Month: September 2013

Too many high school seniors engage in extreme binge drinking

In Georgia, the struggle against drunk driving continues every day. From education in schools, to Georgia State Patrol troopers using checkpoints and stopping suspected drunk drivers, a great deal is being done to reduce the number of traffic fatalities caused by drunk driving accidents. But the need remains great. Too many people are killed and too many suffer lifelong injuries that will inflict decades of pain and require lifetime medical care. So it is important to learn that binge drinking, the consumption of more than five drinks in a row, remains prevalent among high school students. Frighteningly, almost sixth percent of high schools seniors admit to incredible binge drinking of 15 drinks or more at a single time. One wonders how it is possible to avoid alcohol poisoning or death at this level, but this extreme binge drinking continues to occur and it is disturbing to find that it has…

Some Motorcycle Accidents Could be Caused by Miscalculation

Perceiving movement and calculating the time it takes for one object to strike another object is an inherently complex operation. Those who are very good at it can become successful baseball or tennis players. But we all have to do it. Whether driving on I-75 through Macon, or on winding Georgia state roads, every time you drive a car, your brain is making unconscious calculations when you change lanes, merge or make a turn. The brain uses the data received from your eyes and the size of the object on your retina to complete part of the calculation. However, it also uses "rules of thumb" such as the artist's depth cues that function as a shortcut in figuring outdistance. For motorcycle riders, this has a consequence that drivers may perceive them a further away, resulting in a motorcycle accident when they pull out in front of them. Research has found that…

Even a Dummy Should Wear Seat Belts

This week, the Governor's Office of Highway Safety (GOHS) tried to "make it real" in demonstrating the dangers of not wearing a seat belt, texting, and DUI to students in a Macon school. The GOHS use a real pick-up truck, equipped with dummies, to show what happens in a rollover car accident. During the simulation, the dummies in the pick-up truck are not wearing their seat belts, and they are ejected from the vehicle during the rollover crash. A frequent cause of death in car accidents is the ejection of the occupants from the vehicle. Upon ejection, a vehicle occupant typically strikes the ground or other objects at highway speeds. Even if they survive the ejection, they can receive additional severe or fatal injuries if they fall in the roadway and are struck by other vehicles. The director of GOHS commented that students are frequently found not complying with seat belt laws…

Warner Robins Car Crash Results in Vehicular Homicide Charge

Car accidents can range from trivial fender benders to catastrophic multi-vehicle accidents involving other cars or trucks that often result in severe injuries or fatalities. The cause of these car accidents is nearly infinite in terms of specifics, whether it is drunk driving after a few too many drinks at a bar, or distracted driving from attempting to read or reply to a text on a cellphone. A typical Georgia car accident is the result of negligence, or operating a vehicle in a manner below the standard with which we would expect a reasonable driver to operate their vehicle. In an extreme case of negligence, a 17-year-old in Warner Robins was charged with criminal vehicular homicide after a car accident in June left his passenger dead. Now, what makes a car accident a criminal offense? In this case, it appears to be due to the fact that the driver was "traveling too…

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