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Tourist season is kicking into full gear. If you are in the Carolinas, chances are you may be heading to the beach for your much deserved vacation. No one ever wants to get sick or hurt; especially on a trip.  Knowing how to avoid common vacation injuries and accidents can help ensure that you and your family have a wonderful time from beginning to end. Keep you and your family safe and happy by protecting yourselves from the most common accident and injuries that occur during family vacations.

  1. Allergies

You may know what you are allergic to in your own backyard, but flora and fauna that you aren’t used to can make you a victim of hay fever, hives and plenty of other issues. Nobody wants to deal with allergies while on vacation. Before you take a trip out of your home city, research your destination and check out the allergy reports for where you are heading.  Knowing what you may encounter will help you know what to expect before you get there.

Once you arrive at your destination, pay attention to the weather reports. Chances are high that the forecaster will give you the expected pollen or other allergen count for the day. If the allergen or pollen count is going to be high, stay indoors until late afternoon or evening. Change your clothes when you come in from outdoors, and wipe your skin off with a baby wipe or wet towel. This will help get the pollen off of your body which may prevent your allergies from flairing up.

  1. Car, Golf Cart and Bicycle Crashes

Driving on two or four wheels can be dangerous. Driving becomes even more dangerous when you are cruising along unfamiliar roads. Locals will drive the way they feel comfortable driving, and tourists will often drive in a hurried, rushed or distracted fashion. Often, these two driving styles don’t match up and can lead to car accidents. If you are driving through unfamiliar territory, do not exceed the speed limit and be sure that you understand how to get where you are going before you set off on your journey.

If you are riding a bicycle through a tourist area, make sure you are wearing a helmet. Any bike rental stand or company should have them available for your use. If you are driving an unfamiliar vehicle, get to know the controls before you put it in drive and hit the accelerator.

Similar to bikes, most people consider golf carts to be relatively safe, it’s important to remember that they are still vehicles and that accidents do happen. You can have a lot of fun on a golf cart, but you can also end up seriously injured or injuring someone else if you don’t act responsibly.

Whether you are driving your golf cart on a city street or riding a bicycle down the side of the road, you are considered to be operating a vehicle. Golf carts and bicycles are often subject to the same traffic laws as typical passenger motor vehicles.  Make sure you know and obey the laws at all times! Say no to reckless driving, tailgating, speeding and operating ANY vehicle if you are under the influence of alcohol or drugs.

 

  1. Swimming Accidents

Swimming is a fantastic part of summer. Whether you are in a hotel pool or the calming waves of the ocean, swimming accidents can happen in a split second. If you are a parent, keep an eye on your children at all times. If you are swimming in natural waters, heed any warning signs and obey the lifeguards at all times.

If you aren’t a strong swimmer, wear a life vest. Your children should wear safety items like inner tube rings, arm floats or life vests. These things may inhibit your ability to actually swim in the water, but they can prevent you from drowning which is definitely more important.

  1. Food Poisoning

Some may find it surprising that food poisoning is a main cause of injury and illness during vacation. It’s completely normal to want to try a bit of the local cuisine if you are in a new place, but ask for a few tips before you do. The locals can tell you what restaurants are worth visiting and which are best to avoid. Also, if you decide to cookout, follow food safety rules to ensure that you don’t make yourself or your family ill.

  1. Sports Injuries

Sports related injuries while on vacation are all too common. Who hasn’t enjoyed football or volleyball on the beach before?  If you decide to be active and play a game, ride a jet ski or jump in the hotel pool, make sure you are doing so with safety in mind.  

Before you participate in any kind of physical activity, take a moment to stretch and warm up your muscles, especially if you aren’t quite used to exercise. This can be really important when you are traveling to warmer climates and haven’t been able to get outside at home in the recent weeks before your trip. Also, know the rules of the game you are going to play and, if you are riding on any type of machinery or recreational vehicle, ask the rental agency or owner about safety rules and requirements before you hop on board. It is also the best practice to avoid mixing alcohol and athletic activities

If you or a member of your party gets ill or is injured on vacation, stay as calm as possible. If the issue is a minor one, take care of it and go about enjoying your vacation. If the injury or illness is severe, stay calm and seek emergency medical assistance as soon as possible.

