Riverside motorcycle accident attorney safety tipsNow that the warmer months are here, motorcycles are increasingly present on the roads. May is Motorcycle Safety Awareness Month, and the California Highway Patrol (CHP) in particular are encouraging education and awareness about roadway safety in an effort to reduce the number of collisions involving motorcyclists. According to the CHP’s Statewide Integrated Traffic Records System, an estimated 466 motorcyclists were killed in traffic accidents and more than 14,000 motorcyclists were injured in 2017.

Motorcyclist Safety Tips

The California Department of Motor Vehicles provides a number of tips on how motorcyclists can protect their safety on the roadways, including:

  • Be visible and communicate intentions – Motorcyclists should wear bright or reflective clothing and ride in the best lane position to be seen. It is also important to use the proper signals, headlights, running lights, and brake lights.
  • Maintain an adequate space cushion – It is important for motorcyclists to allow themselves enough space when following, being followed, lane splitting, passing, and being passed.
  • Be aware – Keeping aware of one’s surroundings is important – cyclists should monitor vehicles in front of them and traffic approaching from behind.
  • Scan the path of travel – As with all drivers, motorcyclists should look at least 10 to 15 seconds ahead.
  • Be prepared to act – It is important to remain alert and know how to carry out proper collision-avoidance techniques.

In addition to driving safely, the CDMV encourages motorcyclists to wear protective clothing to reduce injuries in the case of a collision. By law, California motorcyclists are required to wear a U.S. Department of Transportation compliant helmet when riding a motorcycle. The CDVM also recommends that motorcyclists wear sturdy jackets, long pants, over-the-ankle-boots, and gloves.

Driver Awareness Tips

Motorcycle Safety Awareness month is not only about educating motorcyclists, but also about educating other drivers to be more aware. Drivers can practice safety around motorcycles by following these tips:

  • Be aware of blind spots – Because motorcycles are smaller than other vehicles, they can be difficult to see. Motorists should be sure to double check their blind spots when turning or merging.
  • Slow down behind motorcycles – Motorcyclists can be more sensitive to changes on the road and can move more quickly than other vehicles, so drivers should make sure they have proper time to react.
  • Increase following distance – Leaving enough room between one’s car and a motorcycle is an important part of preventing accidents. Increasing following distance will give drivers enough time and space to react.
  • Use turn signals – As always, all drivers on the road should use turn signals to help communicate their intentions.
  • Be careful with left turns – Any turns can be dangerous, but drivers are often unaware of their blind spots when turning left. Taking extra caution when making a left turn can help reduce motorcycle accidents.

Contact a San Diego Motorcycle Accident Attorney

May is Motorcycle Safety Awareness month, but motorcycle accidents happen year-round. If you have been injured in a motorcycle collision, the skilled attorneys of Martinez & Schill, LLP can help you receive compensation for the damages you have suffered. Contact our San Diego personal injury lawyers today at 619-512-5995 to schedule a free consultation.





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Riverside motorcycle accident lawyer lane splittingLast year, lane splitting, the practice in which motorcyclists ride between lanes of traffic, was officially made legal in California. While lane splitting has been found to reduce certain types of injuries, motorcycle accidents involving lane splitting continue to occur. For example, a recent fatality occurred on Interstate 5 in Encinitas when a lane splitting cyclist was knocked off their motorcycle by another driver.

Benefits of Lane Splitting

The legalization of lane splitting was intended to help motorcyclists have a safer ride. Lane splitting benefits motorcyclists by:

  • Decreasing traffic congestion – When motorcyclists lane split, they move away from cars and trucks, which helps to relieve road congestion.
  • Preventing motorcycles from overheating – Many motorcycles do not have radiators, and they rely on air-cooling. The motion from lane splitting helps to keep engines cool so a motorcycle does not overheat.
  • Decreasing the risk of some injuries – The American Motorcyclist Association found that during heavy traffic, motorcycle drivers who engaged in lane splitting were less likely to be rear-ended by other drivers. These motorcyclists also had a lower risk of experiencing head and torso injuries.

