Common Causes of Bicycle Injuries

Common Causes of Bicycle Injuries

Whether it’s for improved health, to save money or help the environment, bicycling riding has a number of advantages. Unfortunately, one of the disadvantages it comes with is an increased risk of being seriously hurt if involved in an accident. Riders and drivers everywhere need to keep safety in mind in order to decrease the odds of someone being injured.

Intersection Accidents

Cyclists need to be especially careful when approaching intersections, as this is where the majority of bicycle accidents occur. Riders can be struck whenever another driver:

  • Attempts to run a red light or stop sign
  • Turns directly in front of a cyclist
  • Strikes the bicycle rider
  • Pushes the cyclist off the road

Other Types of Bicycle Accidents

Aside from injuries at intersections, the next most common cause of bicycle accidents involves visibility. Drivers may have trouble seeing a bicycle rider until it is too late, particularly when it is raining, foggy or dark outside. Riders should use extra caution when riding under these hazardous conditions, and may want to consider placing lights on their bicycles or helmets to aid with visibility.

Drivers may also collide with bicycles when:

  • Driving too fast for conditions
  • Operating while under the influence of alcohol or drugs
  • Texting or otherwise becoming distracted
  • Passing on a blind curve or hill

When bicycles and cars collide, the results could be potentially dangerous. This is especially true whenever a bicycle rider has been run over, or a hit and run occurs, leaving the individual without any way to seek medical treatment for his or her injuries. Even seemingly minor accidents can result in broken bones, head injuries or severe scraping of the skin that would require multiple surgeries to correct.

Rights under the Law

Texas law aims to protect bicycle riders from negligent drivers by allowing them the right-of-way at intersections and on roadways. Even so, many drivers fail to acknowledge this, treating them more as a nuisance than equals. This mindset spills over into insurance companies as well, as many of them will attempt to find fault with the cyclist in order to prevent paying out a claim for damages.

Hiring an Attorney

Cyclists who are injured in an accident need to assert their rights as quickly as possible in order to avoid being taken advantage of. In many cases, hiring a personal injury attorney is the best way of doing this, as it shows the driver and insurance company that the victim is serious about recovering damages. Schedule a free case evaluation today by calling 713.766.5400.

*Image courtesy of freedigitalphotos.net
child injury guide

Attorney Selection 101 How to Pick Your Personal Injury Lawyer

Attorney Selection 101: How to Pick Your Personal Injury Lawyer

Those who are both injured and undertaking legal action often hesitate when it comes to selecting the attorney that will represent them. This hesitation often arises because people know it is this one professional that can make the difference between a favorable verdict and one that leaves them more indebted than when the case began. While it’s almost impossible to fully assess an attorney before a case begins, there are a number of ways people can determine which attorney is best suited to represent them.

Communication Is Key

Injury cases are different from other legal actions in that the victim is often in need of a favorable verdict so they can maintain their lifestyle and pay their medical bills. This almost immediate necessity means that individuals like this often appreciate an attorney that contacts them regularly and lets them know how the case is proceeding. Ways to assess the value an attorney places on communication is to:

  • Call outside normal business hours, leave a message, and then see if the attorney or their representative promptly return the call the next day.
  • Submit documents about the case and see how long it takes before they’re reviewed.

Interpersonal Skills

An injured person may also desire an attorney that is able to be sympathetic to their condition and relay information about the case in an easily understandable manner. Just as with all people, attorneys are individuals and this means their attitudes and communication styles will vary considerably. The two most common approaches include:

  • Direct – This type of attorney likely won’t mince words and offer platitudes, but instead will focus on the facts of the case and making sure the victim wins.
  • Sympathetic – This type of attorney is equally as skilled as the first, but will generally take more time during appointments and try to relate to the clients troubles.

Skills and Experience

There are also individuals that care little about how the attorney is personally and put more emphasis on their record in the courtroom. Deciding what level of experience is preferred is solely up to the client, and there are two methods of reasoning that individuals often choose from.

