Personal Injury Lawyer

Personal Injury: Understanding Whiplash

Personal Injury - Whiplash

Personal Injury: Whiplash
Seek medical attention right away and contact an experienced personal injury lawyer, like Tim Louis,
who has the background, compassion, and skill to help you receive the compensation you deserve.

 

Personal Injuries: Understanding Whiplash

Whiplash is a relatively common personal injury caused by a sudden and forced rapid
back-and-forth motion of the head. Most people associate whiplash with a vehicle crash,
however, a personal injury like whiplash can also happen at any time, such as at the workplace, in sports, or from any type of fall or physical trauma. All forms of neck injuries can cause an intense flexing and extension of the neck — and usually involve the muscles, discs, nerves, and tendons.

How Do You Know if You Have Whiplash?

Your doctor will conduct a physical exam, observing your range of motion, and may order an
X-ray, MRI, or CT scan if they suspect you have whiplash or any other injury that has caused
damage to your spinal cord or if you have any other broken bones. In many cases, the injury
occurs within structures too microscopic to be visible on these tests, resulting in relying on
symptoms to tell if a patient has whiplash.

Symptoms of Whiplash

Many people assume that one must be hit hard from the front or behind to experience whiplash,
but in reality, it only takes roughly 5-10 mph speeds to get a jolt hard enough to give you a
serious whiplash injury. Thankfully, whiplash is not life-threatening, but for some several
symptoms can appear days, months, or even years later — leading to a substantially lowered
quality of life for those who suffer from a severe form of whiplash. Common symptoms may
include:

  • Dizziness
  • Fatigue
  • Jaw pain
  • Headache
  • Shoulder stiffness
  • Vision issues
  • Muscle spasms
  • Head and neck pain
  • Decreased range of motion
  • Back pain
  • Insomnia
  • Tinnitus
  • Issues with concentration

If you have been involved in an accident, ensure that you seek medical attention right away.
Even if you do not experience any of the above symptoms, it can take 48 hours or longer for
whiplash symptoms to present themselves after an injury. In more severe and chronic cases of
“whiplash associated disorder” symptoms may include:

  • Depression
  • Frustration and anger
  • Anxiety and stress
  • Possible drudge dependency
  • Post-traumatic stress syndrome (PTSD)
  • Insomnia

How Long Will Your Neck Hurt After An Accident?

Most people recover from whiplash within a couple of weeks up to a few months. However,
there is no specific timeline with regards to how long symptoms will last after a whiplash or any
other personal injury. Everyone is unique, and healing times can depend on the severity of the
injury, and whether scar tissue has formed — leading to other chronic issues such as disc
herniation and lifelong pain.

While some people may never experience symptoms after an injury, others may live with excruciating pain for weeks, months, or even years. Any severe neck injury requires ongoing medical attention and care, which can get expensive and should be taken into consideration related to your injury claim.

How is Whiplash Treated?

Your doctor may prescribe muscle relaxers and or anti-inflammatories to manage pain and
inflammation. Ice is often recommended for the first 24 hours after injury, and later, applying
heat may help loosen up tightened muscles and knots. For more serious whiplash injuries,
physical therapy may be recommended to help regain strength and range of motion. Studies
have shown that stretching and rotating the neck muscles is a more effective form of therapy.
Medical professionals now recommend this form of controlled movement as opposed to
immobilizing the neck in a soft cervical collar, which was the recommended option in the past.

How Can Personal Injury Lawyer Tim Louis Help With Your Whiplash Personal Injury?

Patients with minor symptoms may find that whiplash pain goes away within days or weeks.
However, those with more severe symptoms may require medical attention and extensive
therapy for pain relief and recovery. If you or a loved one is suffering from whiplash, your injury
may be more serious than you expected. Seek medical attention right away and contact an
experienced personal injury lawyer, like Tim Louis, who has the background, compassion, and skill to help you
receive the compensation you deserve. Delaying your personal injury case may be detrimental
to your future.

Contact our team today by calling 604-732-7678 or email Tim Louis at timlouis@timlouislaw.com for a no-obligation, free consultation. We’re on your side.

Social Media and Your ICBC Claim

social media

Social Media and Your ICBC Claim

These days, who doesn’t have a social media account? While social media was once a place where college students kept each other updated on their day-to-day lives, now even grandparents are on Facebook. Many have become addicted to posting every aspect of their lives without thinking about who might view their social media activity.

