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Anchorage Personal Injury Law Blog

Cross-over car accident in Alaska kills 1 and injures another

A substantial number of car accidents on U.S. roads are caused by drivers who cross over the median or center line. Such accidents often lead to head-on collisions, and catastrophic injuries or even death is not uncommon. Alaska is no different, and a tragic cross-over car accident recently claimed the life of a driver and severely injured another.

The dispatch reports of the troopers who responded stated that the crash occurred on Glenn Highway in the early afternoon of a recent Saturday. They found that a 79-year-old man from another state was northbound in a pickup truck, towing an SUV. For reasons not yet determined, the driver apparently veered across the center, landing in the southbound traffic lane.

Wrongful death lawsuit could follow fatal accident

When an Alaska family loses a loved one due to the negligent actions of another, the family has the right to seek legal recourse in the matter. Many families choose to pursue a wrongful death lawsuit after the death of a loved one for a variety of reasons. Some are hoping to recover financial losses, such as medical costs, loss of property and the loss of that family member's income. Others are simply looking for justice in the matter and a public recognition of the events that led to the loss of life.

An example may lie in the recent death of a 66-year-old man who was struck and killed while riding a scooter. The man was travelling in the outbound lane of the Glenn Highway near the Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson when the collision took place. Police report that a red SUV was moving in the same lane and same direction of travel when the two vehicles collided.

Teen pleads guilty after cyclist's death in Alaska car accident

Some teenagers in Alaska may not be aware of the responsibilities that come along with driving a vehicle. Just prior to her 18th birthday, a girl recently pleaded guilty to criminally negligent homicide and DUI in Anchorage Superior Court. These charges followed a 2014 car accident that claimed the life of a cyclist.

According to court documents, the girl backed up while trying to turn her vehicle around and struck the cyclist who was behind her. She apparently failed to stop and check on the condition of the victim, and police located her at her nearby residence. Her blood alcohol level was tested and apparently determined to exceed the legal limit. The young driver was charged as an adult, and although her legal representative asked for the case to be moved to juvenile court, the prosecutor objected. Apparently, a final resolution of that issue has not been reached.

An Alaska aviation accident can point to larger problems

When people hear about an aviation accident in Alaska, they often focus on the crash itself, as well as whether the pilot made an error. However, the real problem may lie at a deeper level. In fact, one recent report points fingers at airline management and a lack of oversight as the real causes of an aviation accident. 

Investigators who studied a Cessna crash that occurred in 2013 looked at the big picture, and the evidence they found uncovered a wealth of problems with the airline. Some of the alleged issues inherent within the corporate culture of the airline that operated the Cessna included the hiring of pilots without the proper attitudes toward safety, as well as untrained personnel who made decisions regarding appropriate weather conditions. Most troubling of all is a suggestion by the FAA that this might be a more widespread concern for passengers flying in Alaska.

Hope for those severely injured in a pedestrian accident

One of the most serious types of injury that an individual can be subjected to involves trauma to the spinal cord. Spinal cord injuries can lead to the loss of function of entire portions of the human body, and many individuals experience a simultaneous loss of autonomy. For those in Alaska who have suffered a spinal cord injury during a pedestrian accident, a new rehabilitation tool may offer hope in regaining sensation.

A group known as the Walk Again Project has created a prototype of an exoskeleton that has received positive results with a small group of volunteers. The exoskeleton looks a little like a superhero suit, with a large number of wires and electronic leads visible on the exterior. An electrode cap is connected to the wearer's scalp, which allows for the transfer of brain activity to receptors within the suit.

Anchorage motor vehicle accident leads to fatalities and injuries

A serious motor vehicle accident occurred in Anchorage in early April, involving three vehicles and four victims. Two of them died at the scene of the incident, and two required medical attention. The details of the motor vehicle accident that have been released thus far demonstrate how one moment can radically change lives.

The incident took place on Glenn Highway, one of the most regularly traveled routes for the residents of Anchorage's suburbs. Late on a Friday afternoon, a 38-year-old male driver operating an SUV lost control and struck another vehicle traveling in the other outbound lane. The collision propelled the SUV across the median and into the path of inbound traffic.

Alaska man leaves victim lying in the road at car accident scene

Leaving the scene of a car accident involving a pedestrian is a crime in Alaska, regardless of the reasons behind the motivation to flee. Some people leave the scene of a car accident because they are impaired, while others flee out of panic, but even that is not an excuse to drive away. After all, a simple call to emergency responders might be the difference between life and death for the individual who was hurt.

In a recent hit-and-run accident involving a skateboarder in Anchorage, the driver chose to flee rather than stay and attempt to provide his victim with help. The vehicle and its driver were eventually located thanks to witnesses who managed to record the license plate number of the vehicle that hit the 23-year-old woman. At last report, he was being held on a $30,000 bond.

Car accident victims can lose insurance coverage

For those in Alaska who have suffered spinal cord injuries, their lives and those of their loved ones may be forever altered. In some cases, health insurance will assist in covering the costs of necessary medical care associated with an injury. In some cases, however, insurance coverage is discontinued after a spinal cord injury has taken place, leaving a patient and family left to foot the bill for any additional medical services. The result can be financial devastation, which may lead many to file for bankruptcy in the years following a car accident or other form of trauma.

Stanford University recently conducted research to determine the rates of insurance loss for patients who had suffered spinal cord injuries. Data was collected for the time frame between 2006 and 2010. The group studied consisted of individuals who had private insurance coverage. When the researchers looked at the rates at which individuals experienced discontinuations of insurance coverage, it was noted that those patients who had sustained spinal cord injuries lost their coverage at higher rates than those who had experienced other forms of significant injury. Furthermore, the patients with spinal cord injuries lost their insurance at far higher rates than individuals who had not had any forms of injury.

Car accident between SUV and moving truck causes head injury

Icy road conditions in Alaska require motorists to take extra care when they are driving. A car accident can happen instantly in such conditions and may lead to severe injuries, or worse. Unfortunately, many drivers fail to adjust their driving techniques when they face adverse weather conditions.

A 47-year old driver suffered severe head injuries in a recent accident on Sterling Highway. Troopers reported that a 50-year-old employee of a moving company was northbound on the highway on a recent Monday. He apparently lost control of  large truck as he encountered a corner on the roadway. The lack of control caused the truck to go across the yellow lines in the center and smashed head-on into an approaching SUV.

Numerous car accident injuries are caused by distracted driving

Technological advances are supposed to make the lives of Alaska's residents better. However, an ever-increasing number of car accident injuries are caused by drivers who are distracted because they are texting. One study indicated that texting and driving is just as dangerous as drunk driving. This is due to the fact that it is not only a driver's eyes that are taken off the road, but that he or she needs to concentrate on the conversation and what is being typed.

When a driver diverts his or her attention for as little as two seconds, his or her risk of being involved in an accident increases 24 times. If a driver happens to be inexperienced, which is the case with many teenagers, the risk is even higher. A recent study involving interactive presentations given to approximately 3,000 teenagers from Alaska and three other states has shown that similar presentations can make teenagers more aware of these dangers.