  • New Lawyers – Those who select an attorney with this experience level often do so because they want to ensure their attorney is filled with enthusiasm and will tackle their case head-on.
  • Experienced Lawyers – This is often the choice people make when the stakes are too high to trust to an new and unknown attorney. Most injury victims make this choice because they know their case will be oversaw by years of legal experience.

Comfort Level

The most important aspect of selecting an injury attorney is for the victim to select someone they’re truly comfortable with. This not only makes meetings far more enjoyable, but often helps the client withstand the stresses that a court case can create.

Selecting Your Lawyer

Before selecting your lawyer, you should meet up with them one-on-one to make sure they represent a good match. Also it’s important to have your new attorney review your case to see if you should even go to court. Schedule your free case evaluation today by calling 713-222-1222.

*Image courtesy of freedigitalphotos.net
child injury guide

Child Injury Get Medical Help & Document Injuries

Child Injury: Document Everything If Your Child Is Harmed

Children are at greater risk of injury because of their inability to identify potentially dangerous events or products as easily as adults. When children do suffer an injury this often leaves parents in shock and unable to decide which course of action will be of help to their child. The first thing parents should do is get their child the medical attention they need, and this should be followed by the gathering of documentation and an investigation as to what caused the accident.

Medical Records

Gathering documentation is of the utmost importance during any case involving injury, and this process starts as soon as the child is seen by medical professionals. Whether a child is seen in an emergency room or by their primary physician, parents should request copies of all medical documents relating to the injury. Important documents may include:

  • Notes by the physician
  • X-rays
  • Results from blood tests

While obtaining all these medical records may not be possible, the most important thing for parents to get a copy of is the treatment report that is created by the physician. This document not only details the injury, but also recommends treatments based on their examination, and this allows those examining the case to get a clear idea as to the extent of the injury.

Photographic Evidence

Taking photographs of the child and their injuries should also be of the utmost importance to parents. These pictures will create a visual reference point for those investigating the case and allow them to see the injury before it has time to heal. Some rules for taking photographs of injuries include:

  • Take pictures of both the entire child and the injury by itself. This ensures the injury can be matched with the face of the child who suffers because of it.
  • All photos should be labeled with the date and time in which they were taken.
  • Photos should be taken as the injury progresses in either healing or becoming worse.

Record of Thoughts and Observations

The injured child should also be asked on a regular basis about the state of their injury and whether any changes are taking place. These thoughts and feelings can be recorded in a journal and are useful in proving claims of mental anguish. Parents can also record any changes they observe in their child or detail any difficulties or behavioral differences they notice that are due to the injury.

Child Injury Attorney

Gathering proper documentation will help you win your case, but the most important component you can have is an attorney. A child injury lawyer can help you navigate the complicated legal system and come up with an effective defense strategy. Call 713.766.5400 today to get a free case evaluation.

*Image courtesy of freedigitalphotos.net
child injury guide

How to Mourn the Loss of Your Child

How to Mourn for the Loss of a Child

The most devastating event any parent can face is losing their child. Parents who are dealing with this type of tragedy are often bombarded with a range of emotions and left feeling physically and mentally drained for years. The negativity that begins to become commonplace in their life often results because they, like most individuals, don’t know how to mourn their child after they are gone. While nothing can ever replace a child that has passed away before their time, there are ways parents can make this time a little easier and move more quickly towards peace.

Seek Outside Support

A vital piece of information for grieving persons to know is that it is common for individuals to be unable to handle the burden of this tragedy on their own. Individuals should build up a support network around themselves of other people who have either gone through the same loss or can adequately sympathize. Some ideas for where to look for support include:

  • Family – These individuals often understand the loss all too well since it is their loved one as well that has passed away.
  • Support Groups – There are a large number of organizations that make it their sole mission to help those who have lost a child. Many of these organizations also host support groups where grieving parents can share their story and connect with others who have gone through the same loss.

