McLaughlin Law Office
Free Consultations. No Obligations.
Local Aggressive In Court For You

Shepherdsville Legal Issues Blog

DUI charges in Kentucky can cost you money and your freedom

Getting charged with driving while under the influence of intoxicants (DUI) in Kentucky can completely change your life. One moment you're happily on your way home and the next, you're getting shoved into the back seat of a police cruiser. It's easy to panic in this kind of situation, but staying calm is in your best interest. So is knowing and standing up for your own rights.

If you believe you were profiled or otherwise treated unfairly, invoke your right to silence and don't speak with law enforcement. Police may try to pressure you into saying something that could get used in court.

Pot use may increase accident risk

Kentucky residents know that it is not legal for people to use marijuana for recreational purposes in their state. However, they also know that this does not necessarily prevent everyone from using the drug. Many people who may want pot to be legalize might assert that it is relatively harmless. But, how harmless can an increase in vehicle accidents really be? An increase in claims is exactly what one research group found in states after pot was legalized for recreational use.

Accident claim records from Washington, Colorado and Oregon were evaluated by the Highway Loss Data Institute over the period of almost five years, starting in January 2012 and lasting through to October 2016. In 2014, both Colorado and Washington legalized marijuana and Oregon followed suit the next year. The study therefore included records from both the pre-legal pot and the post-legal pot dates in these three states. After the legalization, insurance claims for accidents rose 2.7 percent.

Federal rule tries to curb fatigue among truckers

Have you ever been concerned about the long, lonely hours that a commercial truck driver spends on the road and how tired they can become when behind the wheel? If so, you are far from alone as many Kentucky residents share this very understandable concern. Fatigue can be a problem for truckers and that is precisely why the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration has developed very detailed guidelines about when drivers should take breaks and how long they can drive without such breaks.

The rules that attempt to combat trucker fatigue are referred to as the Hours of Service and they vary in part based upon what type of load a particular truck carries. For those rigs transporting property, truckers are capped at working 70 hours over the period of eight straight days or 60 hours over the period of seven straight days. After a break of time off duty that lasts more than 34 hours, a new eight- or seven-day work period can be started.

Fatal accident first of three at one intersection

Kentucky residents who regularly drive certain routes know that there are some streets or intersections that seem more dangerous to them than others. They may make this distinction because of near misses or actual accidents that they themselves have been in or perhaps due to incidents they have witnessed. While it may be true that some locations may experience more accidents than others, the reality is that a crash can happen anywhere at any time.

One particular intersection in Lexington may well start to develop a reputation for being particularly dangerous after it was the location of three separate wrecks in less than 48 hours. The first accident that happened at the corner of Woodland Avenue and East Maxwell Street certainly would be considered the most severe as it resulted in the death of one person. The man who died was 23 years old and may well have caused the accident as his truck reportedly ran into a car that was at a stop for a red light. Authorities believe impairment may have been a factor in the crash.

Reacting to accidents on the freeway

If there were one place that most everyone Shepardsville would likely agree to be the worst place to be involved in an accident, it may the freeway. On city roads, traffic is usually traveling at a slow enough pace so as to easily avoid a collision site. Interstates, on the other hand, tend to have high traffic volumes with nowhere else to go. Indeed, information shared by the U.S. Department of Transportation shows that drivers traveled a collective 20.4 billion miles on Tennessee’s interstates in 2011.

Such high volumes of traffic can make an interstate an extremely dangerous place to be both before and immediately after an accident. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration fatality data shared by the Daily Beast shows five Tennessee corridors ranking among the 100 most deadly sections of interstate in the U.S., with I-55 being among the top 10. After an accident, one’s first impulse is to exit his or her vehicle to inspect whatever damage is done. Traffic safety experts caution against ever doing this on an interstate. Instead, one should signal to the other driver involved to get off the freeway (or at least as far off onto the shoulder as possible) before stopping and exchanging information. If one’s vehicle is inoperable, he or she should stay within it (with his or her seatbelt buckled) until first responders arrive.

Assigning vicarious liability in bus accidents

Most motorists in Shepardsville likely understand the need to share the road with buses, while bus passengers no doubt appreciate the commuting option that such vehicles offer. However, like all large commercial vehicles, buses can present an increased risk of causing extensive damage along with devastating injuries should such vehicles ever be involved in an accident.

Information shared by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration shows that there were 4,311 fatal crashes involving buses and large trucks in 2015 in the U.S. In most cases where a bus is recognized as having caused the accident, the bus driver is the one that most would assume to be liable, both for injuries to the occupants of the vehicles that he or she may have struck as well as to the passengers that he or she was transporting. Yet can liability also extend to the company that employs the driver?

Online buying means more risk of delivery vehicle accidents

In the last two decades, the way Americans shop has changed dramatically. Not so long ago, people were at the mercy of local stores for everything they wanted or needed. If there wasn't an upscale clothing shop nearby, you had to drive to another city or go without. If there was a book you wanted that the local library or the bookstore wouldn't special order for you, you couldn't read it.

These days, those issues are a thing of the past. You can buy just about anything you want with only a few seconds of effort. Online sales have become one of the most lucrative forms of business in modern times.

Wrong-way semi hits vehicle, kills three

Ohio residents should be able to get in their vehicles with their family members and trust that other drivers will operate their vehicles safely and respectfully. While much of the time, this does happen, it is sadly not the experience in all instances. When even just one driver makes a decision that may be dangerous, it can put many other people in harm's way. If an accident happens, it is not just the people who are immediately involved that are affected but their friends, family members and others in the community as well.

Such is the case in a recent incident that took place on a weekday morning along a stress of the Bluegrass Parkway. A semi truck was reportedly travelling the wrong way on the parkway. At the same time, a vehicle carrying two young girls and their grandmother and grandfather were travelling in the correct direction. Unfortunately their path was leading them into direct contact with the wrong-way truck.

Kentucky road fatalities up fourth year running

As distracted driving becomes more of an issue across the country, drivers in Kentucky can also stand to focus more on the road. The State Journal reports that in Kentucky fatalities on the road went up for the fourth year in a row. The data provided by the Kentucky Office of Highway Safety and Kentucky State Police states that between 2015 and 2016 auto-related deaths rose 9.2 percent, and of all of the deaths on roadways this year, nearly a quarter of them were due to distracted driving, although it does not state which were related directly to smartphone usage.

Using smartphones while driving can have very dire consequences, and reports state that 11 teens die each day due to distracted driving because of smartphones. Experts say that texting while driving is worse than driving under the influence--the likelihood of an accident is six times more when the driver is texting. It is also illegal. Kentucky minors are not allowed to use their cell phones at all while driving, even in hands-free mode, and texting while driving is against the law for everyone.

Kentucky highway fatalities rose in 2016

Highways in Kentucky were more dangerous in 2016, according to WCPO, with an increase of 9.6 percent in fatalities over 2015. These numbers come from the Kentucky Office of Highway Safety and the Kentucky State Police, who tallied the number of highway deaths in 2016 at 834, which is 73 more than were recorded in 2015. More than half of the deaths we in crashes where the deceased was not wearing a seatbelt. Motorcyclists were 90 of the fatalities, with 60 percent of those riders not wearing helmets.

Impaired or distracted driving accounted for nearly 40 percent of the deaths, with alcohol-related crashes causing 16.8 percent of fatalities and distracted driving accounting for 23 percent of the deaths. Speeding or other aggressive driving were involved in more than 36 percent of the fatalities on Kentucky highways.