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Woman Charges Uber with Sexual Assault and False Imprisonment by Driver

Car Accident Lawsuit New YorkOn February 23, a Minnesota woman brought a lawsuit against ride-share service Uber, charging that the company does not adequately screen its drivers and that, after using an Uber service, the driver sexually assaulted her and held her against her will.

The woman was identified as “Jane Doe.” The driver was identified as Abdel Jaquez. The complaint was filed in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California.

Was Uber negligent in hiring and screening?

The facts of the suit indicate that on August 5, 2016, the plaintiff and some friends used the Uber app to get a ride. The driver, Jacquez, gave the group his direct number to get in touch with him later in the evening, for a second ride.

During the second ride, Jacquez is alleged to have propositioned the plaintiff. After she refused, he grabbed her aggressively and committed a sexual assault.

The plaintiff’s suit claims Uber Technologies is negligent in its driver hiring and screening practices. It is alleged that a sufficient background check would have revealed that Jaquez had a prior arrest for a sexual crime against another person. The usual standard in the taxi industry is a thorough background check based on fingerprints. The charge alleges that, had Uber done such a check, the incident could have been avoided.

The suit states that Uber, as a transportation company and common carrier, is “directly liable for its negligent hiring, supervision, and retention of Jaquez, directly liable for its advertising misrepresentations holding out its transportation service as a safer alternative to taxis for women.”

The suit also states that the company “placed profits over safety by deliberately lowering the bar for drivers in order to rapidly expand its network of drivers and thus its profits.”

Growing evidence of Uber liability raises concerns

The case unfortunately joins a growing list of cases in which ride-share services like Uber and Lyft have been found guilty of negligence in screening their drivers. The drivers have been charged with a variety of actions, including murder, manslaughter, and rape.

At one point, the ride-share services were attempting to argue that the liability was borne by the drivers alone, as they are contractors and not employees. Courts, however, have increasingly found the companies liable for not conducting proper background checks.

In addition, the companies charge a safe ride fee intended to cover motor vehicle screenings and driver safety education.

Recently, the California Public Utilities Commission ruled that Uber and Lyft do owe a duty to passengers. More stringent regulations make the responsibilities and potential liabilities of rideshare services more congruent with traditional taxi drivers. The responsibilities include regular vehicle inspections, more stringent and detailed background checks, mandated proof of liability insurance, and heightened transparency about past driver suspensions and deactivations.

Filing a lawsuit against a ride sharing company

Attorneys at Edelman, Krasin & Jaye understand ride sharing liability laws inside and out. We are experienced with laws concerning the ride-share services like Uber and Lyft. Our commercial vehicle accident lawyers guide plaintiffs through the process of filing Uber accident claims and help them pursue maximum compensation for their injuries and losses.  Call today for a free consultation today.

Additional Uber lawsuit resources

  1. Farivar, Cyrus. “Woman: After I Rebuffed My Uber Driver’s Advances, He Tried to Rape Me.” ArsTechnica, February 25, 2017. https://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/2017/02/woman-sues-uber-claims-driver-with-prior-record-attempted-to-rape-her/
  2. Rosenblatt, Joel. “Uber Settles Lawsuit Over Driver Sexual Assault Claims.” Bloomberg, November 3, 2016. https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2016-11-03/uber-settles-lawsuit-over-driver-sexual-assault-claims

Traffic Deaths Show Most Dramatic Rise in More than 50 Years

auto Accident Victim Waits Outside of Her CarAccording to data from the National Safety Council (NSC), traffic deaths likely rose 6% in 2016. Combined with the 14% climb in 2015, the number of traffic deaths in the past two years have shown the most dramatic spike since 1964 — more than 50 years ago.

The preliminary 2016 figures indicate that up to 40,000 people died on the nation’s roadways last year. The rise means that 2016 was the most dangerous year on the road in nine years, since 2007.

Roughly 4.6 million people on the nation’s roads were injured significantly enough to seek medical attention. The overall cost of vehicle accidents was $432 billion.

Driver actions the cause of growing crash rate

Why are deaths and accidents so high, and rising at such a significant rate?

Unfortunately, it seems to be the actions of drivers themselves. Eighty-three percent of drivers polled by the NSC believe that driving is a safety concern. However, in the same group, 64% confess to feeling comfortable speeding, 47% text, either manually or via voice apps, and 13% drive while under the influence of marijuana. Ten percent drive under the influence of alcohol.

