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Belgrade, Montana Personal Injury Blog

Gun maker facing third lawsuit over accidental discharges

Gun manufacturer SIG Sauer finds itself on the wrong side of yet another potential class-action suit. The cases involve instances of one of its most popular weapons discharging without the trigger being pulled.

Multiple people, including law enforcement officers, say they were injured when their P320 pistol fired on its own. One transit police force recently took the weapon out of service after one officer's weapon reportedly discharged on its own inside a subway station.

Winter driving tips for Belgrade residents

The calendar may insist it is still fall, but there is no doubt that wintry weather has descended upon Belgrade. With such a long season of cold, ice and snow ahead, it is important to always drive safely when you are behind the wheel.

Research studies by AAA's Foundation for Traffic Safety determined that over 2,000 traffic fatalities occur every year that are attributed to poor road conditions and winter snowstorms. Of course, auto accidents can and do happen during all seasons of the year. But it is particularly wise to exercise caution when winter weather conditions prevail. Below are some driving tips from AAA that Belgrade drivers may find useful this winter.

Should you keep your car or buy a new one after a crash?

If your car has been damaged in a crash, one of the decisions you'll need to make -- unless it's been totaled -- is whether it's better to have it repaired or to buy a new one. There are a number of factors to consider. Some are financial. Others are more emotional.

First, determine how much it will cost to get your car repaired. If the crash was another driver's fault, their insurance should cover all of the costs associated with the repair.

Making car travel safe for you and your dog

Many Montana residents wouldn't consider going on a weekend camping trip without their dogs. Many of us also drive our dogs to all sorts of places around town -- the dog park, the groomer, the kids' softball games, and of course, the dreaded vet.

Montana, like most states, doesn't have specific laws requiring that dogs be secured in a carrier, by a harness or other restraint while in a vehicle. However, for everyone's safety (including your dog's), it's best not to allow them free rein in the car. They can pose a major distraction to you while you're driving. They can also be seriously injured if you're in an accident or even if you have to stop suddenly.

When can you sue for negligence with firearms?

If you're injured or a loved one gets killed by a gun, you may be able to file a civil lawsuit for negligence under certain circumstances. One of these involves negligent or dangerous use of the weapon. For example, maybe someone was loading their weapon near you without putting the safety on and you were struck by a bullet.

In these cases, if the defendant was somehow involved in the negligence, they would likely bear at least some of the responsibility. For example, if several people are playing Russian roulette and one of them gets shot, that person likely can't hold the shooter fully responsible for their injury since they were a willing participant in this dangerous "game."

2 killed by semitruck driven by a 17-year-old Hardin man

Two people were killed and another one was injured last month on Highway 313 when a teen driving a semitruck veered into their lane, according to the Montana Highway Patrol (MHP). The fatal crash occurred on Sunday, Aug. 25 between Hardin and St. Xavier in Big Horn County.

The county coroner called it a "horrific crash." The two men who were killed were 58 and 67. The age of the woman who was injured wasn't reported. The 17-year-old driver of the semi, which was transporting an empty grain trailer, wasn't hurt.

Serious accident trends in Montana

If you're interested in the risks of driving and the odds of getting seriously injured in a crash, it is important to look at the statistics for the specific area where you drive. National statistics can help to paint a broad picture, but you should never assume that the driving conditions in California or New York are all that similar to the conditions in Montana. There are stark differences that you must take into account.

Fortunately, the government breaks up crash data by state, and so their reports can shed light on your specific risks. Let's take a look at some of these critical statistics.

Some all-too-common dangerous driving behaviors to avoid

Most people don't consider themselves bad drivers. However, many of us slip into bad driving habits. This is particularly true when we're on our daily commute to and from work, running errands around town or driving other familiar routes. We feel safe because we drive these roads all the time. Often, our minds are on other things besides what's going on around us. This complacency can be a recipe for tragedy.

Let's look at some all-too-common things drivers do that can lead to a serious crash:

Tips for staying safe during your work commute

Many car crashes occur during the morning and evening rush hours. That's when many roads are at their busiest, with people driving to and from work.

During their commute to work and back home, drivers are often running late and in a hurry. Their minds are at the office or on things going on at home. Many are dealing with phone calls, texts and emails, which are distracting even when they're using hands-free technology in their car.

Will Supreme Court take up lawsuit against Remington?

The U.S. Supreme Court has been reluctant in recent years to hear any cases that deal with Second Amendment issues. However, for the first time in almost a decade, the court has agreed to hear one such case when the justices return in October. The case involves how much control a city can have over gun owners' rights to transport their weapons.

There are two other gun-related cases that those on both sides hope the justices will also decide to hear. One of those is the Remington Arms Co. v. Soto case. The case stems from the shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary school in 2012 in which 21 first-graders along with six adults were killed by the shooter who then took his own life.

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Ramler Law Office, P.C.
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Belgrade, MT 59714

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