Posted on Monday, May 3rd, 2021 at 8:31 pm
When a distracted driver causes a preventable collision, you are entitled to seek financial recovery for any damages they have caused to you.
When filing a civil suit against said driver, your best chance of proving negligence is to gather as much evidence as possible at the time of the incident – assuming you have not been seriously injured and can safely do so.
The Austin car accident attorneys of Ramos James Law, PLLC, are here to explain what distracted driving is and what evidence is needed in order to help support your claim.
What Is “Distracted Driving?”
Distracted driving can be classified as an event that does not allow a driver to focus and keep their cognitive, visual, and/or manual control of driving their vehicle.
Distracted driving behaviors include the use of a cell phone when behind the wheel, changing radio stations, eating and drinking, general reckless driving, or even having a conversation in which you are constantly looking at your fellow passengers while you drive.
As per the American Automobile Association (AAA), distracted driving leads to approximately nine deaths every day and 1000’s of injuries. Additionally, there were approximately 398 Texan lives lost on roadways in 2019 as a result of distracted drivers.
Being distracted for five seconds is all it takes to cause a catastrophic accident that could’ve been avoided.
Evidence to Gather in a Distracted Driving Accident
When a negligent driver causes damages to your body and/or personal property, it is crucial to gather evidence to support any claim you may file. Of course, depending on the circumstances of your accident, you may need help from a loved one to help you secure the following types of evidence:
- Photographs and/or video pertaining to the accident, including physical damages you suffered, vehicle damage, the location of the accident, and key street signs.
- The full legal name of the negligent driver, their phone number, model of their vehicle, license plate number, and insurance information.
- Any police reports (once they become available).
- Any and all medical reports, medication prescriptions, hospital bills, proof of rehabilitation treatment, and doctor’s notes.
What a Negligent Party Can Be Held Liable For
If proven guilty of causing an accident, a defendant (the negligent distracted driver) can be responsible for but not limited to:
- Medical bills
- Pain and suffering (physical and emotional)
- Lost wages due to missing work as a result of injuries sustained
- Vehicle and intellectual property damages
Austin Car Accident Attorneys Ready to Fight for Your Recovery!
When a distracted driver wreaks havoc into your life, causing serious harm that keeps you from the things you love, you are entitled to seek the financial recovery you deserve.
The Austin car accident team of Ramos James Law, PLLC, is determined to make things right. We will fight tooth-and-nail to get the financial compensation you deserve!
Contact Ramos James Law, PLLC, today for a FREE, no-obligation virtual consultation!
Posted on Saturday, April 17th, 2021 at 9:23 pm
April may be known for its various festivities like Easter, sporting events coming into full swing, and springtime fully blooming over.
April is also designated as Distracted Driving Awareness Month, a time where communities learn about the catastrophic–and often lethal–dangers of distracted driving.
The Austin car accident lawyers of Ramos James Law, PLLC are taking a look at what exactly counts as distracted driving, along with some advice on how you can prevent such a potential disaster from occurring.
What is Distracted Driving?
Distracted driving can range anywhere from:
- Texting and driving
- Eating or drinking while driving
- Changing playlists/adjusting GPS while driving
- Reckless driving/speeding
- Conversations or heated arguments with passengers
These types of instances keep you from putting your full attention to the road, potentially leading to serious car accidents in the blink of an eye.
According to the American Automobile Association (AAA), 9 individuals are declared dead and 1,000 are injured on a daily basis resulting from distracted driving accidents.
In 2019, 3,142 individuals lost their lives across U.S. roadways as a direct result of these types of accidents, which accounted for 8.5% of all U.S. roadway fatalities that year.
Additionally, cell phone use while driving can dramatically take a toll on your brain’s focus by 37%. Texting or posting on social media can take away a person’s ability to focus on the road for an average of 5 seconds, which is more than enough time to be involved in a preventable tragedy.
Key Tips to Avoiding Distracted Driving
While nobody can prevent a car accident, the best thing we can do as drivers is to:
- Avoid multitasking while driving. Refrain from doing anything that will keep your attention off of the road, including phone use, radio or playlist changing, eating or talking on the phone, even through Bluetooth technology. The safety of you and your passengers should be prioritized first and foremost.
