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The Most Dangerous Day of the Week

/ Personal Injury /

The Most Dangerous Day of the WeekNEW YORK – All kinds of accidents happen every day – from car crashes to slip and fall injuries, the world can be a dangerous place. But have you ever wondered what day is the most dangerous day of the week? Someone at LiveScience figured it out.

Using data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, writers at the science news source determined there were nearly 40 million recorded deaths between 1999 and 2014. They said the breakdown was ‘fairly equivocal’ at first glance but it was much different when they broke down the data into different categories.

A Manhattan personal injury attorney at Cellino & Barnes says preventable deaths like accidents skyrocket on the weekends.

“Many drivers for example, can be more reckless on Saturdays and Sundays in Manhattan,” personal injury lawyer Ross Cellino said. “It’s no secret that bars are busier on the weekends and some will choose to drive when they’re intoxicated. This behavior puts everyone at risk.”

Accident-related incidents like car crashes spiked on Saturdays, according the LiveScience’s research. Since 1999, more than 42,000 people have been killed in car accidents on Saturdays and another 40,000 deaths happened on Sundays.

“Almost every type of accident spikes over the weekend,” Cellino said. “People are simply out of the house and the office more.”

From firearm deaths to ‘venomous plant or animal” accidents, Manhattan personal injury lawyers say Saturdays are consistently more dangerous than most other days of the week with one exception:

LiveScience said more than 685,000 heart attacks occurred on the first two work days each week. According to the CDC, nearly 350,000 heart attacks happened on Mondays over the last 15 years.

Watch ‘Autopilot’ Car Prevent A Crash

/ Car Accident, Personal Injury /

BUFFALO, N.Y. – The future of vehicle safety is already on display. Fully autonomous vehicles are on test roads but you’ll see some cars, fit with an array of sensors and cameras, are already making an impact on real-world roads.

Recently, one driver uploaded a video showcasing how this relatively new technology can prevent an accident. The video, which was recorded in April 2016, shows a Tesla Model S automatically swerving to avoid a merging truck.

A Buffalo car accident lawyer at Cellino & Barnes says although the video shows promising improvements in road safety, it also shows the need for drivers to stay sharp behind the wheel.

“Merging vehicles are often very dangerous and it’s important for drivers to remain aware of their surroundings while maneuvering in traffic in a city like Buffalo,” car accident lawyer Steve Barnes said. “Although some cars can now automatically move out of the way, the entire incident could have been avoided.”

Clearly, the driver of the Model S depicted in the video was grateful the car suddenly changed its direction. The video’s description reads:

“Tesla Model S autopilot saved the car autonomously from a side collision from a boom lift truck. I was driving down the interstate and you can see the boom lift truck in question on the left side of the screen on a joining interstate road. Once the roads merged, the truck tried to get to the exit ramp on the right and never saw my Tesla. I actually wasn’t watching that direction and Tessy (the name of my car) was on duty with autopilot engaged. I became aware of the danger when Tessy alerted me with the “immediately take over” warning chime and the car swerving to the right to avoid the side collision.

You can see where I took over when there’s a little bit of blip in the steering. Tessy had already moved to the right to avoid the collision. I was not able to slow down even more due to the heavy traffic (cars were behind me). Once I got behind him I slowly added more room between us until he exited. I was not tail gating after the incident.

It was a mistake on the other driver’s part. He did not even know I was there until I honked my horn. There was a group of women in the black sedan to my left and they went nuts about the guy and what he did (all kinds of gesturing in their car). Once I was beside the truck as it slowed down on the ramp, the guy gestured a “sorry!” I gave him, “it’s okay” wave.

Tessy did great. I have done a lot of testing with the sensors in the car and the software capabilities. I have always been impressed with the car, but I had not tested the car’s side collision avoidance. I am VERY impressed. Excellent job Elon!”

Although it’s not fully autonomous, Tesla’s Autopilot feature allows the vehicle to steer itself in emergencies and warn the driver of a pending side collision. In practice, the system has successfully shown that it can automatically adjust to avoid a crash.

Many safety advocates welcome the safety improvements but warn about the dangers of relying on them.

