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Category Archives: Personal Injury

Delaware Car Accident Lawyers at Rhoades & Morrow Help Pothole Accident Victims.

Can Potholes Cause Car Accidents?

Whenever a roadway has a defect in its surface, it has the potential to cause a driver to lose control of a vehicle. These defects can include potholes – the larger and deeper the pothole, the more likely it is to cause an accident. A pothole could damage a tire, wheel, or suspension parts. A pothole might crumble and cause a chunk of asphalt or concrete to break loose and strike a vehicle. Potholes could cause accidents in many ways, from causing force a driver to swerve to miss them and hit another vehicle to causing a tire blowout and loss of traction.

Forbes recently reported potholes cost about $3 billion in damage every year on U.S. roads. Depending on the situation, the pothole might trigger third-party liability. If that is the case, a skilled car accident lawyer can help you navigate the situation by defending your rights.

Auto Insurance Might Cover Pothole Damage

If you carry collision and comprehensive auto insurance on your vehicle, any damage that a pothole causes should be covered by your auto insurance. You likely would have to pay a deductible, which makes it important to know the cost before you choose to file an auto insurance claim.

If the repairs are about the same or less than your deductible, then you cannot file a claim for damages. When the damages are costly to repair, then it makes more sense to file a claim and recoup at least some of the cost for repairing your vehicle.

You also can consider adding road hazard protection for your tires and wheels. A pothole could damage your tire and cause a blowout, tread separation, or other damage that requires you to replace the tire and maybe the wheel. Road hazard insurance generally applies in such situations.

When Third-Party Liability Might Apply?

Potholes occur on roadways and paved areas. Whoever owns and controls the roadway is responsible for maintaining it to ensure maximum safety – usually a department of public safety or local government unless the pothole is on a privately-owned road or driveway.

When the pothole is on a public road, the governmental body that is in charge of it could be liable for damages or injuries caused by a pothole. If a pothole causes significant damage, you might be able to successfully file claims for damages with the respective governmental body. An experienced Delaware car accident lawyer could help you to identify potentially liable third parties.

Many municipalities and other governmental units hire contractors to maintain roads. When a contractor negligently allows a pothole to form and does nothing to correct it, the contractor could be liable for damages.

When the pothole is in a private roadway, parking lot, or driveway, the owner could be liable for damages or injuries caused by a pothole.

Liability Is Not Automatic

When a pothole forms, it does not immediately place the owners or operators of the roadway or other paved surface in a position of liability for damages. They are allowed time to learn of the issue and correct it in a reasonable manner and amount of time.

Only when the pothole is known does liability become a potential issue. The duty of care requires those who own and control a roadway to keep it in relatively safe condition. If a pothole is reported and nothing is done to correct the problem, then a violation of the duty of care might occur.

When a violation of the duty of care causes harm, such as damaging a vehicle, injuring passengers, or triggering an accident, then liability becomes a more viable concern.

You could show a violation of the duty of care if a pothole has been reported but ignored and resulted in damage to your vehicle and any other harm that might occur.

You could prove those damages with repair bills on your vehicle. If you somehow suffered an injury, your medical bills also could show harm caused by the violation of the duty of care.

Drivers Should Avoid Open and Obvious Potholes

Many potholes are easy to see, which makes them easier to avoid while driving. If a pothole is considered to be “open and obvious,” drivers should be able to see it and avoid it.

An open and obvious pothole might negate any potential third-party liability for any damage that it might cause. Whether or not a pothole is open and obvious certainly could be debated. For example, you might be driving at night and incapable of seeing a pothole due to darkness and shadows created by your headlights. A pothole would not be obvious in such a situation.

If a pothole is marked with an orange cone, spray paint, or another marker, then it should be more open and obvious. Striking a marked pothole likely would not trigger third-party liability because it was open and obvious.

What If a Pothole Causes a Vehicular Collision?

A pothole might cause a driver to slam on the brakes or swerve suddenly. While the driver might be liable for causing an accident, the pothole might be a contributing factor. When a pothole contributes to causing an accident, the entities who control it could be partly liable for causing the accident.

If a pothole contributed to causing you to survive a vehicular accident, an experienced Delaware car accident lawyer could help you to gather supporting evidence and file a strong claim for third-party liability. Any offending driver still would be partly liable for causing the accident, but the pothole could be a contributing factor.

Whenever a pothole causes an accident or damage to your vehicle, you should try to take photos or video of the pothole. That evidence could help to show the size of the pothole and whether or not it was open and obvious. An attorney also could help to check governmental records to see if other motorists have reported the pothole for possible third-party liability.

Delaware Car Accident Lawyers at Rhoades & Morrow Help Pothole Accident Victims

Our skilled Delaware car accident lawyers at Rhoades & Morrow are experienced in personal injury cases of all manners and are ready to help you with your unique situation. Call 302-427-9500 or complete our online form to schedule a free consultation at our Wilmington, Delaware, law office. With offices in all three counties of Delaware, we service clients throughout the state.