- Use your iPhone and Android technology to limit features before driving. Turning on these features prevent certain functions while a car is in motion. It can be significant in avoiding a catastrophic accident.
- Ask your passengers to kindly respect the fact that you are driving. A good friend or companion should always refrain from distracting whoever might be behind the wheel at all times. Additionally, a passenger should act as a second pair of eyes for a driver in order to help them navigate around safely.
Austin Car Accident Attorneys Ready to Represent You in Your Distracted Driving Accident
When a distracted driver causes a car accident, it can leave you or a loved one with serious injuries and costly damages to your property. Because of this, it’s always in your best interest to seek legal representation from the Austin car accident lawyers of Ramos James Law, PLLC.
Our attorneys will fight tooth and nail in order to earn the recovery you deserve for any physical and emotional damages you wrongfully endured.
Involved in a distracted driving accident? Don’t hesitate to contact Ramos James Law, PLLC, today to schedule a free consultation!
Posted on Tuesday, March 2nd, 2021 at 11:48 pm
As Texas and Travis County just experienced a winter storm unlike any other in the state’s history, many individuals and families were left without basic essential utilities and were forced to drive on dangerous roads filled with black ice and sleet.
While Texans and fellow Austinites are used to sunny, warm weather for the majority of the year, many drivers were perhaps unaware of how to adequately drive in these rare situations. This, in turn, can lead to many vehicle-collisions across the state shortly after the time Winter Storm Uri occurred.
In order to understand how poor weather conditions can affect the way we drive, our Austin car accident attorneys at Ramos James Law, PLLC are taking a look at the related car accident statistics, and then to stay safe during these freezing conditions, we will take a look into a few useful tips as well.
Weather-Related Accidents Broken Down
While it is recommended to stay indoors during harsh weather conditions, many drivers are forced to drive through the storm, needing to fulfill a duty such as work, provide food, or assist in an emergency.
When driving in such conditions, many drivers are put at tremendous risk as they drive through wet, slippery, and icy roads, all of which can make operating a vehicle a difficult task.
Based on data collected by the United States Federal Highway Administration, approximately 24% of weather-related traffic accidents that occur tend to occur on snowy, slushy, or icy pavements. This kills 1,300 individuals and injures 116,800 on an annual basis.
From that same report, there is also an annual average of 900 fatalities and 76,000 injuries as a result of sleet and snowy road conditions–or around 15% of weather-related crashes in the U.S
Vital Safety Tips When Driving In Severe Weather
1. Check your vehicle for any faulty components: Before heading out, it is important to check if your wheels have sufficient air and meet air pressure standards. Cold temperatures cause air within the tire to contract, meaning less tire pressure. Check your heater, headlights, and brakes to make sure they are fully functionable as well.
2. Carry an emergency kit: Carrying a utility bag in your car can save you from a dangerous situation caused by poor weather. Make sure that your utility bag contains jumper cables, ice scrapers, anti-freeze, and blankets just in case.
3. Defog your windows: One of the major factors in these types of accidents tends to be lack of visibility. When driving in harsh weather conditions, it is wise to defog your windows when out on the road during cold weather. Check your vehicle manual to find out how.
4. Avoid sudden braking, and drive with caution: Sudden braking can lead to a vehicle rollover or a collision with another vehicle during fair weather, and during freezing temperatures, this danger is only increased. It is best to drive slowly and carefully at all times.
Austin Car Accident Attorneys Ready to Deliver Civil Justice When You Need It Most!
While we can all take the necessary precautions needed to avoid a car accident during severe weather conditions, there may be some of those on the road that ignore traffic laws and safety precautions, regardless of the weather.
If you or a loved one have been injured in a car accident as a result of a negligent driver, do not hesitate to get in touch with the Austin car accident attorneys of Ramos James Law, PLLC as soon as you possibly can to seek the financial compensation you are entitled to for your physical and mental pain and suffering.
