According to the first nationwide analysis of “buzzed” drivers, there appears to be no safe level of alcohol in the bloodstream when it comes to driving. Based on information from a U.S. national database, researchers have concluded that driving with even a slight buzz puts drivers at a far greater risk of causing a traffic accident.

The authors of the study analyzed data from more than 570,000 collisions between 1994 and 2011. Drivers with a blood alcohol content (BAC) of .01 percent, the lowest level recorded in the dataset, were 46 percent more likely to be solely blamed for the crash than a sober driver. For both men and women, the likelihood of blame for the accident rose as blood alcohol level increased.

For a grown man, it takes only half of one 12-ounce beer to generate a .01 percent BAC reading on a Breathalyzer test, which is well below the U.S. legal driving limit of .08 percent. However, experienced drinkers begin to become impaired at a .05 BAC, and inexperienced drinkers become very impaired at much lower levels. This study demonstrates that having just one drink, no matter how small, has a real impact on traffic collisions so, based strictly on the data, the only safe driver is one with zero blood alcohol content.

Protecting Yourself from Buzzed Drivers

Some federal agencies recommend reducing the national legal BAC limit below .08 percent, and research certainly supports that. However, until this is accomplished, there are other steps you can take to keep yourself, and those around you safe. Don’t drive buzzed, and don’t get in the car with a buzzed driver. Do whatever it takes to get a sober driver behind the wheel, which may include calling a cab. Before you head out, have the number of a reputable cab company in your wallet, so you have a reliable and sober way to get home.

Contact An Attorney

If you or a loved one has been injured in a car crash involving a buzzed driver, you should contact an experienced personal injury attorney, such as those at Phillips Law Firm immediately. Victims of buzzed and drunk driving crashes often face expensive medical bills, lost wages, and other damages. You focus on yourself and your family, and let your attorney handle all the details.


A recent study shows that eating while driving is responsible for 80 percent of automobile accidents and 65 percent of scary “near misses”. Eating in the car is like any other form of distracted driving, it takes your mind off the road and adversely affects your reaction time. However, with today’s hectic schedules, more and more people are taking their meals in their cars.

A separate study showed that, out of 1,000 drivers, over 70% of drivers eat while driving and 83% consume beverages. Americans are so busy and spend so much time in their vehicles, so they view eating while driving as a way to save time.

This has also led law enforcement and highway patrol officers across the country to take action. Eating while driving is not illegal, it’s just unsafe. Officers have been prompted to take advantage of Distracted Driving Awareness Month to make enforcement contacts with people who appear to be distracted while driving, and citations can be issued for unsafe speeds related to distracted driving.

What Are The Most Dangerous Foods?

The study ranked some of the worst foods to eat while driving. Some of these are very obvious but a few might be surprising. We’ll start from the bottom.

10. Chocolate


9. Soft Drinks

Soft Drinks

8. Jelly Donuts


7. Fried Chicken

fried chicken

6. Ribs/Wings


5. Hamburgers


4. Chili


3. Tacos


2. Soup


1. Coffee


That’s right Seattleites, coffee is the worst food/beverage to consume while driving. It’s very likely to spill and possibly burn you, leading to some very unsafe driving.

The Dangers of Distracted Driving

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, every day in the United States, more than 9 people are killed and more than 1,060 people are injured in crashes involving a distracted driver.

The danger of distracted driving is a real and known threat. Distracted drivers cause serious injuries and claim thousands of lives every year. If you or a loved one is suffering because of injuries caused by a distracted driver, our personal injury attorneys  can help you recover compensation for your pain and suffering. Contact the Seattle personal injury lawyers at Phillips Law Firm today and let us evaluate your case and recommend a course of action.


The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety has released its list of vehicles that receive its highest award for safety, TOP SAFETY PICK and TOP SAFETY PICK+. Among the standouts for 2014 is Honda. Along with its Acura division, Honda has six vehicles earning a TOP SAFETY PICK+ award and another two that earned a basic TOP SAFETY PICK award. Other standouts include smaller companies like Volvo, Subaru and Mazda. Each of these companies had three vehicles earning TOP SAFETY PICK+ awards.

