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Grayson, Kentucky, Legal Blog

How underinsured motorist policies help drivers

An accident can happen at any given time on a Kentucky road or any other road in the country. There is no guarantee that the driver who causes the accident will have enough insurance to cover damages incurred in the accident. One way to protect against drivers who don't have sufficient insurance is to purchase underinsured motorist coverage.

Coverage is generally offered to protect against both bodily injury and property damage. However, bodily injury coverage is the most common type of protection offered. Bodily injury coverage policies pay out when a driver doesn't have sufficient coverage to pay medical or similar bills. It is important to note that an individual can only collect on an underinsured motorist policy if the policy limit is higher than the other driver's insurance coverage limits.

Do you have to sue the other driver after a car accident?

You have read about what to do after getting into an accident to help your chances of physical and financial recovery. Such advice is beneficial whether you get into a major collision or a minor fender bender. Some steps you may wholeheartedly embrace, but perhaps one of them really bothers you: litigation.

Do you have to sue the other driver after you get into a car accident? Maybe you are a noncontentious person who wants to avoid court battles and go your separate way. Perhaps you are a very understanding and forgiving person and knew the incident was truly an accident, so you do not want to go after the driver. Or maybe you just do not want to deal with the headache and cost of a lawsuit.

Study says seat belts can reduce the severity of liver injuries

Drivers in Kentucky should know that one of the most common car crash injuries is internal abdominal trauma. In most such cases, the liver and spleen are affected. While the spleen can be removed if necessary, the liver is a vital organ. This makes the latter a greater threat to drivers.

A recent study from NYU Langone Hospital-Brooklyn has shown that the risk for severe liver injuries can decrease as much as 21 percent if drivers simply remember to wear their seat belts. If the car has working airbags, that rate becomes 26 percent. Though seat belts won't prevent liver injuries altogether, the important conclusion is that they save lives. Airbags alone, on the other hand, cannot reduce the injury severity.

Coalition aims to cut traffic fatalities

Many Kentucky drivers may be worried about the dangers of accidents when they get behind the wheel every day. One new coalition is bringing together safety experts, government agencies and private industry to work to eliminate fatalities caused by traffic accidents. The Road to Zero Coalition argues that traffic deaths are universally preventable. However, over 100 people each day are killed in crashes on American roadways. The coalition says that its goal is to achieve zero traffic fatalities before 2050.

There are 650 members of the coalition, which aims to support roadway safety initiatives to cut the number and severity of car accidents. The founding of the coalition was inspired by the rise in fatalities on the roadways. In 2016, 37,461 people were killed in car crashes, which represented an increase of 5.6 percent over the previous year. The coalition includes trucking companies and suppliers as well, which is particularly important since truck accidents and related fatalities have also been on the rise. In 2016, 4,317 people lost their lives in large truck accidents with 722 truck drivers or passengers numbering among the victims.

Study questions the effectiveness of distracted driving laws

Lawmakers in Kentucky have yet to ban the use of phones by divers, but the results of a recent study suggest that such a law would have little effect on road safety in the Bluegrass State. The technology firm Zendrive used anonymized consumer data to find out how long drivers in various parts of the country spend looking at their phone screens each day, and they found that this kind of reckless behavior is becoming worryingly common even in states with strict distracted driving laws.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration estimates that approximately 660,000 drivers are distracted by phones in the United States each day, but the Zendrive study calls this figure into question. The Zendrive researchers put the number of distracted American drivers at 69 million, which represents more than 60 percent of all motorists. The data indicates that drivers use their phones for an average of three minutes and 40 seconds every hour. Unfortunately, strict regulations seem to have little influence on this dangerous activity.

How to get financially ready for a divorce

Prior to getting a divorce, it can be a good idea to review financial documents and create a financial plan for life as a single person. Kentucky residents and others in this situation could benefit by getting documents such as bank statements, credit reports and others with important information on them. They can be held in a safe place such as at a bank or with a friend to keep a spouse from getting them.

Those who are preparing to divorce should get credit cards in their own name. They will also want to get a checking and savings account in their own name. This will provide a newly single person with the ability to gain financial independence as soon as possible. Individuals who didn't work while married could still obtain credit based on a spouse's income. This is stipulated by the Credit Card Accountability Responsibility and Disclosure (CARD) Act of 2009.

The dangers of driving while bored

A lot of attention has been paid to drivers using phones on Kentucky roads and other locations throughout the nation. However, bored or inattentive drivers could be just as dangerous as those who are on their phones. Erie Insurance did a study involving 172,000 traffic deaths over the past five years. The research indicated that 10 percent of the people who were killed were the victims of distracted driving of some type.

However, 61 percent of the individuals who lost their lives died because the other drivers weren't paying attention to the road. People using cell phones caused only 14 percent of the deaths related to distracted driving. Driving while not paying attention may be a natural byproduct of undertaking a task most people find to be routine. While the introduction of self-driving cars may reduce crashes related to human error, it could increase levels of distracted driving when they are first made available.

Night shifts increase likelihood of auto accident

For some professions, working a night shift is unavoidable. Restaurant workers, firefighters, babysitters and many other professionals typically need to drive home in the early hours of the morning after putting in an eight-hour shift. Unfortunately, this routine can increase your likelihood of being in a dangerous crash

While many safe driving efforts focus on the effects of driving under the influence of alcohol or texting while driving, drowsy driving is just as dangerous. People fall asleep behind the wheel all the time, and if you maintain this type of work schedule, then you need to make sure you practice safe driving all the time. You also need to be vigilant of other potentially drowsy drivers on the road. 

How parents can help their kids get through divorce

When parents in Kentucky decide to divorce, their first thought might be how the end of the marriage will impact their children. There are many stories, both positive and negative, of how now-adult children dealt with their parents' divorce. By keeping some key guidelines in mind, people can help their children feel supported and strong even as their lives undergo significant change.

It is important that children feel that they can still turn to both of their parents. A divorce for the adults should not mean one for the children as well. This means that children should not be encouraged to denigrate the other parent or avoid his or her presence. Many kids may feel like their parents expect them to take sides in the divorce and may feel guilty expressing love for the other parent or that they should not see him or her. No matter how contentious the relationship becomes between the adults, children should be encouraged to foster their relationships with both parents. Of course, all of this assumes a situation in which parents have decided to divorce absent a more complicated environment of abuse or neglect.

Inspection spree for buses and trucks begins June

Across Kentucky and the rest of the United States, commercial trucks and buses will soon be subject to an inspection spree known as the International Roadcheck. The Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance conducts this event once a year over a 72-hour period in order to see where drivers are compliant and where they aren't; the agency has recently stated that this year's event will take place from June 5 to 7.

Drivers should understand that most rigs will undergo a Level I inspection, which is the most thorough as it covers both driver- and vehicle-related compliance. The CVSA has made hours-of-service violations a special focus for this year's International Roadcheck. There are two main reasons for this.

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Grayson, KY 41143

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