Contact Ramos James Law, PLLC, today for a FREE, no-obligation virtual consultation!
Posted on Thursday, January 21st, 2021 at 7:08 pm
One of the longest–and arguably most traumatic–years of our lives is finally behind us, and now more than ever, it is important to have an optimistic view of what this brand new year potentially has to offer.
While we all may have a certain set of goals that we want to achieve within these next few months, it is important to consider making a pledge to yourself to become a safer and more efficient driver overall in order to avoid becoming a statistic while driving on our Austin roadways.
According to city officials, Austin experienced a total number of 91 traffic fatalities in 2020, a 4.6% increase from the previous year despite stay-at-home orders during a global pandemic. In order to decrease these numbers–and thus make Austin a safer place to drive–the Austin car accident lawyers of Ramos James Law, PLLC, are going to explore how to be a better driver in 2021 with these five New Year’s resolutions.
1. Prepare Before the Ride
Tardiness can be our own worst enemy, especially when driving. While Austin traffic can be hectic at times, it is important to not let your emotions get in the way of sound judgment.
Prevent a car accident by planning your route ahead of departure, and give yourself plenty of time to get to your destination. Doing so reduces the risk of speeding-related car accidents, and if everyone does their part, we can all work together toward making 2021 safer for everyone on the road.
2. Lay Off of Social Media While Driving
Distracted driving is one of the leading factors that cause severe car collisions. In fact, the state of Texas experienced a total number of 377 fatalities as a direct result of distracted drivers.
No playlist, Instagram post, Tik-Tok, tweet, or text message is too important to pay attention to when you are behind the wheel. Paying your full, undivided attention to the road in front of you can go a long way to developing attentive driving skills in 2021.
3. Avoid Driving Under the Influence at All Costs
Operating a vehicle under the influence of alcohol or drugs such as marijuana, cocaine, or even certain prescription medications elevates the risk of getting into a catastrophic car accident. Any of these particular factors can inhibit your decision making behind the wheel, making you a danger to yourself and others.
If you are planning a night out where alcohol is involved, it is wise to make accommodations to get home by appointing a good, sober friend or family member as a designated driver or using a rideshare service like Lyft.
4. Use Your Turn Signals
Communication with other drivers is the key to avoiding a collision, regardless if you are driving in very hectic traffic or in the calmest of settings. Your turn signals will be your best friend when attempting to change lanes or make safe turns.
In order to do your part in keeping Texas roads safe, it is critical that you flip on your turn signals at least 100 feet before you initiate and commit to your turn or lane change. This gives other drivers plenty of time to react accordingly.
5. Practice Better Sleeping Habits
Driver fatigue is another key factor that led to deadly, unwanted collisions in the last few years. It occurs when a driver is either feeling too tired or too ill to drive, reducing their ability to navigate safely while affecting their decision-making.
The best defense to avoiding these types of car accidents is to give your mind and body the adequate amount of time it needs to recharge–at least 6-8 hours of sleep daily and plenty of bed rest if you are sick.
Sometimes Accidents Happen, and When They Do, Our Austin Car Accident Lawyers are Ready to Serve You
When an unexpected occurrence like a car accident shifts your entire life around due to catastrophic, life-altering injuries, you need to seek civil justice by consulting a trustworthy attorney like the ones at Ramos James Law, PLLC.
Our Austin-based personal injury attorneys will walk you through the entire legal process and evaluate what legal options are available to you in order to obtain the financial compensation you deserve.
If you have been involved in a car or truck accident, do not hesitate to seek justice. Contact Ramos James Law, PLLC today to schedule your FREE case review!
Posted on Monday, July 13th, 2020 at 9:39 pm
It’s a well-known issue in Texas that Austin traffic can be rather hair-raising.
Allstate’s “America’s Best Drivers Report”, which ranks the 200 largest cities in the country by driver safety, listed Austin at number 159, falling far in safety in comparison to other Texas cities like San Antonio and Fort Worth.
