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Category Archives: Safety Tips


The Bear, Delware car accident lawyers at Rhoades & Morrow Focus Their Practice on Helping Seriously Injured Car Accident Victims.

What Are Driving Safety Tips for Memorial Day?

The Memorial Day holiday is quickly approaching. Memorial Day is a federal holiday in the United States for mourning the U.S. military personnel who have died while serving in the armed forces. It is also usually treated as the unofficial beginning of summer. Usually there are many parties and family get togethers during the entire Memorial Day holiday weekend.

Given the fact that the weather is finally much nicer and the winter weather is usually over with, there are a lot of back yard parties. With increased parties and events, there will be increased traffic over the entire holiday weekend. With increased traffic you will face an increased risk of getting into a car accident. This article will discuss some things you can focus on to lower the risk of getting into a car crash over the Memorial Day holiday weekend.

Tips for Safer Travel

Given the fact that it appears that the pandemic is mostly under control and many restrictions have been lifted, it is expected that travel over the Memorial Day holiday weekend significantly increased as compared to the past few years. There could easily be over 40 million Americans who will be traveling over the weekend, with about 80% of those travelers doing so by vehicle. That’s a lot of extra cars and trucks on America’s roads and highways over the weekend. AAA considers the Memorial Day holiday weekend to begin in the evening of Thursday, May 26, 2022, to the end of the day on Monday, May 30, 2022.

Here are some tips you can use to help you and your passengers stay safe if you are taking a road trip this Memorial Day weekend:

  • Follow the Rules of the Road: This means that you follow the traffic rules in your state, including speed limits, stop signs, yield signs, wear your seatbelts, do not tailgate, and try to drive defensively.

 

  • Get Your Car Prepared: Make sure your vehicle is in good working order before the trip. Make sure your lights are working, turn signals, and wiper blades work as well. Check your windshield wiper fluids and oil just to make sure there will not be any issues during your trip.

 

  • Give Yourself Enough Time: Make sure to plan ahead and give yourself enough time to get to your destination. This will stop you from rushing and driving too fast if you think you are going to be late. If the travel time is going to be several hours, then giving yourself enough time will also allow you to make stops to get coffee and stretch your legs. This also helps prevent dozing off or falling asleep behind the wheel.

 

  • Do Not Drive in Bad Weather: Check the weather before you leave. If there is going to be a storm passing over around the time you plan on driving, maybe you want to postpone the trip for a few hours and even leave earlier to beat the storm. Driving in bad weather, no matter what the bad weather, always increases the risk of getting into a crash.

 

  • Check Your Directions: Make sure you know where you are going, especially if you have not been there before. But you should check your route even if you are familiar with it because there could be construction or route diversions that could significantly affect your trip. If there are route detours you may have to give yourself more time.

 

  • Don’t Speed: Most car accidents are caused by one person or another driving too fast. A driver may be driving too fast and lose control of their vehicle. Also, a driver may be driving too fast to avert another reckless driver. So, whatever you do, do not speed.

Put Together an Emergency Kit

No matter how much you spend on the roads and highways traveling, every driver should have an emergency kit that is kept in their vehicle at all times. You should not just have an emergency kit on long trips. You never know when you may need it. What if you are stuck on the side of the road for hours with a broken down vehicle? What if you are traveling along the highway and a multivehicle crash occurs ahead and you are stuck on the highway for hours and hours? These things happen all the time to people. Therefore, you should plan for it.

These are the things that you should focus on and putting in your emergency kit:

  • First aid kit with bandages and many other potentially necessary medical supplies.
  • Car fire extinguisher.
  • Road flares for warning other vehicles.
  • Drinking water just in case you are stuck in your vehicle for several hours.
  • Non-perishable snacks.
  • Extra warm clothing like hats, socks, gloves, and a towel.
  • Paper maps for when you may not have cell service because there are still areas in the country without cell coverage.
  • Portable jump starter battery pack that also acts as a backup power source for dead phones.
  • Duct tape.

Hopefully, you will never have to use your emergency kit because that means that, luckily, you have not been in an emergency! But the purpose of an emergency kit is to have it when you need it.

The Bear, Delware car accident lawyers at Rhoades & Morrow Focus Their Practice on Helping Seriously Injured Car Accident Victims

There is always a chance that you will get into a car crash and be injured. If this happens, you are entitled to compensation for your serious injuries. Our experienced Bear, Delaware car accident lawyers at Rhoades & Morrow have been helping people seriously injured in car accidents for decades. Call us today at 302-834-8484 or fill out our online form for a free consultation. With offices in all three counties of Delaware, we service clients throughout the state.

