Categories
Traffic Safety

Your headlights aren’t good enough

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, well known for crash testing cars to see how well they protect people in an accident, tested the performance of 82 headlights on 31 different cars.

The reports were dismal. Only one car tested was rated “Good.” And that was just with LED headlights. The Prius equipped with headlights passed the test with a Good rating, when it was equipped with LED lights and high beam assist. The other 30 cars failed, and the Prius also failed when equipped with Halogen lights.

LED lights do better on the tests than Halogen lights in general.

The IIHS thinks that headlights shoot illuminate at least 330 feet straight ahead. Motorists going at least 60 mph might not have enough light to see hazards in time to stop.

 

Read more here

 

Categories
Traffic Safety

Seatbelt usage will reduce injury in car accidents

Seat belts are extremely effective in reducing injuries and the severity of those injuries passengers suffer in car accidents. Despite this, many people choose not to buckle up. There are many reasons that show why this is a terrible idea. First, the stats.

  • Seat beat usage reduces injury by up to 50%.
  • Airbags are not a replacent for a properly secured seat belt, but an airbag + seatbelt is the best protection
  • 2.3 million people are treated in emergency rooms each year due to car accidents
  • Younger passengers are less likely to wear a seatbelt
  • Men are less likely to wear one than women
  • People in rural areas are less likely to wear a seatbelt than those from urban areas.

So, the evidence shows, it’s a good idea to wear your seat belt.

How wearing a seatbelt can destroy your car accident case

But that’s not all. There is a legal reason to wear your seat belt – and I’m not talking about getting a ticket for not wearing your seat belt. If you are injured in an accident caused by someone else, and you were not wearing a seatbelt, the other side will try to use that against you.

In other words, they will claim that your injuries were partially caused by you. Yes, you were partially at fault for your injuries, because you did not wear a seat belt as is required by law. In California, this is known as the seatbelt defense. You can read about it here in California’s jury instructions. If they can prove:

  1. That a working seatbelt was available
  2. That a reasonably careful person in your situation would have worn one
  3. That you failed to wear a seat belt
  4. Your injuries would have been less severe or avoided altogether
  5. Then they may have an affirmative defense that will reduce or eliminate your award all together.

So you see, it isn’t just a good idea to wear a seat belt. It is imperative that you do so. You must wear a seatbelt on every trip, no matter how short. Even if you’re going across the street. Especially if you cross an intersection, where many serious accidents occur.

So you must wear a seatbelt on every trip, no matter how short. Also, require everyone in your car to wear one before you even put the car in gear.

Categories
Traffic Safety

Is your car recalled, or in need of repairs?

San Diego Car Accident Attorney Discusses Used Vehicles Under Recall

According to research conducted by Carfax, there were 2 million cars advertised in 2012 … that were under a product recall and in need of repairs.

And those were just from the cars sold online that Carfax was able to catalog. The real number is actually much higher.

So how does Carfax even know which cars have not been repaired? Because car manufacturers and dealers track the Vehicle Identification Number of each car that is repaired.

So is selling a car that is under recall but not repaired, a good thing or a bad thing for you?

Both.

It’s bad because vehicles with potential defects large enough to warrant a recall are not repaired, and you may end up driving yourself, family and friends in that car.

On the other hand, if you are aware of the recall, you can actually use that as a bargaining chip.

Either way, it’s a good idea to check whether cars you are looking to buy, or already own, are under a vehicle recall and needs to be fixed. You can start by using the following site:

http://recall.carfax.com

How can used-car dealers get away with selling vehicles currently under recall?

Federal laws prohibit sales of new cars with unfixed recalls. Rental car companies can’t rent unfixed cars. But used cars? There are no protections from unfixed recalled vehicles.

It’s known as the used-car loophole. Used cars with faulty Takata airbags and bad GM ignition switches can be sold on the used car lot with no repercussions from federal laws.

Safety advocates say this loophole is putting lives at risk, while used car dealers argue the ban would reduce values of cars for owners. Some estimates are as high as $1,200.00 in reduced car value if the law was changed.

Stop-drive warnings

Most recalls do not involve a defect serious enough to ground the car. However, there are some recalls that receive a “stop-drive” notice, meaning the defect is so dangerous you need to stop driving. Regulators advise dealers and rental car companies not to sell or rent the vehicle, but they have no power to enforce this.

The NHTSA and NADA would like for all recalls on cars to be fixed before the car is sold, or rented. That is unlikely to happen even with a passed law.

Un-repaired vehicles can contribute to injuries sustained in car accidents

The FTC is being sued because it allows car dealers to advertise used cars as being safe even when there are potentially fatal defects with a recall on the vehicle.

So a vehicle can kill you, but the dealer can argue that the car is safe even if the repair is not complete. So how do you protect yourself?

Go to Safecar and see if the car you are looking to buy is under a potentially dangerous recall.

Categories
Traffic Safety

Turning left over double solid yellow lines in California

San Diego Car Accident lawyer discusses what happens when you turn left over double yellow lines

In California, what happens when the road has double yellow lines? Can you turn across them?

Yes, if there are two solid yellow lines, you can still turn left across them, as long as a few rules are followed. This is important because if you are in a car accident and your car or the other car crossed these double yellow lines, these rules can help determine who caused the accident.

Solid double yellow lines indicates the center of the road with two way traffic.

If there are solid double yellow lines dividing road, it means simply that you cannot pass a car in front of you by crossing these lines (and driving to the left of the lines).

On some roads there may be two yellow lines, but one will be solid while the other will be broken. If the broken line is on your side of the road, you can pass a slower car in front of you.

Car accidents involving solid double yellow lines in California

However if both lines are solid and are close together, you cannot cross those lines for any reason unless:

  • You are turning left at an intersection. Be sure not to turn too soon (before the actual intersection). You also must slow down, signal early, and move your car as far left in the lane as possible. If not, you might be cited for unsafe turn movements (Vehicle Code 22107)
  • You may turn into into or out of a private road or driveway.
  • Into carpool lanes
  • You have to because construction signs, or workers direct you to cross to the other side, around any construction happening.

Now, if there are two sets of solid double yellow lines at least 2 feet or more (4 total lines), this is considered a barrier and you cannot cross that to make any turn.

San Diego car accident attorneys is ready to help you

Were you injured in an accident involving solid double lines? If you’re in California, we are ready to help you. Give us a call immediately or fill out a contact form on this page.