Category Archives: Personal Injury

Who Is Liable in a Commercial Truck Accident?

Thursday, September 23, 2021

One of the major differences between commercial truck accidents and the average car crash is liability, or who’s at fault.

Liable parties in a regular car accident are usually just the drivers of the vehicles involved. Determining liability in a truck accident is a far more complex process that could include multiple third parties beyond the person actually driving the commercial vehicle. In other words, the accident may not have entirely been the driver’s fault, even if it appears that way at first. Proving liability in cases like these normally requires an experienced truck accident lawyer.

Manufacturing, managing, and loading a truck is a long process that requires input from many different parties. There’s room for error along any one of these points in the process of moving goods from one location to the next. Because of that, the following groups, companies, and individuals could potentially be held liable for negligence in a truck accident:

Manufacturers: Companies that manufacture truck parts and equipment — anything from tires to brake pads — could share in the blame if their parts helped cause an accident. Some common examples of malfunctioning equipment include tire blowouts, faulty brakes, and mechanical failures. A thorough investigation should reveal such things after an accident. If found to be at fault, manufacturers would be required to pay at least part of victims’ damages.

The Trucking Company: The company that hires the truck driver is a frequent third party held liable in accidents. The trucking company is responsible for maintaining and inspecting the vehicle before every trip, ensuring that all equipment is working properly. But too often, these companies cut corners on inspections, increasing the risk of an accident. They may also push a driver to work longer hours than is safe in the name of meeting a shipping deadline.

Cargo Loaders: Cargo loaders are supposed to ensure a shipment is secured and balanced properly in the truck before the vehicle ever departs. Improperly packed cargo could spill onto the road or throw the truck off balance and hinder a driver’s ability to control the vehicle. An underloaded or overloaded truck can also cause problems for the driver and potentially anyone else in the nearby vicinity.

Truck Drivers: Often, the person behind the wheel of the commercial vehicle shares some responsibility in an accident. Drivers that speed, make reckless lane changes, or break other traffic laws are a danger to everyone on the road. Many truck drivers also struggle with substance abuse, while others work past their designated Hours of Service regulations and wind up exhausted and overworked. All of these factors increase the risk of an accident happening.

Because of the number of potentially responsible parties involved, truck accident litigation can get extremely complex very quickly. If the accident is catastrophic — which is often the case with commercial vehicles — proving negligence will get even more nuanced. Trucking companies and others on the above list do not have your best interests in mind and will often try to get out of paying what they rightfully owe. These companies are armed with attorneys and resources and will usually do everything they can to avoid paying you compensation.

Your best course of action after a major truck accident is to find an experienced truck accident attorney. Rodriguez & Associates has decades of experience handling truck accident cases, and our expertise covers not just engineering and legal issues but also the day-to-day details for truckers that can lead to accidents. We are skilled at identifying and acquiring crucial pieces of evidence, too, including driver logs and trucking company records.

Please reach out to us today to discuss your case and receive support by filling out our online form or calling (661) 323-1400.

Posted by Lorrie Ross at 2:52 pm

What to Look for When Hiring a Truck Accident Lawyer

Tuesday, September 14, 2021

In truck accidents, it’s usually those inside the passenger vehicles that get the worst injuries. This is because commercial trucking vehicles like semi-trucks, which are on average 72 feet long and weigh 80,000 pounds, cause so much more destruction than your typical sedan. Drivers of smaller vehicles are therefore much more vulnerable.

Since multiple parties can be held responsible in a truck accident, including the driver, trucking company, or parts manufacturers, you may be able to claim compensation for your injuries if you are involved in a truck crash. To do that, it is best to find an experienced truck accident lawyer that has your best interests at heart.

As you search for the right attorney, you will ideally find a person with the following characteristics:

Experience With Truck Accident Cases

Your attorney should have at least some experience handling truck accident cases. This is a complex area of personal injury litigation, and your attorney needs to know how to properly investigate the case as well as the many state and federal laws that will be involved. Truck insurance companies almost always try to avoid paying what they owe to a victim, and a good truck accident attorney will be able to anticipate this and fight back with your best interests in mind.

