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Seattle Personal Injury Law Blog

What to do if a dangerous dog lives near you

Most of the time, dogs are friendly pets. They are called man's best friend, after all. 

However, some dogs are more aggressive than others, even when they do not feel threatened. By law, dog owners of consistently aggressive dogs must register their dog to provide public information that their dog is dangerous. Many families across Washington might not even be aware that they live near a dangerous dog, but there are ways they can stay safe.

Snapping selfies while behind the wheel

There is no question that drivers who use their cellphones to make calls, text, map out directions or compose an email while behind the wheel put people in danger. In 2017 alone, more than 3,100 people were killed in distracted driving accidents, and thousands more were injured in similar collisions. Surprisingly, motorists have taken the danger a step further by snapping selfies while driving and then posting them on social media sites. 

There are three main types of distractions: cognitive, manual and visual. When drivers attempt to take a selfie, they must take their hands off the steering wheel, which is a manual distraction. As they take their eyes off the road and focus on posing for a pic, posting or writing comments, drivers are visually distracted. Once the picture is taken, drivers may go even further to create a social media post for their selfie and write a caption. All of these tasks combine to take the drivers’ focus off of the road. Drivers who are cognitively distracted are less likely to respond to hazards, such as objects in the road, traffic lights, pedestrian crosswalks, bad weather conditions and other motorists.

Exactly how dangerous are Seattle drivers?

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Statistically, Seattle does not have safe drivers. Whether that is because of poorly-maintained roads, decreased visibility or distraction, many people suffer.

No matter what type of vehicle you drive, you may forget that you take people's lives into your hands when you shift into gear. And in many cases, other drivers are not the ones who suffer.

How can you avoid distracted driving?

Like many Washington residents, your life is busy and requires constant multitasking and often running from one place to another. While you try to maximize every minute, when you are behind the wheel of a car it is vital to maintain focus on the road and your surroundings at all times. This helps ensure your safety, as well as the safety of those around you. Luckily, there are many ways you can avoid being a distracted driver.

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, or NHTSA, distracted driving was responsible for 3,166 deaths in the year 2017 alone. Distracted driving includes many different behaviors that drivers engage in when behind the wheel of an automobile. It is crucial that you remain mindful of the various activities you must refrain from while operating your car. 

Erb’s palsy: causes, risk factors and treatment

As an expectant Washington mother, you may have heard that you should “expect the unexpected” when raising children, but when it comes to your delivery, itself, you are probably hoping for a smooth, predictable process. Unfortunately, though, some deliveries are far more difficult than others, and in some cases, difficult deliveries can lead to long-term complications. At Elk & Elk Co., Ltd., we understand that difficult deliveries can lead to a number of serious medical conditions, among them Erb’s palsy. We also recognize that this and a number of other conditions caused by tough deliveries can, in some instances, leave you and your child facing a lifetime of hardship.

According to the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons, Erb’s palsy, or brachial plexus birth palsy, as it is also known, is a nerve condition that affects one or two out of every 1,000 babies born. In most cases, it results from a physician stretching an infant’s neck to one side during the delivery process. While the severity of Erb’s palsy can vary, many affected infants will experience immobility to some degree.

New study reports medication errors cause more harm than you think

Every medical professional has a duty to provide the best possible care to each patient they see. Unfortunately, medical errors are still common in hospitals and care centers across the country. 

According to NBC News, nearly one in ten patients suffer complications or severe injuries because of preventable medical errors. And NBC cites a recent study which determined that a large portion of those errors involve medication or treatment mistakes. 

School buses deserve your full attention

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The end of summer is an exciting time of year, as parents send their kids back to school. But along with the excitement of purchasing new clothes, the possibility of making new friends and worrying about inevitable scheduling changes, you might feel a little stressed out about how the school year will go.

Mornings can seem especially hurried, as you scramble to get the kids ready and out the door. But as you begin your morning commute to the office, you should prepare to drive safely around buses.

Medical errors the nation’s third-most-common cause of death

When you feel unwell and are not sure why, you probably schedule a visit with your Washington doctor so he or she can determine the problem and tell you how you can fix it. Regrettably, though, today’s doctors and physicians are not immune to making mistakes, and there are numerous areas in which they can potentially make errors. At Elk & Elk, we recognize that some doctor errors can mean the difference between you fully recovering and potentially losing your life, and we also recognize that doctor errors have become alarmingly common across the United States.

Medical mistakes have become so commonplace in recent years, per CNBC, that they are now the third-most-common cause of death among Americans, with only heart disease and cancer claiming more lives. Just how many serious medical errors are U.S. doctors making on an annual basis?

What's a few more seconds worth?

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Have you ever noticed how hurried drivers are? Not you, but others...right?

Chances are, you know exactly how it is. You hit snooze too many times, grab your coffee and rush out the door, only to find I-5 at a standstill. You probably get upset about how nobody can drive or wonder why people are going so slowly. You might even try to give "hints" to the driver in front of you by following them closely, hoping they will pull over and let you get ahead. But is that really worth it?

Lack of bike lanes increasing risk for cyclists

Many cyclists across the city protested the redesigning of Seattle's 35th Avenue NE. They claim that the new design only leaves cyclists more vulnerable to serious accidents. And it seems those concerns are valid, especially after recent accidents that left a bicyclist seriously injured and a motorcyclist dead. 

The Seattle Department of Transportation (SDOT) maintains that the redesign is not the issue in these accidents, but many cyclists disagree.

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