Potential Damage to Your Personal Injury ICBC Claim

investigatingAs of 2010, ICBC set up their Special Investigations and Cyber Unit to help reduce potentially exaggerated or fraudulent claims.

If you have been injured in a vehicle accident, it’s safe to say that ICBC’s adjusters and investigators will be digging deeper into your background and accessing your Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and/or YouTube accounts. Any inconsistencies can hurt your credibility and claim. For instance, ICBC adjusters and investigators will examine what you are saying on social media to people treating you versus what you are saying to ICBC adjusters on record. Any inconsistencies between what you are saying to family and friends on social media versus what you are telling on ICBC will be examined.

This skilled team conducts deep searches on social media sites seeking photos and updates on individuals who claim that they have been unable to work due to their injuries, and then contradict their claim by posting photos or updates of themselves being physically active.

Best Ways to Protect Your Claim Via Social Media

The first step is to be aware – the next step is to take the provisions necessary to ensure you don’t damage your ICBC claim. We have compiled a list of tips to help ensure that you don’t potentially damage your ICBC claim. It’s always a good idea to contact your personal injury lawyer who will provide you with tips:

  • googleSearch your name in Google for anything you feel ICBC may use against your claim.
  • Applying strict privacy settings to your social media account will not necessarily keep your account private and inaccessible to outsiders. It is a fact that ICBC can gain access to private social media accounts by court order.
  • Be aware when posting on any social media platform. Understandably, you want to share positive moments in your daily life with family and friends – however take great care in realizing that once ICBC has gained access to your private accounts, anything they deem to be inconsistent with your claim may be used against you in court.
  • Some people do not realize that Facebook owns Instagram. Ensure that you go through both accounts and delete any content that may be deemed harmful to your ICBC case (contact your lawyer before deleting photos or content).
  • Do not accept friend requests from people you do not know.
  • Do not post any personal thoughts, conversations, information or any photos in relation to your case.
  • Keep your family and friends in the loop and ask them not to post or tag you in any photos.
  • You should obtain legal advice before deactivating or deleting your Facebook account as ICBC may accuse you of destroying relevant evidence.

Let An Experienced Personal Injury Lawyer Handle your ICBC Claim

If you have any questions or concerns about the use of social media in a personal injury claim, we have the expertise and knowledge necessary so you don’t have to worry about saying or doing anything that may jeopardize your claim. Contact our compassionate and experienced legal team at Tim Louis Law & Associates.

To book your free consultation, call 604-732-7678 or email timlouis@timlouislaw.com. We’re here to help.

Sources:
https://www.icbc.com/about-icbc/Pages/fraud.aspx
https://www.straight.com/article-256851/tim-louis-beware-icbc-trolling-through-yourfacebook-photos

Most Common Airbag Injuries

airbag injuries

Airbag Injuries

Airbags have been designed to quickly deploy in a vehicle collision to protect your upper body and head from hitting the steering wheel or dashboard. Airbags can prevent injury and saves lives. However, injuries can happen – whether it is from airbag malfunction or improper positioning in a vehicle, it’s essential to recognize that personal injuries may still occur.

Where are Vehicle Airbags Located?

Front airbags are situated in the steering wheel hub of the vehicle and the passenger-side dashboard. In newer cars, airbags are located in the front and on the sides. Side airbags have been designed to protect occupants from side impact during rollover accidents. If you have airbags in your vehicle, ensure that you are familiar with airbag
locations and safety requirements by reading your vehicle owner’s manual before installing child restraint car seats.

How Do Airbags Work?

air bag warning stickerA vehicle collision results in rapid deceleration, which triggers the front airbags. Nitrogen gas is produced, resulting in inflation at speeds of roughly 300Km/hour in order to protect your head and chest in a high-speed collision. Seatbelts are usually enough to protect the driver and front passenger in a low-speed collision – protecting the occupant’s chest and head. However, it is important to note that it is uncommon for front airbags to deploy in rear-end collisions, rollovers, or side-impact accidents. During these types of crashes, the side airbags deploy, providing protection between vehicle occupants and the doors.

What Causes Airbag Injuries?

