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Law Offices of David W. Clark, P.C.

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IL injury lawyerWhen a person falls or is struck by an object, the resulting injury can range from minor to severe. Shoulder injuries are very common regardless of an individual’s age. This type of injury can occur if someone slips and falls and lands on his or her shoulder, causing a fracture, broken bones, or torn ligaments. Damage to the arm and shoulder can also be the result of an automobile, motorcycle, or bicycle accident. This is especially common in cases where another driver or rider was distracted or operating his or her vehicle recklessly. It is imperative to know your rights to compensation if your shoulder injury was caused by the reckless or negligent actions of another person.

Damage to the Rotator Cuff

Torn rotator cuffs are some of the most common shoulder injuries. The rotator cuff is a group of muscles and tendons that surround the shoulder joint, keeping the top of your upper arm bone secured in the socket of the shoulder. Torn rotator cuffs can begin with a dull ache, but if they do not heal properly, they can require surgery to repair and significant rehabilitation.

A tear in the shoulder’s rotator cuff can be caused by repetitive motion, or it can result from a sudden and unexpected impact or trauma.

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IL accident attorneyWith fall upon us and winter approaching, parts of the country are already experiencing inclement weather. Heavy rains and winter storms can wreak havoc on driving conditions and pose a real danger to Illinois motorists. According to the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) statistics, more than 5.8 million vehicle crashes occur every year. Approximately 21 percent of those involved hazardous weather. Slippery or icy roads can lead to a driver losing control of his or her vehicle, resulting in car accidents with serious injuries or even fatalities. That is why it is even more important for everyone on the road to be extra alert during bad weather and drive responsibly in order to avoid a potential collision.

Weather Factors That Can Lead to Crashes

There are various conditions that bad weather causes, and it often depends on the temperature outside. Based on how warm or cold the air is, precipitation can result in fog, rain, sleet, hail, or snow. If the air temperature drops, water on pavement can turn to ice, a significant driving hazard. Below are some of the major weather conditions that occur in Illinois, which can increase the chances of an auto accident:

  • Rain and flooding: The average automobile can be swept off the road in one foot of moving water. In addition, streets covered by water can collapse. Attempting to drive through water can also stall a car’s engine, possibly leaving you stranded.
  • Snow and ice: Icy pavement lacks friction and vehicle maneuverability, increasing crash risk. It can take up to 10 times longer to stop on an icy road as it does on a dry one. Experts suggest allowing 20 seconds of time behind the car in front of you.
  • Low visibility: Foggy conditions reduce the distance a driver can see ahead of the car.
  • Strong winds: Higher vehicles are most affected by high winds, but sudden gusts can blow any automobile off course. Also, striking any type of debris that is blowing in the wind at a high speed could be fatal, so it is imperative to travel at a slower speed.

Driver Behaviors That Can Cause Collisions

Today’s traffic enforcement patrols promote safe driving techniques in an attempt to reduce the number of accidents. From posted speed limits to DUI checkpoints to electronic signage alerting drivers of slow-downs ahead, they are all meant to keep our highways safer.

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b2ap3_thumbnail_pedestrian.jpgSome people may think walking is a safe way of getting to and from places. However, a pedestrian traveling down the street or in a designated crosswalk can be at risk of being struck by a vehicle, motorcycle, or even a bicycle. The sheer force of the impact in any type of pedestrian accident can result in serious injuries or possibly death. The majority of pedestrian deaths take place on local streets at night, suggesting the need for safer road crossings, signage, lighting, in addition to distracted driving prevention measures. According to the Governors Highway Safety Association, nighttime collisions made up more than 90 percent of the total increase in pedestrian fatalities in the last 10 years.

Types of Pedestrian Injuries

Pedestrian accidents can occur when someone is going for a run, taking a stroll, or simply standing on a sidewalk. Regardless if a pedestrian is struck by an automobile, motorcycle, bus or truck, injuries suffered are likely to be much more severe than if the person was a passenger in a car. For a pedestrian, there is no protection between the body and the vehicle to soften the blow. In some cases, a victim may need surgery, extensive rehabilitation, or even amputation. A person is often unable to return to work because of chronic pain or brain damage, which results in hardship due to lost wages. The most common types of injuries a pedestrian can suffer after being struck by any type of vehicle or cycle include:

  • Broken or fractured bones
  • Traumatic brain injury (TBI)
  • Neck injuries resulting in whiplash or fractured vertebrae
  • Back/spinal cord damage or paralysis
  • Internal bleeding
  • Damage to joints, shoulders, or knees

Causes of Pedestrian Injuries

The risk of a pedestrian accident is heightened at night compared to daytime. The increase in nighttime pedestrian fatalities may be attributed to poor street lighting or a lack of traffic enforcement patrols. There are many dangerous driving behaviors, such as speeding or distracted/impaired driving that can also put pedestrians in harm’s way.

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IL injury lawyerTraffic laws, such as maintaining an appropriate speed, wearing seat belts, and not operating a vehicle under the influence of alcohol are more likely to be followed by elderly drivers compared to younger motorists. Furthermore, elderly drivers often avoid difficult driving conditions, like rush hour, driving at night, or driving in poor weather conditions.

According to statistics from the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA), 2016 recorded 41.7 million licensed drivers over the age of 65. Breaking that down, out of the 221.7 million licensed drivers in the United States, almost one in five drivers are 65 years or older. While elderly motorists are considered to be safer drivers, they are at a much higher risk of car accident injuries. If you or a loved one has been injured in a car accident, an experienced lawyer could advise you on the best course of legal action.

Why Are Car Accident Injuries More Common for Elderly Drivers?

As our bodies continue to age, certain vulnerabilities start to become more prevalent and noticeable. The act of operating a motor vehicle requires quick reflexes, increased awareness of your surroundings, good vision and hearing, and the ability to make immediate decisions. As the aging process continues, several factors can contribute to an increased risk of car accident injuries:

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IL car accident lawyerAccording to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), motor vehicle crashes are a leading cause of death in the United States. Victims of car accidents often injure themselves by hitting the windshield or dashboard of the vehicle. They can also be thrown from the vehicle if they are not properly restrained. Today’s automobiles feature much more advanced safety features compared to cars in the past. In addition to seat belts, airbag restraint systems are placed throughout the vehicle. These devices can protect occupants by “cushioning” the impact or force when jolted in a crash.

Common Types of Car Crash Injuries

Injuries are not just sustained in high-speed car accidents. Even a collision at a lower speed can cause a driver’s or passenger’s head to hit the windshield, a side window, or the steering wheel. Unsecured objects in the car can also become airborne and hit occupants. A few of the typical injuries passengers suffer in a vehicle crash include:

  • Head and neck injuries
  • Traumatic brain injury (TBI)
  • Whiplash
  • Cracked ribs
  • Broken/fractured bones
  • Lacerations
  • Internal bleeding

Seat Belts

Seat belts have been around for a long time, but they are still the most basic and important restraint device. When they were first put in cars, seat belts only went across a person’s lap. Now, seat belts have two parts: A lap belt that goes over the individual’s pelvis, and the shoulder belt, which extends over one shoulder and across the chest.

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