December 2015 Archives

Man driving truck in Tracy Morgan crash faces criminal charges

West Virginia residents may recall the June 2014 incident that seriously injured comedian Tracy Morgan and took the life of a man in the same limo bus that he was in. It has been reported that the man who had been driving the Wal-Mart truck that hit the vehicle occupied by Morgan has been charged with various crimes relating to the accident.

Kinks still being worked out in self-driving cars

West Virginia drivers who have heard that self-driving cars are supposed to make the roads much safer may be surprised to learn that these vehicles are currently involved in double the number of accidents than those driven by humans. So far, all the crashes involving driverless vehicles have been caused by human drivers. However, they have occurred because the self-driving cars are unable to make the small intuitive adjustments that a human could make.

Possible underlying cause of TBIs

Recent research into the science behind brain injuries indicates that pressure waves may be a cause of traumatic brain injuries (TBIs). People in West Virginia who have encountered this life-altering injury may find this new research relevant.

New electronic monitor rule to log trucking hours

A rule issued by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration in December 2015 is requiring commercial truckers in West Virginia and around the country to install an electronic device that monitors trucking hours. These monitoring devices must be put into use within two years after the rule goes into effect. A company that has already put a similar electronic device into use which does not meet the requirements of the new rule will be able to continue using it for four more years.

Amateur contact sports could cause brain damage

According to a groundbreaking study, amateur male athletes who participate in contact sports in West Virginia and nationwide are more likely to develop a degenerative brain injury called chronic traumatic encephalopathy, or CTE. The research, which was published in Acta Neuropathological in December 2015, was conducted by Minnesota's Mayo Clinic.

Federal guidelines govern commercial brake usage

The federal government maintains a set of regulations to help ensure that car drivers and passengers in West Virginia and the rest of the nation are traveling alongside compliant and safe commercial truck drivers. The section of the regulatory code that pertains to correct construction, installation and upkeep of parts and accessories clearly outlines the government's expectations of truck drivers as well as their employers.

Truck operators governed by specific safety regulations

Because motorists in West Virginia and other states often share the road with trucks, the federal government publishes specific guidelines for safe truck operation. According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, truckers must maintain certain parts and accessories to operate safely, and the rules include explicit details on judging the suitability of different types of equipment.

Study advocates surgery for some geriatric brain injuries

West Virginia has an aging population, and many people are living to be older than ever before. This means that geriatric medical issues are assuming more and more significance. One of the unfortunate side effects of aging is an increasing propensity towards bad falls, and head injuries are a common result. Because of the extreme trauma inflicted upon the body by brain surgery, the difficulty of recovery and the expense involved, the prognosis on the elderly has not generally been considered good enough to treat the brain injury through neurosurgery. Now researchers in Finland are working to change this practice.

A new collar may reduce concussions

Many West Virginia residents suffer concussion, which are caused by an impact to the head that causes the brain to hit the inside of the skull. This kind of head injury, often associated with contact sports, could lead to complications, such as thinking and memory problems, headaches, low energy and depression. Athletic helmets are designed to reduce lacerations and skull fractures but not concussions.

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