Cyclists Receive Huge Cash Settlements

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The city of San Diego will pay one local cyclist a whopping $4.85 million following an early settlement in March of 2017. The settlement is one of the largest ever paid to a cyclist in the state after Clifford Brown was injured as a result to the Southern California city’s poorly maintained sidewalks.

How did it Happen?

On a normal San Diego day in 2014, Brown was simply cycling to visit a friend. Suddenly, he was thrown from his bike when he hit a tree root that had grown under the sidewalk and fractured the pavement.

In the fall that sent Brown 28 feet from where he made contact with the tree root, the cyclist tore ligaments in his spinal cord. He also sustained cuts, bruises and lost several teeth. When Brown landed on his head, doctors believed he may have had a stroke as well.

In all, the injuries led to a month-long stay in the hospital, 60 days of rehabilitation and constant in-home care that lasts to this day.

Who was Liable?

Brown’s attorney argued that the city was responsible for the cyclist’s injuries due its cuts in sidewalk maintenance. The city of San Diego agreed to the settlement before going to trial as the amount due to Brown could have been considerably more if a jury was involved.

Los Angeles Cyclist Killed

In early May, Los Angeles City council agreed to a settlement of its own after a man was killed in Eagle Rock. Edgardo Gabat was riding with a cycling group when he hit uneven pavement and was sent flying off his bike in 2014.

Like San Diego, the city was sued for not maintaining its sidewalks. The area that Gabat had been riding in was labeled as “bicycle friendly,” but it was anything but safe on the night of his death. Gabat’s fall was so brutal that the helmet he was wearing was not enough to absorb the impact of the pavement on the back of his head.

LA is said to have a number of deteriorated streets that have been forgotten about by the city council. These streets are now injury and wrongful death traps waiting to claim more victims.

Cyclist Deaths and Injuries

According to WeLoveCycling.com, California ranks as seventh in the United States in cyclist deaths. Every day, millions of Californians cycle to work, school or to see friends, yet some of the state’s roadways are far from safe due to poor maintenance. To improve these cities for cyclists, joggers, and walkers, it may take more large personal injury lawsuit settlements for changes to be made.

Flahavan Law Offices | Westlake Village Bicycle Attorney

If you or a loved one has experienced an injury from a cycling accident, contact Flahavan Law Offices. Flahavan Law Offices specializes in personal injury law and can give you advice on the compensation you deserve. Visit our homepage or contact us directly. Flahavan Law Offices is here to help with all your personal injury law needs.

Self-Driving Vehicles Leave Liability in Murky Area

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Fads come and go, but one that the world seems set on exploring further is self-driving vehicles. For decades, the idea of a self-driving automobile seemed like science fiction. However, the new fad is a reality that is being tested around the United States. In fact, California has moved to allow tests and change regulations on fully self-driving vehicles in 2017, according to CNN. By early 2018, the state could have fully self-driving vehicles on its roads.

Rush to Adopt Self-Driving Vehicles

Although the technology is still being developed, many experts feel like there is a rush to adopt self-driving cars and get them out to the public. In the end, this rush of automated driving could be detrimental to the health and safety of other drivers, passengers, and pedestrians.

There is no doubt that California’s roads could be the safest in the country if the technology in self-driving cars is 100% perfect. If each automobile had self-driving capabilities, the days of auto accidents could be a thing of the past. With the rush to adopt, though, problems can occur, especially with the technology being so new. According to Vice’s MotherBoard website, California has seen 18 auto accidents since 2016 from self-driving vehicles.

Accidents

One of the most interesting aspects of self-driving vehicles lies in whose fault it is when there is an accident. One consumer safety group wants to hold the automakers producing the cars liable for any accident involving a self-driving vehicle, according to The Detroit News.

Due to the automakers creating the software in the vehicles, making the auto companies liable for an accident is considered the right thing to do by many. If auto companies were held responsible, the amount of compensation each would pay out in personal injury claims could be astronomical. It could put some automakers in serious financial trouble.

There is still plenty of debate needed to clear up the murky waters that surround liability in the case of self-driving vehicle accidents.

Dangers of Self-Driving Automobiles

There are plenty of dangers associated with self-driving automobiles that worry consumer groups and drivers. One danger produced by self-driving vehicles is that passengers gain a false sense of security. Reports indicate that drivers using a semi self-driving vehicle that encounters danger take around 17 seconds to react.

Another danger involves the vehicle’s computer system, which can be hacked by savvy computer users. In late 2016, it was reported that Tesla’s Model S was hacked by a group of Chinese researchers. The hack was completed from 12 miles away and allowed the researchers to control aspects of the car’s performance.

The computer in a self-driving vehicle could also malfunction. A malfunction could take passengers to the wrong destination or misread traffic. Regardless, dangerous accidents could occur.

California could have fully functioning, self-driving vehicles on the state’s roads soon. Accidents and injuries could result in the early years of adopting the technology. If you are injured by a self-driving auto accident, hiring an experienced personal injury attorney is important in getting you the compensation you deserve.

Flahavan Law Offices | Westlake Village Injury Attorneys

If you or a loved one has experienced an injury from an auto accident, contact Flahavan Law Offices. Flahavan Law Offices specializes in personal injury law and can give you advice on the compensation you deserve. Visit our homepage or contact us directly. Flahavan Law Offices is here to help with all your personal injury law needs.