Many drivers have witnessed the results of serious 18 wheeler accidents while driving on the highway. Injuries are common in trucking collisions, and victims often require the services of a truck accident attorney. The U.S. Department of Transportation has compiled truck accident statistics that can help motorists understand these dangerous accidents and the risks involved. Any traffic accident involving a trailer with a weight of 10,000 pounds or more is considered a trucking accident. There are approximately 500,000 trucking accidents in the United States annually. About 5,000 of these accidents result in at least one fatality. Despite the increasing number of trucks on the road, the number of deaths has stayed roughly the same for many years. More than two-thirds of these fatal accidents occur in rural areas. Large trucks are much more dangerous to motorists than other vehicles. In 98 percent of lethal trucking accidents, it is the person in the passenger vehicle who is killed. One in eight deadly traffic accidents involves a truck collision. State statistics suggest that truck drivers cause many of these accidents. In Oregon, 621 of the trucking accidents in 2004 were caused by a faulty truck while another 596 were the fault of the driver. 545 people were injured in these accidents. Driving under the influence of alcohol is one of the major causes of lethal trucking accidents. The aftermath of a collision with a large truck can be difficult. Those injured in one of these accidents should contact a qualified 18 wheeler accident attorney. 18 wheeler accident lawyers have specialized knowledge that can benefit anyone involved in these situations.
Scurvy, pestilence and death: such calamities marred many an early shipboard experience. Before the 20th century, conditions for working and living on board a vessel were less than optimal, and seamen who toiled in substandard settings had no legal protection. The 1920 passage of the Jones Act changed all that. The regulations it imposed on the shipping of passengers and goods between coastal ports on U.S. waters offered some recourse. Today, qualified seamen who feel they have just cause, have the right to hire a Jones Act attorney or offshore injury lawyer and sue the ship's owner, captain or any crew member for negligence. Under some conditions, the act also provides recourse for workers who are harmed or killed by unsafe conditions on a movable oil rig, barge or drill ship. The key word here is "movable." Exceptions abound, and crew members in need of advice should consult an oil rig accident attorney to learn of their rights in such cases. To qualify for protection under the Jones Act, a seaman must spend a full 30 percent of their time on a vessel at sea. In addition to protecting mariners, the Jones Act requires that any ship used in U.S. coastal shipping be:
Both employers and employees should be well informed about the Federal Employers Liability Act (FELA) in order to understand rights and responsibilities related to the act. Learning about the history of FELA can help workers who are injured on the job understand why they are afforded certain rights and how to proceed following an accident in order to collect needed compensation. The Beginning of FELA The initial adoption of FELA was a response to the dangerous work environment that railroad workers were exposed to when the U.S. expanded westward in the late 19th century. Although the rate of accidents on the railroad has decreased as expansion has ended and technology has afforded workers more on-the-job safety, working on the railroad can still be considered one of the most dangerous jobs in the U.S. The dangers of working on the railroad were first formally brought to the attention of the House of Representatives in 1889 when President Benjamin Harrison cited injuries and deaths to display the need for such an act. It was 17 years before FELA was adopted. There have been several attempts to revise or remove FELA since it was enacted. An amendment was added to the act in 1939 to protect employees who report injuries and require that comparative negligence be proven in order for an employee to collect compensation under FELA. What Does FELA Do? FELA allows the injured worker to collect compensation if their employer acted negligently in a way that contributed to their injuries. Because railroad workers face danger every day, it may be possible that injuries not resulting from negligence will fall under worker's compensation instead of FELA. Employers of railroad workers may be held liable if an injury resulting from an accident is suffered by an employee, and there are other instances in which these employers are liable years after an employee has left the company. Long term illnesses that can be tied to exposure to toxic materials used in railroading can allow a current or former employee to pursue compensation for ongoing medical expenses and inability to work. Hiring a FELA Attorney FELA attorneys have the knowledge needed to handle accidents related to the dangers of railroad jobs. While there are many personal injury attorneys to choose from, a train accident attorney has the specialized training needed to understand FELA and how it applies to the situation at hand. FELA is intended to protect railroad employees in case of an accident on the job. Anyone affected by an injury or illness related to working on the railroad should contact an experienced attorney for assistance.