Speak with a Carolina Injury Attorney Today

If you are injured in Charlotte or elsewhere in the Carolinas — whether you are visiting or a resident, know your rights and your options! If your injury was caused by someone else’s negligence, call our office and schedule a free case evaluation. We will review the circumstances of your injury and advise you of your options and how we may be able to help.  We wish you a safe and fun time during your travels.

Golf Cart Safety Tips header

The warmer weather is upon us, meaning people, if they haven’t already, will be dusting off their golf carts and hitting the links.  Depending on where you live and where you are driving, golf carts may be able to lawfully driven on city streets, so expect to see more this time of year.

While most people consider golf carts to be relatively safe, it’s important to remember that they are still vehicles and that accidents do happen. You can have a lot of fun on a golf cart, but you can also end up seriously injured or injuring someone else if you don’t behave responsibly. We’ve compiled a list of the top golf cart safety tips in order to help keep you and others on the road safe.

1. Be Responsible

Anyone in your golf cart should keep their arms and legs inside the vehicle at all times. If you’ve ever been to an amusement park, you’ve probably heard the announcement, “Please keep your arms and legs inside the train (car, vehicle, etc.) until it comes to a complete stop.” The same is true of golf carts. If the cart is moving, all of your limbs should be inside.

2. Limit Passengers

Golf carts are made for a certain number of passengers. There should never be more people in your cart than there are seats for. This means that if you have a cart built for two, you only have one passenger while you are driving.

3. Obey Traffic Laws

When you are driving your golf cart on a city street, you are considered to be operating a vehicle. The golf cart is subject to the same traffic laws as a typical passenger car. Obey the laws at all times. This means no reckless driving, no tailgating and definitely no speeding.

4. Don’t Get Distracted

Distracted driving is an all too frequent cause of motor vehicle accidents. It can be easy to check your phone or send a text while operating your golf cart, believing that you couldn’t possibly hurt anyone because you are traveling at such low speeds. The truth is that you are still in a powerful machine. You need to keep your focus on the road ahead of you.

5. Use Platforms Properly

If you have a golf cart equipped with platforms in the back, sides or front, remember that these aren’t for extra passengers. These platforms are for transporting things like golf bags and shopping packages. Don’t drive your cart with anyone standing or sitting on these platforms.

6. Avoid Drinking and Driving

It’s not unusual for people to consume a few adult beverages while playing golf or spending a relaxing afternoon tooling around town. If you stop off to have a drink, don’t operate your cart. Not only can you be arrested for drunk driving, you could cause an injury accident that you will be forced to live with for the rest of your life.

7. Take It Easy on Turns

Left hand turns are more hazardous than people believe. You stand at risk of cutting someone off if you don’t check your blind spots. No matter which way you are turning, make sure you are using hand signals, especially if your vehicle isn’t equipped with turning lights. Take a look over both shoulders before you turn and always yield to oncoming traffic.

8. Reduce Speeds

Pay attention to the conditions of the road. Driving at top speed may be safe on a smooth stretch of roadway, but can be inappropriate on gravel or a road with multiple curves and sharp bends. Drive at speeds that are right for the conditions, not only of the road you are on but for the weather as well.

9. Starts and Stops

Don’t start, speed up or stop suddenly. Driving in a jerky motion is hazardous for your passengers. If you are driving on a neighborhood street, it is also dangerous for the people sharing the road with you. Remember, you are driving a vehicle. Assuming that you operate your car safely, you should be operating your golf cart in the same manner.

