January 5th, 2022|
The next time you’re stopped at a red light in Middle Tennessee, take a look around you. How many other drivers are looking at their phones? And while checking your phone at a red light may not seem dangerous, many people look at their phones while their vehicles are in motion, too. In fact, it’s not uncommon to see drivers texting while driving 70 mph or faster on the interstate.
Distracted driving is a growing problem throughout the U.S., including Tennessee. As smartphones become more and more integrated into our lives, many people find it difficult to put them away for any amount of time, even when they are driving! But studies show that it’s impossible to truly multi-task, especially when you are dividing your attention away from the task of driving.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration is working hard to stop distracted driving, and it asks all drivers to take a pledge to end this growing epidemic. Drivers who take the pledge say they will:
- Never text or talk on the phone while driving.
- Speak out if the driver becomes distracted while they’re a passenger.
- Encourage their family and friends to drive phone-free.
When distracted drivers cause crashes, we hold them accountable and liable for damages. If you or someone you love was injured in a distracted driving crash, our Nashville car accident lawyers can help. Contact Ponce Law today for a free consultation.
December 29th, 2021|
Many people are eager to put 2021 behind them and celebrate the arrival of 2022, but this year’s celebrations may look a little different than last year’s. Although COVID is still a threat to many people in Tennessee, there will likely be more gatherings at homes, restaurants, and bars than last year. That means there’s a greater likelihood of buzzed and drunk drivers on Nashville’s streets.
Drunk driving is one of the biggest risk factors for fatal crashes both for intoxicated drivers and the people they collide with. Keep these tips in mind if you’re planning on being out and about this New Year’s Eve:
- Don’t drive after drinking.
If you plan on drinking, get a sober ride home. Whether it’s appointing a designated driver, calling a cab, or using a rideshare app, there are plenty of ways to ensure you get home safely.
- Don’t stay out too late.
The later you stay out on New Year’s Eve and into New Year’s Day, the more likely you are to encounter drunk drivers. If you stay out past midnight, plan to get home soon after the clock strikes midnight.
- Drive defensively.
Even if you’re 100% sober, there’s a good chance some of the drivers around you aren’t. Be cautious and drive as though the people around you don’t see your vehicle.
No one plans on spending New Year’s Day in the hospital, but it will be a reality for many drivers in Tennessee. If it happens to you after a crash that wasn’t your fault, Ponce Law is here to help. Contact our Nashville auto accident lawyers for a free consultation.
December 22nd, 2021|
COVID fears caused a significant number of Tennesseans to stay home and avoid family gatherings in 2020, but AAA predicts that the number of travelers will increase by 35% in the state in 2021. Many of those travelers will get to their destinations using the state’s many highways and interstates, and that means heavier traffic volumes and an increased risk of accidents.
If you’re traveling for the holidays, keep these tips in mind:
- Map your route ahead of time.
Don’t map while driving, as doing so can be distracting. When you map your destination before you leave home, you get an advanced notice of traffic conditions and can avoid work zones and other potential hazards.
- Secure all presents, food dishes, and other cargo.
There are few things more distracting than things sliding around or even spilling inside your vehicle. Don’t risk losing focus while driving! Properly secure all items before leaving home or hand them to passengers to hold, provided they don’t block your view or interfere with seatbelt usage.
- Leave early.
Whether you’re driving across town, across the state, or across the country, give yourself plenty of time to get to your holiday gathering. When you aren’t rushing to get to dinner on time, you’ll be more likely to drive cautiously and safely, keeping yourself, your loved ones, and others safer on the road.
Nothing ruins a holiday more than an auto accident, especially when injuries are involved. At Ponce Law, our Nashville auto accident lawyers can help your family get compensation if you’re hurt in a crash that wasn’t your fault. Contact us today to find out how we can help.
December 8th, 2021|
During the past decade, the number of high-tech safety features on vehicles has skyrocketed. Beginning in May 2018, all new vehicles sold in the U.S. must have backup cameras. That feature alone makes backing up much safer, especially when children and pedestrians are nearby.
But that feature is just one of many that new vehicles tout. Other features include lane departure warnings, crash avoidance systems, blind spot warnings, and more. Some vehicles are even capable of driving themselves on highways and interstates, complete with automatic braking and acceleration in response to changing traffic patterns and the movements of other vehicles.