“It’s encouraging to see that companies are using technology to help prevent accidents.” Barnes said. “But electronic systems can fail so it’s always going to be important to have a deep understanding of how operate a vehicle.”

Tesla’s crash avoidance features were also recorded in action in November when a semi-truck was close to colliding with a different Model S.

Buffalo car accident attorneys say the features are a promising glimpse into the future of vehicle safety but there is no substitute for a safe driver.

How Astronomy Causes Crashes

/ Car Accident, Personal Injury /

How Astronomy Causes CrashesBUFFALO, N.Y. – This time of year can be dangerous for anyone who uses the road. Pedestrians, bicyclists and drivers are at all at risk because of the sun.

During the spring and fall, the sun can cause what’s called “sun blindness,” or sun glare – and it can be incredibly dangerous for those who behind the wheel.

A Buffalo car accident attorney at Cellino and Barnes says this condition spikes because of an astronomical event that only occurs twice in a year.

“Drivers are most at risk of sun glare during the fall and spring because that’s when the sun directly rises in the east and sets to the west of Buffalo,” car accident lawyer Steve Barnes said. “Sunrise and sunset times also coincide with rush hour times and that can make the roads a dangerous place.”

Making matters worse, most cities are constructed on what’s called a “grid.” This means the roads, for the most part, run east to west and north to south.

According to one British study, sun glare causes roughly 3,000 accidents each year – and due to the fact that the U.S. boasts more drivers, the number of accidents could be much greater in America.

The bright sunlight could be affecting drivers differently depending on their age, a recent federal study suggested. Older drivers were found to be more likely to cause a crash if their vision was obstructed by a glare. The study also notes that other bright objects, like billboards and headlights, can also cause vision impairments for the elderly.

According to statistics from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 38.5 percent of the drivers who reported a glare-related crash were over the age of 45.

“Glare can be a difficult problem to address – especially on bright spring days but there are many steps drivers can take to prevent an accident,” Barnes said. “So, while a glare can be a factor; it’s not an excuse and drivers need to take responsibility for their actions if someone gets injured in a crash.”

Buffalo car accident lawyers suggest putting sunglasses in your vehicle, just in case. Many sunglasses can minimize sun glare – and most cars have a convenient compartment to hold your shades.

A clean windshield can also improve a driver’s ability to see through a glare, Barnes said. Dirt and grime can sometimes refract and reflect light but keeping a clean windshield can minimize the stress on your eyes.

Safety advocates also suggest considering alternate routes during your morning and evening commutes. Using north-and-south roads should allow you to avoid sun glare – or you can do a little research and plan your commute well before or after sunrise and sunset.

Finally, attorneys say if you are getting blinded by the light, slow down. Speed is also a factor in many glare-related accidents. Slowing down could save a life.

Txt me L8r

/ Car Accident, Personal Injury /

Txt me L8rGARDEN CITY, N.Y. – You may have been in this awkward position before: you’re driving. Your phone rings from your pocket or your purse on the passenger seat. Did you answer it? Be honest.

Many drivers choose to take that call or text and too often, it causes a crash.

In fact, some studies say you’re 23-times more likely to cause a crash if you’re texting behind the wheel.

Both doctors and lawyers have seen their share of distracted drivers. Unfortunately, it’s usually after the fact. A Long Island car accident lawyer at Cellino & Barnes says victims of distracted drivers often go through emergency rooms.

“We’ve seen how heartbreaking and devastating car crashes can be – and most of those crashes are caused by a distracted driver in Long Island,” car accident lawyer Ross Cellino said. “Distractions are now the leading cause of all personal injury collisions.”

According to a National Highway Traffic Safety Administration study, about 660,000 drivers are using hand-held cellphones or another electronic device right now, at this moment.

Researchers say distracted driving is comparable to being drunk. Studies have shown that texting and driving is roughly the same as having a blood-alcohol level of 0.19, which is twice the legal limit in New York.

With all this new information coming to light, police are ramping up enforcement.

Recently, law enforcement agencies have begun a “crackdown” on distracted driving in New York and other states. The Washington State Patrol reported officers pulled over more than 18,000 drivers last year for talking on a hand-held cellular device. Another 4,000 drivers were ticketed for texting – but police believe that’s just a small fraction.