10. Keep Your Keys

If you leave your golf cart, make sure to take your keys with you. You should also have set the parking brake before you exit the cart and walk away. You don’t want a child or an unlicensed driving to see the keys and think it would be fun to take your cart for a joy ride. You also don’t want to risk your cart rolling backwards and striking a vehicle, pedestrian or other object

11. Watch Out For Inclement Weather

Keep an eye on the weather before you decide to head out in your cart. Golf carts are vulnerable to lightning strikes, so care should be taken not to operate them in thunderstorms. If you run into dangerous weather that you didn’t know was coming, do your best to pull over and get to safety.

12. Yield to Pedestrians

When you are operating your golf cart, always yield to pedestrians. That means even if someone is walking slowly in front of you on a trail or on a cart path on the course, yield to them. Pedestrians have the right of way in almost every, if not all, situations. If you strike a pedestrian with your golf cart, you could be criminally ot civilly liable, so watch out for people.

Golf Cart Safety Tips

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Golf carts are a great way to get around the course and they are a fantastic option for people who live in golf cart friendly neighborhoods and towns. If you have a golf cart and plan on bringing it out soon, keep these safety tips in mind.

If you do happen to be involved in a golf cart accident in Charlotte or elsewhere that was caused by someone else, you may be entitled to compensation for injuries and more. Reach out to our office to schedule a free case evaluation and learn more about your legal rights and options. Our experienced team is here for you and we will work tirelessly to represent you zealously so you can get the compensation that you are entitled to under the law.

In what could only be called an unusual accident, a woman in California succumbed to injuries after falling from a golf cart. The cart did not roll onto the woman, nor was she thrown from a speeding cart. Instead, she fell from the cart and landed on two wine glasses. Her injuries were caused by the broken pieces of those glasses.

Even though the accident was unusual, it brings to light the importance of golf cart safety. The driver in this incident was intoxicated, and the accident occurred on private property. People need to be aware of golf cart safety whether they are driving through town, on the golf course or even over their own property.

1. Inspection

Inspect the golf cart before it is driven — every time. Use the operator’s checklist and go over your vehicle before you or anyone else climbs aboard. Make sure your tires are properly inflated, ensure that the steering wheel is functioning properly, and make sure the brakes are working as they should.

2. Watch Your Speed

Golf carts don’t normally travel at high rates of speed, but you can drive one too fast for ground conditions. For example, you will want to drive slower over loose gravel than you would on a smooth, paved surface. Knowing the limitations of your cart can help you judge the proper speed if one is not posted.

3. Buckle Up

Each person in the golf cart should be wearing a seat belt. Seat belts should be buckled before the cart starts moving and stay buckled until the cart has been parked. Additionally, each person in the cart should keep all of their limbs inside the vehicle while it is moving.

4. Pedestrians

Remember that pedestrians always have the right of way when it comes to encounters with golf carts. If you are operating where pedestrians are commonly seen, stay aware of them. Taking your eyes off of the path ahead can result in disaster. Be especially vigilant in areas where children may be present, as they don’t always look before they run onto paths or roadways.

5. Intoxicated Operation

It’s not unusual for people to have a few drinks on the golf course or while tooling about town. It is illegal to operate a golf cart under the influence of alcohol and dangerous as well. If you have been drinking, find someone in your party who is sober and ask them to drive. You can easily end up with a DUI charge or, at worst, cause an accident that results in injury if you choose to drive drunk.

Golf cart accidents can range from minor to incredibly serious. If you have been involved in a golf cart accident and need legal assistance, reach out to our team. We will review your case at no cost to you and advise you of your options. Call now to schedule your free case evaluation.

Whether you will be playing a round of golf or tooling around town, you may find yourself in a golf cart this year. The warm weather brings lots of people, including many tourists out to the beautiful golf courses in our communities. Knowing how to safely operate a golf cart can help prevent injury to yourself and others.

1. Be Courteous

Don’t drive recklessly. If you are driving on a course, be sure to obey the rules set forth for golf carts. If you are driving on the road, remember that you are in a vehicle and must abide by the same laws as any other driver.

2. Drive Sober

Do not drink and drive. It applies to vehicles, boats and even golf carts. If you will be the one in charge of driving, stay away from alcohol. In addition, you should stay away from any type of substance that could impair your ability to drive safely, including some prescription medications.

