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BMW Motorcycles Recalled Due to Fire Risk

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

BMW North America has announced a recall of thousands of motorcycles due to a possible defect that could cause a fuel leakage and a fire.

The recall is affecting approximately 50,184 model year 2005-2011 R-model motorcycles, 2005-2012 K-model motorcycles, 2010-2011 S 1000 model motorcycles and 2006-2010 HP 2 motorcycles. According to the company, there is a defect in these motorcycles that could cause cracks to develop in the fuel pump flange, and as a result, the flange may leak fuel. This could easily pose a serious fire risk.

All owners of the motorcycles that are included in this recall are being asked to visit their local dealers to either replace the pump, or reinforce the flange free of charge.

Riding a well- functioning, well- maintained motorcycle is key to staying safe when riding. Motorcyclists are already at danger of being injured in accidents, caused by other motorists’ negligence, and adverse road conditions, and other factors. Riding a motorcycle that is not 100% safe to ride simply increases your risk of being involved in an accident.

However, it must be noted that most motorcycle accidents that are recorded in the United States every year are not caused due to defective or malfunctioning motorcycle components. Several studies have established that the biggest factor in motorcycle accidents is the failure of motorists to yield to a motorcycle. Motorists often fail to look out for motorcyclists, especially at intersections and other busy areas, and the result is very often a collision that leaves the motorcyclist seriously injured.

Motorcyclists may be at a higher risk of being injured when they are involved in an accident with an automobile, compared to the people in the car. With more motorcycles in California roads now, motorists must take greater precautions and look out for motorcyclists on the road.

Study Points to Beneficial Effects of GDL Laws on Novice Driving Skills

Monday, January 06, 2014

Earlier research has confirmed the benefits of graduated driver’s licensing programs in helping keep novice drivers safe. New research by the California Department of Motor Vehicles and the University Of North Carolina also confirms this fact.

The research used fatal accident data from between 1986 and 2007, and analyzed the data to see the impact of various components of Graduated Driver’s Licensing programs across the nation.

The researchers found that the rate of fatal accidents for 16 to 17-year-olds, were approximately 21% lower when the permit holding period dropped from 9 to 12 months. When these novice drivers had a passenger restriction of no more than one passenger in the car during this period, there was an approximately 50% reduction in fatal accident rates.

An intermediate license age of 16 ½ to 17 years led to a reduction in the fatal accident rate for 16-year-olds, but there was no discernible effect on the accident rate for 17-year-olds. Also, when nighttime driving restrictions for novice drivers prevented these motorists from driving after 10 PM, there was a significant reduction in the fatal crash rate.

The study also found that when minimum learner permit holding periods were extended to at least five months, there was a significant reduction in the fatal crash rate. However, when the minimum learner permit holding period was extended to between nine and 12 months, the reduction was much greater.

What Thousand Oaks car accident lawyers found really surprising was that when the passenger restriction included a limit of just one passenger in the car, there was a much greater reduction in the fatal crash rate, compared to rules that banned passengers altogether from the car. This could be because teenage drivers are much more likely to comply with a one-passenger restriction, than with a no-passenger restriction.

How to Deal with an Aggressive Driver

Sunday, December 29, 2013

Aggressive driving is not just well alive and well on American roads, but it is actually on the increase. According to a recent State Farm survey involving more than 1,000 American drivers above the age of 18, approximately 64% of American drivers reported experiencing aggressive driving behavior at least six times over the past three months.

The rates of such behaviors are very high in California which has notorious problems with congested traffic. It is no secret that motorists are much more likely to indulge in aggressive driving, when they are stressed, frustrated, stuck in traffic, or in other similar situations.

It is very important to deal responsibly and safely with a driver who is becoming hostile towards you on the road, and not do anything thing that will exacerbate the situation. Make no mistake. Aggressive drivers maybe much more prone to fits of road rage that can actually end in harm to you.

