North Carolina and South Carolina Personal Injury Lawyer Blog

Traumatic brain injuries (TBIs), concussions and other head injuries can have devastating long-term consequences. All employers must take proper precautions in order to protect workers from suffering a TBI. Construction workers, in particular, are at high risk.

Unfortunately, far too many construction companies are still falling short of their legal duty to protect the safety of their workers. If you have suffered a construction TBI in Western North Carolina or Upstate South Carolina, please contact an experienced workers’ compensation attorney at Grimes Teich Anderson LLP today to discuss your legal options.

Traumatic Brain Injuries on Construction Sites

TBIs on construction sites are a major problem. Recently, researchers from the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) released a report exploring the frequency of traumatic brain injuries in the construction field. The study was included in the March 2016 edition of the American Journal of Industrial Medicine.

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When children are out of school for the summer and look to have fun in pools and on trampolines, they see fun, not danger. Many parents, too, don’t realize the hidden dangers that trampolines and pools present to children.

However, the statistics do not lie. A study conducted by the Indiana University School of Medicine found that approximately 289,000 children suffered bone fractures as a result of accidents on trampolines between 2002 and 2011, according to USA Today. A similar study published in the Journal of Pediatric Orthopaedics found that trampoline accidents resulted in 1 million emergency room visits during the same period.

Pools are not any safer. An average of 10 people per day died in unintentional, non-boating-related drownings between 2005 and 2014, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Approximately 50 percent of these victims were children under the age of 14.

Who Is Responsible for Swimming Pool and Trampoline Accidents?

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With all the high-tech safety equipment on new cars today, it’s surprising that one of the oldest and most basic safety features could fall short of the mark on many vehicles – yet that’s exactly what a new report has found. A study conducted by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) concluded that “new ratings show most headlights need improvement.”

Few would argue that headlights are not one of the most essential safety features of a car. As such, headlights that fail to illuminate the road properly should be of significant concern to drivers.

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There are ways to test for alcohol-impaired driving, but it is much more difficult to determine whether a driver has broken the law by texting behind the wheel. That may change soon.

Breathalyzers are used by police officers when alcohol impairment is suspected, either when a driver is operating their vehicle erratically, or at the scene of an accident, for example. The use of breathalyzers is widely accepted and allows police officers to crack down on drinking and driving – a deadly behavior.

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Self-driving cars are coming, and in the future, they may be a common way for people to get to and from where they need to go. But a new study reveals that most people are scared to ride in autonomous vehicles.

However, the dangers of being on the road may be the same, regardless of whether you are the one driving, or the computer is in charge.  Negligent drivers are all around us, and cause thousands of car accidents per year.  Citing safety concerns, the Association of Global Automakers recently urged the National Transportation Safety Administration to “slow down” its production of guidelines for the vehicles.

Drivers Trust Their Own Skills – But Should They?

According to a recent study conducted by AAA, and summarized in an article published on AutoBlog.com, three out of every four Americans are fearful about riding in self-driving automobiles. The report found that 84 percent of drivers said that they trusted their own driving skills more than those of a car computer.

Up until late February 2016, all of the accidents in which a self-driving car had been involved had been caused by another driver, not by the self-driving car. That changed when a Google vehicle recently collided with a bus in Mountain View, Calif. The accident happened when the self-driving car traveled into the center lane to make a right turn around some sandbags, wrongfully assuming that the approaching bus would slow and let the car pass.

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Even if you do not know much about the Social Security disability benefits program, you probably know this: getting a claim approved can take a long time – even more than a year in some cases.

However, the Social Security Administration realizes that in some cases, an applicant’s medical condition is so severe that the standard claim-processing time is unacceptable. The applicant is obviously disabled and is in need of benefits. To meet this need, the Social Security Administration has implemented the Compassionate Allowances Initiative.

What Is the Compassionate Allowance Initiative?

The Compassionate Allowance (CAL) Initiative was designed to help those with serious and readily diagnosable medical conditions avoid the lengthy and tedious disability benefits application process. Rather than multiple months’ wait, an application may be processed in as little as a few weeks. It is important to note that a person who has a CAL condition will not receive more money than will a person with a non-CAL disability. Instead, their application will simply be processed more quickly.

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If you drive to work every day or regularly transport your children to school and extracurricular activities in Western North Carolina or Upstate South Carolina, you have noticed that gas prices have dropped significantly. This undoubtedly has had a positive effect on your bank account.

But are low gas prices a good thing when it comes to car accidents? According to a recent article in the Huffington Post, lower gas prices can result in more auto accident-related deaths.

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Although self-driving cars could someday reduce injuries from car accidents and ease traffic jams, recent reports show that the technology still has a long way to go, and error-prone humans are still needed to take over in situations that the computer can’t handle.

Google, one of the leaders in the autonomous vehicle field, recently revealed that its self-driving prototypes experienced 272 failures with their autonomous technology that required human drivers to take the wheel between September 2014 and November 2015, according to an article on AutoBlog. There were an additional 69 instances in which the driver felt the need to take control, Google reported. Continue Reading

Companies in the North Carolina are facing stiff penalties if they fail to purchase required workers’ compensation insurance to pay for their employees’ workplace injuries and occupational illnesses, according to a recent report by the Raleigh News & Observer.

In the past year, more than 100 employers across the state have been charged with crimes for failing to carry the legally required workers’ compensation insurance, and more than $1 million in fines have been levied against uninsured employers, according to the article. Continue Reading

It is the holiday season, and many people in Western North Carolina and Upstate South Carolina may forego driving themselves from party to party and gathering to gathering and instead leave the driving to someone else. Uber – a popular ridesharing service – and traditional taxi services are alternatives for those who do not wish to get behind the wheel themselves.

But being a passenger in a taxi or riding with another driver using Uber is no protection against car accidents. Accidents involving Uber vehicles and taxi accidents happen in both North Carolina and South Carolina. Injured passengers of both taxis and ridesharing vehicles often have the same question following a taxi accident or Uber accident: “Who pays”?

Who Pays If I Get Hurt While Riding in an Uber or Other Ridesharing Vehicle?

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