Negligence / Other Injuries: Injured
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Negligence and Other Injuries

Negligence is the most commonly used legal principle in personal injury lawsuits. Essentially, the concept of negligence rests on the idea that the defendant owed some sort of a duty to the injured party and that duty was somehow breached. The duty is usually breached through an action or inaction of the defendant. The breach of the injury must have been the proximate cause of the injury.

There also exists an element of foreseeability in negligence. For there to be a valid negligence claim, the injury must have been foreseeable in the actions (or inaction) of the defendant and the injured party must have been within a "zone of danger". The concept of foreseeability is sometimes different among the states but the general premise is the same.

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Lifeguards may seem like towering figures with their tall posts and zinced noses, but they can be liable for swimming injuries and deaths when they make mistakes.

For this reason, lifeguards are required to be certified and trained to deal with common emergencies that occur in and around pools. Different states' safety standards are not always identical, but they form a general patchwork of legal liability for when lifeguards falter in their duties.

For swimmers, here are three things you should know about lifeguard liability:

Law enforcement authorities have stated that no one will be charged criminally in the fatal shooting of an Arizona gun range instructor killed when a nine-year-old girl lost control of the fully automatic Uzi submachine gun she was firing, reports ABC News.

But accidents that cause death, even ones that don't involve criminal conduct, often result in wrongful death lawsuits or other civil litigation.

Who, if anyone, might be liable for this tragic accident?

McDonald's patron Klaus Geier is suing the fast food giant after an incident in which his OJ allegedly came with an unexpected surprise -- a plastic spear which lodged itself in his throat.

According to TMZ, when Geier tried to extract the foreign object from his mouth, a serrated spear deployed and fired itself into his esophagus. This may sound like a bad horror movie, but to Geier the nightmare is real. After finally wrenching the spear and its casing from his throat, Geier asserts he suffered severe throat injury.

Could this OJ suit be the next McDonald's hot coffee case?

In a frat house accident last week, an 18-year-old girl was impaled in the neck by a broken golf club.

Natalie Jo Eaton, a student at Arkansas State University, was hospitalized after "rush" activities at the Kappa Alpha frat house. According to Little Rock's KARK-TV, students were using the golf club as a bat to hit a tossed football when the shaft broke, sending the broken end sailing 30 feet before it lodged itself in Eaton's neck.

How serious were Eaton's injuries, and who might be held legally responsible?

A Virginia woman has filed a $1 million lawsuit against the operators of a Maryland amusement park after one of the park's rides allegedly left her son with a serious brain injury.

In a lawsuit filed in federal court last month, Raffinee McNeill asserts her then-2-year-old son suffered a fractured skull in 2012 at Trimper's Rides and Amusements, a historic amusement park in Ocean City, Maryland. McNeill claims her son has lingering health issues as a result of the accident, and has continued to incur significant medical expenses, reports The Baltimore Sun.

What does McNeill claim happened to her son, and what will she need to prove to prevail in court?

A former Nebraska beauty queen is still fighting in court after being thrown into the air by a charging bull at a county fair in 2010.

Jessica Littlejohn claims the Scotts Bluff County Fair was negligent in failing to restrain or secure the bull, which broke loose and charged her. The former pageant queen allegedly suffered a brain and closed head injury as well as "personal, psychological, and emotional injuries," reports the Scottsbluff Star Herald.

Her original suit against the County Fair had some hiccups, but how does Littlejohn's bull case look now?

A Utah woman is fighting for her life after drinking sweet tea contaminated with a toxic cleaning solvent.

The 67-year-old woman was eating lunch at a Dickey's Barbecue restaurant near Salt Lake City, and filled her cup with sweet tea from a self-serve drinking fountain, reports The Associated Press. After taking one sip of the drink, she told her husband, "I think I just drank acid." She was taken to a local hospital where she remained in critical condition for four days after the incident.

What was the toxic substance, and how did it end up in this grandmother's tea?

College parties have certainly been known to occasionally get out of control.

A spring-break party near the University of California, Santa Barbara earlier this year turned ugly when a campus police officer tried to arrest a partygoer...but ended up with 44 injuries and more than 100 arrests, reports The Associated Press.

If you're injured at a college party, can you sue?

Satellite-TV provider DirecTV is being sued for allegedly bringing a registered sex offender into a customer's house during a service call.

Wahren Scott Massey has been a registered sex offender in Texas since 1998, but in 2012 he accompanied a DirecTV subcontractor into a customer's house during a service call. According to Dallas-Fort Worth's WFAA-TV, Massey was left in a room with the customer's 12-year-old daughter, who caught him snapping photos of her on his cell phone.

Massey was arrested, pleaded guilty to a pair of crimes, and is now in prison. So what liability is DirecTV potentially facing over this sex offender incident?

Social media can be a great tool for sharing your emotions to the world, but it can also end up sabotaging your injury claims.

Just last week, Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson posted a photo of the car crash his mother and cousin survived on Instagram, along with a caption expressing his emotions about the incident. Although many of his words were heartfelt, Johnson did mention that his first reaction was to "find the person who did this and do unrelenting harm to them," reports The Huffington Post.

Will Johnson's angry Instagram aside prevent his relatives from quickly settling their case? That's yet to be seen, but here are three common ways social media posts like Johnson's can potentially sabotage an injury claim: