How Do I Choose the Right Hospital For My Needs?

The first step in choosing the proper hospital is determining how you are going to pay for your medical care. Hospital stays average tens of thousands of dollars. Make sure that your health insurance provider will pay for your treatment at a specific hospital. If you're having a scheduled procedure, most insurers require that you get pre-approval to guarantee that the hospital bill will be paid.

For emergency care, the same consideration needs to be made. Choose a health plan that will cover treatment at the hospital of your choice. Although it is true that no US hospital can deny you treatment for lack of insurance, it's also true that someone has to pay for that treatment. You might get admitted to an emergency room for a broken leg and next month receive a bill for a $ 700 X-ray, a $ 1,000 ER fee, $ 2,000 for the resident and $ 500 for pain medication. Just because you must be treated by law, it does not mean you'll be treated for free.

Ask friends and family about hospitals in your area. Everyone's experience is different, but you'll get a good idea of ​​what a hospital is like by surveying answers about the hospital staff's attitude, the comfort of the rooms and the quality of food in patient rooms as well as the cafeteria.

Compare the quality of care in a particular hospital with others in the same area. Review many factors before making your hospital decision. A good place to begin is at the US Department of Health & Human Services' Hospital Compare website. This is where people can see how hospitals compare to one another on a statewide or national basis pertaining to a specific illness or treatment.

Check hospital accreditation with the Joint Commission which has been accrediting hospitals for more than 50 years. This organization is a non-profit, independent group that certifies more than 15,000 health care organizations in the United States. This accreditation is recognized nationally to guarantee a hospitals commitment to meeting high standards for performance.

Make sure the hospital of your choice has experience with your condition, whether you are having a baby or need open heart surgery. Various hospitals have reputations for treating specific illnesses. Quantity is not an indication of quality, but it's always good to go to a hospital that has the most experience treating your condition, especially if it is serious or rare.

Make sure your doctor or specialist has privileges at the hospital of your choice. If you go to a hospital where your doctor is not allowed to practice, you will be under the care of a different doctor, not your own.

Choosing the right hospital can mean the difference between life and death. Take time to accurately assess your needs and determine which institution will provide the best care for your particular condition. Plan ahead so you are not faced with choosing a hospital in an emergency situation. When a crisis arises, you will have already resolved the issue of which hospital is best for you.

Resources:

The Joint Commission, One Renaissance Blvd, Oakbrook Terrace, IL 60181, 630-792-5000

http://www.jointcommission.org

US Department of Health & Human Services, 200 Independence Ave, SW, Washington, DC

http://www.hospitalcompare.hhs.gov

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Automobile Accident Litigation: Overturning the Unfavorable Police Report

Introduction: The Police Report is against your client. Now what? Over the last sixteen years of practicing personal injury and automobile accident law, it has been our experience that the quality of traffic accident investigations has steadily declined, leaving many injured people further harmed by a poor or incomplete police report. The reasons are as follows: government budget issues, poor police officer training, and a lack of commitment to performing a complete accident investigation. Certain well meaning police officers are just not qualified to investigate a complicated catastrophic car, truck or pedestrian injury or death case.

If the police report is against your client an insurance adjuster may not want to make a reasonable settlement offer. As a result the case may be difficult to resolve in a positive way for an injured client. A lawsuit may need to be filed and depositions of the witnesses, drivers, and investigating police officers taken to rebut the police report’s conclusion. If the facts can be developed, it is the attorney’s job to show the insurance adjuster, a judge or jury that the police officer got it wrong.

As we unpack the issues involved in overturning the unfavorable police report we will be discussing the following topics:

A. What is a Traffic Collision Report?

B. Who Has Standing to Obtain a Copy of the Traffic Collision Report?

C. Is the Primary Reporting Officer’s Opinion Admissible at Trial?

D. Are the Witness Statements Within a Police Report Admissible at Trial?

E. Proving the Primary Reporting Officer’s Opinion Is Wrong.

A. What is a Traffic Collision Report?

The Traffic Collision Report or CHP 555 is the standard reporting tool for most all police officer traffic investigators in California. It is intended to satisfy the basic data requirement needs of all users of traffic collision information.

The box on page 2 of the CHP 555 identifies the Primary Collision Factor. Primary Collision factor is defined by the CHP as; “PRIMARY COLLISION FACTOR. Select the one element or driving action which in the officer’s opinion, best describes the primary or main cause of the collision. Whenever possible, this should be a Vehicle Code (VC) violation.”

The term Other Associated Factor is defined by the CHP as; “OTHER ASSOCIATED FACTORS(S). When a secondary violation has been determined to have contributed to the collision, write the VC section in the appropriate box.”

B. Who Has Standing to Obtain a Copy of the Traffic Collision Report?

Drivers involved in car accidents are required by statute to file reports with the California Highway Patrol or local police department, Vehicle Code section 20008. People with a “proper interest” can obtain copies of a police report, Vehicle Code section 20012.

The parties involved in the accident or any other persons having a “proper interest” may obtain copies of a police report. This includes persons involved in later accidents at the same location because the reports may disclose highway conditions causing or contributing to their own accident. See, California ex rel. Dept. of Transp. v. Sup.Ct. (Hall), 37 C3d at 855.

