With the growing talk of self-driving autonomous vehicles, Fort Lauderdale car accident attorney Joseph Lipsky has wondered about the efforts of the companies hoping to sell driverless cares to protect other drivers and pedestrians. Apparently one of those companies, Google, has also been thinking about how to prevent pedestrian car accident personal injuries. Recently, Google received a patent for what can only be described as human fly paper.

Google’s invention is essentially a strong adhesive type tape which will be placed on the front/hood of their vehicles. In the event of a car vs. pedestrian accident, the tape would “hold” the pedestrian onto the hood of the vehicle, preventing them from falling to the roadway.  As many of the injuries pedestrians suffer after being hit by a car happen when that person is thrown onto the road after being hit by a car, the thought is the tape will help stop the so-called secondary impact.

The inventors envision the tape being covered by some type of shell which will break open upon impact with a pedestrian, but will keep the tape protected from road debris such as dirt and bugs.

With the increasing demand to legalize marijuana in Florida, Fort Lauderdale Car Accident Attorney Joseph Lipsky wants proponents of legalization to realize that driving under the influence of marijuana has resulted in a dramatic increase in wrongful death car accidents in other states which have already legalized pot. While the deadly effects of a stoned driver are well known, unlike with drunk driving prevention, the issue confronting law enforcement is how to determine when a marijuana user is too stoned to drive.

Unlike alcohol use, which in Florida subjects a driver to criminal charges if he/she has a blood alcohol level of .08, marijuana uses has no such comparable test. As of yet, there is no test to determine when a pot smokes is too high to driver, although we would argue that no amount of marijuana use is safe, if the smoker is going to be driving. Considering THC affects different users differently,  as of now there is no way to determine if a particular “level” of THC in the blood stream equates to being too stoned to drive safely.

Not surprisingly, legal marijuana supporters like to point to a Department of Transportation study which determined that drunk drivers present a greater danger than stoned drivers. This position deflects from the point, which is that both drunk and stoned drivers are a danger to other motorists and pedestrians. Considering the difficulties associated with testing for THC, which requires a blood test, rather than a breath test as is available for suspected drunk drivers; determining the amount of THC in a person’s blood, so that they may be arrested for being impaired, is not accurate.  Law enforcement advocates recommend using a “road-side” test, similar to suspected drunk drivers, to try to ascertain the level at which a person is functioning while behind the wheel.

Miami Motorcycle Accident Attorney Joseph Lipsky reminds his fellow motorists that May is Motorcycle Awareness Month. The purpose of this designation is to remind all drivers that motorcycle riders have all the same rights as any other driver on the road. Having represented too many families who have lost loved ones in wrongful death accidents involving a motorcycle versus car or truck, we know too well what can happen when car and truck drivers don’t “share the road” with motorcyclists.

With the start of summer, which brings more riders out to enjoy the longer days, Fort Lauderdale personal injury attorney Joseph Lipsky, along with the American Motorcyclist Association, is making a profound plea to all drivers to be particularly conscience of motorcycle riders, by being sure to check your side and rear view mirrors and blind spots before changing lanes. While we hope this behavior is part of all drivers’ operation of their vehicles; too often in South Florida, motorists abruptly change lanes without any warning, putting other motorists, especially motorcycle riders, in danger. Incredibly, despite the continuous public relations campaigns, too many motorists continue to use their phones while they drive. Distracted driving is one of the most likely cited reasons why motorists fail to see motorcycle riders.

Many motorcycle riders understand the dangers associated with climbing on their bike, but to put those dangers into perspective, more than 4,000 riders lost their lives in motorcycle crashes last year. Not surprisingly, Florida had the third most such deaths. Those wrongful deaths accounted for almost 15 percent of all roadway traffic deaths. Of those killed, over ninety percent were men. Incredibly, alcohol use was involved in nearly 40% of all motorcycle crashes with a death. In addition to the fatalities, almost 10,000 riders and their passengers were injured in motorcycle crashes. Sadly, while vehicle related traffic deaths have steadily decreased, motorcycle fatalities have risen steadily over the past decade; and with over 600,000 registered motorcycles in Florida, it appears those number won’t be dropping soon.