Accident Survivors Can Get Help From the Wilmington car accident lawyers at Rhoades & Morrow.

How Much Time Should I Take Off Work After a Car Accident?

Injuries resulting from car accidents can range in severity and require a significant amount of time to heal. If you were injured in a car accident, you may need to take time off of work to recover, though how much time is appropriate may be in question.

One realistic way to gauge how much time you need to take off work is whether or not you have healed up enough to resume working. Your doctor will be able to give you the best estimate of how long you might be off work based on your injuries and will be able to assess you throughout the healing process to let you know when you can safely return to work.

The nature of your job and the types of injuries that you suffered will determine how much time you should take off work after a car accident. Some people can work remotely in a home office and resume work faster than someone who has a very physically involved job.

Ability to Pay Bills Might Be a Factor

You cannot earn money if you are not working, but the bills could pile up. Your ability to pay your bills while you are healing will factor into how long you think you should take off of work.

Fortunately, many people have paid sick leave and vacation time that they can use to offset a loss of income while taking time off of work to heal.

Whether you live alone or have a family, being a primary earner for your household also could make a difference. Your household might have no income because you are not working. You may wish to return to work sooner than your doctor might like, but the debts might make it necessary.

Modified Work Assignments Can Shorten Your Time Away

Another factor to consider is your employer’s willingness to modify your work assignment. If you request temporary work accommodations due to your physical condition, your employer should do so if at all possible.

Your accident injuries make you a disabled worker who is subject to disability protections. Denying a reasonable request for work accommodations so that you can resume work sooner might make your employer liable for disability discrimination.

Your doctor and a car accident attorney could help you to present strong arguments so that your employer will allow you to return to work with modified work assignments. Then you could resume earning income while you still are healing up from the accident.

Delaware Law Lets You Sue for Lost Wages

Delaware is a no-fault state for handling personal injuries that occur during car accidents. State law requires you to purchase personal injury protection (PIP), which automatically pays claims for your injuries regardless of who caused the accident.

When you file for and accept a PIP insurance claim settlement, you forgo the right to sue the other driver for your medical costs. The state’s no-fault law does not stop you from seeking compensation for lost wages, pain and suffering, and other harms caused by a negligent driver.

You could buy lost wages insurance in addition to a PIP plan. The additional coverage would pay up to policy limits for any lost wages that you might incur due to injuries suffered in a vehicular accident.

An experienced car accident lawyer can help you to determine what your legal options are for filing insurance claims and possibly suing an at-fault driver for the various harms that you suffered.

Medical Clearance May Be Required

You might feel well enough to do your job and want to return to work, but that does not mean you will do so immediately: your employer might require you to prove you are in good enough health to work safely again.

Most doctors will provide accident survivors with a note that informs their respective employers of their medical conditions and why they need to time off to heal. Most employers will require you to provide them with a subsequent doctor’s note that affirms you are in good health and it is safe for you to start working again.

The note might suggest you take on alternate light duties or give you full medical clearance to resume all normal work activities. A doctor’s diagnosis that gives you a medical clearance to resume work helps to protect your employer against liability if you aggravate an injury and need additional medical treatment.

Car Accident Injury Might Affect Workers’ Compensation Benefits

When you return to work, you should be aware that your car accident injuries might lead to more injuries. If you suffer an injury while working, your Workers’ Compensation claim might be denied.

The insurer underwriting Workers’ Compensation insurance might declare your injury to be a continuation of the injuries caused by the accident. Saying the injury is accident-related instead of work-related would give the insurer reason to deny your Workers’ Compensation claim.

You could challenge the decision with the help of an attorney and a medical diagnosis from a specialist. You would have to argue that a doctor medically cleared you to work and your employer knew any additional risks when you resumed your job.

Other Ways in Which a Car Accident Lawyer Could Help

A car accident lawyer also can help you to take the necessary time off of work to heal up by keeping debt collectors at bay. The attorney could do that by keeping third parties from contacting you or possibly harassing you over any related bills or insurance claims.

When you retain an attorney due to a car accident, all involved insurers would have to communicate with your attorney. So would any debt collectors if you happen to fall behind on your bills.

Your attorney also can help you to file strong insurance claims and possible legal claims against a driver who might have caused the accident. Other parties also might be liable for your injuries, such as the owner of a trucking company or some other entity that might have created a dangerous condition that caused the accident.

Accident Survivors Can Get Help From the Wilmington Car Accident Lawyers at Rhoades & Morrow

Our experienced Wilmington car accident lawyers at Rhoades & Morrow are ready to defend your rights so you can focus on healing. Call us today at 302-427-9500 or contact us online to schedule a free consultation at our law office in Wilmington, Delaware. With offices in all three counties of Delaware, we serve clients throughout the state.

Concussion After My Car Accident.

Do I Have a Concussion After My Car Accident?

