Construction sites are always dangerous places, even for workers, due to the many different hazardous factors present and used or operated within their vicinities. These include dangerous and flammable substances, sharp and heavy tools, heavy machinery, dangerous fumes and dust, and exposed electrical wiring; one may also include the high places where construction workers need to do their assigned work.
State and federal government entities are fully aware of the various dangers construction workers (as well as many other workers) are exposed to. Thus, due to workplace dangers, the Occupational Safety and Health Act was passed into law in 1970; this Act, in turn, gave birth to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) in 1971, a federal agency tasked to enforce safety and health standard laws in all workplaces.
Since the OSHA came into existence in 1971, it has made an impact in the industrial field, reducing the number of workplace injuries by 67% and deaths by 65%. Thus, while the 1970s registered as many as 38 worker deaths per day, the strict implementation of OSHA rules, especially during the last few years, has resulted to about only 12 fatal accidents in construction sites beginning in 2012. Still a loss of many lives, but definitely so much lower compared with the past decades.
Some of the safety standards that OSHA enforces, in construction sites particularly, are proper lighting all throughout the construction area, adequate worker protection against falls and falling objects, wearing of personal protective equipment (PPE), safe and sturdy stairways and ladders, use of reliable and properly assembled scaffoldings, 2A rating fire extinguishers every 3000 square feet, body-flushing and eye-washing facilities within 25 feet of battery-changing areas, properly displayed and clearly visible accident-prevention signs, which ought to be removed when hazard no longer exists in the area, and ground fault-circuit interrupters (GFCIs).
Accidents that construction workers may sustain during the performance of their work, especially those resulting from their co-workers’, supervisor’s or employer’s direct violation of the safety and health standard laws, may be considered personal injuries, injuries that are product of someone else’s negligence or carelessness. Though injured workers (or those who develop work-related illnesses due to exposure to hazardous substances, even if the illness becomes apparent months or years after the worker has already resigned or retired from work) may apply for the Workers’ Compensation Insurance benefit, they also have the right to file a claims lawsuit against their employer. One of the conditions stipulated in the Workers’ Comp is freedom of the employer from further legal responsibility once the injured worker avails of the benefit. On this regard, it is highly advisable that a worker who gets hurt in an accident seek the help of a lawyer, who has full knowledge of, and experience in, personal injury laws and lawsuits, respectively, and who can advise him/her about the legal rights he/she has regarding lawsuits and compensation for whatever damages the injury or illness would result to.
Posted by Victor on Oct 13, 2016 in Personal Injury | 0 comments
“Hot work” is the term used to refer to people whose jobs regularly expose them to heat and danger. These individuals include those who work in construction sites, railroads, mines, chemical plants, liquefied petroleum exchange plants, restaurants, hotels, and so forth.
To these workers, especially those whose work take them to gas or propane exchange plants, the possibility of an explosion accident is one big risk that they face every day. 2010 records released by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics show 187 lives lost due to a fire and an explosion in a propane plant. In July of 2013, another propane explosion, which injured eight workers, wreaked great damage in a refilling plant and which required residents within a half-mile from the explosion site to evacuate, occurred somewhere in Florida.
Though a highly combustible and dangerous gas, propane, which can be made into liquefied petroleum gas, is a very common fuel used in American homes and commercial buildings. People use it to cook food, barbecue, heat their homes and fuel engines. To avoid possible occurrences of propane explosion, propane systems and propane-powered appliances should be checked by qualified service technicians regularly. Home owners and residents should also avoid using propane grills inside their homes or in small and enclosed areas; they also should never use damaged propane cylinders or tanks.
It only requires a small amount of propane for an explosion to occur. Thus, if there is any hint or suspicion of propane leak, you should never switch on or use any device or appliance which causes a spark.
Besides home use, the Milwaukee personal injury attorneys of Habush Habush & Rottier S.C. ® mention the use of this gas in a wide variety of industries, from glass companies to brick kilns to agricultural centers. In these environments, propane is often stored in larger containers, making the potential for a large explosion even greater. If a propane tank isn’t properly cared for, a leak could develop that the smallest spark could set off.
An explosion, especially if this occurs in a workplace, can result to innocent workers getting injured and being made to suffer extremely painful injuries that can alter their condition and activities for the rest of their lives. Though the results of an explosion accident may be irreversible, it will somehow be a relief for the injured worker to know that he/she will be paid the full amount of compensation that will allow him/her get the medical treatment needed and which will help see to his/her family’s daily needs.
Posted by Victor on Jul 20, 2016 in Boat Accidents | 0 comments
Where there are motorized vehicles, then one thing is most likely to happen: accident.
