When should I call the Police after an Ontario motor vehicle accident?

After suffering a motor vehicle accident in Ottawa there are many things going through your mind.  Many people wonder when they should call the Police to the scene.  Is it only when there is significant damage to the car, or are there other considerations to keep in mind?

If you have been involved in an Ontario motor vehicle accident and sustained injuries resulting in a loss of work or mobility call Brenda Hollingsworth Personal Injury Lawyers at 613-860-4529 for a free consultation. We can advise you on the best options for your claim and how to pursue compensation.

There are a lot of considerations to take into account after an Ontario motor vehicle accident. The amount of damage on a car can be deceiving.  A trailer hitch for example can take a great deal of impact without looking overly damaged. However, the driver could have suffered significant impact from the hit.

There is never a “bad reason” to call the Police when in a motor vehicle accident in Ottawa. If you feel any pain or think you may have suffered a personal injury,  call the police to attend the scene so that they will file a report. It will help you support your claim later on.

Watch CTVMorning Live as Kurt Stoodley and Brenda Hollingsworth speak about personal injury claims after an Ontario motor vehicle accidents and when to call the Police.

Have you suffered an Ontario motor vehicle accident? Call the Ottawa personal injury lawyers at Brenda Hollingsworth’s office for a free consultation. They can show you your rights and how to fight for fair compensation.

How to teach your child important bicycle skills

OTTAWA INJURY LAWYER  — As Ottawa personal injury lawyers we frequently come across individuals who were injured in car accidents, slip and falls or in a workplace situation, but often the most heartbreaking cases are those that involve injured children.  While we can’t protect our children from every harm, we should do all we can to help prevent situations in which they can get seriously injured.  Bicycle safety is an important area that can help save your child from being unnecessarily injured.  As parents, there are a few simple things you can do to help your child avoid accidents and injuries while riding their bicycle.

While it may seem obvious, teaching your child how to ride in a straight line is very important.  Riding a bicycle can be difficult at first and riding it in a straight line can be even tougher!  Before you let your child ride off with their friends, make sure that you are confident (and so are they) that they can consistently ride in a straight line.  If they can ride in a straight line, they will be better able to stay out of the way of other vehicles and pedestrians.  To teach this to your child, take them to a quiet park or empty parking lot where there is plenty of room and few obstacles.  Stand a short distance away from your child and have them ride towards you in a straight line.  Have them practice this several times, and if you want, you can gradually increase the distance they have to ride to reach you.

Another important skill for you to teach your child is how to turn.  This can be a difficult skill for beginner cyclists so it may take some time for your child to be able to successfully turn while riding their bike.  To teach your child how to effectively turn, take your child to an empty parking lot or cul-de-sac and have them practice riding in a figure-eight pattern.  At first it will be easier for your child to ride in a larger pattern, but over time you can challenge them to make the figure-eights smaller, thus allowing them to practice tighter turns.

Once your child has mastered these basic cycling skills, you can teach them more advanced, but very important, skills such as looking back without swerving.  It is important for cyclists to look behind them before making a left-hand turn, but while doing so, they must continue to ride in a straight line.  You can practice this with your child by once again taking them to an empty parking lot or park and have them ride past you.  As they ride past, hold up a picture of a car or hide the picture behind your back.  Tell them to look back and tell you if they have seen the car.  This exercise will teach your child to look back and assess the situation without swerving.

One last skill you should teach your child is braking control.  It can take time to learn how much pressure to put on the brake and to learn how long it will take to stop before reaching an obstacle.  It can be difficult for a child to judge the distance between themselves and an obstacle and to then break in time.  To practice proper braking techniques with your child, draw a line on your driveway or in an empty parking lot and have your child practice riding towards the line and then stopping right before it.  You can have them approach the line at varying speeds so that they learn how to properly brake in different situations.

Before you let your kids ride their bicycles with their friends outside of your supervision, make sure that they have mastered these few important skills.  By equipping your child with essential bicycle skills, you have done your part to help prevent bicycle accidents and injuries.  Nonetheless, if you or your child has been seriously injured in a bicycle accident, you may benefit from speaking with a personal injury lawyer.  An Ontario injury lawyer can assess your case and help you with any legal proceedings you may be able to pursue.  The personal injury lawyers at Auger Hollingsworth would be happy to discuss your case with you.

