Are Men Worse Drivers Than Women?

In today’s world, both men and women generally drive motor vehicles to commute to work or school or to run errands. As a result, the age-old question of whether men or women are better drivers continues to be debated. Unfortunately, it is a question that has no easy answers. In fact, a recent article on Yahoo News suggests that neither men nor women are very good drivers and that both take different risks behind the wheel that can increase the risk of a collision.

When a collision does happen, the victim or surviving family members may have certain rights to obtain compensation. A personal injury lawyer can help those who have been harmed in a motor vehicle crash to understand their rights and pursue a claim.

Accident Risks: Male Drivers vs. Female Drivers

At first glance, it appears that information on male vs. female drivers is conflicting. For example:

  • Yahoo reports that a 25-year-old Oakland man with no accidents and no past tickets is going to pay $385 more in premiums for car insurance than a woman with the same driving history. Since insurers charge based on risk, this would suggest men are worse drivers. The gap between men and women’s premiums doesn’t go away as people age, although it narrows. Men end up paying thousands more during their life.
  • Readers’ Digest reports that men tend to be better than women at many different kinds of driving skills. This would suggest that men are actually better drivers than women.
  • The Daily Mail reported on a study of 6.5 million motor vehicle collisions between 1998 and 2007. Research into the collisions showed more collisions than expected involving two female drivers. Intersections were a high-risk area for collisions involving women.

When looking more carefully at the data, it is easy to explain the apparent discrepancy. All of the studies show that while women may get into more fender benders and minor collisions, men tend to get into more very serious collisions.

Men are more likely than women are to drive while they are under the influence of alcohol or drugs. They are much more likely to speed when they drive than women are. They make up 71 percent of people who are killed in motor vehicle collisions in the United States. When they are involved in accidents, the collision is more likely to be caused not by a lack of skill but instead by aggressive driving or other dangerous behavior.

When a person totals a car, it is much more expensive for the insurance company than a fender bender. Likewise, if a driver causes very serious injury or even death to passengers or others on the road, insurance companies may have to pay out very large settlements to victims or surviving family members. As a result, insuring men costs more and men pay higher premiums not because they are more likely to become involved in collisions but instead because they are more likely to be involved in serious collisions.

Contact a Hartford accident attorney today at the Law Offices of Mark E. Salomone & Morelli. Calling 1-800-WIN-WIN-1 for your free case consultation.

Accident Prevention & Road Safety Efforts

The Governors Highway Safety Association has published its annual report on agency activities. The GHSA is responsible for helping to improve road safety and reduce collisions. The report details the progress that is being made in protecting the public on roadways.

Unfortunately, accidents continue to occur even as safety laws get tighter and safety efforts improve. If you or a loved one is the victim of a collision, a personal injury lawyer can represent you.

GHSA Report on Accident Prevention Efforts

The GHSA report provides information on the progress that has been made in reducing the dangers of some of the major risks that motorists face on the roads. For example:

  • Since 2010, more states have begun enacting and enforcing distracted driving laws. Just three years ago, only 28 states reported that distracted driving was a safety concern necessitating attention. There has been a 43 percent increase and now 40 states report distracted driving as a concern. The public is also becoming more aware, as more than 20,000 people accessed online resources on distracted driving provided by GHSA.
  • Motor vehicle collisions remain the leading cause of death for young people between the ages of 15 and 20. Teenagers become involved in three times the number of fatal motor vehicle collisions as all other drivers. Efforts to reduce teen driving deaths include the Ford Driving Skills for Life Program, which is in its 11th year and which GHSA helped to develop. The DSFL program awarded $100,000 to state highway safety offices last fiscal year to promote safe driving for teens. National Driver Safety Week was also held in October of last year.
  • Drugged driving is becoming a bigger concern as states like Colorado and Washington have legalized recreational marijuana use. GHSA strengthened its drugged driving policy last year and is encouraging states to expand existing Administrative Law Revocations or enact new revocation laws for drug-impaired motorists who refuse to take a drug test. Administrative revocation of a license is already the law in most cases when a motorist refuses to take a test to detect his blood alcohol concentration (BAC).
  • Motorcycle fatalities declined seven percent last year, but motorcycle safety has not increased over the past 15 years. The GHSA published a report featured in 20 publications on the issue, which prompted advocacy for new laws to require helmets for all riders in four states.
  • Motor vehicle collisions remain a leading cause of fatalities for young children. However, more than a million people visited GHSA’s online resources to learn about child safety seat laws last year.