A concussion is traumatic brain injury caused by impact to the head, or forceful shaking of the head and upper body. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, motor vehicle accidents are one of the leading causes of concussions and other traumatic brain injuries (TBIs) in this country.

Unlike lacerations, bruises, and broken bones, concussion and other brain trauma symptoms are not always immediately apparent. That is why it is critical to see a healthcare provider after an auto accident.

What Is a Concussion?

The impact of a car accident—whether it is the vehicle colliding with another object, or the occupant striking something inside the vehicle—can cause the head and upper body to move violently back and forth.

That forceful motion can result in stretching and bruising of the delicate brain tissue. Brain tissue damage leads to chemical changes that alter how the organ functions resulting in a range of concussion symptoms.

Concussion Signs and Symptoms

Symptoms of a concussion are often subtle and may not occur immediately after the initial impact. They also vary in type and severity. The injured person may experience certain symptoms immediately after the event and others in the days and weeks that follow. Concussion symptoms can look different from person to person.

Signs and symptoms of a concussion can include:

  • Headache
  • Confusion
  • Blurry vision
  • Dizziness
  • Slurred speech
  • Drowsiness / fatigue
  • Sleep disturbances
  • Nausea and/or vomiting
  • Sensitivity to noise and/or light
  • Issues with smell and/or taste
  • No memory of the traumatic accident
  • Depression and other mood disorders

To an outsider, someone with a concussion may appear dazed, confused, and forgetful. They may not recall what happened and can ask the same questions repeatedly.

A person who loses consciousness, has bleeding or fluid loss from the nose or ears, severe headache, and significant changes in behavior or mood may have a serious brain injury that requires emergency care. Always seek medical help after any trauma to the head.

Concussion Treatment

Immediately after a concussion, metabolic changes occur that make the brain more susceptible to further brain cell damage from a secondary injury. There is no medication or procedure to heal the brain so that the patient can get right back to their daily activities immediately following a concussion.

Concussion treatment starts with rest for the body and the brain. Individuals who experience a concussion should cut back on their activities, including work, school, and household chores.

Mentally taxing tasks should be avoided, particularly those that require decision-making, quick reaction time, and short-term memory. These include everything from paying bills and playing sports, to looking at screens and cooking a meal.

Depending upon the patient’s symptoms, safe, approved activities are gradually introduced over time. The ability to get proper cognitive and physical rest are two key factors that determine the patient’s recovery.

Complications of Concussions and Other TBI

While concussion symptoms are generally temporary, they can impact brain function in ways that affect one’s quality of life forever. Without sufficient recovery time, concussion symptoms can worsen or take longer to subside. Also, a second concussion can occur with weaker impact if the brain has not had sufficient time to recover.

Someone with post-concussion syndrome has symptoms that persist after the initial concussive event. Mood disorders, sleep problems, and other symptoms of post-concussion syndrome can have a long-lasting impact on a person’s quality of life. It is estimated that one in 10 people who have a concussion go on to experience post-concussion syndrome.

Chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE) is a degenerative medical condition caused by multiple concussions. At this time, it has only been detected in the brains of boxers and football players. Research is being done to assess the risk of CTE among the general population.

Is Compensation for Concussion Treatment Possible After a Car Accident?

The physical and emotional toll of a serious head injury are clear. But what about the added financial burden of medical bills, lost income, and property damage after car accident injuries?

If your healthcare provider confirms your concussion symptoms were caused by your car accident, you may have grounds to file a personal injury claim for damages.

In addition to standard economic costs for doctor bills, physical therapy, and other care, you may also be entitled to compensation for pain and suffering. You must show how concussion symptoms affect your health and well-being with verification from physicians and other experts.

Challenges Facing Concussion Claims

Unlike an obvious bodily injury like a broken arm, concussion symptoms are less obvious, meaning that they are more challenging to prove. This is where a skilled car accident lawyer is a great asset.

If you are involved in any type of auto accident, it is essential to save any documentation related to your case. As we have discussed, concussion symptoms are not always immediately apparent, and they can increase in severity over time.

Even if you feel okay the day of the crash, it is possible to develop symptoms later. The police report, medical records, accident scene photos, and witness testimony are like the pieces of a puzzle, that when connected, tell the story of how your accident caused your concussion and the symptoms that affect your life today.

When in doubt, save everything related to your accident and share it with your lawyer. That helps your legal team build a compelling case for fair compensation for your injuries.

Wilmington Car Accident Lawyers at Rhoades & Morrow Advocate for Injured Clients Throughout Delaware

A traumatic brain injury is a life-changing medical condition. If have questions about your legal options after a TBI, trust our experienced Wilmington car accident lawyers at Rhoades & Morrow for guidance. Call us at 302-427-9500 or inquire online to schedule a free case review today. With offices in every county, we serve clients throughout the state of Delaware.

Wilmington Car Accident Lawyers at Rhoades & Morrow Advocate for Injured Clients Across the State of Delaware.

