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The Top 6 Causes of Car Accidents

Car accidents kill and severely injure millions of people each year, making our roads and highways some of the most dangerous places. Recognizing the various causes of these accidents is one simple step we can take toward preventing future tragedies. Here are a few of the most common causes:


1. Speeding

Ignoring the speed limit is one of the easiest ways to cause an accident. Traveling at higher speeds increases your vehicle's braking distance, the time it takes for your car to stop completely after you've hit the brakes. Speeding also increases the impact of the crash, which can result in more severe injuries or even death.


2. Drunk Driving

Alcohol reduces your concentration and coordination, slows your response time, and impairs your judgement, all of which are things necessary to safely operate a vehicle. Never get behind the wheel if your BAC is 0.08% or higher.


3. Distractions

Collisions caused by distracted driving are on the rise. One of today's biggest driving distractions is cellphones, which accounted for an estimated 1.5 million car accidents in 2017.


4. Adverse Weather Conditions

Rain, snow, and ice can cause slick roads and make it difficult to see. Although wintry weather is often most hazardous, even things such as sun glare and high winds can impact driving.


5. Drowsy Driving

Sleep is a necessity, especially before getting behind the wheel. Drowsy driving can be equivalent to driving drunk, as it also impacts your ability to concentrate, your reaction time, and your decision-making skills.


6. Unsafe Lane Changes

An accident can occur when a driver changes lanes without checking their blind spot or using their turn signal. Merging onto the highway without paying attention to oncoming cars or jerking into the other lane are often to blame for these types of crashes.


If you or someone you know has been injured in a car accident due to someone else's negligence, you deserve the proper compensation. Call McCarron Law Firm today at 309-820-1010 or visit us online to schedule an appointment for a free consultation. 

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The Top 4 Back Injuries Caused By Car Accidents


Car accidents occur every day, many of which result in serious injuries. Back injuries rank among the top injuries sustained in these types of accidents, and can significantly impact a person's everyday life. Here are a few of the most common:


1. Herniated Discs

Discs are rubbery cushions that sit between the vertebrae. The force of a collision can easily cause these discs to shift, which can irritate nerves and result in pain, numbness, and weakness in the limbs.


2. Spondylolisthesis

This condition occurs when the spine slips out of its proper place and onto the bone beneath it. This can cause a variety of symptoms including numbness, pain, weakness, and difficulty walking, depending on the location of the displaced vertebrae.


3. Spinal Fracture

Spinal fractures often occur when the seat belt fails to secure the body properly. Often, these injuries are sustained when the lower body is secured, but the upper body is jostled around. There are many different types of spinal fractures, but burst fractures are the most common in car accidents. In a burst fracture, the vertebrae are crushed and fractured in multiple places due to severe trauma.


4. Spinal Cord Injury

This injury occurs when the vertebrae are broken or dislocated, causing pieces of the vertebrae to cut into cord tissue or compress the nerves that carry signals to the brain. Depending on the severity, this injury can result in life-long paralysis and neurological impairments such as respiratory, urinary, and gastrointestinal issues.


Keep in mind that most back pain does not always appear right away. Endorphins released after a collision can temporarily mask the pain, so it's important to look out for any discomfort following your accident. Be sure to visit your doctor if you experience even the slightest amount of pain.


Have you sustained a back injury or another severe injury in a car accident? You may be entitled to compensation. Joe McCarron is here to fight for you, and he's available 24/7. Don't wait, don't worry. Call today at 309-820-1010 or visit online to schedule an appointment.

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Sharing the Road: Safe Driving With Semis

Nearly 80% of all U.S. cargo is transported by trucks. No wonder you see them everywhere! Driving alongside semi-trucks is a daily reality that requires a great deal of caution for both car and truck drivers. Here are a few tips to stay safe while sharing the road with 18-wheelers:


1. Give Them Space.

Larger vehicles call for more space, especially since they need more time and distance to stop. Pass semis quickly and carefully, making sure that you can see the entire truck in your rearview before moving over into the right lane. Tire blowouts and weather conditions such as high winds, rain, and ice also require drivers to give trucks an extra amount of space.


2. Know the No-Zones.

Due to their massive size, trucks have several blind spots where small cars can easily disappear. Beware of driving directly in the front, rear, and both sides of the trailer, as these areas are the most dangerous. One rule of thumb for safe driving with semis is if you can't see the truck driver's face in their side mirror, they can't see you either.


