Category: Car Accidents

Tingling in Hands After a Car Accident

by John McKiggan

What Does it Mean?

Tingling in the hands is a neurological symptom generally associated with pressure on your nerves. For example, if you cross your legs too long, when you uncross them you may get a numb, tingling, pins and needles sensation. Or when you sleep on your arm and you feel tingling when you move it. 

These are the more common instances of tingling in the hands that people will experience regularly over the course of their lives. However, tingling in the hands can also be caused by trauma and injury as a result of nerve damage. This can be an indication of more serious damage to the nerves rather than merely pressure.

Posted in: Car Accidents

I Hit a Car Pulling Out of a Driveway – Who Is at Fault?

by Mark Raftus

Imagine yourself driving down the street to work on a typical day. Suddenly, a car appears in front of you backing out of a driveway. You react, applying your brakes as hard as you can. Unfortunately, the other car is too close for you to stop in time and you hit the rear of it with a huge thump. You are jerked violently forward. You lose awareness of time for a short period. When you come to you feel dizzy and wonder if you sustained a concussion or suffered whiplash. Your chest hurts but you are glad you wore your seatbelt as without it you could have been sent hurtling through the windshield. 

You have just been in a car accident.

Now, put yourself in the position of the other car’s driver. Imagine you just finished placing your two-year-old daughter in the child safety seat in the back of the car. You pass over her favourite teddy bear which makes her smile. You close the door and hop into the driver’s seat. You shoot a glance at the dashboard clock and breathe a sigh of relief because unlike yesterday you are on time to drop your daughter off at the daycare a few blocks away. You glance at the roadway and all seems clear. You put the car in reverse and start backing out. Suddenly, you hear screeching tires and before you realize what is happening, glass shatters and your car gets pushed sideways. When you gather yourself the first thoughts you have are about your little girl in the back seat. You turn around, see her looking at you and notice she is crying a little but otherwise seems fine. 

Posted in: Car Accidents

Is the Car Making a Left-Hand Turn Always at Fault?

by John McKiggan

The short answer is no. The long answer is that generally speaking left-turning vehicles must yield the right of way to oncoming vehicles. However, that doesn’t mean they are automatically at fault and every accident must be examined on it’s own facts and a determination made as to who “caused” the collision.

There is a common misunderstanding that if you were making a left turn you are automatically at fault for the accident.  However, liability will depend on the right of way, the speed of the vehicles, the duties of each driver, and what a reasonable and prudent driver would have done in the same situation.

The Left-Hand Turn Rules in Nova Scotia

Posted in: Car Accidents

Motor Vehicle Collisions a Leading Cause of Serious Injuries in Nova Scotia

by John McKiggan

In
the early hours of May 26, 2019, a car struck a culvert that left two Nova
Scotia men seriously injured. RCMP police quickly alleged that the driver was
showing signs of alcohol impairment. The passenger of the vehicle was
transported by LifeFlight to Halifax for further medical treatment.

This
unfortunate accident is just one of hundreds of motor vehicle collisions that
happen across Nova Scotia every day.

How Much Are My Injuries Worth?

Posted in: Car Accidents

Vehophobia After a Car Accident

by John McKiggan

Do you
experience fear of driving or get anxious about getting behind the wheel of
your vehicle? Do you have paralysing thoughts of being responsible for an
accident that may cause others injury or loss of life?

An Accident Caused Vehophobia

It was Saturday
morning and “Jim”, had stopped at a stop sign. He was a busy man, but Jim had promised
he would always attend his 6-year-old son’s soccer games. His son sat in the
back seat with a soccer ball in his lap.

Posted in: Car Accidents

Tough News Decision from the Nova Scotia Court of Appeal Affecting Car Crash Injury Victims

by Mark Raftus

Seriously injured car crash victims will now receive less money in their pockets after trial for loss of future income damages claims given the December 10, 2018 Nova Scotia Court of Appeal decision in Sparks v Holland.