A number of injuries have resulted from faulty airbag deployment or during regular operation of the front and side airbags. There have been cases of airbag deployment without the vehicle being turned on or running at all. The intensity of airbag inflation is another cause of personal injury resulting from airbag deployment. In fact, airbags are inflated with such force that the metal casing surrounding it may produce shrapnel, causing injury.

  • Airbags may deploy at the wrong time
  • Airbag deployment in a low-impact collision
  • The crash sensor may fail to deploy the airbag when needed
  • Only one airbag deploys
  • The airbag may deploy too late (timing of airbag deployment is important. Even if the airbag deploys a fraction of a second too late, it could cause serious personal injury to the driver and occupant).

What Injuries Can Airbags Cause?

Airbag deployment may lead to a range of injuries. The chemicals used within the device, the rate of the airbag deployment, airbag design, and lack of seatbelt use all play a role in airbag-related injuries. While rare, airbag injuries have the potential to cause significant trauma:

  • Facial Injuries
  • Chest Injuries
  • Neck & Back Injuries
  • Burns to the chest, arms, and hands
  • Skull, rib cage, face, arm, and wrist fractures
  • Concussions, brain swelling and bruising as well as loss of consciousness
  • Asthma attacks and other throat irritations
  • Eye injuries
  • Trauma to the ear that may lead to hearing loss
  • Internal bleeding
  • Fetal injury in pregnant women

How to Minimize Airbag Injuries

seat beltYou can reduce the risk of an airbag injury in an accident by taking these precautions when you drive your vehicle:

  • Always wear a seatbelt
  • Children under 12 should always ride in the back seat
  • Ensure that seats are at least 10” back from the front dash of your vehicle (airbag deployment area)
  • Check your vehicle’s model and year for any airbag-related recalls
  • Ensure you are using the correct car seat for your child’s height and weight.
  • Children should be properly secured and in the proper-seated position at all times.
  • If possible, avoid driving if you are pregnant
  • Do not place your arms across the steering wheel
  • Tilt the steering wheel downward, toward your chest – not your neck or head
  • Place both front seats as far as possible and as comfortable for safe driving
  • Do not install rear-facing infant restraints in the passenger seat.

What Steps Should I Take if An Airbag Malfunctions?

  • Preserve the evidence related to the airbag (parts)
  • Ensure the vehicle’s computer doesn’t get wiped
  • Do not transfer the vehicle over to ICBC, mechanic or junkyard

Contact A Trusted, Experienced Personal Injury Lawyer

If you are suffering injuries sustained in a vehicle accident from an airbag malfunction or deployment, contact our compassionate and experienced legal team at Tim Louis Law and Associates to book your free consultation today by calling 604-732-7678 or email Timlouis@timlouislaw.com

source:
https://www.icbc.com/about-icbc/newsroom/Documents/airbags.pdf

Motorcycle Safety Tips in Metro Vancouver

Motorcycle Safety Tips

Motorcycle Safety Tips

Motorcycle enthusiasts are looking forward to the freedom that comes with riding on the open road and beginners may be shopping around for their dream bike to take on the road this spring and summer. However, the facts cannot be ignored: according to ICBC, in 2016, 940 motorcyclists were injured in 1500 crashes. On average, 12 motorcyclists are killed each year in the lower mainland.

We’ve gathered some safety tips to ensure motorcyclists are as safe as possible while riding.

Prepare Your Motorcycle for Safety

You can have years of motorcycle riding experience, but if your bike has mechanical issues, nothing will prevent you from getting into an accident resulting in a severe injury.

  • Always inspect your bike before every ride
  • Ensure tires don’t have bulges or cracks
  • Tire pressure should be at the proper level
  • Check to make sure your horn and turn signals are working
  • Ensure mirrors are in the appropriate position for blind spots
  • Check fluid levels weekly
  • Make sure your brakes, throttle, and clutch are working properly
  • Check for leaks

Always Wear Proper Riding Gear

motorcycle safetyYou may be tempted to wear your casual wear before jumping on your motorcycle, but think about the injuries you could prevent by wearing adequate riding gear that was designed for sudden impact. If you are in an accident, the friction from your body against the pavement alone can cause serious damage if you don’t take the necessary precautions.

