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Rear-end motor vehicle accident becomes more than a fender bender

Published on Mar 27, 2018 at 1:23 pm in General Blogs.

Rear-end collisions bring up images of cars bumping into each other at stop lights or when traffic comes to an unexpected standstill during rush hour. Many of these fender benders cause more in property damage than they do in injuries, but that is not always the case. A rear-end motor vehicle accident can become much more than just a fender bender, depending on the circumstances.

For instance, two vehicles headed in the same direction on Maryland 273 recently collided. Before all was said and done, three vehicles were involved and one person was dead with two others injured. Preliminary reports from troopers with the Maryland State Police indicate that two vehicles were traveling westbound when the lead car slowed down to make a left turn. The vehicle behind it failed to stop and crashed into the back of the lead vehicle. The impact violently shoved the first car into the eastbound lane where it was hit by another vehicle.

Legal malpractice: Did your attorney do something improper?

Published on Mar 23, 2018 at 1:24 pm in Legal Malpractice.

If you are like most people here in Maryland and elsewhere, you probably contact an attorney because you have a problem that requires his or her experience. You trust that your best interests remain a priority and your case will be resolved in the best manner possible. Unfortunately, like those in other professions, mistakes can happen. The question is whether that mistake constituted legal malpractice and caused you economic harm.

The threshold for proving that malpractice occurred is high. You will need to show that your attorney was incompetent or otherwise acted negligently or fraudulently. However, that is not enough. You must also show that you suffered financial harm as a direct result.

Disastrous bridge collapse illustrates construction hazards

Published on Mar 20, 2018 at 1:25 pm in General Blogs.

The collapse of the newly constructed pedestrian bridge at Florida International University is a horrifying example of the unexpected failure of a massive structure.

Within 24 hours of the incident, the number of fatalities was still unclear. The bridge collapse not only posed danger to people in the immediate vicinity, but also to rescue workers and emergency responders who arrived on the scene.

Meeting OSHA standards

In accordance with the Occupational Safety and Health Act, employers must meet hazard-specific health and safety standards and provide employees with a work environment that is not likely to cause serious injury or death. This is not always easy in the construction world. The pedestrian bridge at FIU was meant to provide students with a safe walking route over the busy highway below. Instead, the bridge crashed onto the eight lanes of traffic, leveling several vehicles. Reportedly, two workers were on the bridge when it fell.

Truck accident blamed on drowsy driving

Published on Mar 14, 2018 at 1:26 pm in Truck Accidents.

Working long hours, family obligations and other circumstances can make it difficult to get adequate sleep. Most Maryland residents can recall at least one time when they felt tired all day long due to sleep deprivation, but still had to get on with their lives, which may have included driving. An extra cup of coffee, soda or energy drink may have provided enough alertness to get through the day, but they probably were not on the road all day. What about the trucker who struggles to stay awake while driving all day? No amount of caffeine can erase the increased potential for a truck accident.

Did your vehicle “trip” on something prior to the rollover?

Published on Mar 8, 2018 at 1:27 pm in General Blogs.

A rollover is possibly the most frightening type of crash you could ever have. The vehicle suddenly flips, and you are powerless to stop it. You can only hope to ride it out as you are bounced around and upside down.

There are various reasons for rollover accident. One of the most common causes is that the vehicle may have “tripped” on something.

In car will roll, but some are more prone

Any kind of vehicle can roll over in the perfect storm of circumstances. However, vehicles that are narrower and taller – such SUVs, vans and pickups – are the most prone to rollovers. In a curve, a vehicle with a higher center of gravity will lean. As speed increases, the lateral forces will cause it to tip. Making too sharp a turn can trigger a rollover. Another common scenario is overcorrecting after a suddenly swerve, creating a pendulum or wobble effect that the vehicle cannot sustain.

Did medical malpractice cause Bill Paxton’s death?

Published on Mar 7, 2018 at 1:28 pm in Medical Malpractice.

Maryland moviegoers may remember that Bill Paxton starred in big box office blockbusters such as “Twister,” “Titanic” and “Aliens” throughout his career. He also graced the small screen in television shows such as “Big Love,” which aired on HBO. He died on Feb. 25, 2017, just days after undergoing a surgical procedure on his heart at the age of 61. Now, his family has filed a lawsuit claiming that medical malpractice took his life.

The family alleges that the surgeon failed to disclose all of the potential risks involved in the operation to them or Paxton. Moreover, they claim that the surgeon was not qualified to perform the unconventional and highly risky procedure. Even though his official cause of death is listed as a stroke after heart surgery, the family believes that his death could have been prevented.

Allegedly, the surgeon’s lack of experience reportedly led to post-surgical complications that led to the stroke. The lawsuit not only involves the surgeon, but also the hospital where the operation took place, Cedars-Sinai. The family says that the trust they and Paxton placed in the hospital staff and the surgeon was betrayed. However, it may be up to the courts to determine whether Paxton’s medical care fell below the accepted standards of care.

Paxton’s family could have a long road ahead of them since medical malpractice lawsuits are notoriously challenging. The level of medical expertise required in many cases alone can make these cases problematic. This is due, at least in part, to the need to differentiate between unfortunate circumstances and medical error. Anyone in Maryland believing that a medical mistake took the life of a loved one may find it comforting to know that they do not have to go through this process alone.

Source: CNN, “Bill Paxton’s family files wrongful death suit“, Sandra Gonzalez, Accessed on March 4, 2018

How does crashworthiness play into traumatic brain injury?

Published on Mar 2, 2018 at 1:29 pm in General Blogs.

The term “crashworthiness” is frequently used when manufacturers test vehicles for safety.

There are many reasons that a car crash might occur (including automobile defects). But even when the collision results from human error, a vehicle defect can directly cause serious harm (such as a brain injury) or make injuries worse than they should be. Crashworthy refers not to the vehicle’s sturdiness but to the vehicle’s ability to protect the occupants.

TBI (traumatic brain injury) is not always visible

More than half of all vehicle crashes include a report of traumatic brain injury TBI. (Concussions are a common form of brain injury.) At impact your head may strike something hard like your steering wheel or windshield, causing brain hemorrhaging or bruising. But there is not always a visible wound or direct impact. Brain injury can occur from the whiplash force of the crash, as the brain “collides” with the inside of the skull.

OSHA violations are often too late to prevent workplace accidents

Published on Feb 28, 2018 at 1:13 pm in General Blogs.

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration conducts inspections of facilities in a variety of industries throughout the year. Unfortunately, some of them are prompted by workplace accidents in which an innocent life was lost. Each year, too large a number of workers across the country, perhaps including some here in Maryland, die before a company is forced to take the safety of its workers seriously.

For instance, OSHA recently completed an investigation into the death of a worker in a plastics company last year. OSHA found that the company willfully violated a regulation requiring machine guards on its equipment to prevent injuries to workers. Investigators also found that the company failed to implement proper shut down and lock out/tag out procedures.

What is causing the increase in large truck injury crashes?

Published on Feb 27, 2018 at 1:14 pm in General Blogs.

As a motorist on the highways and byways in and around Baltimore, you are accustomed to seeing big rigs. What you do not want to see, let alone be involved in, is a truck-related crash.

Unfortunately, there has been a sharp increase in large truck accidents in recent years. What is causing these crashes, and where are they happening?

The FMCSA weighs in

According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, fatalities involving trucks peaked at 6,702 deaths in 1979. During the ’80s and ’90, the number hovered around 5,500 annual truck-related deaths on the nation’s roads. In the new millennium, the number edged down steadily, reaching a historic low of 3,380 truck fatalities in 2009 – half the number of three decades earlier.

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