3. Distracted Driving

Avoid distractions when you are driving. If you are behind the wheel, your full concentration should be on the road or trail ahead.

4. Stay Inside

Make sure that you and any passenger in your cart keeps all body parts inside of the cart at all times. Hands and feet should stay where they belong.

5. Use Hand Signals

The turn signals on golf carts can be small and difficult to see. Use hand signals to tell other drivers and pedestrians when you intend to turn.

6. Turn Your Head

Don’t rely on not having seen anything around you just before you decide to change direction. Turn your head and check both sides of the cart as well as its rear. Only when you have looked to make sure that the way is clear should you change your direction of travel.

7. Slow Down

If you are turning sharply, be sure to slow down. Golf carts tip over easily. Taking a turn too quickly can cause your cart to tip onto its side.

8. Watch Your Speed

Golf carts move slowly when compared to traditional vehicles, making drivers less likely to slow down for varying road and trail conditions. Remember to slow your speed on hills and in areas where pedestrians are likely to be present.

9. Take the Keys

If you stop and exit your cart, take the keys with you. This will make it more difficult for anyone to take the cart.

10. Pay Attention to the Weather

A golf cart with a top will protect you from the rain, but it won’t protect you from lightning. If the weather takes a turn for the worse, take the cart back to where it came from and park it.

Golf cart accidents can be serious. If you are involved in a golf cart accident, reach out to our experienced personal injury attorneys for a free case evaluation. We will review the details of your accident and advise you of your legal options. Call today to schedule your free consultation.

Golf carts are one of the best ways to get around Charlotte, especially in the suburbs. They are usually electric, requiring zero gas. And gas-powered models are pretty fuel-efficient, making them a cheap form of transportation. They don’t require the same maintenance of a car, and they are often safer. However, there are many dangers associated with golf carts, and these risks should not be overlooked.

Golf cart accidents occur in Charlotte and the rest of the state nearly every day, especially during the warm months. More often than not, negligence and recklessness lead to these wrecks, and children are the most common victim. At high speeds, golf carts can tip, and riders can fall out. Both on and off the links, golf carts can be highly dangerous. Sharp turns and other factors can lead to disaster. Learn more about golf cart accidents in Charlotte, and how you can easily prevent them:

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Imagine finally being able to take a dream vacation with your family. You anticipate your trip for weeks ahead of time, looking forward to the opportunity to spend much needed time together. Chances are that is what Julie Mall was looking forward to, right up until a situation during her vacation spiraled out of control. Mall tells one story and officers tell another.

According to Mall, she and her family were vacationing on Bald Head Island where golf carts replace vehicles at every turn. She and her husband decided to permit their 11-year-old son to drive a golf cart, despite knowing that the legal age to drive one is 16.

It was soon that police in their own golf cart pulled up behind them with flashing lights. Shortly after the initial stop, two more police vehicles arrived. Having been told to wait, Mall asked her husband to return to their cottage for bug repellent. One of the officers told her to move her golf cart because it was blocking the road, even though the cart was no longer there. The officer then lunged at her, twisting her arm behind her back.

The police have declined to make any statements regarding the incident, but their version is clearly detailed in an official report. Officer James Hunter wrote that as he approached the golf cart, he observed both adults to be intoxicated. He also wrote that Mall was obstinate and agitated. Hunter wrote that Mall repeatedly stated, “Well, just cite me.”

Regardless of which version is true, Mall was arrested and transported to the mainland via ferry. She was charged with resisting a public officer, intoxicated and disruptive, and misdemeanor child abuse. She was bonded out of jail by her husband. Mall’s charges were eventually dismissed as Officer Hunter failed to appear in court to testify.

While this story is not that of a typical situation, do remember that you must be 16-years old with a valid driver’s license to operate a golf cart in North Carolina. If you have been involved in a golf cart accident in Charlotte, you need an experienced attorney like Auger & Auger Law on your side. Call today for a free case evaluation.

