Southern California Roller Coaster Accidents at Amusement Parks

We all love roller coasters. It is a fun way to spend the weekend with family and friends. Unfortunately, roller coasters and amusement parks have been the site of several tragic accidents that leave people severely injured, or worse. Therefore, it is important to follow safe riding practices while you are on a roller coaster.

But even the safest rider cannot prevent accidents that are beyond their control. We are experienced roller coaster accident attorney and can help you with your personal injury case. For more information about amusement park safety and how we can help,  call our office for a free consultation.

San Diego Bus Accident Lawyers

With the increased cost of gas, millions of people decide to ride the bus every day. It is a cheap and efficient way to get to and from work or school. Many people fail to realize that a bus can get into accidents on the road. People suffer from injuries they get from riding on a bus more often than you think.

We are experienced San Diego bus accident attorneys. We know the proper steps to ensure you get the compensation you need after your accident. For more information about bus accidents and how we can help, please call our office for a free consultation.

Pfizer Recalls 1 Million Birth Control Packs after Manufacturing Mix-Up

Drug Manufacturer Pfizer, Inc. issued a recall on February 1 of approximately 1 million birth control pills due to a manufacturing problem that led to pills in some of the packets being placed out of order. According to CBS News, the affected packets are Lo/Ovral-28 and the product’s generic equivalents, called norgestrel and ethinyl estradiol.

The company’s birth control packet contains 28 pills, with seven of the pills being placebos. The pills are ordered in a specific arrangement so as to mix in placebos with pills containing the active birth control ingredient. If three placebos are taken in a row, the protection of the pills will be negated. As the error in manufacturing the packets affected the order of the pills, consumers may be subjected to multiple placebos in a row, wearing off the birth control’s effects without their knowledge.

While approximately 1 million are included in the drug recall, Pfizer believes that only around 30 packets contain the flaw.

Affected packets are pink with either the drug’s brand name or generic name printed on them, as well as the name Akrimax; however, Pfizer’s logo does not appear on them. The recalled line has expiration dates ranging from July 31, 2013 through March 31, 2014.

We understand how even a small defect in a product that requires precise use, such as birth control, can cause major complications for consumers. If you or a loved one has suffered injuries or losses due to a dangerous or defective product, one of our San Diego defective product attorneys can aid you in seeking compensation from the at-fault company. Call us today for a complimentary consultation on your case by our experienced law team.

US Government Recalls Childrens’ Playsets Used in San Diego

The US Consumer Product Safety Commission and Playland International of Carrollton, Georgia, announced a voluntary recall of Arch Swing Sets commonly used in San Diego County playgrounds.

The reason for the recall is that the metal around the welds on the top of the set frame can fail and cause the top bar to fall injuring children and bystanders.

The Arch Swing Sets were sold between September 2001 through May 2006 and are constructed of 3.5 inch metal frames that come in a variety of colors. Illustrative pictures are here:

If you are concerned that you, a neighbor, or a public park are using the Arch Swing Set after the recall, please let them know about it right away. If you want any more information or you have been injured by a defective Arch Swing Set, please contact the experienced defective product attorneys.

Santee Roadway Sign Encourages Drivers Not to Drink and Drive

A new sign reading “Please Don’t Drink and Drive” greets drivers on state Route 125 in Santee, the legacy of a fatal drunk driving crash in 2009 that claimed one life and sent another driver to the hospital with serious injuries. The sign was paid for by the deceased driver’s family, who wanted a way to warn other drivers against causing these preventable car crashes and to remember their loved one.

The sign honors the victim of the 2009 crash, who lost her life when an intoxicated teen driver crashed into her vehicle. The teenager survived the accident, but suffered brain damage including memory loss and blindness in one eye. Now at the age of 21, the driver has joined the fight to eliminate drunk driving and encourage others to drive safe and sober.

Driving under the influence of alcohol or other drugs (DUI) in San Diego can carry both criminal penalties and civil ones. The families of a motorist, pedestrian, or other person killed in a drunk driving crash may be able to seek compensation in the form of a car accident wrongful death claim against the impaired driver who caused the crash. While financial compensation can’t restore a lost loved one to life, it can make planning for the future easier for those left behind.

If someone you love has lost their life in a drunk driving or other car accident, please don’t hesitate to contact our experienced car accident wrongful death attorneys in San Diego to learn more about your legal rights and options. Call us today for a free and confidential case evaluation.

Contingency Fees Preferred by Clients, Study Finds

The Manhattan Institute is a conservative think tank that pushes a tort-reform agenda as it attacks plaintiffs’ attorneys for numerous evils, both real and perceived. One of the primary gripes tort-reformers have against plaintiffs’ attorneys is that the contingency fee agreements used so prevalently in litigation–a legal fee agreement where the client pays a percentage of any recovery to the attorney for his services–unjustly exploit clients who cannot afford hourly attorneys’ fees and thereby unjustly enrich attorneys at their expense.

