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Bad Driving Performance and Employer Negligence: Major Causes of Truck Accidents

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According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), fatal truck accidents happen almost 11 times a day; this translates to more than 100,000 injuries and more than 4,000 deaths every year. These numbers is despite the fact that both the U.S. Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and FMCSA have created laws that are directed towards achieving significantly reduced road accidents involving trucks.

Unfortunately, though federal government agencies and traffic enforcers remain determined in their pursuit of ensuring safety on the road, the number of truck accidents still remains so high due to many truck drivers’ bad driving performance and trucking company negligence.

With regard to bad driving behavior, it has been discovered that many truck accidents are caused by drivers with multiple violations and who have very recently received warnings from their safety officers; despite these violations and warnings, they have been allowed to continue operating their vehicles.

In 1986, the Commercial Motor Vehicle Safety Act, which strictly mandates the removal of bad drivers from the road, was passed into law. Allowing drivers to continue operating a truck despite multiple traffic violations, especially a DUI or driving under the influence (either of alcohol or drugs), is a clear violation of this law to which drivers, safety officers and employers must answer.

On the issue of company or employer negligence, the Department of Transportation has revealed that many small truck companies, to be able to continue with their operations, simply re-register under a new name and change their corporate structure in order to evade liability for accidents wherein their drivers are at fault, and escape legal responsibility for company violations of federal laws.

Unlike cars and SUVs, a semi-trailer, also called a big rig or an 18-wheeler, can easily damage smaller vehicles, crushing these like tin cans and severely injuring or killing all their passengers. Accidents, injuries and deaths are not just statistical data. In each accident, many lives are affected: the lives of victims and of the members of their respective families. It will be in the best interest of victims to pursue legal action for them to possibly receive justice and the compensation which the court may find them worthy to claim.

According to a Boston personal injury lawyer, the sheer size of large commercial trucks and the force they have when driving at even low speeds requires trucking companies and drivers to exercise considerable care in the operation and maintenance of these vehicles in order to prevent unnecessary risks to public safety. Unfortunately, it is all too common for trucking companies and truck drivers to ignore this responsibility, potentially placing others at risk of suffering serious physical trauma, including spine and brain injuries, or even death.

These, as explained by Houston trucking accident attorneys, result to truck accidents which could have easily been prevented from occurring. Truck accidents are very different from ordinary wrecks, and oftentimes injured individuals may be eligible from compensation from multiple parties. Not only may the driver of the truck be held accountable, the company that hired the driver and other parties may also be partially at fault for the injuries and financial burdens that you are now forced to deal with.

For many individuals, it quickly becomes clear that the entities they are fighting following a wreck have nearly unlimited resources and are not interested in their recovery or well-being. Instead, the major corporation and insurance company that you are facing is likely to pressure you into settling your case for far less than it is worth. This is the kind of “game” that these firms play with injured individuals.

 

Hidden Risks in the Workplace

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Hidden Risks in the Workplace

Whether you work on a construction site or an office, you are still prone to accidents and injuries. Maybe you get hurt because of your own inattentiveness and recklessness, or maybe because of your employer’s negligence. But it doesn’t change the fact that you are injured, and you may lose time at work because of it.

A lot of employees need help with their workers’ compensation application, and even with the legal help, there are times where they don’t really get compensation, especially if the accident and injury is their fault. To avoid the pain of injuries and the legal hassles they bring, it is just better to avoid accidents altogether.

Defective office equipment and facilities

Malfunctioning coffeemakers, overheating desktops and laptops, and defective elevators and escalators, are just some of the equipment and facilities in the work area that can cause accidents. If you see these defects, report them to your immediate supervisor so they can do something about them.

Poorly maintained work areas

Disorganized and cluttered work spaces are also very risky. Opened cabinets, pieces of paper on the floor, loose cables from laptops, worn carpets, and unattended spilled drinks are the most common causes of slipping, tripping, and falling in the office.

Inherent hazards

Even properly maintained work spaces can be prone to hazards, such as air and fire problems. Failure to properly circulate air, ventilate the area, or letting dangerous air inside the office can cause eye and lung problems. Fire hazards like overheating equipment, overusing of electrical systems, and having combustible materials can result into fires, explosions, burn injuries, and lung issues.

