• Accident Causes

    Balloon Barrage: Fires at the Fiesta 

    Rio Rancho, NM (October 7, 2019): On Monday, two people suffered injuries after a hot air balloon struck a power line and ignited a fire. The gondola made a hard landing in Rio Rancho, NM. And this wasn’t the only accident of its kind. Many hundreds of hot air balloons took to the sky as part of the Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta. Unfortunately, some were in for a bumpy ride. In another incident, one pilot accidentally got caught on a tree and then a light pole, causing the pilot to engage in a forced landing.

    It’s possible to suffer from burns and other serious injuries while riding a hot air balloon. If you have suffered such injuries, contact Lerner and Rowe Injury Attorneys. We’ll give you a free consultation and discuss your compensation. Source: NPR News

    Recreational Marijuana Legalization On the Table

    Statewide (September 25, 2019): Governor Michele Lujan Grisham is meeting with her work group for the fifth and final meeting today, Wednesday, September 25 to discuss legislation for properly legalizing recreational marijuana. The meeting is open to the public, and citizens are encouraged to voice their questions and concerns. Albuquerque City Councilor and Chairman of the work group has much to say. “What do you do when more people are accessing marijuana? And how do police respond to that, and what do we do with new marijuana revenue? Do we put it into education, do we do drug treatment?” Others are concerned about affordability and public safety issues.

    Lerner and Rowe would like to remind you to stay safe on the road. Regardless of whether marijuana becomes legal in New Mexico, you should never drive under the influence of mind-altering substances. Stay sober and alert on the road, and keep an eye out for others’ reckless actions, too. Source: KOAT7 News

    Drinking and Driving Causes Another Fatal Crash

    Albuquerque, NM (September 12, 2019): 31-year-old New Mexico driver Brian Leonard recently got sentenced to 10 years in prison for his reckless behavior that ended up killing a 69-year-old man. Police say Leonard had a BAC of 0.21%, which is more than twice the base level of intoxication. Furthermore, this wasn’t Leonard’s first traffic offense: he had received a conviction eight years ago for aggravated DWI, and he had pled guilty to vehicular homicide.

    If you’ve been drinking alcohol, ingesting medications, or smoking/vaping mind-altering substances, stay off the roads. Always stay sober when driving, and if you suspect that someone on the road is under the influence, stay away from them. Pull over and alert the authorities. Source: AlbuquerqueJournal

    Serial Drunk Driving is Dangerous

    Santa Fe, New Mexico (August 14, 2019): A New Mexico man was recently arrested for what is now his twelfth DWI. While no one was injured because of the man’s reckless driving, that doesn’t excuse driving under the influence in the first place. New Mexico takes driving under the influence seriously, yet sadly, the land of enchantment has a serious problem with drunk drivers

    In 2015, 30% of fatal accidents involved someone at or above the legal BAC limit. 

    On the whole, New Mexico drivers are ranked quite close to the bottom when it comes to the skill and safety of its drivers. This lack of precaution by drivers is thus exacerbated by those who make poor decisions and drive on the road while impaired.

    If you or someone you know suffered an injury or wrongful death from a drunk driver, contact Lerner and Rowe for a free consultation. We’ll work with you on your personal injury case. Sources: KRQE and Albuquerque Journal 

    More Bikes on the Roads

    Albuquerque, New Mexico (July 24, 2019): Mayor Tim Keller announced that bicycle patrols will now ride throughout the city in an effort to interact with the community. At least 22 officers are to be stationed throughout Albuquerque. Business owners and other citizens can get to know the officers in a friendly manner, showing that there’s no reason to fear our men and women in blue. Additionally, this measure will hopefully make the city safer by deterring crime. Furthermore, when a crime does happen, a bicycle patrol may be nearby and can arrive at the scene quickly.

    Keep in mind, though, that more bikes on the roads means more people to look out for. Many accidents are caused by distracted drivers not staying vigilant of others around them. Give cyclists ample space, and always yield the right of way. At night, make sure you keep an eye out for bicycle reflectors and reflective clothing. Finally, never drive drowsy or under the influence of mind-altering substances. Staying sober and alert will keep you out of an accident. Source: AlbuquerqueJournal

    Compounding Variables Contribute to NM Fatalities

    Statewide (June 28, 2019) – Many variables are contributing to New Mexico’s accident fatalities. For example, nearly one fourth of all accident-related deaths involved alcohol this past May. Additionally, alcohol was involved in over 20% of all New Mexico accidents, in general, for May, 2019. Seat belt usage is a huge concern, too. In over 50% of recorded accident fatalities, at least one vehicle occupant wasn’t wearing a seat belt.