However, Austin drivers aren’t entirely at fault. The city’s home to some of Texas’ deadliest stretches of highway, and numerous high-fatality pedestrian crossings. In fact, in 2018, Austin witnessed 74 traffic fatalities, many of which took place at well-known accident hotspots.
Pedestrian deaths make up a considerable amount of these incidents, accounting for about a third of all motor vehicle fatalities in Austin.
At Ramos James Law, PLLC, our car accident attorneys feel that any traffic death is one too many, which is why we want to express the importance of taking caution when traveling through dangerous intersections in the city of Austin.
Dangerous Intersections in Austin to Be Aware Of
- Trinity and E. 7th Street
This spot is by far one of the worst intersections for pedestrian accidents, not just in Austin, but throughout all of Texas. This intersection was the site of 40 pedestrian crashes, with 42 injuries between 2012 and 2015, making it the top offender for pedestrian incidents in the state.
In an attempt to reduce pedestrian accident rates, the city of Austin came up with the Pedestrian Safety Action Plan. It studied the city’s pedestrian crash rates and suggested solutions for improved safety, including building sidewalks where needed and performing necessary sidewalk maintenance, signal adjustments, increased police surveillance, and speeding enforcement.
- Riverside Drive and S. Pleasant Valley Road
The southeast intersection of Riverside and S. Pleasant Valley is considered one of the most distressing in the city. According to the Texas Department of Transportation crash data, there were 68 separate incidents at this intersection between 2012 and 2015, causing at least 52 injuries.
This location is included in the city’s Top Crash Location Priorities, which is a list of dangerous street crossings in Austin that are designated for improvements.
- Parmer Lane and N. Lamar Boulevard
This site witnessed 56 accidents and 45 injuries including one fatality between 2012 and 2015. The city has introduced safety improvements at this intersection, leading to a 43% decrease in accidents. Despite this, the intersection’s dangerous reputation lives on. In September 2018, the area was the scene of a deadly accident that killed a pedestrian.
- Cesar Chavez Street and I-35
Roads that intersect with highway service roads often generate deadlier accidents due to the high speeds involved. But at Cesar Chavez and I-35, other factors make it hazardous, such as pedestrian activity, downtown congestion, and its contiguity to bars and nightlife districts. As a matter of fact, in 2018, this area was the site of a high-profile accident that led to two separate alcohol-related criminal charges and one fatality.
The I-35 corridor has been on the Austin Transportation Department’s radar for a while now, and the northbound side of this intersection is also listed as one of the city’s Top Crash Location Priorities.
- Highway 183 and Loyola Lane
Along with I-35, 183 is one of the highest-reporting roads for serious accidents in the Austin area.
The intersection of 183 and Loyola had a total of 28 crashes in 2012. Those numbers ranked at number two on the list of the city’s top 25 crash locations on its 2012 Traffic Fatality Report. To this day, the location is still a generator for dangerous accidents; in the past couple of years, it has been the site of both a fatal car crash and a police chase that resulted in a collision.
How to Deal with Hazardous Intersections
While the city has aimed to fix some of these dangerous intersections, it’s probably unrealistic that drivers are able to completely avoid these areas until improvements are finished. That being the case, it’s on you to drive responsibly to ensure your safety and that of others on the road.
Here are some tips that can go a long way in keeping you and others out of harm’s way:
- Avoid speeding through yellow lights.
- Stay attentive when crossing through intersections. Avoid distractions including using your phone, applying makeup, or eating while driving.
- Use turn signals appropriately to alert other drivers around you.
- Proceed with caution through pedestrian crosswalks. Always yield to pedestrians.
- Keep a safe distance between your vehicle and the car in front of you. Don’t tailgate.
Even if you always drive safely, the reality is that there’s only so much you can do about other drivers on the road.
If you or a loved one have been involved in an accident because of another driver’s negligence, let Ramos James Law, PPLC, be your helping hand towards getting justice and sufficient compensation.
Contact us today at (512) 537-3369 to discover your options and to ensure that dangerous drivers are liable for their negligence.
Posted on Tuesday, June 30th, 2020 at 8:20 pm
On the night of Thursday, June 25th, a fatal rollover accident occurred that left one individual dead.
