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July 2018 Archives

Risky behaviors can increase the risk of an accident

West Virginia residents and others who drive while impaired, while drowsy or while distracted increase their risk of getting into an accident. According to the CDC, more than 32,000 people are killed because of motor vehicle accidents. Another two million are injured in such incidents. If a person is tired while behind the wheel, that driver should pull over and take a quick nap. Opening windows or talking with passengers may also help keep a driver awake and alert.

Data on 2014-2016 car models shows which cause most injuries

West Virginia drivers who own a more recent vehicle probably benefit from various safety features like collision avoidance systems and automatic emergency braking. However, accidents are possible so long as there is the human factor behind the wheel. Not only that, but some vehicle models are inherently safer than others, according to the Highway Loss Data Institute.

Truck accidents increase as distance from rest stops grow

West Virginia residents may be aware that many commercial vehicle accidents are caused by distracted driving. However, fatigue may also be a major factor that could result in accidents. Further, the location of rest stops could also have an impact on where fatigue-related accidents are more likely to occur.

FMCSA announces plans to revise CSA program

Trucking companies in West Virginia and around the country were likely pleased when Congress passed the Fixing America's Surface Transportation Act. In addition to earmarking funds to improve the nation's road system, the 2015 bill required the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration to revise its Compliance, Safety and Accountability program. The program, which assigns carriers safety scores based on a number of criteria, was criticized by trade groups for using incomplete data and providing the public with misleading information.

The accident risk factors the public should know about

According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, 69 percent of victims in accidents involving passenger vehicles and large trucks were in the passenger vehicle. Only 16 percent of victims of accidents involving large trucks and passenger vehicles were in the truck when the collision occurred. There are many reasons why a truck accident could occur on a West Virginia road.

Lipid biomarker could help doctors diagnose brain injuries

West Virginia doctors may someday be able to use a lipid biomarker to diagnose brain injuries in patients. A new preclinical study shows that a lipid called lysophosphatidic acid, or LPA, sharply increases after the body suffers a traumatic brain injury, or TBI. The study, which was conducted by researchers at the University of California, Los Angeles, was published in The American Journal of Pathology.

The states where work vehicle drivers are safest

West Virginia residents who drive trucks or other work vehicles may be interested in the data gathered by Verizon Connect, a fleet management systems provider, as to what states are safest for people in their industry. Verizon Connect analyzed the behavior of drivers from more than 6,200 of its fleet customers, all of them small or mid-size businesses, between October 2015 and September 2017.

Increased serum levels after head impacts

A West Virginia resident who has suffered a high-acceleration head impact may have elevated levels of two different types of serums in their body. These serums, tau and ubiquitin C-terminal hydrolase L1, are biomarkers of traumatic brain injuries and may be present even if there has been no diagnosis of a concussion. This finding is a result of a study recently conducted by researchers at the University of Michigan.

Potential issues with younger commercial drivers

Some West Virginia residents may have heard of a bill that has been introduced in Congress that would allow people as young as 18 to train as commercial drivers. Although it is known as the DRIVE-Safe Act, some people have reservations about just how safe it will be.

Report predicts gradual effect of driverless cars on insurance

West Virginia residents may be familiar with some of the predictions that have been made about the future of auto insurance in an age of driverless cars. A 2016 Morgan Stanley report predicts a sudden decline for the industry, estimating that by 2040, it will contract to 20 percent of its current size. However, new research predicts a different outcome.

Slip and falls: what they involve for small businesses

Small business owners in West Virginia probably know that maintaining a safe environment for customers and employees isn't cheap. To start with, premises liability insurance can cost $500 or more each year depending on business type and size. Owners must also spend money on routine maintenance and repairs, employee training and signage to warn others about safety hazards. If business owners face a claim, they then have to pay for a legal defense.

Study reveals potential role of microglia in TBI cases

A new study conducted by researchers at the University of Virginia School of Medicine may be of interest to anyone in West Virginia who has suffered a traumatic brain injury or spinal cord injury. Researchers discovered that microglia, which are certain cells that reside permanently in the central nervous system, have an important role in clearing up dead and dying cells in the brain.

CVSA announces Brake Safety Week dates

Thousands of road users in West Virginia and around the country are injured or killed every year in accidents involving tractor-trailers, and many of these crashes are caused by trucks with poorly maintained or defective braking systems. Efforts to address this problem include the Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance's Brake Safety Week, which is scheduled to commence on Sept. 16. During the weeklong safety initiative, trucks will be subjected to rigorous Level I inspections and will be ordered out of service if inspectors discover barking or other safety issues that place other road users in danger.

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