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Abbotsford Personal Injury Law Blog

How can winter tires help to avoid car accidents?

When it comes to driving in winter, tires are one of the most important things to consider. British Columbia drivers should consider the state of their tires and whether they need to invest in winter tires for the colder months. Once temperatures drop below 7 degrees Celsius, winter tires can help drivers avoid car accidents and handle stormy or slippery weather. In some parts of the province, these tires are required by law.

British Columbia has winter tire and chain-up rules that require winter tires to be used in certain areas during cold weather. Under these laws, tires with either an M+S symbol (mud and snow) or the three-peaked mountain and snowflake symbol are acceptable. Both of these symbols signify that the tires are optimized for winter with at least a 3.5 mm tread. For even more protection against car accidents, drivers can purchase true winter tires, which sport the mountain and snowflake symbol.

Halloween car accidents remind locals of driver safety

It is important for drivers to watch for children and drive carefully in school zones or residential areas. But on occasions such as Halloween, these warnings are especially important to heed. The increase of car accidents in British Columbia on Halloween is an example of how weather and sunlight can contribute to the risk of an accident, as well as how children are particularly susceptible to being hit by a driver who may not be paying attention.

Prior to Halloween, the Insurance Corporation of British Columbia warned drivers to stay below speed limits in residential areas between 5 p.m. and 9 p.m. The reason for this warning was that car accidents spike by 25 per cent on Halloween. This spike results in an average 920 crashes that injured 330 people across the province.

Harsher Penalties Might Be Down The Road For Distracted Drivers

Government officials in British Columbia are considering stricter penalties for distracted drivers.

The hope is that implementing harsher penalties will help reduce the amount of car accidents resulting in death or injury by punishing drivers financially for their actions.

The call for harsher penalties comes after news that distracted driving collisions have steadily increased to surpass impaired driving as the leading factor in accidents causing death or bodily harm in Vancouver.

Wet conditions increase risk of pedestrian-related car accidents

Both pedestrians and drivers have concerns when traveling, especially in dark or rainy weather. This is the conclusion of a new survey from the Insurance Corporation of British Columbia (ICBC), which found that nine out of 10 drivers worry about hitting a pedestrian at night. Pedestrians were similarly concerned with the potentiality of car accidents in these circumstances, with eight out of 10 saying they don't feel safe in dark and wet conditions.

The British Columbia government has joined with police to address this issue and offer tips to help drivers and pedestrians avoid car accidents at night. They say that people should be aware of the dangers and conduct themselves accordingly. The ICBC notes that 43 percent of  accidents involving and injuring pedestrians occur during the rainy months between October and January.

Crack down on distracted driving aims to reduce car accidents

The end of September's "Distracted Driving Awareness Month" does not mean a end to enforcement and education on the issue. Part of the campaign from the Insurance Corporation of British Colubmia (ICBC) includes working with local police forces to enforce laws governing the use of cell phones and minimizing other distractions on the road. One such crack down took place on September 28, when West Shore RCMP conducted a distracted driving blitz. Law enforcement hopes that their attention to the issue will reduce car accidents resulting from distracted driving.

The September 28th blitz was a planned collaboration between the Capital Regional District's integrated road safety unit and the West Shore RCMP's traffic unit. Their concerns stem from the current statistics around distracted driving. Numbers show that distractions cause more fatal car accidents than impaired driving in British Columbia, with eight people being killed on average due to the activity on Vancouver Island each year.

Almost 2,000 Distracted Driving Tickets Issued In September

Vancouver police issued almost 2,000 tickets for distracted driving in September. According to CBC.ca, 1,969 tickets were written for drivers who used their cellphones while operating a vehicle.

Police are appealing to family members to help drive the point home that drivers need to put away their phones while driving. This is in addition to a recent campaign launched by the ICBC telling drivers to put down their phones in an effort to reduce the number of car accidents and injuries due to distracted driving.

The Real Heroes Of The Invictus Games

In addition to the athletes, their coaches, their families and supporters, and England’s Prince Harry, there are another set of heroes who helped make the third Invictus Games the success that they were: the safety marshals.

Though not an official term, these safety marshals are the individuals who make sure the equipment used by the athletes are in proper working order. Many of the competing athletes suffer from physical injuries such as spinal cord injuries and orthopedic injuries and require special equipment for mobility. According to a story on CBC.ca, two gentlemen – Dave Caldwell and Gary Sjonnesen – have lent their talents to make sure wheelchair tires are full and firm, straps are secure and every prosthetic is functioning at peak performance.

Protective Athletic Gear Aims To Reduce Brain Injuries

Dr. Joseph Fisher, a professor from University of Toronto, helped conceive new protective athletic gear in an effort to reduce sports related brain injuries. Called a neuroshield collar, Dr. Fisher helped test the safety functions of the product, which restricts movement of the brain after heavy impact contact.

 

Clearing car accidents too quickly could have consequences

When a major collision occurs, the next steps taken can be very important for peoples' safety and any police investigations. Many British Columbia residents hope that car accidents are cleared off the road sooner, particularly in the case of minor collisions. However, there are concerns that wreckage being cleared too quickly can hinder investigations and prevent the proper collection of evidence to document exactly what happened.

In British Columbia, car accidents with over $1,000 in damage require an investigation from police officers. The police produce MV6020 forms from these investigations, which support insurance claims and help hold dangerous drivers accountable. However, these reports are also sent to the Insurance Corporation of British Columbia who then use the data to identify patterns, such as driving behaviours or unsafe intersections.

What happens when you suffer a brain injury in a car accident?

Concussions are among the most common injuries resulting from accidents. Just about anyone in British Columbia is at risk for such a brain injury, in particular victims of car accidents or those who suffer sports injuries. Understanding how a concussion occurs and what its initial warning signs are can help people better manage risks and respond to an incident.

Although concussions can occur in any number of circumstances, they are often discussed in relation to contact sports. For instance, a head-to-head collision between two football players running at top speed has the same impact as someone's head striking a windshield in a 40 km/h car crash. From a physics perspective, these 4,500 joules of energy is the same as being hit by a bowling ball dropped from a 28 story building.

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