Boston Car Accident Lawyer Blog
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In recent months, we have heard several news accounts of cars that crashed into buildings in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. In some of these cases, there was a car that allegedly crashed into a home or apartment building while residents were sleeping. In other cases, we have heard about cars crashing into Massachusetts restaurants and bars. According to a recent news article in the Marblehead Patch, an elderly driver allegedly crashed his vehicle into a local real estate business.

for-sale-sign-1445308Authorities are reporting that the single vehicle crash occurred around 2:30 p.m. in Marblehead, Massachusetts. Witnesses say the car had apparently lost control and veered off the road causing it to crash into the real estate broker’s office. In addition to the elderly driver, there was at least one other occupant at the time of the accident, who was also elderly. Continue reading

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In order to become a police officer, you generally have to take a mental fitness exam by way of a writing diagnostic tool, pass a physical fitness test, and pass an academic skills test. At this point, you are assigned a score based upon your overall performance on the application test battery and will be selected or not selected for a future academy class based upon your scores on these tests.

mPIXIhIAs part of the mental fitness exam, they also generally include a personality survey that asks how you will respond in certain situations. In some cases, they are looking for particular actions and responses, and, in other cases, they are trying to assess whether you are answering the questions truthfully.

According to a recent news article from the Boston Globe, the Methuen Police Department allegedly preferred officer candidates who answered they would not arrest their relatives or fellow police officers for drunk driving. These allegations came from findings of the Massachusetts Civil Service Commission. Continue reading

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Many workers in Boston and around the Commonwealth of Massachusetts enjoy meeting friends and coworkers at local bars for happy hour on a Thursday or Friday evening right after work. However, happy hour in the rest of America has a somewhat different meaning than it does in Massachusetts.

drinks-1326738In most cities and towns across the nation, when someone wants to go to a bar for happy hour, they are hoping to get discounted drinks and sometimes appetizers. Many bars will discount draught beers and mixed drinks between the hours of 5 p.m. and 7 p.m. to attract people to come for happy hour. This is not how it works in Boston, because happy hour drink specials are illegal out of an effort to curb drunk driving car accidents. Continue reading

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While many fans of 1980s and 1990s movies were expecting there to be flying cars by now, due to the dangers that would pose, it is much more likely that self-driving cars will eventually be the future of automotive travel. There have been several different methods for developing a self-driving car, including ones that would require special guiding roadways, but because the infrastructure costs would be prohibitive, any design that ultimately succeeds will probably have to work on already existing roadways.caraccident4

Google in the Silicon Valley is developing one self-driving car prototype that has gained significant notoriety.   Their new self-driving car is already being tested on public roadways in California.

But for the first time, one of these cars has been involved in a car accident that has resulted in personal injury, according to a recent news article from News 7 Boston. Continue reading

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According to a recent news article from CBS Local Boston, a woman from Lynn, Massachusetts was just arrested for drunk driving after she allegedly crashed her vehicle into a fire truck in Wilmington in Middlesex County.

mQo4CWyAuthorities say the crash occurred just after noon on a Friday and the alleged at-fault driver was a 46-year-old woman. Obviously firefighters were already on the scene and were able to immediately respond to assist defendant. She was trapped under the fire truck and emergency personnel used the Jaws-of-Life to cut away the wreckage, so she could be freed from her destroyed vehicle. The fire truck suffered heavy damage to its front end from the crash and from the rescue effort.

The Middlesex County District Attorney said defendant has been charged with operating a motor vehicle under the influence of intoxicating liquor (OUI), negligent operation of a motor vehicle, and possession of an open container of alcohol in a motor vehicle, and was given a civil motor vehicle infraction citation for a marked lanes violation. Continue reading

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According to a recent news report from CBS Local Boston, a man was killed in a three-vehicle car accident in Methuen. A Massachusetts State Police spokesperson released a statement saying the driver of Honda Accord was in the southbound lanes when he allegedly veered into the breakdown lane for reasons not yet known.

