Columbia ranks in top 10 most accident-prone cities

In a new study conducted by QuoteWizard, Columbia has been ranked among cities with the highest rate of car crashes.

This is a fact that our firm already knew to be true. In 2017,more than 40,000 people nationwide died in car crashes. And that number is on the rise, with a six percent increase in traffic deaths since 2015. No matter what part of the country you live in, being on the road is always a risk. But driving is apparently more dangerous in some places than others. QuoteWizard analyzed self-reported driving infractions data from site users, which includes accidents. These rankings account for more than one million data points on accidents from 2017.

Cities ranked ‘most accident-prone’ have the highest rate of accidents per driver. “Car crashes are, sadly, all too common across the country. But crash rates vary quite a bit from city to city. Whether it’s distracted driving, lousy roads, bad drivers, or a combination of all three, drivers in some cities seem to crash more often than others,” says Adam Johnson, QuoteWizard content manager. “QuoteWizard analyzed over a million datapoints on drivers in America to find out where people are getting into accidents at the highest rates.”

From the most accidents to the least, these are the 25 most car accident-prone cities in the US:

  1. Columbus, OH
  2. St. Louis, MO
  3. Los Angeles, CA
  4. Sacramento, CA
  5. New Orleans, LA
  6. Charlotte, SC
  7. Columbia, SC
  8. Washington DC
  9. Baltimore, MD
  10. Greenville, SC

The study reveals that Charlotte, NC, Columbia, SC, and Greenville, SC all rank in the top 10 most car accident prone cities in the country. If you or a loved one has been injured in a car collision, please contact our firm immediately. We have the ability to ensure that you receive all the compensation that you are entitled under the law. We hold reckless drivers, and their insurance companies accountable. For a free consultation, call us today at (803) 350-9230.


South Carolina Workers Comp – Frequently Asked Questions

Here is a list of the frequently asked questions about workers’ compensation laws that we receive from people who have been injured on the at work.

  • How do I report an on-the-job injury?

    Report all injures at work to your employer immediately and request medical treatment, if needed. If you neglect to report the injury within 90 days of the accident you may lose your benefits. However, it is very important that the injury be reported as quickly as possible so that the employer does not claim that the injury did not occur. Although you must report the injury within 90 days, you have up to two years to file a claim for benefits. If a worker dies because of work-related injuries, the workers’ dependents, or parents if there are no dependents, must file a claim within two years of the death to claim benefits.

  • How do I file a claim?

    You may personally file a claim if your employer does not report your accident, denies your injury by accident, or if you believe you did not receive all of your benefits. To file a claim you must submit a Form 50 or Form 52 to the Commission.  When filing a claim on a Form 50 or Form 52, mark the box 13a. which states, “I am filing a claim. I am not requesting a hearing at this time.”  However, if you believe that you are not receiving the benefits that you are entitled, you should contact an attorney immediately so that you can properly request a hearing

  • What medical treatment am I entitled to receive?

    You are entitled to all necessary medical treatment that is likely to lessen your disability. Workers’ compensation generally pays for surgery, hospitalization, medical supplies, prosthetic devices, and prescriptions. Keep in mind that in most circumstances in order to receive these benefits you must go to the doctor chosen by your employer or its insurance representative.

  • How is the compensation rate determined?

    You are entitled to compensation at the rate of 66 2/3 percent of your average weekly wage based on the four quarters prior to your injury, but no more than the maximum average weekly wage determined each year by the South Carolina Department of Employment and Workforce. If you are working two or more jobs at the time of accident, those wages may be included as part of the average weekly wage and compensation rate.

  • Will I get compensated for missing time from work because of my injury?

    The law requires a seven-day waiting period before benefits can be paid. If you are out of work for more than seven days, payments will come from your employer’s insurance representative. If you are out of work for more than 14 days, you will receive compensation even for the first seven days. You can expect payments to be made directly to you and these should continue until the doctor releases you to return to work.

  • When are my benefits terminated?

    After the doctor releases you to return to work with or without restrictions, within 150 days of notification of the accident, you should receive two copies of Form 15 with Section II completed indicating that compensation has been stopped and for what reasons. If the insurance carrier stops your compensation, and if you disagree, complete Section III of the Form 15 and send it to the Commission’s Judicial Department. This is your way to request a hearing to be held in sixty (60) days. If the doctor releases you to return to work after the 150-day notification period, your employer or insurance representative will ask you to sign a Form 17 (receipt of compensation) after you have been back to work for 15 days.