Resources and Accessibility

Some firms take on so many cases they aren’t able to give each individual one the attention it deserves. That can potentially hurt your chances of claiming as much compensation as you deserve. The ideal attorney will have enough resources to be able to manage your case and provide additional staff to help respond to your calls and emails around the clock. It is never a good sign if you cannot get in touch with your attorney’s office or get a response to a question.

Positive Customer Feedback

No attorney wins every case, but you can get a sense of how competent this person is by paying attention to what others are saying. Look for online reviews about your prospective attorney to determine how easy they’ll be to work with. You want someone who is available, empathetic, detail-oriented, and can make you feel at ease during a stressful situation. If reviews suggest otherwise, you might want to look elsewhere for your attorney.

Awards and Honors

Top lawyers are usually on “Best of” lists. An attorney’s website and LinkedIn profile should list local and national recognition, along with that person’s participation in community organizations and pro-bono activities. An added bonus is if the attorney has won an award for multiple years in a row.

Though it might feel a little overwhelming to start your search for a truck accident attorney, remember that the more work you put into finding your ideal person, the better your case result is likely to be. Truck accidents are physically and emotionally traumatic events. You can improve your changes of compensation by working with the right person.

Rodriguez & Associates has decades of experience handling truck accident cases. Our knowledge covers not just engineering and legal issues, but also the day-to-day details for truckers that can lead to accidents. We are skilled at identifying and acquiring crucial pieces of evidence, too, including driver logs and trucking company records.

Please reach out to us today to discuss your case and receive support by filling out our online form or calling (661) 323-1400.

Posted by Lorrie Ross at 2:17 pm

The Most Dangerous Tasks for Oilfield Workers

Thursday, September 9, 2021

When it comes to jobs that are inherently dangerous, the oil and gas industries are at the top of the list. From 2013 to 2017, the most recent year for data, 489 oil and gas extraction workers were killed on the job, according to the U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA).

Explosions, such as the type that caused the Deepwater Horizon oil spill in 2010, are typically what come to mind when we think of oilfield accidents. But while those events are undoubtedly catastrophic, they are not necessarily the most common danger for those working on the oilfield.

The most dangerous tasks for oilfield workers include:

Driving. One of the most dangerous jobs in the oil industry doesn’t take place on the field or rig but instead on the freeway. Motor vehicle crashes cause over 50 percent of work-related deaths in the oil and gas extraction industries, according to the CDC.

This is largely due to the long hours these drivers are usually required to put in. Oilfield drivers are subject to different rules under the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration’s (FMCSA) Hours of Service regulations than other commercial truck drivers. Because of this, they often work much longer shifts. The fatigue and exhaustion from such long hours can greatly increase the risk of a catastrophic accident happening.

Derrick operations. Derrick operators build, operate, inspect, manage, and service all components of an oil derrick. This means they are constantly working with heavy, dangerous equipment that if not managed properly can lead to falling objects, crush injuries, and slips and falls.

Derrick operators are also expected to work long hours in all types of weather: extreme heat, freezing cold, wind storms, and other situations. Like drivers, these individuals battle a good deal of fatigue from their working conditions and are at greater risk for accidents because of it.

Roustabout. Roustabouts are entry-level workers who do a number of different tasks, including handling cargo, transporting materials, and maintaining equipment. The work is physically and mentally demanding, and the hours are generally long.

Roustabouts also work in extreme weather conditions and with heavy, dangerous equipment.

Many oilfield accidents are preventable when proper safety regulations are followed and basic precautions taken. It is when employers cut corners to save time that their workers wind up at risk for severe injury and even death.

If anyone knows this firsthand, it’s Rodriguez & Associates boss Daniel Rodriguez, who worked in the oilfields for years as a roustabout and mechanic. He knows firsthand how difficult and dangerous the work can be, and how important it is to give those injured by someone else’s negligence a chance for justice.

If you have been injured in an oilfield accident because of negligence, consider contacting an oilfield injury attorney and pursuing a claim. Please reach out to us today to discuss your case and receive support by filling out our online form or calling (661) 323-1400.

Posted by Lorrie Ross at 5:30 pm

What Are Soft-Tissue Injuries?