Avoiding Accidents and Preventing Injury

Motorcyclists can take some measures to protect themselves while lane splitting and decrease their chances of getting into a crash. If you are lane splitting, remember to:

  • Monitor your speed – Motorcyclists should be mindful of their speed and the speed of the cars around them to prevent accidents when lane splitting. A cyclist should not try to change lanes when the flow of traffic is moving at 50 miles per hour or more. Also, a motorcyclist should not drive more than 15 miles per hour faster than the vehicles around them.
  • Wear a helmet – Motorcyclists who wear helmets are almost 70 percent less likely to suffer brain injuries in a motorcycle accident. They also reduce the odds of dying in a motorcycle crash by nearly 40 percent.
  • Drive sober – Driving while under the influence of alcohol or drugs can contribute to accidents and fatalities. In 2012, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration found that 27 percent of motorcyclists were intoxicated when they got into a fatal car crash.

Even if a lane splitting cyclist is driving responsibly, they may be injured by the recklessness of another driver, which is why it is important to speak to a lawyer if you are injured in a lane splitting accident.

Legal Representation for Injured Motorcyclists

Motorists have a duty to be vigilant of other vehicles around them, whether that vehicle is a car or another vehicle like a motorcycle. If you have been injured in a motorcycle accident involving lane splitting, contact Martinez & Schill, LLP to discuss your options for pursuing compensation. Call 619-512-5995 to schedule a free consultation with one of our San Diego motorcycle accident attorneys.






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Riverside highway freeway car accident lawyerIn San Diego, the current average length of a person’s commute is 26 minutes, which is the longest average commuting time for the city in the past 10 years. This time spent commuting can be a nuisance, but the potential for highway or freeway accidents makes it dangerous as well. According to a recent study, San Diego’s I-5 and I-15 highways are among the 25 most deadly highways in the United States.

Why Highway Accidents Occur

Commuting, especially during rush hour, can be a dangerous activity, and even minor car accidents can result in serious injuries to drivers or passengers. Factors which contribute to commuter car crashes include:


The population of San Diego has grown significantly over time, resulting in more drivers taking to the road. But while the number of people living and working in San Diego has increased, public transportation has not kept up with the level of growth, which has led to crowded highways. San Diego roads become especially busy during rush hour, and the increased number of vehicles on the road and the unexpected changes in the speed of traffic make accidents more likely.


Drivers may try to save time on their commute by speeding, but this can backfire if their speeding causes an accident. If a driver is speeding, they will have less distance between their vehicle and another vehicle if they need to come to a stop, and they may end up hitting the other driver. A speeding driver also may have less time to react when merging lanes or making a turn, and they may be unable to avoid an accident. Crashes involving speeding can result in severe injuries, due to the increased momentum of vehicles traveling at high speeds.

Poorly Maintained Roads

A 2011 Federal Highway Administration survey found that San Diego ranked fourth in the United States for poor road conditions. Driving on roads with rough pavement, potholes, and road deterioration may result in hundreds or thousands of dollars in car damages. Drivers may decide to postpone costly repairs to their vehicles, increasing their odds of causing an accident. A driver may also struggle to maintain control of their vehicle when driving on rough roads, resulting in a crash. Out of the 33,000 traffic fatalities which occur every year in the United States, one third have been linked to poor road conditions.


After a long day at work or school, drivers may not give their full attention to driving. If a person is preoccupied with using their phone or doing other tasks such as applying makeup or eating, they are unable to react immediately to their changing driving conditions, and they may lose control of their vehicle, causing a deadly accident.

Compensation for Your Injuries

Injuries resulting from an accident on a highway or freeway can impact a person both physically and financially. If you or a passenger in your vehicle have been injured in an accident on a highway or freeway, call our San Diego personal injury lawyers right away at 619-512-5995. The lawyers at Martinez & Schill, LLP are ready to answer any of your legal questions and help you get back on the road to recovery.







