Recently in Auto Accidents Category

July 21, 2015

New Mexico Police Implement New Technology to Cut Back on Distracted Driving

The police department in Farmington, New Mexico will be the first department in the State of New Mexico to implement a new technology that will prevent officers from using their on-board laptop while behind the wheel. According to one local New Mexico news source, the department is considering a plan where the on-board computer will be disabled at 20 miles per hour and shuts down completely at 25 miles per hour.

police-car-1515955.jpgAccording to the article, vehicle crashes account for roughly 40% of all police officer fatalities, and they have been the single largest cause of death for police officers since the mid-1990s. A spokeswoman for the police department told reporters that the department is taking a "proactive approach," and "instead of waiting for something to happen, a tragic accident, we would rather implement it now."

This technology has been in use in the private sector for a number of years, but this is the first police department in New Mexico to use it to regulate police officers' driving habits.

Continue reading "New Mexico Police Implement New Technology to Cut Back on Distracted Driving " »

July 14, 2015

Reports Indicate that Accidents Resulting in Fatalities Increase During Summer Months

Many states release reports in regards to accident statistics in the hopes that the information will educate drivers and reduce accidents. A report by the Texas Department of Public Safety revealed that the time between Memorial Day and Labor Day is considered the "100 Most Deadly Days" for teen drivers. This is likely because the teenagers are out of school and are spending more time driving.

pie-chart-1165990.jpgUnfortunately, almost two-thirds of accidents where a person is injured or killed involve a teen driver. In addition to general driver inexperience, AAA also attributes the rise in crashes to the increase in traffic congestion, construction, and the prevalence of distracted and fatigued drivers.

New Mexico Department of Transportation Traffic Safety Division Statistics on Accidents

The New Mexico Geospatial and Population Students, Traffic Research Unit, and Department of Transportation Traffic Safety Division compile detailed New Mexico traffic accident statistics every few years. Their research revealed some startling statistics, such as the fact that the fatality rate in New Mexico is higher than the national average. Furthermore, in New Mexico, alcohol-related accidents account for about 50% of all accident-related fatalities. The three leading causes of New Mexico car accidents were driver distraction, failing to yield, and following too closely. Although they did not release a seasonal statistic, the day of the week that most accidents occur is Saturday, with the least amount of accidents occurring on Tuesdays. The report also detailed accidents and fatalities according to demographics such as age, driver experience, seat position, seatbelt use, and other pertinent factors.

Continue reading "Reports Indicate that Accidents Resulting in Fatalities Increase During Summer Months " »

June 25, 2015

Grand Jury Indicts Man after Hit-and-Run Crash in New Mexico

A Farmington man has been indicted by a grand jury as a result of his alleged actions in an accident back in February of this year. According to local news reports, the man was involved in a road rage situation in which he hit another individual and then left the scene of the accident.

harley-day-in-arnhem-792931-m.jpgThe victim was driving on Interstate 25 when a truck driver began to tailgate him and a few other drivers on the road. The victim pulled into a parking lot near Highway 550 and got out of the vehicle. Video footage shows the truck driver following the driver into the parking lot and then slamming right into the victim and speeding away. Unfortunately, the victim suffered serious injuries, including a fractured pelvis, internal bleeding, broken ribs, and punctured lungs. The man is still in serious condition.

Video footage from the parking lot led to several leads, and luckily the truck driver was eventually apprehended. The truck driver was charged with criminal damage to property, aggravated battery with a deadly weapon, leaving the scene of an accident, and aggravated assault. The truck driver was arraigned and ordered by the judge not to leave the state.

Continue reading "Grand Jury Indicts Man after Hit-and-Run Crash in New Mexico " »

June 4, 2015

Mixed Martial Arts Fighter Arrested After New Mexico Hit-and-Run Accident

Earlier this week, a police video surfaced from an April accident that involved mixed martial arts (MMA) competitor Jon Jones. According to one news report, the allegations are that Jones ran a red light, causing a three-vehicle accident, and then fled the scene.

crash-car-748825-m.jpgEvidently, the accident occurred in the afternoon hours of April 27, when Jones allegedly ran a red light and crashed into two other vehicles. Chilling 911 tapes and video footage have recently been released that document the destruction. There is no video showing Jones fleeing the scene, but witness accounts suggest that he left immediately after the accident and then quickly returned to remove an amount of cash from the car. He then left the scene again.

If he is convicted of leaving the scene of the accident, Jones may face up to three years in New Mexico state prison. In addition to any criminal penalties Jones may face, he also had his Light Heavyweight Championship title stripped and has been indefinitely suspended from the league.