Prescription drug lawsuits are often prevalent in the media, but many victims are unaware of their rights when they have suffered from medical complications related to side effects of drugs or malfunctions of medical equipment. Medical device manufacturers may be liable when defective devices cause injury. What is Medical Products Liability? Manufacturers of medical devices are responsible for ensuring that equipment is safe for patients to use. If a defect causes harm to a patient, the manufacturer may be liable for the injuries sustained by the patient because of negligence in the manufacturing process. There are three types of defects that could make medical device manufacturers liable for injuries caused by defective equipment.
Experiencing property damage following extreme weather conditions can be devastating. Homeowners who are properly insured against such damage often run into problems when they attempt to collect on an insurance claim that is denied by their insurer.
Considering the weight of a train and how fast it travels, it does not take much for a train wreck to cause massive destruction. Therefore, it is of the utmost importance that all safety guidelines are followed at all times. Putting it simply, there is no margin for error. Yet, in 2012, a failure to adhere to safety precautions or failed safety mechanisms contributed to three railroad accidents. In February, a woman was killed when her vehicle smashed into an Amtrak train. The gate arms were up, and the warning lights were not working at the time of the crash. In June, one train missed three warning signals prior to a fatal collision with an oncoming train. In October, an Amtrak train got on the wrong track, injuring 14 people. It is frustrating to think that all three of these accidents were easily preventable. Instead, you have families grieving and trying to make sense of it all. While they can and should hire an experienced railroad accident attorney to try and get fair monetary compensation for their suffering, that does very little to ease their pain. Winning a claim against the railroad company will not bring a loved one back, nor will it eliminate any injuries suffered in the crash.
Due to reports they may cause pancreatic cancer, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has launched an investigation into two popular type-2 diabetes medications, Januvia and Byetta. The investigation also will examine the safety of Bydureon, a longer-lasting form of Byetta that is injected into patients once a week. This is not the first time Byetta has faced scrutiny. It was approved for use by the FDA in 2005. However, by 2007, alerts were issued that warned of a link between the drug and pancreatitis. Then in 2008, it faced lawsuits over improper labeling and safety warnings. Years have since passed, and not only is the drug still readily available on the market, it is commonly prescribed to patients. That much is evident when you learn that the drug grossed $490 million last year. While it is good that the FDA is finally taking the initiative to investigate the matter, it took numerous patients reaching out to class action lawsuit lawyers to prompt them to do so. It should never have come to that. When a prescription drug is linked to pancreatitis and faces lawsuits over shady labeling practices within the span of a year, the drug should be immediately pulled from the market. It is that simple.
Two 18 wheelers collided yesterday in Tyler, Texas. According to the FOX affiliate in the city, one of the big rigs was trying to feed onto eastbound Interstate 20 from the shoulder when a second 18 wheeler hit them from behind. Because of the accident, traffic was slowed for nearly two hours. All that said, there is good news. For one thing, no major injuries were reported. Considering the two vehicles weighed at least 20,000 pounds in gross weight combined, that is no small feat. When two large vehicles slam into each other like they did, one or both could have easily toppled over, increasing the odds of serious injury. Thankfully, that did not happen in this case. Secondly, no chemicals were spilled on the interstate as a result of this collision. Since 18 wheelers are generally used to transport goods or products within or across state lines, it is not uncommon for them to be carrying dangerous chemicals as part of their load. Also, due to their large mass, they are not the most stable vehicles, either. This is why some 18 wheeler accidents result in chemical spills. In fact, one such accident occurred in Houston last December. Because of these facts, it appears neither party involved in the accident will need the services of a truck accident lawyer in Texas. However, in the future, if an attorney is needed after an 18 wheeler accident in Tyler, it would be best to contact a Dallas area truck accident lawyer. That only makes sense considering the cities are within 100 miles of each other.
