Escalator Injuries and Deaths: A Premise Liability Case

Feb 20, 2017 by

Accidents occurring on escalators have been far more frequent compared to elevator-related accidents for the past twenty five years. Each year, close to ten percent escalator-related accidents are added to the 4,900 yearly incidences reported in the 1990s. In 2000, the number of accidents resulting to injuries and deaths jumped to more than 10,100 and, by the end of 2013, the number climbed to 12,260. Children, aged 14 and under, and senior citizens, at least 65 years old, are the ones who most commonly get involved in escalator accidents.

Falls is first in the list of escalator-related injuries and deaths, according to the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), the branch of the U.S. Federal government that protects American consumers and families from products that pose fire, chemical, electrical, or mechanical hazards.
From 1985 to 1999, 21 out of the 27 escalator-related deaths were due to falls.

Falls can either be “falls on” or “falls from” escalators. “Falls from,” also called “falls over-the-side,” involves a person falling outside of an escalator into an adjacent open space, while “falls on” or “falls down” involves a person who remains inside an elevator wellway as he/she falls.

Despite the many incidences of injuries and deaths due to escalator accidents, escalator hazards, which the escalator industry has known for decades and which they can easily correct through safer designs, have often been obscured even in litigations. This is because of the overwhelming success of the escalator industry in convincing both the media and accident investigators that accidents, especially falls, are due to intoxication, horseplay, and gross misuse.

It is important for the public to know that premises owners and manufacturers of elevators and escalators have contracts which require provision of continuous support and maintenance services, including annual inspection after initial installation. It is also important to note that, rather than horseplay, intoxication or grave misuse, the dangerous conditions which often lead to escalator accidents are maintenance related or failure by the manufacturer to retrofit readily available safety devices – a failure premises owners choose to overlook. These are actually nothing short of acts of negligence, the basis of many premises liability litigations and claims.

The Ali Mokaram law firm says that anyone who gets injured in an escalator accident should never hesitate pursuing legal action against the liable party to seek compensation for their injuries. Compensatory damages are designed to help the injured pay for the costs of recovering after the injury. These damages often include things such as lost wages, property damages, and lawyer fees.

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Bad Driving Performance and Employer Negligence: Factors that Cause Truck Accidents

Feb 8, 2017 by

According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, 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 are despite the facts that both the U.S. Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) have created laws and strictly enforce these laws that are directed towards significantly reducing road accidents involving trucks.

Despite efforts from the government, however, bad driving performance and company or employer negligence continue to keep the number of truck accidents high. 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 was passed. This Act strictly mandates the removal of bad drivers from the road. Allowing drivers to continue operating a truck despite multiple traffic violations, especially a DUI or driving under the influence 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 and severely injure or kill 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 get in touch with a highly-skilled personal injury lawyer (as soon as possible) after an accident for them to immediately receive justice and the compensation which the court may find them worthy to claim.

It is explained in the website of the law firm Ali Mokaram & Associates, P.C., that “18 wheelers are an important way for U.S. companies to transport goods across the nation. However, these trucks are some of the largest and most difficult vehicles to operate on roads and highways. Their enormous weight and size make basic driving maneuvers, such as lane switching, braking, and turning, difficult for even the most seasoned truck drivers. There are many safety procedures in place for 18 wheelers and their drivers, but when drivers fail to adhere to such procedures, commercial vehicle accidents can result in serious injury and even death.

Individuals involved in an 18 wheeler accident can attest to the severity of damage caused by these massive vehicles. These giants may be necessary to deliver the goods consumers need, but when the negligence of a driver or a transportation company causes injuries to an innocent victim, they need to pay compensation to those who suffered.”

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Understanding Texas Drug Charges: Marijuana Possession

Jan 10, 2017 by

While a number of states in America are beginning to decriminalize or legalize marijuana use, there are many other states where mere possession of the drug could lead to serious penalties. In Texas, for example, marijuana possession is a criminal charge that can result to penalties requiring significant fees and even prison time. According to Nashville criminal defense attorney Brent Horst, penalties for possession charges are the less severe compared to those of other drug charges. However, being convicted of marijuana possession can have a profound effect on a person’s reputation.

The specific penalties for a marijuana possession will be decided on by the court following several factors. Texas courts might consider whether the individual has any previous convictions. The court will also consider the amount or marijuana that an individual is found to be carrying. Carrying 2 ounces of marijuana or less is considered a misdemeanor charge, often requiring up to $2,000 in fines and about 180 days in jail. Possessing 2 to 4 ounces of marijuana, another misdemeanor charge, is penalized with paying up to $4,000 in fines and a year of jail time.