Poor Ergonomics

Comfort is an underrated aspect of the workplace, but overlooking it can have devastating consequences to the body. If your work station is not properly adjusted, you may have neck, shoulder, back, and wrist problems. Without adequate lighting, you may sustain eye problems. Without the proper neutralizer of unnecessary sound, you may get distracted and this may contribute to your stress levels and mental effectiveness.

Taking the Right Legal Steps After a Head-on Collision

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Head-on collisions, says the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), are among the most dangerous types of car accidents. Its results are usually life-altering injuries or wrongful death.

Car accidents, especially, head-on collisions, are primarily due to driver error (driver error is also the cause to more than 90% of the five million motor vehicle accidents in the U.S. every year). Causes of head-on collisions include: inattentive or distracted driving; a driver drifting into oncoming traffic; a driver who, knowingly or unknowingly, drives the wrong way on a highway or residential road; making a dangerous passing maneuver; driving while intoxicated; driving at excessive speed; or, falling asleep at the wheel. These are nothing less than negligence or reckless road behavior, a fault that can easily be prevented and corrected.

Only about 2% of the more than five million motor vehicle crashes is accounted to head-on collisions; however, of the 30,000 plus fatal accidents, more than 10% is due to vehicles colliding head on. And while there may be drivers able to survive this very dangerous crash, the most likely results are severe injuries, like spinal cord injuries, brain injuries, broken bones, and paralysis, among others.

Knowledge of the possible severe consequences of head-on collisions is the main reason why many drivers pray never to get involved in this type of car crash. To help prevent this, many states, on their part, have installed stretches of steel wire cable in large highways to keep head-on collisions from ever occurring at freeway speeds.

A driver who causes a head-on collision accident due negligence or recklessness can be held liable for the consequences of his/her carelessness. The only major difficulty in this type of accident is determining who is really at fault since the force of impact can send both vehicles in flying in positions different than during the time of impact. A reconstruction of the accident by a specialist is usually necessitated in order to determine who was at fault, based on the skid marks on the road.

New Jersey car accident attorneys of the Todd J. Leonard Law Firm share very important information regarding car accidents, saying, “In the immediate aftermath of a car accident that causes injury, most people’s first instinct is to contact their insurance companies to make a claim.” Your legal right to seek financial compensation after a car accident, like in New Jersey, for instance, depends on the type of insurance coverage you have, and may also depend on the other driver’s coverage. Your car insurance includes either a limitation on the right to sue or no limitation on the right to sue. In many cases, especially serious auto accident cases, it is important to consult an experienced personal injury lawyer before talking with your insurance company and the defendants to make sure all of your rights are protected.”

Lack of Safety Gates, the Cause of 60% of All Railroad Crossing Accidents

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On May 12, 2015, an Amtrak Northeast Regional train headed to New York City derailed in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The accident injured more than 200 passengers and killed eight others. The train was traveling around a curve at 102 mph in a 50 mph zone when it jumped the track.

Passenger trains (different from commuter rail trains which are part of an intercity transportation system) which, once upon a time, played a large and vital part in the nation’s passenger transportation network, now plays a limited role in the U.S. rail transportation that is currently dominated by freight shipments for moving imports, exports, coal and oil from one county or state to another.

Though railways are less frequently used today for passenger travel than they were many, many years ago, train accidents still occur. On the more than 600 railroads and over 140,000 crossings in the U.S., at least 2,500 train accidents occur every year, based on records from the U.S. Department of Transportation and the Federal Railroad Administration.

While types of train accidents include derailments (the most common type), crashes with motor vehicles or with other trains, and pedestrian injuries at unprotected crossings, the most common causes of these accidents are conductor error, mechanical failure, railway negligence, a negligent motor vehicle operator, a distracted pedestrian, a stalled vehicle sitting on the tracks, and inspection or maintenance violations.

According to the National Transportation Safety Board, 60% of all railroad crossing accidents occur at unprotected or under-protected crossing sites – this means improperly marked crossings or crossings lacking in safety gates and light signals. Markings or signs will only tell motorists that they are approaching a railroad crossing, not whether there is a train coming. Warnings of an approaching train are made by flashing light signals and the lowering of safety gates.

Because any type of train accident can result in serious injuries or death, the Hankey Law Office, therefore, reminds everyone of how dangerous railroad crossings can be since these are locations at which trains, other vehicles, and people regularly come into close contact with each other.