Wilmington Car Accident Lawyers at Rhoades & Morrow Can Protect Your Rights After an Accident.

How Is a Car’s Safety Rating Determined?

When looking to purchase a car, a person has to consider several important factors, such as what they can afford. However, it is also important to consider the safety rating of the vehicle.

In many cases, the more expensive cars are safer. However, nowadays, new safety features are being invented and introduced to cars often, and safety testing is performed on new cars. Finding a car at your price point with a good safety rating should be your goal.

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) performs crash tests on the new auto models every year and determines the safety ratings of those vehicles. The IIHS uses a series of tests involving dummies, and they crash these vehicles from different angles.

Frontal Crash Tests

Head-on collisions are responsible for the most car accident fatalities. The IIHS conducts low- and moderate-speed tests to see how a crash impacts a vehicle and the space for occupants. The IIHS has three different types of frontal crash tests that they perform:

  • Moderate impact tests: The vehicle travels at 40 miles per hour toward a barrier, striking at 40 percent of the vehicle width on the driver’s side front.
  • Two small impact tests on the driver and passenger side: This test is designed to replicate what happens when the front left corner of a vehicle collides with another vehicle or an object, like a tree or utility pole. It challenges safety belt and airbag designs because the crash causes occupants to move both forward and to the side of the vehicle. The test is repeated on the passenger side.

The reason for the two tests is that the outer edges of a vehicle are not well protected and the force of the crash usually goes into the front wheel, suspension system, and firewall. Often, this means the wheel will be forcefully pushed backward into the footwell, which can result in serious foot and leg injuries.

Side-Impact Tests

Side-impact collisions account for about 25 percent of all motor vehicle accident fatalities in the United States, according to the IIHS. The sides of cars do not have much room between the window and door and the person seated inside. Occupants sitting near the doors do not have much to shield them from the force of an impact.

Some important factors engineers are looking for in these crash tests include:

  • Driver and passenger injury measures: Damage done to the dummies correlates injuries for people involved in a crash. Measures from sensors on the dummies, especially the ones from the head and upper body, are major components of each vehicle’s overall side safety rating.
  • Head protection: To determine how well the dummies heads are protected in the crash, the dummies heads are covered in grease paint before the test. If a vehicle has airbags that perform correctly, it will wind up with grease paint on the airbags.
  • Safety cage: Determining how well the safety cage performs during a collision is another test for the side of the car. It is expected that some intrusion into the seating area of the car will happen, but engineers are looking for a vehicle structure that is strong enough to keep that impact from seriously compromising the driver and passenger space.

Roof Strength

Every year, many people are killed in rollover car accidents. Fortunately, electronic stability control significantly reduces rollover collisions. Features such as side curtain airbags and strong seat belts help protect the people inside the vehicle. However, a strong roof also contributes to seat belt and airbag safety because a sturdy roof will not collapse. It also means that people inside the vehicle are less likely to wind up being ejected through the windshield or windows because of a severely damaged roof.

Head Restraints and Seat Tests

Neck injuries, such as whiplash, are common in car accidents, and a good head restraint can prevent these injuries from happening. Neck injuries can result from any type of collision, however, most often, they result from rear-end car accidents.

To perform these tests, a vehicle seat and dummy are placed on a sled that is then moved to simulate the impact of a crash.

Headlights

About half of vehicle crashes in the United States happen at night, which is why headlight safety is a critical component in crash prevention. Not all headlights perform equally when needed. The IIHS tests include checking headlights from straight ahead, curving to the right or left, or sharply curving to the right or left.

Front Crash Prevention Systems

Front crash prevention systems help drivers avoid car accidents with vehicles ahead of them. Since 2019, manufacturers have introduced a front crash prevention system that also recognizes pedestrians. The system and score are designed to help consumers choose a safe car.

Lower Anchors and Tethers

The Lower Anchors and Tethers for Children (LATCH) system is designed to protect small children who are in car safety seats from being ejected out of the vehicle or from the seat coming loose. These tests are for the bottom component, which anchors the car safety seat, and the top, which is designed to keep the seat from pitching forward in a crash.

