Tag Archives: Law Times

Safe streets concept could reduce fatalities

As seen on AdvocateDaily.com

Streets designed to take every mode of transportation into account – dubbed complete streets – are safer for the drivers, cyclists and pedestrians travelling on them, Toronto critical injury lawyer Patrick Brown says in Law Times.

In the article, Brown discusses the 2012 cycling death review and the 2012 pedestrian death review, and the coroner’s office move to call for the adoption of complete streets.

“The complete streets concept has been around for a while,” Brown says in Law Times.

“It has been adopted in various jurisdictions in the U.S. Put simply, it provides that anyone involved in the construction, building, maintenance or design of any type of roads provide equal access and equal consideration for all users, especially in urban centres. Complete streets are designed to give cyclists and pedestrians their own space so they can avoid contact.”

The cycling death review examined all of the 129 accidental cycling deaths that occurred in Ontario between Jan. 1, 2006, and Dec. 31, 2010, the article says, while the pedestrian death review examined 95 cases of preventable pedestrian collisions in 2010, including the 23 deaths that occurred in January of that year.

The Ministry of Transportation is currently in the process of developing a cycling strategy and is moving forward with implementing the coroner’s recommendations, the report says.

“We are hoping for a complete streets policy statement directing the road authorities to adopt the concept,” Brown, partner with McLeish Orlando LLP, says in the article.

“There is no doubt in my mind that if they do, we will have the safest roads in North America and a substantial reduction in fatalities.”

 

Researching a Google Reader replacement

As seen on AdvocateDaily.com

 

As Google Reader prepares to retire as of July 1, lawyers who use the service to track news in their practice areas are trying new tools, like Flipboard’s social news magazine, recently tested by Toronto critical injury lawyer Rikin Morzaria for a Law Times article on the topic.

“I loved it as a recreational reading tool. It’s somewhat limited using it as a tool to keep up to date with cases and other legal research,” Morzaria, partner with McLeish Orlando LLP, says in the article.

“The visual display is beautiful and it makes it a pleasant experience to read through decisions but it doesn’t let you see at a glance which decisions are new, which ones you’ve already started reading, and which ones you’ve already read.

“I’ve tried Netvibes, too, which is pretty comparable to Google Reader and you can use it offline.”

Google announced its decision to shut down the popular RSS feed reader in March, citing declining users, Law Times reports.

 

Negligent drivers can still pursue claims against a road authority, says decision

As seen on AdvocateDaily.com

 

A recent case points out very clearly that there is not an absolute bar when it comes to whether a negligent driver can still pursue a negligence claim against a road authority, Toronto critical injury lawyer Dale Orlando says in Law Times.

Deering v. Scugog (Township), says the article, involves a 2004 motor vehicle accident that left two teenage sisters quadriplegics, with the trial judge finding the defendant municipality to be two-thirds liable with the drive responsible for the remainder. The Ontario Court of Appeal dismissed an appeal last year, and the Supreme Court of Canada denied leave to appeal in December.

As all avenues of appeal have now been exhausted in the case, says Law Times, the Superior Court’s decision is the latest word on the duty of municipalities to keep roads in a reasonable state of repair and the “expected driving capability of the ordinary driver.”

Whether a negligent driver can still pursue a negligence claim, says Orlando, partner with McLeish Orlando LLP who represented the younger sister, “is a question of apportionment after objective analysis of the state of non-repair of the road.”

“Shannon Deering was admittedly negligent. She was over the speed limit on an unfamiliar, hilly road and, accordingly, contributed to the happening of the accident. But that is the second question. The first is: On an objective analysis of the test, did the road represent an unreasonable risk of harm to an ordinary, average user, not to a negligent driver? This includes drivers who are not super drivers,” he says.

Orlando also says he believes that the Deering decision doesn’t create any new tests but reinforces previous decisions. “Municipalities are not held to a standard to make the road safe for negligent drivers. That’s not what the case means,” he explains.

No need for review of catastrophic provisions

An auto insurance industry review of catastrophic impairment provisions is unnecessary at this time, Toronto critical injury lawyer Dale Orlando says in Law Times.

The provincial government has reopened renewed consideration of the provisions by starting stakeholder consultations not restricted to medical experts as was the case with last year’s review by the Financial Services Commission of Ontario, the article says.

“Where’s the fire?” Orlando, partner with McLeish Orlando LLP, asks in the report.

“They’re searching for a solution to a problem that simply doesn’t exist. Around one per cent of claims are deemed catastrophic. On a claim-by-claim basis, it’s a lot of money, but in the scheme of things, there’s no evidence that there’s been an upswing in costs.”

The Law Times article also discusses an Ontario Trial Lawyers Association advisory sent out in March that alleged the Insurance Bureau of Canada is misinforming officials about insurance premiums, claims costs, and profits.

The Insurance Bureau of Canada responded by publishing an actuarial analysis from JF Cheng and Partners on March 28, and then a KPMG LLP-authored analysis of Ontario private passenger automobile insurance results for 2008-12, the article says.

Source: AdvocateDaily.com