Tips for Keeping Elderly Drivers Safe

According to the United States Census Bureau, older adults are projected to outnumber children for the first time in our nation’s history by the year 2034. This shift toward an aging population, referred to as “the graying of America” is especially important to consider in the context of motor vehicle safety.

No one is immune to the affects of aging on the body and mind. Starting at age 40 years old, mental acuity and processing gradually slows down, and night vision starts to decline. Around 50 years old, most individuals require glasses, and reaction time decreases.

At age 60 years old, muscle strength and range of motion are reduced by as much as 25 percent. People aged 70 years old and up have a higher risk of several medical conditions that hinder mental and physical fitness, including arthritis, Parkinson’s disease, diabetes, and hypertension.

Medications to manage and treat health conditions in older Americans pose an additional risk, as they can impair judgement, alertness, and reflexes. In 2019 alone, seniors accounted for 20 percent of all individuals who passed away in fatal motor vehicle accidents, according to data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). If you know an older driver, or you want to ensure you take every precaution to drive safely in your golden years, consider these tips.

Drive During the Day

Older adults may have difficulty distinguishing between certain colors, seeing up close, or adjusting to changing levels of light, making it harder to see at night. Cataracts, glaucoma, and other age-related vision problems are also more common in older adults. Senior drivers with any vision issues should wear corrective glasses or contacts, schedule regular eye exams, and stick to driving during the day when visibility is the greatest.

Buckle Up

The seat belt is essential for every passenger, and it is especially important for older drivers and passengers. Aging also affects bones and joints, making them more fragile and susceptible to injury. While a younger person may sustain a car accident without any injuries, an older person is more likely to experience broken bones and other injuries.

Avoid Distractions

Many people experience a decline in mental alertness as they get older. For that reason, it is vital for older drivers to focus all of their attention on safely operating their vehicle, as should drivers of all ages.

A distracted driving collision can happen in as little as two to three seconds. Distractions can be anything from a mobile phone to eating, grooming, or turning to interact with passengers.

Consider Medications

Older drivers who take prescription and over-the-counter medications for any reason should be mindful of any dangerous side effects. They should discuss how medicine affects driving and if taking medications together can cause grogginess, dizziness, and other side effects that interfere with safe driving.

Talk About When to Stop Driving

There is a time when driving becomes unsafe for an older person. While it is not easy to have that conversation, it is important to protect them and others on the road. The goal of this dialogue is to preserve their dignity and their independence while keeping them safe.

Cite certain behaviors or events, always focusing on the facts. You can suggest they have a physical exam, a vision test, or a driving evaluation. In some states, these tests are required at a certain age.

Frame the discussion from a place of helpfulness, not shame. Come prepared with a transportation plan that will enable them to do all the things they enjoy and remain active after they stop driving.

Alternatives to driving might include:

  • Public transportation.
  • Senior shuttles.
  • Rideshare services.
  • Family, friends, and neighbors.
  • Delivery services for food and medication.

What to Do if a Senior You Care About Cannot Safely Drive?

If a senior in your life is reluctant to stop driving, but you feel they are a danger to themselves or others, there are steps you can take. First, see if you can speak with their health care provider about your concerns. The older driver may be more receptive to hearing from a doctor they know and trust to have their best interests in mind.

Car Accidents and Older Drivers

Unlike some states that have requirements in place to retest older individuals’ ability to drive, Delaware does not have procedures in place to assess elderly drivers. It is important to remember that accidents involving older drivers are not always their fault.

After any car accident, those involved should first check everyone for injuries and call 911 if someone is hurt. Wait for police to arrive, provide license, registration, and insurance, and file a police report.

Evidence from the accident scene provides vital clues about how and why the crash happened, so those involved can take the appropriate actions and pursue claims with their insurance company and through the courts if necessary.

Wilmington Car Accident Lawyers at Rhoades & Morrow Advocate for Injured Clients Across the State of Delaware

Whether an old driver caused the accident, or they were injured as a result of a careless driver, legal help may be available. Our Wilmington car accident lawyers at Rhoades & Morrow will protect your rights. Call us at 302-427-9500 or complete our online form to schedule a free consultation. We have offices in Wilmington, Bear, Milford, and Lewes, Delaware. With offices in all three counties of Delaware, we serve clients throughout the state.

Wilmington Personal Injury Lawyers at Rhoades & Morrow Protect Families Who Have Been Harmed by Defective Toys.

W.A.T.C.H. Releases Top 10 Worst Toys List of 2022

World Against Toys Causing Harm (W.A.T.C.H.) has released its 2022 “Worst Toys” list for the holiday season. If you are a parent, you should review this list and immediately remove any named toys from your child’s collection.

As a parent, you expect toys to be safe, but not every manufacturer follows the steps they need to take. If you believe a faulty toy has injured your child, you can speak with an experienced lawyer who can help you determine your next course of action.

