Posts by Peach

Car Defects: A Result of a Car Manufacturer’s Negligence

Posted by on Dec 12, 2016 in Product Liability | 0 comments

It is the task of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) to save lives by passing and enforcing laws that will reduce road accidents and prevent anyone from getting injured in a car accident. This task is partly accomplished by the NHTSA by making sure designers and makers of cars comply with federal standards (particularly those mandated under the Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Systems or FMVSS) on vehicle safety and excellence. This is the federal government’s way of making sure that all manufactured car passenger vehicles, prior to leaving the manufacturing plant, are designed safely and do not contain defective parts that will put lives at risk.

Despite federal standards and the NHTSA’s implementation of laws, however, cars with defects (either in design or part) continue to be sold, making their presence on the road possible threat to road safety and turning what may be a non-injurious or non-fatal car crash into an injurious or fatal accident. The consequences of these defects are vehicle recalls, made either by the manufacturers themselves or by the NHTSA through a court order.

Over the past years, some of the various causes of recalls and the affected number of vehicles include:

  • Suspension bolt coming loose and disabling the steering column, which affected 5.8 million General Motors cars in 1981;
  • Fuel lines that cracked and spilled gasoline onto the engine, setting the vehicle on fire, which affected 11,500 Ford Escapes from Ford Motor Company;
  • Blowing tires from Firestone, which had tire treads that separated from the steel belts. About 6.5 million of these faulty tires got recalled, but after it was linked to 200 deaths;
  • Car ignition that started up by itself, which affected 7.9 million Ford vehicles manufactured between 1988 and 1993;
  • Unintended acceleration, which resulted to cars speeding up on their own. This affected the Audi 5000 in the 1980s and about 9 million 2010 Toyota car models; and,
  • Cruise Control Switches, which affected about 14.9 million Ford cars and trucks manufactured between 1991 and 2004.

Based on 2013 NHTSA records, more than 10 car manufacturers recalled as many as 22 million vehicles due to defective parts, like seat belts, tires, steering wheel, child seats, brake pads, wipers, and air bags that just deploy despite the vehicle not crashing. In 2004, though, vehicle recall hit a high of 30.8 million. Defects make car accidents one of the leading causes of serious injury and wrongful death in the United States each year, and the sad truth is, if not because of these, then far too many accidents could easily be prevented.

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Complications of Bone Fracture

Posted by on Sep 24, 2016 in Personal Injury | 0 comments

Broken bone or bone fracture refers of a break or a crack in a bone. This happens whenever a force that is stronger than the bone can withstand is exerted against it. While the most common sites for bone fractures are the hips, arms and legs, there are also cases wherein fractures occur to the skull and ribs (fractures to these parts can present life-threatening injuries).

Besides pain, swelling, bruising, deformity and inability to use the limb, bone fractures can also cause other complications, including blood loss, stunted growth of the bone, and injuries to organs, tissues and other structures surrounding the injured bone.

The most common causes of bone fracture are traumatic sporting accidents, falls and vehicle accidents. Osteoporosis and certain types of cancer which cause the bones to fracture more easily present risks, such as making even a fall accident end up with serious results. While some bone fractures will only require a plaster cast or the surgical insertion of plates or metal rods which will hold the bone pieces together, complicated fractures usually require surgery and surgical traction.

Among the many types of motor vehicles, bone fractures are most common among motorcycle riders. This is due to the lack of body protection except the helmet (the helmet should comply with government standards to ensure enough cushion to the head in case of certain types of accidents).

The risk to accidents and injuries motorcycle riders are exposed to is often due to drivers of passenger vehicles failure to deny motorcyclists their right of way. Most often too, drivers never check for possible approaching motorcycles before making a turn, before backing up in parking lots or before opening their car door.

According to the Spiros Law Firm, though broken bones may be reset and scarred tissue may be corrected, these injuries may cause long-term issues with mobility and chronic pain that will necessitate continued medical treatment. Often, those injured and their families become subjected to financial difficulties due to the cost of medical treatment associated with the injury. Taking legal action against those who are fault in the accident that caused the bone fracture, in order to recover compensation for any past and future expenses resulting from the accident, may just help victims get the necessary medical treatment and care needed to help them recover faster.

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Sometimes, Car Accidents are Out of Your Control

Posted by on May 27, 2016 in Personal Injury | 0 comments

Vehicles can get into road accidents in a number of ways. Even when you are very careful when driving and have properly maintained the condition of your vehicle, there are outside factors that can cause car collisions that are beyond your control. Among the most common outside factors that cause car accidents are poor road conditions. When accidents occur because of road problems, who can be held liable?

When the cause of the car accident is due to potholes, wet roads, construction zones, or many other road conditions, then the government agency in charge of ensuring the maintenance and safety of the road can be held liable for the accident, but there are situations where a third party can be responsible. Williams Kherkher states on its website that it is important to first determine who is to be held accountable if you are considering of filing for personal injury claim.