C. Is the Primary Reporting Officer’s Opinion Admissible at Trial?

There are two distinctions regarding admissibility. First is the admissibility of the report itself. The second issue is the admissibility of an officer’s ultimate opinion or conclusion. These are both separate and distinct evidentiary issues.

California Vehicle Code section 20013 states, “No such accident report shall be used as evidence in any trial, civil or criminal, arising out of an accident. The rule against admitting police reports into evidence is well established, Fernandez v. Di Salvo Appliance Co, 179 Cal App 2d 240; Summers v. Burdick 191 Cal App 2d 464 at 470. The policy behind Vehicle Code section 20013 is to protect against the danger of the jury giving more weight to the police report’s conclusion simply because of its “official” character. There is a danger that the “official” police report alone may be relied upon to determine the verdict. As a result the contents of a traffic collision report should be excluded. Sherrell v. Kelso 116 Cal App 3d Supp 22 at 31.

However a police officer witness disclosed in conformity with a California Evidence Code section 2034 demand, who also qualifies as an expert witness, with sufficient experience and training, may give an opinion on the factors involved in causing an accident. Hart v. Wielt 4 Cal App 3d 224. In Hart a 13 year veteran of the California Highway Patrol, with extensive training and schooling in accident investigation was allowed to given an opinion on the proper speed given the conditions. The case involved a vehicle which slid out of control while maneuvering a sharp curve on State Highway 32 going towards Chester. Before the officer gave his opinion on speed the trial judge admonished the Jury that it was up to them to make the final determination of a proper speed and also whether or not the CHP officer was qualified as an expert witness.

In the case of Kastner v. Los Angeles Metro. Transit Auth 63 Cal 2d 52, a police officer deemed qualified by reason of his special knowledge, training and experience was allowed to give an opinion on the point of impact between a bus and a pedestrian. The opinion was based almost entirely on a statement given to the officer by the defendant bus driver at the scene. The bus driver testified at trial identical to the statement given to the police officer at the scene. This removed any argument that the officer’s opinion was based on inadmissible hearsay. The Supreme Court in Kastner acknowledged that the trial judge must first determine whether or not the jury is aided by the expert opinion or if the question is within the common experience of an ordinary person, hence and expert’s opinion would not be necessary, see Kastner at page 57.

In summary, the hard copy of the police report itself stays out of evidence. However if the foundation is present for an expert opinion from the police officer, the ultimate opinion in some form may find its way into evidence. But first the offering party must establish the subject of the opinion is sufficiently beyond common experience, the police officer has the appropriate qualifications, and the opinion is based on reliable evidence, see California Evidence Code sections 720 and 801.

D. Are the Witness Statements Within a Police Report Admissible at Trial?

Generally police reports contain statements of plaintiff, defendant, and non-party percipient witnesses. Whether or not these statements are admissible depends on whether or not they are hearsay. California Evidence code section 1200 states, “Hearsay evidence” is evidence of a statement that was made other than by a witness while testifying at the hearing and that is offered to prove the truth of the matter stated.”

What is admissible? Most commonly statements in police reports made by the plaintiff or defendant will come into evidence via an established hearsay exception. Admissions from a plaintiff or defendant are the most commonly relied upon hearsay exceptions, Cal. Evidence Code Sections 1220-1227. Also statements of a non-party percipient witness may come into evidence as impeachment if the witnesses’ statement at trial is shown to be inconsistent with a statement given to the police officer, California Evidence Code section 791.

E. Proving the Primary Reporting Officer’s Opinion Is Wrong.

They key establishing a factual showing that the police officer got it wrong is a complete investigation of the foundation of the officer’s opinion. For accidents in congested urban areas it is common for an investigating officer to only speak to the one or two witnesses who are willing to wait around at the scene and talk to the officer. When a witness sees that other people have come forward to volunteer as witnesses, most people simply leave the scene thinking they are not needed.

Some witnesses that are actually spoken to by a police officer are only spoken to for a short period of time, in an abbreviated manner that leaves out critical details of how the witnesses’ attention was drawn to the accident, what they actually saw versus what they think may have happened. The typical police officer statement is a summary of what was said to the officer. An oral witness statement is noted by an officer in his notebook. These notes are then transferred into the typed up police report. The typical police officer procedure for taking and documenting witness statements is much less reliable than a taped audio recording of a witness. It is important to contact witnesses in the police report to determine the accuracy and foundation for the statements attributed to them by a police officer.

How do you find the witnesses who are not identified in the police report? The keys to finding additional witnesses are as follow: post signs in the surrounding area of the scene; return to the area and ask local store owners for the names of anyone they know may have see the event; look for surveillance videos that may have caught the collision itself on video; and secure the computer aided dispatch (CAD) printouts or audio recordings of the people calling in to report the accident via their cell phones. The CAD records will show the phone numbers for all of the people calling into the 911 dispatch system to report the accident. Many of these callers are good percipient witnesses whose names are not in the police report.

Any good accident investigation is not complete without a thorough accident reconstruction. In pedestrian injury cases a good time distance analysis of what the driver should have seen, at what distance from the point of impact, over what time period may be revealing. With known or estimated driving speeds an expert may be able to back up a driver’s field of view (line of sight) and determine if the driver reasonably had enough time to stop prior to the point of impact. It is extremely rare for an investigating police officer to conduct a time distance / sight line analysis, to determine whether or not a reasonable driver should have avoided the collision. A complete accident reconstruction is expensive. Think about whether or not a complete accident reconstruction is feasible given the damages involved in the case.

