How You Can Prevent Motorcycle Accidents

By on 9-16-2017 in Vehicle Accidents

Owning and maintaining a motorcycle can be an incredibly rewarding and money saving experience. Spending less money upfront and less money on gas over the life of your vehicle combined with the freeing feeling of the open road can make a motorcycle a more attractive option than a traditional car. However, the biggest trade-off is that motorcycles do not come with nearly the number of safety features. As motorcycle accidents can be some of the most life-threatening, it is important to take a look at why more and more are happening each year.

According to this article from Ottawa Citizen in August 2014, motorcycle accidents were on the rise and were projected to hit a 7-year high in Ontario alone. This article aims to dispel some common myths about motorcycle accidents that are still relevant today in 2017. Out of 175 fatal accidents that occurred over a 7 year period prior to 2014, drivers other than the bikers were partly responsible in over half of them, and in 50 of them, the bikers were driving perfectly properly at the time of their accident. In addition, most believe that motorcycle accidents happen because drivers are young and inexperienced, but it turns out that only 16 deaths out of the 175 were bikers under the age of 25, and more than half were bikers over the age of 45. Out of these 175 deaths, road conditions were barely a factor at all, with 158 fatalities occurring on dry roads. According to the charts given in the article, the vast majority of the fatalities were male bikers, but in general, there is a higher proportion of male drivers. Because these statistics show that the biker is not to blame for many of these accidents, police officers in Ontario are urging bikers to wear more noticeable clothing and are hoping to work with the public to ensure cyclists are kept safe, since they recognize motorcyclists in general as a safe group of drivers who understand the risks.

This article is important because it dispels many myths about motorcycle accidents. Many people believe that riding a motorcycle is inherently dangerous and that bikers drive recklessly, but with proper training and safety gear, the chance of causing an accident is almost comparable to that of a regular car. Bikers are small, fast, and difficult to spot, so other drivers need to make sure they are completely free of distractions and that they are looking out for them. Thankfully, firms like Mazin & Associates PC, motorcycle accident lawyers in Toronto, exist to protect bikers when they are in an accident that is caused by another driver, as is the case more often than one might think. 

There will always be those who get behind the wheel of a car or the handlebars of a bike and make reckless decisions, but many accidents that happen are just that: accidents. Learning to be more aware of your surroundings when driving will help protect the most vulnerable group of drivers and help the biker community continue doing what they love.

Traffic Accidents in Work Zones

By on 8-25-2017 in Uncategorized

We’ve all seen the warning signs on public roads and highways in Houston and across Texas, warning us to slow down in work zones where construction, road repairs, and other public initiatives are being implemented. Unfortunately, not every driver heeds these warnings, and accidents occur every single day on the busy roads of our great state. Whether it is the ubiquity of work zones (especially in Houston which has seen explosive growth in and around the city in the past decade) or whether people are simply not paying attention, work-zone accidents can have a devastating effect on the driver involved, other drivers on the road, and workers who are on the scene.

According to recent statistics for 2016 by the Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT), there was a total of 25, 814 crashes on and off the highway system in work zones specifically. These numbers are staggering, especially considering the amount of signage that is required by law for construction companies to place on and before a construction site. While a certain number of these crashes either did not report any injuries or were non-injury crashes, a tragic number of them did report either serious injuries or deaths. A total of 749 “incapacitating injuries” were reported, while another 181 people were killed. These numbers are clearly too high for a state that prides itself on neighborly courtesy and care, and it is incredible to think how many of these accidents could have been avoided if the driver or drivers involved had behaved in a cautious and responsible manner.

That’s where public safety initiatives have to step in, to teach individuals of the importance of cautious, courteous driving. Many crashes can be directly attributed to the failure to observe the speed limit, intoxicated driving, distractions behind the wheel (like texting or use of in-car devices), or other reckless or negligent actions. If individuals had paid more attention to their actions and had committed to keeping others safe while behind the wheel, these issues would not occur.

