How to help your teenager be a better driver and help reduce Ottawa accidents and personal injuries.

Tips for teenage drivers

David Hollingsworth is a personal injury lawyer in Ottawa Ontario.

Car accidents are the leading cause of death in teenagers and sadly are on the rise. We can’t have this . The Ottawa Sun published some tips for teenage drivers . The tips originally came from FORD and the Ford Driving Skills for Life program. This program is aimed at helping parents help new teenage drivers and helping them be safe drivers. Some of the best tips were as follows:

1.Focus on driving. Watch the road and keep your hands on the wheel.

2.Always use your seatbelts and make sure your passengers buckle up as well.

3. Obey speed limits. They are there for a reason.

4. Do not talk, text or use any non-hands free device while driving. That;s how people die.

5. Always allow enough room between you and the next vehicle.

6. Be aware of road hazards: animals, potholes and other drivers.

7. Obey all driving laws. This includes piling too many people in the car etc..

8. Never drink and drive. There is always a better, safer alternative. Find one !

All of these seem obvious, but please take a moment and review or have your teenager read them, AGAIN. It will never hurt.  We have to be able to empower our teenage drivers and make sure they have the tools they need to be out on the roads safely. Please, we owe it to them. As parents, we won’t always be in the car with our children. That is why it is imperative that we teach them and give them the tools to safely handle a vehicle. It might just be one of the most valuable lessons you ever taught your child.

For over a decade, we have been Ottawa injury lawyers helping Ontario accident victims and specializing in Ontario personal injury law and  insurance claims.

 


Ottawa Lawyers: Have you been in an Ottawa Accident ? What you do to report an accident in Ottawa.

Ottawa Accident ? How to report an accident in Ottawa.

The Ottawa Police services has a comprehensive website with valuable information for Ottawa residents. I stumbled across their accident reporting information and thought I’d share it with you.

  • A police report is not required when damage to all vehicles is under $1,000.
  • If there are personal injuries and the vehicle(s) cannot be driven,  9-1-1 should be contacted.
  • If there are no personal injuries, but the vehicle(s) cannot be driven, call 613-230-6211
  • If the vehicle(s) can be safely driven and there are no personal injuries, drive all vehicles to the same Police Station and  file an accident report. Important to note: Accident reports cannot be taken over the phone.

The Ottawa Police Collision Investigation Unit …

is responsible for investigating all fatal and serious life threatening motor accidents.  They also investigate hit and run/ fail to remain accidents.

If in doubt call the police and ask them what to do.Your next call may be to an Ottawa personal injury lawyer. They can advise you whether or not you may need a lawyer and whether its best to let them speak with your insurance company.  Make sure to gather as much evidence as you can. Take pictures, write down the sequence of events in as much detail as possible.  Most of all, take care of yourself first. Ensure you are safe and that you are not injured. If you think you might be seek medical attention immediately. The rest can wait.

 


Ottawa Personal Injury Lawyer David Hollingsworth: Tips for avoiding Ottawa bicycle accidents,

Ottawa Bicycle Accident Lawyers…Sadly, 200 cycling accidents happen in Ottawa every year.  Citizens for Safe Cycling is promoting bike education throughout Mountain Equipment Co-op’s Bikefest at LeBreton Flats tomorrow. In 2010, 5 Ottawa cyclists died on their bicycles and cyclists in Ottawa are 10 times more likely to be involved in an accident than cars. Citizens for Safe Cycling explained one of the most common accidents on Ottawa’s roads is when drivers make a right turn without looking for cyclists and cut them off.

The following tips were provided by Citizens for Safe Cycling when it comes to safe cycling in Ottawa:

Obey the law: red lights, stop signs and the rules of the road.

 Don’t ride on sidewalks.

 Don’t ride the wrong way down a one-way street.

Signal: “Be sure to signal all of your intentions in advance, that way motorists and other cyclists will know what you’re doing.”

Be aware: Give yourself space to maneuver and shoulder check to make sure you know where the other vehicles are.

Prepare your ride: Wear a helmet.  Make sure your bike is in good condition.

Know your route: Use Ottawa’s bike maps

MEC Bikefest is happening tomorrow at LeBreton Flats from 11 am to 4pm with exhibitor displays, bike demos, safety education, workshops and family fun.

Have fun and safe cycling….

-Ottawa Personal Injury Lawyer David Hollingsworth

 


Ottawa Bicycle Accident Lawyer David Hollingsworth on Ottawa cycling safety.