  • What if the doctor releases me to light duty? 

    You must accept light work if it is ordered. If you do not accept, all compensation may cease as long as you refuse to return to work. You have a right to a hearing if you believe that you are not able to do the work assigned to you. If you return to light work before you are fully discharged by the doctor at a wage less than you were earning at the time of your original injury, you are entitled to weekly compensation at the rate of  66 2/3% of the difference between your average weekly wage and your new wage.

  • What if I receive an impairment rating?  

    If you receive an impairment rating, then you may be entitled to additional benefits under workers compensation.  We strongly urge anyone who is injured to contact an attorney  if their injury involves a surgery or a impairment to a body part.  Without an attorney you may be required to have a hearing against the insurance company’s doctor.  It has been our practice that insurance company never want to pay what you are entitled to receive based on the level of impairment or disability from your work related injury.

  • Do I get reimbursed for my travel expenses when I go to the doctor?

    Yes, if the round trip distance is more than ten miles from your home. Effective August 23, 2004, Commission approved allowance for trips to a pharmacy if the round trip distance is more than ten miles from your home. You should be reimbursed for the round trip mileage at the rate allowed state employees for mileage.

  • Can I get a second opinion if I am not happy with the doctor to whom the insurance carrier refers me?  

    Under certain circumstances you can obtain a second opinion, but the insurance carrier will likely send you to another “insurance company doctor.”  If you need a second opinion, we strongly urge you to contact our firm so that we can obtain a fair and impartial  second opinion from a trusted physician.

  • Who sends me my weekly check?

    Your employer is required to have workers’ compensation insurance if they have four or more employees and the insurance carrier will be responsible to pay compensation to you if you are out of work for more than seven days.  If the insurance company has not started you checks, or if your checks are delayed or not timely coming to your address, you need to contact our office immediately to protect your rights.

If you or a loved one has a question about any worker’s compensation issue that you are facing, please do not hesitate to contact us today.   Often times a claim for workers compensation benefits can be tricky to navigate on your own, and the insurance companies can be notorious for my protecting the injured workers so that it can save money.  Don’t put your financial benefits in the hands of a workers’ compensation insurance adjuster without first talking to a seasoned worker’s compensation attorney.  We are here to help, so call the Goings Law Firm today at (803) 350-9230.


SC Worker’s Compensation Answers: Am I stuck with the Workers Compensation Doctor?

Do you feel like this when you treat with the Insurance Company Doctor?

Question: Do I have to use the workers comp insurance doctor?

Answer:

This is a question that we often hear from individuals who are dissatisfied with the medical care they been receiving from their employer’s worker’s compensation insurance carrier. For individuals who choose to go through this legal process by themselves the answer is most likely yes….you are stuck with their doctor. To those who seek the proper legal representation the answer and the outcome can be quite different.

The South Carolina Worker’s Compensation Act provides that individuals who are injured while working on the job are entitled to medical benefits. These benefits need to be provided at no expense to the injured worker. At first blush, the Workers Compensation Act provides that those individuals seeking medical treatment must receive treatment initially from a doctor provided by the employer and their worker’s compensation insurance carrier. That medical treatment must continue until it lessens the period of disability or the insurance doctor has placed you at maximum medical improvement (“MMI”). Similar to how your car’s damage is devalued instantly in an automobile accident by the insurance carrier, some injured workers find the insurance carrier’s physician devalue their injuries as well. This process often leads to months of frustration treating with a physician who will not listen to their needs or hastily rushes them out the door to end treatment.

If you have the proper legal representation, however, the process may be very different. Prior to my representation of injured workers, I worked as counsel for 14 years representing workers compensation insurance carriers. I have worked with some excellent carriers and physicians and unfortunately have seen firsthand some of the struggles injured workers face when paired with some carriers and physicians who do not care. My unique perspective allows me to know which physicians to steer away from and how to utilize the insurance industry standards and protocols for changing medical providers. We work, using the law, to obtain second opinions provided by the carriers or through our own means to allow our clients to get the best medical treatment that they need. Let me see if I can provide you that same medical treatment. For free consultation on your workers compensation claim, call me at 803-350-9230.
Answered by Christian E. Boesl, Manager of the Workers’ Compensation Department


Welcome Back Mallory Haber!

