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Silver Spring Maryland Personal Injury Law Blog

General steps to take after a motor vehicle accident

While no two motor vehicle accidents are identical in regard to the circumstances, there are general steps you can take if you find yourself in this challenging position.

Here are five steps you should attempt to take:

  • Move to safety: By moving your vehicle out of the flow of traffic, you reduce the likelihood of additional trouble. The best thing you can do is move to the shoulder of the road or a nearby parking lot, if possible.
  • Check yourself and passengers for injuries: Even a minor motor vehicle accident can result in serious injuries, such as broken bones and concussion, so don't wait to take this step.
  • Call 911: The dispatcher can help keep you calm, while also sending an ambulance and local police officer to the scene. This will go a long way in putting your mind at ease, which can help prevent a mistake that worsens your situation.
  • Exchange information: This isn't a priority if you're injured, but it's something to consider if you're able to do so. You don't have to discuss the details of the accident. Ask the other party for their insurance card, while also taking notes regarding the make, model and color of the vehicle. Placing blame at this time will only make things worse, so stick to the basics.
  • Document the accident: If possible, take photos of the accident scene, your injuries and damage to your vehicle. You can also document the accident by requesting a copy of the police report.

Drunk drivers in Virginia may pay punitive damages

Accidents happen. People can often be forgiving if only they can be “made whole” with medical expenses and damaged property paid for, lost paychecks reimbursed and compensation for the pain and suffering that can significantly degrade their quality of life.

Sometimes, though, some punishment needs to be part of the picture. Because Virginia recognizes that some behavior is simply intolerable, injured people can seek punitive damages as well as compensatory damages.

Excessive force should not end in wrongful death

Parents never expect to bury a child. Parents are meant to raise their children to adulthood, see them settled and live to enjoy their families as they mature. At some point it is expected that one's parents will die of old age after having lived long and fulfilling lives. While it doesn't always happen this way, the scenario where a young person is cut down in the prime of life happens all too often in our cities, including in Maryland. In some instances, ground may exists for a wrongful death lawsuit.

In a recent case in Towson, a young man died while in police custody. The 21-year-old man apparently died as a result of asphyxiation. This was according to the testimony of medical experts who were consulted during the investigation.

Motor vehicle accidents responsible for loss of many young lives

Heavy traffic on District of Columbia-area roadways in Maryland and Virginia is a significant contributor to accidental deaths in the area. The tragedy of fatal motor vehicle accidents is seldom greater than when one of the dead is a young person who hasn't yet had the chance to live his or her life. A recent accident took the life of a 15-year-old and another person.

The crash happened early on a recent Saturday morning. The car the 15-year-old was riding in was struck from behind. A passenger riding in the front passenger seat and the teenager, who was riding in the back, were both pronounced dead at the scene. The driver of the car was transported by air ambulance to MedStar Washington Medical Center.

Defensive driving could reduce motorcycle accidents

Traffic on metropolitan Washington roadways in Virginia and Maryland continues to be severely congested. During summer months some people choose to use motorcycles as a means of transportation, some for economic and maneuverability reasons and some for the joy they derive from riding a motorcycle. A downside is that these vehicles can be hard to see and tragic motorcycle accidents can result.

A recent accident along I-270 in Gaithersburg left one man dead and his passenger hospitalized. It is not believed that the rainy weather contributed to the cause of the accident. It is not known if alcohol or speed was a contributing factor. The condition of the passenger is not known.

The difference between circuit court and district court

You may not have paid much attention to the descriptor of the court named in your summons. The average person likely hasn’t thought about what it means to appear in circuit court versus appearing in district. In most cases, the difference will never matter to many people.

Yet, the different classifications of the court matter. There’s a reason you’re summoned to a circuit court instead of a district court, for example. Each court has their own characteristics and purpose that justify distinguishing between types of courts.

Alcohol frequently contributes to motor vehicle accidents

Combining football and alcohol can result in a good time. Combining alcohol and driving seldom results in a good time. Such a combination resulted in a tragic end after a Washington Redskins football game. The person accused in the case recently entered a guilty plea in Maryland. Tragic motor vehicle accidents frequently result when alcohol and driving are combined.

The man who pleaded guilty in this case had just left a party where he admitted to having consumed 10 beers. He got into his truck and was driving at what may have been a high rate of speed when he crashed into another vehicle that was stopped at a stop light. The force of the impact caused the truck to become airborne and land on top of the stopped car, causing that car to rear-end two vehicles in front of it.

Wrongful death interrupts family vacation

In Maryland and elsewhere, a policeman's job is not an easy one. However, being a policeman does not give one a pass in the event of the accidental death of a pedestrian. A crash that resulted in the death of a pedestrian during a summer car cruise event in Ocean City has resulted in a wrongful death lawsuit against the trooper who reportedly struck and killed the pedestrian.

The accident occurred about 11 p.m. The man who was killed reportedly looked both ways before stepping into the roadway. According to witnesses he crossed two lanes to the median and again looked both ways. As he crossed the two traffic lanes the trooper's car approached, swerved and then struck the pedestrian.

Training injuries result in personal injury lawsuit

People decide to join the ranks of first responders, such as the police or firefighters, with the understanding that rigorous physical training will be part of their preparations for becoming a first responder. The job of a police officer or a firefighter demands physical strength and the ability to defend and take care of oneself in multiple situations. In the case of a Maryland police academy training course, recruits suffered serious head injuries that resulted in a personal injury lawsuit being brought against the school.

The lawsuit was brought by two former students, a male and a female. The woman suffered a serious head injury as a result of a training exercise that the instructor told her she failed. The recruit was repeatedly struck in the head during five different fight scenarios. The instructor told her she would have to wait to retake the exercise because of the repeated head blows that she incurred but did not offer or recommend medical care. The woman reportedly suffered a severe brain injury as a result of the repeated blows.

Motorcyclists need to get ‘road ready’ before a ride

Summer is the ultimate season for any motorcyclist. The weather is warm, the skies are clear and everyone wants to enjoy the outdoors. However, summer is a particularly deadly season for drivers, specifically motorcyclists.

Luckily, motorcyclists can make sure their bikes are road ready before their trip, like any other driver. All they need to do is create a pre-ride routine that prioritizes safety and efficiency for everyone on the road.

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