Continue reading "Mixed Martial Arts Fighter Arrested After New Mexico Hit-and-Run Accident " »

May 27, 2015

Record Number of Airbag Recalls After Deadly Explosions

Takata, a world-wide airbag manufacturer, has announced that it has started recalling a record number of airbags. Evidently, the recall was in response to several deaths that occurred as a result of the faulty airbags.

interior-car-details-4-223790-m.jpgThe airbags pose a serious risk of exploding and emitting debris and dangerous shrapnel toward passengers in the car. According to national news reports, the recall may take up to five years to actually complete because the airbags are not brand-centric and have been placed in many different cars. In fact, many owners may not even be aware of who the manufacturer of their airbags is. An expert who is working with the company to facilitate the recall explained that approximately 25%-30% of airbags may not be replaced because many of the cars are several years old and have gone through many owners. As of the most recent reports, the company has manufactured about four million replacements, and they are hoping to double their manufacturing capacity by the fall.

Where to File a Claim in a Product Liability Suit in New Mexico

As described above, several people have been killed because of the faulty airbags, and it is likely that others who were unaware at the time of the accident may commence a personal injury suit as well. The issue that arises in these types of situations is the question of jurisdiction. This basically is the determination of where the suit can be filed because the manufacturer is often not where the individual actually resides or where the injury took place. Generally, personal injury claims in New Mexico can brought in the county where the defendant is living or where the accident actually happened. In New Mexico, district courts have what is termed "general jurisdiction" over any injury for which the plaintiff claims the damages are over $10,000.

Continue reading "Record Number of Airbag Recalls After Deadly Explosions " »

April 21, 2015

New Mexico Man Killed in South Texas Rollover Accident

A 42-year-old man from Mcintosh, New Mexico was killed in an accident near Presidio, Texas earlier this month when he lost control of his SUV and was ejected after the vehicle rolled. According to a local news report, the man was driving northbound on Highway 67 about 10 miles from the US-Mexico border in Presidio County, Texas on April 8 when at about 8:00 a.m. a tire blew out on the Honda SUV that he was driving, causing the vehicle to swerve off the roadway. When he tried to regain control and return the car to the roadway, he overcorrected, causing the car to roll over onto its side. The car rolled several times, and the man, who was not wearing a seatbelt, was thrown out of the vehicle and died at the scene.

car-accident-1-774604-m.jpgThe Danger of Ejection in Rollover Accidents

One of the greatest threats to a driver's or passenger's safety in the event of a rollover accident is the risk that the person will be ejected from the vehicle once it starts rolling. An accident victim's chances of survival are significantly lower when he or she is ejected from the vehicle. The largest deciding factor to determine whether a car occupant will be ejected is whether the person is wearing their seatbelt.

Continue reading "New Mexico Man Killed in South Texas Rollover Accident " »

March 17, 2015

Adam Sandler's "Ridiculous Six" Driver Involved in Traffic Accident in New Mexico

Late last month, a truck driver on Adam Sandler's "Ridiculous Six" show was almost killed in a single vehicle accident. The woman was thrown from her truck when it overturned near the Santa Fe Municipal Airport. A national online newspaper reported that the accident occurred when the woman approached a sharp turn that she was unable to navigate.

silver-pickup-296181-m.jpgThe Santa Fe police representative explained that a preliminary investigation has revealed that the woman was not wearing a seatbelt when the accident occurred, and it is likely that speed played a role in the accident. The road conditions were noted to be normal at the time of the accident and alcohol was not considered to be a factor in the accident.

The woman's injuries were so severe that she had to be immediately airlifted to a hospital that was about an hour away from the accident location. She was not breathing for several minutes and was brought back to life by emergency workers. Further, she has just now begun to be able to move all of her limbs--prior to that, paralysis was a concern.

Continue reading "Adam Sandler's "Ridiculous Six" Driver Involved in Traffic Accident in New Mexico " »

March 10, 2015

March of Sorrow for DWI Accident Victims Held in New Mexico

Every year in Santa Fe, New Mexico, new DWI bills are introduced, but not many of them actually make it to law. A recent news report in New Mexico discussed the influence that the group Mothers Against Drunk Drivers (MADD) has on legislators and the bills that make it into law. As the article notes, one way that MADD brings attention to DWI deaths is through the annual March of Sorrow. The DWI March of Sorrow remembers DWI accident victims and happens once every year. It is in its sixth consecutive year.

red-and-white-wine-bottles-279133-m.jpgOne local news report recounts an incident where a woman who was riding on a motorcycle was hit by a drunk driver. After some time, the woman discovered that the individual who ran a stop sign and hit her and her boyfriend was only 15 years old. Fortunately, the woman and her boyfriend were not killed in the accident. However, this is an anomaly, especially in cases where motorcycles are involved.

