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ARCHIVES: February 2018

Mark Chappell Presents at Southeast Regional Conference in Atlanta

South Carolina Workers Compensation Lawyer, Mark Chappell. of Chappell Smith & Arden, P.A. Presents at Southeast Regional Conference in AtlantaCSA Law’s Mark Chappell recently spoke at the Southeast Regional Conference in Atlanta, Georgia. Mark’s presentation was titled, “Workers’ Injury Law and Advocacy Group.”

For more information on Workers’ Compensation, call our offices at 803-929-3600 or contact us online.

Work Injuries and Weather

Columbia Workers’ Compensation Lawyers weigh in on weather related work injuries and provide ways employers can keep their workers safe. Extreme temperatures and slippery surfaces present hazards to workers across the country. In addition to following Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) guidelines, employers should take precautions during severe weather to prevent workers from suffering injuries. Employers can take several steps to protect the health of their workers and provide them with safe environments during severe weather.

Rainy Weather

Rainy weather presents several hazards, including slippery surfaces and decreased visibility. Workers are encouraged to move slowly and carefully, especially when climbing ladders. They should also be sure to use the appropriate equipment such as textured-nonslip tools, deep tread footwear, and well-ventilated clothing. To ensure adequate vision, workers should use anti-fog spray on their eyewear and wear high-visibility clothing, especially when operating heavy machinery or working in areas with high traffic.

Hot Weather

Employers should ensure that their workplace has adequate ventilation. Employees should be given water breaks and the option of spending time in a cool or shaded area provided by their employers. Employers may also consider allowing employees to work shorter shifts to allow them to build a level of tolerance, or temporarily changing the dress code to prevent employees from developing heat-related injuries such as heat-stroke, which can be life-threatening. Employers should not only be aware of how to prevent occupational heat exposure, but also what to do in case of an emergency. OSHA suggests including prevention and emergency response steps in worksite training and plans.

Cold and Winter Weather

Cold, wintery weather can pose hazards to workers who are exposed to the harsh elements. During the winter months, employees are at risk of developing cold-weather conditions such as frostbite and hypothermia. Workers may develop frostbite if they are exposed to the elements over an extended period. If workers do not protect themselves with appropriate clothing, this condition can cause body tissue to freeze due to decreased blood flow and heat to the extremities.

Hypothermia may develop when a worker’s core body temperature drops below 95°F. This condition may even lead to fatal injuries if the temperature drop causes heart and respiratory failure. Workers may prevent frostbite, hypothermia, and other cold-weather conditions by protecting their ears, faces, hands, and feet by wearing several layers of loose clothing.

Winter weather also presents unique dangers in terms of slip and fall injuries. Workers may slip and fall on icy surfaces. Employers should therefore ensure that snow and ice is cleared from all walking surfaces and that deicer is spread as soon as possible after heavy snowfall. All areas should also be well-lit, and employers should use signs to notify workers of any hazards. Finally, if the weather is too severe, employee schedules may need to be modified so that they are not traveling when it is too cold or when road-conditions are too dangerous.

Columbia Workers’ Compensation Lawyers at Chappell Smith & Arden, P.A. Represent Employees Injured Due to Negligent Employers

Employers have a responsibility to provide safe workplaces. If you suffered a workplace injury, you may be entitled to compensation. Contact an experienced Columbia Workers’ Compensation lawyer at Chappell Smith & Arden, P.A. to discuss your case. For a free consultation, contact us online or call us at 803-929-3600.

We represent clients throughout South Carolina, including in Columbia, Aiken, Camden, Sumter, Orangeburg, Greenville, Florence, Beaufort, Irmo, Spartanburg, Myrtle Beach, Hilton Head Island, West Columbia, Rock Hill, Charleston, Lexington, Winnsboro, Summerville, and throughout the counties of Lexington County, Richland County, Sumtner County, Aiken County, Florence County, Lancaster County, York County, Orangebury County, Kershaw County, and Newberry County.