Car crash--25-4-10-007After the Honda Accord allegedly entered the breakdown lane, authorities say it collided with a flatbed tow truck hauling a car, also in the breakdown lane of the side of the southbound travel lanes on Interstate 495. After colliding with the flatbed tow truck, the Accord further lost control and headed back into the roadway, where it allegedly collided with another vehicle. Continue reading

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There is no question that large commercial trucks are essential to our economy. Moving freight, delivering packages, transporting cars and a variety of other functions in life would certainly be much more difficult without large trucks, including semi tractor-trailers.

truckforwardWhile most truck drivers are safe professionals, there are some who aren’t, and when a truck crashes or collides with another vehicle or pedestrian, it can result in serious personal injury or death. In order to prevent serious personal injury and death involving truck crashes, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) performs a variety of studies and comes up with regulations to make trucks safer. Continue reading

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Barnstable County, Massachusetts and Cape Cod is known for beautiful colonial homes along the historic coast. According to a recent news article from My Fox Boston, a 20-year-old alleged drunk driver crashed his pickup truck into a Cape Cod house built in 1769.

921217_crashed_carThe historic residence and its adjacent antiques shop is located at the end of Route 130. Authorities say when you come to the end of the road, you have to either turn right on Route 28 or turn left on Route 28, but instead, alleged drunk driver did not turn left or right and headed straight across Route 28 and plowed into the 246-year-old home, while the owners were sleeping inside at around 1:15 a.m. The truck also took out a traffic control box on the side of the road before hitting the house. Continue reading

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Car manufacturers have apparently given up on trying to battle driver distraction while the vehicle is in motion. Recently, a number of them have unveiled technologies that are intended to make it easier for drivers to stay connected and communicating while behind the wheel. acar

These include so-called “heads-up” technologies that require the driver to look up at a hovering hologram on their windshield in order to engage the communication system, which can include voice and video calls, social media messages and e-mails.

The idea is driver will have to at least keep their eyes in the general direction of the road, rather than looking down. Manufacturers reason this will reduce crashes because drivers will have their eyes up ahead.

Our Boston traffic accident attorneys know this thinking is flawed and problematic. It assumes that just because someone’s head is turned in a general direction that he or she is paying attention to what they are looking at.

Researchers with the National Safety Council have studied this issue extensively. They concluded effective multitasking is a myth because the human brain simply can’t divide its attention among higher-level thinking functions. Talking and driving are both considered higher-level thinking functions. That’s why drivers aren’t any safer on a hands-free cell phone than on a hand-held device; because ultimately, they are still engaged in two thinking tasks at once.

In the same way, drivers might be looking at the windshield and not actually seeing what’s on the road in front of them.

The Washington Post in an article detailing the new technology referred to the front car windshield as the “once-sacred place of clarity.”

Now, reports are it will be cluttered with images informing drivers of speed and navigation, as well as cell phone notifications, text messages and social media alerts.

Those behind the technology – which include the auto manufacturers, as well as a number of technology start-up firms, insist these displays are going to make us all safer by preventing drivers from fumbling with their smartphones and navigation systems.

But safety advocates counter these devices simply create even more ways to steal driver’s attention from what should be their sole focus behind the wheel: Driving.

Carrying out that task safely requires full focus, and creating systems that make it easier for drivers to engage in numerous tasks at once will only serve to further the erroneous notion that these activities are somehow safe.

Auto manufacturers are competing for increasingly tech-savvy buyers, and all are trying to one-up each other. Safety advocates note that makers of these “heads-up” features have backed their assertions of safety with any scientific showing. They only insist if you’re looking straight ahead, than it’s safe. But study after study has shown that isn’t so.

Select models of BMW, Volvo and Hyundai are offering these features in new model vehicles. But as the technology becomes less expensive, we are likely to see it standard in most vehicles, even lower-end models.