The Institute introduced the TOP SAFETY PICK award back in 2006 and since then, has gradually made the criteria to win more stringent. In 2007, they added a requirement for good protection in rear crashes and required that the vehicle offer electronic stability control. They later added additional requirements for protection in rollover crashes and in front small overlap crashes.

To earn the basic TOP SAFETY PICK award, vehicles must have top ratings in all five crash tests, including a good or acceptable rating in the new front small overlap crash test. To earn the TOP SAFETY PICK+ award, vehicles also have to offer an effective front crash prevention system, either forward collision warning or auto brake.

Front crash prevention systems have been spreading quickly through the vehicle fleet. As a result, there are more 2014 TOP SAFETY PICK+ winners than regular TOP SAFETY PICK winners.

Safety Tips to Avoid Car Crashes

Regardless of how many state-of-the-art safety features your vehicle has, most people would rather avoid a car crash altogether. Here are some helpful tips for staying safe on the road;

  • Don’t allow children to climb around inside the vehicle, they should be properly buckled in their car seats or in seat belts at all times
  • Avoid driving when you’re tired or under the influence of medication. Drowsiness will adversely affect your reaction time.
  • Don’t allow your cell phone to distract you from the task at hand. Don’t text or talk while you’re driving.
  • Drive defensively. Use signals when turning or changing lanes, look both ways before proceeding through an intersection, even if you have a green light, and most importantly, don’t speed. Watching out for other drivers will increase your chances of staying out of a crash.

If you have been injured in a car accident, an experienced personal injury attorney, like those at Phillips Law Firm, can help ensure you receive full benefits from the insurance company and determine whether you can file a claim for additional damages against the party at fault for the crash.


Recently, researchers from Columbia University’s Mailman School of Public Health collected data from six states that perform toxicology tests on drivers involved in fatal car accidents. Information gathered from California, Hawaii, Illinois, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, and West Virginia on over 23,500 drivers who died within one hour of a crash between 1999 and 2010 showed that fatal car crashes involving pot use have tripled in the U.S. During the same time period, alcohol contributed to forty percent of traffic fatalities.

Researchers concluded that drugged driving accounted for 28 percent of traffic deaths in 2010, which is a sixteen percent increase over 1999. They also discovered that marijuana was the primary drug involved in the increase. Marijuana contributed to only 4 percent of fatal crashes in 1999, compared to 12 percent in 2010. The study concluded that increase in marijuana use was consistent across gender and age groups. Marijuana impairs driving similar to the way alcohol use does.

The study determined that driving under the influence of drugs and alcohol simultaneously has increased. When a driver is under the influence of both alcohol and marijuana, they increase their risk of being involved in a fatal car crash to 24 times that of a sober person.

With the legalization of marijuana in Washington and other states across the country, these shocking statistics have become a wake-up call for highway safety officials.

How a Personal Injury Attorney Can Help

Every year, many lives are shattered by the unconscionable actions of other drivers, such as driving while under the influence of alcohol or drugs. As Seattle personal injury attorneys, we know that drugged driving is a relative plague on our state highways and city streets. We know that a wrongful death lawsuit can never bring back someone lost in a drugged driving traffic accident, but as legal experts in this area, we can help gain compensation for those families who have lost a loved one to senseless drugged driving wrecks.

Damages in a wrongful death lawsuit can be greatly contested; however, we know the best way to fight for the recovery of both tangible and intangible losses. As skilled professionals in the field of personal injury, we have the tools and experience to ensure that past, current, and future medical expenses will be covered for victims of impaired driving. Contact our office today to discuss your case.

Contact Seattle Car Accident Attorneys

The experienced personal injury lawyers at Phillips Law Firm are ready to help. If you are interested in learning more about your legal options, call us at 1-800-708-6000. Our Seattle personal injury lawsuit attorneys are waiting to assist you 24/7, offering a free case evaluation. Remember our no fee promise. If we do not recover anything for you, you do not owe us an attorney fee.