The NSC points out that these actions — and any accidents they cause — are entirely preventable. Deborah A.P. Hersman, NSC President and CEO of the NSC, also observed that the U.S. is behind the rest of the developed world in road deaths.

Traffic death solutions advised

The NSC also wants a number of solutions implemented. If enacted across the country, the nation’s deaths from vehicle accidents could be near zero. The solutions include:

  • Expand existing texting while driving laws, including hands-free texting.
  • Require placing ignition interlocks for vehicles of people found guilty of drunk driving and increased education about substance impairment.
  • Utilize automated enforcement methods to catch speeding drivers.
  • Move seat belt laws to primary enforcement from secondary and expand their use to every passenger in every kind of vehicle.
  • Use a three-tiered license system for all new drivers less than 21 years of age. (Currently, this is done only for drivers less than 18 years old.)
  • Manufacture vehicles with safety technologies that can save lives. These include adaptive headlights, automatic emergency braking, monitoring of blind spots, and lane department warnings.
  • Strengthen motorcycle helmet requirements.
  • Institute comprehensive pedestrian safety programs.

Do you need to consult an attorney about an accident?

Edelman, Krasin & Jaye attorneys are seasoned practitioners with wide experience in New York State law regarding accidents. If you or a loved one have been hurt or lost a life in a vehicle accident, we can work with you to gain compensation for lost time at work, medical bills, and more. We can explain liability laws in New York State.

If this has happened to you, call us today for a complimentary consultation. Our vehicle accident attorney team will work for you to receive just compensation.

Additional “traffic death” resources

  1. National Safety Council. Driver Safety Public Opinion Poll. February 2017. http://www.nsc.org/NewsDocuments/2017/Driver-Safety-Poll.pdf
  2. Statistics Department, National Safety Council. NSC Motor Vehicle Fatality Estimates. http://www.nsc.org/NewsDocuments/2017/12-month-estimates.pdf

Report Cites Multiple Cases of Rape, Sexual Abuse in Nursing Homes

nursing home residentA new investigation by news organization CNN reveals that U.S. nursing homes can all too easily be sites of rape and sexual abuse against patients by the very people charged with providing their care.

The report, “Sick, Dying and Raped in America’s Nursing Homes,” focuses on the case of George Kpingbah, a Minnesota nursing home aide who committed multiple sexual offenses over a period of at least six years. Despite the repeated crimes against a vulnerable population, he was brought to justice only when the rape of an 83-year-old patient was directly witnessed by another nursing home employee.

Police, nursing homes slow to investigate evidence of abuse

The CNN reports also shines an important light on the multiple issues present in nursing home abuse nationwide.

First, nursing homes don’t always report or investigate allegations or evidence of abuse. They may not believe the allegations. Or, they may be trying to protect the reputation of the nursing home.

Second, police are also slow and sometimes reluctant to investigate. Many senior residents of nursing homes exhibit memory loss or cannot adequately recall — and adequately repeat without changing — a sequence of events. A less-than-cohesive narrative alleging rape or abuse may not elicit police belief.

Third, to successfully make a charge of rape or abuse, there must be evidence. If activities, injuries or fluids are not witnessed, captured, or documented, there may be little chance of successful prosecution and redress. Kpingbah was only suspected and charged because of a witness.

Fourth, employees who abuse nursing home residents are often free to simply move to the next position. There is no central place for flagging suspicious or accusations.

Fifth, there is no national database for reporting elder abuse.

Sixth, and perhaps most heart-breaking, the elderly themselves are often ashamed and reluctant to report abuse.

The law and your loved ones

If you suspect that your loved one has suffered rape or sexual assault in a nursing home, you have multiple recourse. Depending on the nature of the injury, the perpetrator may be charged with rape, sexual assault, or elder abuse. A perpetrator can also be charged with personal injury or wrongful death.

If nursing homes had knowledge of the abuse and failed to prevent it, they too can be charged with crimes including personal injury or wrongful death.

If you or a loved one has suffered harm

If you or a loved one in Long Island or New York City have suffered harm because of any type of elder abuse, please contact us immediately to discuss possible legal recourse and redress.

Edelman, Krasin & Jaye are leading personal injury lawyers in New York City and Long Island. We will fight for those harmed at the hands of negligent healthcare professionals.

Call Edelman, Krasin & Jaye for a confidential, complimentary consultation. We are experts who will provide you with options.