Even if you are driving a short distance it’s integral that you wear the proper riding gear to protect your entire body in the event of an accident:

  • Wear adequate riding gloves, not standard work gloves. Riding gloves are made to protect your hands from trauma; while work gloves are made from thinner, weaker materials and will not protect you.
  • Always protect your head! Wear a full-face helmet to cover your face and head from possible injury.
  • Wear proper riding pants designed for motorcycle riding – you may see a lot of riders out there wearing regular jeans, but if you are in a motorcycle accident, regular pants will not protect your legs from injury.
  • Wear riding boots designed for motorcycle riding, not regular boots or shoes

Follow Traffic Rules & Ride Defensively

Of course, years of riding experience and motorcycle training can make all the difference in road safety, but be sure always to follow these driving tips whether you are a beginner or experienced motorcycle rider:

  • Always let drivers know your intentions by using your turn signals
  • Do your best to stay out of driver’s blind spots
  • Ride at a safe speed at all times
  • Never assume a driver has seen you or will give you the right-of-way

Don’t Ride When Impaired or Sleepy

Driving requires an alert mind, and a steady hand, which is why driving impaired is known to be one of the most dangerous decisions you can make as a driver – but what many people, especially new drivers may not realize, is that driving while tired can be just as dangerous, even fatal in some circumstances.

Know the Common Signs of Drowsiness:

  • Frequent yawning
  • Inability to keep your eyes open
  • Trouble holding your head up
  • Wandering thoughts
  • Drifting into another lane
  • Missing road signs or driving past turns

Motorcycle Safety: Follow these steps to prevent driver’s fatigue from setting in:

  • Get a full night’s sleep before a planned trip
  • Take short naps throughout the day whenever possible if you need them, especially on long trips
  • Avoid consuming caffeine or other stimulants before bed
  • Call for a ride or take a taxi if you’re too tired to drive

In addition, do your best to avoid these common driver’s mistakes:

  • Driving when on medication that causes drowsiness
  • Driving late at night, at times when you are usually sleeping
  • Driving alone if you are going a longer than usual distance

Tim Louis and his compassionate and talented legal team can give you the reliable, trusted advice you need and can deal with ICBC on your behalf. If you or your loved one has been injured in a motorcycle accident in Metro Vancouver and would like to consult with our legal team who will do everything they possibly can to get you the personal injury settlement you deserve, contact us today for a free consultation at 604-732-7678.

source:
https://www.icbc.com/about-icbc/newsroom/Pages/2017-May1.aspx
https://www.icbc.com/road-safety/sharing/motorcycle-safety/Pages/Default.aspx

Spring Road Safety in Metro Vancouver

Spring has officially arrived and it’s time to consider road safety. With longer days ahead, it’s time to give that car a wash, remove your vehicle’s winter tires and enjoy the milder spring weather.

We’re not entirely out of the woods quite yet though – considering British Columbia’s temperate rainforest climate, heavy rain can always creep up on us in the spring. Keeping your vehicle in tip-top shape for unforeseen weather is essential along with practicing safe driving habits.

Road Safety: Prepare Your Vehicle

With snow, ice and slush on the roads this past winter, you may have put extensive wear on your brake pads, wheels and or clutch. Take your vehicle in to your local trusted mechanic for a spring tune-up, where your vehicle’s essential fluids will be topped up, wheels changed/rotated, and any other replacements you may need for safe driving:

  • Brake pads, fluids topped up and/or rotors replaced
  • Tire rotation, change and or inflation
  • Anti-freeze fluid replaced with coolant
  • Battery check
  • Oil filter change
  • Clean windows and replace wiper blades
  • Check all lights including headlights, taillights and brake lights, turn signal blinkers and parking lights.

Be Patient While Driving

road safetyDrivers must follow the posted speed limits on BC roads. However, with the warmer weather, drivers may become less cautious. Remember, just because the roads are clear of rain and ice does not mean roads are without potential hazards. Plan your route to prevent speeding, drop your speed when necessary and be aware of other drivers around you. Leaving a safe distance around your vehicle is the best way to keep safe while driving and ensure you plan your route ahead of time to prevent the urge to speed to your destination.

Watch Out for Pedestrians

With warmer weather, come more pedestrians, cyclists, and animals on the road. Remember what you learned in driving school: follow posted speed limits on highways, residential streets and in school zones. Always scan the intersection before passing through and stop at crosswalks — giving pedestrians the right of way. Blind spots are a significant hazard – cyclists and pedestrians may be out of view through your mirrors, so always make sure you shoulder check.