Conclusion: When confronted with a police report that is against your client remember the following. A police report is just a summary of the facts taken in an abbreviated manner and collected over a short period of time. Often the report is incomplete, misleading and lacking in factual foundation. If you believe in the case; do not stand down just because the police report is against your client. Conduction your own investigation and make your own determination of the extent of any driver negligence.

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Automobile Dealerships – Out of Trust – Keepers

The Necessity of a Keeper

When a lender feels its security is in jeopardy, it frequently places a keeper in the dealership. This action is usually precipitated by the lender losing its "comfort level" with the dealer.

While many dealers interpret the placing of a keeper in their dealership as a hostile action on the part of the lender, their reaction is based more upon emotion than logic. The lending officer works for a corporation and the corporation is owned by shareholders. The officer has a duty to the company and to the shareholders to protect their security.

"The act of (a lender) in placing its representatives at the plant of its debtor reflected only the natural instincts, interest and solicitude of any other creditor then in its position, and (the lender) is not on that account alone to be penalized by being declared the principal. " Commercial Credit Co. v. LA Benson Co., Inc. 184 A. 236, at 240 (Md. 1936).

See too: Cosoff v. Rodman (In re WT Grant Co.) , 699 F.2d 599 (2d Cir.) Cert. denied, at: 104 S.Ct. 89 (1983) where the court said the banks would have been derelict in their duty to their creditors and stockholders if they did not keep a careful watch on the debtor.

The lending officer did not wake up one morning and decide it would be a good idea to put a keeper in the dealership. In the typical case, the dealership had either been experiencing financial difficulties for a period of time, or a series of floor checks revealed the dealer had "sold and unpaid" vehicles of such an unusually high proportion to monthly sales, that the lender classified the vehicles as being sold out of trust. In either situation, a prudent lender must view the dealer from a different perspective.

No one can predict what a person will do under the continued pressure of serious financial difficulties. By the time a lender puts a keeper in a dealership, the burdens the dealer is shouldering have been growing for some time. The dealer usually does not fully comprehend the extent of the strain under which he or she has been functioning; but, when one faces numerous negotiations with creditors, endless days of chasing cash to make payroll and pay bills and does not have enough cash to purchase and keep a good trade, one's judgment becomes clouded. An experienced lender knows that a normally rational person can do most anything when placed under a sufficient amount pressure, for a sufficient amount of time.

When the keeper appears, the dealer rather than being vengeful or hurt should realize the dealership needs professional help and seek it. There are many ways to continue operating a dealership with a keeper and to resolve the situation, re-capitalize the store, or sell the dealership at a fair price, vis-à-vis a fire sale.

In most instances, a keeper is placed in a dealership upon the mutual consent of the dealer and the finance company. At the meeting preceding such an action, it is wise for the parties to identify, agree to and understand the specific duties and corresponding actions, of the keeper.

The Keeper's Affirmative Duties

Although the primary concern of the keeper lies in the care and custody of the floored vehicles, in most instances the lender also holds a security interest in all or part of the dealership's assets. Consequently, the keeper will want to be and should be aware of the dealer's attitude towards assets other than the floored vehicles and should report to the credit company any indication on the part of the dealer to dispose of any such assets.

The keeper, usually more than one person, will be at the dealership every business day from the time the first employee arrives, until the last employee leaves. The keeper should be responsible for:

(1) The condition, location and security of the pledged assets;

(2) Keeping the vehicles':
a. Ignition Keys
b. Dealer License Plates
c. MSOs and / or Invoices and other documentation required to transfer title.

(3) Being present when the mail is opened;

(4) Taking custody of the cash and checks;

(5) Taking custody of the unused check stock;

(6) Supervising preparation of the bank deposit and agreeing upon whom will make the deposit;

(7) The disposition of proceeds on contracts of sold vehicles, to be sure the money gets to the proper parties;

(8) Arranging for third party finance companies, which purchase the dealer's contracts, to include the lender's name on proceeds checks, or, in the alternative, to refuse to permit the dealer to contract a sale to other finance companies;

(9) Being responsible for protecting the vehicles after the dealership closes; if the vehicles cannot be blocked from exiting the facility, via a fence and "blockers", a security guard should be hired;

(10) Establishing a means of maintaining a running, daily, or semi-daily, inventory control of unsold vehicles. Only one vehicle at a time, for which the lender has not received payment, should leave the dealership, whether of not that vehicle is floored;

(11) Being aware of the activities in the Parts Department and its employees.

Courts have approved of lenders controlling the release of the bank's collateral, depositing all accounts receivable in a special banking account and requiring the counter-signature of the bank's agent for all payments from the special account [ Ford v. CE Wilson & Co. Inc. , 120 F.2d 614 (2d Cir. 1942)], receiving regular reports on the accounts payable activity, receiving estimated weekly expense budgets [ Edwards v. Northeastern Bank , 39 NC App. 261, 250 SE 2d 651 (1979)], proffering advice to the dealer, even coupled with a decision to withhold credit [ In re Beverages International, Ltd. , 50 Bankr 273 (D. Mass 1985), requiring the debtor to hire a consultant acceptable to the bank in the management and sale of the company, requiring the debtor to implement a lockbox with respect to its receivables and requiring certain individuals to pledge their stock in the debtor, to the bank [ In re. Technology for Energy Corp , 56 Bankr. 307 (ED Tenn. 1985).

