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Los Angeles Motor Vehicle Accident Blog

Motorcycle crashes can cause spinal injury to riders

Even when a motorcycle rider wears a helmet and all the rest of the protective gear that experts recommend, they are vulnerable to serious injury from a collision with a larger vehicle. Just about any part of the human can and has been hurt in a motorcycle accident in Los Angeles at some point.

Of all the injuries that riders experience, perhaps the most serious type is injury to the spine. Spinal cord injuries can cause long-term disabilities ranging from back pain to paralysis, which we discussed in some detail in our Aug. 19 blog post.

Do brain injuries affect minorities more?

Sustaining a brain injury in a car accident can be very serious for anyone, no matter their skin color or ethnicity. However, a recent scientific study suggests that a victim’s ability to recover from traumatic brain injury (TBI) may depend on his or ethnicity.

Researchers at the Kessler Foundation published a study urging that studies of brain injury consequences and treatments be done with cultural diversity in mind. The authors noted that previous studies have shown that ethnic minorities tend to have symptoms for longer, and suffer worse long-term outcomes.

California Highway Patrol: 2,995 car accident deaths in 2012

A report by the California Highway Patrol says that exactly 2,995 people were killed in motor vehicle accidents in 2012. Each of these people had their own individual lives. They likely had families, friends, hopes and dreams. Some of them were the victims of a reckless or negligent driver. Others may have been at least partially responsible for the accident.

Though may seem impersonal to look at these 2,995 fatalities as a set of statistics instead of lives lost, reports like the CHP’s 2012 annual report of car accidents involving injury and death may shed some insight on how these sorts of wrecks occur.

Quadriplegia-related injuries have dramatic impact on victims

A spinal cord injury can be devastating. Depending on where on the spine the injury happens, the victim could be left paralyzed from the waist down, or be paralyzed in all four limbs. This latter condition is known as quadriplegia.

Quadriplegia is known as tetraplegia in Europe. According to Disabled World, it is caused by an injury to the brain or the first seven bones of the spine. Damage to these body parts can cause a secondary injury to the spinal cord, which doctors call a "lesion." The lesion can cause the victim's limbs to have limited to no movement.

Here are possible signs you have a traumatic brain injury

It is not always easy to tell immediately if someone has suffered a brain injury. However, there are symptoms that doctors and emergency responders look for after a person hits his or her head, perhaps in a motor vehicle accident.

The symptoms, and their severity, may depend on how serious the traumatic brain injury (TBI) was. The Mayo Clinic's website reports that mild TBIs often have different symptoms than moderate to severe ones.

Pedestrian killed, 2 injured by out-of-control truck in L.A.

Pedestrian laws exist to help protect us from harm when we cross the street or otherwise walk near traffic. However, obeying those rules is not a guarantee of safety. Motorists whose conduct falls below the standard of care they owe the public can easily put pedestrians in harm’s way, with potentially tragic results.

In a recent example, a truck driver who allegedly ran a red light in the Koreatown neighborhood of Los Angeles struck three pedestrians, killing one of them and critically injuring the other two.

Proving causation is a major part of personal injury law

To succeed in court when seeking damages for a personal injury, a plaintiff must prove five things that have become the standard elements of this sort of civil claim. Generally, the standard of proof is by the preponderance of the evidence, which is considered to be significantly lower than the “beyond a reasonable doubt” standard used in criminal cases.

Cause is a major question in personal injury law. In fact, two of the five elements relate to cause. One of them is called “cause in fact,” while the other is known as “proximate cause.” They are related, but different elements that must be discussed separately.

Teen suffers brain injury while playing sumo game

Common ways that people in Los Angeles injure their brains can involve accidents on the road or at work, or contact sports like football. Of course, there are many more activities, some of them seemingly safe, that could lead to a traumatic brain injury -- if things go wrong due to someone else’s negligence.

A teenage girl’s life may have been altered forever because of injuries she suffered while playing an inflatable sumo wrestling game last year. The girl went to a school event that featured the chance to put on an inflatable suit and “wrestle” an opponent in a ring.

Los Angeles child killed in hit-and-run car accident

A horrific hit-and-run car accident took the life of a 4-year-old boy in the Florence district of Los Angeles recently. The driver turned himself in to police the next day, but will likely face charges of hit-and-run, among others.

The victim was in the care of his aunt when the car accident occurred. They were crossing the street, using the crosswalk and walking with the light. Two cars were waiting at the red light on the crossing street when, the California Highway Patrol said, a third vehicle tried to squeeze between them and go through the light.

Gold medalist Van Dyken-Rouen suffers spinal cord injury in crash

Some motor vehicle accident injuries fade with time. Others may never fully go away. No matter the physical condition you were in prior to the crash, you might have to adjust to months, years or a lifetime of disability if your spine is damaged.

Even elite athletes can suffer the effects of a spinal cord injury. Olympic swimming champion Amy Van Dyken-Rouen is an unfortunate example. She severed her spinal cord in June during an ATV accident. About two weeks later, she still had no feeling below her pubic bone, she said.