“This is huge problem,” Cellino said. “Even if you’re a safe and responsible driver, your life can be at risk because another driver isn’t paying attention.”

If you’ve been injured because of a negligent or distracted driver, the Long Island car accident lawyers at Cellino & Barnes have experience achieving justice and they can help you and your family get the best result possible from a claim.

Contact a Long Island car accident attorney today for a free consultation.

6 Dangers of Spring Break

/ Personal Injury /

6 Dangers of Spring BreakBUFFALO, N.Y. – If you’re stressed or exhausted, a vacation might be just what the doctor ordered. Many health professionals believe some R & R can be healthy and re-energizing. However a spring break trip also poses some unfamiliar dangers for travelers.

According to real science backed by doctors and university professors, skipping the holidays can be deadly. But Dengue fever and venomous snakes can be just as dangerous. That’s why doctors and safety advocates suggest doing your homework before booking a flight.

A Buffalo personal injury attorney at Cellino & Barnes says spring break injuries are actually common: from slip and fall injuries, to car accidents and binge drinking; your vacation can be dangerous if you’re not prepared.

“When you’re on vacation, you’re likely in an unfamiliar area and that can raise your risk of having an accident,” Buffalo personal injury attorney Steve Barnes said. “We strongly urge anyone who is traveling to carefully plan their vacations and learn about the areas they’ll be visiting.”

Here are six of the most common dangers travelers encounter while on spring break:

6. Lack of Emergency Treatment/Services

If you’re on spring break, there’s no doubt you may want to try new things and explore new places. Unfortunately, as Buffalo personal injury attorneys pointed out, new places can be risky. Depending on your destination, emergency services may be few and far between.

In 2012, a man died of food poisoning because there weren’t any doctors or health services nearby that could treat his condition.

According to a recent travel risk analysis, some nations were found to have little to no modern medical facilities that could help travelers, if needed.

5. Norovirus on Cruises

Norovirus is an extremely contagious illness. A person can get infected from food, water, contaminated surfaces, or even another person. Sparing you the graphic details, norovirus can cause severe stomach pain and nausea.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, norovirus contributes to over 56,000 hospitalizations and around 600 deaths each year.

Cruises can increase your risk of being infected with norovirus because it thrives in small, confined areas. The CDC has reported several recent outbreaks on cruises and in some cases, cruise ships have been investigated by the CDC’s Vessel Sanitation Program.

4. Animal/Bug Bites

Snakes. Spiders. And bees, oh my! Some vacation hotspots have their shares of venomous and dangerous wildlife. Some critters can cause allergic reactions which can sometimes be fatal.

Even those at home should be on alert for dangerous species. In 2014, a British family was evacuated when they found hundreds of deadly spiders hiding out in bananas.

Obviously, the risk is greater if you’re visiting that creature’s home territory. According to the World Health Organization, more than 400,000 people are permanently disabled or disfigured due to wild animal bites each year.

3. Food Poisoning

Plan on trying new foods in exotic places? Buffalo personal injury attorneys are urging travelers to be cautious of what they eat because food poisoning can happen to anyone, anywhere.

“Nearly every day, we hear of new cases of food poisoning or e. coli breakouts at restaurants locally and abroad,” Barnes said. “Every establishment in America has standards to adhere to and they can be found legally responsible for your illness but when you’re traveling abroad, those standards could be different.”

The CDC estimates 48 million Americans get sick from bad food each year. According to CDC statistics, another 3,000 people die from foodborne diseases.

Water is the most common source of food poisoning; followed by beef, poultry, leafy greens, eggs, and tuna.

2. Irregular sleep patterns

You’ve heard of jetlag but most Americans don’t consider how it affects your health.

According to the Palo Alto Medical Foundation, jetlag can cause impaired brain functions including forgetfulness and decreased alertness. Most commonly however, jetlag is known to contribute to drowsiness, which can be extremely dangerous when operating heavy machinery or a motor vehicle.

