Articles Posted in personal injury

matthew-hamilton-135738-copy-300x200On March 7, Gregory Lopez answered Brenan Brock’s request for a ride on the Uber app. As Lopez drove down I-5 in Orange County around 1 a.m., his 2016 Jeep Compass ran out of gas. Lopez attempted to coast to the right shoulder, but the vehicle came to a full stop in one of the highway lanes. Brock was put in the position of having to get out of the vehicle and help Lopez push the Jeep to the side of the road. Brock, now exposed on the highway, was struck by Jonathan Tavita. Brock suffered such devastating injuries that physicians were forced to amputate both of his legs. Brock filed a lawsuit against Uber, the Uber driver, Uber’s insurance carrier, Hertz, and Tavita in April alleging negligence and negligence infliction of emotional distress.

Uber Crashes

While ridesharing programs like Uber and Lyft are growing in popularity, so are the number of accidents the Uber and Lyft drivers are involved in. Ridesharing drivers are not professional drivers in the sense that they do not have any specific or additional training than what is required to obtain a normal driver’s license. They are just as likely to be careless or reckless behind the wheel as any other driver. It comes as no surprise, then, that many passengers have experienced accidents that caused them injuries like Brock’s.

david-klein-407116-unsplash-copy-240x300In early March, a video was released showing a 5-year-old dangling from a chairlift at Bear Mountain Ski Resort. The young child slipped from the chairlift shortly after it started moving. The child’s ski instructor caught her by her hoodie. During the time she was dangling from the lift, the child was choked by her the hoodie and her helmet. Thankfully, the young girl was able to safely drop to a tarp. She suffered bruising to her neck.

From initial reports, it appears at least two things went wrong. The night before, rain in the area froze, causing ice on the equipment. The child’s parents believe the lifts were not properly cleaned in the morning before being put to use. Also, when the child, her sibling, and the instructor got on the chairlift, the safety bar was not brought down. Bear Mountain officials are investigating the accident to determine what went wrong and how to prevent similar occurrences.

Ski Resorts are Not Liable for All Injuries

matthew-hamilton-135738-copy-300x200On March 23, a San Mateo resident, Wei Huang, 38, passed away after his Tesla Model X collided with a median on Highway 101. The initial collision caused a three-vehicle crash with a Mazda and Audi. The Tesla sustained a significant amount of damage and the exposed lithium ion battery caught fire. In order to combat the fire, local firefighters used the available water source. They also contacted the Palo Alto-based Tesla, and engineers disassembled a part of the car battery on the interstate. The engine was closely monitored afterward since the batteries can reignite for up to 24 hours after cooling.

Accident Leads to Investigation

Following the fatal crash, the U.S. National Transportation Safety Board sent two investigators to review the accident. The NTSB is interested in why the crash occurred, why the battery caught fire, and the procedures used to contain the situation afterward. It is unclear, as of now, whether Tesla’s Autopilot feature was in control of the vehicle at the time or whether Huang was driving.

marcus-zymmer-189542-unsplash-copy-300x200In February, two separate personal plane crashes led to three fatalities. The most recent crash occurred on February 21. Dr. John Serocki, 61, embarked on a solo flight in a single-engine Cirrus SR22T from Montgomery-Gibbs Executive Airport. His plane crashed shortly after takeoff, and he passed away at the scene. No one on the ground was injured. It was not immediately clear why the crash occurred, though it is possible that the engine failed.

Earlier that month, on February 6, a single-engine Cessna 182T crashed after taking off from Gillespie Field. The plane, carrying John and Cherril Longhurst, 70 and 71, respectively, crashed about one mile from the runway.

Both crashes are being investigated by the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) and the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA). If a plane crash investigation determines that the cause of the crash was something other than pilot error, then the surviving family members may have a legal claim against the responsible party.  

miguel-a-ramirez-18261-copy-217x300Due to medical advancements in the past decade, physicians can now cure Hepatitis C, which is a chronic liver disorder. However, the drug regime is extremely expensive, making it inaccessible to a significant percentage of the population that needs it, including prison inmates. Prisoners in California and numerous other states are fighting for access to the cure instead of relying on old and ineffective treatments, many of which have debilitating side effects.

What is Hep C?