Mallory Haber

The Goings Law Firm is excited to have Mallory Haber back with the firm. Mallory helped with the start of the Goings Law Firm in 2011! We are so lucky to have her back!!
Mallory attended the University of South Carolina and graduated in 2005. Upon graduation, Mallory began working as a legal assistant at a firm in Columbia. Upon obtaining her paralegal certification, Mallory began working at the Goings Law Firm. Mallory then moved down to Charleston and worked as a paralegal at a firm on Daniel Island. Mallory returned to Columbia and the Goings Law Firm this Fall and couldn’t be more excited. In her free time, Mallory loves watching all Gamecock sports, and hanging out with her husband and dog.

Thousands of possibly defective CPR training air valves recalled in the US

A Massachusetts-based importer has issued a recall to estimated 10,000 units of air valves used in training people to conduct a cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) due to a problem that could cause harm to people using it, a cpsc.gov article stated on November 23.

According to the recall, the “Practi-VALVE” CPR training air valves of Work ‘N Leisure may possibly cause choking injuries to intended users if a part of it suddenly detaches while being used. In the recall documents submitted by Work ‘N Leisure, the cap attached at the end of the air valves could choke the user when they use it in mouth-to-mouth CPR training using a dummy. Before the recall was issued, the company and the CPSC have been notified of three air valve end-caps accidentally getting into the trainees’ mouth or throat. People who might have the air valves bearing Lot 3197 have been advised to stop from using it and coordinate with the recalling company for the free product replacement.

People could find themselves seriously injured as a result of using defective products sold in the market. If you experienced this, the Columbia product liability lawyers of Goings Law Firm, LLC may possibly help you get compensation from negligent companies. Call us today at (803) 350-9230 to learn more about your legal options.


Columbia Flooding Causes Catastrophic Insurance Property Damage Claims

A view of the Columbia Canal, right, and the Congaree River at left. The aerial tour Monday was provided by the SC Army National Guard. 10/5/15

 

Over the weekend the state of South Carolina received torrential rainfall that caused historic flooding across our state. Our hometown of Columbia has experienced especially catastrophic damage. Many people have lost their homes to rising floodwaters. Others have been injured in auto accidents resulting from many of South Carolina’s roads and bridges being washed out. As we begin to pick up the pieces and Columbia and South Carolina moves into the clean-up stage of this disaster, there is a lot of work to be done and we are here to help you get through these difficult times.

 

If you, a loved one, a neighbor, or even someone you know has been the victim of this natural disaster, then contact the Goings Law Firm, LLC to find out if we can help. For homes and property damaged by the storms, if the insurance company has denied your homeowners or property damage claim, then please contact us immediately. Additionally, if you suffered injuries in an automobile during the flood or if you automobile was lost or totaled in the floodwaters, call us to find out if we can help you manage your claim with the insurance company. Claims involving flood insurance can be complex and challenging without the assistance of an experienced lawyer. At the Goings Law Firm, LLC we will be there for you to help you through your difficult time. Call the Goings Law Firm, LLC today at (803) 350-9230 for a free case consultation.


The Deadly Days of Summer: Use extra safety precautions on South Carolina roads to prevent trucking accidents and auto accidents.

Automotive and traffic safety experts often refer to the period of time between Memorial Day and Labor Day as the “Deadly Days of Summer”. This time period is given that name because summertime always brings an increase in accidents on our roadways. This is especially true for states like South Carolina where many tourists will be traveling into and through South Carolina on the way to vacation. The Goings Law Firm, LLC has already reported to you about two major accidents that occurred on I-26 in just the first week after Memorial Day. Both accidents had major damage and shut down the entire interstate for hours. Your can read about the Charleston I-26 accident by clicking here and the Columbia I-26 accident by clicking here.

In addition to the two I-26 accidents, last week we also reported that fatal accidents are already on the rise in South Carolina. Combining the rise in fatal statistics with the already dangerous summer days ahead means that drivers should use extremely heightened caution as they take to the road this summer. The Goings Law Firm, LLC wants you to stay safe on the road this summer, and we have included a few safety tips below to help you do that.