Ottawa Bicycle Accident Lawyer David Hollingsworth.. I recently found a great website : Citizens for Safe Cycling . It’s a website dedicated to Ottawa cyclists.  It is filled with all sorts of information that relate to Ottawa bicycle safety, events for Ottawa cyclists and Ottawa cycling news and projects.  One of the articles on the site dealt with cyclists getting “doored”. The following are tips I found on this site for both Ottawa drivers and Ottawa cyclists on avoiding a cycling accident.

Ottawa Cyclists:

One of the safest ways to avoid an accident is to ride your bicycle at least one metre away from other vehicles. That is the best way to prevent getting injured by having a door open in your face. A car door can spring open in a second. If a cyclist is passing by at that very moment, it’s almost impossible avoiding being hit by the door, resulting in you. This type of bicycle accident is far to common in Ottawa and a major cause of downtown cycling accidents. These cycling accidents can be avoided.

Ottawa drivers and Ottawa cycling accidents:

Everyone is responsible on the road.  As a driver, you are responsible for checking for oncoming  traffic. This includes cyclists. They are much smaller than a car and therefore harder to see; however, before opening your car door, you must thoroughly check for any oncoming traffic.  If you fail to do so and it results in an accident, you will be charged under section 165 of the Highway Traffic Act.

Ottawa cyclists and Ottawa cycling accidents:  

The best way to avoid a cycling accident is to remain out of the door zone which about one metre away from a car. Also cyclist should avoid passing on the right if there’s not enough space to pass. Cyclist should always use  extra space in the lane in order to stay away from the cars, even if it means that you hold up traffic or force them to pass you outside of the lane. If you need to move left to do this, remember to always signal and shoulder check first.

It’s practically impossible for cyclists to see ahead of time whether a vehicle door is going  to open. Tinted windows and high headrests make it extremely difficult to see from behind if a car is occupied, and a door could fly open at any given moment.

Cycling is such a great activity and means of transportation around Ottawa.  Let’s all work to gether to reduce the number of Ottawa cycling accidents and deaths related to cycling accidents this spring and summer. Happy and safe cycling Ottawa !

  


How to prevent motorcycle accidents..Ottawa lawyer David Hollingsworth

Ottawa Ontario Personal Injury Lawyer…www.ottawainjury.ca  It’s that time of year again when we will start seeing more and more motorcycles on our Ontario roads. Motorcycle drivers are much less protected on their vehicles and therefore need to take all safety steps possible to prevent accidents and personal injury. As well, all drivers need to be aware that we share our Ontario roads with motorcycles, bicycles and other vehicles. 

Thankfully Transport Canada has reported that the rate of deaths related to motor vehicle is slowly declining; however, the rate of motorcycle fatalities is on the rise. There are many possible reasons why this may be so.  There may be more motorcycles on the roads. Motorcycle riders between the ages of 45 to 54 are the most common ages amongst motorcycle drivers.

Ontario motorcycle helmet use has improved. Unfortunately3.1 % of motorcycle riders still drive their motorcycles without one. Head injuries are still the leading cause of deaths involving motorcycle accidents and motorcycle drivers without a helmet are 40% more likely to suffer a fatal head injury, and also 15% more likely to suffer serious personal injuries. A study that was previously done indicated that helmets saved 1,800 lives of motorcycle riders involved in accidents in 2007.

Please drive and ride safely  …

—-The Ottawa Injury Lawyer Blog is written regularly by Ottawa Ontario personal injury lawyer David Hollingsworth. The Ottawa Injury Lawyer Blog reports on accidents in eastern Ontario, personal injury issues, local Ottawa news and events and various news that relates to Ottawa, accidents and personal injury. Visit  www.ottawainjury.ca for more information.

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Ottawa Ontario Motorcycle Accident Lawyer David Hollingsworth


Ottawa cycling- How to avoid a child bicyle accident – Ottawa lawyer David Hollingsworth

Ottawa Injury Lawyer David Hollingsworth www.ottawainjury.ca  Hopefully that gorgeous warm Ottawa weather we had last week will be back very soon.  When the warm weather comes back so will the many children on their bicycles.  It’s important to remember that these little ones haven’t formally been taught the “rules of the road”.  I have a few reminders here for you to read and discuss with your child.  I also wanted to remind us all to slow down when approaching these little guys on back.  some of them are just learning to drive a bicycle and could veer off the sidewalk at any time.  Some cyclists are also just learning the rules when it comes to sharing the road.  Please be patient and extra cautious…Enjoy this upcoming spring Ottawa !

Child Cycling Safety :

Always obey all street signs and signals.

