All parents should know that at certain ages their children need to be in proper child safety seats when riding in a vehicle but also that everyone needs to be in a seat belt at all times. A recent incident that could have easily resulted in a tragedy highlights the importance of this commonsense safety measure.
If you own and ride a motorcycle, then you appreciate the feeling of freedom and independence that comes with hitting the open road, weaving around traffic, and the quick and easy acceleration that comes with most bikes. Most motorcycle riders are careful, cautious and courteous riders because they also understand the risks that come with riding and the importance of being adequately insured. Because of their size, motorcycles are sometimes invisible to other motorists. When making turns at intersections and entering an adjoining lane, drivers can easily misjudge the speed and distance of a motorcycle, if they even notice them, and will cross directly into their path. In most accidents at even moderate speeds, the results are often tragic.
If you drive in Massachusetts it may have crossed your mind that the traffic and roads here are likely the worst ever. The truth is that you are not that far off. A new study from WalletHub put out a list of the best and worst states to drive in. We came in as the 7th worst in the country.
In two separate hit-and-run incidents involving young children, Massachusetts police were able to identify and charge two persons with leaving the scene of an accident involving injury or death, which is a felony.
In an April, 2017 incident in Milford, police arrested a 54-year old woman whose vehicle was seen on surveillance video after the accident that killed a 4-year old boy. The woman, who saw her vehicle from the video on the news, curiously showed up at a police station shortly after the accident and told police the damage to her car was from a tree branch. An investigation revealed the woman had fabricated the story and arrested her. Witnesses at the scene described the vehicle as having briefly stopped after the boy was hit before speeding off. Police are using this to show that the accused was aware that she had struck someone before fleeing. Along with fleeing the scene of an accident with injury resulting in death, the woman is charged with misleading police officers in an investigation.
In Massachusetts, the Arlington Board of Selectmen has acknowledged that future of driving is likely in autonomous vehicles. The town recently gave the nod to the town manager to pave the way for its streets to be a testing ground for autonomous or self-driving cars. Currently, there are two autonomous car companies operating in the Boston area: nuTonomy and Optimus Ride. A number of companies are applying to test their vehicles in Arlington, which requires them to submit a test plan for approval.
If you are a motorist in Massachusetts, then encounters with potholes are nothing new. Massachusetts has been ranked as the worst state in the Union if you combine traffic and infrastructure with the Bay State. If you only consider infrastructure, we may not be the worst although our state was given a D+ grade by the American Society of Civil Engineers for 2017.
Whenever news of a car accident appears in a local newspaper, it usually portends tragedy. It was no different recently when the Vineyard Gazette reported the death of a high school senior from injuries sustained in a car accident in early January. The accident occurred on Middle Road near Tea Lane in Chilmark just before 8:00 am on a Friday morning. According to police, the decedent driver may have been unable to safely negotiate a curve. The driver apparently veered his vehicle to the left side of the road and then to the right before leaving the road, struck a tree, and then traveled down an embankment. Two teenage passengers were treated for non-life-threatening injuries. Police and EMT personnel at the scene were unable to save the teen.
A fatal accident involving a car and a pedestrian that occurred in Salem over 4-years ago recently ended up in criminal court before a judge. The judge found the woman accused of negligent motor vehicle homicide and leaving the scene of an accident not guilty on all counts. The defendant had faced up to 10-years in prison. The court considered a number of factors in finding her innocent:
Truck accidents often result in catastrophic injuries or fatalities. A tractor-trailer can weigh as much as 80,000 pounds or more when fully loaded as compared to a passenger car that typically weighs about 4000 to 5,000 pounds, or less. A pickup truck weighs between 4400 pounds and 6000 pounds. When a truck and a pickup or passenger car collide, there is no question as to which occupants face the most risk of serious injury or death.
A recent tragic car accident that claimed the life of a 28-year old Oxford, Massachusetts, woman might have been prevented had the young woman been wearing her seatbelt. The accident occurred on December 9, 2017, on Sutton Avenue near Fort Hill Road and Lovett Road. No details were reported on the cause of the accident but police reports indicated the woman was ejected from her vehicle and was found lying on the roadway. The fact she was ejected strongly suggests she was not restrained in her seat at the moment of impact.