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TX car accident lawyerA large portion of Texas enjoys fairly warm weather for most of the year, but winter temperatures sometimes do happen, even as far south as Houston or San Antonio. In early February 2020, snow flurries have led to fun and memories - but have also led to icy roads and crashes. In Austin, parts of North Loop 360 and East U.S. 290 were closed, and in Round Rock, RM 1431 saw two crashes recently. While law enforcement and the Texas Department of Transportation were able to manage the majority of issues on the roads, this is by no means guaranteed. If you are in an auto accident where the weather could have played a role, it is a good idea to understand what options you might have for compensation.

What People Do In Weather

The U.S. Federal Highway Administration’s Road Weather Management Program (RWMP) estimates that as many as 21 percent of all auto accidents are weather-related, whether rain, sleet, fog, snow, wind, or another type. On average, almost 5,000 fatalities happen every year as a result of these crashes - because of weather, obviously, but more specifically because of certain factors in driving due to weather; namely, how individual drivers approach unusual or sudden weather patterns.

For example, heavy snowfall can reduce the rate of speed on a freeway by as much as 40 percent - but there will always be some driver who continues to drive, often aggressively, at a rate of speed that would be fine on smooth, dry roads, but is too fast when ice or rain is present. Auto accident cases often turn on the “reasonableness” (or lack thereof) of someone’s actions, and if it can be shown that the driver’s speed plus the weather was unreasonable, they will often wind up being liable for any injuries they caused.

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TX accident lawyerThe region of Texas between Austin and Round Rock has been one of the fastest-growing in the state in recent years, but with growth comes higher crime and traffic rates most of the time. However, the city of Round Rock has seemingly found a way to reduce both traffic accidents and attendant fatalities, even as the area continues to grow and change. If you do wind up involved in a traffic accident in Round Rock, know that the laws have been updated and strengthened so as to help those who still experience crashes.

Overhaul of Round Rock Traffic Enforcement

Statistics from the Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) show that collisions in the city proper have reduced significantly - April 2017-March 2018 saw 8 traffic fatalities, while April 2018-March 2019 saw just one. Collisions overall in Round Rock also dropped by roughly 5 percent, which does not sound like a lot, but is enough to push injury and fatality counts down enough to be statistically significant. Even one life saved is a positive, but Round Rock law enforcement continues to make positive changes.

Multiple initiatives have been started, each with the aim of lowering traffic fatalities. For example, Round Rock police have created three different, discrete units aimed at enforcement of different types of traffic laws - DWI, trucking regulations and enforcement, and education/community outreach. Between the use of social media and increased policing in so-called “collision reduction zones,” law enforcement says it is committed to making Round Rock a safe place to travel. None of this means that accidents do not happen, however, and if you are unfortunate enough to experience one, it is still important to understand your options.

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Posted on in Car Wrecks

TX rollover accident lawyerRecently, a San Antonio police officer was injured in a rollover crash that took place on I-10 West near Callaghan Road, having struck the guard barrels dividing lanes on the interstate. Officer Noel Ortiz managed to escape the crash with only minor scratches and bruises, but most of the time, if you are involved in a rollover accident, you may not be so lucky, as they can be very deadly. Contacting a dedicated auto accident lawyer can help you sort out what to do to seek compensation.

High Percentage of Fatalities

While any automobile accident can be potentially dangerous, rollover accidents routinely cause a higher percentage of fatalities because of the sheer amount of weight, glass and metal involved - if someone is involved in, say, a head-on collision, they will not have to contend with the inversion of their vehicle or the subsequent total loss of control. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) estimates that roughly two percent of all car crashes are rollovers, but nearly 35 percent of all traffic fatalities in passenger vehicle crashes occur in rollovers.

There are numerous causes for this, including the usual factors that can contribute to any accident - speeding and substance abuse chief among them. In addition, the vehicle type can be a factor (for example, vans or sport utility vehicles are notorious for tipping over due to their higher center of gravity), as well as location - more rollover accidents in Texas occur in rural areas, both due to higher speed limits in may locales and due to more routine driving opportunities (rollovers are almost more common in routine driving, given that drivers can get distracted or ‘zone out’ more easily).

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Posted on in Car Wrecks

TX accident lawyerTexas has weather that is often changing, especially during this time of year when rain or even snow can come out of nowhere. If you are in a car crash on Texas roads during the winter months, it is a definite possibility that poor weather or conditions have played a role in the accident occurring. Consulting an experienced attorney well versed in these types of cases is a good idea, as sometimes it can be difficult to tell whether you have a case or not.

Bad Weather Can Be Deadly

Statistics from the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) show very clearly that the risk of having an accident in poor weather is quite serious. “Weather-related” auto accidents in the years studied made up approximately 21 percent of all the crashes that occurred in the United States, and roughly 16 percent of the fatalities. Precipitation and wet pavement were the conditions that consistently impacted the highest number of traffic factors, both for drivers on the roads and for those planning around them. Examples include driver stopping distance and traction, but also traffic signal timing, road treatment strategy (to salt or not to salt?) and the like.

This may not sound like much, but the data averages out to a significant loss of life and overall casualty count, with over 5,000 killed and over 410,000 injured per year. That is a serious amount of potentially avoidable injury, with countless hours of productivity lost. Employers find their workforce tied up at one of the busiest times of the year in many industries. It is incumbent on every driver to exercise due caution when on the road in these types of conditions - however, many simply do not, and if you are injured by one of them, you may be able to make them regret it.

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Texas car crash attorneyOn October 3, 2017, US 90 in San Antonio was closed for hours as crews cleared debris from a single-vehicle accident that killed one person when she drifted and hit the guardrail. Other drivers struck the car as it flipped, but no other vehicle played a role in the accident itself. The woman was taken to University Hospital with critical injuries, but no one else was harmed. This type of accident is depressingly common in Texas and indeed in the U.S., for a myriad of reasons, and while no other drivers were harmed in this recent example, it is also depressingly common for injuries and fatalities to other drivers to be caused by these single-vehicle accidents.

Causes of Single-Vehicle Accidents

As one might imagine, there are many reasons single-vehicle accidents happen, though some are more foreseeable than others. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) published a series of statistics and fact sheets on this topic and found a variety of factors that can contribute to single-vehicle crashes. The most common issue  was substance abuse, especially alcohol, but many other issues such as poor road maintenance, speeding, weather conditions, or driver fatigue were also found to help cause these accidents.

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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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