For Las Vegas drivers, there’s no such thing as a minor accident

Janice Bullocks’ car accident last August didn’t make the TV evening news or the morning newspaper.

Not serious enough.

No one died after the cars collided at Valley View Drive and Tree Line Drive in East Las Vegas.

And yet Janice Bullocks’ life was forever changed after police said another driver failed to yield the right of way.

The 59-year-old woman who actually enjoyed making schools spick and span for the Clark County School District — she was a custodian for more than 25 years — can’t do it anymore.

Nor can she play with her grandkids at the park.

Or take trips with daughter Nina to see family and friends outside Nevada.

If she stands up for more than 10 minutes, she has to sit.

If she sits down for more than 10 minutes, she has to stand.

“I know what happened to me isn’t as serious as what’s happened to a lot of other people in car wrecks,” Bullocks, a divorced grandmother, says as she sits in the living room of her east Las Vegas home. “But it sure feels serious.”

You can’t help but believe many of the more than 29,000 injured last year in car accidents in Nevada alone feel the same way.

“My life has been turned upside down,” Bullocks said. “This is hard. I just wish people would pay more attention while they’re driving.”

Surely many of the more than 2 million people that the National Highway Traffic Administration reports are injured each year in car wrecks would agree.

People hurt because other drivers are too busy on cellphones, texting, going too fast, or drinking and drugging and driving.

Neither speed nor booze was a factor in Bullocks’ accident. Inattention was.

Those who are injured in accidents may escape becoming one of the more than 30,000 people killed each year on the nation’s roads, but many men, women and children now know far more about pain and suffering than they’d like.

An ambulance took Bullocks to Sunrise Hospital. She stayed there for five days with broken ribs, and head, leg, arm and back injuries.

Doctors found she had short-term memory loss.

A pin was placed in both her right ankle and right wrist.

She spent another 30 days in a rehab hospital, where they gave her speech therapy for her brain injury and tried to help her walk and take care of herself in the restroom.

When she got out of rehab, a hospital bed was placed in the living room of daughter Nina’s home. She got around by wheelchair or walker.

Seven months after she got out of the hospital she was able to ditch the wheelchair and walker. But the pain becomes too great if she stands up for 10 minutes. Unfortunately, her back won’t let her sit much longer.

She’s put on 70 pounds since the accident. “I’m so depressed and I’m eating like I’m still working,” she said. “I don’t like to rely on other people. I raised four kids of my own and eight grandkids.”

What adds to Bullocks’ depression are financial worries. Though her insurance has taken care of virtually all but $9,000 of her $100,000 in medical bills, she couldn’t afford the copays for physical therapy.

Her short-term disability insurance, which gave her around two-thirds of her more than $3,500-a-month salary, ended more than a month ago.

Now she’s waiting for her long-term disability to kick in. Her doctors said she can no longer work.

Unlike many drivers who get large monetary settlements after an accident, Bullocks won’t.

“The other driver had the minimum coverage and Janice had just a bit more,” said Bullocks’ attorney, Kelly Huang. He estimates that he’ll be able to get a $30,000 settlement from the insurance companies. Her kids chipped in a couple thousand dollars so she could get a cheap used car.

“I’m afraid on the road now, ” she said. “I’m thankful my accident wasn’t real serious. I don’t know what I’d do then.”

Paul Harasim’s column runs Sunday, Tuesday and Friday in the Nevada section and Thursday in the Life section. Contact him at or 702-387-5273. Follow @paulharasim on Twitter.

