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South Dakota Personal Injury Law Blog

Motorcyclists at rally get in multiple accidents

South Dakota is a popular rallying place for many kinds of groups. It is a destination of choice for people wanting to attend conferences, festivals and motorcycle events like the world-famous Sturgis Motorcycle Rally. Of course, the Sturgis event has its share of motorcycle accidents each year. Those accidents, in turn, can result in personal injuries that range from minor to life-threatening.

At this year's Sturgis Motorcycle Rally, at least 10 people have been injured in accidents, with some of those accidents involving other types of vehicles. For example, a motorcycle was going southbound on South Dakota Highway 79 when, all of a sudden, a 2011 Ford Escape, which was going northbound at the time, turned directly in front of the motorcycle. The driver of the motorcycle, who was 86 years old, suffered minor injuries. He had been wearing a helmet at the time of the accident. The driver and passenger of the Ford Escape, who had both been wearing seat belts, were not injured.

Has paraplegia left your life permanently changed?

The idea of becoming paralyzed may be one that leaves many people feeling lucky that they have all of their abilities. However, a serious accident could occur at any time that leaves an unsuspecting individual with this type of life-changing injury. Though individuals with paraplegia can still live full lives, it can take time to make such a serious adjustment.

Unfortunately, a reckless or negligent driver may have caused an accident that left you with this type of injury. In fact, accidents are the leading cause of spinal cord injuries that lead to paraplegia and other forms of paralysis. What does this mean for you?

Possession of drugs in South Dakota

  • Did you know that there are actually three different ways you can be charged with drug possession in South Dakota? One of those ways is particularly unique to the state -- which may be why it ties (along with Wyoming and South Carolina) for the highest number of drug arrests in the nation.

Most people are familiar with the first way you can end up with a drug charge: You get caught with actual drugs in your possession. South Dakota is notoriously rough on drug offenders. Even a small amount of marijuana can lead to a $2,000 fine and a year in jail.

Constructive possession is another route that prosecutors can use to convict people of drug possession. In essence, constructive possession is the charge that law enforcement will use when they aren't sure whose drugs they just found in a home or car -- so they simply charge everybody who could have possibly had access and control of those drugs. That means if your college roomie hides his pot stash in the common bathroom you share, you can both be arrested.

Semitruck hits car head-on

The middle of summer sees cars and trucks going to many different destinations on South Dakota roads. Most of them, one hopes, pay attention to all of the things that can keep themselves and others safe on the roads, like adhering to speed limits and watching where they're going, However, some drivers are not careful, and car accidents and truck accidents result.

A truck accident occurred on U.S. Highway 83 at about 7:00 p.m. one recent evening. A semitruck driver, who was driving northbound close to Herreid, tried to pass another vehicle. When he did, he collided head-on with a Buick LaCrosse, which was in the southbound lane at the time.

Semi and National Guard trucks collide

Any automotive accident that South Dakota residents are in is unfortunate and can result in both personal injuries and damages to property, including to the vehicles involved in the accident. Truck accidents, due to the sheer size, weight, and power of the vehicles involved, can be devastating to people and property.

That was the case recently in South Dakota when a semitruck that was carrying a volatile load of liquid carbon dioxide was in a calamitous crash with a National Guard vehicle. The crash happened north of Mitchell, at the intersection of National Guard Road and Highway 57 around 7:30 a.m. on June 19. Authorities, including the South Dakota Highway Patrol, arrived on the scene shortly thereafter.

Study sheds new light on damage from mild TBIs

A mild traumatic brain injury (TBI) may be far more serious than many people -- including doctors -- once realized. In addition, the lack of follow-up care for patients with mild TBIs may be a big problem and lead to long-term functional limitations.

A new study by the Medical College of Wisconsin in Milwaukee looked at the functional limitations of a number of trauma patients -- 1,154 with mild TBIs and 299 without head trauma. While the two groups reported similar statistics regarding their functional limitations just two weeks after being injured, that picture changed a year later. By the one-year mark, 53% of patients who had suffered mild TBIs still had significant limitations. Meanwhile, only 38% of patients with orthopedic injuries and no head trauma reported the same.

The high cost of recovering from a spinal cord injury

Perhaps you knew the severity of your injury from the moment it happened, or you may have suspected how bad it was based on the worried looks on the faces of the medical team in the emergency room. When you finally received the confirmed diagnosis that you had suffered a spinal cord injury, the world as you knew it ended, and a new reality took its place.

You can consider yourself fortunate that you live in a time of tremendous medical and scientific advances. Those who suffer spinal cord injuries can still have great hope of leading productive and fulfilling lives. However, you have a long way to go and a great deal to prepare for. The first step is understanding the kinds of treatments you may face and learning as much as you can about your medical, personal and legal options.

A Gayville crash injures a recent high school graduate, 2 others

A recent Vermillion High School (VHS) graduate, another area resident and a 3-year-old were seriously injured when their vehicle was struck by a semi-truck on the afternoon of May 13. The incident occurred along Highway 50 just outside of Gayville, a city that's located 68 miles to the southeast of Sioux Falls.

The Yankton County Sheriff's Office (YCSO) first started receiving calls about an accident that had occurred nearby the intersection of Highway 50 and 451st Avenue early that afternoon. When they arrived at the crash scene, they found a mangled sedan and an 18-wheeler.

Don't fall victim to a left-turn accident on your motorcycle

From the very first time that you get on your motorcycle, you understand the danger that other drivers pose. When someone tailgates you, you notice it instantly. When someone cuts you off, you get that surge of adrenaline.

It becomes clear to you that one mistake by someone else is all that it takes. You could avoid all mistakes and ride your bike perfectly, but that doesn't mean you won't crash. Other drivers have some say in your safety. You can't trust them not to make mistakes, so that means there is always an accident risk.

How to spot elder abuse in nursing homes

We all want what's best for our loved ones as they age. Sometime, that involves moving them to a place where they can have frequent and individualized medical attention. When we're looking for nursing homes, we always search for one that will provide the best comfort and suit our loved one's needs.

But the elderly can be vulnerable. If they're not getting the care they need, that's a problem. Even worse, they could be facing neglect or abuse. It's important to know the signs of abuse in nursing home so you can keep your loved ones safe.

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