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Riverside construction accident lawyer third party liabilityIn 2016, one in five worker deaths in the United States occurred in the construction industry. Outside of traffic accidents, falls were the leading cause of these deaths, accounting for 384 of 991 fatalities, or nearly 40 percent. In addition, the 2017 Liberty Mutual Workplace Safety Index found that falls were the third most common cause of workplace injuries. These types of construction site accidents can have devastating consequences for workers and their families, and people who have been injured should understand their options for receiving compensation beyond what is provided through workers’ compensation.

Seeking Compensation for an Accident

By law, all serious injuries or deaths resulting from a job must be reported to the California Division of Occupational Safety and Health (Cal/OSHA). Workers’ compensation can provide an injured employee with a basic source of income, but it may not fairly compensate an injured person for the expenses associated with a construction injury or death. Through legal action against a third party, an employee or their family can attempt to recover additional compensation for their damages.

A third party may owe a worker or their family additional money for several reasons. If the worker experienced physical pain, or if the worker or their family experienced emotional pain, these would not be adequately compensated under typical worker’s compensation. Also, if a worker suffered a debilitating injury, the third party may be required to make an additional financial contribution towards the injured worker or their family.

When Is a Fall Considered a Third-Party Injury?

A third party can be held liable for a fall injury if their negligence was a factor in the injury. For example, the owner of the property where an injury occurred may be held liable if they did not properly maintain the property, leading to hazards in a building such as holes or cracks.

The manufacturer of construction equipment or materials may also be a liable third party if they produced defective products, such as faulty ladders. Subcontractors could also be held responsible if they do not take necessary precautions, such as providing an employee with all the safety equipment and training needed for a construction project.

Legal Assistance After a Fall

If you have been injured in a workplace fall, or if your family member passed away due to complications of a construction site accident, the attorneys at Martinez & Schill, LLP can help you receive the compensation you deserve. Contact our San Diego construction site accident attorneys today at 619-512-5995 to arrange a free consultation.







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San Diego pedestrian accident lawyerPedestrian fatalities have been on the rise in the United States in recent years, and they account for 16% of all deaths in motor vehicle accidents. Unfortunately, the San Diego area is no exception; San Diego County ranked seventh highest in pedestrian traffic deaths in the nation, according to a 2016 report by the Governors Highway Safety Association (GHSA). These pedestrian accidents can occur for a number of different reasons, and both drivers and pedestrians can play a role.

Pedestrians and Comparative Negligence

Following a pedestrian accident, the courts will review the circumstances of the case to determine who was at fault. A pedestrian can receive compensation for their injuries, even if they were partially responsible. California follows comparative negligence laws, which means that if the driver is found to be at fault at all, the pedestrian can receive some compensation.

Some common factors involved in accidents include:

Traffic Violations

A driver may be found at fault if they do not obey the rules of the road. This includes following laws regarding right of way, intersections, crosswalks, traffic signals, and signs.
Just as drivers have an obligation to obey traffic laws, pedestrians must follow pedestrian traffic regulations. If a pedestrian jaywalks or crosses a street outside of a crosswalk, they may be found partially responsible for any resulting accidents.


Both pedestrians and drivers can contribute to a traffic accident if they do not give their full attention to traffic conditions. A pedestrian who is busy listening to music on their headphones may not hear the sound of an oncoming car. A driver preoccupied with adjusting their GPS system may not see a pedestrian crossing in front of them.
Cell phone use is a major source of distraction for both drivers and pedestrians. Smartphone use increased by 236% between 2010 and 2016, and data from the National Electronic Injury Surveillance database indicates that the number of ER visits related to cell phone use has increased at a similar rate over the same period.

Drug and Alcohol Use

Use of alcohol or drugs can impair a driver’s ability to safely operate their vehicle, and alcohol and drug use can also make a pedestrian less aware of their surroundings. In nearly one half of pedestrian deaths, the driver or pedestrian had consumed alcohol.
Some safety advocates have suggested there may also be a link between marijuana use and car accidents. The GHSA report found that in the seven states and the District of Columbia which have legalized recreational marijuana, pedestrian deaths increased by 16 percent in 2017. In all other states, pedestrian deaths decreased by six percent.