Additional nursing home abuse resources

  1. Elder Abuse. Healthy Aging. Office of Women’s Health, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Womenshealth.gov. https://www.womenshealth.gov/aging/safety-abuse/elder-abuse.html
  2. Ellis, Blake and Melanie Hicken. “Sick, Dying and Raped in America’s Nursing Homes.” CNN. http://www.cnn.com/interactive/2017/02/health/nursing-home-sex-abuse-investigation/

Drowsy Driving Needs More Study, Prevention

tired woman driving her car, yawning at wheel: drowsy drivingA recent article published in the journal Sleep calls for more study and prevention of drowsy driving, noting that it is a significant hazard on the nation’s roads. The report was spearheaded by the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration (NHTSA). It calls for both more understanding of public perception of drowsy driving and development of public education and prevention methods, such as biomarkers for fatigue.

Drowsy driving causes accidents and fatalities

As the article indicates, there is currently no reliable method of testing for drowsy driving, as there is for, say, alcohol impairment. Estimates of the number of car crashes drowsy driving causes on the nation’s roads, as a result, are not definitive. Right now, drowsy driving is part of a police accident report (PAR) only when there is circumstantial evidence (such as a car being driven off a road at night) or a driver statement indicating drowsiness or fatigue.

Nonetheless, drowsy driving is known to cause a significant number of fatalities and accidents, all of which are entirely preventable.

In 2014, an estimated 846 fatalities were caused by accidents related to drowsy driving. This is roughly 2.6% of all traffic fatalities. From 2005 to 2009, the last years for which statistics are available, 85,000 vehicle crashes were caused by drowsy driving. Of these, 37,000 caused injury and 45,000 caused property damage.

The NHTSA report notes that many societal factors contribute, including the 24/7 work cycle caused by computers and smartphones, and a growing number of people holding two jobs.

Nonetheless, they believe that more education about the dangers, as well as targeted programs to understand the specific causes and potential treatment methods, such as fatigue prevention classes, will be able to decrease the number of drowsy driving accidents.

Drowsy driving in New York State

New York State’s law in cases of vehicle accidents is no-fault. This means that the insurance company of each party is responsible for paying for damages and medical bills, regardless of who was at fault for the accident.

There are some exceptions in New York State. If you or a loved one has suffered significant disfigurement, bone fracture, a permanent limitation in body organ or limb use, a significant limitation in a body function or system, or endured substantially full disability for 90 days, you may be able to bring a claim for damages against the person responsible for the accident.

Do you need to consult an attorney about an accident?

Edelman, Krasin & Jaye are experienced in New York State accident law. If you or a loved one have been hurt or lost a life in a vehicle accident, we are here for you. We can shed light on how the state determines liability. We fight for your rights.

We will be happy to discuss your case in a complimentary private consultation. Call our offices today for a free consultation with an experienced NYC & Long Island car accident lawyer.

Additional drowsy driving accident resources

  1. Higgins, J. Stephen, et al. “Asleep at the Wheel – The Road to Addressing Drowsy Driving.” Sleep, Jan. 25, 2017. The Sleep Research Society. https://oup.silverchair-cdn.com/oup/backfile/Content_public/Journal/sleep/PAP/10.1093_sleep_zsx001/2/zsx001.pdf?Expires=1487956897&Signature=cuge6lTnsAVOUJ9JvD59vm8hChQ1xvoEcdKeu2Bwd~e~1zTQDokh5DzBXis77JkwU4YPsCST8fzLwc9LibAltbyfJv-CEaoosCNvJYZA~ocIX0-NFt2xjKOZwrahPk20EmaRK1Hz0DojsRIaxsNyKfwxcSnqXac93GLCP2Q-8FCeUNG4RK0~01Gns3ong1HspSeaVnnDsLQary2oKEeKab8~OtjVyN-bijCythk1KWkir7Wrp98dh-2IzLS4T53~O0W~QAdIi4J9I52g319USHTahC9wbgwYksrSw8hgf~abtsgrGQfr2qgUjFGKFNXHeh9c6pQH6CzEXnIy2QMeSg__&Key-Pair-Id=APKAIUCZBIA4LVPAVW3Q
  2. U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Drowsy Driving: Asleep at the Wheel. https://www.cdc.gov/features/dsDrowsyDriving/index.html

Campaign Targeted at Reducing Train Accidents

In January, the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) began a campaign called “Stop! Trains Can’t” focusing on younger male drivers. Its goal is to underscore the potential danger of trying to drive across a railroad crossing when trains are approaching.

