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STEAKLEY MORRISON P.C.
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Waco Personal Injury Law Blog

Will automation lead to safer roads or product liability claims?

As automakers continue to explore autonomous driving features in car designs, consumers may wonder whether these new features will improve safety.  Although computerized systems have the potential to perform consistently, an attorney that focuses on product liability work knows that products continue to injure American consumers each year.

The defect is not always in a product’s design. Sometimes products may cause injury due to a manufacturing defect. Other times, a product may have been inappropriately marketed, leading consumers to believe that a product could perform beyond its actual capabilities.

Can a workplace injury give rise to a wrongful death lawsuit?

According to a recent update, the widow of a Texas construction worker is still fighting to hold the employer of her late husband accountable in a wrongful death lawsuit. After six years of litigation, the case is finally in the pretrial stage. 

The lawsuit includes several defendants: the construction firm who employed the woman's late husband, the manufacturer of the bulldozer involved in the workplace accident, and the company that sold the bulldozer. According to the complaint, the bulldozer may have malfunctioned because of a design defect. The defendants have denied this allegation, claiming that the man's operation of the bulldozer was negligent. 

Are fatal truck accidents on the rise?

The year’s end brings end-of-year reports in many industries, both corporate and governmental. Unfortunately, those reports don’t always contain good news.

According to the annual traffic-injury report prepared by the U.S. Transportation Department, large-truck crash fatalities rose for the fourth straight year. Across the country, 3,964 Americans died from accidents involving big rigs. Many of those crashes involved motor vehicles, although pedestrian accidents with large trucks were also included in the total count.

Fatal Texas accident apparently caused by reckless driving

No matter how cautious one is when driving on an Interstate, highway safety depends upon all drivers who are sharing the roads in Texas. A good driver remains at-risk and, unfortunately, can become a casualty due to the reckless driving of another. Driving at excessive rates of speed with disregard to traffic laws, or under the influence of alcohol or controlled substances, adds to the risk of potential tragedy and places the lives of others in danger.

Such a tragedy appears to have become a reality in the wee hours of a recent Tuesday morning when a deadly crash occurred on I-10 in Baytown. A lieutenant, acting as a spokesman for the city police department, stated that the wreck happened at 1 a.m. on the westbound side of the roadway. Two vehicles were involved, with one driver blamed for the wreck.

Reckless driving at Texas concert blamed for 2 deaths, injuries

A night of music, socializing and fun turned gruesome for those gathered outside a group of busy Texas nightclubs. Reckless driving endangers lives as those present at the concert may attest. Two were killed and dozens more injured when a driver smashed through a barricade into a crowd of people.

Reports indicate that a man was fleeing police during a traffic stop when his vehicle barreled through the safety barricade and into a stream of concert-goers. Police stated that the driver, an aspiring music artist, had a blood alcohol level above the legal limit. An arrest was made, and the man was jailed on capital murder charges.

Even when fault in an accident seems clear, consult an attorney

Even in the wake of a tragedy as deadly as the recent crash involving five Texas A&M students, insurance carriers may have their own interests in mind.

According to preliminary reports, five Texas A&M students were headed westbound on State Highway 105 East when an approaching pickup truck crossed the centerline. Although the students swerved in an attempt to avoid a collision, the two vehicles collided head-on.

Texas motorcycle accidents may be on the rise

A recent motorcycle accident involving a 43-year-old Waco man remains under investigation. When authorities arrived on the scene, there were no other vehicles around. To rule out foul play, authorities have enlisted the help of their accident reconstruction team. It’s unclear whether a hit-and-run may factor into this tragedy.

In a recent post, we explored motorcycle crash data. The numbers tell a sobering tale. According to data from the Texas Department of Public Safety, nearly 500 motorcyclists were involved in fatal crashes in 2013, representing a five percent increase from the previous year. However, the state DPS is also doing its part to contribute to road safety. 

Does an auto defect give rise to legal liability?

For many prospective car buyers, safety features are an important factor in their decision-making process. Carmakers have responded to that consumer demand by including safety features in their advertisements. Yet when a product does not work the way it was advertised, does a consumer have any legal rights?

A personal injury attorney that focuses on product liability lawsuits knows that answer to be yes. Products that cause injury due to a design defect may subject the manufacturer to liability. In addition, a carmaker that has notice of a dangerous or defective car part but fails to timely issue an auto recall could also find itself facing liability. 

Tips for driving safely during winter months

As local readers know, Waco, Texas almost never gets snow. However, it does average about 36 inches of rain per year. In addition, temperatures in Waco can drop to the low 30s during January and February. As careful drivers know, rain and temperatures close to the freezing point can be a deadly combination. 

Winter road conditions in Waco may be better than in many other parts of the country. Nevertheless, a recent motor vehicle accident serves as a reminder to use caution and monitor road conditions closely during the next few weeks. 

Are motorcyclists more at risk than other drivers?

In a motor vehicle accident involving a motorcycle, the motorcyclist seldom comes out ahead. Motorcyclists may take extra precautions, such as wearing a helmet and defensive driving. Special training and licensing may also improve safety and reduce the chance of a motorcycle accident. However, the sheer mass of other vehicles on the road can create forces of impact that inflict devastating damage and injuries to motorcycles and their riders.

Notably, data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration confirms that motorcycles accounted for 15 percent of traffic fatalities in the United States in 2012, despite comprising only 3 percent of the registered vehicles in that year. NHTSA data also indicates that a disproportionate number of motorcycle riders are also involved in alcohol-related fatal crashes, compared to other intoxicated drivers. A recent story provides context. 

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HARRISON DAVIS
STEAKLEY MORRISON P.C.
Attorneys At Law

5 Ritchie Rd | Waco, TX | 76712
Phone: 254-633-2813 | Toll Free: 866-539-2648 | Fax: 254-761-3301

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