GHSA is also working with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration to facilitate the implementation the Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century (MAP-21) law, which was signed into law in July of 2012 to fund transportation programs nationwide.

While government agencies could certainly do much more to help motorists and to improve road safety, this report highlights some areas where the GHSA is at least trying to make a difference in reducing the risk of collisions.

Contact a Hartford accident attorney today at the Law Offices of Mark E. Salomone & Morelli. Calling 1-800-WIN-WIN-1 for your free case consultation.

Connecticut Taking Aggressive Approach to Stop Student Accidents Among Athletes

Student accidents are a very real risk for both high school and college athletes. Unfortunately, when the school staff overseeing the sports programs are not properly trained, young people may be at risk of brain injuries and other serious health problems.

The state of Connecticut has taken an aggressive approach to protecting young athletes from getting hurt at school, passing legislation designed to ensure that schools do what it takes to keep kids safe. If a student accident causes injury to you or a loved one, call the Law Offices of Mark E. Salomone & Morelli.

Connecticut Laws Designed to Reduce Student Accidents

According to the Norwich Bulletin, Connecticut became one of the first states in the country to enact legislation designed to minimize the risk of concussion to young people playing sports. Concussions can impact memory and cognitive function and can have a lasting impact on health, including increasing the risk of dementia later in life, particularly in cases involving repeated head injuries. Lawmakers in Connecticut enacted legislation in 2010, as the dangers of concussions became more well-established.

Under the legislation, anyone given a state permit to coach either interscholastic or intramural sports is required to receive periodic training on both recognizing and treating concussions. Further, any student who was sidelined for having a suspected concussion is required to get medical clearance before being allowed to resume playing the sport.

Other states have since passed similar legislation designed to ensure that school staff and coaches know how to respond appropriately to a head injury. Connecticut decided to once again consider the issue of concussions and sports accidents in 2014, to expand its laws and to continue to be a leader in protecting children.

The General Assembly’s Committee on Children heard testimony about an expansion to the 2010 concussion law, which would impose tougher restrictions and add additional public education components.

The proposed law would limit the amount of time spent in practices for contact sports to a total of 90 minutes per week. The State Board of Education would also be required to develop a concussion education plan and operators of youth athletic activities would be required to provide information on the risks of concussions to both young athletes and their parents. Local and regional school boards would need to report all instances of concussions that young student athletes experience, and an awareness education program would be developed about the dangers of concussions.

Taking a comprehensive approach to preventing concussions is important because of the lasting risks of brain injury, especially on a developing brain. When a young person does suffer brain injury, it is important to determine if the school or coaches were negligent in a way that caused or exacerbated the damage. In such cases, it may be possible for the victim and his family members to obtain compensation for the losses and damages resulting from the brain injury.

Contact a Hartford accident attorney today at the Law Offices of Mark E. Salomone & Morelli. Calling 1-800-WIN-WIN-1 for your free case consultation or visit http://www.salomoneandmorelli.com.

Look Before You Lock Prevents Child Injury in Connecticut

When a child is left inside of a hot car, that child could suffer brain damage or loss of life. Unfortunately, some parents leave kids inside of their cars on purpose while they run in to do errands, not realizing the risk they are taking. Other parents accidentally leave a child in the back of the vehicle because they forget their kids are there.

Parents are not the only ones who may endanger a child by leaving their son or daughter in a vehicle in the heat. There are also instances where children are left inside of buses or inside of daycare vans and are injured or lose their lives as a result. If a caregiver causes a child injury, a personal injury attorney can help parents to take legal action.

Look Before You Lock

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) is running a campaign to try to draw attention to the danger of leaving a child inside of a hot vehicle. From May through September, the “Look Before You Lock” campaign encourages parents to get into the habit of checking the front and back seats every time before they lock their car. This way, they will see if a child has been left inside before tragedy strikes.

The Look Before You Lock Campaign could help to reverse a disturbing trend of children dying of heat stroke. Each year since 1998, an average of 38 children have died each year when they were left inside of cars. Last year in 2013, there were at least 44 fatalities in the U.S. and there have already been several deaths in 2014.

Children may not only be at risk if parents unintentionally leave them in vehicles, but some parents leave kids inside of their cars on purpose. Parents may think that they are leaving their children for just a second while they run into a store, but it does not take very long for a child’s temperature to reach a dangerous level. If a child’s temperature hits 107, the child will die. Unfortunately, kids are less able to regulate body temperature than adults are and their bodies can heat up anywhere from three to five times faster than adults’ bodies.