Ottawa Lawyer: How to Avoid Ontario Winter Car Accidents

OTTAWA PERSONAL INJURY LAWYER  – In 2008, the Ontario Provincial Police issued a list of important safety reminders to help drivers avoid car accidents and collisions in Ontario during winter.  Please remember to:

  • Reduce the speed of your car and drive to the weather and road conditions;
  • Leave additional space between vehicles. To avoid rear-ending the car in front, note that stopping distances are at least double on snowy roads, and are even longer in icy conditions;
  • Get ready for quickly changing conditions. Blowing snow can instantly reduce visibility in your vehicle, and gusting winds can cause ice to form quickly;
  • Keep track of where you are. Monitor intersections as you pass them in case you need to call for help in an emergency;
  • Check road and weather conditions.
  • Make sure your car headlights work;
  • Keep your car’s windshield clean, inside and out;
  • Replace your vehicle’s wiper blades, as necessary;
  • Replenish your car’s windshield washer fluid;
  • Check your car battery;
  • Keep your vehicle’s gas tank at least half full;
  • Install 4 winter tires on your car;
  • Wear winter clothes while driving; and
  • Maintain a winter survival kit in your vehicle (blanket, flashlight,candle, cell phone and some food or drinks.)

Auger Hollingsworth urges you to stay safe this winter.

Auger Hollingsworth represents people injured in car accidents in Ottawa, Smith Falls, Brockville, Kingston, Perth, Ontario, Hawksbury, Napanee and many places in between.  If you have been injured and want a free case evaluation, contact us at 613 860-4529 or at [email protected].

Canada Day Personal Injury & Safety

OTTAWA PERSONAL INJURY LAWYER – Often, we look forward to a relaxing Canada Day at a provincial park– away from it all. However, undoubtedly our kids will insist at about 8 p.m. that we hightail it downtown to watch the fireworks over Parliament Hill.

Despite the crush of being surrounded by a hundred thousand of our closest friends, this is still probably a wise idea. Do-it-yourself fireworks can be a problem. Canada does not keep statistics on injuries from fireworks. However, in May 1998 the Canadian Hospitals Injury Reporting and Prevention Program examined its information for this type of injury. There were 175 fire-works-related injuries. 42% of the injuries were to kids aged 10 to 14.

Your odds probably don’t improve if you have enjoyed a few cold ones over the course of the day.  At minimum, if you are going to use consumer fireworks, follow these important safety tips from the Canada Safety Council:

  • Purchase your fireworks from a reliable source that sells products meeting safety standards.
  • Stay away from illegal firecrackers and do not improvise and make your own fireworks.
  • Read the Instructions, cautions and warnings on each firework item.
  • Store unused fireworks in a closed box away from the firework being lit and do not smoke around the fireworks.
  • Set up outdoors in a clear, open space. Light fireworks on a hard, flat and level surface to insure stability.
  • Check the wind and have the wind blowing away from the spectators.
  • Spectators should be at least 25 feet away from display, keeping special supervision on children.
  • Have a bucket of sand, supply of water and a working fire extinguisher on hand.
  • Only adults (18 years or over) should handle the fireworks. If you are impaired (alcohol or drugs) do not handle the fireworks.
  • Light only one firework item at a time.
  • Wear protective eye glasses and gloves. Light at arm’s length and then stand back.
  • Never lean over the fireworks and keep hair and clothes away from fire sources.
  • Never attempt to re-light a “dud” or defective firework.
  • Never hold a lighted firework item in your hand.
  • Sparklers should be immersed in a bucket of sand to cool down after burning out, as they remain very hot for some time.
  • Fireworks should be disposed of safely and properly.

Ottawa Bicycle Lawyer | Bicycle Laws

Ottawa Bicycle Lawyer Shares Bicycle Laws

Ontario’s Highway Traffic Act gives cyclists all of the same rights and responsibilities as car drivers and operators of other motor vehicles. In addition,  here are some laws that are unique to bicycle riders. 

First,  bikers must ride as close as they can to the right curb of the road, except when:

  • Travelling at the regular speed of traffic
  • Avoiding hazardous conditions  (this refers to sewer grates, potholes etc.)
  • The roadway is too narrow for a bike and a vehicle to travel side by side safely
  • Riding alongside another cyclist in a manner that does not impede the normal movement of traffic
  • Preparing to make a left turn, passing another vehicle, or using a one-way street (in which case riding alongside the left curb is permitted)

In Ottawa, bikes are not allowed on sidewalks. 

