Archive for September, 2014

Fall Driver Safety Tips to Prevent Hartford Collisions

Fall brings rapidly changing weather, as well as a change in the clocks.  These and other factors can make fall a dangerous time on the roads. Motorists need to be prepared for the conditions they’ll face when driving in Hartford and should make an effort to follow best safety practices to avoid accidents. If a collision does occur, victims should speak with a personal injury lawyer.

Safe Driving Tips for Fall

The AARP provides some information to motorists on fall driver safety. Drivers should:

  • Be careful of wet leaves on the roads. Wet leaves can lay on the road and become very slippery. If you park your vehicle too close to dry leaves, this can also be dangerous because the catalytic converter on your vehicle could cause the leaves to catch on fire.
  • Remain alert and be aware of the reduced visibility that daylight savings time can cause. Exercise additional caution even on familiar roads after the time change and be on the lookout for pedestrians and cyclists.
  • Check the pressure of your tires. As the weather changes and there are rapid swings from hot to cold weather, this can cause your tires to expand and contract. Check to ensure that the tire treads are not too worn and that the tire’s have the manufacturer-recommended amount of air pressure.
  • Prepare for the glare of the sun. The change in time can alter the morning or late afternoon sun and cause visibility to be impaired as a result of the sun reflecting off of car windows and car hoods. Consider glasses with anti-reflective glare and have sunglasses ready in your vehicle to help you to see better.
  • Be prepared for wet roads. Fall is often a very rainy time and you could be at risk of hydroplaning when water lays on the roads. Remember to slow down when you are in a wet road or when visibility is reduced during a rain storm. You should also check to ensure that your windshield wipers are in good working order and effective at clearing the windshield.

A military safety alert also warns of the potential pitfalls of fall driving, including the risk of unexpected early snow storms as well as the dangers that a frost can present when there is dew on the roads. Fog is also a concern, especially in low places or in areas where there are lots of trees. Drivers should slow down and turn on their low beams or fog lamps.

Fall can also lead to icy conditions. Bridges in Hartford and across Connecticut tend to freeze first before other areas of the roads do and black ice can form even before the dead of winter if the weather becomes unseasonably cold in the fall. The day after the first snowstorm of the year is one of the most dangerous according to Forbes, and you need to be ready in case the snow comes early this year.

Contact a Hartford, CT 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

Drunk Driving Collision Prevention Year-Around Effort in Hartford

Drunk driving has a tremendous cost to individuals and to society. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHSTA) has published a report about the societal costs of impaired driving. A personal injury lawyer knows more than 10,000 people die each year due to impaired driving, and the cost of these losses to the grieving family members left behind is not measurable in dollars. In just the state of Connecticut alone, 85 people lost their lives in 2012 according to Mothers Against Drunk Driving.

Measuring The Costs of Impaired Driving

According to the NHTSA, the direct financial costs of impaired driving totaled at $47 billion in economic loss in 2010. At this amount, this means that the costs of drunk driving were $152 per person in the United States. Once loss of life and lost qualify of life was factored in, the costs of impaired driving reached $195 billion per year.

Each individual person or family affected by an accident has costs to pay. For a minor injury caused by a driver with a blood-alcohol content of .08, the average cost in actual economic loss is $22,000. There are also additional losses associated with impaired quality of life, which reach a total of $25,000.

For individuals who suffer catastrophic injuries as a result of an impaired driving crash, the economic losses from the injuries can reach $1.1 million and loss of quality of life may be as much as $5 million.

The people who face these costs are often innocent victims who did not make the choice to drive drunk. In 35 percent of collisions with impaired drivers, the victims are non-occupants of motor vehicles (like bike riders or walkers) or are either passengers in the drunk driver’s car or other motorists on the road.

Protecting the public and preventing collisions is a top goal for the NHTSA. One recent campaign was organized by the NHTSA and involved more than 10,000 police departments throughout the country. The campaign was called Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over and it ran from August 15 through Labor Day weekend. It included both added enforcement as well as educational efforts like commercials warning the public about drunk driving.

Although the campaign is over now, enforcement efforts have not stopped and drivers need to continue to follow the laws prohibiting impaired driving. It is very clear that driving while impaired significantly increases the risk of collisions. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention summarize the impacts of alcohol on the body, which start with a blood-alcohol concentration of just .02 percent.

At a BAC of .02, you may have impaired judgment, more difficulty multi-tasking and reduced visual function. At a BAC of .05, your small muscle control will not be as good as when you are sober and you will also have impaired judgment and lowered levels of alertness. Difficulty steering your vehicle and a reduced ability to respond in an emergency can occur. All of this happens even before you reach the legal limit of .08. Once you have consumed enough alcohol that your BAC has reached .08, you have myriad problems, including impaired perception, and a reduced ability to control your speed or process information. You are a danger to yourself and others if you have consumed this much alcohol and you could be responsible for causing a collision.

Contact a Hartford, CT 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