In the event of an injury in a work zone, there is little that can be done once the accident has occurred. Car accident attorneys in Houston like the ones we found in a basic Google search (we found this firm, Williams Kherkher), often have a record of success in helping individuals who have been hurt in an accident take legal action.

It is important for state officials to place a stronger focus on preventing these types of accidents from occurring. While many people drive past work zones each day (and often multiple times per day) it is often easy to ignore the warnings and fail to heed the safe practices that can keep yourself and others safe on the road. What’s more, many people do not realize that they must reduce their speed in zones that often have barricades and may not have accessible shoulder-space to avoid collisions that can result in serious injuries or death to the occupants involved.

The Role of Maintenance in Slip and Fall Accidents

By on 7-31-2017 in Personal Injury

There are many ways for a person to slip, fall violently into the ground, and injure himself. But they have one thing in common – someone has been negligent, and most of the time, it is not the victim.

Property owners are legally obligated to make their properties safe from slip and fall accident hazards. According to the website of Habush Habush & Rottier S.C. ®, those who have been hurt in slip and fall accidents because of negligent property owners may be able to take these property owners to court.

But how does a slip and fall accident happen exactly? There is always a catalyst that triggers the slipping. The slipping leads to a violent fall, and if it is violent enough, it may even result into injury. A slip and fall accident can happen either inside or outside the property, and below are the most common causes:

·       Inside

o   Defective escalators, elevators, or stairs

o   Slippery substances that are unattended, such as pipe leaks and spilled drinks

o   Slippery substances that warrant warning signs, such as floor waxes

o   Worn carpets, rugs, and other textiles

·       Outside

o   Buildup of ice, snow, or water

o   Debris and trash

o   Poor lighting

o   Uneven floors, such as those with cracks and potholes

If you will notice, all these causes are preventable, and in one way or another, all of them are maintenance issues. Facilities like escalators should regularly be inspected. Slippery substances should be cleaned or at least barriered. Worn items should be replaced. The property’s exterior should also be regularly cleaned to avoid buildup of ice, snow, water, and even debris like leaves and rocks. It should also be maintained to avoid pavement defects like cracks and potholes. Last but not least, it should also have adequate lighting to avoid visibility issues that may cause slip and fall accidents.

This is where the property owner’s negligence come into mind. Because the property owner has failed to maintain his premises, and this failure has resulted into a slipping and falling accident and injury, he can be taken to court because of premises liability, under slip and fall accidents.

Why is Workplace Dust Dangerous?

By on 6-15-2017 in Ventilation

Dust is an occupational hazard for all workers out there, from farmers and manufacturing plant workers to bakers and office employees. Here are just some of the different forms of dusts in different industries:

  • Cotton dust, mostly from textiles such as cotton, wool, and even leather
  • Metallic dust, mostly from cadmium, lead, and other industrial and manufacturing materials
  • Mineral dust, mostly from coals, silicas, various rocks, and fibers such as asbestos
  • Organic dust, mostly from grains, animal excrements, and other agriculture and farming materials
  • Wood dust, mostly from wood processes such as cutting, sanding, and scraping

The secret to effective dust exposure prevention is to acknowledge that dust exposure is a risk present in the workplace and it needs an immediate solution. Both the employer and the employee should make the effort of preventing or at least minimizing dust exposure, but it can be argued that the employer has a bigger responsibility.

The employer can rely on simple tactics, like requiring an employee to wear adequate protective gear, or complicated tactics, like installing an adequate ventilation system that can filter dust, such as that from RoboVent.

But why is it so important to prevent dust exposure? It can be a health risk, particularly to the workers because they are the ones who are constantly exposed to the dust or particulate.

Eye Irritation – The eyes are particularly vulnerable if they capture particles, because they have the tendency to be irritated. This can be a minor problem, but it can be also serious, like when the temporary compromised or lost vision can cause an accident or a ripple effect in the workplace.

Skin Irritation – Dusts and other particulates may contain chemicals that irritate the skin, resulting into dryness, itching, redness, and even scaling. There are also instances where these chemicals cause skin cancer.