Driving under the influence is defined as operating a vehicle with a blood alcohol content (BAC) that is above the legal limit. In most jurisdictions, a BAC of .08% or higher is illegal and can be considered a crime; however, driving under the influence can also refer to a driver operating a vehicle while using drugs or medication. Committing a DUI is a serious crime punishable by large fines, suspension of one’s license and in the most severe cases, imprisonment. Driving under the influence of alcohol and drugs causes thousands of accidents every year that result in a devastating loss of life and take a huge financial toll on society.

The 10 Shocking DUI Accident Statistics

  1. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, a person is injured in a DUI accident every 90 seconds.
  2. Every day in America, twenty-seven people will die as a result of drunk driving accidents. That is an average of one every 53 minutes.
  3. During 2010, 211 children were killed in DUI accidents. Of those, sixty-two percent, or 131 children were riding with the intoxicated driver.
  4. Traffic accidents are the leading cause of death for teens, and approximately one-third of these accidents involve alcohol or another substance.
  5. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 10,228 people were killed in DUI accidents during 2010. This accounts for 31% of traffic-related deaths in the United States.
  6. At 23.4%, the rate of DUI is highest among people aged twenty-one to twenty-five. Approximately 5.8% of 16-17 year-olds and 15.1% of 18-20 year-olds confessed to having driven while intoxicated sometime during the past year.
  7. On average, a drunk driver will drive eighty times while under the influence before their first arrest.
  8. Alcohol impairment among drivers involved in fatal DUI accidents in 2010 was four times higher at night than during the day.
  9. According to the CDC, over 1.4 million drivers were arrested in 2010 for driving under the influence of alcohol or narcotics.
  10. It is estimated that one in three people in the United States will be involved in a DUI accident sometime in their life.

Stay Safe!

If a drunk driver injures you or someone you love, don’t hesitate to contact an experienced personal injury attorney, like those at Phillips Law Firm. Obtaining legal council will ensure that you receive maximum compensation for your injuries.


For the sixth consecutive year, the League of American Bicyclists has selected Washington as the most bicycle-friendly state in the country. This group has supported funding for biking legislation, bike programs and policies, infrastructure, education and planning since 2008.

Washingtonians have embraced bicycling as, not only a recreational past time and means of exercise, but as a legitimate mode of transportation that both enhances the quality of life and protects the environment. While the physical, economic, and environmental perks of cycling are plentiful, there are also an alarming number of bicycle accidents every year resulting in injury or death to cyclists.

Bicycle Accidents in Washington State and Across the Nation

The state has allotted nearly $18 million toward bicycle safety programs and the improvement of school routes. It is this dedication to improving infrastructure and growing ridership that consistently makes Washington the most bicycle-friendly state in the nation.

Despite this attention to safety, however, there were approximately six deaths from bicycle accidents in 2010. Bicycle accidents are an ever-present problem, particularly in Seattle. There are numerous intersections throughout the downtown area that are prone to bicycle accidents, and riders should be especially attentive in these areas.

Nationwide, there were 677 deaths from bicycle accidents reported in 2011. That number is down from 830 in 1995. There has also been a significant decrease in the number of injuries reported annually; 61,000 reported in 1995 compared to 38,000 in 2011, but there is still much work to do in order to raise awareness and remind drivers to share the road.

Alarming too is the number of hit-and-run bicycle accidents across the country. It is because of these hit-and-run accidents that three out of five at-fault drivers are never brought to justice.

Contact the Phillips Law Firm

Both minor and serious bicycle accidents happen every day, even though drivers are required to exercise reasonable care when sharing the road with cyclists. If a reckless or negligent driver has caused you or a family member to be injured in a bicycle accident, you may be entitled to financial compensation for your injuries.

If a negligent driver injures you or someone you love, an experienced Seattle bicycle accident attorney at Phillips Law Firm can help. If you are interested in learning more about your legal options, call us at 1-800-708-6000. Our Seattle personal injury lawsuit attorneys are waiting to assist you 24/7, offering a free case evaluation. Remember our no fee promise. If we do not recover anything for you, you do not owe us an attorney fee.

The personal injury lawyers at Phillips Law Firm have successfully represented injured individuals and their families in Seattle, Tacoma, Vancouver, Bellevue, Everett, Kent, Auburn, Renton, Federal Way, Bellingham, Marysville, Lakewood, Redmond, Shoreline, and throughout the State of Washington. 


