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When you have questions concerning a potential car accident case, Hupy and Abraham will have your answer. Review extensive FAQ page for auto wrecks.
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The driver who hit my car was making a right turn on red, which I understand is legal in Wisconsin. Does that mean he isn’t responsible for the accident or my injuries?
Wisconsin law allows a driver to make a right turn on red at many intersections; however, a driver may still be liable for an accident that occurs after making a right turn on red. It all depends on whether the driver who made the right turn at a red light was negligent. In many cases, the answer is yes.
Understanding the Wisconsin Right on Red Law
The Wisconsin right turn on red law allows a driver to make a right turn at an intersection with a red light if the driver:
- Comes to a complete stop before entering the intersection
- Cautiously enters the intersection and turns into the nearest lane of traffic
- Yields not only to cars that have the green light, but also to pedestrians, bicyclists, and other vehicles
A driver may not make a right turn on red at an intersection on E Michigan Street in Milwaukee or elsewhere in Wisconsin if the intersection has signs that prohibit making right turns on red, if the driver would have to cross traffic lanes of moving traffic, or if it is unsafe to do so.
Is Another Driver Responsible for Your Injuries?
If another driver violated the Wisconsin right on red law or drove in a negligent manner that caused your injuries, you may be able to recover damages. To learn more, please read our FREE book, The Ultimate Guide for Automobile Accident Victims, and please contact us directly for a complimentary consultation.
The other driver involved in my recent accident called me today. Should I call him back?
In most cases, the answer to this question is no. You should not engage in direct conversations with the other driver who may have caused your accident on I-94, I-43, or another Milwaukee road.
It might seem like the easiest way to settle your accident case and move on with your life is to talk directly with the other driver involved in the crash. However, the other driver may not be in a position to settle your claim. If you have been seriously hurt, then it is unlikely that the other driver can afford to pay for your damages without the help of his or her insurance company. Yet, anything that you say to the other driver could later be used against you in settlement negotiations with the insurance company.
Accordingly, in most cases there is little, if anything, to gain from speaking directly with another driver involved in your accident. Yet there may be exceptions to that general rule. For example, if the other driver is a relative or friend, then you may have personal reasons for talking to the driver that are not directly related to the accident. In these cases, it is important to talk to a personal injury lawyer before talking to the other driver so that you can get advice about what you should—and should not—say.
For more tips on what to do after a car accident, please read our FREE book, The Ultimate Guide for Car Accident Victims, and please follow us on Facebook or Twitter.
How do I know if my 16-year-old is ready to drive on her own on a Wisconsin freeway?
As the parent of a 16-year-old, you have already faced difficult parenting decisions. However, that doesn’t make this particular decision any easier. Your child may be asking to drive somewhere that takes her on U.S. Route 41, but is she ready? She is looking to you for permission and you have to decide if she is ready to drive on the freeway.
It Isn’t a Simple Yes or No
We can’t give you a checklist and tell you that if your child gets a certain number of checks then she is ready to drive on US 41. It isn’t that easy. Instead, as a parent you are going to have to weigh everything that you know about:
- Your child’s personality.
- Your child’s preparation.
- Your child’s driving ability.
- Road and weather conditions.
- Other relevant factors.
You are going to have to trust yourself to make the right decision for your child, and you are going to have to be willing to say no if you have legitimate concerns about your child’s safety. The potential consequences of an accident on US 41 are too serious to risk if your child isn’t ready. Your child may be angry with you for telling her she can’t make the trip, but she will be alive to be with you another day.
For more information about teen driving safety, please read our related links provided on this page and please check our website regularly for additional updates.
I know that using a handheld cell phone while driving is dangerous, but why aren’t hands-free devices safe?
Does your car allow you to use voice commands to check your Twitter feed and send emails while driving? Many people believe that hands-free technology is a safe alternative to using a handheld phone or other device while driving, and the fact that many new cars come equipped with Bluetooth technology gives credibility to this myth.
