Articles Posted in Knowledge & Statistics

The latest edition of the Model Minimum Uniform Crash Criteria has a new section instructing how to report on the newly emerging autonomous automobiles.

Administrators from all sectors of the automotive and technology fields, as well as government officials, are actively preparing for the very-near future of self-driving cars. The Governors Highway Safety Association, along with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), have just released the Model Minimum Uniform Crash Criteria, which is the criteria by which law enforcement and other agencies report car accident data. The fifth edition is the first to include instructions on reporting crashes involving autonomous vehicles. It is updated every five years.

Many American drivers are not aware of how soon we will be seeing self-driving cars on our roads with regularity. More companies are announcing their intent to develop these cars every year. It is estimated the United States will have several thousand self-driving vehicles on the streets by 2020. The number goes up to 4.5 million by 2035.

A new study shows Sacramento drivers are the worst out of all 75 of the most populated urban areas in the country. Drivers in Detroit and Orlando, Florida are the best. Salt Lake City, Utah has the second worst drivers in the country behind Sacramento. Two million nationwide data points were studied throughout 2016 to find these results. Incident counts for all 75 inner city areas were weighted against the occurrence percentages. Traffic citations, DUI’s, speeding tickets and number of accidents were all calculated to find the final rankings.

Sacramento earned its distinguished title of worst drivers in the country because it also has the highest rate of traffic citations in the nation. QuoteWizard Insurance, the agency reporting the study results suggested Sacramentans consider traveling the cities many waterways to work as an option to its dangerous streets. Besides Sacramento, Fresno, Riverside, San Diego and Los Angeles were also among the nation’s worst drivers.

A sevenfold increase in opioid-related car crash deaths has recently been reported by researchers. Yet another sure sign the U.S. opioid epidemic is deadlier than ever. More drivers than ever before are dying in crashes while under the influence of prescription painkillers. Columbia University researchers released a statement discussing how prescriptions for opioids like morphine, hydrocodone, and oxycodone have more than quadrupled in recent years. Seventy-six million were reported in 1991 compared to the 300 million in 2014.

With numbers soaring to such heights, it isn’t surprising we are beginning to see a connection to highway deaths. The increase in drivers testing positive for prescription opioids has become a public health concern in 2017. These types of drugs are used to kill pain from serious injury. Their effects include slowed reaction times, impaired cognitive skills, and drowsiness. All things that add a significant risk while driving. While it’s true that these prescription painkiller users are driving under the influence with more regularity than ever before, researchers say they still need to do more research before any clear facts are established.

This rising epidemic has caught the eye of more than one activist organization, including MADD or Mothers Against Drunk Driving. They have voiced their concerns over the lack of reliable testing for opioids on the road and committed themselves to fighting the problem along with all impairing drugs.

According to the Sacramento Bee, more dog bites happen in North Sacramento than anywhere else in the city, citing 2,800 bite reports, many of which required hospital treatment, between 2012 and 2017. Of the twenty-three zip codes in the area, 95815 and 95838 reported the most dog bites, 647 total. One-fourth of all dog bite reports in the city. These two zip codes cover the area from American River to the city boundary in the north and from the east boundary to Steelhead Creek. City groups such as the Del Paso Heights Community Association confronted city officials about the dog bite problem in North Sacramento only to be told there was nothing they could do about it and there was not adequate funding for animal control in the city.

Gina Knepp, the manager of Front Street Shelter and person responsible for the city’s animal control, is quoted as saying proactive measures are limited because there are only six animal control employees and never more than two on duty at the same time. A backlog of more than 270 dog bite complaints existed earlier this year.

A report from the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals in 2013 showed that when crime and social disease are a part of the community, there are also problems with animal control. In the report, impounded animals at SPCA shelters and those by the city and county of Sacramento were investigated and the highest concentrations were found in Del Paso Heights and Oak Park. The information from the report was combined with a map of the city’s worst areas for building code violations. The most dog bite problems happen in the areas with poor housing maintenance and code violations. There tends to be less fenced in areas and more dogs roaming free on the streets.

Many drivers do not fully understand what huge impact car accidents have on the cost of their insurance. It is easy to understand why your own wrecks increase your rates, but harder to comprehend the correlation of the nation’s crash rate and insurance costs. What’s more, there are specific types of car accidents that happen more often than others and make the biggest impact on car insurance costs. Not only do your own accidents influence your car insurance rates, but those in the community around you, especially if they are one of these five specific types.

Five Most Common Types of Car Accidents in the United States

While the specific circumstances will vary, there are five different types of accidents that happen repeatedly in the United States. A large majority of these accidents are minor and end up in nothing more than a few dents and bruises. Unfortunately, a smaller percentage end tragically in a death or with serious and life-altering injury. Any accident can be deadly. The five most common types of car accidents are:

Teen drivers are already at a higher risk of car accident than other age groups of drivers, but those with ADHD, or attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, are 36% more likely than other adolescent drivers to have an accident. This information comes from a recent study from JAMA Pediatrics, although latter studies have shown even higher percentages. Some stating teens with ADHD are as much as four times more likely than their peers to wreck.

