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New Haven Personal Injury Law Blog

Risk-taking drivers undermine the entire point of bike helmets

You wear a bike helmet every single time you get on your bike in New Haven. You know that it helps keep you safe. It protects your skull and brain in the event of a crash. Your parents told you to wear it when you were a child, and you carried that advice with you as you grew up. Now you tell your children the same thing.

Bike helmets do help. You should wear them. So should your kids. Do not doubt that your parents gave you good advice.

Pro teen cyclist dies in tragic accident

Tate Meintjes was living out his own personal dream. At just 19 years old, he was already a professional cyclist, participating in races all over the United States.

Tragically, the teen phenom recently passed away in an accident with a car. He was in California, where he was planning to tackle the Redlands Bicycle Classic. During a pre-ride of the race course, he got cut off by a car. He collided with the vehicle and crews rushed him to the hospital, but he passed away from his injuries.

5 common diseases that doctors miss

When a doctor misses a disease or makes the wrong diagnosis, it can have devastating consequences. Patients may spend months or even years not getting the treatment they need or getting treatment for a disease they do not even have. In some situations, diseases progress during this time so that they can't be cured at all, when early detection would have allowed the patient to have life-saving options.

It's important to understand that doctors are human and they do make mistakes. Never assume that they're always right. Here are five diseases that they often miss:

  1. Lupus: This autoimmune disease leads to swelling and inflammation when the body, rather than attacking invaders like viruses and bacteria, turns on itself. Healthy tissue gets attacked and damaged. Doctors may miss it because it can attack any part of the body, so the symptoms can appear very different from one person to the next.
  2. Celiac disease: If you've heard people say that they're "gluten free," this may mean that they have celiac disease. It makes it so that your body can't properly process the gluten found in many foods -- it comes in rye, barley and wheat. Doctors may miss it because the symptoms include things like constipation, diarrhea, bloating, weight loss and other gastronomical issues that can have many causes.
  3. Cancer: The problem with cancer is that symptoms may not suggest it's cancer when it is internal, rather than external. For instance, a dermatologist may have little trouble identifying skin cancer, but a primary care doctor may think that something like colorectal cancer is intestinal TB or just an ulcer. It can produce the same stomach cramps and other symptoms. The real disease may not show up if doctors do not do a colonoscopy or similar procedure.
  4. Sleep apnea: This is a very dangerous and sometimes fatal sleeping condition that can lead to strokes, heart disease and high blood pressure. Since the symptoms happen while you sleep, people with the disorder often don't know they have it and the main notable symptom for a partner may simply be snoring. It can take doctors far too long to figure out what's going on.
  5. Aneurysms. These are often called "time bombs" because they can quickly become fatal. The speed at which they take lives means that any mistake by a doctor could prove deadly. Many patients don't even make it to the hospital, and those who do need immediate care.

Critical tips for winter cycling

When winter falls and most people hang their bicycles up in the garage, you just throw on another layer and keep going. You love winter cycling. It's beautiful, it's peaceful and it's a unique way to enjoy the outdoors. You know that you're much happier when you can still get outside, rather than feeling shut up in the house until the snow melts. Plus, it keeps you in great shape all year around.

Of course, winter cycling is a different animal than riding during the summer. You have fewer daylight hours. You have to contend with snow, sleet, ice and rain. Many drivers forget that cyclists may still be on the roads. You need to know how to stay safe and ride well this winter. Below are a few critical tips that can help.

Connecticut homeowners have rights regarding noisy neighbors

When you purchase your own property or house, one of the rights you receive as a landowner is the right to quiet enjoyment of your property. In the state of Connecticut, lawmakers take that term more literally than in other states. In fact, Connecticut has statewide laws, as well as local, municipal ordinances, that protect homeowners from noisy neighbors.

Whether you live next to a rental apartment that houses college kids throwing parties or a business that plays music loudly late at night, you have rights as a property owner. In fact, you can take legal action against the noisemakers if they don't respect your right to quiet enjoyment of your property. You shouldn't have to suffer through another noisy, sleepless night. Instead, you should assert your rights and stand up for yourself.

Experts: Drivers' frustration with cyclists is severely misplaced

You cycle to work and back every day, choosing this mode of transportation for many reasons. You like helping to reduce pollution, it helps keep you in shape and you save a lot of money not having to use your own car. It's a personal choice, and it's one you feel passionately about.

Unfortunately, other drivers also seem to feel passionately about your decision, and they're often not on your side. Almost every day you encounter drivers who follow too closely, cut you off and honk their horns. Some make obscene gestures out the windows. As much as you like cycling, you fear that you are eventually going to get into an accident with an irate driver.

Halloween creates unique hazards for people on bikes

For many people, Halloween is one of the most exciting and enjoyable holidays. It doesn't carry the same pressures and stresses that Christmas might, but it still creates a fun atmosphere for children and adults alike. Also unlike Christmas, you can get fully in the spirit and celebrate without spending a lot of money.

For those who enjoy cycling, Halloween can present some unique opportunities, as well as hazards. Biking in the crisp fall air is always enjoyable. The slower travel afforded by a bicycle also makes it easy to appreciate spooky decorations left out by people in your neighborhood.

Tips for safe cycling this autumn

If you're cruising into autumn on your two-wheeler, you want to make sure that you are always proactive about your safety. There are many year-round hazards that exist for bicycling enthusiasts, but autumn poses its own particular safety challenges.

Read on to learn how you can cycle safer this fall here in New Haven.

Accident fear is the No. 1 reason people do not bike more often

While you can pay thousands for high-end bikes, there are low-end and mid-range bikes at affordable prices for almost anyone in the United States. Plus, the used bike market is relatively strong, so people who want to save even more can always find deals.

What this means is that most people have access to bikes if they want them. And many do. Research shows that around 100 million people take their bikes out for at least one ride every year in the United States.

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