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Wisconsin Law Blog

Semi truck accidents resulting in serious injuries

Semi truck drivers must be especially careful while on the road because they are often driving the largest vehicles by a significant margin. They also drive for long periods of time and at odd hours of the day, which present additional challenges to the drivers. It isn't unusual for truck accidents involving one or more semi trucks to result in severe injuries or even death. Last week, Wisconsin authorities responded to a serious crash involving two of these large vehicles that resulted in multiple injuries. 

One of the semi trucks was parked along the right shoulder of Interstate 94 eastbound during the early morning hours of Thursday, August 9. The second tractor-trailer was traveling eastbound on the interstate when it struck the stopped vehicle. Both eastbound lanes were closed after the crash occurred.

Riders at risk of being thrown in motorcycle accidents

Motorcyclists take a number of risks while on the road. Motorcycles are often smaller and more difficult to see than other vehicles. In motorcycle accidents, the drivers are also at greater risk of injury due to the lack of protection and the possibility of being thrown from their vehicles. Wisconsin authorities recently responded to such an accident.

A 62-year-old motorcyclist was traveling westbound when his bike was struck by a pick-up truck. The truck was traveling eastbound and was attempting to turn left onto an eastbound ramp when the accident occurred. The driver of the truck was wearing a seatbelt and was not injured in the crash. However, the motorcyclist was not as lucky, and the collision caused him to be thrown from his bike. Local sheriffs, EMS and the fire department all responded to the scene. 

Inmate's suicide sparks wrongful death suit

Many people across the country suffer from mental illnesses like depression and anxiety. These are serious conditions that can greatly affect a person's life. Some people are able to carry on with a relatively normal life with the help of medications or therapy, but others are unable to leave their homes due or may become suicidal even with the help of medications. A Wisconsin sheriff's office was recently named in a wrongful death suit after the suicide of one of the inmates. 

The woman was originally sentenced to 45 days in jail after attempting suicide by intentionally driving her car into the path of a semi-truck. Even before attempting to take her own life, this 51-year-old mother of eight had a history of depression, anxiety and PTSD. She was also on several medications to help with these conditions including Lisinopril, Clonazepam, Diclofenac, Prozac and Gabapentin. After she was sentenced, the court ordered that the woman should continue taking her prescribed medications as a part of her sentence. 

Truck accidents can cause minor and major injuries

Driving in traffic can be incredibly frustrating. Many drivers are guilty of following too close, and that can sometimes result in collisions. When large vehicles are involved in these crashes, then injuries of various degrees may be more likely to occur. Semi truck accidents especially are likely to result in injuries. On July 17, Wisconsin authorities responded to a crash involving a rolled transfer truck. 

The accident occurred around 4:20 in the afternoon. Authorities determined that the truck driver was following too closely and was unable to slow down in time to avoid striking the car in front of the truck. After striking the car, the truck swerved and struck the median wall and flipped over onto its side. The truck also used compressed natural gas as fuel, which began leaking after the crash. Nearby ramps and southbound lanes were closed because of the leak.  

How common is substance abuse among truckers?

Anyone who drinks alcohol or uses drugs before getting behind the wheel endangers everyone else on the roadway, but when the drivers of commercial trucks do the same, the repercussions can prove even more catastrophic. Because today’s commercial trucks are so heavy and large, they pose a threat to other motorists even under the best of circumstances, but many truckers admit to also abusing substances while on the job, which is hazardous for the entire motoring public.

Just how common is drug and alcohol abuse in the trucking industry?

What can be done to prevent animal bites

Thousands of families across the nation have pets. While walking through a neighborhood or in a store, many people are unable to resist stopping to pet the animals they see as they pass. However, as some Wisconsin residents have experienced, not all pets are as friendly or as trusting as they might appear behind a fence or on a leash. If people are not careful when confronting an animal then it is possible for animal bites to occur. There are, however, steps that people, including pet owners, especially those who own dogs can take to help prevent such accidents from happening.

Those who are passing a confined animal, one in a fence or on a chain, may wish to refrain from approaching it because even though the animal may appear friendly from a distance, it may react very differently up close. In some cases, an animal may begin to chase a person. However, instead of running away, a person should avoid eye contact and stand still until it is safe to slowly move away. If they do choose to approach a strange animal then allowing the animal to sniff them first could help to prevent startling it. Also, if it appears as though the animal is about to attack then a person should attempt to place something between him or herself and the animal. 

Forth of July car accidents result in deaths

The Fourth of July is a day of celebration for people across the nation. Families and friends get together, grill out and shoot fireworks late into the night. Because so many people are traveling throughout the day, the possibility of car accidents occurring often increases. This year, Wisconsin authorities responded to reports of a serious collision around 11:30 p.m. on July 4. 

When authorities arrived on the scene, they discovered that there were two vehicles involved in the crash. The first vehicle, an SUV, was traveling eastbound, and the second vehicle, a sedan, was traveling westbound. Witnesses told police that the eastbound SUV had crossed the center line and was traveling in the westbound lane before colliding head-on with the sedan. 

Injuries may be more likely in multi-car accidents

All vehicle crashes, even minor ones, have the potential to cause injury, and those injuries only become more severe when multiple vehicles or higher speeds are involved. Car accidents involving multiple vehicles may also be more likely to result in the death of one person or more. Last week Wisconsin authorities responded to reports of a multi-vehicle accident that resulted in multiple injuries as well as one fatality. 

This crash occurred on the afternoon of June 24 on State Highway 73. The northbound vehicle crossed the center line and collided head-on with the southbound vehicle. There were a total of four people involved in the crash, two traveling in each car. In addition to the Wisconsin State Patrol, three fire departments, a county EMS, a county sheriff's department and a county coroner responded to the accident. The state patrol technical unit also arrived later in order to reconstruct the crash. 

How to avoid a deadly crash this summer

The summer comes with a lot of celebration. Between fireworks, parades and picnics, you may be spending a lot more time on the road. Before you start out on your next road trip, it is important to review some safety tips.

According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, Independence Day is the deadliest holiday for traffic crashes. While you get ready to have fun this summer, here are some guidelines for avoiding becoming another statistic.

Failure to monitor suicidal teen results in wrongful death suit

People may experience a wide variety of traumatic events. Some may argue that few of these traumatic experiences can compare with rape, especially for a teenager. These victims, no matter what age, are often carefully monitored for signs of self-harm, substance abuse, suicidal tendencies or other mental or physical issues in order to prevent the victims from being harmed further. A wrongful death suit claims that a Wisconsin group home and its staff failed to heed warnings of one resident's suicidal tendencies. 

The victim, a 17-year-old girl, was admitted to the hospital after attempting to hang herself in her closet at that group home. Allegations indicate that a staff member of the home failed to check in on her at regular intervals, as was policy and despite warning signs that the girl might have been suicidal. She had a history of self-harm and was punished earlier that same day for possessing alcohol. That evening the teenage girl went up to her room alone and shut the door, which is forbidden by the group home.

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