Possession of marijuana in amounts larger than 4 ounces is considered a felony. Carrying up to 5 pounds or marijuana can lead to a sentence of 6 to 24 months in state jail with fines of about $10,000. Meanwhile, more than 5 to 50 pounds of marijuana can lead to 2 to 10 years of prison time with up to $10,000 fines. Carrying marijuana that amounts to more than 50 pounds can lead to a sentence of life imprisonment with up to $50,000 in fines.

With the help of an experienced lawyer, these penalties can be still be reduced following an individual’s specific circumstances. It might even be possible to avoid a conviction altogether. Seek out appropriate legal counsel to learn more.

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Mesothelioma: The Dangers of Asbestos

Jan 9, 2017 by

Before the 1980s, asbestos was common component in a wide variety of materials for construction, automation, and industrial use due to its unique resistance to heat, fire, electrical, and chemical damage. These seemingly indestructible naturally occurring minerals have thin microscopic fibers that later proved to affect the human body in dangerous ways.

Much of the dangerous effects caused by asbestos are because of its microscopic fibers that can easily be inhaled and ingested unknowingly. One of the most alarming ways that asbestos affects the body is through a rare type of cancer known as mesothelioma. This condition targets the lining of internal organs, causing tumors to grow in different areas of the body. Mesothelioma is known to typically affect the chest and abdomen due to the manner that asbestos enters the body, but it can also cause tumors to grow in the heart and even the reproductive organs. The asbestos attorneys at Williams Kherkher also add other medical conditions that can arise from asbestos exposure, such as scarring in the lungs.

Mesothelioma is particularly alarming because it can take years before any symptoms show up. Patients can be exposed to asbestos for a long time and not be aware of how it affects their health. Unfortunately, this makes the cancer particularly hard to detect. When finally detected, the cancer is often too far progressed to be properly treated.

If you are in an environment where you are at risk for asbestos exposure, be mindful of your health and take note of any possible symptoms you experience. Symptoms for mesothelioma affecting the chest cavity are coughing, shortness of breath, fatigue, fever, trouble swallowing, excessive sweating, and pain in the chest, sides, and lower back. Common symptoms for mesothelioma in the abdomen are pain and swelling in the abdomen, vomiting, nausea, and extreme weight loss.

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Taxatore and Permanent Hair Loss

Jan 8, 2017 by

Cancer affects thousands of individuals across the United States. According to the American Cancer Society, an estimated 57,740 new cancer cases has been tallied in the country for the year 2016 alone. The patients affected by this disease undergo rigorous treatment plans, most of them including chemotherapy.

A common chemotherapy drug administered to patients in the US is called Taxotere, also known by its generic name Docetaxel. While the drug has been known to show notable efficacy, it came with side effects not uncommon to other forms of chemotherapy medication. There was, however, one side effect that proved to be particularly alarming. As warned by the Food and Drug Administration or FDA in 2015, Taxatore has been found to cause permanent alopecia or hair loss.

According to Williams Kherkher, litigation against Taxatore manufacturer Sanofi-Aventis showed data that approximately 10 to 15 percent of women that used the drug during chemotherapy reported no sign of hair growth even after as long as 10 years since they were last on the medication. Of course, hair loss is a well-known side effect of chemotherapy, but hair growth is expected after 3 to 6 months of stopping treatment.

Additional lawsuits point to evidence of Sanofi-Aventis having long been aware of the links between Taxotere and permanent alopecia since the 1990s, deliberately concealing this knowledge in order to downplay the risks involved to taking the drug. Williams Kherkher also point to statements from whistleblower that alleged how Sanofi-Aventis incentivized doctors who prescribed
Taxotore to their patients, by paying them kickbacks, raising the company’s revenue to over a billion dollars by the year 2004.

Patients that have used Taxatore for chemotherapy reported experiencing lack of any hair growth in the eyelashes, eyebrows, underarms, and around the genital area. Many also suffered from baldness and total hair loss in the scalp and body. If you are among the many patients affected by permanent hair loss due to Taxatore, do not hesitate to consult with a Taxotere lawsuit attorney to learn more about your legal options.

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What is Premises Liability?