School Bus Collided with SUV in Gaston Causing Numerous Injuries

School Bus Collided with SUV in Gaston Causing Numerous InjuriesA school bus collided with an SUV on Tuesday morning and caused numerous personal injuries. The school bus accident took place when an SUV went through a stop sign at the intersection of Blackville Road and Fallaw Road in Gaston, South Carolina. Eighteen local middle school and high school students and the bus driver sustained a variety of injuries while three occupants of the SUV also required medical treatment. Although one victim sustained a serious injury, most injuries were deemed minor and non-life-threatening.

When school buses engage in a collision with another vehicle, victims may be in danger of incurring a range of injuries and potential fatalities. Due to the lack of safety features in a school bus, passengers are vulnerable when an accident occurs. Even fully trained bus drivers may be unable to avoid the possibility of a crash with a reckless driver.

If you or your loved ones have been injured in a bus accident, our Columbia bus accident lawyers at Chappell Smith & Arden, P.A. will provide legal guidance. You may schedule a free consultation by calling 803-929-3600 or 800-531-9780 or contact us online. With offices located throughout South Carolina, we serve clients in Lexington County, Richland County, Sumter County, Aiken County, Florence County, Lancaster County, York County, Orangeburg County, Kershaw County, and Newberry County, including those in towns of Columbia, Lexington, Irmo, Chapin, Rock Hill, Aiken, Sumter, Newberry, Florence, and Spartanburg.

 

GM Marketplace Launch

South Carolina Car Accident Lawyers discuss how vehicle technology can lead to an increase in distracted driving accidents. General Motors (GM) will soon be installing a new application called Marketplace in all 2017 and 2018 Chevrolet, Buick, GMC, and Cadillac models. The app allows users to locate gas stations, find parking, order food, reserve tables at restaurants, make hotel reservations, and shop for car parts from a dashboard touch screen. This technology operates independently from smartphone software, On-Star roadside assistance, and customer support service.

The GM vice president for Global Connected Customer Service estimates that the new app will be available on four million vehicles over the next 18 months. GM is currently working with Shell, Exxon Mobil, Parkopedia, Starbucks, Dunkin Donuts, Applebee’s, Wingstop, IHOP, delivery.com, TGI Fridays, and Priceline. Accroding to GM’s vice president, the company will be adding more vendors and improving the app during the upcoming months.

Distracted Driving Risk

Although the app is designed to be easy and safe to use while driving, it is drawing opposition from safety advocates who believe it will increase accidents by contributing to distracted driving. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) estimates that more than 3,400 people were fatally injured and 391,000 people were injured in distracted driving accidents during one year alone. The NHTSA reports that a significant portion of these injuries and fatalities is due to mobile device usage.

However, GM’s response is that their software developers adhered to industry guidelines in designing the system to minimize distracted driving. GM’s VP says that by using the app, customers will increase the ease and productivity of their trips. The GM Director of Global Digital Experience and Connected Vehicles agrees, stating that the app will actually encourage safer and more efficient driving because drivers can use the Marketplace app instead of their phones.

Dangerous Apps Can Cause More Accidents

A University of Utah psychology professor warns that technology may be used in ways its developers do not anticipate, thereby making the car more dangerous. His recent study found that many of the features in 2017 vehicles, including those that allow drivers to place telephone calls, text, tune radios, or program navigation systems should not be enabled while driving because they are distracting.

The NHTSA found that the risk of getting into a wreck doubles when a driver takes his or her eyes off the road for just two seconds. According to the study, voice-based and touch-screen technology typically distracts drivers for more than 24 seconds. Programming navigation was the most distracted task, followed by text messaging and audio entertainment.

South Carolina Car Accident Lawyers at Chappell Smith & Arden, P.A. Represent Victims of Distracted Driving Accidents

Drivers can become distracted by texting, eating, listening to the radio, or using in-vehicle technology such as the Marketplace app. If you have been involved in an accident caused by distracted driving, contact the experienced car accident lawyers in South Carolina at Chappell Smith & Arden, P.A.. Our team of knowledgeable and focused attorneys can help you obtain the compensation you deserve. Contact us online or call us at 803-929-3600 to schedule a free consultation.

We represent those injured in all types of car accidents throughout South Carolina, including in Columbia, Aiken, Camden, Sumter, Orangeburg, Greenville, Florence, Beaufort, Irmo, Spartanburg, Myrtle Beach, Hilton Head Island, West Columbia, Rock Hill, Charleston, Lexington, Winnsboro, Summerville, and throughout the counties of Lexington County, Richland County, Sumter County, Aiken County, Florence County, Lancaster County, York County, Orangeburg County, Kershaw County, and Newberry County.