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pinehurst golf courseWhen it comes to golfing, North Carolina has a rich history. From Jack Nicklaus to Payne Stewart, dozens of the biggest names in professional golf have played on our state’s fairways. While many people across the country, golf enthusiasts or not, have heard of Pinehurst and “the Sandhills” region, there are dozens of other terrific courses in the state. If you are looking for an amazing round of golf on a new-to-you green, here are some of the best of the best in the state.

1. Pinehurst

It may be well known, but that doesn’t mean we can leave it off of our list. Pinehurst is ranked 15th in the world by Golf Magazine. The course was privy to a major restoration in 2011. Wider fairways, sandy waste areas and natural bunker edges make this course a must-play.

2. Pine Needles Lodge and Golf Club

Golf Magazine has ranked this course as number two on its list of Best Public Courses in North Carolina. When you visit Pine Needles, it’s easy to see why. Amazing landscapes and obstacles that make play a challenge without being too tough have made this course a favorite among locals and traveling enthusiasts alike.

3. Linville Golf Club

It can be difficult to find a mountain course that is open to the public. That is part of what draws crowds to this popular course in the Western Carolina mountains. Rolling fairways, natural contours and a babbling creek are just some of the amenities found at Linville Golf Club.

4. Tobacco Road

You can find Tobacco Road in Sanford. It is a one-of-a-kind course created by the late Mike Strantz. Critics of the course often complain of many blind spots and some odd greens, but players appreciate the artistry of the architecture. It may not be the course for you, but you’ve got to play it at least once.

5. The Others

There are dozens of course in the state, not all of which make Top 10 lists, but each that has its own unique reasons for drawing players. Some of the best of the rest include Leopard’s Chase, Mid Pines, Duke University Golf Club and Sequoyah National Golf Club.

If you decide to visit any of these courses, we know that you will have a fantastic day on the fairway. While you are playing, be sure to keep your wits about you. Golf injuries can be problematic.

Golf cart injuries in North Carolina can be very serious. If you are injured in a golf car accident, call our office. We will provide you with a free case evaluation and advise you of your options. Call now.

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Golf and danger. Those two words rarely go together in the minds of players or spectators. Golf is widely seen as one of the safest sports people can play. After all, what can be dangerous about walking thousands of feet chasing after a ball for an afternoon?

Truth be told, you may not be at high risk of a fracture or concussion during a round of golf, but there are risks involved with the game. Read on to find out how to protect yourself on the green, no matter your age.

Stretch

Like any prolonged physical activity, a good stretch should precede a game of golf. You will be using muscles in your neck, arms, core and legs that you may not be used to using frequently. Stretch your limbs, bend at the waist a few times, and take a couple of practice swings.

Sunscreen

Few people want to wear long sleeves and pants on a beautiful day, but if you don’t, you are at risk for a fairly serious sunburn. Be sure to slather on the sunscreen and reapply it every two hours. Wear a hat that covers the top of your head. A visor will shield your face, but it won’t protect your head from the sun’s rays.

Pay Attention

Don’t get so caught up in your game that you lose track of your surroundings. Many injuries have occurred because someone wandered through someone else’s game or didn’t pay attention when someone yelled out “Fore”. When you aren’t aware of what is going on around you, you are at risk of being struck by a ball or, worse yet, an errant nine iron.

Weather

The weather can do more than ruin your afternoon. Lightning is a very real danger to anyone holding a metal rod in the air. Think about this when the storms begin and you want to get in just one more hole. If you are in the middle of the course, look for the nearest bathroom or designated lightning shelter. Do not stand under the trees.

Golf Carts

Golf carts should only be driven by a licensed driver. Before you get behind the wheel, make sure you know how to operate the cart and what safety features are available to you. Take it slow…you aren’t competing in a Nascar tourney.

Staying safe on the golf course is not a complicated task. A bit of common sense is all that you really need. Follow the tips above and your afternoon will turn out as pleasant as you hope.