Acts a Keeper Should Not Perform

If the work-out plan ever deteriorates and / or the relationship becomes hostile between the lender and the dealer, or creditors or employees of the dealer, the keeper's will come under the scrutiny of a court. In such a case, those actions could be the beginning of a basis of liability or exoneration for the lender. In order to best protect the lender, the keeper should be aware of the following:

(1) The lender has an affirmative duty not to unnecessarily, maliciously or promiscuously disclose the financial condition of its debtor and any unauthorized disclosure could be a basis for both compensatory and punitive damages. Rubenstein v. South Denver Nat'l Bank , Case No 86CA0840 (Colo. 1988);

(2) Participating in board meetings and exercising decision making authority with respect to the day to day operations of the business could make the lender liable for all of the debts of the debtor. Lurgen, Liability of a Creditor in a Control Relationship With Its Debtor , 67 Marq. Law Review 523 (1984); See too: Restatement (Second) Agency, Section 14-0, Comment "a";

(3) Evidence of personality conflicts with the borrower could support a bad faith claim by the debtor. KMC v. Irving Trust Co. , 757 F.2d 752 (6th Cir. 1985)

(4) Making threats which the lender is not prepared to carry-out, may support a fraud action against the lender. State Nat'l Bank of El Paso v. Farah Manufacturing Co. 678 SW2d 661 (Tex. App. El Paso 1984).

(5) Misleading a lender who intends to refinance the debtor, as to the debtor's financial condition may result in liability to the third party lender. General Motors Acceptance Corporation v Central National Bank of Mattoon , 773 F.2d 771 (7th Cir. 1985).

Note too: while a factory does not seem to owe a duty to protect a lender's floor plan status, to inform the lender of the fact that the dealer is going to sell, there is a triable issue of fact as to whether or not the factory has a duty to disclose the foreseeability of the dealer going out of trust. Beneficial Commercial Corp. v. Murray Glick Datsun, Inc. 601 F.Supp. 770 SDNY 1985).

Procedures for Handling Insurance and Service Contract Monies

Some lenders have experienced staffs, which understand the above issues and problems. In any case, the dealer should be aware of them and should open new trust accounts. The accounts should be opened at a separate bank, in order to avoid any misunderstandings. If the lender wishes to audit these new accounts, that is fair. If a lending officer threatens to penalize the dealer for protecting the customer's money, he or she is being unreasonable and the dealer should ascend the chain of command until reason prevails. If reason does not prevail, the dealer has hard evidence of the lender creating an untenable position, which evidence may prove useful at a later date.

The handling of the premiums for life, accident and health insurance, and for service contracts, does not create a problem, if a routine is established. Always, with respect to insurance premiums, and usually with service contracts, the sale is covered under a security agreement. The lender and dealer should agree that all "time sales" will be restricted to the lender, unless a third party financing company agrees to put the lender's name on the proceeds check, which usually does not happen.

When a time-sale is being arranged, advance approval of the lender is should be required. Subsequently, when the contract is offered to the lender for purchase, the lender should deduct the amount necessary to release the flooring. If the proceeds of sale are insufficient to clear the flooring, the keeper should have already deposited the cash down payment, and / or have taken possession of the title to the trade-in.

The proceeds of sale, in excess of the flooring, are given to the keeper, who supervises the deposit of the service contract and insurance monies to the trust account and the mailing of the premiums companies to the appropriate insurance companies. If possible, the pay-off for the traded vehicle is also made from the general account of the dealership.

The above process, while time consuming, is necessary. The parties should appreciate the understanding, patience and cooperation needed from each other in order to make the operation run smoothly. If either the keeper, or the dealer, has a problem working with the other, the problem should be discussed with the keeper's superior and resolved, or a new keeper assigned.

Procedures for Handling Payroll Monies

With respect to payroll monies, the dealership should continue with separate payroll account and the lender should agree to permit a payroll large enough for sufficient personnel to run the dealership in order to complete whatever stage of the work-out plan the parties have reached. If the dealership is winding-down sufficient payroll should be allowed for a "skeleton crew" to prepare the dealership for sale, or closing. Equipment will have to be guarded and maintained. Secretarial and accounting work will have to be completed. With respect to sales people, although they do fall within the minimum wage laws, they only get paid a commission if they make a sale and, if they do, they probably will have sold the asset for more money than the lender would get at an auction. The source of funds to cover the dealership operations is discussed in the next section.

Commissioned Salespeople

As mentioned, the commissioned salesperson gets paid a commission if and only if a contract for the sale of a vehicle cashes. They represent the best means of obtaining full value for the lender's security. Consequently, the lender, regardless of its security interest, would probably be wise to subordinate its interest to the extent necessary for the sales people to earn a reasonable commission.

Closing a dealership is covered in another article. At this point, it is enough to mention that a lender, liquidating foreclosed vehicles, would have to deduct transportation, insurance, storage and auction fees from the forced liquidation sales prices of any vehicles it sold, before receiving any monies itself. Therefore, the amount of a salesperson's commission for selling vehicles, net of the foreclosure costs, would appear to be a good investment, on the part of the lender.