Two Fatalities, Multiple Injuries in Gaston Car Collision

Two Fatalities, Multiple Injuries in Gaston Car CollisionA collision between two cars on Tuesday night led to two fatalities and multiple injuries in Gaston, South Carolina. Around 8 pm, the fatal car accident occurred when one car attempted to avoid a head-on crash that turned into a side-impact collision with a completely different car. The 60-year-old driver and 20-year-old passenger in the first car succumbed to their fatal injuries at the scene of the accident. Three passengers and the driver from the car that smacked into the first car sustained undisclosed injuries.

Even when drivers attempt to move out of the way of an oncoming crash, they may engage in another collision, which could be just as lethal. A spate of personal injuries as well as potential fatalities may accompany a crash like this. The type of injuries and length of recovery time may impinge on a victim’s ability to earn a proper income.

If you or your loved ones have been injured in a car accident, our Columbia car accident lawyers at Chappell Smith & Arden, P.A. will offer legal counsel. You may schedule a free consultation by calling 803-929-3600 or 800-531-9780 or contact us online. With offices located throughout South Carolina, we serve clients in Lexington County, Richland County, Sumter County, Aiken County, Florence County, Lancaster County, York County, Orangeburg County, Kershaw County, and Newberry County, including those in towns of Columbia, Lexington, Irmo, Chapin, Rock Hill, Aiken, Sumter, Newberry, Florence, and Spartanburg.

Greenville Golfer Bill Haas Injured in Fatal Rollover Wreck

Greenville Golfer Bill Haas Injured in Fatal Rollover WreckGolfer Bill Haas from Greenville, South Carolina sustained leg injuries during a rollover wreck. The fatal multi-vehicle accident occurred on Tuesday evening around 6:30 pm in Pacific Palisades, California, and involved three separate vehicles, including one driven by actor Luke Wilson. A car driven by a 50-year-old woman collided with the Ferrari in which Bill Haas was a passenger. Due to the impact of the collision, the Ferrari rolled over, fatally injuring the driver who Haas was staying with in preparation for a tournament and causing serious injuries for Haas. Luke Wilson escaped the rollover wreck unscathed. Sources say that Haas, whose injuries are less severe than initially suspected, plans to return to Greenville to recuperate.

Rollover wrecks for any vehicle may bring catastrophic results for any parties involved. Neck and spinal cord injuries are common as well as a host of other injuries and fatalities, too. Speeding may be a contributing factor in a rollover accident, but some vehicles like SUVs tend to overturn during crashes.

If you or your loved ones have been injured in a car accident, our Columbia car accident lawyers at Chappell Smith & Arden, P.A. will protect your rights. You may schedule a free consultation by calling 803-929-3600 or 800-531-9780 or contact us online. With offices located throughout South Carolina, we serve clients in Lexington County, Richland County, Sumter County, Aiken County, Florence County, Lancaster County, York County, Orangeburg County, Kershaw County, and Newberry County, including those in towns of Columbia, Lexington, Irmo, Chapin, Rock Hill, Aiken, Sumter, Newberry, Florence, and Spartanburg.

Fatal Wrong Way Collision Claims Life in Lexington County

Fatal Wrong Way Collision Claims Life in Lexington CountyA driver engaged in a wrong way collision with a tractor-trailer on Sunday morning. The fatal truck accident occurred around 3 am in Lexington County, South Carolina when the driver of a car drifted into the eastbound lanes of Interstate 26 after traveling west on the highway. The driver of the car incurred fatal injuries after the wrong way collision, which resulted in both vehicles running off the road and igniting. The tractor trailer driver escaped the crash unscathed.

Many wrong way accidents result in head-on collisions, which may cause drivers and passengers to sustain serious injuries or even fatalities. Contributing factors to a crash of this nature may include drowsy driving, drunk driving, or distracted driving. Survivors of a wrong way collision may suffer from debilitating injuries that may devolve into permanent disabilities, and be unable to earn an income in the aftermath.