The top 10 most dangerous toys of this year include:

  • Cocomelon Musical Learning Watch: Potential for battery ingestion.
  • Disney Raya’s Action and Adventure Sword: Potential for blunt force and eye injuries.
  • Li’l Woodzeez Tickle-Your-Taste-Buds Bakery: Potential choking hazard.
  • Zeus Lion: Potential for ingestion or aspiration.
  • Dingray Musical Bath Toy: Potential choking hazard.
  • Ooze Labs Chemistry Station: Potential for chemical-related injuries.
  • Bunny Rabbit Cuddly Pillow: Potential for suffocation.
  • Pop’n Fidget Spinners: Potential choking hazard.
  • Nerf Pro Gelfire Mythic Blasters: Potential for eye or facial injuries.
  • Black Panther Wakanda Battle Claws: Potential for eye or facial injuries.

Claims for Defective Products

When a child is injured by a defective toy, it can be a traumatic experience for the whole family. In many cases, these injuries can be quite serious and require medical attention. If your child has been injured by a defective toy, you may be able to file a products liability claim.

Manufacturers have a responsibility to ensure that their toys are safe for children to use. When they fail to do so, they can be held liable for any injuries that occur. Your child may require substantial medical care and treatment. If successful, your claim may provide you with financial recovery.

When it comes to defective products, there is one main element that needs to be proven in order to hold a party liable: negligence. This means that a company did not take the necessary precautions to ensure that their product was safe for public use. In order to prove negligence, your legal team will need to show the party had a duty to make a safe product, that they breached this duty, and that this breach caused your child’s injuries. This can be a daunting task, as it often requires extensive research into the product design and how it failed.

There are three types of negligent products liability claims:

  • A design defect alleges the toy was designed defectively from the start.
  • A manufacturing defect alleges there was a flaw in the actual building of the toy.
  • A failure to provide a warning alleges that the manufacturer knew there was a potentially hazardous component but failed to adequately warn consumers.

In each of these scenarios, you (your lawyer) would need to collect substantial evidence to prove your claim. Since toys are usually manufactured by large corporations, expect substantial pushback and a strong legal defense. That is why it is crucial that you have legal representation.

What Are Possible Injuries From Toys?

When it comes to toys, there are a lot of things that can go wrong. Toys can be made with harmful materials, they can easily break and create sharp edges, or they can simply have small parts that can be easily swallowed. All of these dangers pose a serious risk to children who may not be aware of the hazards.

Some of the worst toys on the market are those that are made with harmful materials. These toys can contain lead paint, which is toxic and can cause serious health problems in children. In addition, some toys are made with small parts that can easily be swallowed by children. These parts can cause choking hazards and can also lead to intestinal blockages.

Another danger posed by defective toys is the risk of injury. Toys that are easily broken can create sharp edges that can cut a child’s skin. Furthermore, small parts that come off of toys can become lodged in a child’s nose or ears, leading to infection.

One of the most common types of injuries caused by toys is choking. Small parts on toys can easily become lodged in a child’s throat, leading to asphyxiation. In some cases, toy parts have even caused death.

Another common type of injury caused by defective toys is burns. Many toys include small motors or batteries, which can cause severe burns if they come into contact with skin. Children have also been injured by ingesting toxic chemicals used in some toys.

Finally, there are the toys that simply do not work as intended. These defective products often cause frustration and injuries when children try to play with them. Sometimes, children have even lost fingers or hands when trying to operate defective toys.

When a child is injured by a defective toy, they might need immediate medical care. If the child’s injuries are serious, they might need to be hospitalized. Some of the medical care that a child might need includes:

  • X-rays: To see if the child has any broken bones.
  • Treatment for cuts and bruises: To help the child heal properly.
  • IV treatment: To get fluids into the child’s body if they are dehydrated.
  • Surgery: If the child’s injuries are severe, they might need surgery to fix them.

Wilmington Personal Injury Lawyers at Rhoades & Morrow Protect Families Who Have Been Harmed by Defective Toys

Nothing is more important than your child. When you purchase a toy, you expect it to bring your child joy, not injure them. Unfortunately, some manufacturers do not always take the necessary care to keep your children safe. If your child has been injured by a defective toy, speak with one of our Wilmington personal injury lawyers at Rhoades & Morrow to learn more about your family’s legal options. Call us at 302-427-9500 or contact us online to schedule a free consultation. We have offices in Wilmington, Milford, Bear, and Lewes, Delaware. With offices in all three counties of Delaware, we serve clients throughout the state.

Wilmington Car Accident Lawyers at Rhoades & Morrow Support Safe Driving Practices This Thanksgiving.

Driving Safety Tips for the Thanksgiving Holiday Period

Now that Thanksgiving is close, safety advocacy agencies are sharing driving tips, and with good reason. The roads will be filled with millions of drivers, increasing the chances for minor and major car accidents. The big holiday travel period will start the Wednesday before the holiday and will not end until early Monday morning. What can you do to protect yourself and your loved ones while traveling for the holiday?