Despite the risks of heat stroke, around 14 percent of all parents in the United States said that they have left their child unattended inside of a vehicle. Only eight percent of moms said that they do this, but 23 percent of dads admitted to leaving kids in cars. Children under three are at the biggest risk, and 23 percent of parents of children in this age group have indicated that they have left children inside of cars.

This means that around 3.3 million kids are potentially being put at risk of heat stroke within the United States. On a day in the mid-80s with the window cracked two inches, a child could die within 10 minutes in a hot car. Parents need to understand this incredible danger and avoid putting their children at risk.

Contact a Hartford personal injury lawyer today at the Law Offices of Mark E. Salomone & Morelli. Calling 1-800-WIN-WIN-1 for your free case consultation or visit http://www.salomoneandmorelli.com

Is Your Dog Increasing Your Risk of a Hartford Car Accident?

Most pet owners bring their dogs in the car with them at some point, whether to run errands, go to the dog park or pet store or head out on a leisure trip. In fact, according to AAA Pet Spot, as many as 84 percent of survey respondents said that their animal had been their companion in the car.

Although many pet owners are taking their dog along, only 16 percent of respondents said that they used some kind of pet restraint system in their vehicles. Without a pet restraint system a dog can be a distraction and a danger in the event that an accident happens. The animal is at risk, as are people in the car with him and others on the road.

If you are the victim of an accident caused by a driver who is distracted by a pet, you need to understand your rights. Contact a personal injury lawyer for help.

Dogs Can be a Distraction in the Car

When your pet is in the vehicle with you, the dog can cause you to take your eyes off the road. A total of 29 percent of survey respondents were aware that their pet was a distraction and admitted to doing distracting behavior. In reality, however, 65 percent participated in at least one activity involving their dog that took their focus off the road. For example:

  • 52 percent of people who had their dog with them in the car pet their dog while driving.
  • 17 percent said that they allowed their dog to sit on their lap while they were operating the vehicle.
  • 13 percent of respondents gave food or treats to their dog while they were driving.
  • Four percent said that they played with their dog as they were operating their vehicle.

All of these different behaviors cause drivers to take their focus away from the road and increase the chances that an accident will happen. Unfortunately, if a collision does occur and the animal is unrestrained, the outcome can be deadly.

As Esurance reports, a dog that weighs just 10 pounds can turn into a projectile that generates 500 pounds of force in a crash that occurs at 50 miles per hour. When going even slower at just 30 miles per hour, a dog that weighs 80 pounds can generate 2,400 pounds of force. If the dog hits someone in the car, both the animal and the driver or passenger may be killed.

Preventing accidents does not mean you have to stop traveling with your pet. Instead, you can simply use a pet restraint system to keep your pet safe and to ensure your animal is not a distraction. There are special seat belts made for pets that you can consider, but do not try to use human seat belts as this is not safe. You can also put your pet into a crate or carrier that is securely fastened in order to avoid the risks that a dog can present while driving.

Contact a Hartford personal injury attorney today at the Law Offices of Mark E. Salomone & Morelli. Calling 1-800-WIN-WIN-1 for your free case consultation or visit http://www.salomoneandmorelli.com

High Cost of Traffic Accidents in Connecticut, Nationwide

Motor vehicle collisions can result in serious financial consequences for victims, in addition to a change in quality of life and lasting pain. Measuring how much damage a crash causes is difficult, especially when the accident results in permanent injuries or death. However, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) recently released an estimate of the extent of financial damage to society resulting from collisions.

Drivers who cause collisions are responsible for compensating victims. Accident attorneys in Connecticut from the Law Offices of Mark E. Salomone & Morelli can help those who have been hurt in a motor vehicle accident.

Measuring Economic Loss from Motor Vehicle Accidents

Motor vehicle collisions in the United States have economic costs, such as the expenditures resulting from medical treatments and from lost wages when injuries make it difficult to work. There is also a societal cost due to lost life, decreased quality of life and pain.

The NHTSA assessed the costs of 32,999 deaths, 3.9 million non-fatal injuries and 24 million damaged cars in 2010. Based on the number of crashes that occurred, the NHTSA calculated that there were $277 billion in economic costs and $594 billion in societal costs from accidents. The economic costs alone were almost $900 per person in the U.S. and the total expenditures from motor vehicle accidents reached $871 billion.