Spring should be a time to celebrate warmer temperatures and sunshine, so don’t let seasonal spring hazards such as flooding, storm-related weather, and dangerous driving conditions be a damper.

For most of the country, the snow and ice may be gone, but it’s no less important to stay street smart this spring. Melting snow, sudden downpours, and spring showers can present dangerous driving conditions, as well.

Wet roads can be just as tricky to navigate as icy ones. Additionally, rainy weather can adversely affect driver visibility. Before you hit the roads this spring, look at these tips to help you arrive safely:

  • Replace worn tires. Tires with worn out tread provide less traction on slick streets. Properly inflating your tires will help as well.
  • Clean windows and replace worn wiper blades. Salt and other road residue accumulate over the winter. Your visibility will be greatly improved just by cleaning the glass and removing this residue. Cleaning the inside of the glass also helps the defroster clear your windows faster by reducing moisture buildup. Replacing worn wiper blades with fresh ones will clear your windshield of rain more effectively and improve visibility.
  • Check all lighting. Rain can impact visibility so check headlights, taillights, backup lights, brake lights, parking lights, and turn signals. You will be able to see more clearly and other drivers will be better able to see you.
  • Do not use cruise control during heavy rains or hail. During low traction driving conditions, cruise control can lead to hydroplaning and loss of vehicle control. Also, use of cruise control allows you to move your feet away from the pedals, and disengaging the cruise control in an emergency situation may take too many crucial seconds.

Sometimes Accidents Happen

If, despite your best efforts, you find yourself in a pile up, take pictures of everything. Document the position of your vehicle, the other party’s vehicle and the surrounding areas, and don’t forget to exchange phone numbers. Call law enforcement and file the necessary police reports. Then contact your insurance agent right away to start the claims process, making sure to relay all pertinent information. If you need expert advice on who is responsible for the accident, contact a qualified personal injury attorney, like those at Phillips Law Firm.


State and county regulators have begun reviewing three oil terminal projects that have the potential of bringing millions of gallons of crude oil through the state every day. The Port of Vancouver is the site of the largest of the three proposed undertakings. The $110 million Tesoro Corporation and Savage Company facility could handle as much as 380,000 barrels of crude oil a day.

Westway has its sights set on Grays Harbor, the proposed location of the second project that could handle up to 9.6 million barrels of oil every year. Also, Imperium Renewables has plans for an expansion that would increase its storage capacity by an additional 720,000 barrels.

In response to this proposed increase in crude oil transportation, lawmakers are proposing regulations that would require full disclosure to the public concerning information about the transport of oil by rail. Others want to propose a bill that includes a provision to extend a tax of 5 cents a barrel on oil arriving by rail. This tax would pay for state oil spill response and preparedness.

Already, trains are carrying oil through Spokane, the Tri-cities, along the Columbia River and up the Interstate 5 corridor from the Bakken region of North Dakota that produces a particularly volatile type of crude. Typically, one train has approximately 100 cars, each with the capacity to hold 28,000 gallons of crude.

Growing Safety Concerns

Oil has been transported through Washington by train for years, but with rail traffic increasing over the past few years and even more being proposed, safety concerns have escalated.

A succession of deadly and catastrophic train accidents in the past year involving oil from the Bakken region has elicited concerns about fire and other safety issues. It is estimated that three such trains already pass through Seattle every week.

Spurred into action by these recent tragedies, the Seattle City Council has proposed restricting oil shipments through the city until further safety studies can be conducted. It is also urging the state to temporarily halt any oil-by-rail projects until the dangers can be more fully evaluated.

Accidents that involve trains can result in very serious injury. Add a volatile chemical to that accident and it will certainly be catastrophic. If you or a loved one have been hurt in a train accident, don’t hesitate to call a personal injury attorney immediately.