This particular woman called for stricter penalties and laws against repeat offenders. MADD agrees and has expressed its support in penalties that include a focus on treatment in addition to closing the loopholes that can lead to dismissal based on a technicality.

Continue reading "March of Sorrow for DWI Accident Victims Held in New Mexico " »

February 3, 2015

Two University of New Mexico Students Die in Crash, One Driver Faces Criminal Charges

A November car crash resulted in the death of two University of New Mexico students and the hospitalization of two others. After several months of investigation, a 21-year-old man has been indicted for the accidents and charged with stealing a motor vehicle, tampering with evidence, larceny, child abuse, vehicular homicide because of DWI, and three counts of vehicular homicide because of reckless driving.

railings-908862-m.jpgAccording to a local news report, the driver and his passenger left the scene after causing the accident. They were eventually arrested shortly after the crash. The driver was tested, and it was determined that he had methamphetamines in his system. Police have indicated that the car the defendant was driving was stolen.

Unfortunately, two of the students died at the scene of the accident, and two other students were taken to a nearby hospital. One of the students who was taken to the hospital has been undergoing extensive physical therapy and is just now learning how to walk on his own again. The other student taken to the hospital has been recovering from a fractured sternum, a lacerated liver, and a serious head injury.

Continue reading "Two University of New Mexico Students Die in Crash, One Driver Faces Criminal Charges " »

January 12, 2015

Midland County Accident Takes Life of One Man During Sleet Storm

Late last month, a Midland County, New Mexico man was killed after being involved in an accident in the County. Local New Mexican news reports indicate that the incident occurred about 20 miles south of the county line on New Year's Eve.

tress-with-ice-crystals-in-sunlight-1409549-m.jpgThe State Troopers indicated that a Ford F-350 was driving northbound on FM 1788. At some point, the driver of the Ford attempted to pass a semi-trailer. Unfortunately, in doing so, the man lost control of his vehicle. After losing control, the car began to roll and ended up in a ditch on its side. The 38-year-old driver of the truck was killed in the accident. He was not wearing a seat belt at the time of the incident. State officials explained that the road was quite icy, and it was sleeting at the time of the accident.

Driving in Hazardous Conditions in New Mexico

Driving always encompasses a certain amount of risk, but most often motorists are injured not by a stroke of bad luck but due to the negligence of another. In the above case, it is not indicated whether the semi-truck driver was injured or involved in the accident. However, in many cases when two vehicles are involved in the crash, one party has a higher level of culpability in the crash.

Continue reading "Midland County Accident Takes Life of One Man During Sleet Storm " »

January 6, 2015

Victim of Christmas Eve Crash in Santa Fe Was Not in Crosswalk at Time of Crash

On Christmas Eve in Santa Fe, an individual was hit by a car and killed as a result of the accident. A local Santa Fe news report indicated that the victim has finally been identified after his family was notified. The 33-year-old man was walking near Cerrillos Road and Siler Road. He was crossing the street when the accident occurred. Unfortunately, he passed away after being hit by the car. A preliminary investigation has revealed that the man was not in a proper crosswalk when he was hit by the car. Since the man was not in the crosswalk when he was crossing the road, the driver of the car that hit him is not currently being charged with any crime.

winter-road-1130317-m.jpgCivil Liability Without Criminal Liability in New Mexico

If an individual was injured by the negligence of another party, he or she may be able to bring a negligence claim against that party if he or she can establish the elements of negligence. To bring a claim of negligence in New Mexico, the plaintiff must be able to prove that he or she was injured by another individual who owed him or her a duty of care, that individual breached that duty, and as a result the plaintiff suffered injuries and damages. Many people believe that if no criminal charges were pressed against the wrongdoer, a civil claim will not be successful. However, that is not the case because the legal standards for criminal negligence and civil negligence differ. Although it is easier to prove negligence if criminal charges were pressed, the absence of them is not a bar to recovery.