The vast majority of the costs and expenditures came from three top causes of motor vehicle collisions. These included driving while impaired by alcohol, driving while distracted and excessive speed.

Distracted driving collisions were responsible for causing 17 percent of the overall economic lost and the cost came in at $46 billion. This is a cost of $148 per person on average for each person within the United States. When including losses due to decreased quality of life and pain, the price tag of distracted driving crashes was $129 billion. Drivers who were distracted caused 15 percent of overall societal harm resulting from motor vehicle accidents.

Speeding was even more costly. Drivers who traveled too fast for current conditions or who exceeded the speed limit accounted for 21 percent of the total economic losses that occurred within the United States. The total actual economic expense from speeding was $59 billion in 2010, which averages out to $191 per person in the United States. Speeders were also responsible for 24 percent of overall societal harm, which came at a cost of $210 billion.

Finally, drunk drivers were another big reason for the high costs of car accidents. Collisions caused by impaired drivers accounted for 18 percent of total economic loss and cost $49 billion. When factoring in lost quality of life and other societal costs, drunk driving came in at a cost of $199 billion, which accounted for 23 percent of overall societal harm.

When drivers make dangerous choices, they need to be held accountable for their actions and need to pay for the damages they cause. An experienced attorney can help victims to take legal action.

Contact a Hartford accident attorney today at the Law Offices of Mark E. Salomone & Morelli. Calling 1-800-WIN-WIN-1 for your free case consultation or visit http://www.salomoneandmorelli.com.

Protecting Connecticut Kids from Pedestrian Injuries

Pedestrian traffic injuries may cause as many as 1.2 million deaths and 50 million injuries worldwide each year.  In the United States alone, one pedestrian is killed an average of once every nine minutes. Young children and the elderly are at a much greater risk of pedestrian collisions, and in motorized countries, pedestrian accidents are the second-leading cause of unintentional injury deaths among kids between the ages of five and 14.

An article published in the Journal of TRAUMA® Injury, Infection and Critical Care reviewed the history of efforts to prevent pediatric pedestrian crashes and provided some tips on how lives could be saved. Unfortunately, there have been relatively few programs that have succeeded in reducing pedestrian deaths. Drivers need to play a very important role in watching out for kids and helping to ensure they stay safe. Accident attorneys in Connecticut can represent children and families injured by pedestrian crashes and help them to take legal action if a negligent driver causes a collision.

Preventing Pediatric Pedestrian Accidents

Programs designed to prevent childhood pedestrian accidents date back as far as the 1950, when clinicians in the United Kingdom designed a method called the Kerb Drill. This involved making children recite rules in a military style. The Green Cross Code was also introduced, establishing a set of easy-to-follow guides for crossing roads that are still used widely throughout Britain today.

In the 1970’s, British doctors formed a Child Accident Prevention Trust (CAPT) to raise awareness among parents and decision makers about how unintentional injuries in children can be prevented.

In the late 1980s, the World Health Organization released studies showing that the best way to reduce the rate of childhood pedestrian crashes involved combining education with interventions in the community and the environment. The WHO believes that achieving safety for pedestrian children involves three E’s: education, engineering and enforcement.

A program founded in 1987, called the Safe Kids Organization, was established in Washington D.C. and used the WHO’s principles. The goal of Safe Kids was to change attitudes, behaviors, the environment and the law in order to reduce the risk of kids getting hurt. The program is active with education and lobbying efforts at local levels, and Safe Kids programs are available in 150 cities.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) have also teamed up to tackle the issue of childhood pedestrian safety. They conducted a multidisciplinary conference in 2002 and experts developed strategies for reducing childhood pedestrian crashes.

The results of the CDC and NHTSA efforts confirmed that neither education nor environment modification do enough to single handedly reduce the risk of childhood pedestrian crashes. They should be combined with behavior evaluation and skills training.

Focusing on social and environmental risk factors and educating kids has helped to reduce the rate of pedestrian accidents, and thus make kids safer. There is still a long way to go, but safety experts continue to work on developing methods of saving children’s lives.

Contact a Hartford accident attorney today at the Law Offices of Mark E. Salomone & Morelli. Calling 1-800-WIN-WIN-1 for your free case consultation.

A Hartford Accident Lawyer Stands up to Insurers

After a traffic collision, you often need a Hartford accident lawyer to help deal with insurance companies.  Insurers have many dishonest and underhanded tactics designed to stop you from getting full compensation for injuries.