A traumatic brain injury (TBI) can be a blow, jolt or bump to the head, or a penetrating head injury that disrupts the normal function of the brain; injuries that are commonly seen in car accidents. Such an injury, that takes an instant to sustain, can bring a lifetime of physical, cognitive, and behavioral challenges. Brain injuries do not discriminate. They can affect anyone at any time. In an effort to educate communities on the far-reaching impacts of brain injuries, March has been designated as National Brain Injury Awareness Month.

Facts About Brain Injuries

Every year, 2.4 million people in the United States, including 475,000 children, sustain a TBI. Falls, workplace accidents, assaults can cause TBIs, and car crashes among various other reasons. Seventy-five percent of TBIs reported every year are concussions or other mild forms of traumatic brain injury. However, many TBIs are life altering. Here are some startling statistics about TBIs:

  • 52,000 people will die as a result of a TBI
  • 53 million individuals live with life-long disabilities as a result of TBI
  • TBI is a contributing factor to one-third of all injury-related deaths in the U.S.

Although many, 1.365 million people will be treated in the emergency room and released with a mild TBI, 275,000 victims of TBI will be hospitalized. And just as no two people are exactly alike, the same is true of brain injuries.

For some victims, TBI is the beginning of lifelong disease management. The injury may require access to the complete gamete of medically necessary treatment and community-based programs provided by interdisciplinary teams of specialized clinicians working in accredited programs and various settings, all of which comes at a significant financial cost. Some of these costs include;

  • $8,000 per day is the average cost for hospital-based acute rehab
  • $850-2,500 per day is the cost range for post-acute residential care
  • $600-1,000 per day is the cost range for day treatment programs. This entails four hours of therapy and does not include room/board
  • $76.3 billion in direct medical costs and indirect costs, such as lost productivity annually

How a Personal Injury Attorney Can Help

Every year people suffer debilitating TBI injuries from car accidents that result in enormous medical bills, lost wages, and forever alter the quality of their lives. If you or a loved one is suffering from the result of a TBI, contact an attorney today who can evaluate your case and determine the best course of action to help you recover the compensation that you deserve.


Speed limit signs are used to inform all motorists of the speed that is appropriate for traveling safely on a particular road under favorable conditions. Factors like curves, lanes, and average road traffic are usually considered when determining the speed limit. Yet when weather conditions worsen or in times of excessive traffic, drivers are urged to use common sense and lower their speed as an extra precaution. Unfortunately, not all drivers do so, and as a result, catastrophic and devastating accidents can occur.

This month, Washington drivers who were traveling too fast for the conditions caused 2 separate collisions on Interstate 90. These accidents resulted in five separate injuries.

In the first accident, four people were injured on Saturday, February 8th when the driver of a Toyota Scion lost control of her vehicle and rolled. She was then struck by another car. Both cars were totaled and the four people were rushed to the hospital with injuries, although they were all released later in the evening.

The second accident occurred similarly when the driver of a Honda Civic slid on the highway and was subsequently hit by a Ford 250 pickup. Both accidents occurred near Cle Elum on Interstate 90. Charges are pending in both cases.

Sadly, speeding causes one out of three fatal crashes, resulting in over 13,000 lives lost each year. Statistically, young males between the ages of 15-20 are more likely to be involved in speeding related crashes. Economically, speeding-related crashes cost society over $40 billion a year annually.

Speeding drivers put all Seattle motorists in danger. If a speeding driver injures you or someone you love, it is important to know that you are not alone. You have a right to seek compensation from the “at-fault” driver, and an experienced personal injury lawyer can help you obtain justice after a devastating accident. Injured accident victims may need money to pay for medical bills, rehabilitation expenses, lost wages, and decreased quality of life.

Contact Seattle Car Accident Attorneys

If you are interested in learning more about your legal options, call us at 1-800-708-6000. The Seattle car accident attorneys at Phillips Law Firm are waiting to assist you 24/7, offering a free case evaluation. Remember our no fee promise. If we do not recover anything for you, you do not owe us an attorney fee.

The personal injury lawyers at Phillips Law Firm have successfully represented injured individuals and their families in Seattle, Tacoma, Vancouver, Bellevue, Everett, Kent, Auburn, Renton, Federal Way, Bellingham, Marysville, Lakewood, Redmond, Shoreline, and throughout the State of Washington.