Recognize Reality

There is an inherent wrongness that is apparent when a child passes away, and this is something parents should acknowledge. The harsh reality is that a child has passed away, and there was nothing the parent could do to stop it. Admitting there is sometimes nothing that can be done to prevent death can often help those in mourning realize their child’s death was a tragedy that couldn’t be prevented and that they shouldn’t judge themselves based on this.

Don’t Resist Natural Emotions

The most important part of the mourning process is to simply let it go on naturally. It is often tempting for parents to try and bury these emotions in an effort to appear as though they’re adjusted, but this often results in extreme feelings of sadness and a mourning process that never reaches a true end. Being aware of what the mourning process entails can also help, and this process includes:

  • Emotions such as sadness, anger, resentment, and a desire to have passed away along with the child
  • Feelings of extreme fatigue or insomnia resulting from the stress caused by this tragedy
  • Spiritual beliefs being either lost or reaffirmed during mourning

Hopelessness is also common, and those who feel this belief is becoming overpowering should seek out assistance from a mental health professional.

Getting Justice

The loss of a child is very difficult for most parents to overcome. Often times, parent can mourn for years with little or no comfort. Parents who are in mourning should seek the love and support of their peers. Another effective coping method is to seek legal action against the guilty party. If you are in this position, then you should consider hiring an attorney to overcome your injustice. Get a free case evaluation today by calling 713.766.5400.

*Image courtesy of freedigitalphotos.net
child injury guide

Child Injury How a Fun Toy Can Become Defective

Child Injury: How a Fun Toy Can Become Defective

Every year millions of parents and family members go to toy stores in an attempt to find the perfect gift for a special child in their life. Nothing takes away from this joy as much as when a person finds out the gift they gave the child ended up injuring them. There are numerous ways toys can be dangerous, but a few stand out among the rest.

Defective Toys

Toys considered defective are often the primary source of injuries that occur. There are two types of defective products that parents are likely to face.

Defective Design – Toys such as this can often be considered defective long before they’re ever shipped from the manufacturer, and this is generally because there is some design flaw that makes the toy unsafe.

Defective Parts – Toys in this category will often appear safe on the surface, but as time goes on the risk of an accident occurring tends to increase as parts become loose or design flaws become apparent.

Common Aspects of Dangerous Toys

Small Parts – Toys with small parts are the leading cause of injury to children since these quickly become a choking hazard.

Unsafe Materials – Toys such as an aquarium or underwater aquarium are often considered to be unsafe because of the substances they contain. A novelty aquarium will often contain a liquid that is meant to enhance the underwater aquarium look, but this same substance is often dangerous if ingested.

Removing these items from the home is often the first concern of parents who have a child that has an accident or suffers an injury due to a defective toy. Parents should also consider legal action as a means to ensure these products are kept out of the reach of other children who could potentially be harmed.

Getting an Attorney

If your child has been hurt by a defective toy, then you may have some large medical bills that need to be paid. The best way to cover these mounting medical bills is to hire a personal injury attorney. Schedule your free case evaluation today by calling 713-222-1222

*Image courtesy of freedigitalphotos.net

child injury guide

Bouncy Houses What to Do If Your Child Was Injured

Bouncy Houses: What to Do If Your Child Was Injured

When children see an inflatable bounce house, also called moon bounce, space walk, moonwalk, and jump houses, they often form long lines and are willing to wait for hours just to get a few minutes of enjoyment from this device. This enjoyment often goes uninterrupted, but there are instances where children are injured, and this is when parents should act quickly to ensure they receive compensation for their child’s injuries.

Bounce Castle Documenting Events

A person’s memory is something that can be useful for storing away large facts, but it’s often also something that can’t be trusted as time passes and the details of an event are forgotten or become obscured. Some of the most important information that should be written down includes:

  • The exact location of the injury
  • Notable observations that were made before or after the injury took place
  • Individuals present when the injury occurred
  • Conditions such as weather
  • Time of day

Children should also be involved during this process because their responses to questions can be vital when it comes to proving a case. Questions should involve what the child was doing right before the accident and whether there were any obvious or potential causes.

