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Motorcyclist approaches an intersection between a driver.Cars and motorcycles must share the same road. It is your responsibility as the driver to look out for each other. You must learn to share the road and drive responsibly. Driving a motorcycle, however, places you at risk for more serious injuries because your entire body will absorb the impact from any form of collision.

Even if you wear proper gear, from helmets to a Kevlar vest, you can still face major injuries because a motorcycle leaves you exposed. Sadly, other drivers may fail to see motorcycles because they are smaller. On top of that, others engage in reckless behavior such as DUI or distracted driving.

A collision between a car and a motorcycle running at high speeds usually results in a catastrophe. If you find yourself in this situation because of another driver’s negligence, consider contacting a reputable accident attorney to help you find justice. Learn more about the most common causes of crashes between a car and motorcycle; and what you can do to mitigate it.

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Ebikes, also known as EAPCs- electronically assisted pedal cycles, have become very popular over the past 10 years. The Industry is exploding with new models and new users.  In Massachusetts bikes fall into the Ebike category if they are motorized but the motors have a maximum speed of twenty-five mile per hour. Massachusetts restricts use of these bikes to people who are sixteen or above.  Operators of Ebikes must have an operator’s license and an  Ebike may require registration depending on its maximum speed. All riders must be helmeted.  Insurance is not required.  Ebikes may not be ridden on bike paths in Massachusetts.

For certain insurance purposes, Ebikes are treated differently than ordinary bicycles. As an example, whereas riders of bicycles who are hit by a car or truck are entitled to personal injury protection benefits which cover medical bills and lost earnings.

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How to write a demand letter.A demand letter is a formal notification. It tells a service provider, merchant, insurance company, or business that an aggrieved party intends to pursue legal action and take them to court over an alleged unfair treatment or erroneous trade practice.

This letter can be written as a precursor to filing a lawsuit. It can also act as an effective document to help you resolve legal issues without undergoing litigation. Everyone knows the latter is costly, long, drawn-out, and stressful.

In many instances, companies use demand letters exactly as their name suggests. They demand that customers, partners, or suppliers pay their arrears or money due to them for services rendered. Although these letters may seem pretty straightforward because you are only demanding something, this is still considered a legal document.

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Boston personal injury lawyer David W. White of Breakstone, White & Gluck

Attorney David W. White of Breakstone, White & Gluck in Boston.

Attorney David W. White was interviewed for WBUR’s news coverage of the Red Line subway accident that claimed a man’s life at Broadway Station in Boston over the weekend.  The man was reportedly dragged after his arm got caught in a subway door. The National Transportation Safety Board is now investigating.

Breakstone, White & Gluck represents clients who have been injured in MBTA subway crashes, pedestrian bus accidents and other incidents in the Boston area.  When asked, Attorney White said he believes the law allows the MBTA to offer sympathy to an injured party without making an admission, but he does not recall a time this has happened.

“As long as you’re not saying, for example, ‘I’m sorry that I was negligent and that someone suffered injury,’ you’re not making an admission,” he said. “But to simply say, ‘I’m sorry. I’m very sorry. Our condolences, our sympathies,’ there’s absolutely nothing wrong with that.” Read and listen to the WBUR coverage.

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How to amend a police report.We rely on police officers to maintain peace in our neighborhoods and to ensure that the rule of law is enforced. Beyond that, we also need them to record important information via police reports. However, there are also times when the need to amend a police report arises.

That is understandable. We all make mistakes, and there is no reason why police officers would be the exception.

Still, an error in a police report is not like a mistake in any other document. A single error can influence the initial impression of a case and have lasting consequences.

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Professional negligenceWhen professionals breach their duty of care or fail to perform their responsibilities to the required standards of their profession, we refer to this poor conduct as professional negligence. This can result in damage or financial loss to the client who hired the professional to provide the expected standard of service in the profession.

If you are working as a professional who proffers expertise in a particular field, someone can file a claim of professional negligence against you. For instance, doctors, IT specialists, management consultants, surveyors, etc., are all professionals in varying industries.

As a professional or expert in your field, you must be careful in the carriage or exercise of your duties. Aim to deliver reasonable care and proper services that meet or exceed the accepted standards in your profession. If you fail to do so, you could be exposed to a claim of negligence against you. A successful claim can result in hefty damages or loss of your professional license.

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Construction workers inspecting a construction site

Common construction site accidents.

If you work in a construction zone, you must do your best to be careful because construction site accidents are rampant. According to the OSHA or Occupational Safety and Health Administration, 20% of job-related deaths occur in the construction industry. On top of that, more construction workers suffer from work-related injuries each year.

