Injured - The FindLaw Accident, Injury and Tort Law Blog

October 2012 Archives

Preventing Injuries During, After Hurricanes, Storms

Hurricane Sandy is ramping up in parts of the country and one of the threats she's bringing is a risk of injuries from sources that are otherwise safe.

It's not just hurricanes that bring about added danger. Snow storms, tornados, and other natural disasters can leave you in a dangerous position. The biggest risk is that you won't know what to look out for.

Besides making sure you're covered by insurance in case of damage to your home, there are other things you need to think about when it comes to weathering the storm.

3 Most Common Ways to Get Injured on Halloween

Halloween always has the threat of danger from ghouls and goblins. However, the much more likely cause of Halloween injuries is cars and your own costume.

There is no other holiday quite like Halloween, where an armada of young children dressed in strange outfits march around the town at night, knocking on strangers' doors.

But because of the strangeness of Halloween, hospitals are oftentimes very busy dealing with Halloween accidents and injuries. To prepare for the upcoming holiday, Prevention 1st came up with a list of the three most common ways people get injured on Halloween:

Candy Safety Tips for Trick-or-Treating

Aside from the sugar overload that is necessary for a fun Halloween, there are some important things to remember about candy safety.

Every year there are stories of children who get sick or die as a result of unsafe candy and treats. Just because no one is intentionally trying to hurt your child doesn't mean there aren't health concerns you should avoid.

Before your little ghouls and heroes go out trick-or-treating, make sure you have some ground rules to keep them safe this Halloween.

Here are some tips to consider:

Child Porn Victim Filmed at School: Lawsuit

Michael Andrew Alexander has already been sentenced to almost 50 years behind bars for filming child pornography in the school where he taught but the legal system isn't done with him yet.

Earlier this year, Alexander was arrested as part of an international child porn ring and charged with multiple crimes. He pleaded guilty to some of the criminal charges in a plea deal but now the family of one girl he abused has filed a civil lawsuit as well.

While a criminal suit is meant to punish people who endanger public safety, a civil suit is designed to compensate the victim. That's what the family is hoping to do although the harm is serious.

Cheerleading Guidelines Needed, Doctors Say

Cheerleading is an important part of many communities but the activity lacks guidelines to keep young people safe while they do stunts and mid-aid tosses.

The number of injuries associated with cheerleading has gone up significantly over the past few years as has the number of participants. In response, the American Academy of Pediatrics published a set of cheerleading guidelines it hopes schools will follow.

The guidelines are meant for coaches, parents, and school officials and are designed to decrease injuries.

Monster Energy Drinks Tied to 5 Deaths?

Five deaths may have been caused by consumption of Monster Energy Drink. The federal Food and Drug Administration is investigating the deaths as well as one non-fatal heart attack.

Monster Energy Drink markets itself as the "killer energy brew" and "the meanest energy supplement on the planet," reports The Associated Press.

However, the company probably did not expect these taglines to be taken literally. In its defense, the company says that it is unaware of any fatality anywhere that has been definitively linked to its drinks.

What is a Frivolous Lawsuit?

What is a frivolous lawsuit? The phrase may trigger associations with some famous cases, such as the McDonald's spilled coffee case (though that lawsuit was actually not frivolous, for reasons that will be explained below).

Legally speaking, a frivolous lawsuit is one that asserts a legal claim that has no legal merit whatsoever. Because frivolous suits lack merit, they are generally tossed out by courts.

But that's not to say frivolous lawsuits don't lead to legal consequences for the party who filed the nonsense suit, along with legal hassles for the intended target.

Boy Banned from School Over Cystic Fibrosis Gene

Colman Chadam looks like a healthy kid and he is in almost every way; except that he carries the gene for cystic fibrosis.

That was enough to get him kicked out of school at Palo Alto's Jordan Middle School because officials believed he would be a health hazard to other students. Seven weeks into the school year they forced him to transfer to a different middle school a few miles away.

The Chadam's are fighting the decision arguing that their son has never had problems in the past based on his genetics. They've filed a lawsuit claiming the school district went too far.

'Broadway Bomb' Skateboarders Banned by Judge

New York City skateboarders won't be celebrating the annual 'Broadway Bomb' race this year after the event was banned by the city. Or at least, they won't be celebrating it officially.

The race, which goes through an eight-mile stretch of Manhattan down Broadway St, has been going on for 10 years. But the potential size of this year's race and new city regulations conspired against organizer, Ian Nichols.