Contact Our Pedestrian Accident Lawyers

If you or a loved one has been injured as a pedestrian in a traffic accident, you have may be able to pursue compensation that will address your medical bills, lost income, and pain and suffering. The San Diego personal injury attorneys at Martinez & Schill, LLP can help you understand your rights and walk you through the process of filing a personal injury claim. To schedule a free consultation, call our office at 619-512-5995.





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San Diego bike accident lawyerSan Diego has had a sudden massive influx of “dockless” bikes and scooters dropped on its streets and sidewalks. From the Gaslamp Quarter to Hillcrest and La Jolla, bikes from different companies (LimeBike, Mobike, and Ofo) can be found for rent on almost every corner. Interestingly, the companies that have left the bikes have not provided the necessary protective gear for riding them: helmets. Will this result in more serious bicycle accidents in San Diego?

One program, “Discover Bikes,” is operated in partnership with the City of San Diego.  However, this company acknowledges on their website, “Discover Bike does not provide helmets at stations. It is the user’s responsibility to provide their own helmet.”

These companies have created a dangerous situation for many locals and visitors alike, in that people may pick up a bike on any street corner and ride around without a helmet, which can lead to serious injury. However, these bike companies are not taking responsibility to prevent such injury and require the rider to assume all safety risks, even when helmets are not provided.

Serious and life-altering injury, such as a traumatic brain injury, can occur when hit by a car while riding a bike or if a rider falls and strikes their head. It seems irresponsible to provide such bikes without the safety equipment. The question is: should these companies be held responsible?

While the bikes appear to provide an environmentally friendly option for traveling around the city or local areas, the safety implications far exceed the benefits. Helmetless riders, along with inexperienced riders not riding in accordance with traffic laws, may lead to an increase in bicycle accidents in these areas. By providing these bikes without helmets, it appears these companies are brushing off helmet laws.

Further, additional injuries could result when a bike is not maintained or sustains damage, and the bike is then left in a dangerous condition for the next unsuspecting user to come along and use a bike that could be dangerous.

If you have been injured in a bicycle accident, please contact the San Diego personal injury attorneys of Martinez & Schill, LLP at 951-200-4630 to schedule a free consultation. We can help.





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San Diego car accident passenger injury lawyerPassengers in a motor vehicle rely upon their drivers to be attentive and responsible so that they can arrive at their destination safely. Unfortunately, drivers do not always meet these expectations.

If an accident occurs, a passenger may wonder what their legal options are. A passenger injured in a car accident can pursue legal action against the driver of their vehicle, the driver of another vehicle involved in the accident, or both. However, they must prove that their injuries are substantial and that one of the drivers involved was negligent in some way.

California is a pure comparative negligence state, which means the passenger does not need to prove a driver is 100 percent at fault in order to receive some compensation. It is important, however, for the passenger to act quickly, because they have only two years from the day they are injured to file a civil suit for the accident.

There are multiple factors that can be used to make a case that a driver was negligent, including:

  • Drugs and Alcohol – Alcohol and drug use can impair a driver’s ability to safely operate their vehicle, and this impairment can play a significant role in car accidents. If a driver is over the legal limit for blood alcohol content (BAC), they may face a driving under the influence (DUI) charge and be held responsible for any injuries to passengers. In California, it is also illegal for drivers to consume or smoke marijuana while on the road.
  • Traffic Violations – If a driver fails to follow driving laws, they may be liable for any passenger injuries resulting from a car crash. Courts will take into consideration traffic violations such as speeding or failing to signal when making a turn when deciding if a driver is at fault for an accident.
  • Condition of Driver’s Vehicle – Drivers are expected to maintain a safe vehicle. If a driver has failed to perform routine maintenance on their vehicle, or if they have delayed necessary repairs, a passenger may be able to use this information in a lawsuit after an accident occurs.
  • Distractions and Inattention – Drivers have a responsibility to pay attention to the roads, because their actions affect not only their own safety, but the safety of all those around them. If an accident occurs when a driver is absorbed in tasks other than driving, such as changing a radio channel, searching for an item in their car, or using their cell phone, the court may find them guilty of negligent driving.