Way back in the early 1900s, people already saw that cars were bound to crash; this is why carrying auto insurance was made a mandate. Motorcycle, car and truck accidents are not the only causes of accidents, however, ships and boats, have, for so long, even longer than any motor vehicle on land, been causes of injuries and death to so many men, even during ancient times.
Today, the U.S. Coast Guard, as one of its many functions, makes a compilation of all reported recreational boating accidents in the U.S. In 2015, for instance, it counted 4,158 accidents that resulted to 626 deaths and 2,613 injuries. This 626 deaths is much higher than the 2013 and 2014 records, which were at 560 and 610, respectively.
According to the U.S. Coast Guard, the top five leading contributing factors to accidents are operator inexperience, operator inattention, improper lookout, excessive speed and alcohol. Operator inexperience, specifically, has been the leading cause of boating accidents all across the U.S. for almost two decades now. Boating is a totally fun and adventure-filled activity; however,operating a boat without having proper knowledge about its safe operation and proper attitude while on water can be dangerous even to experienced operators.
Boat operators have a lot to learn, including boating laws and regulations, rules on navigation, what to do in a weather-related emergencies, and knot tying among others. The U.S. Coast Guard advises operators to take a boating education class where they will learn all the basics, and the dos and don’ts of boating. While taking this education class is not really required for operating a watercraft in some states, having the knowledge on how to have a safe and enjoyable time on the water may reduce the likelihood of getting into an accident.
The Clawson & Staubes law firm mentions and explains in its website some of the laws boat operators will need to observe while on waters. It also explains what legal action a person can pursue in the event an accident does occur due to the carelessness or negligence of someone else.
Posted by Victor on Mar 8, 2016 in Elder Issues | 0 comments
Hospice is not a situation anyone wants to find themselves in. This form of senior care is usually reserved for those with chronic illness and is intended to soothe the patient as they enter the final stages of their life. Assuring the patient is comfortable is the number one goal of hospice care.
When a patient enters hospice care, they usually only have six months to a year to live. Common chronic illnesses that place a patient in hospice care include cancer, dementia, heart disease, lung disease, and more. This a difficult time of transition the patient enters the final stages of their life. Hospice seeks to ease this stress and allows you to focus on spending time with your loved one. Allow hospice care to not only bring comfort to loved one, but you as well.
If the patient has uncontrolled and sudden symptoms, inpatient care can assure that a trained hospice staff is constantly with them. This gives you the peace of mind that if a medical emergency were to occur, your loved one would be in good hands. If your loved one prefers to stay in their home and they have symptoms controlled by medication, routine home care could prove to be a good option as it promotes the feeling of normalcy.
Hospice allows for a family to focus on creating positive final memories with their loved one instead of having to focus solely on giving them the medical attention the need in their final stage of life. This allows for easier days for the whole family. Hospice care provides an unmatched sense of peace at a time when things are usually uncertain and scary.
According to SeniorAdvice.com, “between 1.5 million and 1.6 million individuals are currently receiving some form of hospice treatment,” showing the importance of understanding and being aware of this form of care as an option for your loved one when everything else seems uncertain.
If there is one type of vehicle which can be the most dangerous to drive, that could be motorcycles. According to the website of Houston personal injury lawyers, bicycle accidents account for many road-related injuries and deaths in the country. In fact, the U.S. Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration even revealed that when you are riding a motorcycle, you are 35 times more prone to fatal accidents than those riding in cars.
To protect yourself from debilitating and fatal injuries brought about by a motorcycle-related accident, always keep in mind these simple tips:
Check before you go
Just like any other vehicles, you should check the condition of your motorcycle before hitting the road. You can do a front-to-end inspection of your bike, starting from the headlight to its brake light.
Invest in good bicycle components
You may consider investing in anti-lock braking system (ABS), which works pretty much the same as that of cars. ABS prevents your wheels from locking up during a hard brake, preventing you from skidding and losing control of your bike. Good tires and quality head and tail lights are also needed for a safe ride.
Protect your head, always
Buying a good helmet is one thing; wearing it is another. You might be tempted not to wear a helmet, especially when you are just driving three to four blocks to get your groceries. However, because accidents are never expected, you should be on guard at all times.
Remember that you are a vehicle
Your motorcycle is a motorized vehicle, which means you should adapt a driver common sense and act in accordance with the traffic rules and regulations. However, you should also remember that you are more vulnerable than four-wheeled cars around you, so you have to be extra cautious and more defensive when driving.