    When you drive on New Mexico’s roads, make sure you drive sober and with your seat belt fastened. Furthermore, be sure to obey all traffic laws and avoid distractions such as text messages and loud music. Source: New Mexico Monthly Traffic Fatality Report, 2019

    Drinking and Driving

    Albuquerque (May 8, 2019) – A representative from the “Parents Who Host, Lose The Most – Don’t Be a Party to Teenage Drinking” program encourages parents to teach their children about the dangers of underage drinking. New Mexico has an especially alarming problem with underage drinkers, as there is a higher amount of underage drinkers than the national average. Source: OxfordTreatment.com

  • Accident Statistics

    Fewer Fatalities in June

    Statewide (August 9, 2019): According to the New Mexico Monthly Traffic Fatality Report, there were only 29 traffic fatalities in June 2019. This is a 21% decrease from June 2018 (37 fatalities), and a 14% decrease from June 2017 (34 fatalities). Furthermore, only 3 out of the 29 fatalities involved alcohol, which is 15 fewer than in June 2018, and 4 fewer than in June 2017.

    Hopefully the downward trend continues as the year goes on. The ideal situation would be for there to be no deaths on the road. However, accidents do happen, and if you happen to be in one, contact Lerner and Rowe. Don’t drive under the influence of drugs or alcohol, and stay vigilant while on the road. Source: New Mexico Monthly Traffic Fatality Report

    Fatalities Continue to Rise

    Statewide (June 14, 2019) – The month of May 2019 saw 37 total traffic fatalities, which is more than May 2018’s traffic-related fatalities (29) and May 2017’s traffic-related fatalities (32). The previous two months of 2019 also saw elevated numbers when compared to the corresponding months of previous years. If trends continue, June will have an even higher amount of traffic-related deaths. To stay safe on the road, make sure you drive defensively, stay vigilant, and obey all traffic rules and laws. Source: NM Monthly Traffic Fatality Report

    NM Fatalities

    Albuquerque (May 8, 2019) – Since the beginning of the year, there have been over 100 fatalities on New Mexico’s roads. If this trend continues, 2019 will have more deaths than either of the two previous years. Stay safe on the road, and keep an eye out for unexpected hazards, too. Source: New Mexico Monthly Traffic Fatality Report, 2019

  • News

    18 Fires Under Investigation

    Taos, NM (October 12, 2019): A stretch of 18 human-caused fires near the El Rito Campground area are now under investigation. The fires were started earlier this month and were first detected on October 1. As of now, the fires have burned more than 100 acres and have put both firefighters’ and the public’s safety at risk. While the fire is now contained, the fact that they were all non-accidental means only that the destruction and devastation could have been avoided.

    Burn injuries are serious and aren’t anything to mess around with. If you or someone you know suffer from a burn injury, seek medical help right away. Then, contact Lerner and Rowe Injury Attorneys for a free consultation regarding your personal injury case. Source: KRQE News

    New Mexico Crime Concerns Citizens

    Statewide (October 2, 2019): While New Mexico’s crime rate isn’t at its worst (as it was in 2018), violent and non-violent crime alike have been recent focuses for Mayor Tim Keller. In particular, crime in New Mexico is spearheaded by Albuquerque, the city with just over one-quarter of Mexico’s population. “We know, unfortunately, where Albuquerque goes, the rest of the state goes—especially with crime,” says Keller. “Our administration has been very clear that we have major challenges and that we own those challenges.” While there have been slow improvements, the New Mexico crime rate is overall still extremely worrisome (near the top of the charts), and this is illustrated by the shift from the Unified Crime Reporting Statistics to the National Incident-Based Reporting System, which records even more data than ever before.

    If you have been the victim of a violent or non-violent personal injury, contact Lerner and Rowe immediately. We will be happy to give you a free consultation and work with you. Source: KRQE News

    Don’t Slip and Slide While Driving

    Lordsburg, NM (September 17, 2019): A New Mexico State Police Officer suffered injury while on the road during heavy rain. While the officer was on his way to Lordsburg, his vehicle hydroplaned out of control. This caused him to crash into an F-250 pickup truck driven by a 63-year-old Arizonan. Both drivers were transferred to a local hospital for treatment, and their injuries are not life-threatening.