Safety tips for drivers on the road this summer

One of the key safety tips to remember while driving this summer is to always keep your cool and remain patient. When a driver becomes impatient while in high traffic conditions, he/she becomes an “aggressive driver.” Aggressive driving is major cause of deadly accidents on our roadways. So, always remember to keep your cool behind the wheel. Further, remember to look out for other dangerous and aggressive drivers behind the wheel. This is often referred to as “defensive driving”, which is a fundamental key to safety on the roadway. Also, keep in mind these other safety tips while on the roadways:

  • Always wear you seatbelt, and ensure that all passengers are also wearing their seatbelts.
  • Obey all traffic signs, yield signs, and instructions.
  • Always use your turn signal, and give plenty notice to other drivers by signaling well before applying the breaks or changing lanes.
  • Keep a sharp lookout for pedestrians, especially in crosswalk areas.
  • Obey the speed limit.
  • Move over for accidents and emergency vehicles.
  • Give motorcycles and eighteen-wheeler trucks plenty of room.
  • Do not follow too closely on the highway or interstate.
  • Ensure all children and child seats are secured properly in the car.
  • Do not text and drive (It’s against the law- click here for more).
  • Do not talk on the phone while driving.

Of course, this is not an exhaustive list, just some quick tips to keep you and your family safe as you take to the road. Summer is a great time to enjoy the outdoors, but keep in mind that convertibles and motorcycles pose a greater safety risk and drivers must take extra precautions when operating these vehicles.

The Goings Law Firm, LLC has also written extensively about motorcycle safety here on our website. To read more about motorcycle safety, click here.

Accidents can happen to anyone. If you are involved in an accident this summer, then contact a South Carolina Accident Attorney at the Goings Law Firm, LLC.

Even the most careful drivers can be involved in accidents because of the negligence or recklessness of other drivers on the road. If you or a loved one have been injured in an auto accident, motorcycle accident, or trucking related accident, then call Robert F. Goings at the Goings Law Firm, LLC today. By seeking punitive damages, we seek to deter aggressive driving by punishing drivers for their wrongful conduct. When you are involved in an accident, there can be many complex issues involved with a case. It is important to hire an attorney who is experienced in dealing with the many complex issues that might arise. Robert F. Goings is a skilled South Carolina Accident attorney, and will advocate on your behalf to get you the results that you deserve. Call (803) 350-9230 today for a free case consultation.


Trucking Accident Shuts Down Arthur Ravenel, Jr. Bridge in Charleston, S.C.

http://www.postandcourier.com/storyimage/CP/20150527/PC16/150529378/AR/0/AR-150529378.jpg&maxw=800&q=90

Last week, on March 27, 2015, an accident involving an eighteen-wheeler tanker truck and a Chevrolet sedan caused the Ravenel Bridge to be shut down for nine hours. A 31-year old woman, who was driving the Chevy sedan, caused the accident. The sedan swerved into the left lane to avoid hitting a disabled vehicle located on the right side of the road. The woman veered across two lanes of travel and sideswiped an eighteen-wheeler tanker truck. The woman was trapped in her car and she had to be freed by the fire department. She was transported to MUSC for further treatment.

The tanker truck was carrying 7,800 gallons of diesel fuel. The accident caused damage to some of the tanker’s valves. As a result of the accident, the tanker leaked 300 gallons of fuel onto the bridge. It is unknown how much fuel leaked off of the bridge and into the Cooper River below. Hazmat crews and the U.S. Coast Guard were called in to help manage the pollution from the spill. The clean-up process took nine hours. Clean-up crews were battling heat exhaustion and had to work in shifts in order to clean up the spill.

To read more about this story: Click Here!

http://www.gototeam.com/wp-content/uploads/Charleston19.jpgThe Arthur Ravenel, Jr. Bridge is part of South Carolina’s Highway 17 and U.S. Interstate 26. It connects the City of Charleston with Mt. Pleasant. The Ravenel Bridge has become a major symbol and icon for the Charleston area and it is also a major commuter route for traffic going in and out of the city. More than 75,000 cars cross the bridge daily.

Tractor-trailers and 18-wheelers, fill our nation’s highways, but sharing the road with these vehicles can carry substantial risks for drivers. The size and power of these vehicles can cause truck accident to have traumatizing repercussions. When a truck is carrying hazardous or flammable materials, like Diesel fuel, the damage and injuries from an accident are often magnified even more. In fact, truck accident victims often face consequences ranging from broken bones to permanent brain damage, and in the most extreme circumstances sometimes even wrongful death.

