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Belgrade, Montana Personal Injury Blog

Who is most likely to drive drowsy?

Drowsy driving is a serious problem in Montana, as well as in the rest of the country. It appears that some drivers don't understand the importance of pulling over if they're not 100 percent alert.

While drowsy driving can impact anyone, some people are more likely to face this than others. These groups include:

  • Anyone who doesn't get the recommended amount of sleep before hitting the road
  • Commercial drivers who spend many consecutive hours on the road (often without a break)
  • Shift workers who who work at night and sleep during the day
  • Anyone taking medication that has the potential to cause drowsiness
  • Drivers with sleep disorders like sleep apnea that prohibit them from getting enough rest
  • Consuming alcohol before driving

It’s easy to make one of these car insurance claim mistakes

If you're injured in a car accident, it's only natural to receive treatment and then turn your attention to filing an insurance claim. While this is important, getting ahead of yourself can result in a mistake that costs you money in the long run.

Here are four car insurance claim mistakes that are easy to make:

  • Providing a recorded or written statement: You're not required to do so, so it's good practice to politely decline. It's best to review your policy and understand your legal rights before speaking with any insurance company representative.
  • Signing a waiver or release: Your insurance company may ask you to sign a variety of documents, some of which you don't understand. Doing so prematurely can put you at risk of receiving less money than you deserve.
  • Accepting a check for final payment: You shouldn't cash a check noted as final payment until you're sure that you're ready to bring the claims process to an end. Your insurer may try to slip this past you.
  • Don't get pushed around: Your insurance company may attempt to push you around, hoping you go away without putting up much of a fight. You have a contract with them, so insist that they live up to their obligation.

Tips for driving safely in a spring rain storm

The spring season always brings rain to the area. As a driver, you must pay attention to any change in weather conditions, as this will impact your driving style and approach.

Here are four tips for driving safely in the rain this spring:

  • Slow down: Even if you do nothing else, this may be enough to prevent an accident. Speeding on wet roadways increases the risk of hydroplaning, which could result in a serious accident.
  • Use your headlights: This improves visibility, allowing you to more easily spot other vehicles, puddles and hazards. It also makes your vehicle easier to see.
  • Don't use cruise control: Using this on slick surfaces increases the risk of an accident since you're not actively controlling your speed. It's best to turn cruise control off, move into the right lane (if you're on the highway) and slow down.
  • Pass with caution: It's not always easy to pass another vehicle in rainy conditions, as you have to be careful about your speed. Furthermore, you don't want to do anything that will cause trouble for another driver, such as passing in the right lane or cutting them off.

How safe is your rifle?

Gun safety courses review the best practices for handling a firearm safely. But, in addition to knowing how to handle this dangerous weapon, it's also important to know if you shouldn't be handling it at all.

This rifle, in particular, can be very dangerous.

Safe driving in a construction zone is a must

Driving through a construction zone can be fraught with danger. You could face a variety of unique circumstances, such as shifting lanes and workers in close proximity to your vehicle.

It's critical to focus on safety when driving through a construction zone, as one mistake can cause an accident that results in injury or death.

Reckless driving is a common cause of car accidents

Any form of reckless driving increases the risk of an accident. So, if you see someone who is not obeying the rules of the road, it's best to keep your distance as to avoid an accident.

There are many types of reckless driving, with these among the most common:

  • Excessive speeding: For example, if someone is driving in excess of 25 mph over the speed limit, police typically consider it a reckless driving act.
  • Racing another vehicle: This happens both on the highway and in the city, among people who know each other and complete strangers. Racing not only puts those involved in danger, but it does the same to other drivers and pedestrians.
  • Illegal passing: A common example of this is passing a vehicle on a two-lane road with a solid lane line.
  • Attempting to elude a law enforcement officer: This typically happens when a person tries to speed away from an officer attempting to pull them over for breaking the law.

Don’t make these mistakes when yielding onto a highway

As you travel down a highway on-ramp, it won't be long before you see a yield sign ahead. This gives you notice that you need to take great caution as you merge into the flow of traffic.

Even if you have many years of driving experience, there's something tricky about yielding onto a highway. You could make a variety of mistakes, including but not limited to the following:

  • Neglecting to use a turn signal: Even though other drivers should see your vehicle, it's your responsibility to use a turn signal to make your intentions clear.
  • Coming to a complete stop: It's in your best interest to keep a steady speed down the on-ramp so that you can easily merge into the flow of traffic. Coming to a stop makes it more difficult to yield, as getting up to speed will take more time.
  • Assuming others will make room: Don't assume that other drivers will move out of the lane so you have space to yield. While courteous drivers will attempt to do so if possible, this doesn't always happen.

Watch out for aggressive drivers

An aggressive driver can seemingly pop up out of nowhere. One second, you're driving along, and everything is going as planned. But the next, an aggressive driver is in close proximity to your vehicle, and you have concerns about your safety.

The best thing you can do if you spot an aggressive driver is keep your distance. Even if it's an inconvenience, you're better off moving out of the way and letting this person through.

Experienced hunters often forget about gun safety

As an experienced hunter, it's easy to fall into the trap of thinking you know everything. This is a major problem when it comes to gun safety, as you could make a mistake that puts you or someone around you at risk.

Regardless of how much experience you have using guns, it's important to live by the mantra "safety comes first." While there are many gun safety tips to follow, these five are among the most important:

  • Always point the muzzle in a safe direction: This sounds like common sense, but it's easy to forget when you are in the woods and focused on something else. If you never point your gun at something you don't want to shoot, there's no chance of an accident.
  • Unload your gun when not in use: Some hunters unintentionally make this mistake, while others are in the habit of never unloading their gun. It's better to be safe than sorry, so always unload your gun and store it in a safe place.
  • Don't assume the "safety" is foolproof: Although the "safety" is there for a reason, no mechanical device is foolproof. Furthermore, it's easy to think the safety is on, just to find that this isn't the case.
  • Think before you shoot: Although hunters have to react fast in many cases, you need to be 100 percent sure of your target, as well as what's beyond it, before you pull the trigger. There's no such thing as a do-over, so you need to know exactly what you're shooting at.
  • Wear protection: Eye and ear protection is a must, not only when you're hunting but also when you're cleaning or repairing your gun.

Do these things if you spot a dangerous driver

It doesn't matter if you're driving on the highway or city streets, you could come across a dangerous driver at any point. If this happens, you should immediately think about the steps you can take to protect yourself.

Here are three things you must do if you spot a dangerous driver:

  • Watch them at all times: It's not good enough to know that someone is driving in a dangerous manner. You must now keep your eyes on them, as this can help you think a couple steps ahead.
  • Take great caution: For example, if a driver is speeding on the highway and illegally passing others, get out of the way and let them travel up the road ahead of you. It's better to take caution than to put yourself in harm's way.
  • Report them to the authorities: You don't need to call 911 every time you see a driver make a mistake. However, if someone is being extremely dangerous, it's important to contact the authorities. Upon calling 911, tell the dispatcher what you saw, the make and model of the vehicle, the license plate number and your location. They can then dispatch local police to the scene.
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Ramler Law Office, P.C.
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Belgrade, MT 59714

Phone: 406-924-4810
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