So, it’s ironic that The Manhattan Institute’s PointofLaw website recently published a story describing the findings of a legal fees study performed by Israeli behavioral economists Eyal Zamir and Ilana Ritov. The study, titled, “Neither Saints nor Devils: A Behavioral Analysis of Attorneys’ Contingent Fees” found that–contrary to the beliefs of tort-reformers–the vast majority of litigation clients prefer contingency fee agreements to the traditional billable hour fee agreement.

The study reaches a number of conclusions, but the key conclusion is that clients are risk-averse. They prefer a fee arrangement where the attorney shares the risk of litigation with them, even if that means the client ends up paying more in attorneys fees for that service. The attractiveness of the contingency fee agreement is that if the client wins, he will recover monetary damages, and, if he does not win, he does not owe any money in attorneys fees (“heads I win, tails let’s call it even).

Think about the utility and value of the contingency fee agreement the next time you hear some tort-reform argument, or, worse yet, a tort-reform initiative seeking to ban the contingency fee agreement.

Judge to Review Verdict in San Juan Capistrano Bicycle Accident

This Friday, a judge will review a $8.3 million verdict against the City of San Juan Capistrano awarded to a 14-year-old boy, Trenten Miller, who lost his leg during a bicycle accident.

The judgment was to be finalized last month. However, San Juan Capistrano decided to file an objection to the jury findings and overturn the verdict. Superior Court Judge Thierry Colaw set a hearing to hear the City of San Juan Capistrano’s motion this Friday.

In December, an Orange County jury found that the City of San Juan Capistrano liable to Miller because the City created a dangerous condition at an intersection. Miller was the passenger on his friend Scott Agostini’s dirt bike. Overgrown vegetation in the median of the intersection made it difficult for Miller and Agostini to see oncoming traffic as they attempted to cross the intersection of San Juan Creek Road and Paseo Christina.

The jury ruled in favor of the bicyclists, ruling the City of San Juan Capistrano to pay Miller $7.1 million and $1.1 million to Agostini. The verdict was reached three years after the bicycle accident and after Miller unsuccessfully attempted to settle the suit in mediation. Prior to the jury’s verdict, the City of San Juan Capistrano’s only offer was $1 million, which Miller rejected.

California Medical Board Allows Doctor to Keep License After Aiding Illegal Abortions

The California Medical Board permitted a doctor to keep his license after committing medical malpractice by aiding an unlicensed doctor perform illegal abortions. Dr. Mohammad Bararsani, who runs a cash-only abortion business at his Women’s Care Center on Crenshaw Boulevard in Torrance, California, was also charged with seven other cases of negligence and incompetence. Associates of Dr. Barasani have committed medical malpractice by performing abortions in San Diego without a medical license.

The charges against Dr. Bararsani arise from his actions to help Edgar Ruiz perform illegal abortions.

This is not the first time Dr. Barasani has worked with people performing illegal abortions. Bararsani, a 1964 graduate of Tehran University School of Medicine, has worked with Edgar Ruiz, a doctor licensed in Nicaragua. He has also worked with Bertha Bugarin who is awaiting sentencing for posing as a doctor and performing illegal abortions in both Los Angeles and San Diego counties.

For whatever reason, the California Medical Board decided to allow Dr. Barasani to keep his medical license after performing some minor probation tasks. For his probation, he must complete an education course, a medical records class, and is prohibited from supervising physician’s assistants.

Although the topic of abortions is usually a lightning rod topic, it is important to remember that it is a medical procedure. It is also a medical procedure that presents risks of infertility, infection, and even death. Quite honestly, it is amazing that the California Medical Board did not do more to protect Californians—and San Diegans—from his practice of using unlicensed doctors to perform abortions on low-income women.

San Diego Consumers Have New Tool to Fight Car Title Fraud

The US Department of Justice launched an online database available to all government agencies and to consumers to help detect automobile title fraud, theft, and other crimes involving cars.

The new database, called The National Motor Vehicle Title Information System (NMVTIS, editor: Great acronym, guys!), launched on January 30, 2009 and is available to consumers through several fee-for-service websites. Consumers can use the system to verify and exchange title and brand data as well as look up vehicle histories, including odometer data.

The launch of NMVTIS occurred only after three public interest groups–Public Citizen, Consumers for Auto Reliability and Safety (CARS, editor: Much better acronym.), and Consumer Action, sued the federal government seeking an order from the Court to force the government to implement NMVTIS as Congress had instructed 16 years ago.

While the database is not complete right now–less than two-thirds of all cars are listed–it is a step in the right direction to help prevent consumer fraud.

If you experience fraud in the purchase of a car, or if you buy a new vehicle that does not work properly, call our lawyers to learn about your rights.

San Diego Trolley Accident Injures Two Passengers

Two light rail passengers were injured in a San Diego trolley accident as their trolley slammed into a postal vehicle at Park Boulevard and G Street in East Village in San Diego. This auto vs. train accident took place around 11:30 a.m. on February 3, 2010.