The U.S. DOT, together with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and Federal Railroad Administration (FRA), is in the midst of a two-year overall push to decrease accidents and deaths at railroad crossings throughout the nation.

Train accidents occur every three hours

It’s a needed effort. Deaths at railroad crossings rose sharply in 2014 after decreasing for a decade. In 2016, 232 people died in accidents at railroad crossings.

DOT officials stressed that these accidents are all preventable. Pedestrians and vehicle drivers should never attempt to beat a train at a crossing or to ignore an oncoming train, even if the train seems far enough away. Trains are always given the right of way legally. Why? For the simple reason that they are unable to pull out of the way. They can’t swerve or change directions. In addition, a train traveling at 55 miles per hour will require a full mile to stop, even if the emergency brakes are used immediately. A mile is the equivalent of 18 or more football fields.

Dr. Mark Rosekind, the NHTSA Administrator, noted that the campaign conveys a message that “your life is worth more than a few saved minutes, and trying to outrun a train isn’t worth the risk. When a train is coming, the only choice is to stop. Trains can’t.”

New York among states targeted

“Stop! Trains Can’t” will focus on 18- to 49-year-old men in the states with the 15 most dangerous railroad crossings and the states where 75 percent of crossing accidents happened in 2015. New York and New Jersey are both included.

The others are: California, Illinois, Texas, Louisiana, Indiana, Ohio, Florida, Georgia, Missouri, North Carolina, South Carolina, Kentucky, Alabama, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Mississippi, Arkansas and Arizona.

When you need a train accident attorney

Edelman, Krasin & Jaye are established Long Island train accident lawyers. We have convenient office locations in Long Island and the Bronx.

If you or a loved one has been injured in an accident, you need experienced lawyers fighting for your rights. Edelman, Krasin & Jaye will negotiate for fair and full compensation in all types of accident cases.

Our law firm will be happy to discuss your case during a private consultation. Call today for a free evaluation with an experienced New York City and Long Island injury lawyer today.

Additional railroad crossing crash resources

  1. “DOT Launches New Railroad Crossing Safety Ad Campaign.” National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. January 13, 2017. https://www.nhtsa.gov/press-releases/dot-launches-new-railroad-crossing-safety-ad-campaign
  2. “Stop! Trains Can’t.” U.S. Department of Transportation, https://www.transportation.gov/stop-trains-cant

Bill Targets Nursing Home Abuse with In-Room Cameras

A proposed bill would allow video cameras to be installed in assisted living facilities, in an attempt to deter elder abuse and neglect.

Under the proposal, backed by Missouri Rep. Andrew McDaniel, families would have the option to voluntarily install video cameras in their loved one’s rooms at their own expense. The security cameras would allow them to more actively monitor their relatives, and access live feeds remotely.

Missouri nursing homes have raised concerns that the bill would violate patients’ privacy, and their lobbyists have stopped similar legislation from being passed over the past few years. However, House Bill 398 affords concessions for patient privacy, allowing the cameras to be turned off when the nursing home resident is getting dressed or taking a bath.

House Bill 398 created to deter neglect and abuse

Representative McDaniel says he penned House Bill 398 in response to an alarming number of reports involving nursing home neglect, abuse and sexual exploitation in facilities across the state. McDaniel told a CBS St. Louis news affiliate he received stories of families who found their loved ones covered in bedsores, after being left to lie in their own waste for days.

Proponents of HB 398 argue that the legislation would help ensure the quality treatment of nursing home residents in Missouri facilities, and allow families to monitor medication administration and day-to-day care, in addition to watching out for incidences of neglect or abuse.

Under House Bill 398, nursing home facilities would be barred from accessing video camera recordings without written consent, and anyone caught tampering with or destroying a camera or recorded footage would face criminal charges.

At present HB 398 is pending without a scheduled hearing date in the Missouri House of Representatives. If HB 398 is passed and approved by the Governor, it could go into effect as early as August 2017.

Elder abuse attorneys serving New York

The nursing home abuse lawyers at Edelman, Krasin & Jaye handle all types of elder neglect claims on Long Island and the greater NYC metropolitan area. If you suspect elder abuse or mistreatment, you are encouraged to alert authorities immediately and contact us for a free consultation.