Road Safety and Cyclists

Share the Road – Road Safety Tips

As BC weather continues to improve, more cyclists will be commuting to work or for recreation. Keep in mind that cyclists in BC share the same rights and responsibilities as motorized vehicles.

  • Keep a safe distance. Stay at least 1 meter away from a cyclist when passing and maintain at least 3 seconds behind a cyclist on the road.
  • Don’t get distracted. Make eye contact with cyclists if you can and always keep a lookout – especially in densely populated areas
  • Dooring can be deadly. According to ICBC, 1 in 14 vehicle collisions involving cyclists are the result of dooring. Always shoulder check — keeping an eye out for oncoming cyclists before opening vehicle doors.
  • Yield to Cyclists Always signal in advance if you need to pull over or cross a bike lane, and of course, always yield to cyclists.
  • Look Ahead You should always make a habit of shoulder checking for cyclists before turning right and keep an eye out for oncoming cyclists when turning left. Scan for cyclists before you enter a street from an alley or out of a spot where it’s difficult to see clearly. Stay cautious.

Watch Out for Wild Life – Road Safety

road safety and wildlifeSpring is the time of year when wild animals begin foraging for food and may need to cross a busy roadway. Keep an eye out for any animal crossing signs, scan highways and roads for wildlife and reduce your speed if necessary. It’s important to note that animals are active all day and if you are about to hit an animal while behind the wheel, try to strike wildlife on an angle to prevent the animal from passing through your windshield.

Hurt In An Accident? Tim Louis Law Can Help

Tim Louis and his compassionate and talented legal team can give you the solid, trusted advice you need and can deal with ICBC on your behalf. If you or your loved one has been injured in a motor vehicle accident in Metro Vancouver and would like to consult with our legal team who will do everything they possibly can to get you the personal injury settlement you deserve, contact us today for a free consultation at 604-732-7678 or email timlouis@timlouislaw.com

source:
https://www.icbc.com/about-icbc/newsroom/Pages/2016May25.aspx

Common Workplace Injuries

Prevent Workplace Injuries

When we think about workplace injuries, what often comes to mind are high-risk occupations in construction, manufacturing, or those dealing with hazardous materials – but the fact is, workplace injuries happen across all industries, in all occupations – and most of them are entirely preventable with proper care and preparation.

workplace injuries

Workplace Injuries

Although the types of injury commonly sustained at work are as numerous as the number of jobs that can be listed – some of the more common and preventable injuries are:

Strains/Sprains

These types of injuries also referred to as “repetitive strain injuries (RSI)” or “musculoskeletal disorders” are very common workplace injuries due to the number of occupations dealing with repetitive tasks throughout the day.

Some of the more frequent causes of these injuries can include:

  • Repetitive or vigorous movement over long periods of time
  • Lack of movement/holding your posture or limbs in an unnatural position for long periods
  • Overusing a particular group of muscles
  • Poor posture or a non-ergonomically designed workspace

Back Injuries

back pain

Injuries related to the back are common among numerous occupations and can have an affect — both personally and professionally, long after the initial injury itself. Some of the more common factors resulting in back-related injury can include:

  • Repetitive lifting or moving of heavy objects, reaching or bending
  • Sustained whole-body vibration or jarring from the use of machinery
  • Poor posture, improper or inadequate back support seating in the workplace
  • Prolonged periods of inactivity

Head Injuries

A head injury can be serious and can lead to contusions, hematomas (bleeding in the brain), and concussions. Unfortunately, it’s not uncommon in the workplace –, especially in manufacturing and construction industries. ‘Closed’ head injuries do not pierce the skull and “open” head injuries happen when an object has pierced through the skull, causing possible brain injury. Generally, recovery time may be longer than other common workplace injuries, although most people fully recover from minor to moderate head injuries.