Details About the Car Accident
According to Austin PD, the accident happened around 7:15 p.m. on the 2600 block of North Lamar Boulevard in Central Austin.
Austin-Travis County EMS transported the individual to the nearest hospital where they were later confirmed deceased by an Austin PD watch commander as a result of the severe injuries sustained.
The exact details of how the accident occurred are still being investigated by local authorities.
A Brief Overview of Rollover Accidents
Rollover accidents are known to be one of the most lethal types of car accidents imaginable. If one were to survive such an accident, the potential injuries can be devastating to the human body and the mind alike.
Relatively, the larger and narrower a vehicle might be, the more at risk the driver is in being involved in a catastrophic rollover accident. This is because of the vehicle’s high center of gravity.
Generally speaking, there are two different types of different rollover accidents that can occur: tripped rollovers and untripped rollovers.
- Tripped Rollovers
A tripped rollover occurs whenever a vehicle “trips” over an object on the road, causing it to lose its balance and rollover or crash into a physical object. Around 95% of these types of accidents are classified as a tripped rollover.
- Untripped Rollovers
An untripped rollover can occur as a result of a driver error or lack of proper timing when turning. Notable factors that can lead to an untripped rollover include, but are not limited to:
- Extremely sharp turns
- Awkward swerving
- Untimely vehicle maneuver
- Unusual, impaired, and/or reckless driving behavior
- Unsafe road conditions as a result of faulty design, lack of necessary signals, or weather conditions
Austin Car Accident Lawyers Ready to Serve Car Accident Victims
When a tragedy strikes and takes the life of a loved one, it can be a traumatic time for surviving family members, both emotionally and financially.
The Austin car accident attorneys of Ramos James Law, PLLC can help surviving family members with open arms in determining what legal options for financial relief are available to you and your family in order to start a path to recovery.
If you were seriously injured or lost a loved one due to a devastating car accident, do not hesitate to reach out to Ramos James Law, PLLC today.
Source: CBS Austin
Posted on Wednesday, January 15th, 2020 at 1:43 am
As we begin a new decade, we all have particular resolutions that are hard to commit to at first. But one resolution we should all commit and stick to in 2020 is to become better drivers.
Sadly, at least one person has died on Texas roads every day since November 7th, 2000, according to the Texas Tribune. The article – from April of 2019 – mentioned that Texas has led the nation in traffic deaths. Though these facts may seem disheartening, it should also serve as a motivator to drive much more cautiously to protect ourselves, our loved ones, and others on the road.
U.S. Car Accident Statistics from the Previous Decade
As we enter a new year and decade, we as drivers should be fully aware of the statistics from previous years so that we can make better decisions every time we get behind the wheel. Some of those most startling statistics include:
- Over the last two decades, speeding has been the leading contributor in approximately one-third of motor vehicle accident fatalities. (NHTSA)
- 66 percent of traffic fatalities were caused by aggressive driving. (Safemotorist.com)
- 58 percent of police-report fatal car accidents nationwide involved only one vehicle. (SaferAmerica)
- 1 out of 3 people text while driving. (Driver Knowledge)
- Nearly 1 in every 3 traffic accident-related deaths in the U.S. involved a drunk driver in 2019. (CDC)
- 29 lives are lost each day in the United States as a result of drunk driving.
- About 130,000 individuals are injured each year in truck accidents. (TruckAccidents.org)
- 48 percent of passengers killed in vehicle accidents were unrestrained. (NHTSA)
- Of the nearly 6 million accidents reported each year in the United States, 22 percent are weather-related. (FHWA)
These alarming numbers should help us recognize that numerous lives throughout the country are affected and that accidents can ruin the lives of the victims and their loved ones.
Whether it’s to seek justice and compensation for a traumatic personal injury or the loss of a loved one, it is important to find the kind of lawyer you can count on to lead you towards recovery from the physical, emotional, and mental anguish that follows a catastrophic car accident.