If you were injured in a golf car accident, call our offices today. Our personal injury attorneys are here to help you. Call now.

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Golf carts aren’t just for the links any longer. Drive through any major city in North Carolina or any tourist town, and you just may find yourself sharing the road with these four-wheeled vehicles. Better yet, you may choose to drive one yourself. The ease of getting around town makes them quite attractive.

Unfortunately, golf carts are not required to pass the same safety standards as traditional motorized vehicles. This can put you and your passengers at very real risk of injury. A lack of regulations has caused these vehicles to be built with little adherence to safety standards. For example:

Tip Overs are Common

Due to their small tires and light weight, golf carts easily tip over when driven carelessly. Even when you drive with purpose, rough, uneven terrain can jostle the vehicles just enough so that they end up on their sides.

Lack of Seatbelts

Very few manufacturers put restraints in their golf carts because, quite simply, they are not required to do so. This leads to one of the main causes of injury and death: falling out of the vehicle.

Open Sides

Golf carts are meant to be entered and exited quickly. Because of this, they have open sides that allow for easy access to the interior of the vehicle. These open sides make it easier for passengers to fall out.

Lack of Maintenance

If you are going to rent a golf cart, ask about maintenance checks. Some facilities have maintenance plans in place and others do not. When maintenance isn’t performed, brakes can fail, seats wear out, and steering can become sticky.

Injuries caused by golf carts or their operation are more common than you may think. The most common injuries are:

Lacerations and Bruises

Cuts and bruises to the lower body are common. Soft tissue injuries occur for a variety of reasons.

Fractures

Fractures typically occur as a result of a person being thrown from or falling out of a golf cart.

Brain Injury

Concussion and hemorrhages are the most common neck and head injuries. Again, these are often caused when riders fall out of the cart.

Fatality

People die in golf cart accidents every year. These deaths result from collisions or ejection.

If you choose to drive or ride in a golf cart, it is important that you respect the vehicle. Safety is up to you. Know how to drive the cart and know how to ride correctly. You do not have the luxury of relying on safety features built into the cart.

If you have been injured in a golf cart accident, call our offices now. Our personal injury attorneys are here to help you today.

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A teenage girl in Florida found her life changed in April after becoming the victim of a terrible golf cart accident. While the story is not a local one, it does serve as a reminder that golf carts need to be taken seriously. While these small vehicles are looked at as a means of easy transportation, they are rarely looked upon as being as dangerous as cars and trucks. If you ask Lexy Eukitis, 17, that is exactly how they should be looked at.

This past April, Eukitis was along for the ride as her boyfriend tested a golf cart on the streets of his neighborhood. The throttle became stuck, ultimately causing the golf cart to crash. Eukitis was thrown from the cart and suffered a spine injury. The accident left the teen paralyzed from the waist down.

Eukitis is determined to walk again, and she has showed signs that muscle activity may be returning to her legs. For now, however, she uses a wheelchair. “I’m going to walk again, so I’m not taking no for an answer,” said the teen. “This can happen to you. It could happen to anybody.”

Along with the mother of her boyfriend, Eukitis wants to reach out to others and get them to understand that golf carts can be as dangerous as traditional motorized vehicles. “They are not as benign as people think they are,” said Leslie Morrison, the boyfriend’s mother.

Technology Associates, a research company that is on the leading edge of golf cart safety, says that there are 150,000 golf cart accidents each year. These accidents end with someone visiting the emergency room. Why? In part, the open-air design of the carts and what could be called poor braking capability.

As golf carts become more popular in major hubs around North Carolina, people are urged to consider that what they are operating or riding in should be considered motor vehicles. The same respect that one would show to a gas-powered, traditional vehicle should be shown to one of these carts. That means safe operations and zero horseplay.

If you have been injured in a golf cart accident, we are here for you. Our attorneys will work closely with you and your family and fight to get you the compensation you may be entitled to. Call us today for a free initial consultation. We want to help you. Call now.

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