If you or your loved ones have been injured in a truck accident, our Columbia truck accident lawyers at Chappell Smith & Arden, P.A. will advocate for you. You may schedule a free consultation by calling 803-929-3600 or 800-531-9780 or contact us online. With offices located throughout South Carolina, we serve clients in Lexington County, Richland County, Sumter County, Aiken County, Florence County, Lancaster County, York County, Orangeburg County, Kershaw County, and Newberry County, including those in towns of Columbia, Lexington, Irmo, Chapin, Rock Hill, Aiken, Sumter, Newberry, Florence, and Spartanburg.

Game App Causes Distracted Driving

York County Car Accident Lawyers weigh in on a fatality caused by a distracted driver playing Pokemon Go game. When the popular gaming app Pokémon Go was first released in 2016, the headlines quickly filled with stories of accidents caused by the game’s users. The first fatality attributed to Pokémon Go occurred only one month after the game’s release when a distracted driver fatally injured one woman and seriously injured another. Now researchers at Purdue University have confirmed that car accident rates at the game’s virtual locations are higher than average.

Pokémon Go uses the GPS function of a mobile device to track and capture virtual Pokémon. The augmented reality game uses a game map based on the player’s own geographical location. The Pokémon characters only appear when the user arrives at the same real-world location where the Pokémon have been situated on the game map. Other features on the map for players to visit include PokeStops and Pokémon gyms, which are located at places of interest.

The Dangers of Using the App While Driving

Researchers from the Krannert School of Management were investigating a theory that the advent of smartphone apps may be linked to increases in car accidents. From 2011 to 2015, the total number of vehicular crashes in the United States rose by approximately one million to over six million.

The Purdue study focused only on the Pokémon Go app and used county provided accident reports from March 2015 to November 2016. The reports contained data about the location of the crashes, as well as causes, injury and fatality numbers, and estimated value of damages. The researchers then looked at PokeStop locations to examine how the accident rates near the stops corresponded with county data.

Pokémon Go was released in July 2016, and the study finds a significant increase in the crash rate near PokeStops after July 2016, compared to the rate beforehand. An estimated 47 percent of the increase in crashes across the county were attributed to people playing Pokémon Go. In economic terms, the incremental vehicular damage totaled almost half a million dollars. In terms of incremental injuries and estimated loss of lifetime income, the game had an impact on the county of $988, 621. The research suggests that there were two preventable fatalities that stemmed from use of the game.

A National Problem

The Purdue study covered only the data from one county. Applying their findings to the rest of the U.S., the researchers estimate that across the country, an increase of 145,632 crashes could be linked to playing Pokémon Go. The total cost of damages, including medical costs and vehicular damage, could be between $2 billion and $7.3 billion.

After numerous reports of accidents, the game’s developer introduced a safety measure that detects the use of the phone while driving. The player then receives a warning that playing while driving is unsafe and must confirm they are a passenger in the vehicle before they can continue play. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration continues to warn of the dangers of distracted driving of all types.

York County Car Accident Lawyers at Chappell Smith & Arden, P.A. Advocate for Injured Victims of Distracted Driving Accidents

If you have been injured in a car accident caused by distracted driving, the dedicated car accident lawyers in York County at Chappell Smith & Arden, P.A. can help you recover compensation for your injuries. Call 800-531-9780 or contact us online to schedule a free consultation. We have multiple locations throughout South Carolina for your convenience, serving clients in Columbia, Aiken, Camden, Sumter, Orangeburg, Greenville, Florence, Beaufort, Irmo, Spartanburg, Myrtle Beach, Hilton Head Island, West Columbia, Rock Hill, Charleston, Lexington, Winnsboro, Summerville, and throughout the counties of Lexington County, Richland County, Sumter County, Aiken County, Florence County, Lancaster County, York County, Orangeburg County, Kershaw County, and Newberry County.

Every Second Matters Campaign

Columbia Car Accident Lawyers discuss a campaign to help end distracted driving. The Travelers Companies, Inc. has announced the launch of the Every Second Matters national campaign, which is aimed at solving the problem of distracted driving in America. Many people are aware of the dangers of distracted driving, yet almost a quarter of Americans surveyed admit to engaging in such behavior. With the campaign, Travelers hopes to promote safe driving conduct because even one second of distraction can result in a potentially life changing accident.

