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dooring accidentCyclists and bikers who ride in town are at constant risk of “doorings” – the accident that happens when a vehicle door opens unexpectedly in front of them, causing a collision. Doorings can result in death and severe injuries when riders fall over their handlebars or collide with the open door. They are one of the most common and dangerous hazards cyclists and bikers face in urban riding conditions.

In this blog post, we discuss how doorings happen, how riders and drivers can take steps to prevent them, and what to do if you’ve been injured in a dooring accident.

How Doorings Happen

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Boy ScoutsThe Boys Scouts of America swear an oath to help other people at all times. However, the organization has not always done its best at helping its own young members. Many instances of sexual abuse by troop leaders and other adult chaperones have surfaced, and the concerns of parents of potential Boy Scouts have rightfully increased in recent years. Recently, former Boy Scouts filed 15 lawsuits in Chicago courts regarding sexual abuse of members of a Burbank, Illinois, troop.

The organization just announced one response to such concerns—increased background checks and additional requirements for adults who supervise overnight excursions. Before June 1, troop leaders and other registered volunteers had to undergo background checks and complete a training course before volunteering. Now, the Boy Scouts require background checks and training for any adult who is chaperoning a trip that lasts at least 72 hours, which includes parents of scouts on the excursion.

The training course is a one-hour online session about youth protection. It covers protecting minors from dangers such as sexual molestation, especially during overnight activities such as camping trips, which can get particularly high-risk. This requirement only applies to Boy Scout troops, however, and not to Cub Scouts, who are usually younger than 11.

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Civil Claims Filed by Gymnasts against Larry NassarWhen you think of a personal injury lawsuit, you may initially think of a case arising from a car accident or another type of accidental injury. However, not all injury cases stem from accidents. Some cases involve allegations of sexual abuse of minors—for example the numerous high-profile sexual abuse claims against the Boy Scouts and the Catholic Archdiocese of Chicago.

Recently, many elite USA gymnasts came forward and reported a widespread sexual abuse scandal involving a trainer team doctor based out of Michigan State University (MSU), Larry Nassar. Hundreds of gymnasts testified that Nassar sexual molested them under the guise of “medical treatment.” He was the primary physician for elite gymnasts competing for the USA and MSU, so many gymnasts had to visit him and suffer abuse over and over again for years.

Nassar was convicted of numerous counts of criminal sexual conduct and the court sentenced him to 40 to 175 years in prison.

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Pedestrian Traumatic Brain InjuriesApproximately one million people in the United States are treated for a traumatic brain injury  (TBI) each year, and an estimated 5.3 million people live with a TBI-related disability. Motor vehicle accidents are a leading cause of TBI, particularly when cars strike pedestrians. Unlike broken bones or cuts, traumatic brain injuries may be permanent.

What Is a Traumatic Brain Injury?

A traumatic brain injury is most often caused by a blow or jolt to the head. An object that penetrates the brain tissue can also cause a TBI.

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Chicago Personal Injury AttorneyRoad construction seems to be never-ending in Chicago. Both the Chicago Department of Transportation (CDOT) and the Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) have a constant stream of projects on roads and highways around the city, especially during the warmer months. Road work can cause delays and frustration among drivers, especially due to lane closures. However, this work is necessary to ensure our streets are as safe and efficient as possible for all Chicago motorists.

While road construction happens to keep us safe, road work zones are also common locations for traffic accidents. Cars can crash into one another or into members of a construction crew, and serious injuries may result. Despite increased penalties for traffic violations in work zones, as well as safety initiatives for the public, road work zone accidents continue to occur with surprising frequency. In fact, according to IDOT, 6,741 work zone crashes took place in the state of Illinois during 2016, the most recent year for which data is available. That comes out to an average of nearly 18.5 construction zone accidents per day!

At Abels & Annes, P.C., we are committed to representing the rights of people injured in construction zone accidents. To schedule a free consultation with a Chicago personal injury attorney, call our office today at 312-924-7575 or contact us online.

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Car Accident Lawyer ChicagoThe Chicago Department of Transportation released the traffic accident statistics for 2017, and they are not good news. The number of fatalities due to traffic crashes sharply increased from 2016 to 2017, indicating that the streets of Chicago are getting more dangerous. These dangers are not due to crime, but due to the everyday actions of drivers. The following are some statistics:

  • The total number of traffic-related fatalities in 2017 was 132, an increase from 119 in 2016
  • The number of occupants of cars who died in 2017 was 80, up from 63 in 2016
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Construction Accidents ChicagoScaffolding is an integral part of many construction sites, elevating workers and materials during construction, maintenance, or repair projects. If you walk around downtown Chicago for just a few minutes, you will almost certainly see scaffolding on dozens of buildings. Unfortunately, when these structures fail, workers can sustain extremely serious injuries, including some that can result in permanent disabilities and long-term medical complications. Fortunately for people who are injured in scaffolding collapse accidents, Illinois law may entitle them to benefits or compensation for their injuries and other losses.

At Abels & Annes, P.C., we are dedicated to helping people injured in and around construction sites recover compensation. We thoroughly evaluate every case we handle and make sure that our clients get the full and fair value of their claim. To schedule a free case evaluation with a personal injury attorney in Chicago, call our office today at (312) 924-7575 or send us an email through our online contact form.

Scaffolding Collapse Accidents Can Occur for a Number of Reasons

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Self-Driving Car Accident LawyersAutonomous and semi-autonomous vehicle technology has been making waves in the auto industry for a few years. From self-driving Ubers to self-driving commercial semi-trucks, many different companies are developing all types of vehicles with various features that eliminate the need for human operation. Not all self-driving cars are fully autonomous, however, as some vehicles have technologies that release human responsibility to varying degrees. One particular semi-autonomous vehicle has recently been in the news due to serious crashes while using the technology.

Tesla Under Investigation

Two models of Teslathe Model S and the Model Xare under investigation due to two separate crashes that occurred while the autopilot feature was engaged. Contrary to what you may believe, the autopilot feature is not fully autonomous and does not let a driver completely off the hook.

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Bus Accident Lawyers ChicagoCharter buses are convenient in many situations. Groups may rent a large bus to all travel together on excursions, to compete in athletic events, for social gatherings such as weddings, and more. Some people may also purchase tickets to ride charter buses as a form of long-distance transportation, as it can be more economical than flying, driving, or taking a train. While bus travel is known to be relatively safe, about 67,000 bus accidents happen each year, as reported by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA). If a bus accident causes you injuries, it is important to recognize the potential causes of the crash to determine liability for your injury-related losses.

Bus Driver Errors

While not every bus accident is the fault of the bus driver, driver error is a common cause of crashes and passenger injuries. Buses are commercial vehicles, so every driver must have a valid commercial drivers license (CDL) in order to operate any type of bus. Obtaining such a license involves taking a written test, passing a driving skills test, passing a medical examination, among other steps.

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Bike Accident Lawyers ChicagoThe streets of Chicago can be chaotic, with streams of cars and pedestrians heading in every direction at nearly every hour of the day. Because of parking difficulties and often deadlocked traffic, many people choose to ride their bikes around the city. Biking is convenient and economical, but it can also be a dangerous prospect, especially in a city like Chicago.

The Chicago Department of Transportation recognizes the risks of biking in Chicago, particularly for children. Kids may not be aware of how to safely ride their bikes and parents may not understand how to fully teach their children. To help keep kids safe, the DOT provides information and guidance about bicycle safety for children. The following are some of the tips provided in these helpful materials.

When Riding on the Sidewalk