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Spokane Law Blog

Pulled over by the police? A new app can covertly record it

If you are pulled over by a police officer, you may want to record the interaction to document what happens and what is said. Many times, there is mis-communication between what the officer asks and the explanation that is given. Once this happens, how are you supposed to prove what was really said or how the conversation veered off course if there is not an audio or video recording?

If you want to record your traffic stop, technology is here for you. There is a new app for iPhone users that uses Siri to covertly make a recording of the stop. The app is designed to run a series of actions as well as record the stop. Once the recording has stopped, the app will automatically archive the footage. To use this app, you will need to download the add-on called "Police" that is part of the Shortcuts app that is now included with iOS 12.

Traffic accidents and PTSD

Traffic accidents have many consequences and destroy lives on a daily basis. Sometimes a crash results in a fatality, while other accidents may not claim any lives but do leave victims with permanent injuries that will never let them enjoy life in the same way again. Moreover, motor vehicle collisions can have other consequences which may be harder for other people to detect. The emotional toll of a wreck can be staggering, resulting in negative emotions such as high levels of anxiety, depression and anger. Moreover, some people may develop post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

When some people hear about PTSD, they immediately picture a veteran who is struggling with mental trauma following upsetting experiences during a war. However, people can develop PTSD for many other reasons, including motor vehicle wrecks. Someone may suffer from flashbacks or have so much mental trauma that they are not ever able to drive again. These accidents can disrupt a victim’s sleep schedule and affect their relationships with loved ones because of serious mental trauma.

The driving dangers of being a parent

If you think that cell phone use is the most distracting thing while driving, think again. Studies show that driving with kids in the car is much more distracting than using a phone, and if you are a parent in Washington this may come as no surprise. 

According to Medical Daily, driving with kids is 12 times riskier than talking on a mobile device. In fact, distractions related to children can take a parent's eyes off the road for an average of one-fifth the drive time on the road. Some of the common distractions include:

  • Glancing in the rearview mirror
  • Turning around to look in the back seat
  • Handing back food, a drink or a toy
  • Picking something the kid dropped or threw off the floor 
  • Fiddling with the radio or DVD player
  • Soothing a crying baby

How can accidents involving deer be avoided?

From distracted driving to accidents caused by the use of alcohol or illegal drugs, there are a plethora of reasons why motor vehicle crashes happen. There are many other risk factors to be aware of, some of which may be less common but equally concerning. For example, some parts of the country see an increase in the number of deer that are on the roads during the fall, and this can be especially concerning with respect to motor vehicle accidents. As a result, drivers should do what they can to avoid colliding with a deer.

According to the State of Michigan, almost 50,000 auto collisions with deer are reported each year in the state. Information published on their site states that it is especially important to be aware of deer while driving at dusk and dawn and that strategies such as flashing your headlights or honking your horn may not work as a deterrence. While driving, you should watch out for signs that indicate deer may be present and you should be aware that if you see one deer, it is very likely that more deer are nearby. Moreover, you should always be sober and alert while driving.

What is a Baby DUI?

Recently, a Washington State University football player was accused of Baby DUI. It appears he was under 21 years of age and driving in Pullman, Washington with a breath alcohol content of .076. He'll likely have to fight two separate cases: one against the criminal charge in the courtroom and another against the Washington State Department of Licensing to try to save his driver's license.

Drinking hot beverages while driving

For many people, coffee is part of a morning routine, an essential step in getting ready for the day ahead. Often, people who drink coffee and other hot beverages bring their drink behind the wheel, especially if they do not have a lot of time (such as those who have to get to work soon, for example). However, those who are short on time and trying to drive to work quickly may be more likely to spill their coffee. Worse, spilling a hot beverage while driving can result in serious burns and cause a motor vehicle crash which claims lives or causes debilitating injuries.

A driver who burns themselves may become immediately distracted, taking their eyes, hands and attention off of the road. A burn can be incredibly painful, and this extreme pain will definitely interfere with a person's ability to pay attention to the road. Sadly, diverting your attention from the road for just a couple of seconds can result in a tragic collision, and these distractions have claimed many lives. Even if you do not drink hot beverages while driving, you may become distracted behind the wheel by other types of drinks and food, and there are many other examples of distracted driving as well (phones, etc.).

Controlling your emotions after an uninsured driver hits you

When it comes to motor vehicle collisions, the consequences can be incredibly overwhelming, whether victims experience mental trauma, debilitating injuries or lose their lives. These challenges can be especially difficult for car crash victims in Spokane and across the state of Washington who have been struck by an uninsured driver. At Cooney Law Office, we recognize the multitude of challenges that victims of these collisions may have. In addition to the aforementioned consequences, people in this position may be under a great deal of pressure and they may have uncertainty over taking legal action to access the compensation they deserve.

It is important to maintain your composure to the best of your ability following a crash that was caused by an uninsured driver. If you find out that a driver who hit you was uninsured, you may become terrified, but it is important to take the right approach (contacting law enforcement, exchanging information with the driver who struck you, etc.). Moreover, you may find that it is necessary to file a lawsuit against the driver who caused the accident because they did not have insurance, in which case you should do all you can to prepare your case appropriately.

Labor Day DUI Patrols Announced

The Washington State Traffic Safety Commission has announced extra Driving Under the Influence (DUI) patrols starting in August and running through Labor Day Weekend (see link at the end of this post). This can be an especially dangerous time on the roadways around Spokane as many people are taking road trips over the long holiday weekend and before school starts in September. Anything that impairs or distracts a driver, like alcohol, drugs, cell phones or sleep deprivation, can have terrible consequences!

DUI Last Night. Can I Drive Today?

When a Driving Under the Influence (DUI) arrest occurs in Washington State the government does not immediately take away someone's driver's license. The key word is "immediately." Many people think they lose their license at the time they are arrested for a DUI. This is incorrect. There may be a suspension some time after the DUI arrest, but it is not immediate or even the next day.

Driving around dangerous turns

There are a number of hazards present on the road, from the recklessness of other drivers to poor weather conditions including snow and heavy rain. However, the very nature of certain parts of the road can be dangerous, from steep hills to sharp turns. There are many reasons why driving around a turn can be dangerous and in this post we will take a closer look at this facet of driving.

First of all, you may be unable to see another driver heading in the opposite direction while you approach and make your way around a turn. If they have crossed the center line slightly or are driving on the wrong side of the road entirely, you may collide with them in a head-on crash. Moreover, you may have very little time to react and avoid them.

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Cooney Law Offices P.S.
330 W. Indiana Ave.
Spokane, WA 99205

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