-Always walk your bicycle while crossing the street.
-Cross the street at the corners only
 -Do not drive a bicycle after dark or in dangerous weather.
-Check carefully..STOP and look to the left, to the right and then the left again before entering traffic
-Use the right-hand side of the road, and ride in the same direction as traffic. don’t double up with your friend. —Ride your bicycle single file.
-Use bicycle safety hand signals.

-Always wear bright coloured clothing and reflective clothing and accessories so cars can see you.
-Always wear a helmet and make sure it fits well.

Most of all use common safe and cycle safely !

—-The Ottawa Injury Lawyer Blog is written regularly by Ottawa Ontario personal injury lawyer David Hollingsworth. The Ottawa Injury Lawyer Blog reports on accidents in eastern Ontario, personal injury issues, local Ottawa news and events and various news that relates to Ottawa, accidents and personal injury. Visit  www.ottawainjury.ca for more information. If you have a subject  you would like to know about or  if you have a question,  please call or email me: david@ottawainjury.ca (613) 978-9549

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Ontario Bicycle Accident Lawyer David Hollingsworth, Ottawa Cycling Safety


City of Ottawa Skating Safety : Rideau Canal conditions, Ottawa lawyer David Hollingsworth

Ottawa Personal Injury Lawyer David Hollingsworth…I am very happy  that Ottawa children under the age of 10 will be required to wear protective helmets during public skating sessions held in City of Ottawa  facilities  effective January 1, 2012. It is estimated that 5,700 Ottawa children receive medical treatments for personal injury in Ottawa emergency rooms, and 400 children are hospitalized, every year because of sports-related head injuries.  This is very disturbing.  We all want kids to have fun but it cannot be at the expense of their safety.  Please take all necessary safety measures when it comes to children’s safety. There are far too many serious injuries each year such as traumatic brain injuries, spinal cord injuries and serious orthopedic injuries.

The City of Ottawa offers the following Safe Skating Tips:

  • Wear the gear! Wearing a CSA (Canadian Standards Association), Snell or ASTM (American Society for Testing and Materials) approved helmet, that fits properly, will help prevent head injury. It should be worn snug,  yet comfortable. Hockey helmets are recommended over cycling helmets because they can withstand multiple impacts. Wrist guards, elbow pads and knee pads help prevent wrist fractures, and bruises on knees and elbows.
  • Choose proper fitting skates that give good support around your ankles (moulded skates are not recommended). Local sport stores should be able to help you with a proper fit. Remember, new skates must be sharpened before you go on the ice and then sharpened again each year at the start of the skating season.
  • Lace your skates all the way up. You should never wrap the laces around your ankle. If the laces are too long, tie them in a double knot so you don’t trip over them.
  • Wear only one pair of socks. Multiple pairs will make you feel colder and your skates might be too tight.
  • Wear proper clothing: gloves, neck warmer, helmet, waterproof jacket and pants (NO jeans, as they will not keep you warm and dry if they get wet), long underwear, and a sweater should do the trick.
  • Get trained! Instructors will be able to teach you the basics of skating, such as how to stop, how to fall safely, and how to get up after a fall. For lessons call 613-580-2596.
  • Choose a surface that is relatively free of bumps and cracks to allow for more control and an easier time stopping. If skating on the Rideau Canal, watch for the green flags to ensure the conditions are safe. The N.C.C.’s Rideau Canal Skateway conditions hotline is: (613) 239-5234, press 1,1
  • Watch where you are going, and always skate with the traffic. If you want to stop, head to the side so you won’t get in anyone’s way.

Avoid the following:

  • Skating on the Rideau Canal Skateway when the red flags are flying.
  • Skating too fast – this puts you and those around you at risk.
  • Playing sports unless in a designated area (ex: hockey).
  • Holding on to more than one person – this increases your chance of falling and hurting someone else.
  • Placing sharp items in your pockets (ie. keys, combs, etc.).
  • Using your toe-pick to start or stop (this will ruin the ice surface, and it won’t give the stability you need to safely start or stop), or removing bottom pick (designed to help you balance).
  • Clothing with drawstrings.