Friday, August 20, 2021

The soft tissues in the body, such as the muscles, ligaments, skin, and tendons, can sustain serious trauma during an accident. Soft tissue injuries can result in severe pain, swelling, bruising, and other physical symptoms. If you sustained a soft tissue injury due to another person’s negligence, you may be eligible for financial compensation.

Types of Soft Tissue Injuries

There are two main types of soft tissue injuries: acute traumatic injuries and overuse injuries. Acute traumatic injuries come on suddenly and often occur due to an accident, such as a motor vehicle collision or a slip and fall. Overuse injuries occur slowly and develop over time.

Specific types of soft tissue injuries include the following.

  • Open soft tissue injuries: Lacerations, avulsions, and abrasions are acute traumatic injuries that involve open wounds. These injuries often result in a loss of blood and may leave permanent scars. Open soft tissue injuries can be very painful and require lengthy recovery times.
  • Contusions: This type of soft tissue injury does not involve open wounds but does occur due to acute trauma. Blunt force usually causes a contusion, leading to pain, swelling, discoloration, and bleeding under the skin at the injury site.
  • Sprains: A sprain occurs when a ligament is partially torn, usually in the knees, ankles, and wrists. This type of soft tissue injury also occurs due to acute trauma and may take weeks to heal.
  • Strains: This injury often occurs due to overuse, force, or stretching. Strains typically involve the muscles or the tendons and can severely limit mobility during the recovery period.
  • Tendonitis: This overuse injury occurs when the tendons, bands of tissue that connects muscle to bones, become inflamed. It often affects the elbows, hands, shoulders, hips, knees, and other joints.
  • Whiplash: This condition is a soft tissue injury that often occurs during a car accident. Whiplash occurs when the neck suddenly moves back and forth in a forceful, unnatural way. As a result, the muscles and tendons in the neck and upper back tear and twist, leading to serious pain.

Signs and Symptoms of a Soft Tissue Injury

A soft tissue injury may not be apparent at first, even after an instance of acute trauma. The signs of the condition may begin slowly and worsen over time. Common symptoms of a soft tissue injury include the following.

  • Pain
  • Swelling
  • Visible bruising
  • Bleeding
  • Muscle weakness
  • A limited range of motion
  • Joint instability
  • An inability to carry heavy weight
  • Muscle cramping or spasms
  • A lump or knot at the injury site

Legal Options After a Soft Tissue Injury

Many incidents can lead to a soft tissue injury. For example, you may sustain whiplash when another vehicle collides into the back of your car. You may slip on a puddle of water at the grocery store and sustain a contusion on your tailbone. These injuries can be very painful, requiring medical care and weeks of recovery time.

If you sustained a soft tissue injury due to another person’s negligence, you may qualify for an insurance claim or lawsuit. Through your claim, you can recover compensation for the medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other damages you sustained due to the soft tissue injury. To determine whether you are eligible for legal action, speak to a Bakersfield premises liability attorney as soon as possible.

 

Posted by highrank at 3:06 pm

Common Injuries in a Slip and Fall Accident

Tuesday, August 10, 2021

Each year, millions of Americans seek emergency medical services after suffering injuries in a slip and fall accident. Slip and fall incidents can result in devastating harm, including spinal cord damage, soft tissue injuries, broken bones, and more. If someone else’s actions are responsible for your slip and fall, you may be eligible for financial compensation. 

Broken Bones

Broken bones and fractures are very common after a slip and fall accident. A fall can place a significant amount of stress and force on different parts of the body, leading to a fracture. The hips, knees, and wrists are especially susceptible to damage during these types of accidents. The risk of a broken bone during a slip and fall increases with age, meaning that elderly people are the most likely to suffer this type of injury.

Soft Tissue Injuries

The soft tissues refer to the muscles, tendons, ligaments, and skin. During a slip and fall, these tissues can become strained, torn, or bruised, leading to severe pain and limited mobility. Symptoms of soft tissue injuries are not always immediately apparent after an accident and may not appear for days or even weeks after your initial accident. Without prompt treatment, however, soft tissue damage can lead to chronic pain. 