Nichols has bowed out of the event under the terms of a court order but that may not be enough to stop this annual tradition.

Can I Sue My Employer for No Sick Leave?

A recent study revealed that workers who do not receive paid sick leave are more likely to get injured at work.

The study's findings should not be that surprising as you're likely to be unfocused and distracted when you are sick.

Still, as more employees lose their rights to paid time off, more workers are taking the risk by working sick so that they will not lose any pay. But if you get injured at work, can you blame your employer and sue for not giving you paid time off?

The 3 Home Safety Devices You Need to Have

State and local governments create laws on public health, including regulations meant to improve home safety.

Those laws don't just apply to businesses and public spaces. They can also affect your home or the residential buildings you own as a landlord. Not following those rules can result in a hefty fine or a lawsuit if an injury results from lack of safety equipment.

Never mind the legal ramifications, not having these devices puts you and your family at risk every day. It's not a long list so make sure you have it all.

NC Fair's E. coli Outbreak Sickens 37

Fair-goers at the Cleveland County Fair in North Carolina took home something more sinister than new pet goldfish and candy apples this weekend, many of them came home with E. coli.

The bacteria is a leading cause of food poisoning and so far has affected 46 people, including one little boy who died of the infection. Two-year-old Gage Lafevers passed away from the infection on Friday, reports Charlotte WBTV-TV.

Despite the large number of people who have become ill so far, authorities are still unsure what caused the outbreak. There are many potential sources but none is clearly the culprit.

Chinese Drywall Plaintiffs Finally Going to Collect?

Lawsuits over Chinese-made drywall have moved sluggishly since the first claims were filed in 2009. Part of the problem is determining whether the Chinese manufacturers are bound by U.S. law, an issue lawyers and judges call 'jurisdiction.'

One of the manufacturers, Taishan Gypsum, has argued that U.S. courts don't have jurisdiction because the drywall was distributed in the U.S. by other companies. But two rulings in the last few months have undermined that claim.

The rulings, one in Florida and one in Louisiana state that the Chinese company can be sued for their role in making allegedly defective products. But the case is far from over.

First Lawsuit Filed Over Meningitis Outbreak

The meningitis outbreak that stemmed from contaminated pain medication has over a hundred victims so far but only one has filed a lawsuit.

Barbe Puro received a steroid injection for chronic back pain in September and shortly after the injection she suffered headaches and nausea. But she was later informed that the shots she received may have been contaminated. To test for meningitis Puro had to undergo a painful spinal tap, reports Bloomberg Businessweek.

Her lawsuit seeks to hold the company responsible for the injuries she suffered and for the injuries suffered by everyone who received the tainted drugs.

Pregnant Woman Tased, Sues for Miscarriage

Chicago-resident Cherese Morris was only two months pregnant when police arrested her so forcefully she claims it caused a miscarriage.

Morris says she was talking on her cell phone on the night of the arrest back in 2011. The police treated her roughly during the arrest, 'violently' put her face-down in the back of the squad car and tased her until she passed out, according to the complaint.

Two weeks later, Morris lost her baby. Now she's turned to the legal system for justice.

Roach-Eating Contest Turns Fatal for Contestant

A winner of a live roach eating contest collapsed to his death shortly after winning the South Florida event.

Edward Archbold was the winner/victim of the contest at the Ben Siegel Reptile Store. The 32-year-old man downed dozens of live roaches and other bugs to win the contest. He beat out 30 other contestants and took home the grand prize -- a python.

Investigators are still looking into the cause of death and it's unsure if eating the live insects caused the man to die. The store owner who held the contest said that Archbold appeared healthy before the start of the contest and was just having fun and showing off, reports The Associated Press.

Southwest Sued Over Hot Tea Burns

Southwest Airlines is in hot water over a cup of tea that burned a passenger who flew with the airline back in December.

Angelica Keller was sitting in the front row of a flight in December 2011 when she asked for a cup of tea. Passengers in the first row didn't have tray tables to hold their drinks. When Keller received her tea it came as a cup of hot water that was tucked in a second cup containing a tea bag.

Keller struggled to get the tea bag out of the cup and in doing so spilled the hot water on her lap. The injuries she suffered are the basis of her lawsuit.

NY Man Sues Gun Manufacturer for Getting Shot

A gun manufacturer is being sued for injuries to a shooting victim.

New Yorker Daniel Williams was shot nearly a decade ago. In an unusual lawsuit, he then sued Ohio-based gun manufacturer Beemiller, distributor MKS Supply, and the dealer of the pistol used to shoot him.