Recently, the American Association for Justice compiled a list of the Ten Worst Insurance Companies in America.  A quick look at this list and the behavior of the insurers is enough to make clear that you absolutely should have a lawyer after a collision so the insurance company doesn’t deprive you.

The Bad Behavior of the Worst Insurers

The insurance companies that made the list of the 10 worst insurers in the U.S. included, in order:

  1. Allstate
  2. Unum
  3. AIG
  4. State Farm
  5. Conseco
  6. WellPoint
  7. Farmers
  8. UnitedHealth
  9. Torchmark
  10. Liberty Mutual

Some of these insurance companies provide only health insurance while others offer car accident insurance, homeowners’ insurance and other policies. Together, the U.S. insurance industry takes in premiums of more than $1 trillion every year to provide coverage for losses that affect you. The industry even has $3.8 trillion in assets, but still companies try to pay less than victims deserve after collisions.

The specifics of the wrongdoing vary from insurer to insurer; however, Allstate exemplifies the tactics and shortcomings of many of these companies.  Allstate has said its obligation is to “earn a return for our shareholders.”  It uses a secret claim-evaluation software called Colossus and when policyholders file a claim, they are offered a low payment without justification. This lets the company keep more money at the expense of policy holders and accident victims.

If those making a claim decline to accept the low settlement, then the “boxing gloves” come out and Allstate does everything possible not to pay. Allstate employees call its practices the “three D’s,” which stand for deny, delay and defend.

The company tries to drag out the process so people get desperate for money and accept low settlements and it tries to bury victims and attorneys in paperwork to discourage them from going forward with court action to get compensation.

Employees are told to lie, according to reports from adjusters who are no longer with the company.  Allstate adjusters are also given incentives for keeping claim payments low.

While Allstate is especially egregious, all of the companies on this list use tricks to try to deprive claimants. AIG, for example, is one of few insurance companies that make money on underwriting rather than investments of policy holder premiums. This means it has to be aggressive in paying out as little as it can in claims so that it makes more in premiums than it pays out.

AIG has locked checks in safety deposit boxes that should have gone to victims and kept the checks there until claimants complained. AIG has also delayed attorney fees; and disposed of important correspondence during special parties.   The insurer was even sanctioned by a judge for trying to block evidence in an environmental case.

Insurance companies often get away with these bad behaviors. They have consultants and experts, money and influence. You need help level the playing field and stand up for your rights by getting legal help from an experienced Hartford accident attorney.

Contact a Hartford accident attorney today at the Law Offices of Mark E. Salomone & Morelli. Call 1-800-WIN-WIN-1 for your free case consultation.

Connecticut Hospital Conditions Common Factor in Medical Malpractice

Federal inspectors recently issued a report citing the VA Connecticut Healthcare System Hospital in West Haven for unsanitary conditions, inadequate infection control and even an insect problem.

Despite the findings, officials say there is no “conclusive” evidence at this point that the sanitation problems resulted in care deficiencies or negative patient outcomes.

However, as Hartford injury attorneys we recognize that anytime such conditions exist, the likelihood of negligent care is significantly higher.

Part of the reason has to do with the fact that a staff that doesn’t have time to clean may be stretched thin in other areas. Doctors and nurses who don’t have enough time to spend with their patients may be more prone to commit misdiagnoses, medication errors and other substandard care.

Another reason unsanitary conditions are more likely to produce negative patient outcomes has to do with the risk of infection. When facilities, personnel and equipment are not properly cleaned, the risk of a hospital-acquired infection skyrockets.

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and prevention reports that hospital-acquired infections affect about 1 in every 20 patients who is hospitalized. The direct medical cost of these incidents is through the roof, costing between $35 billion to $45 billion in hospital resources annually.

Guess who pays those bills?

The patients who were victimized in the first place.

The CDC estimates that if hospitals were to spend about $5 billion to $6 billion annually, they could all but eliminate the instances of hospital-acquired infections. The key is proper sanitation, effective tools and staff training.

Infections can be viral, bacterial or fungal and they range from mild to life-threatening. The risk is further exacerbated by the fact that so-called “superbugs,” aggressive strains of illness resistant to antibacterial treatments, are becoming more and more common in hospital settings. One such strain was recently blamed in 16 deaths at a single hospital in Manchester, England over the last four years.

