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Drive Safely: Your Life Depends On It

At least 41,000 highway fatalities have been recorded in the United States every year since 1993. Deaths by a car accident are usually caused by negligence, carelessness, and other factors such as drunk driving. Two famous people who met their untimely death by car accident include American Hollywood icon James Dean and Princess Diana.

Deaths on the road

James Dean was driving west on Highway 466 near Cholame, California. A 1950 Ford Tudor, moved from the opposite direction, attempted to take the fork onto the Highway 466 route (later called California State Route 46) and crossed into James Deans’ lane without seeing the other car. The two vehicles collided head-on. Dean was taken rushed to a hospital but was pronounced dead on arrival.

In 1997, Princess Diana died after a high-speed car accident in the Pon d’Alma road tunnel in Paris and Dodi Al-Fayed. The car they were riding on was trying to elude paparazzi. Their black Mercedes-Benz crashed into the thirteenth pillar of the tunnel. Princess Diana and Dodi Al-Fayed died of injuries sustained during the terrible car accident.

TIPS TO PREVENT CAR ACCIDENTS

If any good came out of these tragedies, more people became aware of the dangers of irresponsible driving. The news of James Dean and Princess Diana’s deaths came as a warning to people who were reckless with their driving. It also served as a caution to those who were careful in the way they drive because they were educated that even the most detailed drivers can get into accidents because of irresponsible motorists.

Even you are a careful driver, there are circumstances beyond your control. However, taking precautionary measures is a big help to avoid car accidents. Here are these tips on driving more safely:

  1. DON’T USE THE CELL PHONE WHILE DRIVING – Haven’t you heard from the news all because of this handy dandy gadget? You find yourself more than what you bargained for. Is that call that important? Can’t it wait? Indeed, you are bound to be distracted. It’s even more dangerous when you are using the expressway.
  2. DO A CAR CHECK REGULARLY- As much as possible, any car requires regular maintenance. Check your brakes, tires, mirrors, lights, and even the windshield wiper.
  3. SCAN AHEAD- Fix your eyes and scan for cars up to head.
  4. BE CONSIDERATE- When you slow down, put your flashers on to alert drivers behind you when they see you slowing down.
  5. DON’T ACT LIKE A RACE CAR DRIVER- If you act like “Mel Gibson” as the road warrior Mad Max, chances are you’re courting disaster
  6. KNOW YOUR CAR’S LIMITATIONS- Not all cars are exactly alike. The minivan doesn’t go so fast like an exotic sports car. There are performance limits for every vehicle. Know its capabilities.
  7. KEEP YOUR CAR IN GOOD SHAPE- Have a maintenance schedule.
  8. NIGHTTIME IS NOT BEST TIME- If you need to travel at a very long distance—nighttime is when your hazards usually happen. You are already in a state of mental and physical fatigue. Your line of vision might already decrease. Drive so carefully at this witching hour and keep your headlights on.
  9. WHEN YOU DRINK DON’T DRIVE AND VICE VERSA- It is a big mortal sin if you do…being drunk while driving is like you’re planning to have a date with “Death” so soon.
  10. KEEP YOUR CAR NEAT AND TIDY- A messy car is another one-way ticket to a road accident. Why? If you leave some objects around and it slides or rolls under your brake pedal, your attention was taken off the road, and what happens next, you lose control of the car.

Those tips might not be foolproof against road accidents, but nevertheless, prevention is better than none. A vehicle is one invention; man can’t live without. But if it is not used wisely, it might cause the one precious thing most people value here on earth: LIFE!

Perilous Driving: A Consider Florida’s Most Hazardous Highways

The sunshine state has one of the highest possible numbers of licensed drivers in the country. With its beaches, vibrant nightlife, and Disney World, the Sunlight State likewise stands apart as a leading tourist destination. What does that mean for Florida freeways? It implies they’re several of the most hazardous in the country.

Many research studies of National Freeway Web Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) information have identified several of Florida’s primary highways and interstates as some of America’s deadliest.