Lawsuits against gun manufacturers and distributors are relatively rare because there's a federal law that insulates them from such liability, reports Reuters. However, a New York appeals court overturned an earlier decision and allowed Williams to go ahead with his lawsuit.

Stripper Slid Down Pole, Ruptured Man's Bladder

A Pennsylvania man is suing the Penthouse Club near Philadelphia for injuries he says he suffered when a stripper slid down the stripper pole too hard onto his lap.

Patrick Gallagher was celebrating his impending marriage with a bachelor's party at the Penthouse Club when his friends got him the club's "Bachelor's Package." As part of the package, the man was invited onstage and got some very personal attention from the dancers, reports the Philadelphia Daily News.

However, one stripper may have gotten a little too close for comfort. She reportedly asked Gallagher to lay down underneath the stripper pole and then slid down the pole onto his abdomen.

Car Accident Checklist: 5 Things to Do at the Scene

If you get behind the wheels of a car, chances are at some point in your life you will get into some kind of car accident. As a result, you will need a car accident checklist of what to do following the accident.

The most critical moments following a car accident are the moments immediately after. There are several things you will need to take care of at the scene of the accident, which usually cannot be recreated later on.

Here are five things you should do following an accident:

Philly Cop to be Fired Over Assault on Woman

Assault is not an acceptable way to deal with a situation especially if you're a cop. A Philadelphia officer learned this lesson last week.

Lieutenant Jonathan Josey received a 30-day suspension with intent to fire after an incident that took place on Sunday. A video captured Josey hitting a woman in the face during the Puerto Rican Day Parade. At the time he suspected her of throwing liquid on him although it later became clear she wasn't the one who did it.

Regardless of whether she threw the liquid on him, the Philadelphia Police Commissioner decided that Josey's action would not have been justified.

Does George Zimmerman Have a Case Against NBC?

George Zimmerman may be largely considered a pariah in the court of public opinion but he claims that's the fault of NBC and not his own actions.

Zimmerman is of course famous for his role in the death of Trayvon Martin. Almost a month after the incident NBC aired a tape of a non-emergency call from Zimmerman to police. In the recording it sounds like Zimmerman volunteered that Martin was black, leading critics to call him a racist.

Then it became clear that NBC had edited the tape and that the statement was in reply to a question that wasn't aired in the broadcast.

Zimmerman's lawyer, Mark O'Mara, claims it's more than just unfair; it's enough for a lawsuit.

How Not to Get Injured While Tailgating

The leaves are changing color, there's a chill in the air, no mistaking it: it's football season and that means bring on the tailgate parties.

There's not a whole lot better than getting together with friends on a Sunday before the game to grill and have a few beers before you head into the stadium. But given the surroundings there are some things you need to be careful about.

This time we aren't talking about drinking and driving; we're assuming you know that's never a good combination. These safety tips are about concerns that come up during the party.

NY Teacher Sues School for Getting Beat Up By 1st Grader

A New York public school teacher is planning to bring a lawsuit against the city claiming that he was attacked and beat up at school. The alleged perpetrator? A 50-pound first grade student barely over four-feet tall.

To make matters worse, the teacher claiming injury is a 220-pound hulk of a man, and former college running back, reports the New York Post.

The teacher, 27-year-old John Webster, said that he was accompanying a group of first graders to the cafeteria for lunch. That's when the alleged perp started horsing around prompting Webster to chide him. Unbeknownst to Webster, the child channeled his inner Bruce Lee and karate-kicked the teacher and several others, reports the Post.

3 Unexpected Injury Hazards at Football Stadiums

When you go watch a football game, you expect the injuries to happen on the field of battle. After all, 300-pound men who can run 40 yards in less than five seconds are not charging down the field to hit you. Still, you may be surprised at the amount of football stadium injuries to befall fans.

Fan injuries can range from the comical to the tragic. And the source of injuries are usually not from where you would expect.

Here are our top three unexpected ways that a football fan can get injured while attending a game:

Can I Sue My Noisy Neighbor?

At some point, we've all been stuck with an inconsiderate, obnoxious neighbor. But when your neighbor insists on loud pumping music very late at night, every night, you may have reached the point where you're wondering whether you can sue your noisy neighbor.

The easy answer is "yes." If your neighbors' noise is bothering you and nothing you have done to resolve the situation has worked, you have every right to file a lawsuit.

But whether you have a winning lawsuit and what kind of damages you can expect will depend upon the specific facts of your case and just how noisy your neighbor really is.