Automobile Accidents in the US: Common Causes and Contributing Factors

All over America, automobile accidents happen with alarming frequency. According to data collated by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the year 2014 saw over 6 million reported crashes all over the country. In all these accidents, many individuals were fortunate to survive with only a few minor injuries. Unfortunately, plenty more of those affected by these accidents were either severely injured or killed. According to NHTSA’s data, these 2014 crashes caused 32,675 deaths and led to 2.34 million people that needing emergency medical attention for their injuries.

Considering the deadly consequences of automobile accidents, it’s important to raise awareness regarding the different factors that contribute to these dangerous occurrences. In some cases, car crashes can happen due to factors unforeseen by motorists like mechanical defects in their vehicles or hazardous road conditions. However, a good majority of car accidents also happen due to reckless behavior by negligent drivers. Drunk driving is one of the most commonly identified reasons for fatal car crashes. Distracted driving is another common factor that contributes to deadly crashes, as well as traffic violations such as speeding and disregarding traffic lights and stop signs.

Certain types of vehicles also make the roadways more deadly for motorists. SUVs and 4-wheel drives, for example, are particularly susceptible to tipping or falling over due to instability caused by their size. These rollover accidents happen due to abrupt swerves or turns and are typically made possible by defective designs by manufacturers.

Regardless of the specific cause, Madison automobile accident attorneys know that car accidents can be very traumatic events that could lead to many long-term effects. Raising awareness on the many causes of these accidents can help inform motorists of the things they can do in order to keep roadways safe all over America. Meanwhile, those that have been injured in automobile accidents can use this information when filing a personal injury case against the driver at fault.

Common Causes of Airplane Accidents

Airplanes are the quickest means to travel from one country to another. While you can take a ship, it will take you several days to reach your destination. On the other hand, an airplane can take you only hours or a few days. Although quite uncommon than car accidents, plane crashes can still prove to be devastating. According to the website of Schuler, Halvorson, Weisser, Zoeller & Overbeck, P.A., airplane accidents can cause severe injuries and fatalities.

There are many factors that can contribute to airplane crashes. The good news is that aviation accidents are quite rare. According to the National Safety Council, the chances of death from a plane crash is 1 in 7,178 as compared to a car crash which is at 1 in 98. In addition, the odds of being killed in a single flight on one of the top 78 major world airlines is 1 in 4.7 million. But then again, luck will not always be on your side. Here are 5 of the most common causes of airplane accidents:

1. Pilot Error

Pilot error accounts for half of all plane crashes. This is quite understandable considering what pilots do during the flight. They must navigate through dangerous weather, respond to mechanical problems, ensure a safe takeoff and landing and others. Airplane accidents happen when pilots misread equipment, misjudge weather conditions, or react late to mechanical errors.

2. Mechanical Failure

A study by Boeing attributed 20 percent of today’s airplane accidents to mechanical failure. Such factor is not as major as it is today than before when 80 percent of accidents were due to mechanical error. According to Kyle Bailey, FAA Safety Team representative, the decrease in mechanical-related accidents were the result of improvements in airplane technology.

3. Weather Conditions

Although flights are grounded or canceled when there is a weather disturbance, it can prove a challenge to pilots and air traffic controllers. Traveling on heavy winds and fog can be dangerous for airplanes. Lightning can disable the plane in a variety of ways as it can result to electrical failure or ignite fuel tanks and pipes.

4. Sabotage

Airplanes getting hijacked account for only 9% of plane crashes. Despite strict TSA regulations, some passengers are still able to sneak in bombs or firearms onto planes. When they are able to do so, they can bring down planes and kill hundreds of passengers.

5. Other Human Error

Some accidents are caused by the fault of other humans. For instance, when an air traffic controller makes a mistake, the plane crashes into mountains, land on occupied runways, or collide with other planes.

Recall Classifications by the U.S. FDA

According to the website of Crowe & Mulvey, LLP, numerous defective products like food and appliances are sold to the public every year. Unfortunately, these faulty products result in the injury or illness of the consumers, and sometimes, it even leads to death. Product recalls by different federal agencies are one way to determine whether the things you just purchased are dangerous to you and your family. One of those agencies is the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), which is under the United States Department of Health and Human Services and is the branch that is in charge of public concerns associated with food, beverage, and pharmaceutical products.