Check out this infographic and also Florida Car Crash Diagram from Brooks Law Group, a Florida Accident law firm, and also plan for a safe trip!

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Tips for Keeping Your Home Secure When You’re Away From Home

Keeping your family safe when you’re at or near your home is one thing. But keeping your home secure when you’re away from it is a whole nother matter. From going on a business trip to a family vacation, there are many reasons why you may need to leave your home for an extended period of time. 

It’s an unfortunate fact of life that property crime—particularly of empty homes—is something we need to be mindful of. If you think that it could never happen to you, consider that there were 7.2 million reported cases of property crime in the U.S. in 2018 alone. It’s worth noting that the actual number of incidents is likely to be far higher, given that some people choose not to report such incidents to the police.

Of course, this isn’t to say that you should never leave the house again! It just means that it pays to be “better safe than sorry.” If you’re after some useful precautionary measures that you can implement to secure your home when you’re away, keep reading.

Install a Home Security System

One of the best defenses you can take to prevent property crime is to install a comprehensive home security system and burglar alarms. We already discussed the importance of doing so in our article about home safety tips, so we won’t go into too much detail here.

The key thing to remember is that it’s well worth the time, effort, and expense of doing so, as in addition to helping prevent potential break ins, a home security system and burglar alarms can also provide invaluable footage of an incident, should the worst happen. 

Let Your Neighbors Know 

The simplest home security measures can sometimes be among the most effective. Case in point: telling your neighbors whenever you need to be away from home. “Alerting your neighbors to the fact that you’ll be away from home offers you the peace of mind that someone will be looking out for your best interests,” says Angela Stringfellow from Family Enthusiast.

“Of course, it’s vital to install a home security system. But having a neighbor keep an eye out for anything fishy could spell the difference between a potential break in and an actual one.” 

To this end, Stringfellow advises informing your neighbor of key details such as:

  • How long you’ll be gone for
  • Where you’ll be going
  • Your best contact number
  • How to work the alarms
  • What things to watch for
  • What they should do if they suspect something is amiss

“Be sure that they’re aware of what your precise situation will be while you’re gone. For example, if you’ve arranged for someone to check in on your house, be sure to tell them. You don’t want your neighbor accidentally mistaking them for a burglar!”

Secure Your Car

If you ever need to leave your car at home while you’re away, this tip is for you. After all, vehicle theft is no laughing matter. The FBI estimates that nearly 773,139 motor vehicle thefts were recorded and almost $6 billion was lost to this type of crime in 2017.

So if you don’t want your car to become a statistic, it’s advisable to start using a high-tech car alarm system. There are many benefits to doing so. For starters, these systems are specifically designed to protect your car from being stolen or broken into. Even if your car already comes with a solid alarm system, it’s wise to double up on protection given what’s at stake.

Another key benefit is that many insurance companies are willing to offer you a lower rate if your vehicle has an alarm system installed. One final benefit is that using a car alarm system will give you the peace of mind that your car will be secure, even when you’re thousands of miles away from it. 

Minimize the Signs That You’re Away from Home

The fact of the matter is that the more obvious it is that you’re away from home, the greater the likelihood that your home and/or car will become the target by burglars. So it’s logical, then, to minimize the signs that you’re away.

Fortunately, doing so couldn’t be easier. Here are a few tips we suggest that you put into action next time you have a trip of any kind planned:

  • Clear your mailbox before you leave
  • Ask your neighbor or a friend to collect your mail
  • Mow your lawn
  • Keep a few lights on in your house
  • Don’t advertise your trip on social media 
  • Don’t make it obvious that you’re going away on your answering machine message

Keep Your Family Safe With These Home Safety Tips

Keeping your family safe at home—particularly when you’re spending considerably more time there than usual—is no doubt a major concern at the top of your mind. So what is the best way to keep your family safe? The short answer is to take proactive—rather than reactive—home safety measures.

To do so, you will need to ensure that your home is equipped with the right items to prevent and/or promptly respond to any incidents. If you are looking for some tips to help you get started, consult our expert home safety tips below.

