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Are drivers ready for autonomous vehicles?

If you are like a lot of people in Illinois, you may be watching how many vehicle manufacturers and technology companies are racing to get fully autonomous vehicles on the roads and wondering just how ready consumers really are. One might assume that consumers are becoming more comfortable with these vehicles but a newly completed survey by AAA suggests the opposite is actually true.

A report in Gizmodo shows that roughly two years ago at the beginning of 2017, 78 percent of people said they would have been too scared to be a passenger in a fully self-driving car. By the end of that year, trust seemed to increase as only 63 percent of people said they were too afraid of riding in an autonomous vehicle. Instead of that trend continuing, the latest survey shows that now the number of consumers scared of being passengers in these vehicles has increased eight percent to 71 percent.

Can lost truck tires give us important information?

When a large commercial truck loses a tire on an Illinois road, it is tempting to simply throw the old tire away and not give it a second thought. However, a destroyed tire can actually be important. Instead of disposing of the tire at the first opportunity, it is a better move to study the discarded or damaged tire to help identify the cause of the incident and prevent future problems on the road.

As Truckinfo.com explains, mechanical trouble will often leave evidence on the tires themselves. For instance, a steer tire with feathered wear indicates that the tire was misaligned in some fashion. To take another example, a steer tire may feature some scalloped wear and cupping. This can indicate non-concentric mounting. It may also show that the tires were mounted out of balance.

Cognitive distraction and hands-free cellphones

In Illinois and in several other states in the nation, it is illegal to use a hand-held cellphone while behind the wheel. This legislation was put in place to reduce the number of people who are killed and injured in distracted driving accidents each year. As a result, many drivers have started using hands-free cellphones as a safe and legal alternative. However, studies show that hands-free cellphones are a significant source of cognitive distraction and may still lead to catastrophic car accidents.

The study, released by AAA, looked at the amount of cognitive distraction that is caused when motorists engage in certain tasks while driving a car equipped with monitoring devices, as well as a simulator vehicle. Researchers measured participants’ heart rate, brain activity, eye movement and response time while they engaged in the following tasks:

  •          Listening to an audio book
  •          Listening to the radio
  •          Talking with a passenger in the vehicle
  •          Composing an email using voice-activated technology
  •          Talking with someone using a hands-free cellphone
  •          Talking with someone using a hand-held cellphone

Be sure to write down the details after a serious collision

A car accident is a confusing and traumatizing event. The time immediately following a collision can feel chaotic, and if you end up needing immediate medical attention you might not even have time to get a solid grasp on the recent events. However, writing things down as soon as possible can be essential for any future personal injury claims.

Taking notes on your crash is important because memory can change or even fade over relatively short periods of time. If you cannot physically write down your notes because of injury, ask a trusted friend or loved one to transcribe your notes. When writing down your recollections, try to touch on some of the following topics.

Taking a look at travel and family law

In recent years, travel has become increasingly popular. With access to an incredible amount of information online, affordable flights and a barrage of travel content on social media, many people enjoy visiting other parts of the country and traversing the globe. Moreover, some people travel for business purposes as well. Travel is often seen as glamorous, but it can create problems in relationships for a number of reasons, and there are various family law considerations when it comes to travel as well.

Some couples may head overseas for the first time and become so bitter with each other during the trip that their marriage ultimately falls apart. Or, someone may regularly leave their spouse behind, such as someone who travels for business purposes, and this could cause their marriage to crumble. Sometimes, people have affairs while they are traveling, or they may be financially irresponsible on their trips. These are just some of the reasons why relationship problems can arise due to traveling.

A third of American teenagers say they text and drive

Sharing the road with teenage drivers is an inevitable part of life for most Illinois residents, but even the safest, most conscientious teen drivers present a threat to the public due to a lack of experience. While this inexperience can make drivers less sure of what to do in the event of a car wreck or otherwise impact their judgment, many teen drivers are engaging in behaviors that make them even more dangerous to the motoring public. At the Law Office of Kerley & Associated, we understand that texting and driving continues to be a major problem among teenagers, and we have helped many people injured in distracted driving car crashes pursue appropriate recourse in the aftermath.

According to Reuters, the texting and driving problem continues to be pervasive among teenagers, even though the media, driver’s education programs and other sources have well-publicized the dangers associated with doing so. In a recent survey involving more than 101,300 teenage drivers from 35 states, an alarming 38 percent of them reported that they had texting while operating a vehicle at some time or another.

Spousal support in Illinois

If you are going through a divorce in Illinois, you may be wondering if you will be responsible to pay spousal support or, if you make less than your spouse, if you will be the recipient of support. The judge will take into consideration a variety of factors when determining what, if any, money a spouse may pay to the other, and it may be a temporary installment or longer term.

According to FindLaw, the court weighs a number of factors before deciding if support, also known as alimony or maintenance, is appropriate. These considerations include

  • The assets and income of each spouse
  • The earning ability, and sources of income, of each party
  • The financial needs and current standard of living of each spouse
  • The length of the marriage
  • Contributions of the one seeking alimony towards the education, training or other career support of the other party
  • Tax consequences of maintenance and division of property

What are the warning signs that a dog attack may occur?

Regardless of whether or not you own a dog or are around people who own pets, understanding how to protect yourself if you are attacked by a dog in Illinois is important to your safety and well-being. Often, dogs are provoked in some way and their ultimate reaction is to attack if they feel endangered. As such, educating yourself about how to prevent attacks is critical to understanding how to properly behave around a dog. 

If you have children, put emphasis on the importance of being respectful of a dog's space to avoid interfering and creating a dangerous situation that could have easily been prevented. If you own a dog, do your part to train your four-legged friend about how to behave around other people and animals. If you know that your dog is skittish and easily spooked, you may be better off at securely locking him or her away until your guests leave especially if there will be small children or other pets. 

Following a car accident, injuries may take time to show

Every day, numerous Illinois residents are involved in motor vehicle accidents. The vast majority of these collisions are minor fender benders and thought to be no big deal. The truth is, even a minor car accident can cause you to suffer injuries -- you just may not know you have received an injury right away.

Delayed-onset injuries are a real thing. Pain and other injury symptoms can take hours, days or even weeks to present themselves. If you are experiencing delayed-onset injuries following a car crash, you may seek compensation for your losses.

Do you need a forensic accountant on your divorce team?

As someone currently embroiled in an Illinois divorce, you may be working through a broad range of issues, many of which will undoubtedly include dividing up your assets and debts. This is typically an unavoidable part of any divorce, but the process can prove far more complicated and involved for some couples than others.

Divorcing couples with considerable assets, complicated assets or distrust between them may, per Forbes, find it useful to add forensic accountants to their divorce teams. These accounting professionals are becoming increasingly commonplace in modern divorce proceedings, and they may be able to assist divorcing parties as they navigate a wide assortment of issues.

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Law Office of Kerley & Associates
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Springfield, IL 62703

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