Its speed will make it difficult for a train to come to a full stop just in time before it hits any unexpected obstruction in its path (such as a car). However, any type of vehicle will most likely never be an obstruction to any approaching train if there are flashing light signals and safety gates present and properly working. Unfortunately, despite the very high chance of safety provided by safety gates, there are individuals and authorities, whose duty includes putting these gates in place, who often neglect to do so in certain locations. It is this negligent act which is often the reason behind fatal railroad accidents – accidents which all negligent parties should be held accountable for.

Understanding The Child Support Process

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One of the pressing issues that need to be resolved in a divorce case is child support. Which parent gets the child is something for the judge to decide? According to the website of Marshall & Taylor PLLC, divorce can bring a lot of adjustments to both the parents and the children. The cost of supporting a child can pile up on the part of the custodial parent so child support agreements with the noncustodial parent must be in place.

Although child support should be fairly straightforward, it entails more than just paperwork. The first step is to get in touch with your local Office of Child Support Enforcement (OCSE). The agency will be the one to implement the child support order. If you were never married to the father of your child or to someone else at the time of conception, the OCSE will first establish paternity. This could mean tracking down the other parent in order to perform genetic testing. On the other hand, if you were married to someone else during conception, the state may assume that your spouse is the biological father.

Once paternity has been established, the child support order will then be established based on the state child support guidelines. The income of both parents and the number of children will be considered as well as other factors. If either parent can get medical insurance for child at an affordable cost, the court will take it into consideration when deciding the amount of child support to be awarded. If the noncustodial parent is able to get health insurance at a reasonable cost, the parent will ordered to secure one for the child.

One the child support order is in place, the amount awarded will be deducted from the paycheck of the noncustodial parent. In most instances, state law will require immediate income withholding. It will also provide the noncustodial parent with a record of payments made.

The support order will be enforced if the noncustodial parent does not pay the full amount or does not pay at all. Non-compliance with the order makes the noncustodial parent liable for contempt of court, the penalty of which could be a fine, jail sentence or both. The noncustodial parent may also be ordered to enroll in the Fatherhood Program or in the Parental Accountability Court Program.

Both parents can ask for a review of a child support order three years after it took effect unless a substantial change in circumstances can be proven for orders less than three years old.

False Arrest: A Civil Harm and a Crime that Allows Victims to File for Damages

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There are times when people wrongfully bring criminal charges against certain individuals or when a person is falsely accused of a crime and, thus, detained by a worker or a security guard, or still, when someone holds another person ( against that person’s will) inside his or her home. All scenarios speak of what is called “false arrest.”

False Arrest, also called wrongful arrest or false imprisonment, happens when someone wrongfully holds another individual against his or her will or takes him or her into custody. When private citizens or law enforces act outside or beyond their scope of their authority, then this damaging mistake is most likely to happen.

Though without serious intentions, as in the case of kidnapping, false arrest is still considered a “lesser included offense” of kidnapping. This is because, like kidnapping, false arrest involves an unlawful detention of another individual.

False or wrongful arrest includes:

  • Arresting the wrong person
  • Arresting a person despite the absence of probable cause
  • Arresting someone without reading the suspect’s Miranda Rights
  • Arresting a person without just cause
  • Arresting someone based on false information
  • Arresting someone for personal gain
  • Arresting someone based on pure malice

It is advised, however, that people who are wrongfully arrested never resist arrest or this may only cause them major legal problems. When their specific case reaches the court, then the mistake committed against them can be exposed; this mistake will be their basis in filing claims for damages, which may include:

  • Lost wages during period of incarceration
  • Embarrassment and damage to reputation
  • Physical harm that he or she may have been sustained during the wrongful arrest
  • False imprisonment
  • Punitive damages
  • Illness that he or she may have incurred as a result of the wrongful arrest

Individuals may file for a claim only if they are not found guilty (in court) of any of the charges brought against them. This means that, if found guilty, but due to wrongful arrest, the court can have the lawsuit filed against them dismissed; however, they will not be entitled to file for damages.

Even if the arrests were made by law enforcers or state officials, those wrongfully arrested can file complaints based on the violation of their civil rights. These civil rights complaints or lawsuits are known as “Section 1983” suits (named after the United States Code Section 1983, which is a federal law).