A government agency can be held accountable for a car accident because they are responsible for maintaining the conditions of the roads, and are therefore accountable for any damages that result from roads are not kept reasonably safe for motorists. Not all damages caused by poor road conditions can be held against the government agency. In order for a car accident claim to be legally valid, the cause of the accident should be due to the government agency being “unreasonable” in keeping the road safe, either by not addressing the road issues after they had been reported or neglect in regular inspections that lead to the poor road conditions. The government should have enough time to fix the road problems or otherwise put enough warnings for motorist about the conditions for them to be off any legal hook after a car accident.

The bottom line in filing a personal injury claim against a government agency after a car accident is by proving two important factors: first, that they knew about the poor conditions of the road (or should have reasonable knowledge about it) and second, that they did not fix the problem within a reasonable amount of time which lead to the car accident.

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Mechanical Auto Defects

Posted by on Jan 6, 2016 in Personal Injury, Product Liability | 0 comments

Passenger vehicles are designed with safety and function in mind. When an automobile manufacturer fails to comply with federal safety standards in their vehicles, the driver of that vehicle may suffer through increased risk of a car accident. Automotive defects are expensive to fix and more costly when they defect causes an accident because a permanent injury or the life of an unsuspecting driver is priceless.

The Law Office of Charles D. Hankey states on its website that the most product liability cases for mechanical defects involve negligence, strict liability, and breach of warranty by auto manufacturers. A manufacturer is responsible for the products it develops, produces, and sells to consumers. When there are defective products on the market, consumers are left at risk and with the burden of fixing the problem before becoming injured. For many, the car defect is unknown until it is too late and an accident already occurred.

An accident attorney would probably tell you that automotive defects are not entirely uncommon. Some of the most frequently reported vehicle manufacturer defects involve seat belts, brakes, tires, airbags, and child car seats. These important safety features are imperative for a driver to be safe on the road. When a defect occurs in any of the previously listed areas, a driver and their passengers could suffer head injuries, back injuries, broken bones, or even death. As such, it is a serious issue when a car is defective and that manufacturer negligence causes an accident.

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Accidents Resulting in Burn Injuries

Posted by on Sep 1, 2015 in Health, Personal Injury | 0 comments

Burns are among the most painful types of injuries anyone can suffer from and it is often surprising how even the slightest burns can sometimes cause unbearable pain.

Accidents that cause burn injuries usually happen in the home more than in the workplace or anywhere else. In fact, records from the National Burn Repository (NBR) of the American Burn Association (ABA) show that 73% of all burn accidents in the US are household-related (workplace accidents only total to 8%) and the most common victims are children and senior citizens.

There are different classifications of burns, each identified based on what caused them:

  • Thermal burn injury – This is caused by heat from boiling water, hot tap water, hot grease/oil, steam, hot food, hot drink, fire, stove, firework, curling irons and flammable liquids. The most common type of burn injury suffered by children and senior citizens is scald, which is caused by any type of boiling or very hot liquid.
  • Chemical burn injury – Chemical burns are caused by strong acids, bases and other irritants. Some of the very common products that cause chemical burns are pool chemicals, drain cleaners, car battery acid, cleaning products, ammonia, bleach and teeth whitening products.
  • Electrical burn injury – Besides burning the skin, electrical burns can also result to life-threatening internal injuries. Electrical burns can be caused by power lines, short-circuit devices, lightning and the many different kinds of electrical objects.
  • Radiation burn injury – This refers to damage to the skin or tissues due to radiation exposure. Sunburn, which is caused by UV radiation, is the common type of radiation burn; the dangerous types, however, are those caused by nuclear radiation, radio frequency energy, thermal radiation and ionizing radiation.

The severity of skin and tissue damage caused by burns determines what degree of burn a person is suffering from. Burns that affect only the skin’s outer layer are called first-degree or minor burns. These cause reddening of the skin and pain, though the pain these cause is not as unbearable as that caused by second degree burns, which affect the layer beneath the skin.

Some medical professionals say that the worst type of burn injury is a third-degree burn, which damages all of the skin’s three layers (the epidermis, or the skin’s top layer; the dermis; and, the subcutaneous fat, which attaches the dermis to the muscles and bones and the area where blood vessels and nerve cells get bigger and go to the other parts of the body). Others, however, add fourth degree burns, which affect the muscles and bones.

The worst and most dangerous burn degree (whether third or fourth) is also known as full thickness burn due to its depth and extent of damage. Despite its severity and, often, fatal effects, it no longer causes any feeling of pain as the nerves have already been damaged. This type of burn injury may also require amputation of the severely damaged limb, or either skin grafting or microsurgery to reconstruct the affected area of the body.

Awful pain and severe trauma, besides disfigured skin (until reconstructed) or death, are the preceding and consequential results of a burn injury. Everything becomes more painful, however, if the accident, which led to the burn injury, were caused by someone else’s careless or negligent act.

According to the website of the Portale Law Firm, negligence is the basis of most personal injury cases; as such, this type of injury is, therefore, preventable. Personal injuries are often followed by a tort action or a civil lawsuit that is filed by victims or their families for the purpose of seeking compensation for the harm caused by defendants’ acts of negligence (some defendants settle with victims to avoid the more costly lawsuits).

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