    While everyone turned out fine in this scenario, Lerner and Rowe would like to remind you to stay safe on the roads, especially now that school is back in session. Always mind the weather before you get in your car, and stay especially vigilant during low-visibility conditions. Source: LCSunNews

    Drug Epidemic Continues to Rise

    Statewide (September 5, 2019): A recent report released by the New Mexico Health Department states that the drug epidemic continues to be of main concern in the state of New Mexico. In 2017, there were 491 drug overdose deaths, but recent findings show that 2018 had even more: a total of 537 drug overdose deaths.  That’s a 9.1% increase. In fact, 2018 marked the year with New Mexico’s second-highest drug overdose deaths amount, surpassed only by 2014’s 540 deaths on record. Of particular concern is methamphetamine use, which was involved in over one-third of 2018’s overdose deaths. Health Secretary Kathy Kunkel wants to assure the public that she and her agency are working to curtail the abuse of both illicit and prescription drugs.

    Ultimately, it’s best to seek a health evaluation from a licensed medical practitioner prior to taking a prescribed drug or seeking an alternative form of medication. If you do take a drug, do so responsibly. For example, don’t get behind the wheel while under the influence of medications that can affect your judgment and driving ability. Source: KOB4 News

    Learn Martial Arts in Albuquerque

    Albuquerque, New Mexico (August 1, 2019): The Dynamic Taekwondo Academy is an excellent facility for learning the Korean martial art. Open to people of all ages, one can start from the basics and work their way up to the black belt, just as Junge Lavinge, a 70-year-old woman, did. One can learn the martial art for competitive purposes, or just to have in the arsenal of one’s self-defense resources. No matter the reason, Dynamic Taekwondo Academy encourages everyone to apply, even if you’re in your 90s (as one of the students is)!

    Keep in mind, though, that trying to take the law into your own hands is no substitute for proper legal council in the event of an assault. If you or someone you know has been attacked, contact Lerner and Rowe. We’ll work with you on your personal injury case to help seek the justice you deserve. Source: KOB4

    Five Fatalities on Road 128

    Jal, New Mexico (July 11, 2019):  A Chevrolet pickup truck traveling west on road 128 collided with a semi-truck on Thursday morning. The pickup crossed into eastbound traffic, where the head-on crash took place. Both vehicles then caught fire, and four people died at the scene, five in total, as was stated by the Office of the Medical Investigator. The investigation is ongoing, and alcohol doesn’t appear to be a factor in the tragic incident. When you drive, make sure you are well rested, and avoid distractions. Safe driving practices can help lessen the chances of getting in an accident. Source: CurrentArgus

    New Mexico Ranked as Worst State for Kids

    Statewide (June 17, 2019) – New Mexico once again ranks on the bottom of the list of American states to be a kid. In terms of economic, education, health, and family/community factors, New Mexico took 50th place for 2013, 2018, and 2019. While New Mexico saw some small improvements in each category for 2019, there is still much room for progress to improve the well-being of children.

    For example, 6% of teens reported abusing drugs or alcohol. While not as bad as in previous years, many problems must be addressed, and soon, if New Mexico wants to improve its standing. In terms of safety, too, New Mexico is ranked 47/50, with 50 being the worst. This is mainly due to high amounts of crime and a low amount of police officers. As such, local law enforcement agencies suggest that adults warn children of potential dangers, and that residents should take extra precautions for personal safety at night and avoid suspicious areas of town. Sources: Albuquerque Journal Albuquerque Business First

    Explosion at Roswell

    Roswell, NM (June 5, 2019) – On Wednesday afternoon, firefighters packing fireworks for an upcoming Fourth of July celebration suffered injuries from an explosion at the Roswell Airport. 10 firefighters suffered minor injuries, and 2 are in critical condition. While the cause of the explosion is still not known, what is known is that authorities arrived on the scene incredibly quickly. The swift response by police and other firefighters saved many others from possibly catastrophic damages. Source: KRQE

    New Police Chief

    Santa Fe (April 5, 2019) – Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham appoints state police veteran Tim Johnson as the new head of New Mexico’s police force. Johnson promises to implement new policies that prohibit discrimination, and he plans to keep New Mexico safer, overall. If you ever get into legal trouble, check out this guide to legal terms. Source: U.S. News