February 17, 2015

First Responder Killed in SC

On Sunday evening, a firefighter was struck and killed by a hit-and-run driver in Anderson County, South Carolina. The Sandy Springs firefighter was responding to a crash scene at the time of the wreck. According to WLOS ABC News Channel 13, the incident happened at about 9:00 p.m. The Sandy Springs firefighter was working a crash scene on US 76 when a suspected drunk driver struck and killed him. The South Carolina Highway Patrol reports that 64-year-old Charles Pickens was headed west on US 76 and went around emergency equipment when he struck the first responder.

Hit-and-Run Driver in South Carolina

The driver initially left the scene of the crime, but he was later picked up at his home. WLOS ABC News Channel 13 also reports that he has been charged with felony driving under the influence (DUI) involving death and leaving the scene of the crash. The entire Sandy Springs community is mourning the loss of the local first responder.

Driving Under the Influence Accidents

When drivers are under the influence of drugs or alcohol, they're putting everybody on the road at great risk for injury or death. Even certain prescription and over-the-counter medications can impair a driver's ability to safely navigate the roadways. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration's Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over campaign is aimed at raising awareness about not only the physical dangers of drunk driving, but also the economic damages and direct legal consequences involved with a DUI.

Move Over, It's The Law

North Carolina and South Carolina, as well as many other states, have "Move Over" laws, which require drivers to move over or slow down for emergency responders and road workers on the side of the road. These laws are designed to keep public service officials, first responders and other roadway employees and workers safe. In North Carolina, drivers are required to move over one lane for flashing lights. If you're unable to move over, you have to reduce your speed. This law also extends to the flashing amber lights of road service vehicles too.

The team at Davis Law Group, P.A. sends their deepest heartfelt condolences to the family members, friends and coworkers of the deceased firefighter.

February 12, 2015

Fatal Crash in Spartanburg

A multi-car crash on Intestate 85 took the lives of four people on Wednesday. According to WLOS ABC News Channel 13, the incident happened at about 11:00 p.m. near mile marker 67, close to Wellford. Apparently, somebody was driving the wrong way down a northbound lane.

At least six vehicles were involved in the crash that took four lives. The wrong-way driver was one of the people killed in the crash. Very few details have been released, but we do know that several other people were transported to the hospital for treatment of injures.

At this time, there's no word on the extent of injuries involved, how many people were injured or their current conditions. The team at Davis Law Group, P.A. sends their deepest condolences to the family members and friends of the deceased victims and wishes speedy and full recoveries for those who were injured.

February 12, 2015

Herbal Supplements Mislabeled & Potentially Deadly

herbal plus bottle.jpg
The New York Attorney General, Eric T. Schneiderman, recently announced that his office sent cease and desist letters to four major retailers, GNC, Target, Walmart, and Walgreens, for allegedly selling store brand herbal supplements that either did not contain the labeled substance, or contained ingredients that were not listed on the labels. The cease and desist letters demanded that the giant retailers to immediately stop selling the popular herbal products, including Echinacea, Ginseng, St. John's Wort, and others.

The New York AG's office also demanded that the retailers provide detailed information about the production, processing and testing of the herbal supplements, as well as explain in detail their production quality control measures.

The factual basis for the AG's action is DNA testing of the herbal supplements. The DNA test results show that only 21% of the store brand herbal supplements contained DNA from the plants listed on the products' labels, whereas 79% of the products failed to contain any DNA related to the labeled content. Walmart was by far the worst offender of all of the major retailers with only 4% of the Walmart products actually containing DNA that matched the product label.

Attorney General Schneiderman said, "this investigation makes one thing abundantly clear: the old adage 'buyer beware' may be especially true for consumers of herbal supplements." He went on to say that "the DNA test results seem to confirm long-standing questions about the herbal supplement industry. Mislabeling, contamination, and false advertising are illegal. They also pose unacceptable risks to New York families--especially those with allergies to hidden ingredients. At the end of the day, American corporations must step up to the plate and ensure that their customers are getting what they pay for, especially when it involves promises of good health."

If this is happening in New York, then it is most likely also happening everywhere else these products are sold nationwide. This creates some very serious liability for the giant retailers. It also creates some very serious potential dangers for North Carolina consumers. Those with life-threatening allergies rely on retailers to make sure that the products they sell are safe and contain what is listed on the product label. Mislabeling is one of the primary causes of serious injury and/or death to those with life-threatening allergies. If one of these products contained traces of nuts or nut oils, then the product would be a source of danger and potential injury to any person with a nut allergy.