Though no one lost their life, two passengers, a 40-year old man who uses wheelchairs and a woman in her 40s, were taken to Scripps Mercy Hospital and Kaiser Hospital, respectively. The man was treated for major trauma and the woman sustained minor injuries. Police are still investigating the cause of the crash.

Trolley accidents in Downtown San Diego are not unknown. Light rail drivers are known to enter intersections on the tail end of the yellow light, thereby causing traffic snarls and blocking intersections.

San Diego Assault and Battery Takes Life of 22-Year Old Man

An argument over a taxicab resulted in the death of a 22-year old man named LaDonte Collins, on February 2, 2010, in the 7000 block of El Cajon Boulevard in San Diego. This unfortunate San Diego assault and battery took place in the early morning hours around 4:30 a.m. in the parking lot of the Ace Budget Motel.

The fatal assault appears to have been resulted from a quarrel between the victim and another man who both wanted to hire a taxi that had just arrived to pick up a fare outside the College Area motel. The quarrel heated up and ended with the other man, whose name was not immediately available, stabbing Collins and severely wounding him. Collins was taken to Sharp Memorial Hospital, where he was declared dead an hour later. The suspect was later turned over to the homicide detectives.

Incidents like these tend to leave us shocked and angry. How unjust and inhuman is it to take away a life in a fit of rage?! Our office wishes to convey our sincere prayers and condolences to the family and friends of LaDonte Collins in such difficult times.

San Diego Salmonella Food Poisoning Tied to Unlicensed Texas Plant

San Diego residents suffering from food poisoning due to salmonella in their peanut butter products appear to be the victim of a Texas processing plant that went unlicensed and uninspected for years.

The Plainview, Texas plant for Peanut Corporation of America was never inspected until it came under investigation by the FDA.
Inspectors have not found any trace of salmonella at the plant but have determined that the plant had been operating without a license and without inspection for years.

Unfortunately, this is a common occurrence. The company’s sister plant in Blakely, Georgia revealed roaches, mold, and numerous positive tests for salmonella.

We hope that federal and state health inspectors do their job now that this outbreak has spread nationwide and shut these plants and Peanut Corporation of America down. If you have been exposed to salmonella food poisoning, please immediately go see a doctor and receive urgent health care. Our office is available at any time after you’ve received health care. Please contact us and speak to a lawyer about your food poisoning injury.

Los Angeles Judge Rules Against Car Owners in Defective Seatbelt Lawsuit

On Thursday, a Los Angeles Superior Court Judge ruled that a seatbelt manufactured by Takata Corp. of Japan was safe and met federal safety standards. The ruling ended a lawsuit brought by car owners who had claimed that the TK-52 seatbelt–installed in approximately 4 million cars in California–was improperly tested and subject to its’ buckle opening during collisions.

Lawyers for the car owners vowed to appeal.

None of the car owners claimed that any of the seatbelts were actually defective. Nor did they claim that they had been injured by the seatbelts. The allegation was that the seatbelt would fail in the future.

Other class-action lawsuits against Takata had been previously dismissed in other lawsuits.

Fatal Vista Pedestrian Accident Suspect Turns Himself In

Providing fresh insight into the teen skateboarder killed by in a Vista hit and run car accident, a 92-year old man has turned himself into authorities saying that he might be the careless driver. A vigil was held in memory of 15-year old Lucas Giaconelli, who lost his life in when a car struck and killed him as he was skateboarding along Thobodo Road in Vista in North San Diego County.

It was during the vigil itself that the 92-year old suspect came forward asking why the vigil was taking place. The deputy with the San Diego Sheriff’s Department explained about the Vista pedestrian accident. When the deputy was finished, the man said he had been driving on the street around the time of the accident and thought he had hit a small animal. The man’s car was then examined and the damage was found to be consistent with the fatal auto accident.

It has to be said that, though we are all concerned with the way young people drive, though also has to be given to the danger posed by senior citizens driving when they perhaps should not. Clearly, due to their age, they can sometimes cause serious threats to fellow drivers and pedestrians. In some cases, such as in this accident, their carelessness and inability to react quickly can even cause death.

California Supreme Court Rules San Diego Consumers Cannot Bring “Preemptive” Lawsuits

Last week the California Supreme Court ruled that California consumers cannot bring “preemptive” lawsuits–lawsuits that are brought to stop an injury before the injury actually occurs–for violation of state consumer law.

The Court ruled that only people who have suffered an actual injury can bring suit under the California Consumer Legal Remedies Act.

The ruling came in a case named Meyer v. Sprint Spectrum LP.

What does this mean for San Diegans? It means that even if it is all but certain that you will lose money or suffer some other type of injury from a business’s conduct, you cannot sue to prevent that injury. You must first suffer the injury, then you can sue.

In the case, consumers brought suit against Sprint to prevent Sprint from charging them early termination fees and to change the arbitration provisions contained in the phone service contracts. However, because the consumers had not yet incurred the early termination fees, the Court ruled that they could not bring suit.