Learn more about driving
Joining in a motorcycle club near your area can help you learn more about motorcycle safety tips. Some organizations offer free riding course, which gives you an opportunity to further hone your skills.
A car chase, car racing on busy roads or highways and driving on the opposite lane to avoid any pursuers, especially cops, are very exciting scenes in movies; these scenes, sometimes, could even make one wish that he/she were in the lead car’s driving seat instead of the actor (or the stuntman).
One has keep in mind, however, that all such scenes are coordinated and that all the actors and stuntmen involved are protected with the proper gear against any untoward incident. Do any of those scenes in real life and you can very well expect that an accident will occur; even professional car racers during tournaments are prone to the most dangerous accidents – and these are perfectly trained where driving is the concern.
It is obvious, though, that many drivers are either just too courageous or irresponsible whenever they hit the road (such courage, however, is very much out of place). Due to these unwanted road behaviors, millions of accidents happen every year, severely injuring more than a million and taking the lives of as many as 35,000 innocent victims.
The US National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and all traffic safety enforcers in all 50 states work untiringly to try to keep roads and highways free from accidents, or at least significantly reduce its number. Despite some degrees of success, authorities know that there are plenty of things that still need to be accomplished.
Some moves by the government have been to make the penalties of traffic violation harsher, put up check points where sobriety tests may be conducted, pass and enforce new laws, and so forth. There are times, however, when enforcers become overzealous in their job, making charges where one is never necessary.
The different traffic violations a driver can be charged with include, speeding, distracted driving, reckless driving and, the one which many drivers try hard to keep free from, driving under the influence or DUI.
Drinking and driving. Everyone knows that these two things will never be an acceptable pair. The only surprising thing is that even the kindest people, persons respected in their career and community, or those who are known as conscientious and responsible, have been and can be guilty of driving while under the influence – just like anybody else.
One can only be sure that these people mean no harm and are confident that, with due care, they will get home safely, without causing anyone trouble. Thus, they drive as safely as they can, sometimes, even as slowly as possible. The only big problem is, driving slow is one of the signs of drunk-driving, according to traffic enforcers.
According to the webpage for San Jose DUI lawyer Daniel Jensen, Attorney at Law, a DUI charge is a serious matter. To defend yourself, you will almost certainly need the help of an attorney. Not all lawyers, however, have the same depth of knowledge about their area of practice. The extent of experience can also be an advantage in such serious matters.
Posted by Victor on May 25, 2015 in Product Liability | 0 comments
A good doctor and a medicine that works! What else can be better for someone complaining of a serious health condition? Through technological advancement, pharmaceutical companies are able to develop many different products, like medicines or drugs, medical devices and surgical supplies that can effectively remedy general and specific health issues. But, before being allowed for public use, these products will first have to be approved by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and one FDA requirement prior to approval is proof, through actual tests of the drug and device, that these are safe and effective rather than possible causes of unexpected harm or injury to patients.
Every year, millions of new pharmaceutical products are presented to the FDA for approval, keeping the hands of this federal branch of the US government always full. This may probably be the reason why some medical products, despite their manufacturers’ claim that these are safe and effective, end up causing adverse effects instead, some even resulting to severe illnesses, while others are linked to patient death.
It is often challenging to pinpoint who the real liable party is whenever a medical product ends up causing injury rather than providing remedy. It can be the pharmaceutical company, which funded and conducted the tests on their own products, but failed to accurately report the products’ possible negative effects, or the doctor who failed to either accurately diagnose the patient’s condition or find out what other health issues the patient has and the medications that he/she is taking which may interact negatively with the drug or product that he/she intends to prescribe; these, however, are just two of the numerous factors that make medical products, which are expected to remedy illnesses, become dangerous medications instead.
A list of some pharmaceutical products that have been (and which are being) linked to serious side-effects is found in the website of Williams Kherkher. Included in this list are the prescription drugs Zofran and Depakote, and Transvaginal mesh, which is a surgical patch.
Zofran, generically named Ondansetron, is an antiemetic agent manufactured by the London-based GlaxoSmithKline. It belongs to the 5-HT3 receptor antagonist drug group, which is known to effectively block serotonin, a natural substance inside the body that can cause vomiting.
Zofran was approved by the FDA to treat vomiting and nausea caused by surgery, radiation therapy and cancer chemotherapy. It definitely must have been effective, otherwise, its manufacturer would not have recommended it for non-label use (for uses not approved by the FDA). This move served as a cue to doctors, who started prescribing the drug to pregnant women to alleviate in them any feeling of discomfort due to severe morning sickness.