Our legal team offers compassionate yet aggressive representation for nursing home abuse victims who suffer at the hands of those who are charged with their care. If investigations or video recordings show evidence of neglect or abuse, victims have the right to file suit and demand just compensation.

If you suspect your elder loved one has suffered physical or emotional assault, sexual abuse, or some other type of neglect resulting in bed sores, malnutrition or dehydration, we are here to answer your questions.

Call to schedule a confidential case evaluation today.

Additional nursing home abuse resources

  1. ABC News KSPR, Proposal calls for cameras in nursing home patients rooms http://www.kspr.com/content/news/Proposal-calls-for-cameras-in-nursing-home-patients-rooms-412303293.html
  2. McKnight’s Senior Living, Missouri says ‘Show Me’ again with camera bills http://www.mcknightsseniorliving.com/news/missouri-says-show-me-again-with-camera-bills/article/635124/

Bill Jaye Discusses Alleged Tax Rebate Scam on CBS News

JusticeThe Edelman, Krasin & Jaye Law Firm has received a number of inquiries from people looking to recover their hard-earned money after news reports of an alleged tax rebate scam made news headlines.

So-called advisor misrepresented himself, say homeowners

Arie Gal of East Meadow sent out applications to first-time Nassau County homeowners to apply for the New York State STAR tax rebate program. Many homeowners thought they were dealing directly with someone employed by the state – until a fishy invoice arrived from “STAR Exemption Advisor.”

Anyone who signed the paperwork and sent it back without reading the fine print inadvertently appointed Gal as their “advisor”, entitled to the first year rebate as payment for services. This amount could range from $640 to nearly $4,000, depending on the age and income of the applicants.

“I can’t believe this is happening to us,” one homeowner who lost $1,180 to Star Exemption Advisor told CBS News. The application looked like an official piece of paperwork from the county. Otherwise, she would never have signed it. “I didn’t need him to put a stamp on paperwork. I don’t need anyone’s help on that,” she told reporters. “We had just bought a house, we put our entire life saving into and here this guy is taking $1,000 from us that we desperately need to survive the next month,” she added.

“He just takes advantage of people,” attorney Bill Jaye, of the Edelman, Krasin & Jaye Law Firm, told CBS News in an interview. “I’m not going to say it’s illegal what he’s doing, but it’s unfair,” he added.

There are people who act as STAR advisors and typically charge $25 or so for helping homeowners file their paperwork.

NY Attorney General pursues STAR rebate class action lawsuit

So far at least 20 people have formally complained to the Better Business Bureau, but New York Attorney General Eric T. Schneiderman says Gal has scammed thousands of new homeowners out of at least $1.5 million. He announced a class action lawsuit against STAR Exemption Advisor and Arie Gal on January 26, 2017. The case will be heard on February 10.

Edelman, Krasin, and Jaye has received dozens of calls from homeowners looking for legal recourse to get their money back – only to find that no laws have been broken. The application contains a disclaimer stating that the form is “not official.” Furthermore, the fine print explicitly states that homeowners are appointing Arie Gal as their STAR advisor, and that upon the application approval, he is entitled to the first rebate check as payment for services rendered.

In the case of Gal v. Delgiorno, the judge dismissed the homeowner’s claim, stating that: “The uncontested evidence showed that the parties had entered into a contract pursuant to which plaintiff was to provide defendant with an application form for a STAR school tax exemption… the defendant’s obligation to pay plaintiff was contingent upon the application being granted… in such instance, plaintiff’s fee was to equal defendant’s STAR tax exemption savings for the first year of her tax exemption.” The plaintiff has appealed the January 8 decision.

How to apply for a STAR tax rebate in New York State

In the past, homeowners who wished to participate in the STAR tax rebate program needed to fill out a form and send it in to their county assessors office. Today, it’s easier than ever, with an electronic submission form available on the Nassau County government website. Homeowners needn’t pay a fee. Most homeowners are required to include copies of their deed or Certificate of Shares (for apartment owners) and proof of residence (voter ID registration, car registration, NYS income tax return, driver’s license, or state ID card). Additional forms are requested if the property has been placed in a trust, the homeowner is deceased, or if the property is considered a life estate – but it’s by no means complicated.

