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Jackson Personal Injury Blog

Proper safety precautions for driving on wintry roads

Changes in winter weather patterns have meant that even drivers in Mississippi need to be concerned about winter driving. Winter driving brings unique dangers because icy winter conditions can appear out of nowhere. Modern vehicles have been equipped with traction control and other safety features to protect drivers, passengers and pedestrians from unforeseen occurrences that can take place during the winter.

During the winter months, it is best to allow the vehicle to warm up before driving it. Avoid leaving a vehicle running inside an enclosed area as this puts one at risk for carbon monoxide poisoning. It is prudent for a person to leave his or her travel route with someone if he or she is planning on traveling on a day when inclement weather has been predicted. If an accident should occur, or if a driver finds him or herself stranded in an unfamiliar area during the winter, it's best for him or her to light flares around the vehicle and then stay inside it until help arrives.

Program for truck drivers emphasizes safety

Truck accidents are a common causes of injuries and deaths in Mississippi. A program in Florida is teaching truckers to drive more safely in an effort to prevent trucking accidents.

The program comes after a 45-car multi-vehicle accident in the area that resulted in up to 12 people being hospitalized. CDL instructors advise other drivers that they should always look out for semi-trucks since they often weigh 80,000 pounds and take 200 yards to come to a complete stop.

Police reports give incomplete data on causes of car crashes

The National Safety Council has released a report called "Undercounted is Underinvested: How Incomplete Crash Reports Impact Efforts to Save Lives." The results are startling: No state has fields or codes for the police to record all the possible factors in car crashes. Referring to various government and traffic safety organizations, the NSC identified 23 crash factors. Mississippi residents will want to know which states fare the best.

Kansas and Wisconsin came in first by capturing 14 of the 23 critical factors, followed by Maryland, Kentucky and Nebraska, which captured only five. All states lack fields for reporting driver fatigue and the use of advanced driver assistance technologies. Concerning the use of infotainment systems, only three states have fields for police to report it.

What people should know about the Mississippi ombudsman program

Like other states across the nation, Mississippi has its own laws regarding long-term care ombudsman programs in addition to the requirements of federal law. An ombudsman is a representative and advocate for residents in facilities providing various levels of care for seniors and the elderly.

All the following types of facilities require licensure and regulation from the State Department of Health and are included in the ombudsman program:

  • Extended care homes
  • Skilled nursing facilities
  • Intermediate care facilities
  • Boarding homes
  • Personal care homes

The dangers that drivers face at night

Mississippi residents should know that the risk for a fatal car crash triples at night, according to the National Safety Council. The following are just a few reasons why driving at night is more dangerous than driving at any other time of day, and they are worth keeping in mind as drivers adapt to the end of Daylight Saving Time.

The night compromises a driver's depth perception, color identification and peripheral vision. Furthermore, night vision will diminish with age, so older drivers may need more light on the road than younger drivers. While high-beam headlights can reach about 500 feet in front of a vehicle, a speeding driver will still have lowered reaction times at night.

How drivers can protect themselves in bright sunlight

Bright sunlight is a danger to drivers in Mississippi, as in every other state, because it can create visual illusions, temporarily blind drivers and slow their reaction times. Drivers are actually 16 percent more at risk for a fatal accident when traveling in bright sunlight than in normal weather. By following the tips given below, they can reduce that risk.

Sunglasses are essential because they cut down on the brightness of the sun and protect the eyes from its harmful UV rays. Drivers can buy a stylish pair and keep them in the car. Another good protective measure is using the sun visors. These do not hinder visibility; they are designed not to do so.

How to end distracted driving among truck drivers

Drivers in Mississippi and elsewhere are more distracted by their cell phones than ever before, according to a recent study by AAA. While the thought of a distracted driver behind the wheel of a passenger vehicle is scary enough, the notion of a distracted truck driver operating a 26,000-pound vehicle is downright terrifying.

The AAA study found that distracted driving is now the biggest danger to all people on the road. It also found that 88 percent of Americans believe that distracted driving is getting worse. In comparison, only 45 percent are concerned about drunk driving, a mere 33 percent are concerned about drugged driving and just 20 percent are concerned about aggressive driving.

For-profit nursing homes more likely to be neglectful

Families in Mississippi may be concerned about the standard of care their elderly parents and other loved ones are receiving in nursing homes. Reports of nursing home neglect and abuse can send chills up the spines of even the most dedicated family members who have thoroughly researched their elderly relatives' care providers. According to one study, residents in for-profit nursing homes are almost twice as likely to have health problems as a result of negligent or substandard care than those living in nonprofit facilities or community homes.

Researchers at the University of Illinois at Chicago found that the best health outcomes were found among adults aged 60 and older who lived in the community. They may need assistance with daily living tasks but continue to live in a community home rather than in an institutional nursing facility. However, the most serious signs of nursing home neglect were found among residents of for-profit nursing institutions. In some cases, researchers found severe dehydration in people with feeding tubes, people with severe bed sores and others with broken catheters or feeding tubes.

Nursing home abuses impact our most vulnerable citizens

Reports of neglect in Mississippi nursing homes and throughout the country are increasing at an alarming rate. Investigations of these incidents typically reveal the problems to be due to understaffing, a lack of training provided to the staff or a combination of both. Far more pernicious is the rise of intentional abuse inflicted on the elderly residents by their caretakers.

Numerous studies report that elder abuse primarily manifests itself in one of two ways. Physical abuse is the more obvious one, involving battery or assault. The signs can be unexplained broken bones, bruises, cuts, welts or burn marks as examples. Less apparent is emotional or psychological abuse, which can be verbal or non-verbal.

Falls are the leading cause of fatal injury among older Americans

Leaving a loved one in the care of a Mississippi nursing home or assisted living facility is rarely easy. However, it can prove less emotionally taxing if you have complete faith that the facility and its staff members do everything they can to protect residents from harm. Unfortunately, however, this is not always the case, and many American nursing homes have issues relating to understaffing, insufficient training and so on. Additionally, many nursing homes drop the ball when it comes to protecting residents from falls, which are one of the biggest health and wellness-related issues commonly experienced by today’s seniors.

According to the National Council on Aging, falls have become so prevalent among Americans ages 65 and over that they are now the single most common cause of fatal and non-fatal injuries and hospital admissions among people within this age group. Additionally, falls by older Americans lead to more than 800,000 hospitalizations, more than 2.8 million injuries and more than 27,000 deaths every year.

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