Autonomous vehicle technologies

Regardless of a person's views on self-driving vehicles, it is important to have a basic understanding of how these cars operate as they are becoming more prevalent today. Connecticut drivers may actually be surprised that even the vehicles they buy today but do not consider to be self-driving still feature many self-driving functions and technologies.

As explained by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, there are six distinct and identifiable levels of vehicle automation. Level zero has no automation whatsoever and level five is a completely autonomous vehicle that can be operated without a human ready or able to take control. A level one vehicle might have a feature like cruise control and a level two vehicle might have lane departure warnings, forward collision braking or lane keep assistance features yet still requires a person to operate it full-time.

Connecticut's drunk driving problem

Connecticut residents have many things to be proud of when it comes to their state. However, there is one area in which the state is leading the nation but that does not represent one of the areas that offer residents a reason to feel positive about where they live. That area involves drunk driving deaths. 

A report on New Year's Eve 2018 by the Hartford Courant exposed a sobering reality. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration records from 2017 show that Connecticut holds the unfortunate distinction of recording the second-highest percentage of drunk driving deaths among all vehicular fatalities in the country. The District of Columbia is in the number one position. For Connecticut, in 2017 drunk drivers claimed the lives of 43% of all people who were killed in motor vehicle accidents. Across all 50 states and D.C., alcohol was involved in 29% of all vehicular fatalities that year.

How to drive safely during the summer holiday season

If you're hitting the road during the summer holiday season in Wallingford, such as the days around July Fourth or Labor Day, it's critical to adjust your driving style to enhance your overall level of safety.

Not only are the roads more crowded around the holidays, but there's also a greater likelihood of being in close proximity to drunk drivers.

Questions about safety following fiery Connecticut crash

Early last Monday morning, a fiery crash among four vehicles on Interstate 84 in East Hartford, Connecticut, resulted in the deaths of two people. The accident took place on a bridge, and authorities had some concern that the asphalt may have become damaged due to the heat from the resulting fire. The interstate closed down for several hours to allow law enforcement to conduct its investigation and the Department of Transportation to assess the need for any repairs. 

The accident reportedly involved four vehicles: a school bus and four tractor-trailers. Fortunately, there were no children aboard the school bus at the time of the crash. Authorities confirm that two people lost their lives in the crash but have not released any identifying information, even in regard to which vehicles they were driving, pending notification of family members. 

Are icy roads the only slip and fall risk?

Connecticut residents like you often have to deal with slippery footing in the winter due to the ice and snow. However, just because it is almost summer doesn't mean there are no slipping or tripping hazards out there. Today we will discuss some of summer's most dangerous slip and trip hazards.

One of the most risky places is the pool. Many people go there to cool off during the hottest days of summer. However, FindLaw states that there are many different swimming pool injuries you can accrue both outside and inside the water. In regard to slips and trips, the worst place by far is the deck. This surface is always slick and wet, and even if you move carefully, you could slip. Some pools don't have proper warnings or lifeguards on duty either, making it even more of a risk.

Dog bites and PTSD

After getting bitten by a dog in Connecticut, some people may want to forget the incident as quickly as possible. If the incident was particularly traumatic, though, it can be hard for people to move on, and sometimes people might have Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder. It is important for them to recognize the signs and know when they need to seek help.

There are many signs that a person might have PTSD. According to the Anxiety and Depression Association of America, some people may have trouble concentrating or be unable to fall asleep. Other people may have nightmares about the dog bite and experience flashbacks. Additionally, some people may feel irritable or realize they feel wary whenever they are in an area similar to the place where the dog bite happened. Some people may also blame themselves for the incident or blame the people who were nearby when the incident occurred.

Keep guests sober at a BBQ

When you host your friends for a backyard BBQ in Connecticut, you may only think about the fun you will have. However, if you serve alcohol, it is important to make sure your guests do not drive drunk. At Loughlin Fitzgerald, P.C., we know it is important for you to understand your duties as a social host.

When you host parties with alcohol, you usually become a social host. This means that if people become drunk at your home and get into a car accident after they leave, you might be liable. As a social host, it is typically your responsibility to make sure your guests do not get drunk. If you notice that someone is intoxicated, it is also your duty to make sure he or she gets home safely without driving.

Who pays for medical bills after a fall?

Connecticut property owners have an obligation to keep you and the rest of the citizens of the state safe from preventable injuries. However, what constitutes dangerous property conditions or poor maintenance might be subject to some discussion. 

As defined by FindLaw, the personal injury law system in the state is based on negligent parties paying injured parties. While the behavior that actually counts as negligence is likely to vary from one case to another, there are some common events and conditions that could lead to a court deciding that a slip-and-fall accident was the property owner's fault, at least to some degree.

Watch out for drunk drivers on Connecticut summer roads

With warmer weather comes the pull of the great outdoors. Thousands of people across the state of Connecticut spend their spring and summer weekends hiking, camping, biking and even boating. Enjoying those activities usually means driving to a cabin or visiting with friends. With the desire to relax and enjoy oneself often also comes the impulse to consume excessive amounts of alcohol.

The summer months are a time of increased risk for people on the roads because of the heightened presence of impaired drivers. Summer barbecues and Independence Day celebrations are likely to involve copious amounts of alcohol. Staying alert, staying off the road during the most dangerous times and watching out for impaired drivers can help you stay safe.

What should you do after a dog bite?

Not only is a bite from a dog in Connecticut painful, but it can also be psychologically traumatic and expose you to certain diseases. According to the Centers for Disease Control, a bite from a dog requires immediate attention, but your response may vary based on the depth or severity of the resulting wound. 

Any serious wound resulting from a dog bite requires emergency medical attention. A wound is serious if it involves exposed bones or muscles, causes extreme pain or loss of function or if the bleeding from the wound is uncontrollable. You should also see a health care provider as soon as possible for a wound that extends deeply into the tissues, especially if you have not received a tetanus shot within the last five years or there is uncertainty over whether the dog that bit you was current on its rabies vaccination. 

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