Distracted Driving and Young Drivers

Courtney Allen Van Winkle, Richmond, VA Personal Injury Attorney

Author: Courtney Allen Van Winkle, Personal Injury Attorney

With the weather warming up, there are plenty of young drivers on the road enjoying their new found freedom.  As the number of young drivers increases, unfortunately so does the risk of automobile accidents.  According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the leading causes of teen car crashes are driver inexperience, alcohol and drug use, driving in inclement weather, risky behavior such as speeding, and driver distractions in the car.

When one mentions distracted driving, texting and driving immediately comes to mind.  Under Virginia law, Code § 46.2-1078.1, it is unlawful to operate a moving motor vehicle…

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National Work Zone Awareness Week Saves Lives

Edward L. Allen, Fredericksburg, VA Personal Injury Attorney

Author: Edward L. Allen, Personal Injury Attorney

April 9-13, 2018 marks National Work Zone Awareness Week. As a personal injury attorney, I know firsthand how devastating work zone accidents can be. Safe driving habits in highway work zones protect not only Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) workers, but also help ensure the safety of everyone on the roadways. The theme of this year’s Awareness Week is “Work Zone Safety: Everybody's Responsibility.” [1] The goal of the spring campaign is to encourage drivers to use extra caution in highway work zones.

Work zone accidents often happen when drivers do not have their full attention on the road.  This short video shows a VDOT…

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Following at a Safe Distance


Author: R. Christopher Jones, Richmond, VA Personal Injury Attorney

Vehicles are becoming more sophisticated every year as automakers introduce more equipment aimed at creating a safer driving experience.  Recently, crash prevention systems have been introduced to reduce rear-end collisions, and for good reason - the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) estimates that over 40% of the car accidents on U.S. roads (2.5 million) are rear-enders. In some vehicles, the technology is so advanced that they can brake automatically to avoid objects. In the future, these automated systems may become standard equipment.  Until that day, drivers must take affirmative steps to avoid these…

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Passing on the Right

Ashley T. Davis, Richmond, VA Personal Injury Attorney

Author: Ashley T. Davis, Richmond, VA Personal Injury Attorney

All states allow drivers to use the left lane to pass a slower moving vehicle, as long as there is more than one lane traveling in the same direction. But have you ever wondered whether – and when – it is permissible to pass a vehicle on the right?

The answer to this question depends upon the state in which you are driving. In most states, it is legal to pass on the right under certain conditions.

In Virginia, a driver is allowed to pass another vehicle on the right:[1]

When the other vehicle is making or is about to make a left turn, and its driver has given the required signal;[2] On a roadway that is wide…

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Safe Stopping Distances and Headlights

Paul D. Hux, Chesterfield, VA Personal Injury Attorney

Author: Paul D. Hux, Chesterfield, VA Personal Injury Attorney

A study by the American Automobile Association (AAA) revealed that most automobile headlamps are inadequate on low-beam setting for drivers to safely react to obstacles in the roadway. According to AAA’s research, it takes approximately 500 feet for a vehicle traveling 55 miles per hour to identify, react to, and safely stop before encountering an obstacle.[1] However, halogen headlamps, installed in about 80% of U.S. automobiles, only illuminate up to around 300 feet in front of each vehicle while on the low-beam setting. High-intensity discharge lights reach about 400 feet while light-emitting diode lights fall close to 450 feet. They still…

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School Bus Safety Tips

Edward L. Allen, Fredericksburg, VA Personal Injury Attorney

Author: Edward L. Allen, Fredericksburg, VA Personal Injury Attorney

New clothes, school supply lists and heavy backpacks are all signs that the school year is underway. Yellow school buses are now part of many driver's morning commute. School Bus Safety week, held each year in October[1], helps encourage safety for everyone involved. 

Getting On and Off a School Bus Safely

Getting on and off school buses is likely the riskiest part of riding a school bus.[2] Often, children have to cross a street to get to the bus stop, which raises the risk of traffic accidents.[3] Other times, children may not wait until the school bus comes to a complete stop before approaching the bus.[4] Make sure children…

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Back to School and Behind the Wheel

James Mick

Author: James Mick "Jamie" Kessel, Richmond, VA Personal Injury Lawyer


The beginning of the school year signifies a shift from a leisurely summer schedule to a busy one filled with school and sports activities. Parents of teen drivers often welcome the presence of an additional driver as an opportunity to be relieved of some of the burdens of shuttling their kids between activities. Before doing so, parents should meet with their kids and discuss the importance of safe driving. To start the conversation with your teen driver, watch this video together and discuss it. This video is really powerful and is a good one for parents to share with their kids.

It's important…

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Motor Vehicle Safety Tips: Proper Tire Care

Charles L. Allen, Richmond, VA Personal Injury Attorney

Author: Charles L. Allen, Richmond, VA Personal Injury Attorney

Tire safety can be one of the most important - and overlooked - aspects of vehicle safety. Proper, regular tire inspections and tire maintenance can extend the life of your tires, and ensure your safety while driving. Many people take road trips on long weekends or summer vacation, and might not think to check their tires before driving - this is a mistake. Always remember that your tires are the only thing between you and the road, and as such, it is important that you take good care of them.

Inspect your tires regularly

The first step to proper tire care is regular inspections. At a minimum, tire inspections should be conducted…

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Items Hanging From Rearview Mirrors Are Illegal in Virginia

Melinda H. South, Richmond, VA Personal Injury Attorney

Author: Melinda H. South, Richmond, VA Personal Injury Attorney

What do you have dangling from your rearview mirror? In Virginia, anything hanging in your line of sight could be a reason for a police officer to pull you over.

Remember when fuzzy dice were popular items hanging from the rearview mirror? If you are too young to remember that, what about graduation tassels, crucifixes, or air fresheners? Whatever is hanging from the rearview mirror in your car should be removed in order to prevent a citation.

According to Va. Code 46.2-1054, “It shall be unlawful for any person to drive a motor vehicle on the highway in the Commonwealth with any object or objects, other than a rear…

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A Victory for Transportation: Uber Legalized and Regulated in Virginia


Author: Ryan E. Wind, Mechanicsville, VA Personal Injury Attorney

Alternate transportation services such as Uber and Lyft have changed the way we look at cab rides, but lack of regulation and insurance have caused many people to question how long these new businesses can last. Virginia is taking new steps to regulate and track the industry in an effort to improve safety and standardize practices.

According to a law signed by Governor McAuliffe in February of 2015, all drivers for these services must now undergo a background check, be at least twenty-one years of age, and have a valid driver’s license.  All vehicles must also be registered with the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) by July 1,…

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