The drug, however, was never tested on pregnant women, thus, the absence of notes or proofs of its safety for their use. And, soon enough, the results started to show: babies born to mothers, who took Zofran during their pregnancy, suffered birth defects, such as cleft palate, cleft lip, mouth deformities, musculoskeletal anomalies and heart ailment.
Depakote is another drug that is said to cause severe birth defects if taken by women during their pregnancy. This anticonvulsant drug earned the approval of the FDA three times for three different purposes: for the prevention of severe epileptic seizures (approved in 1983); to treat manic episodes due to bipolar disorder (in 1995); and, prevent migraine attacks (in 1996). It was not approved, however, to be used by pregnant women.
According to the website of Williams Kherkher, Depakote has been linked to the following birth defects, the most serious health conditions caused by this drug:
- Spina bifida ( a condition wherein the spinal column does not close totally) and other spinal defects
- Facial dysmorphism or malformation of face or skull
- Malformation of cardiovascular system
- Brain defect, which is often fatal.
Besides these, there are other reported side-effects that Depakote has been connected to, such as liver toxicity, pancreatitis, unusual bruising or bleeding, joint weakness, confusion, difficulty swallowing and/or breathing, and so forth.
The most serious health conditions caused by Depakote, though, can be those found in babies, whose mothers were prescribed with the drug during their pregnancy. Women, who took the drug, were in a great chance of delivering dead babies or babies with birth defects, like facial dysmorphism (deformity in a child’s facial structure), spina bifida (a condition wherein the spinal column of an unborn child does not close totally), deformity of the cardiovascular system, and brain defect, which can be fatal.
Prescription drugs are not the only modern threats to patient safety, however; the website of Williams Kherkher also mentions Transvaginal mesh, a surgical patch, as another cause of severe harm.
Through the surgical procedure called Transvaginal/ Vaginal mesh implant, a patch is attached to a vaginal wall to strengthen it due to its insufficient thickness. This is meant to prevent the occurrence of stress urinary incontinence (SUI) and pelvic organ prolapse (POP) which cause women great pain and discomfort.
In 2011 the US FDA’s Center for Devices and Radiological Health stated that transvaginal placement of mesh is dangerous for, besides causing complications, such as mesh erosion, mesh exposure, mesh contraction and mesh migration, it may no longer be possible to remove it once put in place, which means that it may be impossible for the patient, in whom it was implanted, to recover from its side-effects.
Anyone injured by any kind of product, most especially pharmaceutical products, have the right to file a lawsuit against all possible liable parties for the compensation that they are legally allowed to seek and receive. Seeking the help of a seasoned lawyer, however, should be the first step in order to be successful in this legal pursuit.
Posted by Victor on May 21, 2015 in Family Law | 0 comments
Child custody and child support are two issues that spouses may have to face and resolve during a divorce proceeding. Though both issues concern the welfare of their child, one is totally different from the other. And whatever decision the court may arrive at regarding these issues, two very things must be complied with by both spouses: first, that the custodial parent must never deny the non-custodial parent his/her visitation time; and, second, that the non-custodial parent must neither escape nor stop his/her (financial) support for the children even if he/she is being denied his/her visitation time.
Child support is the monthly financial assistance that the non-custodial parent (known legally as the obligor) pays to the custodial parent (known legally as the obligee). Despite the former’s regular payment, the latter must never have the erroneous thought that financial support for the child is the mere obligation of his/her non-custodial former spouse since he/she, as custodian, is already providing his/her time, attention and care for the child. Another important thing that the custodial parent needs to know is that whatever support payment is given, the whole of it should only be used for the child’s needs, such as food, clothing, shelter, education and medical care.
In determining how much monthly support the non-custodial parent should be pay, the following factors are considered: the child’s age and needs, and the cost of these needs; the parent’s age and income (income may include salary, overtime pay, dividends, commissions, etc.), and so forth.
Payment of child support cannot be waived by the non-custodial parent; this is true even if the custodial parent (together with the children), or the non-custodial parent, moves to another state (there are also legal concerns that need to be observed in case of plans to move to another state as this will definitely affect the non-custodial parent’s visitation rights). This is why many states now work together, especially for purposes that include collection of child support payment and locating a parent who may have moved to another state in the hope of escaping his/her payment obligations.
According to the website of Arenson Law Group, PC, anyone who refuses to pay his/her child support obligations can face any or a combination of the following sanctions: garnishment of his/her wages; seizure of his/her bank account/s; seizure of his/her income tax refund; fines; suspension of his/her car registration or driver’s license; and, the possibility of time in jail. Therefore, non-payment is never an option.