Continue reading "Victim of Christmas Eve Crash in Santa Fe Was Not in Crosswalk at Time of Crash " »

December 26, 2014

Two Fatalities in New Mexico Crash on U.S. 550

Late last week, a crash occurred on U.S. 550 that resulted in the deaths of two individuals. A local New Mexican station reported that the crash occurred around 6:45 p.m. on December 19. Apparently, Sandoval County police noticed a car driving north on U.S. 550 without its light on. The police officers attempted to stop the car, but the driver continued to keep driving.

crashed-car-1148745-m.jpgInstead of stopping, the car started swerving and veering across the northbound lanes. The car was weaving dangerously in and out of traffic. Eventually, a deputy began pursuing the driver, but even then the car continued on. The police stopped pursuing the car while the deputy was following the driver. Shortly after that pursuit, that car and another driver ended up in a head-on collision. The driver and her passenger were killed. The driver in the car was air-lifted and remains in critical condition as of the most recent reports.

Head-On Collisions in New Mexico

All car accidents have the potential to result in serious injuries, but head-on collisions can often be catastrophic. The above situation is a prime example of how head-on collisions often occur. Generally, one car will swerve across lanes and hit the front of another car.

Continue reading "Two Fatalities in New Mexico Crash on U.S. 550 " »

December 10, 2014

New Mexico Family Involved in Fatal Accident on U.S. 385

Late last week, a family was traveling on U.S. 385 when they were involved in a fatal accident. According to local news reports, a man was driving his Ford north on U.S. 385 in Texas when he crossed over the highway's center. The family was driving a Chevrolet in the southbound direction as the driver of the Ford was moving into their lane.

desert-road-1435468-m.jpgThe driver attempted to avoid the crash and began to brake, but he was unable to navigate the car to avoid the collision. The Ford hit the family's van on the left side, and that hit caused both cars to burst into flames. The family in the Chevrolet included a mother, father, two daughters, and a young son. Unfortunately, all but the young son were killed in the accident. According to the most recent reports, the teenager is in critical condition at a medical center in Texas. Additionally, the driver of the Ford was also pronounced dead at the scene of the accident.

Continue reading "New Mexico Family Involved in Fatal Accident on U.S. 385 " »

December 4, 2014

University of New Mexico Students Hit and Killed in Accident

broken-glass-1006530-m.jpgTwo University of New Mexico students were killed late last month when their car was T-boned by an individual fleeing in a stolen car. According to a local news report, the man driving the stolen car was on Rio Grande Boulevard. Two students were hit and killed, and two others were seriously injured. Apparently, right after the accident the driver of the car and a passenger immediately left the scene. The driver was eventually arrested.

Two of the young students were killed, and the other two are currently recovering in the hospital. The University has organized a vigil for the students who passed. Court documents indicate that the driver admitted to smoking marijuana just a few hours before the incident occurred, and an investigation revealed marijuana on his person. The investigation is still on-going, but one of the accused individuals did appear in court.

Incidents such as these are devastating and no matter who the wrongful death lawyer is, or what the result of the case may be, it is never enough, and is certainly never justice. At times our civil legal system excels at "making things right" and "compensating a victim" however, when faced with an accident like the one the shook Albuquerque, no legal system can ever be prepared or capable of coming close to addressing the loss that family and loved ones are left with after such an event.

Continue reading "University of New Mexico Students Hit and Killed in Accident " »

November 9, 2014

Sleeping Driver Responsible for Fatal Lea County Accident

It appears from the preliminary investigation into a tragic two-vehicle crash that occurred last month that the effects of drowsy driving have taken the lives of two more New Mexicans. The drivers of the two vehicles, which collided head-on, were both killed. Passengers in each vehicle were airlifted to a Texas hospital with serious injuries. According to a local news source, the crash occurred at around 6:40 AM near milepost 60 on State Road 18 in Lea County, between Lovington and Hobbs.

road-and-windmills-1434948-m.jpgThe article indicates that the driver of the southbound vehicle, a 24-year-old man from Lovington, fell asleep while driving and drifted into the northbound lane of traffic, crashing head on into the other vehicle, which was being driven by a 30-year-old man from Los Lunas, New Mexico.

Inattentive and drowsy driving remain among the most concerning dangers for drivers today, and the dangerous decision by a driver not to pull over to rest all too often results in a deadly New Mexico auto accident, as happened last month. Drowsy driving accidents are the most common on rural highways with little to no nighttime lighting and high speed limits, and they often involve vehicles colliding with each other head-on. These factors unfortunately help to explain why accidents involving sleeping drivers have a comparatively high chance of resulting in serious injury or death. Because of this danger, drivers must know to always stop and rest if they are feeling drowsy behind the wheel. Rest stops and expanded shoulders are available for drivers to pull over, and it is always better to be late than to be responsible for a tragedy and potentially encounter significant civil and criminal liability.

Continue reading "Sleeping Driver Responsible for Fatal Lea County Accident " »