Traumatic Brain Damage

Traumatic brain injuries (TBIs) occur when you sustain any type of damage to your head. These injuries can occur when an object collides into you, when your head hits a hard surface, or when an object penetrates your skull. You can easily hit your head during a slip and fall accident, leading to a TBI and potentially life-altering complications.

Brain injuries can range from concussions, bumps, and bruises to more severe injuries, such as skull fractures, hemorrhages, and hematomas. However, any type of head injury can be extremely serious and should be treated like a medical emergency. If you hit your head after a slip and fall, seek medical attention immediately.

Spinal Cord Damage

The spinal cord is responsible for transmitting messages between our brain and the rest of our body. During a slip and fall accident, the vertebrae in the spinal cord can break or one of the discs in your back can slip or become herniated. Any back injury can result in serious pain and limited mobility, but spinal cord damage is often more severe.

Any damage to the spinal cord can result in permanent paralysis below the injury site. This type of injury may also result in neurologic disability and sensory impairment. Without prompt medical attention, spinal cord injuries can be fatal. 

What to Do After a Slip and Fall Accident

If you are injured in a slip and fall accident, it is important to remain calm and seek help as soon as possible. If the fall occurs in a store or at another place of business, ask to fill out an incident report to document the accident. If you have sustained serious injuries or if the accident involved a crime, such as physical assault, call 911 and report the accident to law enforcement. Seek medical attention immediately after the accident and save all records related to your treatment and injuries. 

Once you receive medical attention, contact a California slip and fall accident attorney. Depending on the circumstances surrounding your accident, you may be eligible for financial compensation. Speak to a lawyer as soon as possible following your accident to discuss your legal options.

Posted by highrank at 3:01 pm

California Texting While Driving Laws and Statistics

Wednesday, July 28, 2021

“It will only take a second.” 

“Mom wants to know where I am.” 

“Work had a question.”

These are just a few of the various excuses people have used to rationalize texting while driving. They’re also thoughts people have had right before they cause a major car accident.

Texting while driving is illegal in the state of California, and for good reasons. Because drivers take their hands, eyes, and mind off the road when texting, it’s an especially risky form of distracted driving. According to Go Safely, California, a campaign from the California Office of Traffic Safety (OTS), the average time your eyes are off the road while texting is five seconds. At 55 miles per hour, that’s the equivalent of traveling the length of an entire football field blindfolded. Additionally, engaging in a visual-manual task like texting increases your risk of getting into a crash by three times.

Despite these alarming statistics, plenty of Californians still text and drive. In 2019, the most recent year for data, 57.9 percent of California drivers surveyed said they had been hit or nearly hit by a driver talking or texting on a mobile device.

California law prohibits motorists from using a cellphone or mobile device while driving unless they are in “hands free” mode. That includes writing or reading texts, and applies to anyone driving on California roadways, even if you don’t live in California. The only exceptions to this law are if you are driving on private property or making an emergency call to something like an ambulance. 

According to California Vehicle Code, Section 23123, a violation of this law is punishable by a base fine of $20 for a first offense and by a fine of $50 for all subsequent infractions. That sounds like a small amount of money, but in reality, you will pay more — sometimes over $250 — once assessments are added. 

Previously, drivers did not receive a point on their driving record for texting and driving, but that has changed as of July 1, 2021. A texting-while-driving violation can now result in one point to your record if the violation is within 36 months of a prior distracted driving offense. Points added to your record can increase rates or even result in your license being revoked.

All of these laws are aimed at avoiding crashes, injuries, and fatalities that happen because of texting while driving. No matter what excuse our brains may tell us in the moment, texting while driving is never safe, and the possible consequences of doing it can be devastating to more than just the driver’s life.

Rodriguez & Associates takes the laws around texting and driving very seriously. We are willing to fight for anyone negatively impacted by another driver’s negligence. If you have been injured in a car accident caused by texting and driving, you may be able to claim compensation for damages. Please reach out to us today to discuss your case and receive support by filling out our online form or calling (661) 323-1400.

Posted by Lorrie Ross at 9:07 pm

Truck Driver Fatigue is a Leading Cause of Crashes

Wednesday, July 28, 2021

Some of the most devastating vehicle crashes are those that involve large commercial trucks. And one of the main causes of such crashes is driver fatigue. When those behind the wheel of a semi-truck, big rig, or other large commercial truck are fatigued or drowsy, they substantially increase the risk of causing a major accident. Many of those accidents are fatal.