Vista Skateboarder Dies in Hit and Run San Diego County Auto Accident

A 15-year old Vista boy was killed by a hit and run driver in a tragic Vista car accident while he was skateboarding on Thibodo Road east of Edna Way. The teenager, identified as Lucas Giaconelli, was a freshman at Rancho Buena Vista High School.

This tragic accident happened on Friday, January 29,2010, around 7 p.m., when Lucas was struck from behind by a high-speed 1990 Toyota Camry while he was skateboarding with his friends. Lucas was knocked down to the street and was taken to an Escondido hospital where he succumbed to his injuries within an hour of arrival. The suspected driver was said to be driving a white model of Camry with tinted windows. It is believed to have a broken headlight and front-end damage, reported Sheriff’s Deputies.

Serious pedestrian accidents like these tend to shake our trust and faith in humanity. How cruel is it to leave anyone, most of all a child, gravely injured and bleeding on the road? The entire Vista community is shocked and grieving! Our office wishes to convey our sincere prayers and condolences to the family and friends of Lucas Giaconelli in such heartbreaking times. We hope for the accused to be caught soon.

Indio Pedestrian Fatally Struck by Motorcycle, then Car

44-year-old Brigitte Jasso was struck and killed in a severe pedestrian accident that occurred on January 26, 2012, around along the westbound lanes of Indio Boulevard. According to coroner’s officials, Jasso was first struck by a motorcyclist and then by a black Ford Taurus while crossing a major street in that city.

Jasso sustained scrapes, bruises, and some broken bones after the initial motorcycle accident moments later, a black Ford Taurus struck and fatally injured the victim.

From the present facts, it is unclear as to how this pedestrian accident occurred. Was the motorcyclist distracted? Did the car driver see her?

Did anyone ignore traffic signals? These and several other questions remains unanswered as yet.

At this time, the victim’s family members should immediately seek counsel from an experienced Riverside County car and motorcycle accident lawyer who would educate them about their legal rights. If negligent operation by any of the motorist caused this car accident, then he may be legally required to compensate the victim’s family for the cost of treatment, and other related damages.

The victim’s family members may file a wrongful death claim against the at-fault motorist to obtain compensation to cover funeral and burial costs, loss of love, care and companionship, and other accident-related damages.

Our law office sends sincere condolences to the victim’s family members.

Traumatic Brain Injury Diagnosed in Sixth Former NFL Player

A 6th former National Football League player has been diagnosed with traumatic brain injuries similar to what boxers suffer from multiple blows to the head.

Doctors at Boston University School of Medicine studied the brain of Tom McHale and determined that he suffered from a traumatic brain injury before his death last May. McHale was 45 and played in the NFL from 1987-1995 for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

According to McHale’s family, injuries from football and dealing with his pain led to a psychological downturn:

McHale played on N.F.L. offensive lines for nine seasons, most of them with the Buccaneers, before retiring and running several Tampa-area restaurants. According to his widow, Lisa, he developed such chronic pain in his shoulders and other joints that in 2005 he began taking improperly large doses of the painkiller OxyContin, which exacerbated his lethargy and depression and led him to take cocaine occasionally to offset those effects.

McHale spiraled downward, went through drug rehabilitation three times, and died on May 25, 2008, of a lethal — and deemed by the police, accidental — combination of oxycodone and cocaine. His death shocked many former teammates and players, several of whom remembered him as an intelligent and responsible man.

Doctors concluded that McHale’s condition was the result of repetitive head trauma. In some cases, McHale’s condition can lead to the onset of dementia.

In serious car accidents, people can be subjected to significant forces to their head and brain–not unlike what a boxer or football player experiences. In some cases, this leads to concussions. In others, it leads to traumatic brain injuries. It’s important to keep McHale’s story in mind when we start to see possible signs of traumatic brain injury. In some cases, the injury can progress as severely as McHale’s condition.

San Diego Woman Stabbed After Car Crash

Late Wednesday night a 69-year-old woman was assaulted and stabbed in the neck with a box cutter by the man who had just rear-ended the car the woman was driving. The surprise attack caused the woman to step on the gas to flee and ended up crashing her car headlong into a tree. The car accident happened in the Old Town area of San Diego.

Police described the woman’s injuries as not life-threatening, although the attack was–at the very least–terrifying and unexpected. The man is described as a Hispanic male, 20-30 years of age, 5 feet 9 inches tall and weighing approximately 160-180 pounds.

This assault is particularly scary and unnerving. By all accounts, the woman was willing to exchange insurance information with the man, had rolled down her window, and was then stabbed.

California Emergency Room Doctors Sue State For Failing Health Care System

California emergency room doctors have filed a class-action lawsuit against the State of California alleging that California’s healthcare system–stretched and burdened by its’ thin budget and high demand for services–is about to collapse on itself. The suit comes at a time when hospitals and emergency rooms are closing at alarming numbers, leading to limited emergency care for injured Californians.

The situation is only becoming worse with the State proposing $1.1 billion in cuts to MediCal, California’s low-income health payment system.