Bounce House Persistent Vigilance

Documenting an injury doesn’t end after medical attention has been sought, because there are often instances where an injury only appears or becomes worse days after it is sustained. The injuries that can be sustained in an inflatable bounce house are numerous, and documentation about the injury should include:

  • Any injuries, no matter how minor, to the head and neck
  • Any visible signs of injury such as favoring one leg or hand over the other
  • The appearance of bruises or other discoloration on any part of the body
  • Changes in behavior or mood not common before the injuring event

Becoming Familiar with the Law

Many states have laws in place to protect individuals from the negligence of inflatable bounce house operators. There are two primary aspects to these types of laws, and they include:

  • Product Negligence – Bounce house operators have a responsibility to ensure that the product they’re allowing the public to use is safe and won’t put them in unnecessary danger. When an operator fails to meet this obligation they can often be sued and injured persons can receive compensation.
  • Proper Reporting – When a child is injured in a bounce house the operator also has to report this event to state investigators so an inquiry can begin immediately. If the operator fails to do this it often indicates an attempt to hide information vital to the investigation and makes negligence apparent.

Hire an Attorney

Your lawyer is one of the most important factors in determining if you will win your case or not. It’s important to hire an attorney who specializes in child related injuries so he will be knowledgeable in the best defense strategies. Schedule your free case evaluation today by calling 713.766.5400.

*Image courtesy of freedigitalphotos.net
child injury guide

Shaken Baby Syndrome Know the Facts

Shaken Baby Syndrome: Know the Facts

The hectic pace of life often forces parents to entrust their children to others so they can pursue career or educational goals in an attempt to make a better life for their family. Although many caretakers provide nothing but the most attentive and nurturing care, there are some that betray this trust and cause harm to children, and no injury often causes more long-term harm than shaken baby syndrome. Parents who fear their child might have been subjected to this can search for a few signs often associated with this type of injury.

Signs & Symptoms of SBS

Parents often suspect shaken baby syndrome when the behavior of their child changes in a noticeable and drastic manner. Some of the most readily noticeable symptoms include:

  • Loss of facial expressions such as smiling
  • Loss of appetite or difficulty chewing or swallowing food
  • Excessive fatigue that makes staying awake noticeably difficult
  • Respiratory problems such as shallow or intermittent breathing
  • Physical changes such as being excessively stiff or limp

Long-Term Effects of Shaken Baby Syndrome

Although shaken baby syndrome can be the result of a momentary lapse in control on the part of a parent or caretaker, the long-term effects can impair a child for the rest of their life. Many cases result in long-term injuries such as:

  • Loss of the ability to hear or see
  • Developmental problems such as learning disabilities and behavioral issues
  • Neurological issues such as brain damage, seizures, and paralysis

Approximately 25% of children that suffer from shaken baby syndrome die every year as a result of their injuries, and of those that do survive, 80% will suffer from at least one of the effects listed above for the rest of their life.

The Prevalence of Shaken Baby Syndrome

Research that appeared in the Journal of the American Medical Association showed that on average 1,300 children suffer from symptoms linked to shaken baby syndrome. This number is likely low since many parents don’t realize that a baby that is shaken for even a few seconds may have been injured.

Know the Facts

The best way for parents and caretakers to understand SBS is to prepare themselves with knowledge of what to expect when caring for a child becomes a part of their everyday lives. Expectations should include:

  • Crying – Parents and caretakers should know that babies may cry for 3 hours or more every day, and that putting a child in a place like a bassinet and stepping out of the room is beneficial to reducing stress levels.
  • Symptoms – Parents should inform themselves about the symptoms of shaken baby syndrome. This way they can take legal action if necessary.

Hiring A SBS Attorney

SBS is one of the most difficult things a parent will need to face. Their child’s health and well-being are on the line. The best way to correct the situation is to seek justice. Learn more about your case by scheduling a free case review. Just call 713.766.5400.