An interesting question arises as to whether or not the lender has an implied duty, knowing the sales people are liquidating the inventory for the benefit of the lender, to inform the sales people that it, the lender, intends to keep all of the gross profit from the sale; and, further, if the lender, knowing it does not intend to allow the sales people to be reimbursed for their efforts, says nothing, do the sales people have an action against the lender?

In any event, the payment of employees (salaried or commissioned) should be made by the dealer from a separate payroll account. The account should be funded under the supervision of the keeper, but the lender's employees should not participate in distributing the funds. Note: Participation in distributing the company payroll could make the lender liable for taxes. 26 USC 3505 and 6672.

Division of the Discretionary Income

Vehicle Income

If a lender maintains a security interest in the dealer's vehicle inventory and if the dealership has collected and spent money for vehicles which have been sold, without reimbursing the lender for those vehicles, then the dealership's gross profits from all future vehicle sales should be applied to reduce the number of sold and unpaid units. The cash profits from such sales should be applied immediately to the lender's debt, such as vehicle gross profit, finance and insurance commissions and service contract profits. Factory rebate money and incentive monies should be assigned to the lender and applied to the borrower's debt only upon receipt of the actual cash.

Service Department Income

Unless the dealership is averaging a 100% service absorption rate of its fixed overhead expense, which is unlikely, trying to operate a dealership on the service department's income will be difficult, if not impossible. If the lender is unable or unwilling to allow these monies to be applied to the general operating fund of the dealership, it means the lender has decided to close the dealership, whether it believes so or not.

The service department monies include gross profits from parts, service, labor and the body shop, if the dealership has one. The percentage of all fixed overhead expenses covered by this profit reversing the dealership's absorption rate.

If the dealership is being sold or closed, these monies should be used to complete the payrolls necessary to accomplish an orderly transition or liquidation.

As always, consult with a qualified attorney whenever dealing with out of trust situations.

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The US Automotive Industry and The Big Three

We have a proud car culture in the United States but, surprisingly, not many people know too much about this country’s automotive history. For this history lesson, we are focusing on the automotive “industry” rather than the history of the automobile itself.

When It All Began

In the 1890s, the American automotive industry began and, thanks to the use of mass-production and the large size of the domestic market, quickly evolved into the largest automotive industry in the world (though this title would be taken from the U.S. by Japan in the 1980s and then from Japan by China in 2008).

The U.S. motor vehicle industry actually started with hundreds of manufacturers, but by the end of the 1920s, three companies stood apart from the rest:

  1. General Motors
  2. Ford
  3. Chrysler

The Big Three

These three companies continued to prosper, even after the Great Depression and World War II. Henry Ford began building cars back in 1896 and started the Ford-Motor Company in 1903. Ford utilized the first conveyor belt-based assembly line in 1913, improving mass production of its Model T. The assembly line decreased costs significantly and the Model T sold so well that it propelled Ford into the largest automobile company in the U.S.

General Motors was founded by William Durant (formerly a carriage maker)n in 1908. In the first couple of years, GM acquired Buick, Oldsmobile, Oakland (later to become Pontiac), Cadillac, and a number of other car companies. Durant also wanted to acquire Ford but Henry Ford opted to keep his company independent. Having become a little to “acquisition-happy,” Durant over-extended the company and was forced out by a group of banks who took controlling interest in the company. Durant then teamed up with Louis Chevrolet and founded Chevrolet in 1913, which became a quick success. Durant retook majority control in GM after acquiring enough stock and GM acquired Chevrolet in 1917. This did not last long, however. Durant was forced out again in 1921. In the late 1920s, GM overtook Ford as the largest automaker.

The former president of Buick and a former executive of GM, Walter Chrysler took control of the Maxwell Motor Company in 1920, revamped it, and reorganized it into Chrysler Corporation in 1925. Chrysler acquired Dodge Brothers in 1927 and, in 1928, introduced the DeSoto and Plymouth brands thanks to the dealer network and manufacturing facilities that came with the Dodge acquisition. By the 1930s, Chrysler overtook Ford and became the second largest automaker.

1950s and Beyond

By 1950, America produced almost 75 percent of all automobiles in the world. At the start of the 1970s, however, U.S. auto companies (especially the Big Three) were severely affected by increased competition from foreign auto manufacturers and high oil prices. In subsequent years, companies bounced back occasionally but the crisis reached its pinnacle in 2008, prompting Chrysler and General Motors to file for bankruptcy reorganization and be bailed out by the federal government. While Ford was also affected by the crisis, it decided to power through on its own and did not take the bail out. We actually have a lot of respect for Ford as a result of this. They did not take the easy way out.

The year 2014 saw saw the biggest (seasonally adjusted annualized) sales in history with 16.98 million vehicles.

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The Need for Hybrid Cars

Since the very conception of the automobile, engineers and designers have been searching for was to make them more efficient and save on fuel consumption. Petrol fuels the majority of vehicles and diesel fuel is used in heavier automotive equipment. The internal combustion engine is considered to be a major if not the biggest source of environmental pollution and the cost of fuel is increasing every day.