Have the Right Supplies on Hand

When you are faced with an accident or emergency at home, you need to have the right supplies on hand in order to react quickly and effectively. At minimum, you should have a well-stocked first aid kit on hand. It should feature all of the essentials you could need, such as gauze, bandages, tweezers, disinfectant, a first aid guide, and so on.

However, we suggest going a step further. After all, a first aid kit will allow you to attend to certain wounds and accidents, but not much else more. It’s well worth putting together an emergency food kit as well as a general emergency survival kit.

These kits are designed to ensure you and your family have access to adequate supply of food and other essential items should a natural disaster strike. Hopefully, you will never need to confront such a situation. But if you do, you will no doubt be thankful to have made the effort to purchase such essentials.

Consider Installing Home Security Cameras and Burglar Alarms

Installing home security cameras and burglar alarms is generally considered a wise idea for a couple of reasons. Depending on how visible your home security camera and burglar alarms are, their mere presence may be enough to dissuade a potential break-in or other unsavory incidents from occurring.

Home security cameras will also record footage that you may be able to use to catch an offender or build a case against them. Meanwhile, burglar alarms will alert you and/or the police if anything sets them off.

A final reason that you may wish to install them is due to the peace of mind they will likely provide your family.

(Speaking of alarms, make sure that you have installed fire alarms throughout your house and that they’re all in working order!)

Devise a Safety Plan That Outlines What to Do in the Event of an Emergency 

One of the most practical things you can do to keep your family safe is to ensure everyone is on the same page about what to do in the event of an emergency. This is particularly important to do if you have young children, who are more likely to panic when faced with a confronting situation.

The easiest way to go about this is to establish a safety plan for the whole household to follow. We recommend taking a read of the Department of Homeland Security’s comprehensive guide to making a family safety plan. It explains step-by-step how to create one, and usefully highlights a number of important considerations to keep in mind when doing so.

Once you’ve finalized your family’s unique safety plan, print out a copy for each family member to read and familiarize themselves with. Keep multiple copies of the plan throughout your house so it’s always easily accessible. Be sure to let your children know that they can approach you at any time if they need you to reiterate the plan or answer any questions they have about it. 

Don’t Forget to Make Plans For Your Pet

When you start putting home safety plans into place, it can be easy to let some vital considerations slip your mind. One of the most common ones that people forget about is their pets.

So what can you do to ensure your four-legged friends are also accounted for? We suggest two main things. Firstly, prepare an emergency kit just for your pet. Make sure to include items such as additional food, medication, emergency numbers, and any other emergency supplies that could come in handy in the event of a disaster.

Secondly, consider taking out pet insurance. Pet insurance is just like normal insurance, only it focuses solely on your pet. Each pet insurance company offers different levels of coverage and rates, so be sure to compare at least a few before committing to one. The reason pet insurance is worthwhile is because it gives you the peace of mind that should something happen to your pet, the insurance will partly or wholly cover their treatment. 

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Suing Someone for Sexual Assault

There are no two victims of sexual assault with the same experience, just as there is no “typical victim” in these crimes. Anyone can be targeted for rape or sexual assault. Victims include men, women and children of all ages. Survivors of these crimes suffer long-term physical, mental and emotional trauma that affects their lives and those of their families.

To a rape victim, recovery may seem impossible at first. It takes work for these victims to return to some normalcy in daily life and they need support from various areas in order to do so. For many, empowerment is gained in the Arizona criminal courts through the state’s tough stance on these types of crimes. For others, Arizona’s civil courts provide a means of empowerment by allowing the victim to initiate their own legal case against their criminal perpetrator.

Civil Accountability for Sexual Assault or Rape

It may seem impossible to fully financially compensate for the emotional, mental and physical pain of sexual assault or rape. But it is possible to gain a sense of vindication and closure for trauma through Arizona civil courts. At the same time, you can be financially compensated for the injuries you suffered and other damages, to help you regain footing in your life. Attorneys with experience in representation of sexual assault victims are able to help these victims hold criminals accountable for their actions.