Contact Our San Diego Car Accident Lawyers

When a passenger is injured in an accident due to the actions of a negligent driver, it is important that they understand their rights and act swiftly, so that they can receive any due compensation. The attorneys at Martinez & Schill, LLP are dedicated to helping injured passengers attain the compensation they deserve. Contact a Riverside car accident lawyer today at 951-200-4630 to set up a free consultation.




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San Diego day care center injury attorneyFor parents, child care can be an essential resource. Upon hearing that a child was injured at a day care facility, a parent may feel a variety of emotions, such as fear, confusion, and anger. Having placed their trust and hard-earned money into a day care center, parents expect their child to be protected. After an injury occurs, they may consider whether they have grounds for a lawsuit.

Legal Consequences and Waivers

Parents are often required to sign a waiver before enrolling their child in day care, but they do not forfeit all legal rights regarding their child’s safety. In cases where negligence or abuse is proven, a day care center should be held liable.

Safe Grounds and Environment

There are a number of standards that California child care providers must meet in order to continue operation. The child care facility must be well maintained, and precautions must be taken to avoid hazards. Pools must be fenced in or otherwise made inaccessible to children. Fire safety standards must be met by providing a smoke detector and a fire extinguisher in the child care facility. If a fire occurs, it must be reported to local authorities within 24 hours. When a child care center fails to meet basic requirements like these, they can be charged with negligence.

Child Abuse and Neglect

Children at day care centers must be supervised by an adult at all times. This supervision helps to prevent accidents caused by children and makes it easier to account for children should an emergency occur. If day care providers do not keep a close watch on children, they may later be found guilty of neglect.

Use of corporal punishment in a child care facility is against the law and constitutes abuse. This includes bodily injury, threats, coercion, and withholding food, shelter, or clothing. By law, caretakers must report suspected child abuse. If a child’s injury is found to be caused by an intentional act of abuse, the child care center can face severe penalties.

Medical or Emergency Requirements

A day care center must ensure that all children have received the necessary vaccinations before they are admitted. If there are any exemptions, this must be documented by the center. Also, if a medical emergency occurs, parents and authorities must be notified in a timely manner. If a child incurs an injury while in child care, it must be reported to a parent or guardian on the same business day.

Contact our Day Care Accident Lawyers

Child care facilities have a duty to meet basic standards and prevent accidents. If your child has received an injury while at day care, and you suspect that negligence or abuse may have been involved, contact our San Diego day care accident lawyers at 619-512-5995 today to schedule a free consultation.



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San Diego fatigued driving car accident lawyerDriving under the influence of alcohol is a well-known cause of serious injuries and fatalities. However, driving without adequate sleep is a lesser known cause of similar tragic accidents. The Center for Disease Control and Prevention has found that going 24 hours without sleep is equivalent to having a blood alcohol concentration of 0.10 percent.

Drowsy driving is dangerous, but unfortunately, it is very common. A 2005 study by the National Sleep Foundation found that 60 percent of adult drivers in the United States have driven a vehicle despite feeling tired. While it is impossible to predict exactly when a fatigued driving accident will occur, there are some factors that are correlated with an increased risk:

  • Time of Day – The body’s internal clock, also known as a circadian rhythm, balances our energy by causing us to feel more alert or less alert at certain hours of the day. Drowsy driving accidents are most likely to occur around noon and between 12 a.m. and 6 a.m. due to a decrease in energy levels. Shift workers are more likely to be involved in fatigued driving accidents, because they are working against their natural circadian rhythms.
  • Age of the Driver – Younger drivers are the most likely to be involved in drowsy driving related collisions. According to former CHP Commissioner Joe Farrow, more teenagers die from car accidents than suicide, homicide, and cancer combined. Teenagers are at a greater risk than older adults because they are more active at night and less likely to be well-rested. Adults under 30 also have high rates of fatigued driving. In a 2002 study by the National Sleep Foundation, 71 percent of 18 to 29-year-olds said that they had driven while drowsy, compared to 52 percent of 36 to 64-year-olds and 19 percent of those 65 years and older.
  • Drug Interactions – Many prescription medications are labeled with a warning that the medications can cause drowsiness. Drivers make the road a more dangerous place for others when they ignore these warnings. When a driver is drowsy and on medication, their fatigue and impairment are increased, increasing the likelihood of an accident.

Currently, drowsy driving is less clear cut than other driving offenses. There is no standardized test to measure tiredness in the way a breathalyzer measures intoxication, and the lack of uniform national guidelines about drowsy driving makes it challenging to prosecute. Drivers must make their own judgments about their level of fatigue.

There is also a lack of education about fatigued driving. In a 1999 poll, the National Sleep Foundation found that 60 percent of US parents surveyed had not had talked about drowsy driving with their children. Later, the 2002 Sleep in America poll found that 96 percent of parents agreed with the idea that a driver’s license test should inform drivers about fatigued driving. Until the public becomes more aware of the severity of this issue and knows how much sleep a driver truly needs, drowsy driving accidents will continue to occur.

Our San Diego Car Accident Attorneys are Ready to Work for You

If you have been injured in a collision and suspect that the driver may have been drowsy while at the wheel, the skilled personal injury attorneys at Martinez & Schill, LLP can help you seek compensation for your damages. Contact our San Diego car accident attorneys today at 619-512-5995 to schedule a free consultation.





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San Diego slip and fall injury lawyersAlthough anyone can experience slip and fall injury, those experienced by older adults tend to be the most catastrophic. In fact, statistics indicate that falls are the most common cause of death and injury among Americans aged 65 or older. Learn what rights you may have if a fatality or injury occurs after a fall, and discover how our experienced attorneys can help.

Fall Injury Statistics for Older Americans

Statistics indicate that one in four Americans over the age of 65 experience a fall each year. Of those, approximately 2.8 million experience injuries, over 800,000 are hospitalized, and over 27,000 suffer a fatality. If broken down, that equates to one fall every 11 seconds and one death every 19 minutes.

Understanding Why Falling is So Dangerous for Older Adults

As the body ages, it can become frailer and less resilient if an injury occurs. It is this fact that dramatically increases the risk of severe injury in older Americans that have experienced a fall – but it is not the only concern. Complications, such as an infection or bed sores, are also more likely to occur if the victim needs surgery to correct an injury. They may also be at an increased risk for post-injury complications, such as blood clots and life-threatening head injuries.

Fatalities and Falls in Older Americans

A victim’s risk of fatality after a fall can be increased by more than just the type of injury they sustain. Age, overall health, and even their ability to pay for quality medical treatment can affect it as well. Sadly, these same factors can also impact the outcome of a personal injury case. Victims can mitigate against such issues with the help of an experienced attorney.

Contact Our San Diego Personal Injury Lawyers for Assistance

If you or someone you love has experienced a fatality after falling, you may be entitled to compensation. Unfortunately, seeking damages can be a complex process, and victims are disadvantaged against big corporations, medical facilities, and other locations where compensable falls typically occur. This is where the assistance of an attorney can make a difference.

Able to increase your chances of receiving full and fair compensation for any losses that you have experienced, and capable of giving you and your family the time you need to heal and grieve after the death of a loved one, Martinez & Schill, LLP is the firm to trust. Our seasoned San Diego wrongful death attorneys prioritize your best interests and financial future. No matter what the situation, we will aggressively pursue the most favorable outcome possible. Schedule your personalized consultation to get started. Call 619-512-5995 today.




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