1. Binge Drinking

The most common accidents that occur on spring break involve alcohol. Each year, thousands of college students take a break from the books and open the booze. Unfortunately, binge drinking can be dangerous and deadly in several ways.

Not only does binge drinking increase your risk of car accidents and slip and fall accidents; drinkers can fall victim to alcohol poisoning.

Buffalo personal injury attorneys urge everyone on spring break to use their best judgements and know your limits.

Storming the Civil Court

/ Personal Injury /

Storming the Civil CourtNEW YORK – It’s March and for millions of Americans, that means March Madness. More than 60 of the nation’s top basketball squads will tip-off starting March 15 and if this year’s tournament is anything like the tournaments of the past, you can expect some upsets… and some hoops fans will seize that opportunity to storm the court.

It makes entertaining TV but storming the court can be dangerous and a New York personal injury attorney at Cellino & Barnes is urging schools and arenas to take action before someone gets injured.

“Putting yourself in the middle of a stampede is rarely a good idea,” New York personal injury lawyer Steve Barnes said. “It’s a terrible accident waiting to happen.”

Recently, Arizona Coach Sean Miller sounded-off about the issue after fans in Colorado stormed the court when Miller’s 9th-ranked Wildcats lost in an upset.

“Eventually what’s going to happen in the PAC-12 is this: an Arizona player is going to punch a fan,” Miller said. “When it happens, will everybody say we have to do something?”

It’s possible that someday a college athlete – taunted, attacked and jostled in a stampede – could injure a spectator. Whether it’s done on purpose or by accident, it hardly matters at this point. Miller simply foresees a lawsuit.

Although no one stormed the court, athletes have attacked spectators before. In 2004, NBA star Ron Artest and two of his teammates were suspended after an on-court brawl spilled into the stands. According to ESPN, one fan threw a Diet Coke at Artest, which sparked an all-out brawl. Several players and fans were later convicted of misdemeanor assault, including Artest.

Several fans filed lawsuits just days after the incident.

New York personal injury attorneys at Cellino & Barnes fear that a similar fight could breakout when crowds storm the courts.

“It’s a very emotional game and for many people – both players and fans – keeping those emotions in-check can be difficult,” Barnes said. “Although it’s often frowned upon to storm the court, it still happens and schools may not be doing enough to prevent it.”

Fans have stormed courts countless times throughout the history of college basketball but few of those fans ever face the threat of a fine. Barnes says some schools and athletic facilities may consider introducing fines or raising the penalties for those who storm the court.

Many of those who follow the sport agree that more actions need to be taken to prevent fans from entering the playing court in stampede-fashion. Not only could it prevent an unnecessary injury; it could also prevent a lawsuit.

How One Accident Changed So Many Lives

/ Personal Injury /

How One Accident Changed So Many LivesNEW YORK – If you have ever been in a fender-bender, it can be frustrating. Hopefully, it’s minor and you walk away without any injuries but sometimes accidents can be devastating. Any time a person is injured in an accident, it can put a strain on your health, your job, your relationships, and your finances.

Just one accident can change your life.

This week, Americans honored the lives of seven people who were killed in one of the nation’s most horrific accidents. They were engineers, physicists, service members, pilots, and teachers aboard the Space Shuttle Challenger.

A New York personal injury attorney at Cellino & Barnes says this one tragic event affected so many American lives.

“This one accident took loved ones away from their families and robbed school children of their teacher,” New York personal injury attorney Ross Cellino said. “Whether it’s a space shuttle or a car crash, it’s heartbreaking to think about how many people can be impacted by just one accident.”

The space shuttle’s external fuel tank collapsed, causing the shuttle to break apart just 73 seconds into its flight. A major investigation tasked with finding the cause of the accident discovered that a fault seal on one of the rocket boosters didn’t function correctly.

Federal investigators say the accident could have been prevented: it was a design flaw.

Engineers originally recommended postponing Challenger’s launch date because the “O-ring” seals had not been tested in low temperatures. Mission managers had only slept for two hours before they rejected the engineers’ recommendation.

The official accident report was issued later in 1986 and had determined that “time pressure… increased the potential for sleep loss and judgment errors,” and working “excessive hours, while admirable, raises serious questions when it jeopardizes job performance, particularly when critical management decisions are at stake.”