With a constant rise in fuel costs and the environmental concerns regarding automobiles, vehicle engineers have had to develop more economical and environmentally safer alternatives to the internal combustion engine that powers most cars. This has led to the birth of the hybrid automobile. These hybrid automobiles offer a number of benefits. The hybrid automobile is a car that is powered by both an electric motor and a gasoline engine. Compared to non hybrid vehicles, the hybrid car saves on the cost of fuel by being more fuel efficient and has a lower rate of fuel consumption.

Hybrid cars operate on a dual mode where the electric motor, powered by batteries, takes over once the gasoline engine has gotten the vehicle up to speed. Braking and deceleration generates energy that is used to charge the electric motor’s batteries. This system allows the hybrid car to provide better fuel efficiency. This also means that the engine of a hybrid vehicle is shut the moment the car is stopped. Considered the biggest advantage to the hybrid car is the reduction of environmental pollution due to fewer emissions of carbon dioxide and other harmful gases in to our atmosphere. Automobile manufactures such as Honda, Toyota, and Ford have already introduced hybrid car models to the commercial market and several others are in development.

Currently there are two types of hybrid vehicles on the market. The first is the “Series” hybrid. A battery powered electric motor powers the Series hybrid car. It also has a gasoline powered engine but it does not singularly power the vehicle. The gasoline engine powers a generator which is used in turn to charge the batteries of the electric motor. The electric motor is left on during the vehicles entire operation however the gasoline engine can be switched on or off depending on the needs of the vehicle. This type of hybrid automobile provides better mileage in city traffic.

The second type of hybrid vehicle on the market is called the “Parallel” hybrid. The Parallel hybrid car, like the Series type, has a gasoline engine and an electric motor. The electric motor and the electric motor can both be used to turn the transmission and power the vehicle. The major difference between the two types of hybrid cars is that the Parallel hybrid uses its electric motor to boost the vehicles power when required to increase the car’s speed. The Parallel hybrid car is considered better suited for the open highway.

Hybrid automobiles provide several benefits due to some very unique features. The construction of the hybrid vehicle uses more lightweight materials than traditional automobile. This saves energy by using less to propel the hybrid car. Hybrid cars also increase energy efficiency because of their more aerodynamic shapes. Tires used by hybrid vehicles run on a higher pressure and are made of a more rigid material than general car tires. The higher pressure helps to increase the vehicles gas mileage per gallon of gasoline used. The overall efficiency of the vehicle is increased by these tires because they reduce friction on road surfaces and provided a grip. The braking system provided an energy transfer from the electric motor to the vehicles batteries when ever the brakes are applied. The overall gas mileage of a hybrid varies from model to model. The EPA test numbers report that the Lexus RX400h receives 31 MPG in the city and 27 MPG the highway while the Honda Insight receives 61 MPG in the city and 68 MPG on the highway.

In conclusion, the future of automobiles is currently the hybrid car and purchasing a hybrid vehicle will not only save you money but will also allow you to take responsibility and do you part in creating a safer, cleaner and greener environment.

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The Automobile in Melody

Historical events are captured in the music of the era. ‘Over There,’ ‘How ‘Ya Gonna Keep ’em Down on the Farm after They’ve Seen Paree, and ‘When Johnny Comes Marching Home’ were some of the Doughboy songs of World War I. Al Jolson singing ‘Brother, Can You Spare a Dime’, and ‘Dust Bowl Blues’ marked the Great Depression. ‘Fightin Side of Me’ revealed the nation’s conflict over Vietnam in the ’60s. So it is only natural that the automobile, which changed American life forever would be immortalized in song and it was.

At first the automobile was only for the wealthy and this was reflected in early sheet music. Even though there were no lyrics, ‘The Swagger’ and ‘Up Broadway’ featured fashionably dressed urban couples with an automobile. Then came the song ‘The Auto Man’ with the lyrics implying that ownership of an automobile indicated wealth and prestige. But along came Henry Ford who pledged to manufacture an automobile that the man on the street could afford and he kept his promise. In October 1908 the first Model T’s, priced at $850, rolled off the assembly line. Over nineteen years of production, its price would drop to $260. The Model T was referred to as the Tin Lizzie and the Flivver and became the subject of many songs. Lizzie is a nickname for Elizabeth and was a popular name for horses at that time.

So then they sang:

Old Zeke Perkins sold his hogs the other day,

The gosh-darned fool threw his money right away;

Rode into town, sittin on a board,

Came home ridin’ in a brand-new Ford!

However, the roads were still designed for horses and did not easily accommodate the speed of the new tin horse so in 1912 along came the song, “Bump, Bump, Bump in Your Automobile.” While the song lyrics emphasized the poor road conditions, one line inferred that women were attracted to male car owners with the words “Molly May said she loved Willie Green. Best of all she loved Willie’s machine.” This theme was repeated in many of the early automobile songs.

And the poor road conditions often resulted in mechanical breakdowns that popularized the tune, ‘Get Out and Get Under’ with the cover sheet depicting a well dressed man under a cabriolet with his legs extended, wrench in hand and his fashionably dressed lady friend in the passenger seat looking down anxiously. The freedom provided by this new invention also carried over to courting customs allowing more opportunities for intimacy and privacy triggering some social anxiety about the relationships between unmarried couples. This together with the liberation of single women in the Roaring 20’s inspired tunes such as ‘Up and Down the Eight Mile Road,’ 1926.