Officer-involved shooting in Nye County
The Nye County Sheriff's Office gives information about a shooting in Pahrump on Thursday night after a man began firing shots outside of his home. (Nye County Sheriff's Office)
Law Enforcement Active Shooter Training Exercise
Multiple Las Vegas Valley law enforcement agencies held an active shooter drill at the Department of Public Safety’s Parole and Probation office on December 6, 2018. Officials set up the training exercise to include multiple active shooters, a barricaded suspect and multiple casualties. (Katelyn Newberg/ Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Public memorial service for Jerry Herbst
Archiving effort hits milestone at Clark County Museum
The Clark County Museum catalogs the final item from the bulk of Route 91 Harvest festival artifacts. (John Przybys/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Pearl Harbor survivor Edward Hall talks about his memories of Dec. 7, 1941
U.S. Army Corps Edward Hall, a 95-year-old survivor of Pearl Harbor talks about his memories of that horrific day. Bizuayehu Tesfaye/Las Vegas Review-Journal @bizutesfaye
Final Route 91 Harvest festival remembrance objects catalogued at Clark County Museum
The last of the more than 17,000 items left at the makeshift memorial near the Las Vegas sign after the Oct. 1 shootings have been catalogued at the Clark County Museum in Las Vegas. The final item was a black-and-white bumper sticker bearing "#VEGASSTRONG. An additional 200 items currently on display at the museum will be catalogued when the exhibit comes down. (K.M. Cannon Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Dozier execution timeline
Scott Dozier was set to be executed July 11, 2018, at the Ely State Prison. Judge Elizabeth Gonzalez delayed the execution.
Grand Jury Indicts Constable for theft
A Clark County grand jury indicted Henderson Constable Earl Mitchell. A Las Vegas Review-Journal investigation prompted the criminal probe. The newspaper found Mitchell wrote himself thousands in checks, took out cash at ATMs and traveled on county funds. He faces four felony counts of theft and a county of public misconduct. Mitchell and his attorney could not be reached for comment.
93-year-old WWII veteran arrested during visit to VA hospital
Dr. S. Jay Hazan, 93, a World War II veteran, talks about his arrest during his visit to VA hospital on Friday, Nov. 30. (Erik Verduzco Las Vegas Review-Journal @Erik_Verduzco_
Pearl Harbor survivor struggles in her senior years
Winifred Kamen, 77, survived the attack on Pearl Harbor as an infant, works a 100 percent commission telemarketing job to make ends meet. (K.M. Cannon Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Las Vegas Metropolitan Briefing 18th street gang
Las Vegas Metropolitan briefs the media on the recent arrests made regarding the 18th street gang.
Man shot in Las Vegas traffic stop had knife, police say
Police said the man fatally shot by an officer during a traffic stop in downtown Las Vegas had a “homemade knife.” Demontry Floytra Boyd, 43, died Saturday at University Medical Center from multiple gunshot wounds after officer Paul Bruning, 48, shot him during a traffic stop. Bruning pulled Boyd over on suspicion of driving recklessly at 7:41 a.m. near Sunrise Avenue and 18th Street.
Catahoula dogs rescued from home in Moapa Valley
Catahoula dogs were brought to The Animal Foundation after being rescued from home in Moapa Valley.
Intuitive Forager Kerry Clasby talks about losses in California wildfire
Intuitive Forager Kerry Clasby talks about losses she suffered in California's Woolsey Fire in Malibu in November. (Al Mancini/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Benefit dinner for Kerry Clasby, the Intuitive Forager
Sonia El-Nawal of Rooster Boy Cafe in Las Vegas talks about having a benefit for Kerry Clasby, known as the Intuitive Forager, who suffered losses on her farm in California’s Woolsey Fire in Malibu. (Al Mancini/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Former President George H.W. Bush dies at 94
Former President George H.W. Bush has died at the age of 94. He died Friday night in Houston, about eight months after the death of his wife, Barbara.
Las Vegans Celebrate Big Snowfall
Las Vegans celebrate big snowfall at Lee Canyon.
Exploring old mines for denim jeans and other vintage items
Caden Gould of Genoa, Nev. talks about his experiences looking for vintage denim jeans and other items in old mines and other places areas across Nevada and the west.
Officers share photo of dead gunman after Las Vegas shooting
A little over an hour after SWAT officers entered Stephen Paddock's suite at Mandalay Bay, Las Vegas police officers far from the scene were already sharing cell phone photos of the dead Oct. 1 gunman.
Frontier jet safely returns to Las Vegas after losing engine piece
Frontier jet safely returns to Las Vegas after losing engine piece. (@FlightAlerts_)
Park Service plans ahead for lower lake levels
National Park Service releases new plans to maintain access to the water as Lake Mead continues to shrink.
Women claim abuse at Florence McClure Women's Correctional Facility
Current and ex-inmates, including Merry West, are suing Florence McClure Women’s Correctional Facility, claiming abuse and inadequate medical care. (Rachel Aston/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @rookie__rae
Butte County Sheriff's Office Body Cam Footage
Bodycam video from Butte County (Calif.) Sheriff's Office Deputy Aaron Parmley, who was in Paradise November 8 helping with evacuations. (Butte County Sheriff's Office)
NDOT construction blasting along State Route 106
NDOT construction blasting along State Route 160, near Mt. Potosi Road, in Clark County as part of a $59 million, 6-mile-long highway widening project that began this summer. (Nevada Department of Transportation)
Car crashes into Papa Murphy's Pizza shop
A driver crashed a car into a western Las Vegas Valley pizza shop on Tuesday morning, police said. (Joe Stanhibel/Special to Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Low-lake-level pumping station nears completion
Barnard Construction and the Southern Nevada Water Authority give one last tour before the new low-lake-level pumping station is activated.
Trailer: Valley of Fires
Sultan’s Playroom from Make-A-Wish Southern Nevada
Make-A-Wish Southern Nevada’s Scott Rosenzweig talks about granting Sultan Bouras Souissi’s wish, and what went into building it. (John Hornberg/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Jim Marsh brings historic replica of rural church to Amargosa Valley
Jim Marsh talks during the opening of the Chapel at Longstreet, a replica of an 1874 Catholic church built in the mining town of Belmont, Nev., at Marsh's Longstreet Casino in Amargosa Valley, Nev. Chase Stevens/ Las Vegas Review-Journal
Las Vegas Livestock recycling Strip food waste
Las Vegas Livestock collects and recycles food from many Las Vegas Strip companies. (Nicole Raz/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
News Headlines
Add Event
Home Front Page Footer Listing
You May Like

You May Like