Families of the Challenger crew members received settlements 11 months after the crash. More than half of the settlement payments were made by the manufacturer responsible for the space shuttle’s rocket boosters.

“Legal action can provide security for accident victims and their families,” Cellino said. “It can also promote positive changes and improve safety for future generations.”

The accident was no doubt a tragedy and it completely changed America’s space program.

After Challenger, NASA completed a total redesign of the space shuttle’s rocket boosters. The space agency also created the Office of Safety, Reliability and Quality Assurance, which continues to be responsible for safety analysis and assessments of space technology.

Beyond these changes, the Challenger had a larger impact on America: although its crew never completed its educational mission, heartbroken families and friends have continued it by establishing and supporting the Challenger Center, a non-profit educational organization that aims to teach children the importance of science, technology, engineering, and math.

One accident continues to have a profound impact on many lives.

Today, there are more than 40 Challenger education centers around the nation encouraging millions of children to reach for the stars.

Ski, Snowboard Injuries Extremely Expensive

/ Personal Injury /

Ski, Snowboard Injuries Extremely ExpensiveROCHESTER, N.Y. – Do you have plans to go skiing or snowboarding this winter? If so, sprinkle some safety on top; it could save you a lot of pain, suffering and money.

According to a study out of the Rochester Institute of Technology, up to 3 out of every 1,000 ski visits will result in an injury.

Snowboarding is even more dangerous. Researchers estimate six out of every 1,000 snowboarders will end up in the hospital.

Rochester personal injury attorneys at Cellino & Barnes say ski and snowboard injuries are often very serious and few families are prepared for such a sudden and large medical bill.

“The slopes can be dangerous and filled with unexpected hazards and if the proper safety precautions are ignored, families can be dealing with a devastating and expensive injury,” Rochester personal injury attorney Ross Cellino said. “In many cases, injuries can be very similar to the injuries people suffer in car accidents like broken bones, torn ligaments, spinal injuries, or head trauma.”

Academic studies on ski and snowboard accidents are rare – but doctors estimated the total cost of these accidents to be over $22,000 in 1996. That’s roughly equivalent $33,500 today.

Doctors say the most common skiing injuries affect the knees and they often require reconstructive surgery.

Snowboarders are more likely to suffer wrist sprains and fractures because of the manner in which they fall.

“These injuries sometimes happen because those who maintain the slopes failed to clear hazards or make the slopes safe for skiiers and snowboarders,” Cellino said. “But we also see those who are less experienced attempt to navigate a difficult slope.”

Doctors and attorneys off the following recommendations to avoid a ski or snowboard accident:

  • Warm-up. Properly stretching and exercising every day can improve posture and endurance, preventing falls.
  • Don’t overdo it. If you start to feel fatigued, take a rest. When your muscles are worn out, they’re more susceptible to injury.
  • Take the bunny hill. Especially for those who are new to skiing, the more difficult terrains can pose a number of dangers. If you’re not an expert, avoid the expert slope – they sometimes have unmarked obstacles.
  • Wear the right safety equipment. Properly selecting a ski size and getting fitted for a helmet is extremely important. Make sure you’re always wearing protective equipment – even when you’re stopped. Another skier could run into you at any time.

Also, know the statistics. Most injuries are caused by falls and collisions. Be aware of your surroundings on the slopes and become familiar with the terrain.

If you have any doubts about your skill level, don’t try the downhill slalom course. Rochester personal injury attorneys say it’s better to enjoy a day on the slopes than a day in the hospital.

A Helmet? While Sledding? Docs Say ‘Use Your Head’

/ Personal Injury /

A Helmet? While Sledding?ROCHESTER, N.Y. – Now that you have fresh snow, you’ll want to take the kids out the hill for a fun day of sledding but doctors are urging both parents and children to do something relatively unheard of in the sledding community: Wear a helmet.

Doctors with St. Luke’s University Health Network in Pennsylvania say it’s common sense to wear a helmet while you’re on a bike or a motorcycle and the same practice should be applied to sledding.