As we rapidly approach the end of the school year, and the impending 4th of July Holiday, Fort Lauderdale Personal Injury Attorney Joseph Lipsky reminds his fellow Floridians, particularly parents, of the dramatic rise in the number of children who have suffered personal injuries, including burns and amputations, due to fireworks being misused.  Last year alone there were over 11,000 people who suffered fireworks related injuries, and sadly, 10 wrongful deaths.

A recent study by the Pediatric Academic Society found that the number of children who have received care at hospital emergency rooms due to fireworks related injuries increased by almost fifty percent of the past three years. Almost half of fireworks related emergency room visits were by children under the age of 15, with nearly a third of those youngsters being bystanders, who thought they were safe.

The researchers believe that the lack of regulations over the sale of fireworks, particularly those which most people believe are illegal in Florida, is a direct cause of the increase in firework related personal injuries. Until such time as cities, counties and the State enact appropriate regulations to protect unknowing consumers, personal injury attorney Joseph Lipsky reminds parents to take the following precautions:

As a parent of young children, Miami Personal Injury Attorney Joseph Lipsky knows too well that for too many children, play time on school and park playgrounds don’t always end with smiling faces. Unfortunately, personal injuries, mainly head injuries, from playground falls are rapidly increasing across the United States.

While many schools and parks have taken necessary steps to reduce so-called accidental traumatic head injuries, over the past decade, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control, the number of children under the age of 14 who have been seen at hospital ERs due to acute head injuries has risen to over twenty thousand annually. Generally parents focus on the number of head injuries associated with sports, such as football, but head injuries, including concussions, caused by falls on playgrounds are a growing epidemic which needs to be better addressed. The number of head injury visits to emergency rooms rose by almost fifty percent over the past 3 years. Boys made up nearly sixty percent of those emergency room visits. Nearly one half of the children seen at ERs were between five and nine years old.

Although some of the increase in head injury emergency room care may be attributed to parents becoming more aware of the dangers presented by head trauma, given the increased publicity about professional football plays; there can be no doubt that falls from monkey bars and swings play an increasing role in playground concussions. Not surprisingly, almost sixty percent of all children and adolescent head injuries happen on school playgrounds. Parents need to remain vigilant of the symptoms of brain injury children may display after suffering head trauma.

Fort Lauderdale car accident attorney Joseph Lipsky reminds drivers to be careful in only relying upon a new car’s “accident avoidance” technology, rather than truly paying attention to your surroundings. According to a recent study from AAA, those backing up systems and cross traffic alerts are not as reliable as most drivers believe. The study’s lesson, drivers should use their experience and behind the wheel skills rather than just relying upon technology to save themselves from being involved in a car accident.

While a car’s warning systems are supposed to alert drivers about possible hazards, tests results reveal that every vehicle’s accident prevention systems vary greatly. Incredibly, tests demonstrated that when a car with rear warning systems was parked in between two other vehicles, it failed to warn the driver of passing motorcycles, bicycles, smaller cars and pedestrians about 50% of the time. Sadly, most drivers are unaware of this significant likelihood of failure, as they are lead to believe, mainly by mainstream advertising, that the car’s systems are truly reliable. Regardless of the manufacturer, and the added costs of such warning systems, which averages around $3,000.00, tests proved that no on vehicle was 100% reliable in detecting all hazards behind a vehicle.

We agree with the AAA that all motorists, regardless of which safety features their vehicle has, should always look behind and to the sides of their car and check the rear and side-view mirrors before backing up. Backing into a parking space will can assist drivers in eventually preventing accident, unfortunately, most parking lots require vehicle “head in” parking. This is precisely one of the reasons why the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, is requiring all new vehicles, by the model year 2018, to have mandatory backup cameras. The government hope is that requiring such cameras will help avoid wrongful deaths and personal injuries. According to the NHTSA, backing up accidents cause more than 250 deaths and over 15,000 personal injuries each year.