Prep Yourself and Your Car

A few days before the trip, take your car in for a tune-up, or perform some maintenance at home. Check your tire pressure and treads, and test the car’s battery. Top off your fluids, fill up the gas tank, and make sure that the lights are working. This is also a good time to look over your emergency kit. If you do not have one, now is the time to put one together.

An emergency kit should have bottled water, non-perishable snacks, a phone charger, flashlights, extra batteries, warning triangles, jumper cables, and small tools. If you will be driving to an area that could be impacted by snow, bring along blankets, hats gloves, sand or cat litter, and a shovel. It is also wise to have a first aid kit, extra clothes, and cleaning rags.

Eliminate Distractions

Cellphones take your focus away from the road, so make sure to turn on Do Not Disturb mode before driving. Also, enter your route into the GPS before starting the car.

Additionally, make sure that your passengers have things to keep them occupied, like books or toys for young occupants. Every passenger needs to be buckled as well.

Avoid Peak Travel Times

Avoiding peak travel times can make the trip more tolerable, but this is not always possible. The worst travel times are usually Wednesday evening, Thursday morning, and Sunday night.

If you have no choice, getting into the right mindset can help. Hitting bad traffic is likely, so try to be patient and accept the fact that you might be late. The main goal is to arrive safely.

Drive Defensively

Other drivers might be aggressive or dangerous, but you do not have to follow suit. Avoid tailgating and speeding, and keep a safe distance from other vehicles. Follow traffic signs, and designate a passenger to answer your phone.

When you encounter oversized vehicles like tractor-trailers, give them extra room, as their blind spots are larger and they have longer stopping distances. Only pass large trucks and other vehicles when it is safe to do so, and remember to use your turn signal.

Take a Break

Another important safety tip is to take regular breaks when you are traveling for Thanksgiving; this benefits everyone. You and your passengers can stretch out your legs, grab a coffee, have a snack, or take a walk. Drowsy driving is just as dangerous as driving under the influence.

Wilmington Car Accident Lawyers at Rhoades & Morrow Support Safe Driving Practices This Thanksgiving

Even the most conscientious drivers get into auto accidents, and the risks increase during holidays. If you need help after a car crash, speak with one of our Wilmington car accident lawyers at Rhoades & Morrow. Call us at 302-427-9500 or fill out our online form to schedule a free consultation. We have offices in Wilmington, Bear, Milford, and Lewes, Delaware. With offices in all three counties of Delaware, we serve clients throughout the state.

Wilmington Car Accident Lawyers at Rhoades & Morrow Can Help You if You Were Involved in a Distracted Driving Accident.

What Are Common Causes of Distracted Driving Accidents?

There are many different things competing for one’s attention when behind the wheel. It takes focus, concentration, and dedication to safely drive, but even the most vigilant motorists cannot control how others behave on the road. Recognizing common causes of distracted driving accidents and how you can help prevent one from happening is well worth your time to learn about.


The National Safety Council (NSC) estimates that about 1.6 million car accidents each year are caused by distracted driving. Nearly one out of four accidents are caused by texting.

While it is hard to ignore a text notification, reading it or sending a response will take your eyes from the road for at least five seconds. If you are driving 55 miles per hour, this can be compared to driving the entire length of a football field with your eyes shut; imagine how much worse that is when speeding.

Eating, Drinking, and Grooming

One reason why drive-throughs are so popular is because people try to save time by eating in their car. While a quick lunch in the driver’s seat can certainly save time, your hands and eyes are necessary to eat and drink. Messy foods are hard to eat in the first place, and eating while steering a vehicle in a confined space is very risky. Spilling a hot drink onto your lap could be even more dangerous.

Another time-saving activity for drivers is looking into the mirror to comb hair, floss teeth, and other kinds of grooming. Some people even try to apply eye makeup while driving.


You might not think that smoking is a distraction, but lighting up a cigarette and putting ashes into an ashtray cause you to take your eyes off the road. Sometimes, burning ashes fall onto a driver’s lap or the floor as well.

Roadside Distractions

Another way that drivers lose focus is the pull of external distractions. This includes everything from a bright billboard to rubbernecking to see a crash on the side of the road.

Car Features

The inside of your car has many features that can be distracting. Drivers are always changing music stations, adjusting temperature controls, and fiddling with other features on their dashboards.

How Can I Avoid a Distracted Driving Accident?

Multitasking while driving is a stubborn habit to break for many people. Here are some tips for breaking the habit:

  • Put your cellphone on Do Not Disturb mode before turning on your car. If you are expecting important messages, pull over after a set amount of time and check.
  • Input your destination into your GPS before driving. Check the weather and traffic reports, and plan alternate timeframes or routes if needed.
  • Set your music and climate controls before leaving.
  • If you must eat on the road, pull over somewhere safe to do so.
  • If you are constantly running late, set your alarm clock earlier so you will have enough time.
  • Keep your pets in carriers, or secure them safely in the rear of the car.
  • Never drive while fatigued or stressed.

