Posts tagged with "Boston MA"

Study: Distraction not limited to hand-held devices

Over the last several years, people in Norfolk County have become extremely attached to their technological devices and this has led to problems when it comes to driving. While the state has made efforts to lower distraction for drivers by banning texting while driving, drivers can still use their hand-held cell phones.

Distraction a growing problem

For the year 2008, the Executive Office of Public Safety and Security for Massachusetts reported that there were over 136,000 traffic accidents that occurred. Out of that number, 363 people died and more than 3,700 suffered serious injuries. It is unknown how many of those collisions were due to driver distraction but it is likely be quite a few.

According to, 10 percent of all car accidents were attributed to distracted drivers, resulting in the deaths of 3,331 people and injuries for 387,000 others. There are three forms of distraction: visual, manual and cognitive. While many studies have shown the risks associated with visual or manual distraction, there has been little information about cognitive until now.

Study focuses on cognitive distraction

A new study has been released by the American Automobile Association’s Foundation for Traffic Safety that measures cognitive distraction. It is deemed the “most comprehensive study of its kind” by USA Today and was an expanded study of one performed in Texas. In this new study, researchers at the University of Utah used 150 participants to determine the effects that different distractions have on the brain.

In order to measure cognitive distraction, the researchers first had to create a scale with a base to start with. They achieved this by first measuring the brain waves of participants who were completely focused on the task of driving. Then the participants were asked to engage in a singular additional task. These tasks were:

  • Talking with a passenger.
  • Using a hand-held cell phone.
  • Listening to an audio book.
  • Listening to a radio.
  • Using a text-to-message technology.
  • Talking with a hands-free phone.

Participants were outfitted with sensors, cameras and other recording devices that captured not only their brain waves but their physical actions. The tests were performed in three environments: lab, driving simulator and an instrumented vehicle. The drivers were given time to adjust to the environments to make sure that they were not distracted by the environments themselves.

Results of the study

The results of the study revealed that the more complicated the task was, the higher the level of cognitive distraction. This was especially true for the voice-to-text technology, showing that hands-free devices were just as distracting to drivers as hand-held cell phones. The data showed that drivers were slower to react to potential situations, missed important cues and visually scanned their driving environment less frequently.

It is estimated that infotainment systems, like the voice-to-text technology will greatly increase over the next several years. The technology and auto manufacturing industries claim, however, that the study was flawed in its methods and that hands-free technology is safer.

When someone is injured in a car accident because of a distracted driver, they could suffer serious injury and in some cases, permanent disability. Speaking with an experienced attorney can help them get the financial help that they need.

Avoid Nursing Home Negligence – Check out the nursing home over the holidays

Most people know about the trick of checking the batteries in smoke detectors when they set their clocks back. Well, how about a similar idea where you check the quality of care your loved ones in nursing home facilities and care centers are receiving each year when you see them for the holidays? To avoid nursing home negligence and abuse, it’s time to check in and monitor your loved ones care.

Nursing home negligence and abuse can happen over the holidays

Some people in nursing homes are medically capable of being picked up to spend time with their families on Thanksgiving, Christmas or any other holiday they celebrate. Other people need more help and their family gets to visit them inside their assisted living community.

Nursing Home Negligence & Abuse Lawyers, Boston Massachusetts


Nursing home care is important to monitor to avoid nursing home negligence, abuse or death

Whatever your family’s situation is, stop in and spend some time in your elderly loved one’s home. Pay attention and look around for little clues. Are there people placed in wheelchairs and left in a corner for a few hours? Does a call button go off for 15 minutes before someone answers it? Does something just seem off? Nursing home negligence can take many forms.

You might think the staff will put on their best behavior when they know families will come by, but that’s not always the case. Family members drop by nursing homes all the time so many staff members won’t see the point of concealing something that was already out in the open.

Holidays often mean a skeleton crew is working, and when the safety of your mother, father, aunt, uncle or other elder relative is at stake, don’t you want to know what things look like in the worst-case scenario? Emergencies can happen anytime.

Don’t forget to talk to your loved one about their own experiences. Does the staff respond to requests? Are they happy there? Are their needs being met? What do they think?

One evaluation will not be enough, however. The quality of a nursing home can fall over time, so make sure you check back from time to time. The quality of care of your loved one depends on it.

There are many types of nursing home abuse

When we put our loved ones in the care of a nursing home, we do so with the expectation that they will be given the utmost standard of care, and that their every need will be attended. Unfortunately, for one reason or another, this does not always happen. There are many things that can go wrong in a nursing home, and negligence at any stage can cause harm to the residents.

Obviously, the purpose of a nursing home is to provide residents with exceptional care, using a team of experienced, qualified staff members who are capable of providing this care using medical equipment and products designed to facilitate the care of the residents. However, any one of these facets of nursing home care could become an issue, which could affect the care that your loved one receives.

For example, if a nursing home is negligent in its hiring practices, then the staff members may not be able to provide adequate or necessary care to the residents. Being unable to administer an injection, for example, could cause your loved one to be injured or even killed depending on the circumstances. Additionally, negligence in properly maintaining equipment could cause a critical part of a patient’s care regimen to fail, leading to serious injury.

We all want what is best for our loved ones, which is why we place them in nursing homes in the first place. As we become unable to care for our loved ones, we entrust their well-being to others, but when they fail in their duty to provide adequate care, the consequences can become disastrous. If you live in Massachusetts, and your loved one has been injured while in the care of a nursing home, consider meeting with an attorney. You could be entitled to compensation.