Davis Law Group is currently interviewing individuals in North Carolina who have bought and consumed these mislabeled products, as we believe that further testing is justified to see if local retailers are also selling mislabeled products. If we are able to confirm that fake herbal supplements are being sold in North Carolina, then Attorney General Roy Cooper's Office needs to get involved and take action like that in New York.

Class action lawsuits are also another way to stop bad corporate behavior. Although class action lawsuits have been curtailed by recent Supreme Court rulings, they are still viable in certain types of cases. If you have bought and/or consumed any of the herbal supplements from these giant retailers, feel free to contact the team at Davis Law Group for further information.

February 10, 2015

One Text or Call Could Wreck it All

Texting while driving and other forms of distracted driving have become a dangerous epidemic in North Carolina and across the nation. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration's (NHTSA's) "One Text or Call Could Wreck it All" campaign is all about raising awareness about the dangers of distracted driving, specifically texting behind the wheel. It only takes an instant of inattention to make a devastating, catastrophic or fatal error behind the wheel. Even just reading a text message can put your life and the lives of others on the line.

Distracted Driving Accidents in Asheville

When drivers are focusing on their cell phones, GPS software or other electronic devices, they're not paying attention to the road. Even a cell phone conversation can be a dangerous distraction behind the wheel. Anytime a driver's manual, visual or cognitive attention is taken away from the task of driving, they're distracted driving. It's not uncommon to see drivers drift out of their lanes or cross centerlines when they're distracted. One text or call could wreck it all.

Distracted Driving Facts Across the U.S.

• In 2011, 3,360 people were killed in distracted driving crashes.
• In 2012, 3,328 people were killed in crashes involving distracted drivers.
• An estimated 387,000 people were injured in distracted driving wrecks in 2011.
• An estimated 421,000 people were injured in distracted driving crashes in 2012.
• Drivers in their 20's make up over a quarter of all distracted drivers in fatal crashes.
• About 153.3 billion text messages are sent across the U.S. every month.

After a Distracted Driving Accident

Cases of distracted driving aren't always immediately apparent to law enforcement officers on the scene, so it's a good idea to contact a lawyer if you suspect distracted driving could have been the cause of an accident you were injured in. Whether it was a case of texting behind the wheel or talking on the phone, a distracted driving wreck can leave victims in the hospital, or worse.

If you have been injured or if you have lost a loved one in a distracted driving accident, contact the skilled personal injury team at Davis Law Group, P.A. at 866-397-2897 for a free case consultation today.

February 5, 2015

Over 200,000 Jeeps Recalled

Approximately 230,000 Jeep Grand Cherokees are being recalled this week due to defective airbags. According to WLOS ABC News Channel 13, under certain circumstances, the airbags can deploy inappropriately, without a crash happening.

This is reportedly a software problem that will be fixed, so the airbags will be less likely to deploy in the absence of a crash. Models being recalled are from 2014 and 2015. Jeep owners can take their automobiles to local dealerships for the software upgrade. An additional 2 million vehicles are also being recalled at this time for similar airbag problems.

You can check the recall status of your vehicle using the VIN Look-up Tool at Safercar.gov. If you have been injured in a crash involving a defective auto part, contact the skilled legal team at Davis Law Group, P.A. for a free consultation today.

February 3, 2015

Semi Truck Crash on US-70

On Monday afternoon, a semi truck crashed on US-70 near Swannanoa. According to WLOS ABC News Channel 13, the incident happened at about 3:40 p.m. near Avery Wood Drive, between Swannanoa and Black Mountain. Apparently, the truck driver tried to speed up in an attempt to avoid a falling tree. Unable to miss the tree, the large tractor trailer struck the downed tree.

Traffic Backed Up on US-70

The roadway was closed as crews worked the scene, and traffic was backed up in both directions. Thankfully, no other automobiles were involved in this big rig crash, but there's no word on whether or not the truck driver sustained any injuries in the crash or what his current condition is.

Tractor Trailer Crashes in Asheville

Crashes involving semi trucks can be incredibly devastating for drivers and passengers in smaller passenger occupant vehicles. Commercial trucks are much larger and heavier than light cars and trucks. They don't stop on a dime, and sometimes, they carry hazardous and flammable materials. Crashes involving large trucks are also complicated from a legal standpoint. Truck drivers and commercial trucking agencies have additional rules and regulations to follow for safe roadway operation.