Some of the more frequent causes:

  • Being hit by falling or flying objects
  • Slipping or tripping and falling
  • Falling from above such as tumbling down stairs or falling off a ladder
  • Walking into objects such as a wall, cabinet or glass window

Herniated/Bulging Discs

Both herniated and bulging discs can affect a person’s nerves, tendons, muscles, and joints. These are common injuries and can result from repetitive motion trauma and or soft tissue disorders resulting from a workplace injury. If you injure your back or neck, a spinal disc can move out of place and can bulge outward from between the vertebrae — putting pressure on spinal nerves. Sciatica (nerve pain radiating down one leg) is a
common symptom of a herniating disc injury, as well as numbing, tingling pain in the legs and weakness in the back and legs.

Some of the more frequent causes of these injuries can include:

  • Heavy lifting and overexertion
  • Hard blows to the lower back
  • Ongoing, repetitive motion
  • Sitting for extended periods of time in an awkward position
  • Slip, trip or fall

PREVENTION:

workplace safety

With a little care and consideration, most of the workplace injuries we’ve listed can be prevented with proper understanding and preparation. Some of the methods for preventing these common injuries are:

  • Proper lifting techniques
  • Make exercise a part of your daily routine
  • Listen to your body
  • Pay attention to posture and form
  • Proper protective gear such as helmets to protect the head from injury
  • Safety training, preparation, and education on behalf of the employer

These common workplace injuries can have a lasting impact on one’s health and quality of life. If you or a loved one has experienced a serious injury while on the job, contact Tim Louis and his compassionate and experienced legal team today: 604-732-7678

Common Personal Injuries Following a Traffic Accident

personal injury

Personal Injuries from Car Accidents

If you or someone you care about has recently been in an automobile accident, you may wonder how severe or how common your injury is – should you go ahead and pursue a claim?

The simple fact is you may not feel pain immediately following an auto collision. Symptoms and pain may start to creep up on you weeks or even months later. That’s why it is crucial to have a thorough medical exam as soon as possible following any type of vehicular accident.

 

Common Personal injuries Following a Traffic Accident:

Neck Injuries

Neck injuries are often one of the most common complaints after an automobile accident.

Whether the impact to the vehicle is minimal or severe, the neck can be one of the most sensitive parts of the body and is easily affected by any type of collision.

Whiplash is the most common as the head shakes to the side or backwards; an extreme amount of pressure is put on ligaments – causing soft tissue damage that results in strains or sprains. Pain is not always felt immediately as symptoms can be overlooked due to shock and heavy adrenaline coursing through the body following a crash. It is important to get checked out by a medical professional immediately.

Spinal Cord/Back Injuries

Damage to the spinal cord, whether it is slight or serious, can cause significant nerve damage and in extreme cases can cause permanent paralysis. Examples of other serious spinal injuries include herniated discs, fractures, sprains and lumbar disc injuries. Don’t underestimate even mild back pain following an accident! Symptoms may surface weeks or even months after an auto collision.

Internal Injuries

crash test collision

The sudden impact from a collision can cause severe damage to internal organs and may have serious implications such as damage to the spleen, lungs, heart, kidneys, bowels or liver amongst others.

Rib fractures are also quite common. Such fractures may lead to other injuries, resulting in punctured lungs and other organs. Internal injuries can be fatal, so it is important to get checked out by a medical professional immediately after a traffic accident.

Head & Brain Injuries – personal injuries from a car accident

Head and brain injuries are some of the most common and most debilitating injuries suffered by passengers and drivers of automobile accidents. Symptoms can be mild to severe depending on where a person is located in the vehicle and the level of violent force impacted to the skull. Even without physical signs of trauma such as cuts or bruises, sudden force to the head can cause damage to the brain – which is why it is important to seek medical attention straight away.

Facial Injuries

Facial injuries are common and can result from hitting the dashboard, steering wheel, windshield, airbag, side window, back seat or shattered glass. The severity of injury varies ranging from minor cuts and bruises to jaw fractures and can even cause serious dental injuries.

Psychological Injuries

stressRegardless of any physical injuries that result from a traumatic auto collision, emotional distress is very real and can easily be overlooked when the focus is on visual signs of trauma. Everyone responds to stress differently and depending on how severe the crash; anxiety, depression, panic attacks and post-traumatic stress disorder can all be the direct result of an auto accident.

Personal injuries as the result of an automobile collision should never be taken lightly as the long-term effects of a serious injury can be devastating to one’s quality of life.

You can trust Tim Louis & Company to ensure the best possible outcome for your personal injury case. Contact us today (604) 732-7678 or email timlouis@timlouislaw.com

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