This is the second lawsuit brought by doctors against the State of California within a year. In the first lawsuit, led by the California Medical Association, doctors were able to obtain an injunction against the State’s proposal to cut MediCal reimbursement rates to healthcare providers by 10%. The State instead reduced current reimbursement rates by 1% to 5%.

Emergency room doctors have been particularly hard hit by the healthcare crisis since, unlike other doctors, they cannot choose to turn away low-income patients who rely on MediCal.

Victim of Fatal Oceanside Auto Accident Identified

Finally, after much investigation, the identity of a man who died from an car crash in Oceanside was revealed by authorities yesterday as Richard W. Elmore. 95 years old and a widow, the San Diego County medical examiner said that Elmore was found unresponsive in his car on Friday, January 22, along the 1900 block of Henie Hills Drive in Oceanside. He was declared dead at 6:16 p.m. shortly after he was brought to the Tri-City Hospital’s emergency room by paramedics. He was given advanced cardiac life support while on the way to the hospital.

According to authorities, Elmore’s car accident and subsequent death was accidental in nature and involved serious trauma to his spine as a result of the force of the collision. Despite this, it is unknown when the car crash happened and Oceanside police are investigating the case.

This appears to be just one of the many San Diego auto accidents that could have been prevented with awareness and care when driving. It is important therefore to always remember safety and traffic rules when on the road to avoid such losses as Elmore’s case. Nevertheless, the loss of life is always tragic and we want to pass our thoughts and prayers along to Mr. Elmore’s family for their loss.

If you are in need of assistance following an Oceanside auto accident, please contact San Diego car accident lawyer and the San Diego personal injury lawyers. They will be able to assist you in whatever case you have. You may contact these California personal injury attorneys.

You will be given a free consultation and helpful information regarding your San Diego auto or truck accident.

Pedestrian Struck in Lake Elsinore Car Accident

A woman was struck and injured in a severe pedestrian accident that took place on January 22, 2012, around 8:07 p.m. in Lake Elsinore. According to Riverside County sheriff’s officials, the pedestrian was crossing a major road when she got hit by a white sedan struck along the 32600 block of Mission Trail, about a half-mile north of Corydon Road.

Deputies found the woman lying in the street and immediately transported her to Inland Valley Medical Center for treatment. From the present facts, it is unclear as to how this pedestrian accident occurred. Was the motorist distracted? Or was he speeding?

At this time, the victim’s family members should immediately seek counsel from an experienced Riverside County car accident lawyer who would educate them about their legal rights. If negligent operation by the motorist caused this car accident, then he may be legally required to compensate the victim’s family for the cost of treatment, and other related damages.

Our personal injury law office hopes that the injuries suffered by the victim heal soon and do not prove serious.

Two Women and a Toddler Struck by Car in San Marcos

Two women, ages 61 and 40, and a 3-year-old girl were struck while crossing a street on January 24, 2012, around 3 p.m. in San Marcos. According to sheriff’s Deputy Tammy Bennetts, the victims were struck by a 22-year-old woman turning her car from westbound Positive Place onto the southbound Tiger Way.

The injured victims were immediately transported to nearby hospitals for medical treatment. From the present facts, it is unclear as to how this serious car crash occurred. Was the car driver drunk? Or was she speeding?

At this time, the victims’ family members should immediately seek counsel from an experienced San Diego County pedestrian accident lawyer who would educate them about their legal rights. The car driver may be legally required to compensate the victims’ family for the cost of treatment, and other related damages.

Our San Diego personal injury law office hopes that the injuries suffered by all the victims heal soon and do not prove serious.

Pedestrian Struck By Train in Sorrento Valley

18-year-old Luis Cortez was struck and injured in a severe pedestrian accident that occurred on February 20, 2012, around 3 p.m. in Sorrento Valley. According to the sheriff’s department, Cortez was walking on the railroad tracks near the Sorrento Valley Station when a northbound AMTRAK train traveling at 45 mph struck him.

Cortez sustained minor injuries and was put on the train to the Solana Beach Station by AMTRAK personnel after examining his condition. He was later transported to Scripps Hospital in La Jolla for medical treatment.

Based upon a reading of Section 21950, it is quite possible that both the train conductor and pedestrian may be responsible for this pedestrian accident. If the AMTRAK operator saw or could have seen the pedestrian crossing the rail tracks, this accident could have been prevented. Further, because the pedestrian may not be 100% at fault and the driver 100% fault-free under their responsibilities set forth by California law, the family of the pedestrian may still be able to recover damages.

In situations such as this one, where a pedestrian is the victim of a serious train accident, the family members of the victim may benefit from speaking with a San Diego pedestrian accident lawyer.

Our personal injury law office hopes that the injuries suffered by the victim do not prove fatal.

Bicyclist Critically Injured in Sorrento Valley Car Accident

A 45-year-old bicyclist was struck and injured in a serious car crash that occurred on January 19, 2012, around 1 p.m. in Sorrento Valley. According to San Diego police, the bicyclist was riding to the east in a bike lane in the 6000 block of Sorrento Valley Boulevard when he was struck by a Toyota Camry traveling in the same direction.