In the past, certain types of income replacement benefits received by an injured Plaintiff were not deducted from a Plaintiff’s award for loss of future income. These were referred to as collateral benefits.

In the past, Canada Pension Plan Disability [CPPd] benefits were not deducted from future income loss awards. Unfortunately, the highest Court in Nova Scotia has ruled that future CPPd are not a collateral benefit and are indeed deductible from loss of future earning capacity and loss of future income damages awards made at Trial.

Posted in: Car Accidents

Understanding Whiplash in Nova Scotia Car Accidents

by John McKiggan

No matter how severe a car accident may seem at first, suffering whiplash and whiplash associated disorders (WAD) can quickly escalate what appears at first to be a minor incident into a serious medical emergency. “Whiplash” is the common term for an injury resulting from an abrupt back-and-forth flexing of the neck.

This can cause very painful and disruptive symptoms that can greatly affect your quality of life, your ability to provide an income for yourself and your family, and even lead to depression and social isolation in the most extreme cases. No one should ever have to live with this kind of pain and suffering—especially when it is caused directly by someone else’s actions.

If you have been involved in a car accident caused by another person’s negligent or distracted driving and have suffered whiplash or whiplash associated disorders, you have the legal right to make a claim for compensation. No matter how minor your injuries may appear to be, if you were not at fault the simple fact of being injured entitles you to recover damages from the responsible party.

“Oh No – Is that Snow?!” – Safe Driving Tips for the Winter Season

by Mark Raftus

November 16th marked the first substantial winter snow fall in the Halifax area for the 2018 winter season.  I awoke, looked out my front window and sadly noted snow covered streets with heavy, wet snowflakes falling. The radio forecast called for the snow to turn into ice pellets and later into rain. A very greasy day awaited and I suspected the roads would be very slippery.

As I set out for the drive to the office I prepared mentally for the trek ahead reminding myself to drive cautiously,  approach intersections a bit slower than normal, pump my brakes if I started to slide and to make sure I looked twice at every car around me before proceeding into an intersection.

I still knew, however, that despite all of my caution it was going to be “the other guy” I had to be mindful of… the guy who would make no mental driving precautions, who would approach every intersection as if the pavement was bare, who would tailgate me and perhaps even try to pass me on a two lane street if he perceived I was driving too slowly.

Autumn Changes – Advanced Pedestrian Lights and the new Traffic Safety Act

by Mark Raftus

As summer moves into fall, many seasonal changes take place. Children return to school, days are not as warm or long, leaves change color and we prepare for the long winter ahead.

Change is a constant and quite often, is for the good. The positive aspect of change can be seen in recent developments implemented by HRM and the Provincial government aimed at protecting pedestrians and motorists in Nova Scotia.

HRM statistics reveal in the first eight months of 2018 there were 120 vehicle-pedestrian collisions in HRM with 61 percent of them happening in a crosswalk. In an effort to improve safety for these pedestrians, HRM has installed what they refer to as “advanced pedestrian lights” at six high-pedestrian traffic intersections in the City – five in Halifax and one in Dartmouth.
Allowing Pedestrians a Head Start
These new lights came into effect on Thursday, October 11, 2018. How they work is the green pedestrian “walking man” signal comes on for several seconds before the green traffic light changes permitting vehicle traffic to proceed ahead through an intersection or turn. In this way, pedestrians are given a head start to proceed forward into the crosswalk and establish their presence. Vehicle drivers will see the pedestrians more readily and allow them to complete their right-of-way crossing. HRM advises they will monitor this initiative and if it works to reduce collisions HRM will add more of these advanced pedestrian lights at other intersections in the City.

Good news from the Supreme Court of Canada for injured victims of underinsured drivers

by Mark Raftus

What is SEF44 coverage?

In an article and video on the McKiggan Hebert website John McKiggan discussed how the SEF44 Family Protection Endorsement works. But a recent decision from the Supreme Court of Canada has made some important rulings that impact how SEF44 coverage can be used to protect you and your family.

Sabean v Portage Mutual Insurance Company