Lung Complications – Speaking of cancer, dust exposure, especially dust inhalation, may result into lung cancer. But cancer is not the only complication one can sustain, as there is asthma, emphysema, and pneumonia.

Explosions and Associated Injuries – Dusts, especially when collected into clouds, may also spark into a flame, explode, or both. These accidents may result into burns and traumatic injuries from blasts, fires, shockwaves, and flying projectiles.

Common Mistakes in High Net Worth Divorce

By on 2-20-2017 in Divorce

Divorce is already emotionally taxing. But it becomes even more stressful because of all the legalities involved. This is especially true when you have a high net worth, because of the complications associated with assets, properties, and other liabilities.

According to the website of the high net worth divorce attorneys of Kirker Davis LLP, the fair division of these belongings can be very difficult for judges and attorneys handling the case. You don’t want to make the situation worse by committing the following mistakes associated with high net worth divorce.

Letting emotions get in the way
Divorce involve a variety of emotions, such as anger, guilt, jealousy, and relief. But emotion has no place in the divorce process, especially because financial agreements are at stake. Control your anger and jealousy, as your eagerness to get revenge and inflict damage on your partner may result into greater financial damage on your side. If you let guilt and relief take over, you might end up giving up assets unnecessarily.

Signing documents without second thought
Divorce is stressful and it can take a lot of your time, but it doesn’t mean that you can be reckless just to get over it as fast as possible. Always understand the agreements first before signing them. Also, make sure to consult your lawyer to ensure that the agreements go with your best interests.

Failing to account liabilities and assets
A financial affidavit needs to be filled up completely. This is something you should take seriously, because improper accounting of your liabilities and assets might result into taking liabilities that should not be yours and giving up assets that should be yours.

Hiding assets
You may be tempted to hide assets to limit the ones that are at stake of being divided between you and your partner. But this act is almost always exposed, compromising your credibility and casting doubt on all the other actions you have done during the divorce process.

The Zero Tolerance and Anti Texting-while-driving Laws

By on 9-26-2016 in Personal Injury

Drunk-driving, reckless driving, driver error and overspeeding (as well as driving too slowly and too fast during poor road condition) are listed by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) as the top causes of motor vehicle accidents in the U.S. From the more than five million car crashes recorded annually, more than two million individuals suffer injuries, while more than 32,000 lose their lives.

NHTSA reports also show that usual traffic violators, as well as usual victims of fatal car crashes, are young drivers, whose ages range between 17 and 24. Studies show that while young drivers, mostly students, are aware of traffic laws and say that they would never want to share the road with traffic violators, they, themselves, admit of having violated traffic rules when asked about specific road behavior, such as driving under the influence (DUI), texting while driving, speeding, and so forth. These same drivers expressed confident control of the wheel, though, despite the violation, which they said were still safe, based on their own standards.

With the intention of significantly reducing the number of car accidents, which always cause property damages, injuries or death, the NHTSA has become stricter in the enforcement of road safety laws; it has also passed new laws, such as the anti texting-while-driving law. In some states ban has, likewise, been imposed on the use of any type of text-based communications on mobile devices, such as computers and phones, which are used to send text or email messages. This anti texting-while-driving law is aimed at discouraging any act that would cause distraction – a serious threat to pedestrians, other motorists and everyone else on the road.

Another law that was passed (which will limit any chances of DUI among teenage drivers) is the Zero Tolerance Law. According to the website of Spiros Law Firm, this law specifically prohibits those under the age of 21 to drink and drive. Minors who will be caught violating this law are bound to have their driving privileges immediately suspended, as well as suffer the harsh punishments imposed in their state.

Know Your Rights As An Employee

By on 2-15-2016 in Employment Law

The economy these days has made the job market incredibly competitive. This has made people become fearful for their jobs and would tolerate unjust treatment at work for the sake of keeping their means of income. This is not acceptable, of course, as there are numerous laws that are in place that aim to protect the rights of the employee.

