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texas car crash lawyerTwo men are lucky to be alive after their SUV struck a utility pole and flipped over. According to the San Antonio Police Department, the accident occurred on the Northwest Side at about 2 a.m. July 21, 2021. In addition to the police, the EMS and fire department also responded to the accident, which took place at the intersection of Callaghan and Ingram roads. Both men suffered only minor injuries and were treated by EMS at the scene. While police do not believe that alcohol played a part in the car accident, they do believe that distracted driving may have been to blame.

Distracted driving has long been an issue not only in San Antonio but also across Texas and the rest of the U.S. As a result, Texas has made it illegal to text while behind the wheel. Additionally, some cities in Texas have prohibited any type of cell phone use while driving. But regardless of the law, texting, like any type of activity that distracts the driver, is unsafe.

Cell Phone Laws in Texas

Since using a cell phone while driving can be so dangerous, Texas has implemented laws to reduce distracted driving. While you are behind the wheel you should never:

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New Braunfels TX personal injury lawyerIf you have been injured and someone else is at fault, that person is likely responsible for paying your medical bills, and you can hold them accountable by filing a personal injury claim. However, even in the best-case scenario, it can take several weeks or months to settle a claim and receive the compensation you are entitled to. In the meantime, you may need significant medical treatment, and you may be concerned about how to cover the costs before you have the funds from a settlement or verdict.

Health Insurance and Subrogation

In most cases, an injury victim’s health insurance provider will pay for the costs of all covered medical and surgical expenses related to the injuries. This helps ensure that victims can get treatment when they need it without worrying about personal financial hardship. However, insurance providers are usually entitled to reimbursement for the benefits they pay through a process called subrogation.

This means that when an injury victim is granted compensation through a settlement or verdict, a portion of that compensation will go to the health insurance provider. Under Texas law, this portion is limited to the actual cost of the benefits provided minus the victim’s attorney fees, or half of the total recovery minus the victim’s attorney fees, whichever is less. This means that if your award includes any compensation for lost wages or pain and suffering, you should be able to keep that portion for yourself.

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TX injury lawyerIf you are injured in a car crash with a drunk driver, you may assume that the driver bears full responsibility for their intoxication and the resulting damages. However, according to Texas law, bars, restaurants, and other businesses that serve alcoholic beverages have a responsibility to do so safely. Under certain circumstances, if a business fails to uphold this responsibility, they can be found partially liable in a personal injury case involving a driver that the business served.

Texas Dram Shop Laws

Legal statutes addressing a business’s liability for damages related to alcohol intoxication are commonly referred to as “dram shop” laws. In Texas, such laws apply in two kinds of circumstances. The first is when an individual or business with an alcohol license or permit overserves a customer. In order for the business to be liable in this case, there must be evidence that the server knew that the person being served was already intoxicated to the point of posing a danger to self and others and that alcohol intoxication was the cause of the damages for which compensation is being sought.

The other type of circumstance is when a business knowingly serves alcohol to a minor under the age of 18. In this case, it is not necessary to demonstrate that the business overserved the minor, only that they were responsible for serving any of the drinks that led to the minor’s intoxication, which subsequently caused injuries or damages. Liability under these circumstances extends not only to businesses with an alcohol license but also to social hosts or any adults over the age of 21 who serve a minor or who allow a minor to be served on their premises, provided that the adult is not the minor’s guardian or spouse.

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TX accident lawyerEach year in Texas, around 15,000 people suffer serious, incapacitating injuries in car accidents, leaving them temporarily or permanently unable to walk or perform other activities as they did before the crash. Some of the most severe incapacitating injuries involve damage to the victim’s spinal cord. If you have suffered a spinal cord injury due to another driver’s negligence, you may be entitled to substantial compensation.

Physical Limitations From Spinal Cord Injuries

In a car crash, spinal cord injuries are most likely to happen due to the crushing force of the collision between vehicles, or subsequent impacts when a vehicle enters a rollover or a driver or passenger is ejected from the vehicle. Because the spinal cord contains nerves that control a wide range of bodily functions, damage to the spinal cord can have far-reaching physical effects. These include:

  • Pain and stinging - Lesser nerve damage may initially result in sharp pains and intense discomfort.
  • Numbness and loss of sensation - Serious damage to the spinal cord can result in decreased sensitivity to touch and temperature, and in some cases, a total loss of feeling in the body parts affected.
  • Paralysis - Severe spinal cord injuries may also limit a person’s motor abilities, in some cases causing total paralysis from the neck or waist down.
  • Impairment of internal organs and body systems - The effects of spinal cord injuries can extend to the digestive, urinary, circulatory, and respiratory systems.

Spinal cord damage is very difficult to reverse, but it is possible to prevent further damage by seeking immediate medical attention after an accident and avoiding movement until medical professionals arrive to ensure you are safely transported to a hospital.

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TX accident lawyerIt can be difficult to understand what would lead a driver to travel the wrong way on a divided highway, but unfortunately, it does happen on a regular basis. Just recently, law enforcement reported a suspected wrong-way driving crash resulting in at least one fatality on I-35 in Austin, and hundreds of people die in wrong-way car crashes each year throughout the U.S. Understanding the causes of wrong-way driving accidents may help you avoid them or know how best to pursue compensation if you or a loved one is injured in such a crash.

Common Factors in Wrong-Way Collisions

In recent years, the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) published a special report on wrong-way driving crashes in the U.S. after conducting several investigations and extensive data analysis. Through their research, they identified a few common factors that contribute to fatal accidents involving wrong-way drivers on the highway, including:

  • Alcohol intoxication - The report found that at least 60 percent of wrong-way drivers were impaired by alcohol, with over half of those having a blood alcohol concentration of 0.15 or higher.
  • Time of day and week - The vast majority of the accidents studied occurred at night in conditions of low visibility, and a large number occurred on weekends.
  • Improper use of exit ramps - According to the results of the study, the largest number of wrong-way drivers on the highway entered using an exit ramp. Possible reasons for this include unclear signage; driver confusion, inexperience, or distraction; and intoxicating substances that impair a driver’s mental abilities. Other instances of wrong-way driving came from a driver missing an exit and making an illegal U-turn through an emergency turnaround.

With these factors in mind, it is important to stay alert for wrong-way drivers, especially on nights and weekends and in areas that you know have complicated entrance-exit interchanges or that are not clearly marked.

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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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