Commercial Trucking Safety Regulations

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) is the agency tasked with regulating the trucking industry. Drivers have to comply with hours of service laws, certain medical requirements and strict drug and alcohol laws. Tractor trailer drivers owe a duty of safety to other roadway users. Their vehicles are simply too big for there to be any room for error. If you've been involved in a crash involving a semi truck, you're in for a lengthy investigative process that involves multiple investigating agencies. Due to the additional regulations, semi truck accident cases are much more complex than traditional car accident cases.

After a Semi Truck Crash

After any kind of truck crash, you need to take care of your health first. Once your injuries have been medically evaluated and treated, your next priority needs to be contacting a skilled personal injury lawyer with truck accident experience. Contact the team at Davis Law Group, P.A. today at 866-397-2897 for a free case consultation.

January 29, 2015

Multiple Crashes on I-26

On Wednesday morning, three separate crashes happened on I-26 in South Asheville. According to WLOS ABC News Channel 13, the initial wreck was a rollover crash involving a truck. The first crash happened just after 8:00 a.m., near Exit 33 to Brevard Road. The driver of the truck was ejected, when the vehicle rolled over. He was taken to the hospital for treatment of a severe head injury.

There were at least two other wrecks in the area following the initial crash. Very few details have been released about the crashes, which are likely still under investigation with local law enforcement authorities. Traffic was backed up for hours as crews worked the scenes. At this time, there's no word on the truck driver's condition.

The team at Davis Law Group, P.A. wishes the victims full and speedy recoveries from their injuries.

January 27, 2015

NHTSA's Winter Weather Driving Tips

With the weather conditions quickly deteriorating, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has some important driving tips for safely navigating wintery roadways. Although many drivers in Asheville consider themselves seasoned and savvy winter weather drivers, icy roads and distracted or inexperienced drivers can be a recipe for disaster.

When You Can, Stay Home

The NHTSA encourages drivers to stay home, if possible. Unfortunately, you can't protect yourself in every possible situation, even if you are a good winter weather driver. There are still going to be inexperienced or dangerous drivers taking to the roadways in bad weather, putting other motorists and themselves at great risk. If you can't stay off of the roadways in poor weather conditions, the NHTSA has a few tips to help you get where you're going safely.

NHTSA's Winter Weather Safe Driving Tips

• Before leaving, clear snow and ice from windows, windshields and lights.
• Always buckle up, and make sure children are in age and size appropriate child safety seats.
• Drive slowly.
• Don't text behind the wheel.
• Focus on the road.
• Know your brakes.

When You're in Trouble

You should know what kind of brakes you have. If you have antilock breaks, apply firm continuous pressure. If you don't have antilock brakes, pump them gently. If you're car is skidding, try to remain calm. The NHTSA recommends easing your foot off of the gas carefully, while steering in the direction you want the front of your automobile to go. Stay off of the pedals until you regain control of the vehicle.

If You're Stranded

• Stay with your car and don't overexert yourself.
• Put bright markers on the antenna and windows.
• Leave the interior dome light on.
• To avoid asphyxiation from carbon monoxide, don't run your car for long periods of time with the windows up.

Car Accidents in Asheville

If you or a loved one has been injured in an accident involving icy roads or winter weather, contact the skilled team at Davis Law Group, P.A. at 866-397-2897 for a free consultation today, and stay abreast of the latest weather conditions with WLOS ABC News Channel 13. If you have to travel, slow down and drive safely.

January 22, 2015

Teen Killed in One-Car Greenville Crash

On Wednesday morning, a Landrum High School student was killed in a one-car crash on Highway 11. The incident happened at about 7:30 a.m. on Highway 11. According to WLOS ABC News Channel 13, 17-year-old Jordan Powell was on his way to school when he over-corrected his Honda Civic and drove off of the side of the road.

Powell was not wearing a seat belt at the time of the crash, and he was ejected from the vehicle. He died on the scene. Classmates visited the site of the crash to reflect on the wreck and the loss of their friend.

The team at Davis Law Group, P.A. sends their deepest condolences to Jordan Powell's family members, friends, classmates and football teammates.

January 20, 2015

Fatal Crash on I-40

Early Sunday morning, a single-car crash on I-40 killed one person and injured another in Asheville. According to WLOS ABC News Channel 13, the incident happened in the eastbound lane near mile marker 48, near the Farmer's Market. For currently unknown reasons, the 2000 Chevy Camaro left the roadway and struck a patch of trees. The 29-year-old driver, Andrew Anderson of Weaverville, was killed in the crash. The passenger, 33-year-old Alan Morgan of Etowah, was injured in the crash.