Wilmington Car Accident Lawyers at Rhoades & Morrow Can Help You if You Were Involved in a Distracted Driving Accident

Giving your full attention to the task of driving is crucial, but you cannot control other motorists. If you have been injured in a distracted driving accident, consult with one of our Wilmington car accident lawyers at Rhoades & Morrow. Call us at 302-427-9500 or contact us online to schedule a free consultation. We are located in Wilmington, Bear, Milford, and Lewes, Delaware. With offices in all three counties of Delaware, we serve clients throughout the state.

Wilmington Car Accident Lawyers at Rhoades & Morrow Help Those Who Have Been Injured in Halloween Crashes.

Driving This Halloween? Here Are Ways to Avoid an Accident

Halloween is a fun holiday for many families. However, Halloween also comes with driving dangers. There will be an increase in traffic, and drivers will see many pedestrians in popular trick-or-treating areas. Many adults will attend Halloween parties as well, increasing the likelihood of drunk driving car accidents.

Additionally, the combination of limited visibility due to darkness and an increase in the number of pedestrians makes driving on Halloween evening even more difficult and dangerous. Fortunately, some safety precautions can help you avoid a Halloween accident.

Plan Accordingly

Halloween falls on a Monday this year, which means many people will be celebrating the holiday throughout the weekend. Many neighborhoods or communities might hold early trick-or-treating events as well.

You should try to learn when and where events are scheduled that might affect your normal travels. A busy Halloween event might create more traffic and make driving especially difficult. When you know when and where local events are scheduled, you can plan to stay away from them by taking alternate routes.

Follow the Rules of the Road

Exceeding the posted speed limit on busy roads and when pedestrian activity is high creates dangers. You should try to abide by the posted speed limits and follow other vehicles at a safe distance to help prevent accidents.

Running a stop light or a stop sign on Halloween could be dangerous for pedestrians. Disregarding traffic lights and stop signs could cause you to hit someone who is trying to cross the street on Halloween night or during an early trick-or-treating event.

Watch Out for Pedestrians and Parked Vehicles

On Halloween night, you should be extra careful when driving between sunset and about 8:00 p.m. The two hours following sunset are the most active for trick-or-treaters and their chaperones.

You should pay close attention to the sidewalks, crosswalks, and road shoulders so that you know when pedestrians are close. A child might run into the roadway for just about any reason.

You also should watch for vehicles that are pulling away from or backing out of parking spaces and driveways. The drivers might be distracted or otherwise not see you.

Maintain Your Vehicle

If you have a headlight that is out, worn tires, or other mechanical issues with your vehicle, you should leave it at home. Only a well-maintained is safe to drive.

You should make sure all of your vehicle’s lights are working and replace them if they are not. You need headlights to see and be seen while driving, and you need working brake lights and taillights so that other drivers know what you are doing. All of these things are important, especially since winter will be coming soon.

Taking some simple safety precautions can help you avoid a Halloween car accident. Another motorist, though, might thwart your efforts and cause an accident due to no fault of your own. If this happens, it is advisable to seek legal advice from a lawyer.

Wilmington Car Accident Lawyers at Rhoades & Morrow Help Those Who Have Been Injured in Halloween Crashes

Driving on Halloween can be dangerous. If you become injured in a crash, you can speak with one of our experienced Wilmington car accident lawyers at Rhoades & Morrow. Call us at 302-427-9500 or contact us online to schedule a free consultation. We are located in Wilmington, Bear, Milford, and Lewes, Delaware. With offices in all three counties of Delaware, we serve clients throughout the state.

Wilmington Car Accident Lawyers at Rhoades & Morrow Help Clients Suffering From Crash-Related Head Injuries.

What Should I Do if I Have a Headache After a Car Accident?

Whenever a car accident occurs, obtaining medical attention is the most important thing to do right away. Some people suffer from hidden injuries that are not readily apparent immediately after an accident. If you experience a headache after a car accident, and especially several days afterward, that might be an indicator of a hidden and potentially serious injury.

Possibly the biggest health threat of headaches after a car accident is the potential of having a traumatic brain injury (TBI). You could suffer a TBI whenever you suffer a blow to your head.

According to the Mayo Clinic, common signs of a TBI include:

  • Headaches.
  • Nausea and vomiting.
  • Blurred vision.
  • Ringing sound in your ears.
  • Feeling drowsy or fatigued.

If your experience headaches that worsen over time, you need to see a doctor right away. Your doctor could do an MRI scan and get a good look at any damage that might have occurred. If a TBI injury is confirmed, you might wind up in the hospital several days after your accident.

Although a headache may be a sign that you have a severe injury like a TBI, it may also just be a side effect from the accident. The mental stress and anxiety of an accident might be enough to cause bad headaches. Regardless, you should always go to a physician after a car accident, especially if you are having any sort of pain or discomfort.

If headaches occur, you should see your doctor and explain the problem. An MRI scan should tell whether or not that is a serious problem. Your doctor also could advise you to take over-the-counter medication that will help to ease the pain or prescribe something stronger if needed.