The statistics are sobering:

  • In the U.S. every day, nine people are fatally injured in a crash caused by a distracted driver, and 1,000 more are injured.
  • Travelers found that 10 percent of the people they surveyed had been in an accident caused by their own distracted driving, and three out of 10 had experienced a near miss.
  • Of over 1,000 employees surveyed, 43 percent said they answer or make work-related communications while driving. Age was not a factor when comparing millennials (18-34) with the group closest in age, Generation X (35-44). Over half of both groups said they make work-related communications while driving.

The Travelers educational series of symposia begins in North Carolina State University in Raleigh. Industry professionals, as well as leaders of the public and private sectors, will be discussing why drivers are so distracted, and will also be looking at new technology to help reduce those distractions. Participants include the National Safety Council, Road to Zero Coalition, NC Vision Zero, and the Independent Insurance Agents of North Carolina.

Efforts to Improve Safety

In conjunction with the campaign, Travelers is providing written materials exploring the trends in car accidents, and are offering tips for safe driving in the report, Every Second Matters: A conversation starter on reducing distracted driving risk. In Connecticut, Travelers supports the Connecticut Department of Motor Vehicle’s (DMV) Teen Safe Driving Video Contest. Prizes are awarded to teens who produce the best original video about safe driving. By targeting new drivers and using peer-to-peer influence, the DMV hopes to keep roads safer.

Travelers emphasizes that the responsibility for changing social behavior lies with everyone, including drivers, passengers, and pedestrians. Cell phone calls and texting are part of distracted driving, but anything that takes the driver’s attention away from the road qualifies as a safety risk. Those who observe distracted driving must speak up. Roadway fatalities are on the rise and something must change.

Columbia Car Accident Lawyers at Chappell Smith & Arden, P.A. Represent Injured Victims of Distracted Drivers

If you or someone you love has been injured in a car accident caused by a distracted driver, you may be eligible for compensation. The dedicated Columbia car accident lawyers at Chappell Smith & Arden, P.A. will fight to obtain the maximum allowable compensation for your injuries. Call 800-531-9780 today, or contact us online to schedule a free consultation. We have offices conveniently located in Columbia, Charleston, Rock Hill, Aiken, Florence, and Sumter, South Carolina, serving clients throughout the state, including in Columbia, Aiken, Camden, Sumter, Orangeburg, Greenville, Florence, Beaufort, Irmo, Spartanburg, Myrtle Beach, Hilton Head Island, West Columbia, Rock Hill, Charleston, Lexington, Winnsboro, Summerville, and throughout the counties of Lexington County, Richland County, Sumter County, Aiken County, Florence County, Lancaster County, York County, Orangeburg County, Kershaw County, and Newberry County.

Attorney McAngus Featured Speaker at Southern Trial Lawyers Association Conference  

South Carolina Personal Injury Lawyers advocate for injured individuals in South Carolina. Attorney W. Hugh McAngus, Jr. will be a featured speaker at the 30th Annual Southern Trial Lawyers Association conference held in New Orleans on Thursday. He will present a speech on “Pre-Suit Demands” before an audience comprised of attendees from 13 states. The regional conference brings trial lawyers together to share information and connect on personal and professional levels.

Currently, McAngus is the President of the South Carolina Association for Justice, and South Carolina’s Revitalization Board Member of the American Association for Justice. He primarily litigates truck accident cases but also handles personal injury and wrongful death cases in the areas of motor vehicle accidents, nursing home negligence, premises liability, dram shop, and product liability. Attorney McAngus has participated in various professional organizations and is a member of North Carolina and South Carolina bar associations.

If you would like more information about Chappell Smith & Arden, P.A. or to schedule a free consultation with  South Carolina Personal Injury Lawyers, please call 803-929-3600 or 800-531-9780 or contact us online. With offices located throughout South Carolina, we serve clients in Lexington County, Richland County, Sumter County, Aiken County, Florence County, Lancaster County, York County, Orangeburg County, Kershaw County, and Newberry County, including those in the towns of Columbia, Lexington, Irmo, Chapin, Rock Hill, Aiken, Sumter, Newberry, Florence, and Spartanburg.

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