With these tests in mind, the IIHS hopes to offer consumers enough information about how their car could perform in a crash. Before buying a car, you should review its safety rating.

Wilmington Car Accident Lawyers at Rhoades & Morrow Can Protect Your Rights After an Accident

Before you purchase a car, you should review its safety rating. However, even if you have the safest car, you can still get into an accident. Our Wilmington car accident lawyers at Rhoades & Morrow have decades of experience advocating for people involved in all types of auto collisions, and we can help if you have been severely injured in an accident. Call us at 302-427-9500 or fill out our online form for a free consultation. Located in Wilmington, Bear, and Milford, Delaware, we serve clients throughout Middletown, Dover, Milford, Lewes, Rehoboth, Elsmere, and Seaford.

stay safe dangerous weather

Staying Safe in Dangerous Weather Conditions

Over the last month, the state has been bombarded by winter weather, including snow, sleet, ice, and freezing rain. This can leave the sidewalk, steps, and driveway in front of a home dangerously slippery. For that reason, it is best to clear any snow or ice accumulation as early as possible in the day. After all, the longer the dangerous conditions are permitted to exist, the more likely it is that someone could be injured. Some municipalities even have ordinances requiring snow removal only hours after the snow stops falling.

When shoveling snow and ice, be sure to place it somewhere where it will not block roads, drains, and sidewalks. Use rock salt to melt any remaining snow and ice by sprinkling it generously over affected areas. If salt is not available, sprinkle ash, sand, or even cat litter for traction over icy areas instead. For elderly or disabled neighbors, consider offering to clear their properties of snow and ice. If an individual is elderly or disabled, or they simply do not have time to clear their own property of snow and ice, enlist some neighbors.

If an individual is a renter or in a homeowner’s association, be clear about what one’s lease or homeowner’s association policy says about their responsibilities. Many landlords leave snow removal from the streets to the local authorities but might take care of snow removal on sidewalks in front of homes. However, their responsibility, if any, may kick in only if there is a significant amount of snow; lighter flurries of snow that nevertheless produce icy conditions might be left to the individual. In such cases, or in cases where the balance of responsibility for clearing snow and ice falls on the individual, salt or other de-icing material will need to be available on hand, as well as a good snow shovel to clear a driveway, personal parking space, and sidewalk. Consult one’s lease or homeowner’s association policy for clarity on particular responsibilities.

Owners of brick-and-mortar businesses should also have a snow shovel handy. If a business does not have an adjacent parking lot that they are responsible for, it is best to keep the storefront clear of snow and ice. However, if a business has a parking lot to keep safe and accessible, consider hiring a snow removal service to help keep it clear. At a minimum, these services typically offer de-icing, plowing, shoveling, reporting, and seasonal inspections. Many snow removal services allow custom contracts based on the size of the area to be cleared and the frequency with which the business wants the snow removal performed. Shop around to find a contractor who can provide the services needed.

During dangerous weather conditions, victims can be injured due to no fault of their own. In these cases, contact a knowledgeable Delaware personal injury lawyer at Rhoades & Morrow today. For a free consultation, call 302-427-9500 or fill out an online form to get started. Located in Wilmington, Bear, and Milford, Delaware, the firm serves clients throughout Delaware.

adverse weather conditions

How to Drive in Adverse Weather Conditions

Good weather makes the roads safer. Unfortunately, clear skies and warm temperatures do not occur every day. Drivers must often contend with unpleasant weather conditions such as snow, sleet, rain, and fog. Many times, these conditions change rapidly, and the risk for a car accident increases. Drivers should be aware of essential tips that will help reduce their risk for a car accident.

Slow Down Whenever Possible

Every motorist should learn to ease off the gas when weather becomes poor. The posted speed limit is for ideal weather conditions, so drivers should adapt their speed to current road conditions. If the safest speed is significantly less than the posted limit, drivers should turn on emergency hazards to alert others on the road.

Use Low Beams or High Beams Appropriately

Car lights are extremely useful when visibility plummets. However, not all conditions warrant high-beams. In fact, low-beams are required when there is fog because high-beams can reflect off water particles, causing the bright light to obscure the driver’s view. On the other hand, high-beams should be used during snow, rainstorms, and certainly at nighttime.

Prepare for Sun and Windshield Glare

Sunlight may cause significant windshield glare, particularly during dawn and dusk. If the glare becomes too intense, it can make navigation nearly impossible for drivers. Many car accidents are caused from sun glare, and the easiest way to avoid glare is to drive during low-glare times. If that is not realistic for commuters, they should wear anti-glare sunglasses and use their vehicle’s visors.