  1. CBS Local - Company Scammed Long Island Homeowners Out Of Tax Rebates; AG Schneiderman Says http://newyork.cbslocal.com/2017/01/26/nassau-county-star-rebate-scam/
  2. Nassau County - STAR Rebate Amounts https://www.tax.ny.gov/pit/property/star/sd28.htm
  3. Justia – Gal v. Delgiorno http://law.justia.com/cases/new-york/appellate-term-second-department/2016/2016-ny-slip-op-50046-u.html

Wrongful Death Alleged in Urinary Tract Infection Case

medical malpractice lawA wrongful death suit has been filed against a New Hampshire hospital, claiming that a woman died after antibiotics were not prescribed for a severe urinary tract infection.

Fever worsened to septic shock

The woman, 67-year-old Jacklyn Chamberlin of New Hampshire, went to the emergency department at Exeter Hospital on October 24, 2016, complaining of fever and related symptoms. She received an ultrasound that indicated an ureteral obstructing stone. Bacteria was also found in her urinalysis.

Despite this, however, the urologist who treated her did not recommend or prescribe antibiotics. The suit claims that a good standard of care would have included a regimen of antibiotics. He diagnosed a renal stone. Mrs. Chamberlin was given medication only for pain and discharged.

Two days later, Mrs. Chamberlin visited the emergency department again, with septic shock. She was admitted to an operating room. The intensive care unit treated her aggressively. However, she died the next day.

Her husband is the plaintiff in a wrongful death suit, which alleges that antibiotic treatment would have prevented her infection from progressing and thus prevented the septic shock. Her infection would not have become fatal.

Doctor negligence alleged

The plaintiff’s suit was filed against Dr. Craig Maclean of U.S. Acute Care Solutions and Dr. Steven Kahan of Core Physicians LLC. It claims that the physicians and these companies are “vicariously liable” for “the negligent, careless and unlawful acts and failure to act in breach of the standard of care.”

Damages are sought to compensate her family for injuries and losses related to Mrs. Chamberlin’s death.

Wrongful death in New York State

Wrongful death is usually alleged when a person could have brought suit for damages or negligent conduct had he or she lived. In New York state specifically, wrongful death requires a death that stems from the defendant’s wrongful conduct. The conduct or ensuing course of action would have qualified for legal action in court were the person alive.

State law also requires that one or more people be alive who were caused a loss by the death, and that damages be recoverable from an entity against whom suit can be brought.

The statute of limitations for a wrongful death claim in New York is two years from the date of death.

If you or a loved one has suffered medical harm

If you or a loved one in Long Island or New York City believe they have suffered unnecessary harm because of misdiagnosis or other hospital malpractice, contact us to discuss possible legal options. New York state law contains provisions for damages to cover medical care, lost wages and benefits, support and services, and additional damages in case of wrongful death.

Edelman, Krasin & Jaye are leading medical malpractice lawyers on Long Island. We will fight for those harmed at the hands of negligent healthcare professionals.

We pursue all forms of medical malpractice including:

  • Doctor negligence
  • Hospital negligence
  • Surgical errors
  • Misdiagnosis
  • Pharmacy errors

Call Edelman, Krasin & Jaye today for a confidential consultation at no charge to you.

DUIs Down, Numbers Still Troubling

auto accidents - drunk driver 3While DUIs have been on a steady decline in the U.S. for more than a decade, the number of drivers operating motor vehicles under the influence is still troubling. More than 27 million drivers got behind the wheel after drinking in 2014, according to new numbers from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMSHA). With progress made in recent years, these statistics also show there is still much to be done to curb drunk driving and the devastating consequences that are often the result.

The decline of DUIs

The recent statistics show that DUIs have been on a steady decline between 2002 and 2014. In 2002, 15.3 percent of all drivers on the roads drove under the influence of alcohol. By 2014, that number had dropped to 11.1 percent. The sharpest declines were seen in drivers between the ages of 21 and 25, where driving under the influence dropped from 29.9 percent to 18.9 percent from 2002 to 2014.

The data was collected from the National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH), which received the information by interviewing drivers about their alcohol and drug use before driving. The report broke down statistics by age group and gender to identify the groups still most at risk for DUI. The research found that males were more likely to drive under the influence in every age bracket.

DUI problem remains

Strides have been made in lowering the number of drunk drivers on the nation’s roadways, but the number of DUIs is still much too high for anyone to rest comfortably with that progress. In 2014 alone, 27.7 million drivers admitted to getting behind the wheel when they were under the influence of alcohol. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) estimates that nearly one-third of all traffic fatalities involve either a driver or pedestrian that is intoxicated.