In 2018, the most recent year for data, 4,951 people were killed in crashes involving large trucks in California. Of that number, 71 percent were occupants of other vehicles. 

Any person who drives while feeling fatigued increases their risk of causing an accident. Because of their size (the average semi-truck weighs 80,000 pounds and is 70 to 80 feet long), large commercial trucks can cause devastating damage to both property and lives if they are involved in a crash. Given that, truckers who drive while fatigued or exhausted take an inherently risky situation and make it even more dangerous. 

There are a few common causes of truck driver fatigue:

Driving for too long. Truck drivers in the U.S. are required by law to follow Hours of Service regulations. These stipulate how long they are allowed to drive and when they must take breaks.

Drivers carrying property (e.g., supplies, furniture, etc.) are legally allowed to drive a maximum of 11 hours, according to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration. They may do so after having 10 consecutive hours of off-duty time.

Although driving hours are supposed to be monitored and enforced by electronic logs, drivers often go beyond these limits in order to meet a deadline. Trucking companies may not necessarily enforce the rules set down by Hours of Service regulations. Finally, even when a trucker follows the 11-hour maximum, they are still driving for an extremely long stretch of time and are at risk of extreme fatigue. 

Irregular driving schedules and inadequate sleep. Truckers don’t have schedules that follow a pattern of regular days and hours. Instead, they might work long stretches at a time that are then followed by lengthy periods off duty. Because of this, their sleeping patterns may be inconsistent, degrading the level of rest they actually get. For some, these irregular hours also make sleep more difficult, which can lead to fatigue over time. Over-the-counter sleep aids can increase this problem since they cause drowsiness that may not immediately wear off upon waking. 

Substance use. Substance use and abuse among truck drivers is a serious problem, with many drivers turning to “uppers” like amphetamines to stay awake during their long shifts. Unfortunately, one of the side-effects of such drugs is that they can cause extreme fatigue once they wear off, putting both the truck driver and others on the road at risk.

Unrealistic expectations. Some truck drivers feel enormous pressure from their trucking company or subcontractor to meet very tight deadlines. These deadlines do not always factor in traffic delays, weather problems, and other incidences on the road. Because of that, delivery deadlines can become unrealistic and force truckers to work longer hours than normal without breaks.  

Any of these things can lead to poor decision-making, delayed reactions, shorter attention spans, and even more aggressive behavior on the part of the truck driver or their trucking company. 

If you are involved in a truck accident, proving driver fatigue and negligence will be easier with the help of an experienced truck accident attorney. Rodriguez & Associates can assist you in navigating this complex area of litigation as you seek compensation for damages. Please reach out to us today to discuss your case and receive support by filling out our online form or calling (661) 323-1400.

Posted by Lorrie Ross at 9:06 pm

California Statistics and Laws on Drinking and Driving

Monday, July 26, 2021

Drinking and driving, or driving under the influence (DUI) of alcohol or drugs, impairs a person’s ability to drive safely and threatens the well-being of other motorists, bicyclists, and pedestrians that they encounter on the road. 

Over the last 40 years, public information campaigns such as Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) have set out to eliminate drunk driving through education, prevention, and enforcement by advocating for stricter laws to be passed for drunk driving offences, and while this has helped decrease the amount of DUIs nationwide, it has not ended the problem. In 2019, according to MADD, 10,142 people were killed due to drunk driving which makes it #1 cause of death on America’s roads. The state of California accounted for 1,066 of the nation’s drunk driving fatalities, approximately 10%. 

California Drinking and Driving Statistics 

The most comprehensive statistics for alcohol-impaired driving is from Responsibility.org for the year of 2018. 

  • Total alcohol-impaired driving fatalities: 1,069
  • Under 21 alcohol-impaired driving fatalities: 113
  • 69.8% of alcohol-impaired driving fatalities had a BAC of 0.15+
  • 77.9% of drivers with BAC 0.15+ were repeat offenders
  • Total DUI arrests: 127,250 (Nationwide: 1,001,329)

California Drunk Driving Laws

In California, it is illegal to drive while under the influence of drugs or alcohol or with a blood alcohol concentration of 0.08 or higher. The law does not distinguish between prescription, over-the-counter or illegal drugs. If the drug or medication impairs your ability to drive safely, you can still be charged with a DUI.