We are South Carolina’s Truck Accident lawyers. If you or a loved one has been injured in a trucking accident, then contact the Goings Law Firm, LLC today. With the help of an experienced truck accident attorney, you may be able to better hold the party responsible for the truck accident that harmed you or your loved one and get the justice you need. Call us at (803) 350-9230 today to talk about your case and learn more about what we can do for you.


Airbag Manufacturer Takata Issues Largest Auto Recall in U.S. History

On May 19, 2015 Japanese automobile safety manufacturing company issued a massive recall on over 34 million cars. The cars were recalled because of a faulty airbag that once deployed can explode spraying shrapnel throughout the car during a crash. Thus far, it is reportedly believed that six deaths have been caused as a result of this auto defect.

The company has had safety problems with airbags for years, and this latest recall makes it the largest ever in U.S. history. Takata installs airbags in many major car manufacturers. The largest automakers who have used Takata airbags include, General Motors, Volkswagen, and Honda.

This recall is an example that auto defects can affect anyone. If you or a loved one has been injured by a Takata airbag or similar airbag product, then contact the Goings Law Firm, LLC today. Although most auto accidents in Columbia are the result of driver error, a substantial portion are caused by defective vehicle equipment or design. Unfortunately, accidents caused by defective vehicles often could be prevented were it not for the negligent behavior on the part of the designer, manufacturer, or retailer. If you or someone you love has suffered because of a defective vehicle, the Columbia product liability lawyers at the Goings Law Firm, LLC can help you hold the responsible parties accountable. Call our offices in Columbia today at (803) 350-9230 for a consultation.

To read more about the Takata Airbag story, click here!


What South Carolinians Need to Know about “Chandler’s Law.”

Chandler’s Law is a law that was passed by the South Carolina General Assembly on May 11, 2011. The law establishes crucial safety requirements and regulations for children who operate all terrain vehicles, better known as “ATV’s or “4-Wheelers.” The law is named in honor of Chandler Saylor. Chandler was a young boy from South Carolina who died in a tragic ATV accident while visiting a friend’s house. Chandler was supposed to be at a “swimming” party. His parents did not know Chandler would be riding ATV’s at the party. In the wake of their son’s death, Chandler’s parents worked with the general assembly for eight years to ensure that South Carolina passed adequate ATV safety laws for children.

Here are some of the relevant provisions of Chandler’s Law that South Carolinian’s should be aware of:

  • A child must be 6 years old to ride an ATV.
  • If a child is under age 16 and does not have a driver’s license, then they are not allowed to have passengers on the ATV.
  • If a child is 15 years old or younger and will be riding an ATV on public land or on private property without a parent’s or legal guardian’s direct visual supervision, then they must take a professional ATV training course before riding an ATV.
  • All children 15 years old and younger must wear a helmet and safety goggles when riding an ATV.
  • It is unlawful for a parent or legal guardian with a child who is less than 16 years old to knowingly allow their child to operate an ATV in violation of the Age Restriction Warning Label affixed by the manufacturer of the ATV.

** Please note that this is not an exhaustive list of what is required under Chandler’s Law. For more information on the provisions of Chandler’s Law, you may want to look at these links below:

  • Children’s Trust of South Carolina, Chandler’s Law FAQ: Click Here
  • To read the text Chandler’s Law in its entirety: Click Here

Consult with a South Carolina ATV Accident Attorney Today!

At the Goings Law Firm, LLC, we believe that children are one of the greatest joys in this world. Too many children have been injured or killed as a result of the dangers posed by ATV’s. Chandler’s law attempts to ensure greater safety for our children. Our thoughts and prayers go out Chandler’s parents, and all those like him who have suffered similar tragedies.

If you or a loved one has been injured as a result of an ATV accident, either due to the negligence of others or a manufacturer’s defect, then contact the Goings Law Firm, LLC today. Our ATV accident attorneys understand the pain, suffering, and mental trauma that can be involved with the loss of a loved one. We are experienced personal injury attorneys in Columbia, South Carolina, and offer a no-obligation and free case evaluation by calling (803) 350-9230 or contacting us online.


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