The sedan smashed into a roadside tree and later came to rest on top of the bicyclist. Medics responding to this serious car accident immediately transported the injured victim to a nearby hospital for treatment.

From the present facts, it is unclear as to how this car collision occurred. Was the car driver distracted? Or was he speeding?

The victim’s family members should immediately seek counsel from an experienced San Diego County car collision lawyer, who would educate them about their legal rights.

If the motorist’s negligent driving caused this car wreck, then he may be legally required to compensate the biker for the hospital, medical and treatment costs, and other related damages.

Our personal injury law office hopes that the injuries suffered by the victim heal soon and do not prove fatal.

Committee Calls for CDC to Lower Threshold on Identifying Child Lead Poisoning

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has been asked by a federal advisory committee to lower its threshold for diagnosing cases of lead poisoning in children. The lowering of the threshold would have lower levels of lead toxicity in children be identified as dangerous, bringing more attention to a serious problem that can have life-long effects, according to The New York Times.

This is the first recommendation for lowering the lead poisoning threshold in 20 years and would lower the official diagnosis of lead poisoning from 10 micrograms of lead per deciliter of blood to five micrograms. It is expected that by doing so, hundreds of thousands more children would be diagnosed as suffering from lead poisoning, with approximately 250,000 children already diagnosed in the United States. It is believed that a lowering of the threshold would result in an increase in the safety of living conditions for children throughout the U.S.

Lead poisoning typically results from exposure to paint that contains lead, which is often found in homes built before 1978. The paint deteriorates into flakes and dust which poses a danger to any who are exposed, with children being especially vulnerable. When a child’s body contains a high level of lead, he or she can suffer injuries to developing organs, such as the brain and kidneys. As such, cognitive and physiological functions can suffer permanent damage that will last for the child’s entire life. Because these effects are so devastating, it is important for all families to practice caution when it comes to lead exposure, especially for any children that may be affected.

Any injuries a child suffers, especially ones that hinder his or her development, are incredibly serious and traumatizing. If your child has been injured due to another’s negligence, the San Diego child injury attorneys can help you and your child find compensation to aid in the road to recovery. Call our offices today for a consultation on your case.

MSNBC Takes on Federal Medical Device Preemption

Federal preemption of state laws is a dry subject. It puts lawyers and law students asleep.

However, the consequences of preemption can be both real and significant.

The Supreme Court recently in Riegel v. Medtronic decided that a state tort injury actions for defective medical devices are barred when the FDA grants the device premarket approval through the federal Medical Devices Act.

With such a technical ruling, the national media has largely ignored the far-reaching significance of this ruling. However, MSNBC’s Keith Olberman recently took on the federal preemption issue in Riegel–and took the opportunity to bash Bush (shocker!)–in his usual one-sided presentation of facts.

Like Ronald Miller of the Maryland Injury Lawyer Blog, who drew our attention to the video, I’m not a big fan of Olberman. In fact, I’d probably agree to any derogatory term used to describe him and he hasn’t been funny or clever since his time on ESPN. But he deserves some credit for taking notice of this ruling.

Train Accident Claims Man’s Life in Oceanside

A freight train accident claimed a man’s life in Oceanside recently, according to a news report from NBC San Diego. According to investigators, the man was walking on or near the train crossing at Mission Avenue when the freight train, operated by BSNF, struck him.

At least one eyewitness was present at the scene of the crash, which occurred around 10 p.m. He reported that it looked like the man was trying to cross the train tracks as the train approached. The witness described the train’s whistle blowing and the train braking, but it was unable to stop before the collision occurred.

Rescue workers rushed to the scene, but they were unable to save the life of the man struck by the freight train. A second person, who appeared to be accompanying the accident victim, was examined by rescue workers, but no report has been released on whether this person was injured.

Railroad accidents in the United States are tracked by the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA). The FRA’s statistics show that, while collisions between trains and pedestrians are rare, they are almost always fatal. For instance, in 2012 the FRA recorded 89 total deaths in railroad accidents in California, including 61 deaths suffered by pedestrians on the railroad and 28 deaths suffered by railroad workers.

Our practiced San Diego train accident wrongful death attorneys understand how devastating the untimely loss of a loved one can be. That’s why we’re committed to helping you get the compensation you and your family need after an injury or loss. To learn more about your legal rights and how we can help, contact us today.

Pedestrian Fatally Struck in San Diego County Car Accident

A pedestrian was fatally struck by a vehicle on January 19, 2012, around 6 a.m. in Vista. According to San Diego County sheriff’s Lt. Jeff Maxin, this pedestrian accident occurred on North Melrose Drive and West Lost Angeles Drive.

The pedestrian suffered life-threatening injuries. The motorist remained at the accident scene.From the present facts, it is unclear as to how this pedestrian accident occurred. Was the motorist distracted? Or was he speeding?

The victim’s family members should immediately seek counsel from an experienced San Diego County pedestrian accident lawyer, who would educate them about their legal rights. The victim’s family members may file a wrongful death claim against the car driver to obtain compensation to cover funeral and burial costs, loss of love, care and companionship, and other accident-related damages.