The new study was able to use larger samples of teens and rely on more efficient reporting styles than older studies, making it more dependable. Information was compiled using 18,500 electronic health records for minors from six New Jersey primary care facilities. Almost 2500 had ADHD. Although this risk is substantial, the study shows it is manageable.

A chronic condition, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, manifests itself with symptoms of hyperactivity and impulse control issues. They have substantial complications sustaining concentration and focus. These symptoms while driving can impair the driver in much the same way as if they were intoxicated. Long-distance driving is particularly risky for people with ADHD because they become easily distracted. Distracted driving is illegal and consists of anything that takes the drivers attention from the task of driving. Examples include texting, talking on the phone, tuning the radio and talking with passengers. An interesting fact that came out of the study is that most teens with ADHD do not get their licenses until they are older.

The Amtrak passenger train crash of September 2008 was devastating for crash victims and their families. Emergency vehicles that were the first on the scene described at as both despairing and devastating, and victims of that crash are still recovering and fighting lawsuits to this day.

Their next challenge will be up against damage caps. According to Congress, there will be a limit on the total amount of damages that can be paid to passengers. The limit is $200 million, which may seem like a lot, but victims of that horrific crash don’t agree. So far, that number has not come close to compensating the number of people who were injured in that wreck.

The crash itself was one of the worst in the state of California. On September 12, 2008, an Amtrak train was heading north of the downtown area of Los Angeles when the driver, who was texting at the time, ran a red light. By running the light, the passenger train ran directly into a Union Pacific freight train. The collision resulted in 25 death and another 100 injured passengers. To this day, this wreck was one of the worst in U.S. history.

After years of trying to fix the healthcare system with the Californian prisons, it seems that things may finally be looking up, at least for state prisons. According to reports from “PolitiCal,” a section of the Los Angeles Times, contract prisons, which are known for taking on the overflow of inmates, have not seen the same improvements in the healthcare system just yet. J. Clark Kelso, the federal receiver who was appointed by the courts, has filed his most recent report, and though they show some optimism, it’s clear that there’s a long way to go.

The problems of the prison healthcare system first came to light back in 2006. U.S. District Judge Thelton Henderson insisted that prison healthcare reform was greatly needed after it was officially determined that one inmate per week was dying because of medical malpractice. Henderson put together a comprehensive plan that would work towards ending these oversights, pointing out improvements that had occurred over nine years.

Kelso also concluded that improvements had been made. For example, the state had doubled the annual budget for prison health, and the population of prisons has decreased by about 40,000 inmates. His report also showed that the prisons had a solid medical staff on hand, and the processes that led to patients being diagnosed and treated were running smoothly. The prisons had also instated a process that would catch oversights in the prison healthcare system especially when inmates received poor care,

When a patient checks into the ER, most of the time they are sick or in a lot of pain. Their minds might not be as sharp as usual, and they might have other things to worry about than signing release forms. These forms, however, may become the center of a lawsuit that could come to trial in the near future.

A California hospital’s liability is at the center of this release form lawsuit. In August 2008, Dean Whitlow awoke to hear his mother screaming uncontrollably. She claimed to be having the worst headache of her life. She was in such agony and Whitlow decided there was nothing to do but take her to the emergency room. On the way, she vomited in the car, and when they got to the waiting room at Rideout Memorial Hospital, she vomited again.

According to court documents, her pain ranked at a 6 out of 10, but would periodically spike to 10 out of 10. When the hospital staff asked her to sign a “Conditions Admissions” form, but her son insisted that she was so overwhelmed with the pain and nausea and she was crying uncontrollably. There was no way for her to be able to consent to these forms or even read them. Whitlow also stated that no one on the hospital staff ever read the statements to her in order to help her out.

Have you ever driven past an accident on the side of a highway and thought, “What in the world happened?” Sometimes it’s not easy to actually tell what happened at the scene of an accident, especially when you only have a few seconds to assess the scene before you drive right by.

car crashNow you may not have to wonder about these accidents any longer. The Auto Insurance Center, an information and news site dedicated to keeping up with the latest in car insurance news, began researching the answer to that very question. The center combed through records in the United States from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s Fatal Accident Reporting System, which has been keeping records on every serious and fatal car crash in the United States from 2009 to 2013.

The data itself showcased the number of pedestrian, driver, and passenger deaths that resulted from those accidents. When the center finished compiling their information, that made a color-coded map to show which fatal accident was the most common in each state. The map included nine colors:

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