Posted by Victor on May 19, 2015 in Storage Units | 0 comments
One industry in the US that has continuously grown since it began in the 1960s is the self-storage industry. The nature of the self-storage, also known as mini-storage, business is provide individuals, families and business firms the extra space they need practically for anything they need to store safely. There are more than 50,000 self-storage facilities in the US, most of these located in the Sun Belt states, like, Florida, California and Texas, where houses, especially the newly-built ones, are designed without either an attic or a basement, the usual spaces where people can keep old things that they still hold valuable or just cannot throw away.
Since 2004, the average size of houses in America has become bigger, according to the National Association of Homebuilders. Obviously, though, the increase in space, from 1,660 square feet to 2,400 square feet, is still not enough to house everything that people buy.
Consumerism in America is on an upsurge, meaning that people are increasingly buying a lot of new stuff. Its obvious result is one in every ten families having the need to rent a space, particularly a self-storage, where old things, furniture and appliances go to give room for newly bought ones.
While the idea of renting a self-storage may be a very remote idea to others, those who are currently leasing one know that having a self-storage space can really be beneficial, especially if you:
- Want to enjoy the freedom of being able to rotate your furnishings regularly
- Intend to move to a new residence
- Want or need to reduce some of your furnishings for more excellent showing
- Lack space for old things, like old toys or mom’s and pop’s favorites, but just cannot throw these out
Rather than worry, self-storage facilities give assurance of your belongings being safe and accessible to you 24/7. Some Austin self storage facilities also guarantee drive up access, personal access codes, security cameras, a fully-fenced property, climate controlled and drive-up units, and a resident manager, who is always ready to answer questions and provide assistance. Furthermore, this storage facility has small units for those intending to store only boxed and other “not-so-big” items, as well as big units where one can keep furnishings from an entire home.
Most self-storage facilities lease spaces on a month-to-month basis which, of course, is renewable. Besides being affordable, payment can also be cash, with a personal check or through a credit card.
Posted by Victor on May 15, 2015 in Birth Injury | 0 comments
There are more than 760,000 children and adults in the US suffering from cerebral palsy (CP) and, every year, an estimated 12,000 more new patients are added to their number. Cerebral palsy is an incurable, chronic disorder that impairs communication between the brain and the muscles. It is caused by damage to, or malformation of, the motor areas in the brain which are responsible for controlling a person’s movement and posture.
CP is one of the most common neurodevelopmental disorders in children and it will affect a child for the rest of his/her life. A person, especially a child who is suffering from CP, will experience difficulty with fine motor tasks (like writing), walking and balance; often, emotional, social, sensory and cognitive disabilities are also associated with the disorder.
Some children are born with CP, while others acquire it during the first years of their lives. Congenital CP, which is present at birth, is usually the result of lack of proper and adequate care for the pregnant woman, lack of oxygen in the brain of the unborn, a severe case of jaundice, trauma to the head of the child during labor or delivery, Rh incompatibility, infections suffered by the mother during pregnancy, infant stroke, premature birth and very low birth weight.
Cerebral palsy, which develops during the child’s early years, is called Acquired CP. This may be caused by brain infection, including viral encephalitis and meningitis, or injury to the head of the child, which can be due to a fall, vehicular accident or child abuse.
While the specific type of cerebral palsy, the degree of functional limitation and the specific limbs which get affected are the determining factors of the severity of the disorder, the two major causes of its presence are very low birth weight and premature birth (these two conditions do not automatically cause
CP, but rather increases the risk of it). Aside from the possible causes listed above, medical authorities name another factor which they acknowledge has caused majority of CP cases in the US: medical negligence.
So many medical negligent acts are committed either during pregnancy or during delivery. Some specific examples of these acts include failure to recognize and/or treat fetal distress, failure to plan or perform an emergency C-section, incorrect medication during delivery, wrong or excessive use of vacuum extraction devices, and so forth.
The Driscoll Firm P.C. discusses on its website the restricting effects of cerebral palsy both in children and in adults. Though patients suffering from this disorder may avail of therapeutic treatments, the activities they will be able to engage in remain limited when compared to a normal person; besides, the cost of treatment will surely be not inexpensive. This can ruin a person’s life right at its beginning.
If the disorder acquired by a child as a result of a medical professional’s negligence, then such child’s family has the right to take legal action for possible compensation the law may allow the child to receive. This compensation should, first and foremost, cover cost of medical treatment that the child will need for as long as he/she needs it. A seasoned cerebral palsy or birth injury lawyer will definitely be able to help the child and his/her family get the maximum amount of compensation from the liable person and, possibly, from the institution which that person represents.