Our law office sends sincere condolences to victim’s family members.

Woman Fatally Struck in Riverside County Pedestrian Accident

45-year-old Adeline Gonzalez was fatally struck in a tragic Riverside County car crash that involved an SUV, on January 16, 2012, around 6:06 p.m. along Mission Boulevard, about 100 yards west of Pedley Road. According to Riverside County coroner’s officials, Gonzalez was struck by an SUV while she was crossing a roadway in the Glen Avon section of Jurupa Valley.

Gonzalez suffered fatal injuries and was pronounced dead at the accident scene. From the present facts, it is unclear as to how this pedestrian accident occurred. Was the motorist distracted? Or was he speeding?

The victim’s family members should immediately seek counsel from an experienced Riverside County pedestrian accident lawyer, who would educate them about their legal rights. The victim’s family members may file a wrongful death claim against the SUV driver to obtain compensation to cover funeral and burial costs, loss of love, care and companionship, and other accident-related damages.

Our law office sends sincere condolences to victim’s family members.

Elderly Pedestrian Fatally Struck in Palm Springs Car Accident

An elderly pedestrian was fatally struck in a Palm Springs car accident that occurred on January 14, 2012, around 7:49 p.m. in Palm Springs. According to police, the pedestrian was struck by a southbound Kia Soul along South Sunrise Way between Camino Parolcela and Sunny Dunes Road.

The victim suffered life-threatening injuries and was immediately transported to a nearby hospital, where she was later pronounced dead. From the present information, it is evident that negligent driving and irresponsible actions of the car driver led to this serious pedestrian accident.

At this time, the victim’s family members should immediately seek counsel from an experienced Riverside County pedestrian accident lawyer who would educate them about their legal rights. If negligent driving caused this pedestrian accident, then the driver might be legally required to compensate the victim’s family for funeral and burial costs, loss of love, care and companionship, and other accident-related damages.

Our law office sends sincere condolences to victim’s family members.

Protecting Yourself from Dog Attacks in San Diego

While dogs provide wonderful companionship to families and individuals every day around the world, man’s best friend can also pose a danger of bites that can leave long-lasting harm to a victim. Although these attacks are often sudden and unexpected, steps can be taken to protect yourself and your loved ones from a dog bite incident in San Diego, so follow these tips.

Preventing a Dog Bite

In order to prevent an attack when encountering a dog, follow these steps:

  • Do not interact with an unknown dog, and only interact with an animal when its owner gives permission.
  • Do not interact with canines that are eating, drinking, restrained, sleeping, resting, injured, very old, or with their puppies. They will naturally be more defensive and more likely to attack.
  • If in danger of an attack, prevent interaction with the animal and remain calm. Do not run away, as this will cause the dog to chase and attack you. Instead, stand still at a 90-degree angle to the dog, avoid eye contact, and slowly back away after it loses interest.

During a Dog Attack

If you are attacked by a dog, it is important to follow these tips in order to minimize injury and the duration of the attack:

  • Give the animal any loose items you have, such as jackets and bags, to distract them and keep them from biting you.
  • Put anything you can between you and the dog (tables, chairs, etc.) to stop it from getting close and biting.
  • Loudly and authoritatively yell commands such as “No” and “Stop,” which the dog may be trained to obey.
  • If you are knocked down, curl up on the ground with your legs tucked underneath you, head facing the ground, and hands behind your head and neck. This will minimize the damage that a dog can do while attacking.

While many dog attacks can be prevented every year, there are still many others that are unavoidable. When such attacks are the result of another’s negligence or reckless behavior, injured victims can seek compensation from the responsible party. If you or a loved one has been injured in such an incident, the San Diego dog bite injury attorneys can apply their years of experience to help you find compensation for your injuries. For more information on how we can aid you in your case, contact us.

Recent San Diego-Area Hot Air Balloon Accidents Highlight Need for Safety

Every southern California injury attorney has seen injuries that resulted from recreational activities gone wrong. Southern California is one of the world’s most beloved tourist spots, featuring amusement parks, ocean getaways, and other natural sites – but certain activities carry an increased risk of injury.

Two recent accidents involving hot air balloon rides underscore the need to practice safety when enjoying recreational events. The first, according to a report from KESQ, involved a family taking a hot air balloon ride in Palm Desert, California. The balloon crash-landed near the end of the ride, shaking up those in the basket and causing minor injuries to several people, all of whom are expected to recover.

Bicyclist Suffers Broken Leg in Riverside DUI Crash

A bicyclist was gravely injured in a serious Riverside DUI car accident that occurred on January 10, 2012, around 12:30 p.m. along the 300 block of East Seventh Street in San Jacinto. According to Riverside County sheriff’s officials, the bicyclist was injured in a traffic collision by 31-year-old Timothy Christopher Jones.

The bicyclist suffered a broken leg and was immediately transported to the nearby hospital for medical treatment. Jones was arrested and booked for investigation of misdemeanor DUI.