You might need to take a few days off of work to let your body heal up from the accident. That could be enough to enable your headaches to go away. If not, then you might need to see a specialist to take a closer look at your injuries.

Documenting Your Pain

Headaches after a car accident may indicate that something serious is happening in your body. Even if your doctor says you are in good health and the headaches will go away in time, you need to track them.

Jotting down notes about your headaches each day is helpful. If the headaches contributed to missing work, the loss of income could be reimbursed in an insurance claim or lawsuit. An experienced car accident lawyer is the best resource for helping document evidence of your car accident injury. If you want to find out your legal options after a car accident, speak with a lawyer as soon as possible.

Wilmington Car Accident Lawyers at Rhoades & Morrow Help Clients Suffering From Crash-Related Head Injuries

If you are suffering from a severe accident-related head injury, seek legal advice from one of our Wilmington car accident lawyers at Rhoades & Morrow. Call us at 302-427-9500 or contact us online to schedule a free consultation. We are located in Wilmington, Bear, Milford, and Lewes, Delaware. With offices in all three counties of Delaware, we serve clients throughout the state.

Wilmington Car Accident Lawyers at Rhoades & Morrow Represent Those Injured in a Car Accident.

Driving Safety Tips for Fall Season

Fall brings brilliant autumn leaves, breathable cool air, and an amazing October sky. Unfortunately, fall also creates a different set of driving conditions that could increase the chances of having an accident if a driver does not take the proper precautions.

The weather conditions and other variables during the fall season, which this year is September 22 to December 21, go from bad to worse; as a result, drivers need to make adjustments that go from cautious to high alert. From back to school to falling leaves, and early sunsets to freezing weather, the fall ushers in conditions that are different and more dangerous for drivers than the preceding summer season.

Whether you are taking a pleasure drive or simply driving to or from work, the fall season requires some simple, mindful adjustments to your driving habits. It is necessary, therefore, to take a long look at the dangers of the fall season and what you can do to keep yourself and those around you safe.

What Are the Dangers for Drivers During the Fall?

Because school is in session, the number one concern for drivers during the fall is children sharing the crosswalks and bicycling on the roads. During the morning and afternoon hours, there are children rushing to catch buses and walking to or from school. Many of them are distracted by cell phones, tablets, their friends, or any other of the numerous excitements and distractions on the street. Watch for children even when you are not near a school or park.

Halloween presents an even bigger danger for kids. According to Safe Kids Worldwide, children on Halloween have twice the chance of being hit by a car and killed on Halloween compared to other days of the year. Halloween means copious trick-or-treaters roaming around distracted by the fun.

Autumn leaves fall to the ground, and that means slippery conditions, especially in the colder weather when wet leaves freeze. Accumulations of leaves also cause cars to park away from curves and children to walk close to passing vehicles.

Because of an earlier sunset and sunrise, fall causes many drivers to struggle with sun glare. Momentary blindness for just one second could cause an accident. The potential to hit animals is also greater during the fall. According to Consumer Reports, car insurance claims for hitting animals rise considerably during the fall, which coincides with the deer mating season.

Darkness is a problem for many drivers. Visibility is simply not as good at night as during the day. Many roads have poorly lit areas, and headlight glare only exacerbates the risk of having a nighttime accident. The fact is that more accidents per driver on the road happen at night than during the day.

Overnight freezing is perhaps the most dangerous of all conditions during the fall season. The end of fall can bring winter weather, and that means overnight freezing. Icy roads are more dangerous than any other road condition.

What Are Good Tips for Fall Driving?

First and foremost: take your time, especially in residential areas. In particular, watch for kids running across the street, especially from between cars. Do not drive close to or pass a school bus. When a school bus is stopped, wait until it removes its red signal lights and stop arm.

Prepare your car for the fall weather. Keep your headlights and windshield clean, and replace your windshield wipers if they are not working properly. Also check your tire pressure more frequently, as colder weather deflates them quicker.

Always have a pair of sunglasses handy in case of glare, and slow down or pull over if your vision is affected for any reason.

Be on the lookout for animals, especially at night when driving on roads near wooded areas.

Do not use your high beams in rainy or icy conditions, as doing so could cause a reflection that hits your eyes; it is also dangerous for opposing traffic. It is best to use roads you are familiar with. Be aware of icy patches in the morning, excessive leaves on the ground, and bad weather conditions that warrant staying off the roads.

Wilmington Car Accident Lawyers at Rhoades & Morrow Represent Those Injured in a Car Accident

If you have been seriously injured because of a negligent driver or any other reason, you need a serious, competent lawyer. Our experienced Wilmington car accident lawyers at Rhoades & Morrow will fight hard to bring you the compensation you deserve. Call us at 302-427-9500 or contact us online for a free consultation. Located in Wilmington, Bear, Milford, and Lewes, Delaware, we serve clients throughout the state.

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