Fatal Crash Under Investigation

At this time, there's no word on why the car left the roadway. Additionally, there's no word on Morgan's condition, but his injuries were initially described as non-life threatening. As of Monday morning, the crash was still under investigation with the Asheville Police Department's Traffic Safety Unit. At that time, no charges had been filed in the case.

DOT's 2013 Traffic Fatality Numbers

The U.S. Department of Transportation's National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has recently issued a press release regarding the number of roadway crash fatalities in 2013. There's good news. Fatality rates are at a historic low. They have declined nearly 25 percent over the past decade. Additionally, there was a 3.1 percent decrease in traffic crash fatalities in 2013 from 2012.

2013 Traffic Crash Facts

• In 2013, 32,719 people were killed in traffic crashes across the nation.
• The number of injuries in traffic crashes declined by 2.1 percent from 2012 to 2013.
• Pedestrian fatalities increased by 1.2 percent, the highest since 2006.
• An estimated 424,000 people were injured in distraction-related crashes in 2013.

After a Car Accident

After any kind of car accident, it's a good idea to speak with a skilled personal injury attorney. A lawyer can stay on top of official investigative details and be your family's advocate during a difficult time. Whether you've lost a loved one in a semi truck crash or a distracted driver has injured you, an experienced lawyer can be an indispensable asset.

The team at Davis Law Group, P.A. sends their deepest condolences to the family members and friends of Andrew Anderson and wishes Alan Morgan a full and speedy recovery from his injuries.

January 15, 2015

Fire Truck Crash in Hendersonville

On Wednesday morning, a fire truck crash in Hendersonville sent two firefighters to the hospital. According to WLOS ABC News Channel 13, the incident happened at around 8:00 a.m., when the fire truck was responding to a nearby crash. The fire truck left the roadway and went down an embankment.

Two of the injured firefighters had to be carried on stretchers back up to the roadway. One of the firefighters had to be admitted to Mission Hospital for treatment of a broken collarbone and internal injuries. He was listed in stable condition though. At this time, the crash is being blamed on icy roadway conditions.

The team at Davis Law Group, P.A. wishes the injured first responders full and speedy recoveries.

January 13, 2015

Fatal Greenville Crash

In the early morning hours, a person was killed in a one-car crash in Greenville, South Carolina. According to WLOS ABC News Channel 13, the incident happened on Latimer Ridge Road, near Honea Path at about 1:22 a.m. For currently unknown reasons, the 2001 GMC pickup truck left the roadway and struck a tree. The driver was killed, and his or her name has not yet been released.

Driver Not Wearing Seat Belt

Sadly, WLOS ABC News Channel 13 also reports that the driver was not buckled up at the time of the crash. Very few details have been released, as the cause of the crash is still under investigation with local law enforcement authorities.

U.S. Seat Belt Safety Facts

• In 2012, seat belts saved an estimated 12,174 lives.
• From 2008 to 2012, almost 63,000 lives were saved thanks to seat belts.
• In 2012, an additional 3,031 lives could have been saved if all unrestrained occupants ages five and older were buckled up at the time of their crashes.
• 66 percent of pickup truck occupants who were killed in car crashes were not buckled up.
• 62 percent of 18 to 34-year-old passenger vehicle occupants killed in car crashes were not buckled up.

Seat Belt Safety in Asheville

Improving seat belt safety in North Carolina and across the country needs to be a top priority for motorists. Drivers should always set a good example for passengers of all ages by using their seat belts for every trip. Since a large majority of passenger occupants are also children, size and age-appropriate restraint systems should always be utilized, whether it's a rear-facing car seat or a booster seat. Improving roadway safety for communities in Greenville and the surrounding areas starts with buckling up.

Fatal and Injury Causing Crashes

Fatal and injury-causing crashes are devastating for families and communities in and around Asheville and Greenville. Whether you're recovering from an accident, or you've lost a loved one, an experienced legal team can help to answer your questions and be your advocate during a difficult time. The team at Davis Law Group, P.A. sends their deepest condolences to the family members and friends of the victim.

January 8, 2015

Mauldin Police Officer Killed in Motorcycle Crash

On Monday evening, a 22-year-old Mauldin police officer was killed in a motorcycle crash. According to WLOS ABC News Channel 13, the incident happened at the intersection of West Butler Road and Cary Street.

For currently unknown reasons, Austin Gotowka lost control of his bike and slid through the intersection. There was another vehicle involved, but there's no word on what happened with that vehicle. As of Tuesday, the driver had not been cited, but very few details have been released about the investigation. Gotowka was wearing a helmet at the time of the wreck.