When combined with standard safety features like seatbelts, airbags, and safer vehicle designs, there’s never been a better or safer time to be on the road in Middle Tennessee. However, it’s important to not become too reliant on those safety features or get complacent while you’re driving. Right now, the best way to avoid a crash still revolves around being focused, aware, and cautious behind the wheel.
In addition, high-tech features can sometimes pose a risk in and of themselves by distracting drivers. The addition of backup cameras in particular means that all vehicles now have some degree of “infotainment” systems and touchscreens, which can be highly distracting while driving. Remember to keep your focus on the task at hand and not on your GPS, radio, or text messages.
At Ponce Law, we understand the challenges drivers face in our high-tech society, but when their negligence causes crashes, we hold them accountable. Contact our Nashville car accident lawyers if you or someone you love was hurt in a crash that wasn’t your fault.
October 20th, 2021|
Knowing how to change a flat tire is an essential skill that all drivers should know. Whether it’s due to a nail, glass, or blowout, experiencing a flat tire is something that almost everyone will deal with it at least once in their life. But there’s a big difference between being able to pull over into a parking lot and change your flat tire and having to do it on the side of a busy highway or interstate.
People who change flat tires or work on their vehicles on the side of major expressways face significant dangers. All it takes is a distracted driver allowing their vehicle to drift a few feet towards the shoulder or side of the road to seriously injure or even kill you. And these types of injuries and deaths are distressingly common.
Although Tennessee’s “Move Over” law now extends to all stopped vehicles with flashing lights, it’s not a law you can always count on. Many drivers still don’t observe it, and that means people who get out of their vehicles on the side of highways and interstates are at the mercy of people driving just a few feet away for them at speeds of well over 70 MPH.
Don’t risk it! Call a tow truck if you have a flat tire or experience vehicle troubles. You may pay a little more upfront for the tow, but it can save your life. Contact the Nashville auto accident lawyers at Ponce Law today for a free consultation after any crash that wasn’t your fault—we want to help you get full compensation.
October 13th, 2021|
Buying a vehicle, whether it’s used or new, is more expensive than ever. For many people, that means putting off a vehicle purchase for the foreseeable future. But if you’re planning on getting an extra 20,000 miles or so out of your family sedan, SUV, or minivan, you may need to dump a little cash into it to ensure it’s as safe and reliable as possible.
Here are three components that should always be in perfect working condition and tip-top shape regardless of your vehicle’s age:
- Brakes—When your brakes are severely worn, they become much less effective. It takes longer to slow down and stop, which increases your risk of a crash. And when brakes are pushed to the point of failure, you may be unable to stop at all, which is extremely dangerous.
- Tires—Tires should have plenty of tread and be free from damage and dry rot. Severely worn tires are a risk factor not only for losing control while driving, but also sudden blowouts. Tire blowouts can result in immediate loss of control and even rollovers, which are often deadly.
- Lights—Your lights are essential for driving at night and times of limited visibility. Not only do they illuminate your path, but they also make it possible for other drivers to see you. Check your headlights, high beams, fog lights, turn signals, and brake lights regularly and replace any burned out bulbs.
Drivers who cause crashes because they were driving dangerous and poorly maintained vehicles can be held liable. If you or someone you love is injured in a crash with a neglected vehicle, the Nashville auto accident lawyers at Ponce Law are here to talk.
August 18th, 2021|
Headphones and earbuds are one of the most commonly owned pieces of tech gear in the world. Almost everyone has at least one pair, and they’re often bundled with new smartphones. Whether wired or wireless, headphones and earbuds can provide a quick “escape” from your surroundings and allow you to immerse yourself in music, a podcast, or even just relaxing ambient noise.
But that immersion and escape can be extremely dangerous when you need your hearing to avoid accidents and injuries. Driving with headphones on means you may be unable to hear the sounds of nearby vehicles or emergency responders. That means you won’t be able to hear the sound of someone using their horn or the sound of an ambulance’s siren.
Riding a bicycle or walking with earbuds in can be even more dangerous. When you have no safety features to protect you, and you may not be seen by other drivers, you must do everything in your power to protect yourself and avoid a collision. And when you’re listening to music or a podcast, you aren’t getting all of the sensory information you need to be fully aware of your surroundings.
Finally, wearing headphones can be distracting, even if you have the volume low enough to still hear what’s going on around you. When you’re engrossed in a song or podcast, you aren’t giving the task at hand the attention it deserves, whether that’s driving, cycling, or walking safely.