California has enforced tougher laws for first time and repeat offenders in an effort to reduce, and hopefully eliminate, drunk driving on our roads. Here is a summary of laws about driving under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs from the California Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) handbook. 

  • It is illegal to use or possess alcohol or cannabis products in a vehicle. Any open containers must be stored in the trunk or where passengers do not sit.
  • It is illegal for any person to operate a vehicle with the following BAC limits:
    • 0.08% or higher, if the person is 21 years +
    • 0.01% or higher, if the person is under 21 years old
    • 0.04% or higher, when a passenger for hire is in the vehicle at the time of the offense
  • It is illegal for drivers under 21 years of age to carry alcohol inside a vehicle unless accompanied by a parent or other person as specified by law and the container is full, sealed, and unopened. If caught, the car may be impounded for up to 30 days, driving privileges may be suspended for up to 1 year or delay the issuance of a first driver’s license for up to 1 year, or a fine of up to $1000 may be charged.

Similar laws also prohibit riding bikes and scooters or driving boats under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs.

We Represent DUI Accident Victims in Kern County and California

A victim of a drunk driving accident can suffer physically, emotionally, and financially. Medical bills can pile up, they may not be able to work or perform their job as before, and their mental state may be different due to the accident. The criminal court system can punish a drunk driver for the accident, but it does not compensate victims of the accident. 

This is when a victim of a drunk driving accident would seek expert legal representation to pursue claims in a civil court for recovery of monetary damages from medical bills, pain and suffering, lost wages from missed work, property damage, and/or modifications to a home or car because of the injuries incurred. Our experienced personal injury attorneys at Rodriguez & Associates, are standing by to represent you or a loved one who has been injured as a result of a DUI accident. We will do everything possible to hold the wrongdoer accountable.

We represent DUI accident victims in Kern County and throughout California. Call us to request a free consultation at (661) 323-1400 or toll-free (800) 585-9262.

Posted by Lorrie Ross at 7:29 pm

Common Injuries Associated With Oilfield Accidents

Thursday, July 22, 2021

California is one of the top oil-producing states in the country. A lot of that production is based in Kern and Ventura counties, and provides employment to residents of those areas. 

Oil field work is an inherently dangerous job. The Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries notes that 489 oil and gas extraction workers were killed on the job between 2013 and 2017, the most recent time period for data. 

While oilfield accidents aren’t entirely avoidable, many could be prevented with the right safety precautions and protocols in place. But all too often, oil well processing and transport facilities skirt or outright violate state and federal regulations, making their workplaces extremely dangerous and even life-threatening to employees.

The top safety and health hazards that can result in fatalities for these workers are vehicle accidents, being struck by, caught in, or caught between equipment, explosions and fires, falls, being trapped in confined spaces, and exposure to harmful chemicals.

A number of injuries are common on the oilfield because of these types of accidents.

Burns. Workers can get severe burns from steam, fire, hot equipment, and electric shock. Serious injuries, such as third-degree burns, can cause permanent nerve damage as well as disfigurement. They normally require skin grafts for wound closure as well as rehabilitation. 

Fractures and broken bones. On the oilfield, fractures and broken bones can happen when a worker falls, gets struck by an object, or is involved in explosions or transportation accidents. These injuries can put oilfield employees out of work for weeks or months at a time, seriously impacting their ability to provide for their household.

Permanent Hearing Loss. When oil companies fail to supply their workers with adequate protection, they put those individuals at risk for all sorts of injuries. Hearing loss can happen when workers are constantly surrounded by loud machinery but not given proper earplugs for the job. This hearing loss can be lifelong, which seriously impacts a person’s ability to do their job.

Brain Injuries. Oilfield workers can get a brain injury if they are hit on the head by a moving object or sustain a severe fall. Brain injuries can range from mild concussions to traumatic brain injuries that have lifelong consequences. The most severe types of brain injuries hinder a person from doing even the most basic day-to-day tasks like showering and feeding themselves.

