In a study conducted by the Univerisity of Utah Medical Center looking at a span of 5 ski seasons, a total of 794 skiing accidents and 348 snowboarding accidents were treated at their emergency department. That's 1142 injuries for just one hospital in the state. It's is apparent why states with thriving skiing and snowboarding industries have legislation created to protect resorts from being sued by every individual who might sustain an injury while skiing or snowboarding. In most situations, ski resorts are not liable for injuries sustained while a person is skiing or snowboarding. Resorts are protected by language that relates to the "inherent risks" of skiing. These risks often include collisions with other skiers, skiing outside of the designated trails, skiing on trails that are beyond the skiers ability and how the trails are groomed and laid out.
If you were injured in an automobile accident and received treatment for your injuries in a hospital, you may receive a document in the mail from the hospital called a hospital lien. This document is the hospital's way of placing a claim to money you may receive from a settlement to cover their cost of treatment. The lien will typically state that the hospital bill will be paid first from the settlement and then any residual funds will go to the claimant.
Decorating your home can be one of the highlights of the holiday season but it can also be the cause of serious injury if you are not careful. Emergency rooms see thousands of injuries that result from holiday decorating and 12% of decorative candle related home fires occur in the month of December. Here are a few simple suggestions from the National Safety Council to help safety and common sense prevail this holiday season.
In a recent study published by the Rand Corporation, they concluded that getting self driving cars on the road that have a safety improvement factor of even 10 percent above human driving safety performance can save upwards of hundreds of thousands of lives. A main concern about deploying self driving vehicles has been the need to test them to reach levels of 75 to 90 percent safety performance rates. Authors Nidhi Kalra and David G. Groves wrote an article referring to the Rand study that concluded, "In the short term, more lives are cumulatively saved under a more permissive policy (Improve10) than stricter policies requiring greater safety advancements (Improve75 or Improve90) in nearly all conditions, and those savings can be significant - hundreds of thousands of lives."
This is good news for Waymo, a subsidiary of Google's parent company Alphabet who have begun the first public tests of self-driving cars without backup drivers in Phoenix Arizona. Initially all test passengers will be Waymo employees but eventually Waymo will open its doors to Arizona residents. The model will follow a ride hailing service rather than producing vehicles for private ownership and use.
One of the largest obstacles with determining the safety of self driving cars is the fact that currently there is no standardized reliable testing system in place. A recent NPR article referring to this issue states, "There isn't a set system in place on just how safety can be measured without putting cars on the street. How can we know when an autonomous car actually reaches the point of being safer than a human, if ever?"
Current legislation is being explored to try to regulate the production and use of self driving cars. However, there are several other issues at play. Will the public at large accept self driving cars? Who is liable if a self driving car is in an accident? Is a safer self driving car really safe enough? It will be interesting to see how this plays out in the world of personal injuries. In the meantime, if you or someone you know is injured in a motor vehicle accident, contact our office for a free consultation. We can help.
Most people who are injured in an motor vehicle accident are aware of the costs associated with medical treatment. But an additional cost that is not always considered is lost wages as result of the injury. When a person sustains an injury they may encounter lost wages because they were unable to work during their recovery period. If an injury results in a permanent disability, a person might experience a loss of earning capacity because of a change in their ability to perform work related tasks. Others might experience a loss of opportunity for income if their injuries prevent them from attending job interviews.