The team at Davis Law Group, P.A. sends their deepest condolences to the family members and friends of Austin Gotowka.

January 6, 2015

Pisgah Forest Fatal Wreck

Last week, a fatal chain-reaction crash occurred in Transylvania County. According to WLOS ABC News Channel 13, the incident happened on Asheville Highway 280 in the Pisgah Forest area. Although very few details about how this crash happened have been released, we do know that a vehicle crossed over the center lane of the roadway and struck another automobile. The initial collision caused a chain reaction. At least two other vehicles were involved in the crash, and 80-year-old Robert James Giuduci was killed.

Three other people were hospitalized for injuries, but there's no word on their current conditions. There's also no explanation for why the initial car crossed over the centerline. Could it have been a case of distracted driving? Did the driver have a medical emergency or a mechanical problem with the car?

Dangerous Roadways Around Asheville

Apparently, this isn't the first crash to happen on this particular stretch of roadway. Local residents report that they've seen multiple car accidents in this area over the past few years. One woman refuses to let her children play in the front yard due to the danger involved. It may be time for officials to take a closer look at roadway configuration or other factors that make this part of the road notoriously dangerous.

Distracted Driving in Asheville

It's also not uncommon for drivers to veer out of their lanes or cross centerlines when distractions are involved. Distracted driving puts everybody on the road at great risk. There is even research that suggests distracted drivers have slower reaction times than alcohol impaired drivers. Texting-while-driving isn't the only type of distracted driving either. Anything that takes the driver's attention away from the task at hand is considered a distraction.

If you or a loved one has been injured in a crash involving a distracted driver, contact a skilled personal injury attorney as soon as possible. Additional investigative efforts may be necessary to determine the cause of the crash. The team at Davis Law Group, P.A. sends their deepest condolences to the family members and friends of Robert James Giuduci and wishes speedy and full recoveries to all of the injured victims involved.

December 24, 2014

Semi Truck Crash on I-26

On Friday, WLOS ABC News Channel 13's Facebook page reported on a semi truck crash on I-26. Very few details were released, but we know that the wreck involved a minivan and a tractor trailer. The incident happened in the westbound lanes of I-26, near Ferry Road or mile marker 34.

Traffic was slowed down to about 20 miles per hour in the area as crews and first responders worked the scene. There's no word on whether or not anybody was injured, or how the crash happened. The cause is likely still under investigation with authorities.

How to Avoid Collisions with Commercial Vehicles
Many motorists make the mistake of driving alongside an 18 wheeler. This is very dangerous driving for anyone. A significant percentage of all tractor trailer collisions occur when a tractor trailer suddenly changes lanes. Due to the size of these large commercial trucks, they have a huge blind spot that make changing lanes a very dangerous activity. Truck drivers are trained not to change lanes without first looking to their side to make sure there is not a vehicle sitting in their blind spot. Unfortunately, however, many truck drivers look only in their side mirror and do not actually turn their head to look in the lane beside them. As a result, many passenger vehicle drivers find themselves in the danger zone with no where to go. To avoid the danger zone, simply do not attempt to pass an 18 wheeler unless you have a clear path all the way past the big rig. If there is another vehicle in front of you, you should wait until that vehicle has completely passed the 18 wheeler before you begin your passing maneuver. Once you start to pass the 18 wheeler, then continue to make your passing maneuver so that you go all the way past the big truck. You should also avoid attempting to pass an 18 wheeler on bridges and in areas where there is a concrete median. You should always leave yourself an escape path in the event of a unexpected movement by a commercial truck.

Another danger zone exists when traffic suddenly slows down or comes to a complete stop on the interstate. This is particularly dangerous at night when visibility is low and truck drivers are more prone to be sleepy. In this situation, you should keep a careful watch on the traffic behind you. Many fatal crashes have occurred as a result of tired truck drivers running into slow or stopped vehicles on the interstate. To safeguard against this situation, we suggest activating your hazard lights / emergency flashers as long as traffic is moving slowly or stopped. Also, if you see an 18 wheeler, or any vehicle for that matter, approaching from behind and they do not appear to be slowing down well before they get close to your vehicle, then you should quickly move your vehicle off of the paved surface. You can always re-enter the highway after the truck driver has slowed his vehicle or even passed on by.

Crashes involving semi trucks can be catastrophic and even fatal for drivers and occupants in smaller traditional vehicles. If you or a loved one has been injured in a truck accident, contact the skilled team at Davis Law Group, P.A. at 866-397-2897 for a free case consultation today.