There were also songs about particular models like ‘Cole 30 Flyer’ with the lyrics ‘You will win me Bill, heart and soul, if you buy a Cole.’ These may well have been early attempts at product-placement advertising. Since Ford was producing most of the automobiles of the era, they were popular song subjects. In 1928 when the Model A was introduced, Walter O’Keefe wrote ‘Henry’s Made a Lady out of Lizzie’. Abner Silver and Jack Meskell followed with ‘Poor Lizzie, what will become of you now that your sister is here.’

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A History of Hybrid Cars

As people become more environmentally conscious, gas prices begin to soar, and independence of foreign oil becomes more of a concern, hybrid cars become more and more popular. A hybrid automobile is defined as a vehicle that uses more than one source of fuel. Many of these vehicles use a combination of a typical gas powered internal combustion engine with an electric motor. While these vehicles were quite rare historically, they have only recently become more popular. Many automobile manufacturers now offer a variety of models that use this technology. While these vehicles still rely on gas, they can greatly reduce the amount of fuel used.

When automobiles were still in their infancy around the turn of the century, there were actually quite a bit of electric powered vehicles on the road. At that point, gas-powered vehicles did not dominate the roads in the way that they do now. Hybrid cars did not develop until about one hundred years later, at the beginning of the 21st century. While the first known model was developed in the 1960s, they did not become available until the end of the 20th century. The very first hybrid vehicle was introduced in 1900. It was initially an electric only vehicle, but a gas-powered engine was added to the automobile soon after, making it the first hybrid automobile.

The idea for this kind of double powered vehicle reemerged multiple times over the following decade. These electric and gas powered cars are well known for their better fuel efficiency and their ability to prevent environmentally friendly driving. These vehicles are built much in the same way as conventional gas powered automobiles, but the battery is much more prominent. These batteries are rechargeable, and they are used to power the electric engines that are installed into these vehicles.

While they do still rely on fuel to run, hybrid cars are certainly a step in the right direction. Since electric motors do not use any energy and typically only operate at slower speeds, this can greatly reduce your use of gasoline, particularly if you are only driving below 40 miles per hour. The battery also charges while the car is running, meaning you don’t have to worry about doing any charging yourself. While these vehicles can be a bit expensive, the prices are getting more affordable. Plus, you may be eligible for a tax incentive, and you may find that your savings in gas money will make the investment worth the cost.

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Salvage Cars Significance in Automobile Industry

The business of salvage cars and the parts of such cars contribute to a major part of automotive/automobile industry in the US economy. It has provided jobs for thousands of people not only in US but elsewhere in the world. There are uncountable companies today which make their livelihood out of this business. In this article we will see the practical aspects of salvage car business, precautions to be taken while buying such cars and factors that affect the resale value of such cars.

The salvage titled car is one which faces damage in many ways like a natural calamity like flood or earthquake and mainly by a road accident. Such cars are usually rated with a very less value or even of no value by the insurance companies in the US. The factors that affect this value are the current value of the same car in the market. If the expenditure to repair the damaged car is more than half of its current price, it will be declared as salvage motor.

Then how do such cars get buyers? And how did this salvage business flourish?

Over the period of a decade these cars managed to get a good number of buyers, so much so that the business expanded its reign into the internet world. Not only the auto auctions are held in different parts of the country but also conducted in many websites. The resale value of such cars is individually decided by the buyers but generally, the buyers get carried away with the value declared by the insurance companies.

The reason for this is the extent of damage done to the car. Even after the car is repaired and is ready for use, it is viewed with high suspicions regarding the healthy working of the engine. The buyers generally used to prefer used cars over salvage title cars. Overcoming these hurdles, the automobile auctions performed considerably well in terms of specific salvage cars like Ford and Chevrolet. Sometimes the auto auctions even conduct exclusive ford salvage car auctions and Chevrolet salvage car auctions.

The buyers mainly look at the brand names of automobiles in such cases.

The online presence of this business is through certain websites which allow viewers to actively participate in online auctions and online sale and purchase of repaired cars, damaged cars and salvage title cars. There are two ways of doing this business; one is to buy them and have them in the junkyard. They are also called as Salvage Yards. Owners preserve them in a junkyard and buyers just choose a car of their wish and purchase it. Or even take a few parts from salvage cars and pay only for the parts. This type of business is usually termed as You-Pull-It-Yard. The other way of doing is to buy such cars, repair and sell them or even auction them. There are many companies and individual owners doing this work in their websites.

There are websites which sell reasonably cheap and good salvage cars online; which are mostly privately owned. There are also the US government websites which give information of different used cars like http://www.bar.ca.gov and http://www.vehiclehistory.gov. These are maintained by the government so you need not worry about the duplicate content issues.

As much as it is advantageous and profitable business, certain precautions should be taken while purchasing these cars from dealers. Be careful of fraud dealers who fake the authenticity of the repaired cars. Some tips to value the rates are: find out the exact value assigned by the insurance company of that car before purchasing it, compare the value of salvage car with that of a new car of the same model. By doing this, one will clearly know the genuineness of the proposed rates. Some dealers also include the repair cost into the resale cost. Exclude any such repair costs when you buy salvage cars or salvage auto parts; make sure you clearly have an idea of the market rates of all automobiles.