According to the FDA, when the agency discovers that an FDA-regulated product is faulty and potentially dangerous, the most effective way of protecting the public is to recall the product, take it off the market, and advise the public not to consume the product. In most cases, the recall is voluntary—once the manufacturer or distributor finds the fault in the product, they issue their own recall. FDA still enters the picture in voluntary recalls by overseeing and assessing the recall, based on the agency’s website.

The FDA classifies the recall into three: classes I, II, and III. Class I recalls pertain to those products that are prone to serious illnesses and deaths as results, such as undeclared allergens and botulinum toxin on food, label mix-ups on lifesaving drugs, and defective surgical tools, as per the FDA website. Class II recalled products are those that may cause non-permanent health problems. Lastly, products classified as Class III are far from causing serious health repercussions but have violated the standards given by the FDA.

When a food or pharmaceutical product seems defective, it is always wise to check up on the latest product recalls by the FDA. If you have already been affected, the next best thing to do is seek the help of a personal injury lawyer as they cover these types of cases.

Why Medical Errors Might Occur

A number of actions (or inactions) can account as medical malpractice. Prescription medication errors are just one of the ways that a person can suffer from medical malpractice. Taking the wrong dosage of a certain medication or taking a wrong medication altogether can result in serious health complications or even death. There are many ways prescription drug errors occur, the most common being mislabeling, failure to warn patients of the side effects, administering the wrong prescription, or prescribing a medication to which the patient is allergic to. In order to have a successful medical malpractice or injury claim, it is important to know who should be held responsible for the medical error.

Generally, anyone who is involved in the prescribing of the medication can be held liable to medication errors. According to the website of Habush Habush & Rottier S.C. ®, these people include (but are not limited to) physicians, pharmacy departments, hospitals, medical staff, and pharmaceutical manufacturers. It is therefore important for your lawyer to investigate and gather evidence on who directly committed the prescription drug error in order to present a strong case.

Wrong medications or dosages are often a mistake committed by physicians or nurses. Bad handwriting from doctors have resulted to millions of injuries and even death around the United States, and although this problem is slowly fading in numbers, human errors due to stress or fatigue can lead to medications administered wrongfully or in the wrong amount. Another issue to look into is whether the medication was labeled properly or that the medication did not provide enough information on the risks and side effects. According to the website of Evans Moore Attorneys, because these mistakes can often be due to negligence on the part of the drug manufacturers, a product liability lawsuit is also a possible legal option. Regardless of how much you trust your doctor, it is always important to talk about possible side effects, as well as possible drug interactions and allergic reactions that may occur.

Because the victims of prescription drug errors can lead to life-threatening conditions and even death, it is important to first get proper medical attention to relieve the problem.

Medication Errors a Form of Negligence

Medication errors are not common, particularly at nursing homes. However, when they do occur, it can be confusing to decide what legal option to take; can you make the nursing home liable? Are you filing for a medical malpractice claim or a personal injury claim? One of ways to determine which claim to file is to see if there is medical negligence.

Courts often define medical negligence as failure on the medical health care provider’s part to practice and provide the degree of care and skill required from them in accordance to their specialty. Also taken into account are the advances in the medical profession and the resources that are available to the nursing home facility. Medical negligence through medication errors are very easy to commit. According to the website of Hach & Rose, LLP, a medication error can occur through the administration of the wrong medication or from the wrongful dosage of the needed medication.

Other causes of medication errors are when the prescription negatively affects the patient’s diet or other medication that they are taking. Mislabeled medication is also a problem that causes medication errors, along with misinformation or withheld allergies and other taken medications. The effects of these medication errors on nursing home residents can vary from nominal to fatal. Suspecting a medication error administered to your loved one should immediately prompt you to contact a physician in order to straighten out the situation.

A Massachusetts personal injury lawyer would probably tell you that medication errors are often visible through medical records, so obtaining such evidence can be crucial. If there is evidence of medical errors that caused injury to the patient, then the victim or the family of the victim can file for an injury claim or medical malpractice lawsuit.