There are statutes of limitations that apply to civil cases after sexual assault, rape or other crimes. This is why contacting an attorney becomes urgent after a sexual assault has occurred. You are limited in how much time you have to file a claim against your offender.

When you decide to talk to the personal injury lawyers of Cantor Crane, you will receive a free, no-obligation consultation regarding your case. This private, confidential consultation will allow you to talk with us about your needs, just as we are able to inform you of steps we can take to provide the closure and compensation that you deserve.

Who can be held accountable in civil court, for a sexual assault or rape?

Beyond the obvious offender, you may be able to hold other parties accountable for your sexual assault, as well. Some examples of others who may also be responsible include property owners who may have inadvertently provided a place for your crime to occur. By not ensuring adequate lighting or security on their property, they are not meeting their obligation of reasonable care on their premises.

When you speak with the sex assault lawyers of Cantor Crane, you will be able to gain some understanding of how a claim for monetary compensation can be pursued. But due to statutes of limitations, it is critical that you request a consultation as soon as possible.

Why file a civil case for sexual assault or rape?

Victims of sexual assault suffer injuries that are even difficult to overcome after a long period of time. By pursuing a civil case, these victims can gain power and a voice that the criminal case does not provide. It also allows victims to gain some compensation for the alterations made to the course of their lives due to these heinous crimes.

One issue experienced by most sexual assault victims is post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). PTSD is a major problem and brings depression, anxiety, and even the possibility of suicide under an umbrella of many disorder symptoms. The suffering that PTSD causes makes it even more important for victims to reach out to a sex crimes attorney as soon as possible. By developing and filing a civil case, the victim can start using resulting empowerment and strength to overcome the aftereffects of their sexual assault.

Sexual assault victims are:

  • 26 times more likely to abuse drugs
  • 13 times more likely to abuse alcohol
  • Six times more likely to suffer PTSD
  • Four times more likely to commit suicide
  • Three times more likely to have depression

Civil cases provide compensation for all of the things that a victim of sexual assault experiences as losses and injuries. While a civil case cannot erase all of the damage of rape or sexual assault, it can provide financial means to recover, in addition to the much-needed closure gained from having a voice against the offender in court.

Compensation for the following losses and injuries can be gained through a well-formed civil claim:

  • Physical injuries
  • Post-traumatic stress disorder and associated symptoms, including crippling triggers
  • Insomnia, nightmares and other sleep disorders
  • Fear and anxiety in public places or social settings
  • Attention deficit disorder or inability to concentrate on school or work
  • Lost motivation in work and personal life
  • Termination from employment or school expulsion
  • Substance abuse or addiction
  • Withdrawing from previously enjoyed activities
  • Significant expenses – medical, psychological, relocation
  • Intimacy difficulties, sexual and emotional
  • Problems in relationships or becoming close to others
  • Sexually transmitted viruses or other diseases

Use Civil Laws to Rebuild Your Life after Sexual Assault or Rape

Experienced representation by an attorney willing to fight for your rights is an important part of your healing from sexual assault or rape. Although you have suffered damages that may never heal, you can use civil courts as they were intended, to be heard and stand up against your offender. Through a civil claim, you can gain compensation through a settlement designed to help you recover and start fresh.

Dangerous Dogs

“Detroit Man Suffers Catastrophic Injuries from dogs in Pit Bull Pack Attack.” shrieked the Detroit Free Press headline.

For those of us who love dogs (and, I suppose, for those who fear them), the headline was typical of the sort of overblown rhetoric the mainstream press uses to attract new readers and keep old ones coming back. After all, nothing except sex sells as well as blood and butchery in today’s media-saturated world.   

Granted, it was a horrific attack. More than a dozen pit bulls, eight of which were adult, attacked Steve Constantine, 50, after he had offered to help feed them. The owner, Derrick Felton, 61, accepted Constantine’s help but reportedly ran away after the attack started. Both Felton and his mother, the owner of the home, are named in Constantine’s lawsuit.