Find out about more dealers and junkyard from the store locator provided in various websites including the two sites mentioned above.

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Why Act on Windshield Replacement?

Windshields play an essential part in automobiles but a lot of drivers are not aware of this fact. Windshields will serve as structural shield and support for the roofs of automobiles. In addition, windshields will protect drivers and the passengers as well from wind and other elements. Because they play such essential tasks, they must be constructed well and there must not be any room for error during the process of manufacturing. Manufacturers must guarantee the quality of the products before they are going to install them to the automobiles.

On the other hand, hundreds of people pass away every year due to car accidents since they were thrown away from their automobiles. Sadly, a lot of people do not recognize the risks and dangers a simple nick or crack on their windshields can cause. It must not take busted glass across the whole windshield in order to get your attention on your car. When it comes to the repair of auto glass, it is very essential to take the right precautions.

At times, repair is good enough but if the break done is very serious, then, simple repair is out of question. In such cases, windshield replacement will be the best bet. Whether you will admit it or not, windshield replacement is necessary if there is a break which is lesser than three inches. At times, these cracks begin as little as the tip of a needle which can be caused by mechanical stress, temperature deviation and rocks. But regardless of the reasons behind the scratch or crack, it is very important to act on windshield replacements before it will be too late. As mentioned earlier, windshields are there to shelter you from any object flying on the air. Therefore, waiting for too long to replace faulty windshields might actually become a troublesome element of the automobile. More than 12,000 fatalities every year come from individuals who are being thrown away from their cars.

In order to minimize such accidents caused by broken auto glass, windshield replacement is needed. Take enough time in order to shop around to locate reputable service and know the windshield replacement cost. Make sure that the manufacturer have good replacement safety standard and can deliver the service that is worth the cost. Make sure that the quality of the glass is good enough to shelter you from any form of debris falling into your car. It will also be helpful if you are going to contact a technician to find out what kind of services that is good for your car.

Most companies might prefer to arrive to you and they may offer higher price tag yet if they can offer safety standard then it will be worth it. If you are thinking of the price tag, there is a windshield replacement insurance where you can take advantage of. You just have to know what are the needed requirements for the insurance given in your locality. Having windshield replacement insurance will not only help you financially but will ensure that you get standard quality of service.

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Comfort Zone of the Hospital Industry

Space & furniture make up the the room live & ardent. Be it the house or the hospitals, furniture find out its own space under the roofs. The furniture is coordinated well to make the room as a source of comfort. When it comes to choose or to make furniture for the hospitals, the manufacturers & suppliers become a little bit cautious. We proclaim the hospitals as a healthcare institutions where the level of comfort of the furniture become too important. The hospital beds, tables, stretchers & wheel chairs all are made to provide a higher degree of comfort & composure.

Now, the hospital beds, lockers, wheel chairs all work in unison thus keeping the stigma at bay. The stigma is that the the hospital furnitures are cold & sterile, usually supposed. It is the time now to procure the hospital furnitures like trolleys, wheel chairs, pediatric beds and the alike to gain which are easy to clean & repair. When the pediatric beds are taken into account it is suggested that these should have an adjustable head support so that the mother & baby can enjoy the maximum comfort. Similar is true for trolleys & stretchers which are urgently required in emergencies.

People want to be friendly & pretty comfortable with the accessories they are using. The degree of comfort depend upon several factors. Age factor is one of the must taken account. For the young adult, kids & the granny types they have the varying degree of comfort. Perhaps, the granny types want more comfort according to the ailments they have. The hospital beds & examination tables are one of the several examples of the hospital furniture. The right dimension of the hospital beds & the tilted examination tables are the kind of comfort approved furniture. Although a saying goes on “hospital is to die and doctors need not be befriended”. Therefore it is necessary to make the hospital zone to offer the optimum comfort.

It is high time to realize that the hospital furniture procured should give a “look & feel” pattern of home to the patients who are reluctant in spending their course of time in hospitals or in any rehabilitation centers. The patients can’t sustain alone in the hospitals and require someone close to him. The http://www.amtechindia.net/hospital-beds-tables.html ward care beds where the patient is resting reliably even require someone by his side (attendant) for the proper care & help. The attendant bed is required for such attendants. The “look & feel” factor do not come as such. The bedside lockers are offered to keep the belongings as is done in the closet or shelf of the home. The deluxe bed side lockers offer more comfort and ease for the patients & the attendants to keep the belongings.

Similarly the bedside screens give more privacy for them. The foot step & crash cart are again said to be an adjunct of comfort & luxury for the hospital industry. All the accessories are said to be incomplete without mentioning hospital garments and blankets. These hospital garments & blankets come in different patterns to make the patient feel comfortable of what they wear. Totally neat & clean and free from germs, the garments & the blankets incorporate antibacterial protection. At least the patients can flaunt of the cleanness of the garments they use!

In this ultra modern age, progress is prevailing everywhere and in every stuffs…be it the household equipments, heavy machineries or in the hospital industry, the hospital industry has taken a giant leap in the stuffs it is using. The doctors & paramedics are now boosted towards their work. The patients are healed properly & quickly. They are recovering faster. Thanks! To these hospital furniture.

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