Enjoy this winter and please be safe.                                          -Ottawa Personal Injury Lawyer David Hollingsworth

 

 


Ontario Accident Benefits: Definition Minor Injury Guidelines, Ottawa lawyer David Hollingsworth

Ontario Minor Injury Guidelines. Insurance Claims. Ottawa Personal Injury Lawyer David Hollingsworth…Have you recently been involved in an Ontario car accident and your insurance company has told you that your injury is classified as a “minor injury”? Unfortunately that means you will only receive $3500 in medical rehabilitation benefits available, regardless of whether or not you opted to pay for enhanced Ontario accident benefits.  Insurance companies have also determined that a minor injury does not qualify for housekeeping benefits or attendant care benefits. This causes a lot of problems for many Ontario accident victims, who require these benefits. Not everyone is seriously injured in an accident , so the minor injury guidelines are acceptable to them.  What’s really becoming a crisis situation in the vast majority of people who suffer serious injury in an accident and accept what their insurance company gives them in limited accident benefits, leaving them without enough support and benefits , which generally results in them not recovering. The Minor Injury Guidelines typically includes the following personal injuries resulting from an Ontario motor vehicle accident:

  • Sprains
  • Tears/ partial tears
  • Strains
  • Whiplash (unless there are neurological symptoms)
  • Cuts, contusions, and abrasions
  • Subluxations  (unless it is a complete dislocation of a joint)
As an experienced Ottawa personal injury lawyer, I urge anyone whose personal injuries have been classified as a minor injury and who feel that their injuries should not be in the minor injury guidelines to consult with an experienced Ottawa personal injury lawyer.  They can help you by filing an application for mediation with the Financial Services Commission of Ontario  (FSCO) and ensure you meet the limitation period for making  an application . Experienced Ottawa personal injury lawyers have helped countless numbers of Ontario accident victims not only get diagnosed properly, but get maximum compensation and rehabilitation.  These injuries may affect the rest of your life and you need to ensure that you receive what you need to live your life as best as possible. Don’t sell yourself or your family short ! Consult with  an experienced Ottawa personal injury lawyer.

———————- The  Ottawa Injury Blog is written regularly by Ottawa personal injury lawyer David Hollingsworth. Since 1999, David has been an Ottawa personal injury lawyer representing Ontario accident victims and the families of accident victims who have lost a loved one in an Ontario accident. This blog reports on accidents in eastern Ontario, personal injury issues, local Ottawa news and events and various news that relates to Ottawa, accidents and personal injury.  Visit www.ottawainjury.ca for more information. If you have a question, feel free to call or email david@ottawainjury.ca  (613) 978-9549 

Ontario Accident Benefits, Definition Minor Injury Guidelines, Ontario Injury Lawyer David Hollingsworth

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What's in your winter emergency car kit? , Ottawa lawyer David Hollingsworths shares…

Ottawa Injury Lawyer David Hollingsworth…A car break down or accident is never good, but it is worse during the winter months. A few inexpensive items kept in your car during winter months can help increase your safety and the safety of your loved ones. It is always wise to have an emergency kit in your car in case you ever need it. I came across some information on a website dedicated to cars and car safety, written by Aaron Gold. I thought I would share it with you as a reminder to us all as we head into the colder winter months here in Ottawa. 

In the event of an emergency…

1. Get assistance !

Roadside assistance: Most new cars include a roadside assistance program which will provide towing if your car breaks down. The Canadian Automobile Association (CAA) is  probably the best-known and most reliable third-party roadside assistance program in Canada.

Mobile phone and car charger: If you don’t have a mobile phone, and if you can, buy an inexpensive pre-paid unit to keep in your car so you can call for assistance. Make sure you have a car charger; some phones can also be charged from your car’s USB port.

OnStar: On many new cars, the OnStar system can get a live operator on the phone with the press of a button, and will automatically summon help if your car’s airbags deploy. Don’t forget, OnStar relies on the vehicle electrical system, so carry a cell phone as a backup.

2. Stay safe !

Emergency flares and/or hazard triangles: Winter accidents often result in damage to your car’s taillights, which means your hazard flashers will not work. In a snowstorm, other cars may not see your car until it’s too late to avoid it. Set out flares or hazard triangles to warn cars and avoid a second collision. If your car goes off the road in deeper snow, these items can also help emergency services find you and your vehicle.

First aid kit – Bad weather may delay emergency workers, so it’s a good idea to carry a basic first aid kit.

Small LED flashlight: Don’t rely on the vehicle’s electrical system for light — if it’s working, LEAVE IT-you want to conserve the car’s battery as long as possible. LED flashlights use much less energy than regular incandescent flashlights, making them a great choice for your emergency kit. The Mini Maglite LED is more expensive than many small flashlights, but its construction makes it well worth the price.