The US has been battered with hailstorms and extreme weather patterns over the last few weeks. Winter storms have dropped property damaging snowstorms and hailstorms across the midsection of the country as well as the eastern seaboards. Unusual weather patterns are wreaking havoc on the highways, causing automobile accidents, tractor-trailor accidents, tying up traffic for hours in the wet sticky, snowy mess. Personal property damage totals are being released on a daily basis. Just yesterday, hailstorms pounded the Mississippi, Georgia and Alabama region with Category 4 and 5 hailstorms reported in the cities of Atlanta, Macon, Jackson, Huntsville, Birmingham and Montgomery. Level 4 and 5 storms deliver a punch suggesting extreme and widespread damage in populated areas per WeatherFusion.com. Hailstorms of this magnitude can produce hailstones ranging in size from 2-4". Obviously, this size of "ice balls" falling from the sky can cause extreme property damage including vehicle and truck damage, roof damage, damage to siding and windows of your home. Should you notice damage caused by extreme weather, including hail or snow, contact your homeowners or car insurance company immediately. If you need any assistance negotiating claims with difficult insurance companies, contact Burwell Nebout Trial Lawyers. We know how to handle these companies and how to get the insurance company to work for you.
Stricter drug testing is on the way for railroad conductors. According to "Conductors to be Tested For Over-The-Counter Drugs After Rail Accidents," the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) intends to test any railroad conductor for non-controlled substances following train wrecks. As experienced FELA attorneys, we think this is great. Many over-the-counter medications can produce harmful side-effects. When you work as a train conductor, you need to have full control of your faculties at all times. You are operating a fast-moving, large vehicle and one false move can produce devastating consequences. Consequences that may include the taking of innocent lives, even your own. Therefore, unless prescribed by a doctor to treat a specific medical condition, it makes sense the FRA wants to eliminate the use of these medications. That point is driven home when you look at this quote from the above article:
Accidents at chemical plants tend to be rare occurrences. Therefore, when two similar events occur in nearby cities within days of each other, it becomes noteworthy. That happened in Southeast Texas over the past week. Last Thursday, February 28, the Marathon Galveston Bay refinery in Texas City caught on fire. Then, on Monday, March 4, Akzo Nobel's polymer chemicals plant in Deer Park suffered an explosion and subsequent fire. As of today, the causes of both incidents are still under investigation. While industrial accidents are never good, there is a silver lining in both of these cases. In the Marathon Galveston Bay refinery fire, nobody was injured. In Akzo Nobel's chemical plant explosion, only one worker was injured. Both companies should consider themselves lucky in that regard. It could have been much worse. However, these close calls should serve as a lesson to both of these businesses. It is time to show a commitment to the safety of their employees. That means looking into company safety policy and instituting stricter enforcement of company safety regulations at all of their facilities. If not, shame on them. Even the smallest industrial explosions can have deadly consequences, so it is better to be safe than sorry.
Last June, two Union Pacific trains collided in the Oklahoma Panhandle, killing three of the four railroad workers aboard the two locomotives. That left three families asking questions and searching for answers. Last week, some answers about the fatal train wreck were finally discovered. According to the National Transportation Safety Board, the Union Pacific train heading eastbound missed three signals telling it to slow down or stop. It was also determined that both trains passed safety inspections the day before and that the railway signals were working correctly afterward. While we understand railroad conductors are human and mistakes happen, this is unacceptable. One missed signal is bad. Three missed signals is inexcusable. However, what really bothers us is Union Pacific's stance towards employees that miss or ignore warning signs. In the hearing that led to the NTSB's announcement last week, Robert Grimaila, Union Pacific's vice president of safety, stated that employees can be suspended or face other consequences for ignoring or missing warning signals. Maybe it is just us, but that policy does not seem tough enough. It is also far too vague. If we had our way, a railroad conductor that misses any warning signal would never be in a position to operate a train again. Railroad work injuries are just too devastating to give that conductor a second chance.