Types of Injuries That Can Occur as a Result of a Car Accident
The different injuries that result from a car accident tend to be as varied as the individual circumstances of every crash, but there are certain kinds of injuries that are more common than others. While some car accident injuries may heal within a matter of days there are many serious types which can lead to permanent changes in the victim and result in some degree of physical disability.
Some of the most common injuries include:
- Scrapes and cuts
- Brain injuries
- Broken ribs, arms, legs, or hips
- Head and or spinal injuries such as herniated disc
- Knee trauma
Though you have no control over other drivers you share the road with, there are a number of safety measures you can take to decrease your chances of getting involved or injured in an accident.
Tips for Better Protecting Yourself in 2020
Excellent driving habits to implement this upcoming year should include:
- Stop using your cell phone or other electronic devices when you get behind the wheel.
- Follow the rules of the road and drive the speed limit.
- You and your passengers should ALWAYS use your seatbelt.
- Never drive under the influence of drugs or alcohol
- Children should be placed in proper seating until they are of age.
- Be extra vigilant when driving in school zones, around pedestrians, or near bicyclists.
- Motorcyclists should always wear a helmet.
- Teach your teen valuable driver-safety habits.
While this is far from being a complete list of all driving habits you should resolve to follow this year, they would definitely make for a strong start to 2020.
Suffered a car accident injury? Ramos James Law is ready to fight for you!
If you have been the victim of a serious motor vehicle accident, know that you do not need to face the mental, physical, and emotional stress of your situation alone. Ramos James Law is on your side and ready to fight for the justice you deserve.
Our mission is to provide quality legal services to victims of car accidents and personal injuries when they have nowhere else to turn to. You deserve a competent and qualified Austin car accident lawyer. You deserve Ramos James Law.
Do not hesitate to contact our Austin personal injury law firm today at (512) 537-3369 to receive a FREE consultation.
Posted on Thursday, December 19th, 2019 at 5:56 pm
As 2019 comes to an end, we begin to look forward to the coming decade. We set resolutions for weight loss, self-care, and developing healthier habits, but often overlook setting goals for one of the most integral parts of our daily lives: driving.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), 6,734,000 motor vehicle accidents and 2,710,100 injuries caused by motor vehicles were reported in 2018. Of these accidents, 36,500 resulted in fatalities, making the U.S. one of the leading countries in crash deaths worldwide.
At Ramos James Law, PLLC, your Austin personal injury attorney does not want you to be another statistic. The National Safety Council (NSA) states that 90% of car crashes are causes of human error. The following are a few habits to develop for the new year to make your daily drives a little safer.
One of the leading causes of accidents among Americans is tardiness. You rush from place to place thinking you have enough time, only to get stuck in traffic you had not taken into account. You run late and pass cars, move from lane to lane, and speed down the road. Each time this occurs, you are drastically increasing your chances of being involved in a motor vehicle accident. Make a new year’s resolution to depart to your destinations earlier this coming year.
Avoid Distracted Driving
Distracted driving is one of the fastest rising causes of accidents. Those five seconds of responding to a text or selecting a song are the equivalent to driving the distance of a football field blindfolded. The same goes for eating or drinking in the car, personal grooming, and GPS tracking while driving. Give yourself more time to groom and eat at home or work, create driving playlists, and leave your phone on silent while driving to avoid distractions.
NEVER Drive under the Influence
This is easy to disregard. No one believes they would drive drunk; however, two out of three Americans will be involved in a drunk driving accident in their lifetime. Drunk driving is so prevalent in the U.S. that it takes an American’s life every 52 minutes. The same goes for drivers under the influence of illegal and controlled substances. With transportation services like Lyft and Uber on the rise, make one of your new year’s resolutions to consume responsibly, and use these services as needed.
As The City of Austin’s population continues to grow, the number of drivers on the road increases everyday. While you may not be the cause of an accident, another driver might, and these tips can help you protect you and your loved ones. Remain alert at all times and make these small, potentially life-saving changes part of your new year’s resolutions.
If you are injured in a car accident due to the negligence of another driver, contact Ramos James, PLLC, your Austin personal injury attorney, at 512-537-3369 to schedule a free consultation.