3. Stay warm

Emergency blanket: Cars use the engine to produce heat, so if the engine breaks, so does the heater. Even if the engine is working – say, after a car accident – running it can be dangerous, because if the exhaust system has rust holes or damage, fatal exhaust fumes can creep back into the passenger compartment. Besides, your car may not be the safest place to be in an emergency. Emergency blankets are small, light and cheap. Buy extras if you frequently travel with passengers.

Ski hats: Experts say that 30 to 40 % of body heat can be lost through the head. Carry a few inexpensive winter hats, large enough to cover the ears.

4. Keep busy !

Children’s books or games: If you travel with children, keep a few emergency children’s activities stowed away to fight boredom and keep the kids occupied while you wait for rescue.  

Non-perishable snacks: Munchies help pass the time and will keep your energy and morale up while you wait for rescue.

Where to carry your emergency kit?

The most logical place to store your emergency kit would be the trunk. The problem is if you’re in an accident that damages the rear end of the car, you may not be able to get the trunk open. Instead, carry your emergency kit in a small duffel bag stored in the passenger’s footwell, where it can be easily accessed by the driver . If your kit includes flares and you travel with children, store the flares in the trunk and keep a backup hazard triangle in the bag.

Most importantly , stay safe !!!

———————- The  Ottawa Injury Blog is written regularly by Ontario personal injury lawyer David Hollingsworth. Since 1999, David has been an Ottawa injury lawyer representing Ottawa accident victims and the families of accident victims who have lost a loved one in an Ontario accident. This blog reports on accidents in eastern Ontario, personal injury issues, local Ottawa news and events and various news that relates to Ottawa, accidents and personal injury.  Visit www.ottawainjury.ca for more information. If you have a question, feel free to call or email david@ottawainjury.ca  (613) 978-9549

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Ottawa Personal Injury Lawyer on Hallowe'en Safety Tips…

Happy Hallowe’en everyone.   Before you head out tomorrow night , please take a minute  to review these Hallowe’en safety tips from the Red Cross… My children are quite excited for the big day , as are most.  We have finally decided on a lamb, a witch and a glowstick guy ! Looking forward to seeing all the kids. Enjoy your night everyone and please be safe !!!                                                           -Ottawa Personal Injury Lawyer David Hollingsworth

With witches, goblins, and super-heroes descending on neighborhoods across Canada, the Canadian Red Cross offers parents some safety tips to help prepare their children for a safe and enjoyable trick-or-treat holiday. Halloween should be filled with surprise and enjoyment, and following some common practices to keep events safer and more fun!

  • Costumes should be light-colored and flame resistant with reflective strips so that children are more easily seen at night.  (And remember to put reflective tape on bikes, skateboards, and brooms, too!)
  • Costumes should be short enough to avoid tripping.
  • Remind children to keep away from open fires and candles. (Costumes can be extremely flammable.)
  • Use face paint rather than masks or things that will cover the eyes.
  • Remind children to walk, slither, and sneak on sidewalks – not in the street.
  • Explain to children that calls should be made along one side of the street first and then the other, and that it’s best to cross the street only at intersections or crosswalks.
  • Remind children to look both ways before crossing the street to check for cars, trucks, and low-flying brooms.
  • Provide yourself or the children with a flashlight to see better and to be better seen.
  • Have children plan their route and share it with you and the family. 
  • Trick or Treaters should travel in groups of four or five.  Young children should be accompanied by an adult.
  • Visit homes that have the porch light on.
  • Make sure children know they should accept treats at the door and must not get into cars or enter the homes or apartments of strangers.
  • Remind children not to eat their treats and goodies until they are examined by an adult at home.  And candy should not be eaten if the package is already opened. Small, hard pieces of candy are a choking hazard for young children.
  • Make sure you and your children know where the Block Parent houses are located in the neighborhood.
  • Set agreed-to boundaries with your children.  Explain the importance of staying within them and arriving home on time.
  • Injury is no accident. Prepare! Stay Safe! Survive!  

    ———————- The  Ottawa Injury Blog is written regularly by Ottawa personal injury lawyer David Hollingsworth. Since 1999, David has been an Ottawa injury lawyer representing Ontario accident victims and the families of accident victims who have lost a loved one in an Ontario accident. This blog reports on accidents in eastern Ontario, personal injury issues, local Ottawa news and events and various news that relates to Ottawa, accidents and personal injury.  Visit www.ottawainjury.ca for a free consultation and  more information. If you have a question, feel free to call or email david@ottawainjury.ca  (613) 978-9549

    Ontario Personal Injury Lawyer , Ottawa  Accident Lawyers , Personal Injury Lawyer Ottawa  David Hollingsworth

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