Jan 6, 2017 by

When a person is injured within a property or in the parameters of a given premises, the owner may be found legally liable if it can be proven that the accident occurred due negligent upkeep. In personal injury or tort law, a case following this scenario falls under premises liability. Through local, state, and federal regulations, property owners are expected to ensure the safety of their premises and all facilities within it. When these expectations aren’t met and a person becomes injured because of it, negligent property owners may find themselves accountable to the court, having to meet penalties and providing compensation to the victim and their family.

New Hampshire personal injury lawyer from Crowe & Mulvey pointed out that the most common cases of premises liability are typically slip and fall accidents, dog bites, swimming pool injuries, elevator and escalator accidents, porch and stair collapse, fires, and poisoning caused by lead paint or mercury. According to Houston personal injury attorneys of Williams Kherkher, premises liability accidents are also common in amusement parks. These accidents are often caused by operator negligence, mechanical failure, and defective ride designs.

A premises liability case is decided upon by the court based on several factors. The first thing that they look at is the severity of the injury caused by the accident. Next, they might also consider the nature of the victim’s visit. Individuals that visit a given property can be classified as an invitee, a licensee, or a trespasser. Of all these three classifications, a victim that is found to have trespassed in a given property will have the least amount of legal protection. It may still be possible for a trespasser to be awarded compensation, but it will usually depend on the specific circumstances of the case.

All in all, filing an injury lawsuit is a good course of action after a premises liability accident. If you or a loved one has been injured due to unsafe conditions in a specific property, do not hesitate to reach out to a lawyer for legal counsel.

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Divorce Issues: Understanding Alimony

Jan 5, 2017 by

While divorce legally dissolves the marriage of a couple, those that go through the process are not able to completely forgo of the bonds they’ve made with one another so easily. Many of the couples that opt for divorce share responsibilities they can’t easily shake. This is especially applicable for parents who would like to continue being equally involved in the upbringing of their children, and those who are in situations where one half of the couple is in a financially better position than the other. Alimony payment issues are the particular concern of those described by the latter scenario.

A lot of people that go through a divorce can experience significant financial hardship after the marriage is finalized. As the Law Offices of Daniel Jensen, P.C., there are many couples who keep their assets together, and some where one couple is designated as the primary earner while the other is focused on childcare. Whatever the case, alimony payments ensure that individuals that had been financially dependent on their spouses are allowed support while they reach a more self-sustaining financial situation.

Alimony payments are made by the spouse determined by the court to have much better financial prospects than the other. The court will decide on the amount by considering factors like each spouse’s age, health status, as well as their individual financial status and income opportunities. It will also be the court to decide the manner in which the alimony payments will be made and for how long.

According to the Fort Worth divorce attorneys of The Maynard Law Firm, disputes over alimony usually stem from one’s failure to meet the required payments. This may be solved through litigation, with the court having to enforce stricter guidelines for spousal support. There are also cases when alimony agreements can be modified. With legal assistance, the court may make adjustments to the required payments following changes in one party’s financial circumstances.

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How Live Chat Can Be the Life Blood of Your Business

Jan 3, 2017 by

The Internet provides businesses dozens of different ways to engage with their customers and potential customers alike. There is so much technology available to allow businesses to provide better support channels, building more opportunities for conversations and sales. One way this can effectively be done is through live chat.

Live chat is particularly effective for communication and engagement because customers can expect and receive an instant reply. Being able to converse with a live chat representative offers customers a quick service support. Live chat allows customers to browse the information about a business available on the website while continuously being able to ask questions and converse with an agent.

On the other end, live chat services allow agents to have access to tools that can allow them to better assist customers. Some services provide features that allow agents to provide all-around and specialized support to customers. Take Lasso Live Chat, for example, with its immediate chat information delivery, live transfer, analytics integration, CRM integration, as well as highly-trained live chats specialists that can target both English and Spanish speakers.

There are many other benefits to having a live chat service on a business website. Raising customer engagement is a sure way to raise sales and profit. Live chat can also help reduce service costs, considering that live chat is a quick and easy tool that allows agents to efficiently communicate with customers regularly.

Considering these advantages, it’s time that businesses integrate live chat functions on their websites. In today’s fast-paced, technologically driven landscape, customers won’t wait for a reply to a days-old email, nor will they be willing to sit through long tedious minutes of being put on hold while trying to make inquiries through a phone call. Increase customer engagement, sales, and reduce service costs by integrating live chat services to your business today.

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