This data may not surprise you because it is fairly obvious that a construction zone is extremely hazardous. You have nails, chainsaws, staple guns, cranes, etc. When not properly handled, all of these can result in injuries ranging from minor abrasions and burns to fatal electrocutions or falls. And even with proper care and handling, accidents can still happen.

It is vital to know what these accidents are so you can be aware of the risks when you enter a construction zone. Understanding how these common accidents happen in construction areas can help you mitigate disasters. More importantly, it will give you the presence of mind to act fast when a serious accident occurs.

Fifteen Most Frequent Construction Accidents

Injuries in a construction zone are common because of the many hazardous types of equipment that workers need to boost performance and productivity. In addition, you have live electricity and gravity to contend with, apart from risky tools.

For example, when poorly trained co-workers make one wrong move from the 4th floor, the perilous fall can result in traumatic brain injury, multiple fractures, or death. The damage sustained from this kind of workplace accident can be life-altering, depending on the severity of the situation.

Although there are numerous ways for a construction worker to get hurt on the job, you will find many common accidents regularly documented in the emergency room. For example, the top fifteen most frequent construction site accidents are as follows:

Falls From Great Heights

This is the leading accident in a construction area. It should not come as a surprise because it is common for construction workers to perform their duties perched on a high area like scaffoldings, rooftops, ladders, etc. This can result in physical injuries from minor scrapes to serious fractures like spinal cord injuries. The severity usually depends on the height of the fall and where the worker lands. Sometimes, luck also plays a role as some have gone miraculously unscathed.

Falling Debris

Construction workers don a hard hat to prevent head trauma from falling debris. However, this plastic covering can only do so much. When heavy tools, building materials, equipment, pieces of scaffolding, or other supplies fall on a person, it can do severe damage; more so when the object comes from a significant height. It can even result in fatality.

Electric Shocks

It is common to find exposed, live wires in a construction zone. In addition, you will also encounter unfinished electrical systems, incomplete circuit breakers, unfinished receptacles, or downed power lines. On top of that, there are electrical equipment, lighting fixtures, and other power issues to deal with. For these mentioned reasons, construction workers are at risk for electrical shocks or electrocution, resulting in arrhythmia or heart attack.

Burns

A live wire may not cause an electric shock, but it can still create a spark or overheat the system. When this happens, something can explode, and there will be a fire. Hence, construction workers are prone to severe burns.

Slips

Construction sites are often messy. You will encounter tools, equipment, materials, and other debris lying around. As a result, workers often trip on them. Moreover, there can be material spillage like oil, which can be slippery. Slips can be dangerous, resulting in a bone fracture. It can also result in lacerations and abrasions.

Fires or Explosions

When live wires create a spark, it can result in a massive explosion. Similarly, gas leaks can also be fatal. For example, paint thinner is highly flammable. Carbon monoxide is also toxic. The presence of both in an enclosed construction space is deadly. It also does not help that there are many flammable items on a construction site like:

  • Wood
  • Paper
  • Plastic
  • Cardboard
  • Drywall

Trench Accidents

It is common to find trenches in construction areas. After all, workers need to dig deep to lay down the foundation of any building. However, the massive excavations make the surrounding areas unstable. As a result, the ground could collapse on the workers, resulting in devastating injuries. To make things worse, people can be trapped or buried underneath piles of rubble with no way out.

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Breakstone, White & Gluck's Project KidSafe campaign

Breakstone, White & Gluck donated bike helmets to support the International Institute of New England and Bikes Not Bombs as they work to collect bikes for Afghan refugees.

Breakstone, White & Gluck was pleased to donate 60 bicycle helmets to support the International Institute of New England (IINE) and community groups as they give Afghan refugees bikes for transportation.

IINE has been working with many companies, organizations and individuals to help Afghan refugees resettle in the Boston area. IINE and Bikes Not Bombs in Jamaica Plain are now seeking donations of used adult bicycles (in good or repairable condition). Bikes Not Bombs and other volunteers will conduct safety checks and make minor repairs before bikes are distributed to those in need.

Each bike will be given away with a helmet, lock, light, and bike safety literature. Bikes Not Bombs will donate free bike lights and provide discounted bike locks while Breakstone, White & Gluck has donated a supply of helmets. MassBike helped IINE prepare the bike literature in the Dari and Pashtu languages. Others, such as Rozzie Bikes and Temple Emmanuel of Newton, have also been involved or have expressed interest in collecting bikes or supporting the effort, IINE’s volunteer coordinator said. The organization is not sure how many bikes they will need or ultimately give away over the next few months.

