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Lake Charles Personal Injury Law Blog

What is a spinal cord injury?

Most people in Louisiana know that the spinal cord is an important part of the body but they may not fully understand what it is or does and how an injury to it may impact a person. Because there are so many situations that could contribute to a spinal cord injury, understanding this is important.

As explained by Johns Hopkins Medicine, a person may experience damage to the spinal cord in a motor vehicle accident, as the result of a birth injury or from a fall at work, at a public venue or elsewhere and more. The spinal cord is not one cord as the name may imply but a group of nerves that run through the vertebrae for protection, carrying vital messages from the brain to the rest of the body.

Watch out for crushing injuries and the life-threatening effects

A crush injury happens when there is an extreme force or pressure placed on a particular body part. The increased pressure results in several types of injuries including bruising, fractures, nerve injury, secondary infection, compartment syndrome, bleeding and others.

Immediately following a crushing injury, most people want to remove the pressure from the injured area. It's usually better not to do so without a medical provider present. The emergency medical team will have the right tools to prevent excessive bleeding, pain and other problems that are associated with crushing injuries.

What information should I get after an accident?

If you are involved in an accident, it is important that you try to maintain calm and get control over the situation. The information you gather at the scene can be very helpful to you in the future when trying to deal with insurance and pay for damages or medical bills. It will also help you when making a report with law enforcement.

USA Today recommends at least getting the license plate information if you cannot get anything else. However, you should try to get full information on the vehicle, including make, model and color. It is also important to get the driver's information. Get his or her name, address, phone number and insurance details.

What designates a vehicle as commercial?

When you hear the term "commercial vehicle," what comes to mind? Many people would say a large truck or a large vehicle. However, that is not fully encompassing all commercial vehicles under Louisiana law. The commercial vehicle designation has nothing to do with the size or weight of a vehicle. It is linked entirely to use.

According to the Office of Motor Vehicles, any vehicle used for business is designated as a commercial vehicle. This could be anything from a passenger car to a large cargo hauler. Vehicles that haul people as a business are also commercial vehicles. This includes buses and taxis. As long as the vehicle is being used for business purposes and is traveling on public roadways, it must be registered as a commercial vehicle. Registration as a commercial vehicle requires a special commercial plate.  

How do hurricanes affect offshore drilling?

Offshore drilling on a good day can be challenging. However, when a hurricane is heading towards Louisiana and the rig located in the Gulf, it can increase the danger immensely. Drilling in the Gulf Coast area is common because the waters are nice. They do not suffer from icing issues because they are generally warm. The downside, though, is they are a target for hurricanes and other tropical storms.

If you are on a rig in the Gulf and a hurricane is coming, it helps to be aware of how this will impact your operations. According to The Atlantic, oil companies react in a few different ways to an incoming storm. They will reduce the number of employees on site or remove them completely. Some companies will relocate operations. Hurricanes, though, are unpredictable. It is never really known exactly where they will go until it happens. This can make it hard to determine how to react to an incoming storm.

Why is proper safety training important?

Regardless of where you work in Louisiana, your employer should have given you some safety training when you first began your job. This safety training provided you with a good foundation for staying safe while at work and understanding the safety risks that are present in your work place. According to Arbill, proper safety training includes ensuring it is ongoing. It should not just occur once and be forgotten.

Ongoing training allows you to stay current on what is happening in your work place and clear on what hazards or issues are present, which can change over time. In addition, it allows you to get information about new safety procedures and protective gear. Plus, it is always nice to have a refresher so people are not taking safety for granted.

What are the signs of a brain injury?

A brain injury is always a serious situation. However, it is not always easy to know when you or someone else has a brain injury. The signs and symptoms can be different for each person in each situation. Even if you have had a brain injury before, the signs may not be the same this time around. This only adds to the risks because an untreated brain injury can lead to serious consequences. The best way to protect yourself is to familiarize yourself with the possible signs.

The Mayo Clinic explains that you first should understand that symptoms of a brain injury may not appear right away. Sometimes they can take weeks to appear. If you have been injured, you need to watch for any signs that something could be wrong in the days and weeks following the injury.

Get immediate help if you notice a cerebralspinal fluid leak

A cerebralspinal fluid leak, also known as a CSF leak, is a serious complication of a head injury. This typically occurs when there is a hole in the skull, such as a fracture. This potentially life-threatening injury has to be recognized as quickly as possible to prevent the leak from resulting in brain death.

What's interesting about CSF leaks is that they are not always caused by injuries. For this article, the type of CSF leak is one caused by an injury to the skull.

What are the rules about stopping for school buses?

As the school year begins in Louisiana, it is time for all drivers to become aware of the laws about stopping for school buses. Some drivers are unaware or unsure of the laws. These laws are imperative to keeping kids safe when getting on and off the bus. As a driver, it is your responsibility to ensure that you are following the law and doing your part to keep kids safe.

According to KPEL, your requirements for stopping for a school bus depend on what type of road you are on. If you are on a two-lane road and traveling in any direction, you must always stop for a school bus that is stopped to pick up or drop off children. If you are on a divided highway with multiple lanes going in each direction, you only must stop if you are traveling the same direction as the bus.

What is commercial vehicle insurance?

If you use your vehicle for business purposes in Louisiana, you should get commercial vehicle insurance. Trusted Choice explains that this type of auto insurance is designed specifically to cover your vehicle when it is used for business. Your regular insurance will not cover you if you are using your vehicle as part of business services, such as delivering or hauling items being sold as part of your business.

Commercial vehicle insurance offers you similar coverage to your regular auto insurance policy. You can get liability coverage that protects you should you cause an accident and damage someone else's property. You can also get comprehensive coverage to cover damage to your vehicle. In addition, some polices offer coverage for you when you are loading or unloading, provide rentals and towing services. It is usually highly adjustable based on your needs.

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