September 24, 2010

Child Car Seats Prevent Wrongful Deaths in Car Accidents

As personal injury attorneys practicing throughout Miami, Fort Lauderdale and Palm Beach, we continually tell our clients to always place their kids in proper safety seats. Now, the National Highway Safety Administration released statistics which prove that such safety and booster seats are the reason more kids survived car accidents last year.

While the number of such wrongful deaths was only three percent lower than in the prior year, even one life saved is great news. The number of children injured and killed in car accidents is staggering. According to the NHTSA, more than 179,000 kids suffered personal injuries last year. The number of such injuries is reduced due to 96 percent of children younger than three using safety seats.

Unfortunately, only forty-one percent of kids between the ages of four and seven use appropriate booster seats. Parents are encouraged to move their children from front facing seats to booster seats until the kids grow to at least 4 feet 9 inches. Thankfully all states have various laws which required parents to use such car and booster seats.

We appreciate the words of David Strickland, NHTSA Administrator, who stated "...[parents need] to make sure their kids are properly protected on every trip, every time," said NHTSA Administrator David Strickland.

September 23, 2010

Deadly Car Accidents Caused by Cell Phone Use Declines

Not that those of practicing personal injury law in Miami, Ft. Lauderdale or Palm Beach would agree, given the number of deadly accidents we see weekly, but according to data from the Department of Transportation, car accidents resulting in wrongful deaths due to distracted drivers actually dropped last year by six percent.

The Department's statistics indicated that more than 5400 people died due to car accidents caused by distraction in 2009, compared to more than 5,800 such wrongful deaths in 2008. All in all, drivers using cell phones, whether for calling or texting, were cited as a factor in sixteen percent of car crashes and wrongful deaths in both 2008 and 2009. According to the Secretary, the statistics may be skewed because many police departments do not include such cell phone usage in their crash data.

While the statistics are certainly a welcome note, according to the Secretary of Transportation, “We are not talking about numbers, but about lives being broken and people being killed in crashes that are 100 percent preventable.” As personal injury lawyers practicing throughout the State of Florida, we could not agree more with the Secretary's opinions, and we hope all drivers would limit their texting and reading emails while driving on our roadways.

September 10, 2010

Study Shows Decline in Car Accidents and Personal Injuries in Florida

In some surprisingly good news for motorists, the United States Department of Transportation reported that personal injuries and wrongful deaths from car accidents dropped to their lowest level in almost six decades. The study demonstrated that Florida, including Miami, Broward and Palm Beach Counties, enjoyed a reduction of more than fourteen percent in such deadly collisions.

According to the statistics, wrongful deaths from car and truck accidents dropped almost ten percent last year. Thankfully, the number of wrongful deaths from motorcycle accidents dropped as well. The statistics also showed a drop of more than seven percent in drunk driving involved deaths. However, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, alcohol played a role in more than 10,000 car accident deaths last year.

While the reasons for these reductions are being associated with improved vehicle crash-worthiness and the poor economy, whatever the cause, we, as attorneys representing innocent victims of such deadly car accidents, welcome the results.

September 8, 2010

Bus Accident in West Palm Beach County Requires Strange Rescue

In what sounds like a television episode, a recreation vehicle in western Palm Beach County, which was transporting more than a dozen senior citizens, crashed into an embankment on S.R. 80, resulting in personal injuries to two passengers. According to Palm Beach County officials, the single vehicle collision was the result of speed and the wet condition of the roadway.

While the accident itself was not unusual, how the paramedics rescued the occupants was. The crash left the bus stopped at an angle, making it difficult for the elderly occupants to be removed. So, Fire Fighters had to hitch the bus to a fire rescue truck for stability. Then rescuers placed the passengers on a stretcher affixed to a ladder and pulled the passengers out through a window to safety. Sounds like a job for CSI.

September 7, 2010

Builder's Violation of ADA Causes Trip and Fall

Recently we had the pleasure of representing an innocent pedestrian who suffered serious personal injuries after tripping and falling due to a builder's violation of the Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA). Our client, who suffered multiple injuries including a rotator cuff tear, was walking along a sidewalk in Miami, when she came upon an area under construction. The builder had erected a temporary sidewalk, made of wood, presumably for pedestrians to bypass the construction site.

Unfortunately, the builder failed to properly maintain the wooden sidewalk, allowing the wood to root. Due to the rotten wood, the pedestrian crashed through the sidewalk, tripping and falling to the ground. Investigation revealed that the builder violated ADA standards by using wood to construct its temporary sidewalk. Additionally, our investigation proved that the builder failed to properly maintain its improper sidewalk. Had the builder followed the industry requirements, this preventable fall would not have occurred.

Too often we confront uncaring builders and construction companies who continually do what is cheap and fast, rather than what is mandated and necessary. We continually pursue cases like this one to hopefully remind the construction industry of their duty to the general public.