If you come across a hostile driver, avoid all eye contact with the driver. Stay calm, and avoiding getting dragged into what could be a potentially nasty situation. Avoid stress at all costs, and avoid responding or retaliating in any way.

Maintain a safe distance from the car in front of you. If the driver is driving too close to you, pull out of the way, and allow the driver to pass. Keep your windows closed, and the doors locked.

Avoid driving under the influence of alcohol, because alcohol impairs judgment skills, and increases the likelihood that you will get involved in a confrontation with an aggressive motorist. You need all your senses about you when you're dealing with such motorists, and alcohol interferes with your ability to do that.

Exercise Programs Can Help Prevent Slip and Fall Accidents Involving Elderly

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Senior care home residents may be at a higher risk of suffering a slip and fall accident that can have long-term negative health consequences. According to the results of a new study, when seniors are put through exercise programs that are specifically targeted at helping reduce the risk of falls, fall risks decrease.

The study was conducted by researchers at the University of Queensland. Researchers at the facility’s School of Human Movement Studies found that when residents were put through an exercise program twice a week, only 42% suffered at least one fall. In contrast, 81% of participants in the group that did not have the benefit of exercise suffered a slip and fall accident.

According to the researchers, in Australia, the slip and fall accident rate among persons in residential care facilities for the elderly, is approximately 1.5 fall accidents per bed per year. The study was targeted at helping understand what types of exercise programs will help benefit seniors, and help prevent fall accidents. They found that seniors who participated in the twice weekly exercise programs were likely to become fitter, and therefore less likely to fall, compared to the seniors who did not participate in the exercise program.

However, there may also be other factors that affect a person's chances of benefiting from exercise. For instance, the researchers pointed at the fact that persons in the two groups differed in their physical functioning, even before they participated in the exercise program.

There are a number of other studies that also point to the benefits of a structured exercise program in helping prevent falls involving the elderly. Typically, these exercise programs are focused on increasing balance, and strengthening coordination among seniors. The point is to increase internal strength and stability, so that seniors can more easily avoid fall hazards in their environment.

Feds Announce Plans to Prevent Senior Motorist Accidents

Tuesday, December 03, 2013

Over the next few years, there is expected to be a dramatic spike in the number of senior drivers on our roads. In order to deal with this increase and the related accident risks, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration recently announced the launch of a new five-year strategic plan that is targeted specifically at reducing the risk of accidents involving elderly drivers.

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, since 2003 alone, the population of senior motorists aged above 65 in this country has increased by a staggering 20%. The number of licensed senior motorists in the country has also increased by 21% and in 2012, there were approximately 35 million senior motorists of this age category in this country. In 2012, more than 5, 560 people above the age of 65 died in car accidents. More than 214,000 senior motorists in this age category were also injured in these accidents.

What is also concerning is that the number of senior car accident fatalities have actually been increasing. Compared to 2011, there was actually a 3% increase in fatalities involving senior motorists, as well as a 16% increase in injuries.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s new strategic plan will focus on three areas, which are of particular concern to senior drivers. First of all, the plan will focus on increased auto safety, and the use of auto safety technologies like vehicle-two vehicle communications, accident crash avoidance technologies as well as auto crash worthiness. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration also plans upgrades to the New Car Assessment Program, which will include a new Silver rating for older occupants.

The federal agency also plans to increase and enhance the accumulation of data to examine crash rates and injuries involving senior motorists. The plan will also include an analysis of senior motorist behavior, which will include a focus on public education,and identification of those issues that place seniors at a high risk of accidents, including age-related changes.



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From our offices in Woodland Hills, California, Freeman & Freeman, LLP, provides legal advice and representation for clients in communities throughout the state, including those in Burbank, Glendale, Encino, Sherman Oaks, Van Nuys, Tarzana, Santa Clarita, Agoura Hills, Reseda, Canoga Park, Chatsworth, Northridge, Granada Hills, Pacoima, Panorama City, North Hollywood, Thousand Oaks, Simi Valley, Lancaster, Palmdale and Alhambra.