Massachusetts Legal Blog
The dramatic increase in e-commerce that occurred with the pandemic and other factors have contributed to a significant increase in commercial truck traffic. With more semi tractor-trailers on the roads today, truck accidents are on the rise in Massachusetts and throughout the nation. In 2020, as reported by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA):
In a collision involving a passenger vehicle and a big rig, occupants of the passenger vehicle are likely to suffer serious injuries. The average passenger vehicle weighs 4,000 pounds, while a fully loaded 18-wheeler can weigh 80,000 pounds or more. When a crash is caused by the trucker or trucking company, black box data can be used as evidence in a claim for compensation brought by injured victims or their families. Most big rigs have some type of black box.
Winter is beautiful in Massachusetts and New England, with falling snow, quiet beaches, snow-covered parks, and endless opportunities for winter sports, such as skating, skiing, and snowshoeing. On the downside, winter weather makes the roads more dangerous. Although often overlooked, parking lots are also more hazardous during the winter months.
Every day is the U.S., 29 people are killed in motor vehicle crashes involving a drunk driver, according to CDC. That amounts to one death every 50 minutes. Alcohol-impaired fatalities involving drivers with blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of .08% or higher accounted for 30% of all traffic deaths nationwide in 2020, as stated by the National Safety Council (NSC). Among traffic fatalities in 2020, the following had a BAC of .08% or greater, as reported by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS):
Bostonians love to complain about traffic and road conditions. We also like to complain about the Red Sox and a lot of other things. But is the traffic in Boston really that bad compared other big cities? The answer is yes, according to various sources. Our roads are in poor shape and our traffic is really slow.
A combination of historical, political, and geographic factors makes Boston a nightmare for commuters who spend way too much time waiting in traffic every year. This creates an atmosphere where cranky drivers are constantly insulting one another and cutting other drivers off in their fruitless attempt to save a little bit of time.
Under dram shop laws, people who serve alcoholic beverages at bars, restaurants, and other business establishments in Massachusetts have a responsibility to carefully monitor the behavior of their patrons for signs of intoxication.
When a bar fails to stop serving someone who is clearly drunk, or if they neglect to check the ID of a patron who is underage, and the person they serve goes on to harm someone else in an automobile accident, the victim and their family have the right to sue the bar and its employees for damages.
Not only are trampolines a great way to stay in shape, but also no matter what age you are, they are a source of fun. Trampolines can be a great activity to get the kids out of the house and into nature for some fresh air, as well as a great bonding activity between parents and children.
However, with this great fun comes great risk. Research shows that 90% of trampoline injuries are sustained by children between the ages of 5 and 14. Over half of these injuries are sustained when two or more children are jumping on the trampoline at the same time.
Between August 1, 1953 and December 31, 1987, over one million people who lived, worked, or served at Camp Lejeune in North Carolina were exposed to toxic chemicals that are known to cause cancer, birth defects, and other diseases.
Recent legislation passed by Congress and signed on August 8, 2022 allows victims and their families to seek legal damages for death and injuries resulting from the contaminated groundwater.
When it comes to dog bites, Massachusetts is a strict liability state. That means the dog’s owner is responsible to for any harm the dog does to people or property, and the victim does not have to prove negligence to receive compensation.
If a dog is declared to be a “dangerous dog” by the local authority, Massachusetts law allows the authority to require the dog’s owner to take steps to prevent the dog from harming someone in the future. In rare cases, dogs that have killed or seriously harmed people or other animals are euthanized in Massachusetts, but dog owners have the right to appeal the decision.
Recent legislation passed by Congress requires automakers to develop technology that will identify drunk drivers and stop them from driving.
It will take a few years to devise and implement this new technology, but soon we could be seeing cars that automatically shut down if they detect signs that the driver is under the influence.