However, multiple studies have found that drivers who are talking—regardless of whether they are holding a cell phone, using Bluetooth, or simply talking to a passenger—are not focusing in the road. Researchers at Carnegie Mellon University found that brain processing of visual images decreases by 37 percent when a person is listening to spoken language.
This is supported by a study that was conducted by scientists at the University of Utah and funded by the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety. Psychologist David Strayer led the study.
Strayer and his colleagues measured drivers’ eye motions, reaction times, and brain activity while the drivers were engaged in a variety of potentially distracting activities, including tuning the radio, listening to a book on tape, talking to a passenger, using a handheld cell phone, using a hands-free phone, and using voice command software to solve math and memory problems. Each driver was tested under three conditions:
- While using a computer
- While operating a driving simulator
- While operating a specially equipped 2010 Subaru Outback through a residential neighborhood
Listening to a book or to the radio was not very distracting. However, using voice recognition software to complete a simple task was more distracting than talking on a handheld phone. Solving problems using voice command software was the most distracting task of all.
Strayer, who has previously compared handsfree phone operation to driving drunk, said, “An unintended consequence of trying to make driving safer—by moving to speech-to-text, in-vehicle systems—may actually overload the driver and make them less safe.”
Drivers who use a handsfree device while driving are four times more likely to be involved in a crash. The best way to avoid Wisconsin distracted driving accidents is to focus on driving when you are behind the wheel. Give up multi-tasking, and try to make driving a pleasant experience. Turn on your favorite music and give your brain a break from your busy day.
April is distracted Driving Awareness Month. Help Hupy and Abraham educate Wisconsin drivers about the dangers of distracted driving. Request your free “DNT TXT N DRV” bumper sticker.
What can I expect if I need surgery for a ruptured spleen following a car accident?
Suffering from an internal injury due to an auto accident can be very painful and dangerous. One of the more severe of these internal injuries is a ruptured spleen. A ruptured spleen is an injury that occurs when a break is caused in the surface of the spleen.
The spleen is on the left side of the body just underneath the rib cage. The body uses the spleen to fight infection and filter old blood cells out of the bloodstream. Damage to the spleen can be life-threatening.
In some instances a ruptured spleen may be treated with a few days in the hospital. Severe instances require the victim to undergo surgery to fix the issue.
Three ways a ruptured spleen can be fixed with surgery are:
- Repairing the spleen. For minor cases of a ruptured spleen the doctor may attempt to repair the spleen. Although this is accomplished by simply suturing up the injured organ, this is still a risky and invasive surgical procedure.
- Removing a portion of the spleen. Depending on the rupture, it may be possible to remove just a portion of the spleen. The surgeon will perform a procedure known as a partial splenectomy.
- Full spleen removal. Although living without a spleen may increase the risk of serious infections, it may be necessary to have the spleen removed if it will not stop hemorrhaging. This procedure is known as a splenectomy. After a splenectomy, the patient will need to be cautious of infection.
Suffering from a spleen injury is an unpleasant experience. If you need surgery after a Wisconsin car crash that was someone else’s fault, you should not have to bear the costs of your medical care and recovery. If you have sustained an injury due to an auto accident you need to contact an experienced attorney right away by filling out the contact form on this page.
I know that a driver’s blood alcohol level does not have to be .08 in order for his ability to drive to be impaired. What is a safe blood alcohol level for drivers?
In Wisconsin and in the rest of the United States, it is illegal to drive with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of .08 percent or higher. But there is nothing magical about .08. A driver’s ability to operate a vehicle safely may be impaired by a much lower level of alcohol. Recent research shows that there may be no safe level of alcohol in the bloodstream when it comes to driving.
Researchers from the University of California at San Diego found that a BAC as low as .01 percent can increase accident risk by 46 percent. This means even drivers who are “just buzzed” are more likely to be at fault for a Wisconsin car crash.