Understand the Rules of Driving on Snow and Ice

Snow and ice limits traction between the wheels of a car and the surface of the road. Certain types of winter weather tires can help increase the likelihood of traction by gripping the highway. Additionally, motorists driving on snow or ice should slow down to safer speeds while trying not to suddenly stop. If skidding occurs, it is best to turn the wheels towards the direction of the skid rather than away.

Drive Defensively When the Wind Picks Up

Wind can become a hazard on the road. Very windy conditions may make handling any vehicle difficult. Truckers trailing high-profile cabs may be susceptible to tipping when the wind becomes intense. Consequently, motorists should drive cautiously in wind and pay attention to the prevailing gusts, compensating as necessary.

Limit and Eliminate All Driving Distractions

All drivers on the road need to eliminate distractions. Distracted driving leads to car wrecks and serious injuries; many of these wrecks are preventable. All drivers should only eat while the vehicle is stopped and put away cellphones to avoid distractions. Most importantly, do not drive while extremely fatigued or intoxicated.

Milford Accident Lawyers at Rhoades & Morrow Represent All Injured Car Accident Victims

If you were injured in a car accident, you may be eligible for compensation. Winter weather causes serious hazards on the road. Even while using extra precautions, drivers can still get into a collision. Our experienced Milford accident lawyers at Rhoades & Morrow will give you legal guidance about your case. Contact us online or call us at 302-422-6705 for a free consultation. Located in Wilmington, Bear, and Milford, Delaware, we also serve clients in Elsmere and Seaford.

safety driving tips seniors

Safety Driving Tips for Seniors

Seniors encounter both physical and mental challenges as they age. These challenges often affect the driving ability for the elderly. It is important for seniors to stay safe while driving in order to prevent a potential car accident that could result in auto-injuries. Aging does not necessarily mean that you need to stop driving. However, there are some tips to help senior drivers be safe on the roads.

Challenges Behind the Wheel

As a senior, more physical challenges arise. The following are some physical challenges that seniors may face:

  • Eyesight and Hearing Problems: If someone has problems with their eyesight, it may be challenging to read signs, view street markings, or see is there is a pedestrian crossing the street. Hearing loss can make it difficult for a senior to hear oncoming traffic, including emergency responders.
  • Loss of Flexibility and Coordination: Aging may affect flexibility and coordination. This presents challenges to senior drivers during navigation. It may be difficult to look over their shoulder before switching lanes or difficult to move their feet from the gas pedal to the brake.
  • Side Effects from Medication: Side effects from medication can include dizziness, fatigue, blurry vision, and other symptoms that can impair your ability to drive.

Safety Tips for Seniors

In order to safely operate a vehicle, a senior driver can do the following:

  • Regular Vision and Hearing Exams: Seniors are more susceptible to conditions such as glaucoma, cataracts, and hearing loss. These conditions can make it extremely difficult to drive, specifically at night and in traffic.
  • Take a Refresher Course: Courses can help seniors stay informed about the laws and guidelines of driving. This is important for seniors who may not have had formal driving education.
  • Stay Physically Active: Physical activity improves your flexibility and strength. Physical fitness can help a senior maneuver a vehicle more easily.
  • Acknowledge Limitations: Aging means you may not be able to perform, or perform efficiently, certain tasks that you could previously accomplish. Driving can be difficult for a senior. Acknowledging this can help you make necessary driving adjustments.
  • Avoid Driving in Bad Weather: If possible, do not drive if there is bad weather or poor road conditions. If visibility is poor, or if roads are icy or snow-covered, delay or cancel any driving plans.
  • Avoid Cell Phone Use: This is important for drivers of any age. It is vital to keep your focus on the road while operating your vehicle.

New Castle Car Accident Lawyers at Rhoades & Morrow Represent Clients Injured in Car Accidents

If you or someone you know was injured in a car accident, you may be eligible for compensation. Our experienced New Castle car accident lawyers at Rhoades & Morrow support victims who have suffered injuries in a car accident. Contact us online or call us at 302-427-9500 for a free consultation regarding your potential case. Our dedicated lawyers will fight to protect your rights. Located in Wilmington, Bear, and Milford, Delaware, we also serve clients in Elsmere and Seaford, and throughout the state.

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