3. Watch Out For Turns.

Stay as far away as possible when a truck is making a wide turn. When turning, a truck driver often must first swing the opposite direction in order to successfully make the turn. Truck drivers often cannot see nearby vehicles during these turns, so it's critical for other drivers to use the utmost caution and give them the space they need.


4. Turn Off the Brights.

Don't use your bright headlights when driving near a truck at night. Their extra large side mirrors reflect this light more so than a regular car's mirrors. This can temporarily blind the driver and potentially cause an accident.


If you or someone you know has sustained a severe injury in a truck accident, McCarron Law Firm is here to help. In these situations, it's critical to have an accomplished lawyer on your side to obtain the compensation you deserve. Call us 24/7 at 309-820-1010 or schedule an appointment with us online. 

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National Motorcycle Week: 10 Tips for New Riders

If you're new to the motorcycle gang, chances are you want to ride in style. There are plenty of things to keep in mind before that first ride. Follow these tips to make sure you're ready to hit the road:


1. Adjust your mirrors before you hit the gas.

Adjusting mirrors on a motorcycle often requires a wrench, so it's important to make necessary adjustments prior to riding.


2. Know your gas tank.

Not all bikes have fuel gauges, so it's important to understand your bike's MPG and fuel capacity.


3. Beware of chrome.

Remember that chrome gets extremely hot in the sun, so if you're riding with chrome grips, you'll want to wear armored gloves.


4. Dress for the ride.

It's important to dress in layers to protect your body if you fall. Even if it's a hot day, highways speeds can make it feel ten degrees less than the actual temperature.


5. Review your state's operator manual.

Check out the Illinois manual here for answers to common motorcycle questions.


6. Drive defensively.

Always be on the lookout when sharing the road with other motor vehicles, especially at intersections.


7. Avoid road hazards.

Rocks, pot-holes, and other objects in the road may be barely noticeable in a car, but they can spell serious trouble for a motorcycle if hit head-on.


8. Use your head by protecting it.

Wearing a helmet is the smartest thing you can do to avoid sustaining a serious or fatal brain injury.


9. Practice turning.

Turning in a motorcycle requires you to shift your body weight and lean into the turn, referred to as "counter steering." Make sure you know how to do this safely.


10. Know how to stop.

Stopping a two-wheeler takes physical balance, as opposed to a car or truck. It's important to practice stopping properly.


Practicing motorcycle safety can significantly decrease the risk of an accident. If you or someone you know has sustained a serious injury in a motorcycle accident, you may be entitled to compensation. Call McCarron Law Firm today at 309-820-1010 or visit us online to schedule an appointment.

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Personal Injury Myths: 4 Things You Need to Know


Many have preconceived ideas about personal injury lawsuits, most of which are seldom true. It's always best to know the facts when you sustain an injury in an accident and seek a lawyer's assistance as necessary. That's why we're here to debunk a few myths regarding personal injury law:


1. Having insurance erases the need for a lawyer.

False.


You may have insurance to help cover medical bills and other costs. It's important to remember that insurance companies are "for-profit" corporations. The more money that they pay out in claims, the less profit they make. Often, they will try to settle quickly, offering amounts that are not appropriate for the situation, the injury, the time one has to take off of work, or the medical bills that follow. An attorney can help you avoid this and obtain the compensation you rightfully deserve.


2. You can file a claim at any time.

False.


Each state has statutes of limitations that specify the deadlines of when you can file your claim. The general time ranges from one to six years, but it's best to seek a lawyer's expertise as soon as possible after the accident.


3. Personal injury cases take forever to settle.

False.


Some are under the impression that these cases are incredibly time-consuming. However, 95% of personal injury cases are settled outside of court as soon as treatment is completed and all bills are compiled. Sometimes delays are a result of the insurance company's attempt to avoid payment.


4. Hiring an attorney will be too expensive.

False.


Most personal injury attorneys accept injury cases on a contingency-fee basis, meaning that you do not owe them anything unless they acquire compensation for you.


Having an attorney can help you arrive at a fair settlement for your situation and get you the compensation you deserve. Joe McCarron is here for you 24/7 to guide you through the process. Don't wait, don't worry. Call McCarron Law Firm at 309-820-1010 or visit us online to schedule an appointment. 

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