A recent report by the Governors Highway Safety Association (GHSA) confirms what Fort Lauderdale car accident attorney Joseph Lipsky unfortunately knows too well, that the number of pedestrian wrongful deaths increased by 19 percent from 2009 to 2014. Sadly, pedestrian deaths are now at their largest proportion as compared to all car accident fatalities over the past 25 years.

The study estimates that there is a 10% increase in the number of pedestrians wrongful deaths in 2015, in comparison to 2014. Pedestrian wrongful deaths have risen at a steady rate of thirteen percent annually since 2005. Incredibly, Florida is one of four states which account for over forty percent of all pedestrian vs motor vehicle deaths, the other states are California, Texas and New York.

The number of pedestrian fatalities continues to rise despite the ongoing efforts of states to use technological innovations, increased law enforcement and more pedestrian education. Of course, a decrease in cell phone use by pedestrians would certainly help decrease such deaths.

Fort Lauderdale Personal Injury Attorney Joseph Lipsky frequently represents injured victims of car accidents caused by drivers who are distracted due to texting while driving. Lately, he has seen a drastic rise in the number of distracted walking accidents. That’s right, distracted walking, when a pedestrian is so engrossed in using their phone that they disregard the dangers around themselves, and actually fall or walk in front of a car.

Mr. Lipsky’s experience is apparently not a fluke. According to a recent report in the Wall Street Journal, texting while walking is now one of the most often cited reasons for an injured person who is seen at an emergency room. The National Safety Council’s own research indicates that when someone is injured while texting or reading on their phone, those injuries are substantial, and include fractures, concussions and dislocations.

Texting while walking results in what scientists refer to as inattentive blindness. This lack of awareness to a pedestrian’s surroundings resulted in over 2500 emergency room visits. In fact, the study’s research demonstrates that cell phone use while walking results in more than ten percent of all pedestrian related injuries.

Although Miami car accident lawyer Joseph Lipsky applauds the increase in accident prevention technology being included by vehicle manufacturers in their new cars, the technology divide of older drivers is causing many to disregard and ignore possible life saving safety equipment. According to the National Safety Council, this failure to use car accident avoidance technology is an unexpected consequence of rapid technological advancements.

Vehicle manufactures thankfully are readily installing unintended lane change technology, blind spot avoidance and automatic rear-end collision braking; but, they are failing to educate consumers about how to use such technology to avoid deadly car accidents. In light of these shortcomings, and because each manufacturer uses different technology, the Department of Transportation started a website, mycardoeswhat.org, as a resource for consumers to visit for detailed and simplistic information about every vehicles safety features. The website includes multiple video demonstrations to help reduce the learning curve.

The safety feature most motorists have difficulty with is adaptive cruise control, even though it has existed for over 10 years in more expensive luxury vehicles. Given the high costs of those vehicles, dealers were apt to spend an extended amount of time helping their customers fully understand their vehicles. However, as the safety equipment begins to find its way into less expensive cars, experts question whether those dealers will be able to devote the time amount of time to teach their customers. And, as anyone who has tried to read a new car manual can attest, what was once a small booklet has grown into a full sized encyclopedia.

With the growing number of people who are turning to cycling for commuting to work and for recreation and exercise, Fort Lauderdale personal injury lawyer Joseph Lipsky expected that the number of bicycle accident and injuries would also increase. Now, a new study by The Journal of the American Medical Association, based upon the National Electronic Injury Surveillance System, which evaluates data from emergency rooms across the United States, confirms that the number of bicycle riding related accidents and injures increased over the last seven years.

Of particular concern is the great number of injuries involving bike users over the age of forty-five. Those riders saw an almost 100 percent increase in their number of injuries requiring a visit to an emergency room. The number of injured riders outpaced the increase in total bicycle use, which rose just over 20 percent since 2001. Sadly, more than 700 people lose their lives in bike accidents annually across America.

As expected, the leading causes of bike accidents and personal injuries were collisions with cars, falling down and riding on roads which were not in good condition. Having represented dozens of bicyclists injured due to potholes and misaligned roads, Florida personal injury attorney Joseph Lipsky, knows too well the dangers caused by communities and cities not properly maintaining the roads they know cyclists use.