Ottawa lawyer David Hollingsworth offering safety driving tips for icy roads.

Ottawa Accident Lawyer

.I was up bright and early this morning taking our kids to hockey.  I knew it had rained last night but I had no idea when I hit Ottawa streets how slippery they were.  As I pulled into the arena parking lot, my vehicle slid sideways down a hill.  Thankfully it was 6:30 am (yawn) and the lot was empty. I was driving very slowly and paying close attention to the road conditions, yet at that very moment, there was nothing else I could have done.  I was sliding on ice . Be careful out there on Ottawa roads. It is extremely slippery out there today. The Ottawa Police Service have provided excellent safety tips to drivers who encounter freezing rain.

-Clear all ice and snow off your vehicle to avoid any ice and snow dislodging and flying onto other vehicles.

-Allow yourself distance between vehicles. Especially when the roads are icy, you need enough distance to stop. Also it allows time to react if ice and snow is flying off other vehicles.
-Be aware that other vehicles may loose snow and ice on them. Often times, transport trucks have ice and snow on the roof of their trailers.
-Always slow down when the roads are icy.
-Allow yourself more time to arrive safely to your destination.
-Ensure your vehicle is ready for winter. Ensure you have winter tires, proper windshield wipers.

Here are a few more tips I have to offer:

  1. Make sure tries have good grips: Always best to have proper winter tires installed.
  2. Make sure you can see. Make sure blades, windows and headlights are properly functioning and clean.
  3. Run the air-conditioner. This removes condensation and frost from the interior of windows.
  4. Check your lights. Ensure they are clear of snow and working.
  5. Know how to use your brakes. If you find yourself sliding on ice,use your antilock brakes: Stomp, stay and steer. Stomp on the pedal . Stay with the pedal. Steer around the obstacle.
  6. If your car is not equipped with ABS, do not panic. Push the brake pedal hard until the wheels stop rolling, then immediately release the brake enough to allow the wheels to begin turning again. Repeat this sequence rapidly.
  7. Be careful. Look for “black ice. Touch your brakes regularly enough to test for black ice.
  8. Know the tough spots.  Bridges and intersections are common places for ice to form.
  9. Too much steering is bad. In most cases, over steering will always make the situation worse. While it may be instinctive to steer away from the obstacle as hard as you can you may make things worse. If the icy conditions end and the front tires regain grip, your vehicle will go in whatever way the wheels are facing, which could be very dangerous (oncoming traffic , hydro poles or traffic).

All in all, common sense and good driving habits are what will help you the most. Sometimes, despite this accidents will happen as we cannot control everything around us. Please drive safely out there.

 


Thank you Ottawa Police, Ottawa Pathway Program, Right bike and Citizens for Safe Cycling for trying to reduce Ottawa cycling accidents.

Bicycle Accident Lawyer Ottawa

I want to personally thank the Ottawa Police, the Ottawa Pathway Program, Right Bike and the Citizens for Safe Cycling. Yesterday they were involved in a fantastic Ottawa safety initiative. 200 bicycle lights were handed out yesterday to cyclists who did not have proper lighting on their bicycles. This is part of a bicycle safety awareness campaign that had Ottawa Police Traffic enforcement officers  stopping cyclists who do not have the proper lights on their bicycles.  Many volunteers from Citizens for Safe Cycling, Right Bike and the City of Ottawa Pathway Patrol Program provided the  free lights and bells and also went as far as showing cyclists how to install them properly.

Cyclists need to be visible when cycling. Cyclists share the road with other cyclists, drivers and pedestrians. Now that it is getting darker, these safety measures become much more important.

Common causes of Ottawa Cycling Accidents

Did you know that the Highway Traffic Act (HTA) states that all cyclists must have  a working front light and minimum  rear reflector,  as well as a working bell?   The lack of proper lights and bells are the two most common offences Ottawa Police have come across when they have ran enforcement blitzes with a focus on cyclists.  Seems to me, there is an easy fix here.