In Canada, authorities indicate that some 220,000 citizens develop infections every year during hospital stays, with some 22 dying daily as a result – costing some $2,000 to $20,000 each. That’s why health officials there have adopted vigorous methods of cleaning and sanitation at each facility.

Here in the U.S., however, a recent study published in the February issue of the American Journal of Infection Control suggests hospitals – particularly those offering intensive care unit services – have had a fairly uneven compliance rate with sanitation standards.

In the largest study of its kind, researchers from Columbia University and the CDC analyzed the practices of more than 1,500 ICUs at 975 hospitals, with special attention paid to the implementation of 16 different infection prevention measures. The study authors were especially interested in how hospitals worked to curb central-line bloodstream infections, ventilator-associated pneumonia and catheter-related urinary tract infections.

While all of those participating had measures in place to prevent infection, compliance ranged from 27 percent to 92 percent, depending on the hospital and the measure being analyzed.

For example, compliance with ventilator-associated pneumonia prevention actions ranged from 69 percent to 91 percent. However, compliance to prevent catheter-associated urinary tract infections ranged from 27 percent to 68 percent.

These kinds of figures are unacceptable. Those who have suffered as a result  may be entitled to compensation.

Contact a Hartford accident attorney today at the Law Offices of Mark E. Salomone & Morelli. Calling 1-800-WIN-WIN-1 for your free case consultation.

Hartford Traffic Deaths Should be a Primary Safety Focus

The elimination of motor vehicle deaths in any city is a tall order. It’s seems almost impossible in a place like New York City. Yet, Mayor Bill de Blasio is demanding just that, ordering police personnel to focus more of their energies on traffic enforcement – as opposed to violent crime reduction and enforcement.

The strategy has been controversial. It’s not that lowering violent crime isn’t a worthy or important cause. However, de Blasio has a point, particularly when you begin to look at the number of people who suffer as a result of motor vehicle crashes versus those who are victimized by violent crime.

First, our Hartford accident attorneys would point out that the number of Connecticut homicides in 2012 was 143. That’s according to annual uniform crime reporting statistics from the state. Meanwhile, the National Highway Transportation & Safety Administration indicates that the number of traffic fatalities that same year was 220.

That means the number of traffic deaths Connecticut is 54 percent higher than the number of murders.

This was true even though the number of traffic fatalities in this state dropped by 100 from 2011 to 2012. (The number of traffic deaths for the state in 2010 was 224, on par with what we saw again in 2012.) State law enforcement officials were quoted recently as saying that the higher traffic death figure was more in line with what we normally expect to see.

Now let’s explore the number of injuries stemming from traffic crashes. In 2008, state transportation officials report there were more than 36,300 injuries attributed to traffic crashes statewide. That same year, uniform crime figures reveal there were 685 rapes, 4,050 robberies, 6,000 aggravated assaults and 500 arson reports. That brings the total number of victims of violent crime in Connecticut that year to about 11,200. That means the number of traffic accident victims was nearly 2.5 times higher than the number of violent crime victims.

Again, this is not to belittle the suffering that violent crime victims endure. But in solely looking at the impact in terms of sheer volume, it’s seems clear where our resources are most needed.

What de Blasio has proposed is a combination of actions that would ultimately slash the number of traffic fatalities to almost zero. Among those measures:

  • Reducing citywide speed limits from 30 miles-per-hour to 25 miles-per-hour;
  • Expanding the red-light camera and speed-tracking camera programs;
  • Bolstering the presence of traffic-enforcing law officers;
  • Placing devices in taxi cabs that would automatically turn off the meter if the driver exceeds the appropriate speed limit.

No similar proposals are pending in Connecticut, but it seems there are a number of areas that we could stand to improve. For starters, the NHTSA reports our statewide in-vehicle restraint use is at 88 percent. There is no reason this shouldn’t be nearer 100 percent. What’s more, fines for those who fail to properly buckle in children are only a maximum of $60. If state legislators place significant value on the lives of our children, this too requires attention.

Beyond that, the percentage of alcohol-related fatalities in Connecticut increased by 13 percent from 2002 to 2011, cited as a factor in 45 percent of traffic deaths in 2011. Authorities need to prioritize this matter immediately with enhanced patrols and more sobriety checkpoints.

A combination of these effort could go a long way in helping us to further drive down the number of traffic deaths.

Contact a Hartford accident attorney today at the Law Offices of Mark E. Salomone & Morelli. Calling 1-800-WIN-WIN-1 for your free case consultation.