At Ponce Law, we always encourage safe road habits, and we hold people who neglect them and then cause accidents accountable. Contact our Nashville auto accident lawyers today if you were injured by a negligent driver.
August 11th, 2021|
Parents have a lot on their plates when it comes to keeping their children happy, healthy, and safe. After so many years of keeping these three needs in check, the loss of control that parents experience when their children begin driving can be frightening and stressful.
Although safe driving habits can be taught and learned at any age, parents who instill them into their children from a young age often have an easier time getting them to abide—and getting to sleep at night. Here are three ways that parents can set good examples for their kids:
- Always buckling up—Wearing your seat belt is the most important thing you can do for reducing your risk of injury and death in a crash. Buckle up on every trip, regardless of how far you’re going.
- Never driving while distracted—Put your phone down when you start your vehicle and don’t pick it back up until you reach your destination. If you text or make phone calls while driving, your kids may grow up thinking it’s safe and okay to do so.
- Obeying the speed limit—Many people don’t speed intentionally. Instead, they do so because they’re running late or in fast-moving traffic. But when you speed, you send a message to your kids that speed limits are optional, making them more likely to speed, too.
Teaching good examples both long before your kids are licensed drivers and when they’re preparing for their driver’s license tests can help you turn them into safe and attentive drivers.
Unfortunately, not all drivers in Tennessee are safe or attentive, and when they cause crashes that injure others, we’re here to help. Call the Nashville auto accident lawyers at Ponce Law today for a free consultation if you’re hurt by a negligent driver.
August 4th, 2021|
School is almost back in session in Davidson County and throughout Middle Tennessee, and that means more traffic, more school buses, and reduced speed limits in school zones in the mornings and afternoons. This is an exciting time of year for children, parents, and teachers, but it can also be a dangerous time, especially as drivers re-acclimate to the hustle and bustle of morning and afternoon commutes to and from school.
To do your part in keeping Tennessee’s roads safe during this back-to-school season, keep these safety tips in mind:
- Obey crossing guards, not traffic lights. When you approach a school zone and there’s a crossing guard present, remember that he or she dictates right-of-way, not traffic lights or stop signs. Even if you arrive at an intersection first or have a green light, you shouldn’t proceed until you’re waved through.
- Never pass a bus that’s picking up or dropping off children. When bus drivers stop to pick up or drop off children, you are forbidden from passing them. Doing so isn’t just dangerous—it’s also illegal.
- Expect the unexpected—When you drive near schools and through residential areas before and after school, always be prepared for the unexpected. Children may be present and can run into the road at any time. Drive slowly and keep your eyes focused on the road ahead by avoiding distractions.
Following these tips can reduce your risks of being in a crash, but it can’t prevent it. Negligent drivers are everywhere, and when they cause crashes, our Nashville auto accident lawyers hold them accountable. Call Ponce Law if you or someone you love is hurt by a negligent driver—we want to help you get maximum compensation.
August 1st, 2021|
More than 10% of American adults say that they’re chronically sleep deprived, and 70% say that they’re sleep deprived at least one night a month. And the CDC says one in three adults don’t get enough sleep on a regular basis.
There are many complications associated with sleep deprivation, but the most dangerous is the effect it has on driving skills. When drivers are sleep deprived, they suffer from impairment that’s similar to being drunk. They may experience blurred vision, delayed reaction times, and exercise poor judgment behind the wheel.
The combination of these factors can make driving extremely dangerous. And yet if the statistics are accurate, a huge number of Tennesseans are driving while impaired every single day due to sleep deprivation. If you’re sleep deprived, it’s important to make a few changes to try and be more rested before your daily commute.
- Avoid screentime before bed. One of the most common causes of sleep deprivation today is screentime, especially right before bedtime. Avoid using your phone, computer, television, or tablet for at least one hour before you go to sleep.
- Avoid alcohol. Although alcohol can help some people fall asleep, it often leads to poor sleep quality. Abstaining from alcohol can make the sleep you get more restorative.
- Get treated for sleep apnea. A significant number of Americans suffer from sleep apnea, which severely disrupts sleep quality. Both a CPAP machine and lifestyle changes can help reduce the effects of sleep apnea and restore sleep quality.
At Ponce Law, we’re here to help those hurt by negligent drivers on TN’s roadways. If you or someone you love was injured by an impaired driver, our Nashville auto accident lawyers want to help. Contact us today for a free consultation.