False arrest is a civil harm and a crime; thus, wrongfully arrested individuals have the legal right to sue for damages in a civil lawsuit (which may be filed against the individuals who made the false arrest, their superiors, or the business establishment or county government that employed them). As explained in the website of wrongful arrest & false imprisonment lawyers of Clawson and Staubes, LLC, “a person who has been wrongfully arrested or falsely imprisoned may have a civil cause of action against the person or entity that brought the charges or made the false accusations. Being wrongfully accused of a crime or falsely accused of criminal activity can result in damages such as attorney’s fees and missed time from work, as well as humiliation and embarrassment.”

The Consequences of a Car Accident

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In the event that you’ve ever been in a car, you are aware that feeling – an easy trip and then, abruptly, comes the unsuspected jerk from your seat. It’s a minute of panic, that solitary bounce with the sound of a person colliding with the vehicle and you also almost swear you felt your heart skip a beat. It’s because danger is impending and the potential of harm is present. In this day and era statistics show that you, at least once in your lifetime, will experience a car-related accident.

Perhaps the mishap could be something small, like an accidental scrape of a door that can result into a paint-job or maybe a number of minimal repairs. Ultimately, there is no actual damage done but to, maybe, your pride and vanity. That’s good. But some motor vehicle-related injuries can be life-altering in the manner that is worst. It could be a car or a motorbike if not an eighteen-wheeler truck – any accident involving an automobile that creates personal injury is bound to be traumatic and expensive in ways that much surpass the word’s significance.

There’s evidence a car crash can affect all facets of not only the victim’s life – but also the lifestyles of the victim’s family and friends at the same time. A car accident can indicate serious harms such as that of spinal-cord accidents, brain injuries, bone cracks, etc. Not only this, but the experience also can trigger psychological trauma that results in post-traumatic stress disorder. The expenses for such conditions can be expensive – both psychologically and financially. The income of an entire family is influenced, severely threatening their financial security and stability, when the casualty hurt in the mishap was the primary source of revenue then. These, however, could be maintained as compensation in the guilty party through lawful means.

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Risk Factors for Uterine Cancer

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Uterine cancer is the fourth most prevalent type of cancer in women. It affects the lining of the uterus, the hollow reproductive organ in the pelvis. Diagnosis usually is done through biopsy, ultrasound, or a pelvic examination, and if you click here, you can find more information on how to determine the stages of cancer. Women who experience symptoms such as pelvic pains, pain during sex or urination, or abnormal vaginal discharge or bleeding should immediately get checked for uterine cancer. There is yet no known specific cause of uterine cancer, but there are factors that can increase the risk in women. Some of these risks include:

  • Obesity
  • Menopause after 55 years old
  • Women who never experienced childbirth
  • Women who suffer from hyperplasia (or endometrial overgrowth)
  • Radiation on the pelvis
  • Experiencing menstruation before the age of 12
  • Women taking estrogen or tamoxifen (a treatment for breast cancer)
  • Lynch syndrome, or any family history of uterine cancer

There are a number of ways that uterine cancer can be treated, such as radiation therapy, chemotherapy, hormone therapy, and surgery. The type of treatment generally depends on the stage that the cancer is in. it is important for patients to get a second and even third opinion regarding the uterine cancer diagnosis, and referrals can be provided by the attending doctor. Likewise, the follow-up care is just as important, since recurrence can occur and so that complications can be treated early.

It is important to treat uterine cancer to prevent it from worsening. One of the complications that can occur during the surgical removal or a tumor in the uterus or areas around it is the possible spread of the cancer cells. Surgical tools such as the power morcellator have been recalled by the FDA following increasing reports of the device increasing the spreading of undetected cancer cells to other parts of the body. The largest manufacturer, Johnson & Johnson, was believed to have known of the risks that the surgical tool can cause since 2006, but only did a voluntary pull-out of the device in 2014. There is currently an ongoing FBI investigation on the extent of the manufacturing company’s knowledge of the risk and how long they were aware of them.

The Various Effects of Cerebral Palsy

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Cerebral palsy (CP) broadly describes a group of brain disorders that are caused by injury to the brain or abnormal brain development occurring during fetal growth, labor and delivery, or during the first years of the child’s life. Some cases of CP have unknown causes, others, however, have been traced to premature birth, very low birth weight, blood clotting abnormalities in the placenta during pregnancy, pelvic inflammatory infections, fetal stroke, inflammation of the umbilical cord, vaginal bleeding, lack of oxygen supply to the brain, trauma to the head at the time of labor and delivery, brain damage due to congenital causes, head injury (due to vehicular accident, fall or child abuse), lack of proper care for the pregnant woman, severe cases of jaundice, use of illegal drugs by the pregnant woman, and so forth. What is saddening, however, is the fact that behind all these causes is the high possibility of negligence or carelessness on the part of the doctor, medical staff of the hospital itself.

