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Lake Charles Personal Injury Law Blog

The problem of teen drinking and driving

Louisiana drivers have the responsibility to drive safely. This includes not getting behind the wheel when they are under the influence of alcohol. Unfortunately, many teenagers are not listening to the warnings and obvious risks of drinking and driving. According to the American Association for the Advancement of Science, thousands of teens are dying due to driving while impaired each year.

Teens may not realize the effects alcohol has on the body, specifically the brain. Alcohol lessens decision-making abilities, which further increases the chance that a teen would make a wrong choice about driving when they are not safe to do so. They may not realize the effects alcohol has on the brain. Everything is slowed down. The perception of this is not always felt by the person either, which leads them to believe they are okay. However, it will slow reaction time and prevent a person from being able to properly coordinate their movements.

Amnesia: Causes, symptoms and treatment

Amnesia is one of those conditions that has been romanticized by Hollywood and in books. However, for people in Louisiana who actually suffer from the condition, it is anything but a fairytale. Amnesia is a condition of the brain, and because the brain is not 100 percent understood yet, it means the condition is not either. According to Medical News Today, the general definition of amnesia is the inability to recall or retain memories.

It does not always present itself in the same way because there are different known types of amnesia. It can be temporary or permanent. It can lead to total memory loss or just partial loss. It can involve forgetting a specific incident only or bits and pieces of the past or learned information. It can also present as being able to remember the past but being unable to remember anything new. Most people with amnesia remember who they are and have a good sense of their own self, but there is one type of amnesia where a person does not remember anything about him or herself. Thankfully, it is very rare.

The causes of spinal cord injuries

Victims of car collisions and other types of accidents in Louisiana and throughout the nation may be left with serious injuries that can affect their lives for years to come. Spinal cord damage is just one type of catastrophic injury that may cause permanent damage to people who become involved in an accident. The fragile nerves of the spinal cord can be damaged when the hard, bony vertebrae is fractured, crushed, compressed or dislocated. These vertebrae press against or crush the fragile nerves that run through the spinal column. This may cause swelling, inflammation and bleeding. Fluid may begin to accumulate around the spinal cord, causing even more damage.

According to the Mayo Clinic, there are several common causes of spinal cord damage. Acts of violence, such as stabbings and gunshot wounds, as well as sports and recreation injuries are common causes. Falls are responsible for more than 25 percent of all spinal cord injuries in the United States. The most common cause of spinal nerve damage is caused by motor vehicle accidents, which account for 35 percent of all new injuries every year.

Study: Mild TBI may have long-lasting effects

When people are involved in an automobile collision, a slip-and-fall accident or have an object fall on their head, they may receive a traumatic brain injury. Traumatic brain damage can potentially cause long-term damage, which can make it difficult for people to return to work and engage in simple everyday activities. Although there have been many studies done on moderate to severe brain injuries, less research has shown the effects of mild brain injuries on victims.  A recent study published in Neurology found that even mild brain injuries can cause long-lasting cognitive damage in people who have been through minor accidents.

Up until recently, traditional screening devices did not show brain trauma in the white matter of the brain. Researchers found that a type of magnetic resonance imaging, known as diffusion tensor imaging, shows these areas. Healthy brains will appear orderly and structured on the scan, while any damage in cells will show with a varied brightness. This helps physicians pinpoint the area of injury.

Identifying the ‘fatal four’ in construction accidents

The construction industry is one of the most fatal in Louisiana and across the United States. In 2015, one in every five worker deaths were in the field of construction, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Out of the 4,379 people who were killed in workplace accidents that year, 21.4 percent or 937 died in construction. The leading causes of death in the field of construction are referred to as the ‘fatal four’. Researchers indicate that by eliminating the four major causes of construction site deaths, at least 602 lives would be saved each year. The Hale Law Firm understands that many construction site injuries and deaths are preventable, and that all workers are entitled to work in a safe environment.

Falls are the most common cause of death in the field of construction. Of the 937 people who lost their lives, 364 incidents involved falls. This includes people who fall from significant heights because they were not wearing the appropriate safety equipment or were working on unsupported scaffolding. People are at risk of a fall when they are working at least six feet off of the ground.

Toxic neighbors: Filing a claim after suffering from exposure

You have been living near a factory for some time, but you've recently realized that much of its waste seems to be emptying into your local creek. Although you believe the materials probably went through filtering, the people in your area have been coming down with unusual illnesses.

One of the potential causes for those illnesses is toxic exposure. If you are exposed to toxic waste or hazardous chemicals seeping into your water supply or infecting your land, that's a serious problem that could cause severe injuries or death.

How to spot the signs of road rage

If you have been annoyed with other drivers while navigating through traffic, you are not alone. Research published by AAA reported that as many as 80 percent of drivers in Louisiana and throughout the nation have admitted to experiencing anger while driving. Although this may be somewhat normal to become annoyed while stuck in traffic, aggressive driving involves dangerous behaviors that puts the lives of others in danger. Aggressive drivers have a disregard for other motorists’ safety, as well as their own.

While it is always important to be cautious when driving, you should also know how to spot the signs of an aggressive driver. These hazardous behaviors include the following:

  •          Tailgating or following too closely
  •          Speeding
  •          Excessive lane changing and cutting people off
  •          Running red lights and stop signs
  •          Honking and using inappropriate gestures
  •          Aggressive horn honking

How common are bus accidents?

With the wide variety of travel options available, you may choose to take a car, plane, bus or train to many destinations. While many people have a fear of flying, traveling by bus is generally considered a safe way to go. However, buses might not always be as safe as many people believe. If you have been involved in a bus accident in Louisiana or known someone who has, you may be wondering how common these incidents are. The Journalist Resource reports on studies showing just how safe buses really are.


Maritime injuries: Understanding the Jones Act

Working on a vessel can be a dangerous profession. If an injury occurs, maritime workers may have to seek help through a different route than traditional workers’ compensation. The Jones Act creates such an avenue for maritime employees to seek compensation but you need to understand how the system works.

Traumatic brain injuries: What you should know

Whether you are the victim of a serious car collision or a minor fender bender, you may receive a traumatic brain injury as a result of the accident. Brain injuries are involved in approximately 30 percent of all injury deaths in the United States, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Motor vehicle accidents are the third leading cause of TBI-related hospitalizations, emergency room visits and deaths. By understanding how to spot the signs of traumatic brain damage, you may be able to seek immediate medical attention and maximize your chances of recovery.

Any sudden impact to the head can cause the brain to reverberate within the hard skull cavity. This can cause brain bleeding, bruising and inflammation. While some people are able to identify the signs of brain damage immediately, others may take days, weeks or months to acknowledge the problem. During this time, the brain damage may worsen, as the tissue continues to swell and put pressure on the brain.

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