and other physical barriers such as shopping carts. These are more commonly minor and nonfatal accidents, but car accidents in a parking lot can be caused by negligence like any other situation.

The following are common parking lot accidents:

  • Backing into Each Other: Two drivers can collide when both are in reverse. This happens when neither drivers are looking behind them, and so both are technically at fault.
  • Merging into Traffic Lane: A person pulling out of a space may not be looking while preparing to merge into ongoing traffic. Although both cars were likely moving in this scenario, the driver pulling out of the parking space is most likely at fault. In the traffic lane of a parking lot where people get to their spots, the driver in the lane has the right of way. When a person backs into that lane, they are most likely at fault for not looking before putting their car in reverse.
  • Rear End at Stop Sign: Stop signs are placed in parking lots to allow for pedestrians to safely walk, and to keep drivers at a reasonable speed. If a person rear ends you at one of these stop signs, they were likely not paying attention, or going too fast.

The biggest issues being parking lot accidents are speeding and distracted driving. Going over five miles per hour in a parking lot can be dangerous with so much going on around. It may feel safer to check your phone or adjust the GPS in a parking lot, but it is still important to pay attention like you would on the road. Being mindful in a parking lot, and these steps and will help prevent car accidents in parking lots.

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