Cerebral palsy affects areas of the brain responsible in controlling muscle tone, motor skills, balance and coordination, and mental abilities, resulting to abnormal muscle tone and reflexes, problems with balance and movement, inadequate muscle growth, bone deformities, misaligned joints, excessive fatigue with movement and walking, difficulties in breathing, speech and language, feeding and swallowing disorders, cognitive impairment or learning disabilities, and many others.

The severity of the effects of CP depends on the location and extent of the damage to the child’s brain. Thus, while others may only experience difficulty in movement, others are totally unable to control both legs, both arms, or all four limbs. Likewise, while some children may still possess normal intelligence, others suffer from learning impairment.

Cerebral palsy has been classified into four categories, each with specific effects on the child. These categories are Spastic, Athetoid (or dyskinetic), Ataxic, and Mixed.

  1. Spastic – this is the most common form of cerebral palsy and it affects about 70 to 80 percent of all CP patients. Spastic cerebral palsy disrupts normal growth, causes abnormal movements, limits one’s ability to stretch his or her muscles during movement, and causes malformations in muscle and joint development. Spastic CP has five different forms:
    • Spastic diplegia – this usually affects both legs more than the arms.
    • Spastic quadriplegia –all four limbs are affected by this type of CP, and it also happens to be the most severe and incapacitating form of spastic cerebral palsy.
    • Spastic hemiplegia –the limbs on one side of the body are the ones affected.
    • Spastic monoplegia – this very rare case of Spastic CP affects only one limb (any one arm or leg).
    • Spastic triplegia – instead of just one limb, three are, rather, affected. This is another very rare case of Spastic CP.
  2. Athetoid cerebral palsy or dyskinetic cerebral palsy – this form of cerebral palsy involves slow, uncontrolled, writhing hand, arm or leg movements, as well as involuntary facial grimaces and drooling. Athetoid cerebral palsy causes difficulty in sitting up straight, walking, speaking, grasping objects, and performing basic actions, including combing, eating and swallowing. Mental ability is usually not affected, though, so that children with Athetoid CP may even have above average intelligence.
  3. Ataxic cerebral palsy – this causes in patients tremors or shaky movements, and difficulty in maintaining balance. Ataxic movements are characterized by clumsiness, instability, jerkiness and imprecision.
  4. Mixed cerebral palsy – this refers to the combination of any two forms of cerebral palsy; the most common, however, is the combination of spastic and athetoid.

For a Chicago cerebral palsy lawyer, the compensation that the law allows CP victims to receive from the liable party (assuming that CP is a result of someone’s carelessness or act of negligence) is very important as this can help assure the provision of medical treatment needed by the CP victim. To be able to receive the maximum amount of compensation, however, it will require the best arguments and defense from a highly knowledgeable and skilled cerebral palsy lawyer.

Roller Coaster Defects: Who is at Fault?

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The cart you are strapped to slows down the closer you get to the peak of the tracks. Your stomach is filled with anxious butterflies, but you are kept sane by the idea that one, this is supposed to be fun, and two, you are safe. Although most of the time these are both true, sometimes you are not safe where you are guaranteed you will be.

According to the Nationwide Children’s Hospital in Ohio, there were more than 92,000 children injured in roller coaster and amusement park related incidents between 1990 and 2010. Who is to blame for this? Well, that is where things get complicated. There are a couple of different types of defects that cause roller coaster accidents.

Design defects occur when there is fault in the design of the product itself. This type of defect is the fault of the designer. These kinds of defects are usually widespread, due to the fact that everything made with a faulty design runs a high risk of backfiring.

Manufacturing defects happen when the parts of the product or the way the product is manufactured are the reason the product is faulty. This usually occurs when the product is not tested properly before going on the market.

In the case of roller coasters, it may not be easy to figure out who exactly was at fault, due to the fact that many designs are manufactured on a small scale.

According to the website of Pohl Berk, more than 21,000 deaths occur in the United States every year due to product defects. Although you should not go through life paranoid that everything is out to get you, do not trust a product just because it is presented to you. People die every year believing that if a roller coaster is allowed to run, it will not cause them any harm.

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