The medical pros have the statistics to back-up their suggestion too: more than 229,000 sledding injuries sent children to the hospital over ten years. Additionally, a 2007 study found that children can reach an average speed of 19 miles per hour on a downhill sled – and many times, sleds can go much faster.

A Rochester personal injury attorney at Cellino & Barnes says a helmet could avoid a potentially deadly injury and children should always be supervised.

“Sledding is a fun outdoor activity for thousands of children but every year, there’s an accident,” Rochester personal injury lawyer Ross Cellino said. “It is our hope that these accidents can be minimized and families can help reduce the number of sledding injuries with adult supervision and safety equipment like helmets.”

According to doctors at St. Luke’s, 34 percent of all sledding accidents resulted in a head injury. Up to 10 percent of the children who suffered a head injury became permanently disabled.

Recently, a 15 year-old Michigan boy was killed after his sled, being pulled by an SUV, crashed into a tree. Prosecutors said those involved in the stunt could face charges.

“Some communities have banned sledding because, in the end, the cities, counties and towns can be held responsible,” Cellino said. “However, most accidents can be minimized or prevented with good property maintenance, signage and supervision.”

Doctors and attorneys recommend several tips parents can follow to reduce the number of sledding injuries:

  1. Use a safe sled. Tubes and toboggans can be very risky because they accelerate to high speed with going downhill.
  2. Sit Feet-Forward. Avoid going downhill head-first – it increases the chance of serious head injury.
  3. Clear a Path. Avoid hills with obstructions or obstacles such as trees, jumps or ramps. Also find a hill with soft snow and avoid ice at all costs – since it is harder, the risk of injury is greater.
  4. Supervise. Most importantly, pay attention and make sure your kids are sledding sensibly.

Doctors say helmets are also an important tool for children under 12.

Boredom May Be a Symptom of a Brain Injury

/ Personal Injury /

Symptom of a Brain InjuryNEW YORK – Boredom can be a lonely state of mind and when you’re bored, you may think of it as a solvable problem but some researchers believe it’s a symptom of something much more severe.

According to Nature, an international weekly science journal, a Canadian researcher discovered that young men who suffered a traumatic brain injury get bored easier than they did before their head trauma. The findings have launched new cognitive research and doctors are now looking deeper into the state of boredom.

A Long Island personal injury attorney at Cellino & Barnes says in any type of accident, traumatic brain injuries are extremely common and thousands of Americans may have suffered a head injury without ever noticing.

“Many times, a person walks away from a car accident and doesn’t notice anything wrong with their behaviors,” Long Island personal injury attorney Ross Cellino said. “But over the next year or two, their attitudes may change, their personality can change and it can be devastating to their family.”

Brain injuries do not heal like other injuries and symptoms could appear at any time after the injury occurs – even weeks later.

The changes are rarely sudden. Instead, they occur slowly over time and it can make diagnosing a brain injury difficult for doctors.

However, if research determines boredom is a consistent symptom of a brain injury, doctors may be able to diagnose the patient sooner.

“Although traumatic brain injuries are extremely complex and radically different than most other types of injuries, it’s important to get treated quickly,” Cellino said. “As with any injury, a complete recovery starts with seeing a doctor.”

Some physicians believe that boredom can lead to other serious and unhealthy complications.

Binge-eating, for example, is often triggered by boredom, according to a study of eating disorders.

Other studies took boredom to the road and found that bored drivers often drive at higher speeds and don’t react as quickly as other drivers – and they frequently drifted into oncoming lanes. And a survey found that teens were more likely to pick up smoking, drinking, or drugs if they said they were bored.

However, research is only beginning to understand the link between boredom and traumatic brain injuries, if there is a link.

Currently, research on boredom and traumatic brain injuries are sparse but many medical experts are fascinated by the discussion and are planning to investigate boredom on more than just college students – that suggests new studies on boredom in teens, the elderly, and people with various ethnic backgrounds.

Client Thanks

I would like to thank your firm for representing our family on behalf of my late husband. This whole process was, at times, difficult for us and sometimes painful. But, we were always in good hands as Brian and Maria are two of the hardest working and sincerest people I have ever had the pleasure of meeting. They did a tremendous job.

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