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Using Your Smartphone to Document the Scene After a Car Accident

Using Your Smartphone to Document the Scene After a Car Accident

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For all the car accidents smartphones cause each year, the devices are actually incredibly useful ­after a crash. Virtually every step you should take after being hit by a negligent driver can be fulfilled or greatly assisted by a smartphone and one of its many applications. Despite its universal usefulness, you would be surprised how many people admit to not even pick up their phones following a crash.

Try to keep these smartphone uses and applications in mind after being in a car accident to improve your claim later on:

  1. Emergency assistance: If anyone is hurt or if the damage to any vehicle is extensive, emergency responders need to be notified and summoned by calling 911. If no one requires immediate medical attention, it is easy for people to skip the phone call and thus forget their phone altogether.
  2. Photographs: What better way to document the scene than to take pictures? Break out the smartphone and start taking photographs from all angles. You need pictures of your car, other cars involved, injuries, and the general environment, including weather conditions.
  3. Notepad: How many times have you heard someone say, “I don’t have a pen or paper”? This used to be a real trouble on a day-to-day basis but it really shouldn’t be anymore, now that just about everyone has a smartphone. No way to write down insurance and identifying information? Incorrect! Just use a notepad application to jot it all down there.
  4. Contact information: Apologizing and taking the blame for an accident is the number one mistake you must avoid after being in an auto accident. Even people who know they aren’t liable may inadvertently accept some accountability by talking too much. Don’t worry about filling the silence with conversation; just pass along your cell number and tell them you will be in contact, later. As in after you talk to your attorney.
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12 New Year’s Resolutions To Keep You Safe On The Road

12 New Year’s Resolutions To Keep You Safe On The Road

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Around this time every year, we think about our New Year’s resolutions and what we’d like to change in the coming year. Most of our routines are made up of sleep, work, and home. However, how do you get from work to home and back again? When you think about it, we spend a lot of time in our cars getting from one place to another. Therefore, it stands to reason that if you’re going to make a New Year’s resolution this year, you might as well incorporate safe driving practices into the mix. After all, driving is probably a part of your daily routine, at least in one capacity or another. We have gathered some ideas that you may want to add to your list of New Year’s resolutions. Keeping these New Year’s resolutions will make you a better driver and keep you safer on the road.

  1. Never Drink and Drive (or drive drowsy) – Also watch out for others who may be driving drunk. “More than 10,000 people die in drunken driving car crashes each year,” according to Consumer Reports.
  2. Do not use your cell phone when driving – If you cannot overcome the urge to use your cell phone, use an app to block it. You can also put your cell phone in the glove compartment or in the backseat out of reach.
  3. Obey the speed limit – Speed is a factor in about one-third of fatal accidents.
  4. Always buckle up – It’s the law in many states and seat belts save over 12,000 lives a year.
  5. Yield to pedestrians – Pedestrians make up about 13 percent of all fatalities. As a driver, you need to be particularly vigilant around crosswalks looking for pedestrians.
  6. Observe bicycle lanes – Remember in California bicyclist “has all the rights” of the driver of a vehicle, and bicyclists are drivers. With these definitions, bicyclists have the same rights to the roadways. Other drivers are to observe the bicyclists’ rights to use the bike lanes.
  7. Watch for motorcyclists – With California’s beautiful weather, it is a paradise for motorcyclists. They are everywhere, and other vehicle drivers are to “Share The Road”.
  8. Signal – Something as simple as using your “blinker” could prevent nearly two million accidents a year.
  9. Protect teen drivers – If you are the parent of a teen driver, make sure he/she follows all the graduated licensing rules.
  10. Maintain your vehicle and tires – Performing regular tire checks and routine maintenance will help insure your vehicle will stay at optimal condition.
  11. Stop on red – Seems obvious, but red-light running kills hundreds and injures tens of thousands of people annually, most of the, occupants in other vehicles. Rolling stops don’t count.
  12. Check the weather – If you must go out in bad weather, be prepared for the challenges.

If you or a loved one are involved in a vehicle accident, please contact us at McElfish Law Firm (310) 659-4900.

Disclaimer: The information in this blog post is provided for general informational purposes only, and may not reflect the current law in your jurisdiction. No information contained in this post should be construed as legal advice from McElfish Law Firm or the individual author, nor is it intended to be a substitute for legal counsel on any subject matter. No reader of this post should act or refrain from acting on the basis of any information included in, or accessible through, this post without seeking the appropriate legal or other professional advice on the particular facts and circumstances at issue from a lawyer licensed in the recipient’s state, country or other appropriate licensing jurisdiction.





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Parking Lot Accidents and Injuries in Los Angeles

Parking Lot Accidents and Injuries in Los Angeles

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While car crashes and collisions often occur on major highways or at traffic intersections, they can also happen in your local grocery store parking lot or at your mall. Parking lot accidents and injuries may seem minor, but they can result in serious harm, particularly when they involve pedestrians or escalate into physical altercations. As we head into the holiday season, with busy shoppers vying for a limited number of spaces, it is important to be aware of the dangers that exist. You’ll also want to know what you can do to protect yourself in the event that this type of accident occurs.

 Types of Car Park Accidents and Injuries

According to the crash statistics from Ameriprise, a home and auto insurer, there are four basic types of parking lot accidents. These involve:

•Two or more drivers who back out of their spaces at the same time

•Multiple drivers vying for the same space

•Accidents in which a driver either pulls forward or backs out of a space, colliding with oncoming traffic or pedestrians

•Collisions in which driver’s hit pedestrians at crossings or stop signs

These accidents may seem minor, but the injuries that result can be severe. Studies conducted by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) indicate more than 90,000 people are injured each year in non-traffic related accidents. These parking lot accidents can result in concussions, whiplash, broken bones, or soft tissue injuries for drivers. Pedestrians who are struck face the potential for severe injuries as well that could be disabling and even life threatening. Unfortunately, in addition to the injuries that drivers and passengers face, there is also the danger that verbal disagreement between drivers in these situations will lead to physical altercations and even assaults.


What to Do If You Are Involved In a Parking Lot Accident

Unfortunately, the winter season is a prime time for parking lot accidents to occur, as crowds of shoppers rush to attend to gift buying and holiday preparations. The day after Thanksgiving, known as Black Friday, is one of the most potentially dangerous for shoppers. In light of these facts, it is important to allow yourself plenty of time and use extra care when pulling in and out of a space and navigating parking lots. If you are involved in a collision, take the following steps:

•Stay calm, and notify store security or your local law enforcement

•Exchange contact, vehicle, and insurance information with other drivers involved

•Report your injuries to your doctor and get medical care as soon as possible, even if no immediate symptoms appear

•Take photos of the damage, and look for witnesses at the scene


Get Help from a Los Angeles Car Accident Attorney

 If you or someone you care is involved in a parking lot accident, contact McElfish Law Firm right away. Our experienced Los Angeles car accident attorneys understand the potentially serious injuries that can occur in these accidents. We can assist you in getting the compensation you deserve for injuries and property damages.


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