Orlando personal injury attorney James O. Cunningham would like to remind readers to exercise extra care while driving during the upcoming holiday season and heed the advice given recently by two Orlando firefighter paramedics. Paramedics Joe McCluan and Scott Neusch recently presented a Stay Alive From Education (SAFE) program to Air Force cadets, where they showed graphic photos and grisly videos from auto accidents and had cadets participate in role-playing exercises to illustrate the poor choices that some drivers make that lead to accidents.
"We didn’t travel to Colorado to give you a finger-pointing, condescending lecture to tell you guys how to live your life," McCluan said. "What Scott and I want to do for you today, is show you the consequences of your actions should you decide to make those poor choices, such as not wearing your seatbelt or using drugs or alcohol."
Someone is killed in an auto accident every twelve minutes in the U.S., and these Orlando paramedics have seen their share of fatalities while serving the people of Central Florida.
"Statistics tell us that 1 in 100 people die of trauma," McCluan said. "Most of the time, when we’re dealing with traumatic injuries, drugs and alcohol play a part, but more often than not, when Scott and I drag dead bodies out of cars, it’s simple: They don’t have seat belts on."
Neusch said airbags are only effective at protecting drivers in a head-on collision and are designed to work in tandem with seatbelts.
"Anywhere in your car where you see an airbag, you’re going to see the letters SRS that stand for Supplemental Restraining System," Neusch said. "That means your airbag is only there as a supplement to your primary restraint, which is your seatbelt."
McCluan told cadets that car accident victims are 25 times more likely to suffer fatal injuries if they are ejected from a vehicle.
"The only thing that’s going to keep you from being ejected is a seatbelt," McCluan said. "Newton’s Law of Inertia, which states any objects that are not moving will remain motionless, unless you apply a force on them, comes in to play every single day of your life. This means anything not secure in your car will fly forward upon impact."
However, the paramedics were quick to point out that seat belts are only part of the solution for preventing auto accident deaths and injuries. He told cadets that avoiding reckless behavior is the most important factor.
"Common sense tells you not to drink and drive," McCluan said. "It tells you to look out for your fellow Airmen and take that responsibility seriously. It tells you to put a seatbelt on for a reason and it certainly tells you that there is no text message, no tweet, no Facebook update or email that is worth your life or somebody else’s."
Mr. Cunningham and other Orlando car accident injury lawyers want everyone to have a safe, happy and joyous holiday season and look out for friends and relatives who have had a bit too much to drink by offering to drive them home. He would also like to remind readers to wear their seat belts and turn their cell phones off or ignore them while driving. For more information about the SAFE driving program, please visit http://www.safeprogram.com/. Happy (and Safe) Holidays, everyone!
James O. Cunningham
Since 1977, personal injury lawyer James Cunningham has provided effective legal advocacy to people who are injured through the negligent actions of another person or entity throughout the Central Florida area. He fights to obtain recoveries for his clients’ physical and emotional pain and suffering and pursues his clients’ personal injury cases with a commitment to excellence and impeccable preparation.
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