Last updated 1 year ago
Understanding what traffic signs mean is essential to being a safe driver. Violating a sign is as egregious as any other traffic violation, and it may result in a deadly car accident. However, it isn’t always obvious to every driver what a sign means. Stop signs are unambiguous enough, but highway drivers are frequently presented with a confusing cluster of multi-colored signs that can be difficult to decipher.
Here are some tips for determining what a road sign is telling you:
Is there an arrow? Often, signs include arrows that indicate the direction in which a vehicle is permitted to drive. A sign that displays a line with two opposite-facing curves in it indicates that there is a winding, possibly challenging stretch of road ahead, while a sign showing a single arrow along with the word “ONLY” indicates that you should follow the direction of the arrow.
What color is the sign? Color is used to indicate meaning on traffic signs. For example, red means that something is not permitted, green means that something is permitted, and yellow means to proceed with caution. For instance, if a right-facing arrow is displayed inside a red circle and backslash, the sign indicates that turning right is prohibited at that point.
What else is represented on the sign? A sign with a picture is almost always meant to warn drivers about the presence of something on the road. A sign showing two stick figures indicates a nearby crosswalk, while a sign showing an animal indicates that animals such as deer may be crossing the road.
If you have been involved in a car accident in the Orlando area, it’s important that you speak with a qualified personal injury attorney as soon as possible. Michael Barszcz, M.D., J.D., practices in car accidents, medical malpractice, wrongful death, and other types of personal injury cases. For more information, call our office today at (407) 843-6353.
Last updated 1 year ago
Maintaining a distraction-free environment inside your vehicle is critical to staying safe. As most parents know, children often become restless during long—and even short—trips. All too often, a fussy child can distract you from seeing a stop sign, a vehicle pulling in front of you, or another dangerous factor that can propel you into a serious car accident. Here are some ways in which you can ensure that your children settle down and don’t distract you from driving:
Bring plenty of toys and books. Depending on your child’s age, an appropriate toy can provide hours of quiet and safe entertainment. Coloring books, card games, wooden blocks, and magnetic board games such as checkers are all excellent choices. If your child is a little older, encourage them to get in the habit of bringing a book—or even two—every time they go for a long ride.
Find a book on tape. Not everyone can afford a car with a built-in entertainment center—but you don’t need one. Your local library should have a good selection of books on tape for children, from Dr. Seuss to Roald Dahl. If you don’t want to listen along, bring a portable CD player and headphones for your child.
Play travel games. If you have another adult along for the ride, playing a family-friendly travel game should be more than enough to keep any amount of children entertained for hours on end. You can bring a pack of Trivial Pursuit cards and quiz your passengers, or you might all try to spot a license plate from each of the 50 states. Other children might enjoy the “I Spy” game, where your passengers compete to be the first to spot objects that begin with all 26 letters of the alphabet.
Are you in need of legal counsel? Michael Barszcz, M.D., J.D., is an Orlando-area personal injury attorney who practices in car accidents, wrongful death, and other injury claims. Visit us on the Web for more information about our legal services, or call (407) 843-6353 to arrange a consultation.
Last updated 1 year ago
For more information on personal injury and safe driving, check out the following resources. If you have suffered an injury that was caused by the negligence of another, contact Michael Barszcz, M.D., J.D., at (407) 843-6353. As a personal injury attorney in the state of Florida, he can help you get the compensation you deserve.
At Edmunds.com, you can get tips on how to correctly install your child’s safety seat.
This article from the New York Times explores the difficulty that prosecutors often face when trying to convict someone of driving under the influence of prescription drugs.
The Orlando Sentinel discusses how some employers are banning texting while driving for their employees, and why they are doing this.
At Road & Travel Magazine, you can read more about what you should do when you see an accident.
Car and Driver offers this piece on the Society of Automotive Engineers’ new recommendations on adjusting rear-view and side-view mirrors.
In this article, you can learn more about the changing demographics of Florida’s drivers, specifically the rise in elderly drivers, and find out what this means for law enforcement, vehicle design, and safety on the road.
At IIHS.org, you can see a map of the United States that shows the states that have bans on texting. Florida, along with five other states, does not have a ban on texting in place.
Last updated 1 year ago
Riding a motorcycle is inherently dangerous, no matter how cautious its owner might be. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, a motorcycle is more than 200 times more likely than a car to be involved in a serious traffic accident. This means that it’s incumbent upon every driver to take appropriate precautions to keep from hitting motorcyclists. Here are some essential tips for avoiding a motorcycle accident:
Most motorcycle accidents happen because another driver did not see the motorcyclist. Motorcycles are more difficult to see than cars, and they are often obscured by trucks, SUVs, vans, and other large vehicles on the road. Always check your blind spots before you change lanes or turn. Be particularly careful when turning at an intersection, which is where a high percentage of motorcycle accidents take place.
Motorcycles are particularly vulnerable to rear-end collisions, which can knock the motorcyclist out of his or her seat and cause serious injuries. When you are driving near a motorcycle, always use your turn signal well before you plan to turn in order to give the motorcyclist time to react. Always maintain a safe following distance whenever you are driving behind a motorcycle.
You should always make sure that you are giving a motorcyclist enough room to maneuver safely. A motorcycle is not a bicycle—it requires a full lane to drive in, no less than any other motor vehicle. Remember that motorcycles drive differently than other vehicles; they are smaller and are affected by different aspects of the road. A small pothole that a truck driver would experience as a mild bump could cause a motorcyclist to take a spill.
When your life has been disrupted by a serious injury, you need the services of a personal injury attorney. Michael Barszcz, M.D., J.D., practices in a variety of personal injury claims, including car accidents, motorcycle accidents, and wrongful death. To learn more about our services, call (407) 843-6353 today.
Last updated 1 year ago
When a driver pulls out a cell phone and begins texting—either sending or receiving—he or she is no longer fully present behind the wheel. The results of this distraction are often deadly: According to the Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles, no fewer than 180 Florida car accidents in 2011 were attributed to texting while driving.
Because texting involves taking your eyes off the road, many experts have argued that it is even more dangerous than drunk driving. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has estimated that the distraction of texting makes a driver 23 times more likely to become involved in a car accident. According to one recent federal survey, more than half of all drivers have texted while behind the wheel.
Despite that, Florida remains one of only five states in the country with no restrictions of any kind on texting while driving. Lawmakers have made repeated efforts to outlaw texting while driving, but to no avail; it has been repeatedly defeated by legislators who argue that a ban would be an intrusive infringement on drivers’ personal liberties.
Because of that, some Florida employers are taking steps to crack down on employees who text while driving on the job. These employers include some of the most prominent private and public employers in the state, such as Walt Disney World and Orange County. Schools in Seminole County and Lake County are also considering a ban on employee texting.
Employers have good reason to want to discourage their employees from texting: If an employee is involved in an on-the-job accident, the employer could be held responsible for the damages. However, the reasons go far beyond employer liability. When fewer drivers are texting while driving, the roads are safer for everyone.
Are you in need of legal representation? Michael Barszcz, M.D., J.D. is a personal injury attorney serving Orlando and the surrounding community. Our areas of practice include car accidents, truck accidents, medical malpractice, and wrongful death. To arrange a consultation to discuss your case, call our office today at (407) 843-6353.