Second, bike helmets must be worn by all cyclists who are under the age of 18. (We think everyone should wear a helmet.)

Third, bicycles are allowed on multi-use pathways. However, all cyclists should follow these guidelines:

  • Stay to the right
  • Pass other path users only if it is safe to do so
  • Give noticec with your bell or your voice when you are passing
  • Keep your speed to a rate suitable for a shared pathway (i.e. less than 20 km/hr)


Fourth,  bicycles in Ottawa are required to be equipped with the following equipment:

  •  horn or bell
  •  brake on the rear wheel able to skid that wheel on dry, level pavement
  •  front white light that can be seen from 150 metres
  •  rear red light or red reflector
  •  two white strips of reflective tape on your front forks measuring 125mm x 25mm
  •  two red strips of reflective tape on your rear forks


The lighting rules (in red) apply for riding between 30 minutes pre-sunset and 30 minutes post-sunset and anytime there is reduced visibility. 

Are you injured in a bike accident and need an accident lawyer?  The Ottawa, Ontario accident lawyers at Auger Hollingsworth can assist you by explaining your legal rights. Call us today at (613) 233-4529 or email us at [email protected].

Ontario’s Booster Seat Law Seeks to Limit Injuries to Kids in Accidents

Ontario’s Booster Seat Law Seeks to Limit Injuries to Kids in Accidents

In Ontario, Canada in 2005, a law was passed that made booster seats mandatory for children who are too big for car seats and too small for ordinary adult seat belts. Children who are too small for booster seats must use a car seat by law. The specifics are as follows:

  • Babies up to 9 kg must be in a rear-facing car-seat away from all active airbags
  • Toddlers between 9 and 18 kg must be in a forward-facing car seat with a tether strap
  • Children between 18 and 36 kg must use a booster seat with a lap and shoulder belt

And just to make sure that this law is taken seriously, a fine of $110 and two demerit points are slapped on drivers who do not take this important step. This law applies to anyone who carries children in their car, whether they are parents or just the babysitter.

One of the reasons why this law came into being was the growing number of injuries attributed to seat belt syndrome. While seat belts certainly proved to be helpful for adults, a number of youngsters were sustaining serious internal and abdominal injuries due to lap seat belts. This is mainly due to two factors. One is that seatbelts are mainly designed with adults in mind, not children. Secondly, in a number of cases seat belts themselves have been found to be defective.

Many parents think that just because a child is physically big, they are ready to use ordinary seat belts. But the truth is that a child’s body is very different from an adult’s body. The stress and strain that an adult’s body can take could have serious repercussions for a child. For example, during impact, an adult might sustain whiplash but a child’s body could actually jackknife. When this happens, the seat belt can actually cause extensive internal injuries.

Ontario’s recent booster seat legislation seems to be working, with studies showing that they actually increase child protection by nearly 60%. Now a number of other Canadian provinces are looking to follow Ontario’s example.

Children might not like booster seats initially, especially if they think it is just a ‘baby seat’. But it is important to make it clear that the booster seat is there for their safety. Furthermore, tell the child that they can only ride in the car if they sit in the booster seat. If the child has older siblings, encourage them to be supportive about using the booster seat. That booster seat could mean the difference between slight scratches and massive internal injuries if an accident occurs.

If your child is injured in an accident and was not properly restrained in the appropriately-sized safety seat, your child will have a claim against the driver of the car—even if the driver is a family member. A consultation with a personal injury lawyer will assist you to determine your child’s rights.

To speak with an Ottawa personal injury lawyer at Auger Hollingsworth call us at 613-233-4529, email us at [email protected] or use our contact form by clicking here.

Ottawa Lawyer: Safety Canada Online

Enjoy a Safe and Happy Summer: Ottawa Personal Injury Lawyers

With Ontario’s short summer, it’s important to enjoy the season to the fullest, keeping in mind all dangers that enjoyable activities can present. Take a look at this newsletter provided by the Canada Safety Council to learn great tips on little things to do that can ensure the safety of your children and to avoid accidents.


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