For example, if some members of the company (even if they are in the levels of administration) are in a federally fraudulent or dealing with illegal matters, it is the responsibility of the employee to report unlawfulness and crime where it happens without fear of repercussion against their own person. According to Santa Clara University, these people are called whistleblowers—employees who bring wrongdoing at their own organizations to the attention of authorities. According to the website of The Melton Law Firm, whistleblowers are granted protection and rights in the event of circumstances like these, as they should be.

Employees should also feel safe in their workplace environments and this includes safe from discrimination against their gender identity, their race, or their creed. An employee’s wages should also be fair and in accordance to the agreement stated in their contract—and this includes overtime wages as some states even protect undocumented immigrants from unfair or unpaid overtime wages.

It can be tempting to just duck your head and protect your comfortable place with any given job, for fear of losing it—but there are more important things than self-preservation and your rights as well as the rights of those around you, which can only benefit from well-founded righteousness such as standing up for your employment rights.

Is No Fault Divorce Easier than “Fault” Divorce?

By on 2-14-2016 in Family Law

Whichever way you look at it, divorce is a complicated process and, more often than not, it is fueled with conflicting and distressing emotions. However, it isn’t always as simple as a married couple that no longer wants to be together – sometimes, there are other factors that can come into play, which is why there are several different kinds and classifications of divorce.

Two such classifications of divorce are “no fault divorce” and “fault” divorce.

A fault divorce deals with a divorce case as to where one or both parties have committed a fault during the marriage and it is that fault that is the main reason for the marriage. These can come in the forms of domestic abuse cases or situations involving infidelity or desertion for a prolonged, unknown period of time. No fault divorce cases are ones that, however, have both parties at relatively amicable terms with each other and mutually want to terminate the marriage due to irreconcilable differences. According to the CDC, there were 813,862 divorces in 2014, not counting California, Georgia, Hawaii, Indiana, and Minnesota.

Both cases have their own difficulties as, according to the website of Marshall & Taylor, the recent state of the economy has made legal issues difficult to deal with as they can be quite pricey. Not only that but they can also be emotionally draining for everyone involved – especially if there are children involved.

A “no fault divorce” may, at first, seem like the simpler option but it has its own hurdles. According to the website of the lawyers with Holmes, Diggs & Sadler, there are some interests and aspects that must still be protected by either party in order to come together into an agreement that is acceptable to both parties. This process can be lengthy and tedious so, really, neither case is much easier than the other to handle for they both come with their own sets of complications.

If you or someone you know is considering divorce, it is advised to first seek the counsel of a reputable divorce attorney before proceeding.

Why is Medical Malpractice with Personal Injury?

By on 2-13-2016 in Medical Malpractice, Uncategorized

If personal injury cases deal with accidents, how can medical malpractice constitute as a subclass of that particular branch of the law? Let’s break it down.

Personal injury, as according to the website of lawyers Crowe & Mulvey, LLP, is a situation wherein an innocent plaintiff has suffered an injury (which can be physical, mental, emotional, or any combination of the three) and it is due to the negligent actions of a guilty party. There are many different ways as to how a person can be injured due to negligence, hence the need for subclasses of personal injury, and that begs the question as to how medical malpractice fits under that umbrella term.

If a medical professional were to, say, accidentally damage the brain during surgery or have given too much of a certain drug and inadvertently caused overdose, then that is negligence that can be filed under medical malpractice. Those are the most obvious cases however as according to the website of the The Benton Law Firm, there are some medical malpractice cases that are a result of pure carelessness, which constitutes as negligence.

A wrong diagnosis, for example, can be constituted as a case of medical malpractice. According to an article by CBS News, 12 million people are misdiagnosed every year. Say if a patient were to have been diagnosed with something simple when, in reality, they had a subtle but fatal disease that could have been treated if it had been acted upon quickly. It is the responsibility of medical practitioners to deliver their utmost best and practice with the utmost care and precision, given the fragility of what they have to work with: the health and wellbeing of their patients.

It can be a difficult case to pursue, medical malpractice, as the attorney that represents the plaintiff would have to be not only knowledgeable with this complicated branch of the law but must also be comfortable and familiar with the medical landscape that concerns a specific case.