February is the heart of winter. Generally, it brings some of the coldest weather of the year to South Louisiana. In fact, 40 years ago the LSU lakes froze over for three days. Given the penchant for weather repetition in this state, we are due for another major days-long freeze.
No matter how slight or long the freeze is, drivers here cannot handle icy roads. No one knows the art of driving on snow and ice, vehicles have no traction, and the odds go way up that you could be involved in seemingly minor traffic accidents.
Nationwide, we are driving three million miles on just four million miles of roads, but traffic accidents are 20% lower than when we were driving on just 1 million miles of roads 50 years ago.
Here is a year-by-year tabulation of all accident fatalities from 1900 to 2007.
In Louisiana, we have been averaging about 775 deaths per year, and accidents with moderate severe injury totaling 12,500 annually. Statistically speaking, you are more likely to be in an accident in Louisiana and more likely to be injured to the point of requiring medical help. (LSU Highway Safety Research Group shared Louisiana traffic records data showing these figures and more.)
Unfortunately, the number of bicycle riders killed has increased to 23 in 2017. Nearly half of those deaths were because the bike rider had been drinking. (If you drink and bike, a ghost bike might be your legacy.) It is also important to note that 42 percent of the fatalities occurred between 6 pm and midnight.
College towns seem to have the most bike injuries, with 1550 in New Orleans, 560 in Metarie, 500 in Baton Rouge, 280 in Lafayette, and 225 in Lake Charles. It is really amazing more cyclists are not killed, considering the high numbers of accidents.
If you are involved in a traffic accident–no matter how insignificant you think it is–your best bet is to consult an experienced personal injury attorney.
A guiding hand can tell you what the probability is of obtaining recompense for your injuries. You don’t want to be stuck with paying medical bills for something that someone else caused.
With slippery weather this time of year, you will find yourself on solid ground with legal representation from Greg Gouner. He understands the ins and outs of personal injury lawsuits. Contact our offices today to schedule your private consultation.
Written by Ted Baldwin