Hep C is an infection of the liver caused by a virus. Many people do not exhibit symptoms for a long time, which delays diagnosis. When systems do present, people may experience stomach pain, nausea, loss of appetite, fatigue, and jaundice. People with Hep C may bruise and bleed easily. They could have fluid retention in their abdomen and swelling in their legs. The infection also may lead to confusion and slurred speech.

kholodnitskiy-maksim-198-unsplash-copy-300x200In early March, a Caltrain struck an individual crossing the tracks. The incident occurred just before 8 a.m., south of 22nd Street in San Francisco. The train carried 500 passengers and no one else was injured. After the fatal incident, trains were stopped in both directions and there were significant delays. It is unknown so far why the individual was on the tracks, and there are reports that the individual was trespassing.

While this incident may not lead to legal action, many other train accidents do when they are caused by an operator or railroad company’s negligence. If you were injured in train accident or lost a loved one, do not hesitate to contact a San Francisco train accident lawyer at Brod Law Firm. An experienced attorney can advise you on your rights and legal options after a train accident.

Rail Industry Statistics

adrian-williams-76616-copy-300x200A woman lost her life on Interstate 5 in Solana Beach after being struck by a vehicle. The incident began when a Hyundai Elantra struck a Lincoln LS from behind on I-5. The LS was then forced across the road and struck a traffic control signal at the intersection of Lomas Santa Fe Drive. The woman driving the Hyundai stopped and left her vehicle. Authorities believe she then fled west. The woman crossed the northbound side of the interstate, climbed over a center divide, and was struck by a Ford Fiesta while crossing the southbound lanes. The woman’s identity was not released, and the authorities are still investigating why she fled the scene on foot.

Pedestrian Accidents in California

Based on a June 2017 report published by the California Department of Public Health (CDPH), the rate of fatal pedestrian accidents in California increased 11% between 2007 and 2013. In 2007, the pedestrian fatality rate was 1.8 per 100,000 state residents. This rose to 2.0 per 100,000 residents by 2013. However, pedestrian accidents that only caused injuries feel during that time by 13.5%.

jon-moore-400422-unsplash-copy-300x200In mid-February, the California Supreme Court denied hearing a number of paint manufacturers’ appeals. The paint manufacturers, ConAgra, NL Industries, and Sherwin-Williams, were ordered in November by the Sixth District Court of Appeal in San Jose to pay a significant sum to the state to enable it to remove lead paint from older homes, where the paint still has the potential to cause people serious harm, particularly children. The manufacturers are responsible for homes built before 1951. The potential lead paint cleanup is intended for 10 cities and counties throughout the state, and is estimated to cost $400 million.

The ruling stands for now, however the manufacturers have been fighting this suit since 2000 and are not finished. They have indicated that they may appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court. They also intend to place an initiative on the California ballot, known as the Healthy Homes and Schools Act. If passed, taxpayers would carry the burden for the $2 billion bond ultimately used to fund the lead paint cleanup.

The Threat of Lead Paint

daniel-monteiro-413416-copy-199x300In early February, an Alameda-Contra Costa (AC) Transit bus collided with a vehicle before striking a home in Berkeley. The bus, traveling west on Ashby Avenue, struck a red sedan driving south on California street. Both vehicles then careened into another parked vehicle and nearby home. The driver of the red sedan was killed in the crash. The bus driver and one passenger on the bus were not harmed. It is unclear what caused the accident and the Berkeley Police are investigating.

Why Bus Accidents Happen

Bus accidents are like any other type of car crash; they occur for many of the same reasons. One of the most common causes is bus driver error. Despite specific training, a bus driver can be careless or reckless behind the wheel, leading them to make dangerous mistakes. They could speed, tailgate, change lanes inappropriate, and make other reckless maneuvers. Drivers could be distracted by passengers on the bus, their cell phones, or a host of other things. Worse yet, a driver could work while impaired due to drugs or alcohol.

cristian-newman-63291-199x300Another wrongful death lawsuit has been brought against Brius Healthcare Services for the negligent care provided at its Granada Rehabilitation & Wellness Center. The suit alleges that an elderly patient, Jeanette Sharp, died after the staff at Granada allowed a significant amount of fecal matter to build up in her colon. According to reports, physicians removed up to four liters of fecal matter, some of which was spilling into the patient’s abdominal cavity and had reach the exit of Sharp’s stomach. By the time the patient received surgical intervention on April 4, 2017, the situation was dire. Sharp passed away the same day of the procedure.

Granada Staff Allegedly Provided Negligent Care

The lawsuit filed against Brius Healthcare Services states that the staff at Granada failed to monitor Sharp’s bowel movements. Sharp had dementia and was likely unable to self-monitor. Over an extended period of time without bowel movements, the fecal matter accumulated and filled Sharp’s digestive system.