Nature vs. Nurture

The dogs, some of whom were puppies, were not pets. They were raised like factory-farmed animals, struck and/or deprived of food for barking and growling, and given little or no friendly contact with any human other than Felton, who could hardly be described as friendly.

Sadly, meanness is not the pit bull’s natural behavior. Nor is it the nature of any of the “bully breeds”, whether pit, Cane Corso, Presa Canario, American Staffordshire terrier, the American pit bull terrier, the boxer, the bulldog, or the Boston terrier. In fact, in England, during the Victorian Era (1837–1901), pit bulls were kept as family pets because they were considered “nanny dogs” (i.e., good babysitters). Illustrations of family life from that period often show the pit bull laying on the floor next to its charge, a chubby baby in a long, white gown.

Pit bulls, known as “pitties” to their human fans, naturally show an inordinate degree of protectiveness when raised in human families, by people who love them. Pit bulls are charming, boisterous, a little goofy, often highly intelligent, and – if raised properly – very friendly. This means they do not make the best guard dogs, except as “inside” dogs protecting their home and family.

Raising them like feral children leads to all kinds of misbehavior. In Constantine’s case, it meant losing an arm and a leg. Training them to fight other dogs, as Felton was apparently doing, turns naturally affectionate pitties into monsters.

Dogs as Family

The pit bull’s strong protective instinct goes back a long way, into the dawn of man’s relationship with canines.

“That instinct, in fact, is the origin of the family unit,” according to animal behaviorists, who point out that canines have been guarding their human families for at least 15,000 years. (The only question that remains is, who domesticated whom?)

Dogs as Protection

Dogs, and specifically pit bulls, are even becoming the favorite among those concerned with rising crime.

Whether inner city or rural isolation, nothing is quite as effective as a barking dog inside the premises to discourage every type of mayhem, from the average burglar to the crazed drug addict.

Pit bulls are also the most sensible solution. A gun can fall into the wrong hands, and kill the wrong person(s). A knife is almost ineffectual against a determined assailant, but a pittie will not be confused by who is the aggressor, where to sink those impressive teeth, or even whether one’s human family is worth dying for.

As for a pit bull’s ability to protect, look no further than the wide jaw and well developed temporalis muscles that create the pit bull’s characteristic cheek bulge and seriously impressive bite force, enabling it to bite firmly and hang on virtually forever.  

Dogs as Companions

Pit bulls are very good companions. In fact, in tests run by the American Temperament Test Society, Inc., or ATTS, pitties scored above some dog breeds traditionally seen as “friendly”

The ATTS test, which rates various characteristics like aggression, friendliness, protectiveness (towards owners or handlers), shyness, stability, and the extent to which a dog will go to protect itself, is the benchmark standard for canine domesticity. Higher scores indicate lower sociability. To date, 728 out of 839 American Pit bull Terriers scored below the average. Well below Chihuahuas, for example, and terriers.

By comparison, the tiny, fluffy Bichon Frise scored 76.7 percent – scores that don’t surprise pit bull owners, who are constant witness to the affectionate, sometimes silly, but always conscientious guard-dog attitude of their pitties.

Most bites Are the Result of Misunderstandings

Another factor – and one that can only be corrected by professional training – is the pit bull’s protective instinct. The fact is, the majority of dog bites occur among children aged 1 to 10 years old.

The cause is simple. Usually, the pit bull guardian misinterpreted  a hug from your child’s friend as aggressive behavior. This can happen with any breed, but the pit bull’s bite force can turn a mishap into a tragedy.

Moreover, if your pittie bites, you may have a more difficult time defending it, and yourself, simply because of the pit bull’s undeserved reputation. In fact, in some cities and municipalities, your pitty may actually be illegal. If so, and even if you didn’t know it, you will need the services of a good law firm.

You can eliminate some of this danger, notes the legal website CK Law, by training both your dog and your child, and by supervising those times when your child, his or her friends, and your dog are in the same room. Because accidents happen no matter how careful you are.