Do what it takes to avoid an Ottawa bicycle accident

Please, ensure that when you are cycling you have taken all precautions for a safe ride.  We have lost far too many cyclists here in Ottawa to preventable accidents.  On the flip side, to everyone sharing the roads, cyclists, drivers and pedestrians, please be aware that you are sharing the roads and remain in control. Any accident can happen in a split second and can be life-altering.  Ride, drive and walk safely.

 


Ottawa Police planning to streamline accident reporting process, cut costs and lower Ottawa accident reporting times.

Ottawa Accident Report

Ottawa Police are planning to make improvements to their accident reporting system.  The accident reporting process should then be faster, safer, and more efficient  due to the new technology being used as well as designated Collision Reporting Centres (CRC) in Ottawa.

Motorists who are involved in accidents and who have not suffered injuries and have a vehicle that can still be driven will be able to attend one of the three designated reporting centres (open 7 days a week ) . The accident report will need to be filed within 24 hours. Ottawa’s 3 reporting  centres will be located at 474 Elgin Street, 211 Huntmar Drive and 3343 St. Joseph Boulevard.

On average, it takes 32 minutes before an available officer arrives on an Ottawa accident scene and the accident reporting process takes approximately  72-minutes. Now, with the new system in place, the process will be quicker it will also alleviate traffic around the accident.  Now under the new system, Ottawa accidents will be submitted electronically which will not only save time, it will save money , dropping the cost of each report $249 to $167.

If you plan on starting a personal injury lawsuit, you will need a police report.  Our lawyers can order a copy for you if you do not have a copy. Contact an Ottawa personal injury lawyer for a free consultation and let us help you get all the supports and compensation you are entitled to.


Ottawa Police : Canada Road Safety Week , Ottawa Personal Injury Lawyer David Hollingsworth

Ottawa injury lawyer David Hollingsworth supports Ottawa Police Initiativeottawapolice

As an Ontario Personal Injury Lawyer, I applaud and support the efforts made by the Ottawa Police to make our Ottawa streets a safer place….The Police Service will participate in Canada Road Safety Week which runs from May 16  to May 23. In 2010, there were 30 fatal car accidents that resulted  in the deaths of 34 people in the Ottawa community.  Consequently, the Ottawa Police have made traffic safety a high priority through various initiatives.  One program the Ottawa Police have put in place is the  RIDE (Reduce Impaired Driving Everywhere) Programs during the evenings of Thursday May 19th and Friday May 20th.  The RIDE Program in Ontario  is led by the police community which runs all year long and involves random police spot checks where vehicles are stopped and drivers are checked for impaired driving.

Police are also actively engaged in Project E.R.A.S.E. (Eliminate Racing Activity on Streets Everywhere) a collaborative effort of 22 police services, the Ontario Ministry of Transportation and the Ontario Ministry of the Environment whose goal is to change poor driver behavior through education and strategic enforcement.  Sadly, since 1999 48 people have been killed in Ontario as a result of street racing activities . In addition, excessive speed continues to be the leading contributing factor in fatal car accidents.

Ottawa Police focus on Canada’s Road Safety Week

During Canada’s Road Safety Week, Ottawa police will focus on 4 issues:

  • Drinking and driving.
  •  Seat belts and child restraints.
  • Aggressive driving, driving at unsafe speeds, following too closely or running red lights and stop signs.
  • Distracted Driving

As an Ottawa personal injury lawyer and along with the Ottawa Police, encourage everyone on our roadways to work towards making our Ottawa roads and Ontario roads the safest in the world. Let’s do it Ottawa !

 


Tailgating- major cause of Ottawa car accidents, Ottawa lawyer reports..

Ottawa Car Accident Lawyer David Hollingsworth reports..