The researchers used the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s (NHTSA) Fatality Analysis Reporting System (FARS) database to analyze 570,731 fatal collisions that occurred between 1994 and 2011. They looked for accidents in which there was a clear indicator of who was at fault for the crash. For example, driving through a red light or driving on the wrong side of the road would be an indicator of blame. They also obtained BAC measurements for each driver involved in a crash.
The researchers were surprised by their findings. Even at the lowest level, a BAC of .01 percent, drivers were 46 percent more likely to cause an accident than a sober driver. An average-sized man would have a BAC of .01 after drinking just half a beer. As BAC increased, so did the likelihood of causing a crash.
The National Transportation Safety Board has asked states to lower the legal BAC to 0.05 percent, the legal limit in many European countries. The authors of the study believe that the legal limits should be even lower. They urge anyone who has been drinking to avoid driving.
If you have been injured by an impaired driver, you have a right to compensation. Learn more about your rights in our book, The Ultimate Guide For Automobile Accident Victims. Call Hupy and Abraham at 800-800-5678 to request your free copy.
With the cold weather now upon us in Green Bay, do you have any tips on preparing myself in case I am involved in an auto accident?
Being involved in an accident is no fun, regardless of the time of year. However, being involved in an accident during the cold winter months in Green Bay can be miserable. Unfortunately, it does not end there, as the cold weather can also cause further injury and complications to those who are involved in the accident.
It is a good idea for anyone who is going to be driving in the cold weather to be well prepared. Being stranded and injured after an accident can is far from an ideal situation. The best way to be prepared is to insure that you always have the necessities covered before heading out.
Three ways a driver can be prepared for an accident during cold weather months are:
- Keep an emergency kit at hand. Being involved in an auto accident when it is extremely cold out can be dangerous even if the accident didn’t cause any injuries. An emergency kit should have at least a blanket, bandages, lighter, flashlight, water, and food.
- Get charged. Before heading out on the road make sure that you cell phone is charged. In the event of an accident you will need it to use it to call for help. It is also a good idea to keep a charger in the vehicle as well.
- Have warm clothes. Even if the drive is just around the corner to the grocery store, the driver and passengers should always have warm clothes. Bring jackets, boots, and gloves, as you never know what might happen.
If you have been involved in an accident this winter, we can help. Call 800-800-5678 for a free legal consultation.
I’m planning to a friend’s New Year’s Eve party. I know I’ll be drinking, but it’s a long drive home. Is there any way to get sober faster?
For many people, the traditional New Year’s toast comes after a full night of drinking and celebrating. A 160-pound man who has had two beers and a glass of celebratory champagne over a four-hour period will have a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of .075. This is very close to the legal limit of .08.
We all know that driving under the influence is dangerous. Unfortunately, there is no way to speed up sobriety. Neither coffee nor food nor a nap will help. No matter how much you drink, only time can get you sober.
The body metabolizes alcohol by breaking it down into acetic acid. Alcohol is metabolized at a rate of .015 percent of blood alcohol concentration per hour. This is true regardless of your gender, age, or physical health. Only eating will change the rate at which alcohol is metabolized—but a meal won’t sober you up. In fact, eating actually slows down the metabolism of alcohol because the food must also be metabolized. So, how long does it take to get sober?
BAC Time for all the alcohol to leave the body .06 4 hours .07 4 hours, 40 minutes .08 5 hours, 20 minutes .09 6 hours .10 6 hours, 40 minutes .11 7 hours, 20 minutes .12 8 hours .13 8 hours, 40 minutes .14 9 hours, 20 minutes .15 10 hours .16 10 hours, 40 minutes .17 11 hours, 20 minutes .18 12 hours .19 12 hours, 40 minutes .20 13 hours, 20 minutes
The only way to be ready to drive is to keep your BAC low. Here are some tips to help you stay sober:
- Don’t be pressured to drink.
- Avoid mixed drinks. Mixed drinks may contain large amounts of alcohol.
- Eat food with your drink. Food won’t help you become sober, but high protein foods like cheese, beans, or peanuts can slow the absorption of alcohol.