According to Bikes Not Bombs and IINE, hundreds of refugees have arrived since the fall of Afghanistan and are in need of assistance to be mobile in their communities, to access various resources, and to commute to work — all vital first steps towards self-sufficiency.

“Breakstone, White & Gluck is happy to provide bike helmets to families who are making new lives in America after having recently escaped from Afghanistan,” said Attorney Ron Gluck of Breakstone, White & Gluck. “We hope that these families enjoy safe riding and have a peaceful transition to their new surroundings in the Boston area.”

“The refugees have a real need for bicycles,” said Alan Wright of Rozzie Bikes, who is repairing bikes along with Bikes Not Bombs. “Transportation is a big barrier. In the first few months, the refugees have to get to doctor’s appointments, go out and do groceries and attend English as a Second Language classes. Then they need to find work. And it can take six months to get a driver’s license.”

Bikes Not Bombs and IINE are collecting adult bikes which are in good or repairable condition. If you are interested in donating a bike, please fill out the IINE’s form: https://iine.wufoo.com/forms/z6cvn5q0go3y5q/.

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Bicycle Accident

What to do after being in a bike accident.

Developing a habit of riding a bike can be good for your health, your bank account, and even the environment. However, be extra cautious whenever you are using that two-wheeler because a bike accident can be devastating.

The aftermath of an accident can leave you shaken and bewildered. You may get disoriented from the incident and become unsure of what to do next.

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Single car crash

Single vehicle crash

If you have been involved in a single-vehicle accident recently, you may be confused about who is responsible and even assume you are at fault. However, these types of car crashes are not always so straightforward.

You may not deserve a ticket, fines, or criminal charges, and you may not be responsible for paying for damage, including to your own vehicle, or for paying medical expenses if you were injured. In fact, another party may be liable for the accident and for expenses that resulted from it.

Our legal team at Breakstone, White & Gluck put together this post to give you more information about single-vehicle and liability. We want you to know how to protect your rights and understand your options after a one-car accident.

What Is a Single-Vehicle Accident?

Most of the time, car crashes involve two or more vehicles that collide with each other, and all vehicles become damaged. However, a single-vehicle accident is a crash with damage to only one car, truck, van, or motorcycle. A single-vehicle collision is less common, but this type of crash happens every day.

One-car accidents can occur pretty easily, when you think about it. Some common causes include:

  • Exceeding the speed limit
  • Driving too fast for weather conditions
  • Operating under the influence of drugs or alcohol (DUI)
  • Distracted driving, such as talking on a cell phone
  • Medical emergency, like a seizure or diabetic episode
  • Poor visibility or excessively bright sunlight
  • Obstruction, animal, or pedestrian in the road
  • Poor road maintenance
  • Another vehicle veering into your lane
  • Hitting the accelerator by accident instead of the brake
  • Mechanical failure of the vehicle

A single-vehicle accident can involve more than one car or truck, but only one is damaged. Say another car moves unexpectedly into your lane and you veer onto the sidewalk to avoid a car crash, hitting a mailbox. The other car is fine but yours is damaged; this is a classic single-vehicle crash.

As you might guess, private and municipal property damage often occurs with single-vehicle crashes. Typically, fences, light posts, utility poles, street signs, fire hydrants, guardrails, and landscaping, including trees, are involved. A single-vehicle accident could also entail you spinning out and winding up facing the wrong way on a busy road, or you could flip your vehicle in a roll-over crash.

Generally speaking, one-car accidents are categorized differently than if a single vehicle hits a bystander or pedestrian. Another criterion for this type of accident is that only the driver of the vehicle or their passengers are injured in the crash, not people outside the car or truck.

Determining Liability in a Single-Car Crash

If your actions are found to be the proximate cause of a car crash, you are considered liable. Proximate cause means something you did started the chain of events that led to the crash. Let’s look at some of the accident causes listed above as examples.

Imagine you’re driving in slippery snow. Even if you’re going the speed limit, you may be doing what’s called driving too fast for conditions, and you should slow down to accommodate the weather. If you slide off the road into a traffic light, you are liable for the crash.

What if someone calls you on your mobile phone while you are driving? Even if you only pick up the phone to see who’s calling, without actually answering the call, you could be considered liable if you are distracted and run off the road into a fire hydrant. Carelessness and failure to obey the rules of the road often result in single-vehicle accidents.

Never assume, though, that you are at fault simply because you were in a single-vehicle accident. There are times when another party or conditions beyond your control are the cause of a crash. It’s very important to know your rights when it comes to these types of accidents, which we discuss below.

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