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TX accident lawyerLate last month, four people were injured in a car accident on Highway 71 in Austin, with first responders mentioning dangerous road conditions after a rainstorm as a possible contributing factor. While South Texas drivers are rarely exposed to the dangers of winter snowstorms that plague states further to the north, rainy conditions can create serious hazards of their own, making it important to take steps to promote safety on the roads.

The Driving Hazards of Texas Rainstorms

Throughout the year, drivers in South Texas are exposed to severe weather conditions, both from weather fronts traveling east across the U.S. and tropical storms that develop in the Gulf of Mexico. Heavy rainfall can affect road safety in a number of ways, primarily related to reduced visibility and slippery or flooded road surfaces. In order to lower your risk of getting in an accident, you should take the following safety precautions:

  • Make sure your car is ready for the road conditions. This includes checking your tire tread, keeping your brakes maintained, and ensuring that your lights, windshield wipers, and defoggers are all working properly.
  • Use your lights when driving in the rain. Due to decreased visibility during a downpour, it is important to turn on your regular-beam headlights whenever you are driving in the rain, no matter the time of day or how light or dark it is outside.
  • Travel at safe speeds. Wet roads are more dangerous for drivers traveling at high speeds. In many cases, it is best to reduce your speed below the posted speed limit during or after a rainfall so that you can maintain better control of your car.
  • Avoid sharp turns and braking. Similarly, it is best to keep most driving actions slow and gradual, including turning a corner or coming to a stop. Sharp adjustments can often send your vehicle into a skid from which it may be difficult to recover.
  • Be careful of standing water. Even a fairly shallow pool of water on the road can significantly increase the risk of losing control and causing an accident. Whenever possible, you should steer around standing water, or consider taking an alternate route entirely.

Contact a New Braunfels Car Accident Lawyer

Even when rainy conditions are a factor in an accident, if you are injured, you still have the right to pursue compensation from another negligent driver who fails to take the necessary precautions to protect your safety. At The Bettersworth Law Firm, we can help you gather evidence pointing to the other driver’s fault and present your case for recovering damages. Contact a New Braunfels personal injury attorney today at 830-606-0404 for a free consultation.

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TX injury lawyerAfter a 12-hour period in late October in which there were four different car accidents involving pedestrians, San Antonio residents have voiced concerns about how common these accidents are in the area. In total, 46 pedestrians had been killed in San Antonio car accidents from the start of 2020 through October 23, according to local law enforcement. With this in mind, it is important that pedestrians and drivers alike take steps to reduce the risk of these accidents, and that they know where to turn for help if they are injured.

Causes of San Antonio Pedestrian Accidents

Of the four accidents mentioned above, in one case the victim was walking at night and wearing dark clothing, and in more than one case the victim was attempting to cross the street without a crosswalk. However, local residents suggest that drivers also contribute to the danger to pedestrians by failing to slow down even when there is a crosswalk.

Research from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) supports the prevalence of all of these contributing factors in pedestrian accidents, as well as other factors including alcohol and drug intoxication and distractions from phones and other electronic devices. The NHTSA also reports that pedestrian accidents are much more common in urban areas like San Antonio.

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TX injury lawyerOn March 13, 2020, on the heels of Gov. Abbott’s declaration of disaster for the state of Texas, the state Supreme Court authored an emergency order tolling (pausing) all “service and filing deadlines” in civil cases until June 1. This means that any deadline for filing a lawsuit or serving process on a party to a lawsuit is extended until June 1 - usually a good thing for those contemplating filing suit - but there has been some confusion about just how far the order extends. If you are in a position to file a civil lawsuit, you need to be aware of what your position will likely be now that the statute of limitations is no longer being paused.

Do Not Miss The Statutory Window

The Texas civil statute of limitations is a law governing the amount of time in which a person can file a lawsuit before it is barred. It is generally understood that there must be a time limit on lawsuits, because over time, evidence decays, and memories become faded - if too much time elapses between an event and filing suit over injuries sustained, there will eventually be no evidence to prove liability. However, the time limit itself depends on the offense in question - for example, most personal injury lawsuits have a limitation period of two years, while a lawsuit for defamation must be filed within one year.

Very often, an injured party will fail to file their lawsuit within the statutory period, for one reason or another (the most common is simply not realizing how short a time they have in which to file suit). If you fail to file in time, the lawsuit will be forever barred - that is, you can never file it again, as you will have missed the proverbial window. The statute begins to run when a cause of action accrues - in other words, when something happens that might be grounds for a lawsuit - but very often, the injured party will not be told about it.

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Posted on in Personal Injury

TX car accident attorneyRecently, a man was struck by a car on Rundberg Road, in north Austin, but the vehicle that struck him failed to stop and administer aid. The man was taken to a nearby hospital, while he was pronounced deceased on arrival. While no other details were released at the time about either the deceased man or the vehicle that struck him, it is important to understand that the victim (or the family of the victim) in a hit-and-run accident has options to try and seek compensation for what they have gone through. Enlisting an attorney to help with that is also a good idea.

High Frequency, High Stakes

Texas has one of the higher hit-and-run accident totals in the country, partly because of its sheer population, but partly for other reasons. For example, Texas is one of the states that permits speed limits of up to 85 mph in certain areas, which in turn can breed recklessness, especially when alcohol is involved. In addition, the majority of hit-and-run victims are pedestrians, and Texas boasts a large pedestrian population, between its cities and the rural areas in which public transport is infrequent or inefficient.

It is important to understand that leaving the scene of an accident is a crime in Texas - the Transport Code specifically states that leaving the scene of an accident where serious bodily injury or death results, without stopping to render aid, is a felony, with lesser injuries being punishable by between 1 and 5 years in jail. If the person who struck you is caught, they will very often (though not always) be charged with a crime - but you will still be able to file a civil lawsuit against them as well. The Fifth Amendment right to be free from double jeopardy only applies to two criminal proceedings - a civil proceeding is a different animal and can proceed.

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TX accident lawyerA recent night proved tragic for a woman trying to cross San Pedro Avenue, just north of downtown San Antonio. She was struck while trying to cross the street, having just gotten off work and headed home. The driver did stop and attempt to render aid, but the woman still required transportation to a nearby hospital with serious injuries. Pedestrian accidents are all too common in San Antonio, and while the driver appears to have acted appropriately in this case, too many pedestrian accidents wind up causing injuries or even costing lives. If you have been injured by an allegedly negligent driver, you need an experienced attorney to help navigate the legal process with you.

High Rates in Texas

Texas traditionally has high rates of pedestrian accidents - partly because of its sheer size, but also because many Texas metropolitan areas are not well set up for pedestrian traffic. The think tank Smart Growth America, in its yearly Dangerous By Design report, names dangerous metropolitan areas, where infrastructure issues make it harder to walk or otherwise navigate a city without a vehicle. Most of the state’s major cities and metro areas - McAllen, San Antonio, Houston, Dallas, El Paso, and Austin - are listed in the top 50 most dangerous in the United States for 2019.

What this actually means is that these are the metropolitan areas that are most clearly designed for vehicles, rather than pedestrians. Lights may not last long enough for some pedestrians to make it across the road. Necessary crosswalks or curb cuts may be missing or damaged. The possibility of danger is higher in these metro areas than it should be because the city in question has not changed (and nor have its drivers).

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The sooner you call, the sooner we can build your case, secure evidence and get maximum compensation for your injuries.

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