Some warn of pedestrians and bicyclists, while others suggest points of interest. One even displays a so-called “ghost car” that motorists could follow as an alternative to standard navigation directions read aloud.

If you have been injured in a car accident in Boston, contact our offices today.

Call the Law Offices of Jeffrey S. Glassman for a free and confidential appointment — 1-888-367-2900.

Additional Resources:

Windshield Devices Bring Distracted Driving Debate to Eye Level, May 29, 2015, By Matt Richtel, The New York Times

More Blog Entries:

100 Deadliest Days for Teen Drivers in Massachusetts Underway, May 29, 2015, Boston Auto Accident Attorney Blog

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Americans love their pets. Dogs are among the most popular pet with some 78 million canines residing in 46 million homes in the U.S., according to the American Pet Products Association.dogincar

One AAA survey revealed nearly 60 percent of respondents had driven with their dog in the vehicle at some point in the last year. When a dog (or any pet, really) is unrestrained in a moving vehicle, the potential for distraction is high.

Respondents to the survey conceded that while driving with their dogs, they engaged in the following:

  • Using arms or hands to restrict the dog’s movement or hold dog in place while braking (23 percent)
  • Petting the animal (52 percent)
  • Reaching into back seat to interact with dog (18 percent)
  • Using hands and arms to prevent dog from climbing from back seat to the front (19 percent)
  • Allowing dog to sit in lap (17 percent)
  • Giving treats or food to the dog (13 percent)
  • Playing with dog (4 percent)
  • Taking photo of dog (12 percent)

Noteworthy is the fact that the “taking a photo of pet” increased three-fold in the last four years. In 2011, when respondents answered this same survey, just 4 percent admitted they took photos of their animals in the car. By 2015, that figure climbed to 12 percent. The increasing pervasiveness of smartphones is no doubt central to this, but it doesn’t make doing it any safer.

Engaging in any activity other than driving behind the wheel is known as “distracted driving,” and our Boston traffic collision attorneys have seen far too many cases in which families have been utterly devastated and forever altered because of the poor, short-term decisions of a single driver.

As we are in the midst of the summer travel season, many people choose to bring their pet, rather than board them or have someone else care for them. There is nothing wrong with this. Problems by-and-large result primarily when pets are not restrained in  the vehicle.That’s when drivers are tempted to interact, engage or restrict them, and that’s when their eyes are torn from the road.

The AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety reports even taking your eyes of the road for two seconds doubles your crash risk.

What seems especially crazy is nearly 85 percent agree having an unrestrained dog in the car while it’s moving is perilous. Yet 6 in 10 drivers with dogs still do it. In fact, only about 15 percent of dog owners who drive with their pet use some kind of pet restraint while the car is in motion.

Those who don’t reason their pet is generally calm and won’t need it, it’s too complicated or troublesome or that they want the animal to have fun/be able to put their head out the window during the trip.

But consider this: If you are in an accident traveling at 50 mph and your 10-pound dog is unrestrained in the vehicle at the time, not only is your animal likely to be seriously hurt or killed, its body will exert roughly 500 pounds of force. In the same way, an 80-pound dog unrestrained in a car that crashes traveling 30 mph will exert 2,400 pounds of force. That is a lethal amount of force slamming into he driver, other passengers or ejected out the windshield toward other vehicles.

If you are planning on taking your pet for a drive – even for a short trip – read these travel tips from AAA to learn more about how to safely transport them.

If you are injured in an accident in Massachusetts, call the Law Offices of Jeffrey S. Glassman for a free and confidential appointment — 1-888-367-2900.

Additional Resources:

Survey: Unrestrained Pets Lead to Distracted Driving, June 23, 2015, CBS Boston

More Blog Entries:

Pedestrian Dragged Hundreds of Feet in Car Crash – Western Massachusetts, June 13, 2015, Boston Car Accident Attorney Blog