Soft Tissue Injuries. Because of the repetitive nature of many tasks on the oilfield, such as operating machinery, injuries of the soft tissue are quite common. These muscle and tendon tears may start off as small, barely noticeable injuries and develop into more serious ones over time. 

It is important to take note of all injuries as soon as they happen, however minor they may seem at first. Many oilfield injuries are preventable, and if your injury is the result of your employer treating safety precautions lightly or violating them, you may be able to make a claim for compensation. To do that, you must have evidence of the injuries, which is why documenting them is so important. 

Rodriguez & Associates has decades of experience representing those injured in the oilfield because of someone else’s negligence. Daniel Rodriguez himself worked in the oilfields for years as a roustabout and mechanic. Knowing first-hand how difficult and dangerous the work can be, he and his firm are especially attuned to the rights of workers in this industry when accidents and injuries occur. 

Please reach out to us today to discuss your case and receive support by filling out our online form or calling (661) 323-1400.

Posted by Lorrie Ross at 4:07 pm

What Is Sudden Unintended Acceleration?

Thursday, July 15, 2021

Car accidents can happen at any time, in any place, and for any reason. Many of these collisions occur due to negligent driving behaviors, such as speeding, running a red light, or driving under the influence. Other accidents occur due to bad weather, poorly maintained roads, and sudden unintended acceleration. If you are injured in an accident due to sudden unintended acceleration, you could hold the at-fault party accountable for your losses through an insurance claim or lawsuit.

Understanding Sudden Unintended Acceleration

Sudden unintended acceleration refers to the unexpected or uncontrolled acceleration of a motor vehicle. Some drivers may be unable to brake or control the vehicle once it starts to accelerate. This dangerous occurrence can cause you to lose control of your vehicle, resulting in a motor vehicle accident. If another vehicle in your vicinity experiences sudden unintended acceleration, the driver can crash into without warning—leading to severe injuries and vehicle damage.

Many factors may contribute to sudden unintended acceleration. These accidents may occur due to defective vehicle parts, such as defective brakes or a mechanical or electrical issue inside of the vehicle. However, some of these accidents occur due to driver error. For example, a driver may accidentally step on the gas pedal instead of the brake, causing him or her to collide into another vehicle.

Legal Options for Sudden Unintended Acceleration Victims

Victims of sudden unintended acceleration have multiple options for compensation after their accident. Since California is a fault accident state, the at-fault party is responsible for the collision must pay for his or her victims’ damages. If you are injured after a driver accidentally hit the gas instead of the brakes and collides into you, you could file an insurance claim or lawsuit against him or her.

Many cases of sudden unintended acceleration occur due to a defective vehicle part, however. In this situation, you could file a product liability lawsuit against the manufacturer, distributor, or retailer of that defective part. You may need help from a Bakersfield car accident attorney to identify the nature of the defect.

What to Do If You Experience Sudden Unintended Acceleration

If your vehicle starts accelerating uncontrollably while you are on the road, it is important to remain calm and take careful steps to regain control of the vehicle. The following tips can help you reduce the risk of a serious collision in the event of sudden unintended acceleration.

  • Try hitting your brakes and apply as much force as possible. Keep the pressure on the brakes steady. Do not pump the brakes.
  • Avoid jerking your steering wheel—this could cause you to lose control of your vehicle. 
  • Do not turn off your engine. This will not stop the vehicle; it will only cause you to lose control of the brakes and your steering wheel, which you need to safely bring your car to a stop.
  • Put your vehicle in neutral or depress the clutch. This will hopefully stop the engine from moving your vehicle forward.
  • Once your vehicle starts to slow down, pull over in a safe location on the side of the road. 
  • When the vehicle comes to a stop, turn off the engine, set the parking brake, and exit the vehicle.

While these tips can help protect yourself in case of sudden acceleration, accidents may still occur. As soon as possible after your collision, seek medical attention, call 911, and contact a Bakersfield car accident lawyer. Your attorney will be able to evaluate your case and help craft a compelling case for your right to compensation.

Posted by highrank at 4:53 pm