- Move around as you drink. The more you move, the less you will drink.
- Alternate alcoholic drinks and non-alcoholic drinks.
- Sip your drink slowly. This will allow your body to process the alcohol as you drink.
- Limit yourself to no more than one alcoholic drink per hour.
- If you take medications, talk to your doctor about whether the drugs will increase the effects of alcohol.
Friends make sure friends celebrate safely. The Madison DUI injury attorneys at Hupy and Abraham urge you to share these tips using Facebook or Twitter. You could save a friend’s life.
In order to prevent a Green Bay car accident, what are some of the adjustments I should make to my vehicle before hitting the road?
Car accidents in Green Bay are an all too frequent occurrence. As you drive through Green Bay, you may notice other vehicles that are smashed up on the side of the road. Because vehicle collisions are so common, it is very likely that you may be involved in an accident at some point during your driving career.
Driving can be difficult at times. It is important that you take the necessary steps to keep yourself and other safe on the road. A great way you can do this is to make the appropriate adjustments to your vehicle before you hit the road.
Four things you can do before driving a vehicle are:
- Adjust the seat. Adjust your driver seat to a position where all your controls are easy to reach. You should be able to fully press your brake, gas pedal, and clutch without having to stretch.
- Adjust the steering wheel. Nearly all vehicles are equipped with an adjustable steering wheel. Place the steering wheel in a position that allows your hands to be slightly lower then your shoulders while hands are rested at the classic “ten and two” clock positions.
- Position the mirrors. Adjust your driver and passenger mirrors so that you can see as much as the road as possible. You should only be able to see a small portion to the side of your vehicle. The rear view mirror should be adjusted to give you a clear view of the road behind you.
- Fasten your seat belt. When you put on your seat belt, it should be firmly against your chest. Adjust the height of the belt to slightly above your shoulder.
Taking just a few precautions can save your life as well as the life of others. Unfortunately, other drivers may not always take the same responsibility. If you have been injured by one of these drivers, you may be entitled to compensation.
To discuss your legal options, contact a Green Bay car accident attorney at Hupy and Abraham. Call us at 800-800-5678 for a free case evaluation.
What are the drugged driving laws in Wisconsin? Can someone be charged with drugged driving if he is taking a prescription drug?
In Wisconsin, drugged driving is considered a form of OWI or operating a vehicle while intoxicated. Wisconsin statute §346.63 prohibits drivers from operating a vehicle under the following conditions:
- A driver may not operate a vehicle while under the influence of an intoxicant, controlled substance, controlled substance analog, or any combination of these substances to a degree that makes him or her incapable of safe driving.
- A driver may not operate a vehicle with a detectable amount of a restricted controlled substance in his blood.
- A driver may not operate a vehicle with a blood alcohol level greater than .08
Since illegal drugs are—by their nature—against the law, the presence of an illegal drug in a driver’s body is enough for that driver to be charged with a Wisconsin OWI.
What if the driver has a prescription for the drug? Because many people abuse prescription drugs, it is possible to be charged with Wisconsin OWI while taking a prescription medication. A person is allowed to have these medications in his body as long as he has a legal prescription and the dose does not exceed the therapeutic level. If a driver’s blood concentration exceeds the therapeutic level for a medication, he will be considered impaired and may be charged with a Wisconsin OWI even if he has a legal prescription.
Some drugs are dangerous even at legal levels. Medications that have labels that say “May Cause Drowsiness” or “Do Not Operate Heavy Machinery” should not be taken by drivers. The driver may not be charged with drugged driving, but he can be held liable for any accidents that he causes while behind the wheel.
If you are injured by a drugged driver in Wisconsin, the law is on your side—but the insurance companies may not be. They may try to blame you for the accident even if the other driver was clearly at fault. Learn more about insurance company tactics in The Ultimate Guide For Automobile Accident Victims or call Hupy and Abraham at 800-800-5678 and ask to schedule a free consultation.