*Image courtesy of freedigitalphotos.net

child injury guide

6 Largest Auto Recalls in U.S. History

15 Million Ford Vehicles Could Burst into Flames

Buying a new vehicle is a time of excitement for most people, but this enthusiasm quickly fades when owners learn their new vehicle is due for maintenance because of a recall. Automotive recalls often range from benign cosmetic defects to serious dangers that put drivers and everyone around them at risk. Throughout automotive history there have been a series of recalls that have affected millions of drivers, but only a few can be considered the largest automotive recalls of all time.

21 Million Vehicles

This recall was initiated by Ford between 1970 and 1980 and involved 21 million of their vehicles. The recall was one considered serious because it resulted in the drivers being unable to place their vehicle in park.

15 Million Vehicles

This recall is another one that can be claimed by Ford and took place between 1992 and 2003. It was reported that 15 million of Ford’s vehicles had to be recalled because the cruise control ignition would burst into flames without reason or warning. This recall not only affected the cruise control system of the vehicle because the fire could spread and affect other vital systems such as the anti-lock brakes.

7.9 Million Vehicles

Fire once again plagued Ford model vehicles in the years between 1988 and 1993 when ignition switches would produce flames for no apparent reason. The cause was eventually determined to be faulty electrical systems, and Ford took steps to replace the ignition switches they installed in their vehicles.

6.9 Million Vehicles

Ford finally receives a break, as Chevrolet was faced with a 6.9 million vehicle recall between 1965 and 1970. This recall was caused by motor mounts that would break and cause the vehicle to accelerate without any input from the driver. The solution for Chevrolet wasn’t to replace the motor mounts though, but to install a cable that stopped the engine from moving if the motor mount did break.

5.8 Million Vehicles

General Motors also has its share of recalls, such as the one involving 5.8 million vehicles taking place between 1978 and 1981. The lower control arm bolt is essential to the suspension of a vehicle and when it fails, as it did to cause this recall, the entire suspension has the potential to collapse.

5.4 Million Vehicles

One of the more recent recalls has been by Toyota, when between 2004 and 2010 they recalled 5.4 million vehicles due to an issue where the floor mats of their vehicles caused an increase in acceleration that was difficult to correct. This resulted in two recalls in which Toyota corrected the floor mat issue and replaced the accelerator in an effort to ensure the issue was corrected.

Get a Lawyer Today

It’s very difficult to fight large automotive companies without a skilled attorney on your side. Schedule your free case evaluation to see if you have a case. Just call 713.766.5400 today.

*Image courtesy of freedigitalphotos.net

child injury guide

6 Children Died in Recalled Nap Nanny Chair

6 Children Died in Recalled Nap Nanny Chair

A Hopatcong, New Jersey girl is the sixth baby to die because of a Nap Nanny infant recliner that was recalled a few months ago. The details of the death are not available, but the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) said that the 8-month-old infant was found secured by a seatbelt and partly hanging over the side of the recliner. Her head was trapped between the Nap Nanny and the crib bumper.

The Nap Nanny is a portable infant recliner designed for sleeping, resting, and playing. It mimics the curves of a baby car seat, which help to reduce reflux, gas, stuffiness, or other problems. However, it has design flaws that make it dangerous to infants. In December, 155,000 units were recalled because of this risk of injury. It is illegal to sell these products, but they are still popular in garage sales and as hand-me-downs. If your or someone you know has any of these products, the CPSC urges you to stop using them.

6 Children Died in Recalled Nap Nanny Chair 2If your child has been injured by the Nap Nanny or any other dangerous products, you need an attorney who will fight for your rights. Contact Mukerji Law Firm for a free case evaluation today.

For more information about this recall, visit cpsc.gov, and for more information on the 8-month old girl, who died in Ney Jersey, visit njherald.com.

Images courtesy of njherald.com and cpsc.gov

child injury guide