Nearly two in three people will be involved in a drunk driving crash in their lifetime, according to NHTSA. MADD states that while more than 300,000 people may drive drunk each day in this country, but only about 3,200 are arrested for DUI. Many drunk drivers go undetected on the roadways until a tragedy occurs.

“Although it is heartening to see a downward trend in levels of driving under the influence of alcohol, it still kills thousands of people each year and shatters the lives of friends and family left behind,” Frances Harding, director of SAMSHA’s Center for Substance Abuse Prevention, stated on the administration’s website. “We must strive to save lives by reducing this public health threat through education, prevention and all other possible measures.”

The personal injury lawyers at Edelman, Krasin & Jaye have seen firsthand the devastating effect drunk driving can have on family and friends. Picking up the pieces after one of these tragedies can seem nearly impossible for those that are left behind. Legal support is often needed to ensure rights are protected and victims of these accidents receive all of the compensation they are entitled to.

If you or someone you love is the victim of a drunk driving accident, our team can help. Contact the law offices of Edelman, Krasin & Jaye today to receive a free case evaluation and answers to all your legal questions.

  1. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, The Rate of Driving Under the Influence of Alcohol has Steadily Declined from 2002-2014, https://www.samhsa.gov/newsroom/press-announcements/201612271200
  2. UPI, U.S. DUI Rates on the Decline, http://www.upi.com/Health_News/2016/12/30/US-DUI-rates-on-the-decline/7401483129551/
  3. AAP News, Report: DUI Rates Drop for those Ages 16-25 Years, http://www.aappublications.org/news/2016/01/06/DUI010616
  4. MADD, Statistics, http://www.madd.org/statistics/
  5. National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependency, Driving While Impaired: Alcohol and Drugs, https://www.ncadd.org/about-addiction/driving-while-impaired-alcohol-and-drugs

NHTSA Issues Call for Vehicle to Vehicle Communication to Increase Safety

183568617More than 35,000 people were killed in car accidents across the U.S. in 2015. The car crash–related figures are even more startling for serious injuries requiring medical intervention. In just the first six months of 2015, 2.3 million people received this level of injury from vehicle accidents.

NHTSA calls for mandated communication between cars

A recent proposal by the U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) would mandate installation of vehicle-to-vehicle communication capabilities by car manufacturers. With these capabilities, surrounding cars receive data on a vehicle’s location, direction, speed, and other data. The available data are transmitted to surrounding vehicles approximately 10 times a second.

The NHTSA believes that the ability of cars to communicate, termed vehicle-to-vehicle (V2V) communication, has the potential to make the nation’s roads much safer by either preventing accidents altogether or reducing the severity of each accident.

This may be especially true for accidents caused by distracted drivers and drowsy drivers. Distracted drivers were responsible for 10% of fatalities in 2015. Drowsy drivers caused 72,000 crashes in the 2009-2013 period.

V2V-equipped vehicles can both identify dangers and warn other cars about accidents once they occur. They can identify situations such as passing on a two-lane road in a manner that will prevent head-on crashes. It can issue a warning to drivers when objects or people in the road are several hundred yards distant.

More vehicle technology, more lives saved

V2V is not the only technology expected to save lives in vehicle accidents.

The U.S. Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) is currently developing a plan for vehicle-to-infrastructure (V2I) technology. V2I is analogous to V2V; in V2I the vehicles communicate with infrastructure like stop signs, work zones, and traffic lights.

The NHSTA noted that both V2V and V2I, used in conjunction with additional automated safety features like Automatic Emergency Braking (AEB), could prevent thousands of collisions each year.

If you need to speak to an attorney about an car accident

Edelman, Krasin & Jaye supports all road safety measures. We are pleased to see technology being used to save lives and prevent injuries.

Yet we also believe that even one life lost in a preventable vehicle crash is too many. One visit to the hospital in the aftermath of a vehicle crash is one visit too many.

If you or a loved one have been hurt or lost a life in a vehicle accident, we are here to help. We can answer any questions you have about how liability is determined and what rights you have. We are experienced in New York State insurance regulations.

An experienced car accident attorney will be happy to discuss your case in a complimentary private consultation. Call 1-800-469-7429 for a free consultation with an experienced NYC & Long Island car accident lawyer today.