The Ottawa Police have a new year’s resolution to target tailgating and those who fail to obey stop signs. For the month of January, the city of Ottawa and Ottawa police, will focus on drivers who follow the vehicle ahead too closely and those who don’t stop properly at stop signs. Tailgating caused 4,716 rear-end collisions in 2007 — the most frequent type of crash accounting for one-third of Ottawa’s car accidents. These collisions resulted in 4 Ottawa wrongful deaths and 1,470 Ottawa personal injuries — 17 of them life-threatening. Meanwhile, drivers who failed to stop at stop signs caused close to 1,700 Ottawa car accidents in 2007, resulting in 8 wrongful deaths and 588 personal injuries — 27 of them life-threatening.  The recommended amount of distance between 2 vehicles is 2 chevrons , which I believe is equal to two car lengths. The more distance the better.

Parents need to lead by example

I think its also particularly important for parents to lead by example when driving with young drivers or soon to be drivers.  Our children watch what we do and they copy what we do and this is especially true when it comes to driving.  If you tailgate and your child learns from you that tailgaiting “isn’t that bad”, they may be likely to tailgate as well.  This is extremely dangerous given that our young drivers are inexperienced . They are not used to having to brake quickly etc.. This is just one more reason why new and old drivers alike cannot tailgate.

The rules of the road are seem pretty simple to me. Keep your distance- it’s a very easy way to save lives and avoid personal injury. If all drivers follow some very simple rules, our Ottawa roads would be a much safer place and hopefully we could help reduce the number of Ottawa accidents.

-David Hollingsworth, Personal Injury Lawyer in Ottawa working for Ottawa Law Firm Goldberg Stroud LLP


Accident and injury prevention Halloween night.

Ottawa personal injury and accident lawyer David Hollingsworth: Be careful out there this Saturday night. We need to keep our children safe and free from injury. The Ottawa police have put out these safety tips and I thought I’d share them with you.

The night is quickly approaching when the streets will be filled with ghosts and goblins, not to mention princesses and fairies. As always, there are a few important Halloween safety guidelines that should be observed to ensure the night runs smoothly.

Around the house… Many people enjoy transforming their homes into eerie scenes. Be sure to keep the path leading up to your door free of obstacles for the little ones, especially those with masks who might have trouble seeing in dim light.

Keep pets indoors on Halloween to protect them from hazards and preventing them from being aggressive to visitors. Before you light those candles in your pumpkin, consider using inexpensive safety glow sticks. Nothing says spooky like a glowing green jack-o-lantern!

Costumes: It is important that when helping a child pick out a costume, safety should be the main concern. Wear a light-coloured or bright costume, reflective tape or arm bands to heighten visibility.
Wear a costume that is properly fitted to reduce the chance of tripping on it.
Select a costume that is constructed from flame-retardant materials. Make sure your vision is not restricted. Consider completing your costume with make-up rather than masks. Masks may require that the eye-holes be cut larger for the sake of good peripheral vision. Shoes should fit properly even if they do not go well with a costume. If a child’s costume requires the use of props, such as a flexible-plastic sword, make sure the sharp tip is cut or filed round. Glow sticks are also an excellent method to increase a child’s visibility. You might want to consider creating a fun necklace with string to ensure they will want to wear as part of their costumes. Accessorize with a flashlight!
Before the kids hit the streets, it is important that parents be aware of the route that their children plan to follow. If you are unable to take them out yourself, consider asking another parent, an older sibling or babysitter to do the honours for you. Ensuring your child is wearing a watch also allows you to establish an agreed upon curfew.

Teach your children to recognize the places along his/her route where they can obtain help: Police Station, Fire Station or any other well indicated public place.

Although tampering of loot is rare, remind children that they must have their candy inspected by their parents or guardian prior to eating them.

Some Rules for Trick or Treaters

Bring a flashlight;
Walk instead of running;
Stay on the sidewalks (If there is no sidewalk, walk on the left-hand side of the street facing traffic);
Avoid jaywalking;
Do not cut across lawns or take short-cuts;
Take masks off when walking from one house to the next;
Do not go inside houses and do not get into vehicles;
Only visit houses that are lit;
Stay away from animals you are not familiar with; and
Vandalism is not just a ‘trick’ – it is against the law and has consequences.

Avoid injury and be safe out there Ottawa !! Above all, have a safe and ghoulishly good Halloween!
-David Hollingsworth, Ottawa Personal Injury Accident Lawyer