2019 Prom Safety in Austin

  • May 1, 2019
  • Evans & Herlihy

The season is fast approaching. For many high school students, prom is the highlight of the school year — the gorgeous gowns and sleek tuxedos, elegant dinner, the ritual of the corsage and boutonniere, and, of course, the dance itself. As a parent, you may send off your son or daughter and marvel at just how grown-up they’ve become. But it’s important to remember that behind the makeup and fancy clothes, your child is still ... well, a child. Teenagers may look like they’re on the verge of adulthood, but their decision-making skills haven’t fully matured and they lack critical experience behind the wheel. It’s your responsibility to talk to your kid about staying safe on the road and to make it easy for them to get out o[...]

Pay Attention, Texas: Observing Distracted Driving Awareness Month

  • April 2, 2019
  • Evans & Herlihy

April is Distracted Driving Awareness Month As the Evans & Herlihy Law Firm and the National Safety Council observe Distracted Driving Awareness Month in April, help us by doing your part to keep Texas roads safe. Distracted driving is nothing new. People have been eating, touching up makeup, and fiddling with the radio dial while behind the wheel since long before cell phones became part of the equation. But as much as advancements in technology have improved our lives and ability to communicate, they haven’t done many favors for our driving. In addition to all of the old-school distractions, we now have dashboard touch-screens, GPS devices, and those ever-present smartphones to tempt our eyes away from the road. Don’t endanger[...]

Grim News for Texas Pedestrians

  • March 20, 2019
  • Evans & Herlihy

Things are bad on Texas roads. In fact, we’re nearing the top of the list of states with the most pedestrian deaths. Our state’s increase in pedestrian fatalities is part of a bigger trend. In other words, the pedestrian safety problem is bad everywhere, but it’s particularly scary in Texas. Just how bad is it? During the first six months of 2018, the number of pedestrian deaths in the Lone Star State increased by 32 percent from the year before, bringing the total number of pedestrian fatalities during the front end of 2018 to 298. Only Georgia saw an increase that big from 2017 to 2018. This is a National Trend, Too An increase in pedestrian deaths isn’t unique to Texas. Nationally, there’s been a 35 percent increase in pe[...]

How Dangerous are Electric Scooters? Austin Will Help the US Find Out.

  • January 9, 2019
  • Evans & Herlihy

Electric vehicles in all shapes and sizes are becoming more common in Texas. Governments are trying to decide how to regulate them just as users are trying to learn out how to safely use them. Electric cars, trucks, motorcycles, bicycles and scooters are entering the market. As this new technology improves, you may find that getting around was never easier. But was it safer? The injuries and accidents involving electric scooters in Austin from last September through November will be studied by the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), reports USA Today. These scooters, narrow, two-wheeled vehicles with a handlebar for steering, first became popular when they were powered the old-fashioned way, by pushes by the ride[...]

4 Ways to Stay Safe in Austin on New Year’s Eve

  • December 29, 2018
  • Evans & Herlihy

As 2018 winds down and you begin looking forward to 2019, remember: The best way to get the new year off to a good start is to stay safe on New Year’s Eve. Some common sense, planning ahead, and situational awareness will help ensure a smooth and festive transition from Dec. 31 to Jan. 1. These four tips are a good place to start. Have a house party where you control the environment. Sometimes it makes sense to avoid strange places and unfamiliar situations—and if you want to celebrate but stay in a safe environment, what could fit the bill better than your own home? If you host festivities at your place, you get to stay in control of all the elements of the evening: the guest list, the atmosphere, and what (and how much) peo[...]

CMV Inspections Reveal Hours-Of-Service Struggles in Trucking

  • November 26, 2018
  • Evans & Herlihy

A fatigued driver is an unsafe driver. That’s the rationale behind the Hours of Service (HOS) rules that apply to the trucking industry. These rules, set in place by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Association (a division of the federal Department of Transportation), dictate how many consecutive hours a driver is allowed to drive his vehicle, as well as how long and how frequent his breaks must be. The goal, stated by the FMCSA, is “to keep fatigued drivers off the public roadways” and make sure that drivers stay awake and alert while driving. However, Hours of Service violations continue to be common among commercial truck drivers, and some in the industry are pushing for change. "Today's truckers have never faced more reg[...]

What Every Limousine Renter in Texas Should Know

  • November 12, 2018
  • Evans & Herlihy

The limousine that crashed in New York state in early October, killing 20 people, should not even have been on the road. New York Governor Andrew Cuomo stated days after the Oct. 6 accident that the vehicle had failed its latest safety inspection—and the driver did not even have the proper license. The limousine itself was what some have called a “Frankenstein vehicle”—basically an SUV that has been cut in half and stretched out. "When we look at limousines and stretch limos, we see a really Frankenstein system of cars that potentially are cut up and put back together with parts and pieces that were not original to them," Deborah Hersman, president, and CEO of the nonprofit National Safety Council and former chair of the Nati[...]

Are Lenient Traffic Laws Making Texas More Dangerous?

  • August 27, 2018
  • Evans & Herlihy

It may not be much comfort if you're the one getting a traffic ticket, but drivers in the Lone Star State may actually be getting off easy compared to other parts of the country. But does lax enforcement of traffic laws make a state less safe? A recent report from personal finance site Wallet Hub puts Texas at the bottom of the list of "Strictest States on Speeding and Reckless Driving." The state ranked 51st overall in a study that collected data from all 50 U.S. states as well as Washington D.C. The study assigned points to states based on several metrics related to speeding and reckless driving; the points were totaled to arrive at the overall strictness rank. Among the factors that kept Texas in last place are: Speeding is not[...]

Big Risks for Big Rigs: Why Are Fatal Large Truck Crashes Increasing?

  • August 20, 2018
  • Evans & Herlihy

Every day, tractor-trailers share the roads with cars, pickups, and SUVs. But what some tractor-trailers don't share is the advanced safety technology that helps the passenger vehicles stay accident-free. According to Consumer Reports, research shows that safety features currently available in passenger cars, such as a forward collision warning (FCW) and automatic emergency braking (AEB), are reducing crashes as they become more available. Now, experts are wondering if those features could help curb a disturbing trend: the increase in deaths in crashes involving large trucks. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 37,461 people died on the road in 2016, the last year for which statistics are available – a[...]

This Mobile App Could Test Driver Impairment

  • June 12, 2018
  • Evans & Herlihy

When the police ask you to take a Breathalyzer test, it's usually already too late. The damage -- sometimes property damage, sometimes injury or loss of life -- has already been done. But what if there were a way you could tell if you were impaired before you got behind the wheel? Well, there’s an app for that. DRUID is one of a recent (and ever-growing) crop of phone-based applications that allow drivers to measure their level of impairment before they turn the key. How It Works DRUID, which was specifically formulated to measure impairment from marijuana, asks users to complete a series of cognitive and physical tasks while sober to establish a baseline performance score. Reaction time, decision making, hand-eye coordination, bala[...]