Jones will most likely be found to have violated California Vehicle Code Section 23152(a) which states that “It is unlawful for any person who is under the influence of any alcoholic beverage or drug, or under the combined influence of any alcoholic beverage and drug, to drive a vehicle.” Under California law, it is also illegal to drive a vehicle with a blood alcohol content of 0.08 percent or higher.

The bicyclist’s family members would be well advised to confer with an experienced Riverside County DUI accident lawyer who would educate them about their legal rights and options. The victim’s family members may file a personal injury claim against the car driver to obtain compensation to cover medical, hospital and treatment cost, and other accident-related damages.

Our personal injury law office hopes that the injuries suffered by the victim heal soon and do not prove fatal.

San Bernardino Car Crash Kills Bicyclist

60-year-old Bernard F. Culverson was fatally struck in a serious San Bernardino auto accident that occurred on January 9, 2012, around 5:30 a.m. west on Third Street. According to police, Culverson was riding his unlit bicycle when he crossed into the intersection with Waterman Avenue and got hit by a car being driven by 28-year-old Benito Bustos-Gonzalez.

Culverson sustained fatal internal injuries and was immediately transported to Loma Linda University Medical Center where he was pronounced dead, around 3:41a.m., the next day. According to police, Gonzalez entered the street on a green light and was not even licensed to drive.

From the present information, it is evident that negligent driving and irresponsible actions of the car driver led to this serious bicycle accident.

The victim’s family members should immediately seek counsel from an experienced San Bernardino County bicycle accident lawyer who would educate them about their legal rights. The victim’s family members may file a wrongful death claim against the car driver to obtain compensation to cover funeral and burial costs, loss of love, care and companionship, and other accident-related damages.

Our law office sends sincere condolences to victim’s family members.

Be on the Lookout for Signs of San Diego Elder Abuse

The decision of how to best take care of your parents as they grow older is a difficult process for everyone, but these decisions can become even more problematic when taking into consideration the threat of elder abuse present in many nursing homes across the nation. Elder abuse is defined as the unfair and harmful treatment of an elderly person and can be physical, emotional, sexual, financial, or neglectful in nature.

While elder abuse can occur anywhere, these incidents are often found to happen in nursing homes, making it difficult for relatives to detect and end. As such, it is important for relatives to look for signs of both elder neglect and abuse when visiting relatives. According to the National Center on Elder Abuse, different forms of abuse can result in different signs and symptoms. As such, it is important to be aware of the following signs:

  • Bruises, welts, lacerations, broken or fractured bones, sprains, and dislocations.
  • Untreated injuries in various stages of healing.
  • Sudden change in behavior in elder.
  • Caregiver’s refusal to allow visitors to see an elder alone.
  • Damage of elder’s genital area.
  • Unusual behavior and emotions not typically associated with the elder.
  • Untreated or unattended health problems.
  • Unsafe or unclean living conditions.
  • Malnourishment and poor personal hygiene.
  • Abrupt and unexplained changes in bank accounts, withdrawals, financial documents, or asset transfers.

These are just some of the many ways that elder abuse can show itself. All relatives should stay aware of any and all detrimental changes in an elder’s physical, emotional, financial, and sexual well-being as these can be brought about by various instances of elder abuse.

Elder abuse is not only committed by elders but is often perpetrated by relatives. If you believe one of your relatives is the victim of elder abuse in Southern California, the San Diego elder abuse attorneys can help you find justice and compensation for your relative. Contact our offices today for a free consultation on your case.

Pedestrian Fatally Struck by Train in Rialto

A person was fatally struck by an eastbound Metrolink commuter train on January 4, 2012, around 6 p.m. near Acacia Avenue. According to San Bernardino County coroner’s office, the pedestrian was struck by the train as he walked on the tracks. At this time, it is unknown whether the victim was a man or boy.

Rialto police Sgt. Robert Smith said that identification process to take some time given the battered condition of the body. From the present facts, it is unclear as to how this train accident occurred. Did the train driver ignore a red signal? Was he distracted that he did not notice the victim? Or was it the victim’s failure to observe safety signals?

At this time, the victim’s family members should immediately seek counsel from an experienced San Bernardino County train accident lawyer who would educate them about their legal rights. If negligent operation by the train conductor caused this train accident, then the train conductor and his employer might be legally required to compensate the victim’s family for the cost of funeral expenses, loss of love and companionship, and other related damages.

Our personal injury law office sends sincere condolences to victim’s family members.

Pedestrian Fatally Struck in Palm Springs Truck Accident

A pedestrian was hit by a truck in a crosswalk of a Palm Springs intersection at North Palm Canyon and Racquet Club Drives on January 5, 2012, around 8:04 a.m. in Palm Springs. According to the police, the pedestrian was struck by an Isuzu panel truck while walking across the crosswalk.

The victim suffered life-threatening injuries and was immediately transported to a nearby hospital where he was later pronounced dead.

If the motorist is determined to have been at fault in this case, then he could be held responsible for this truck accident that killed a pedestrian. The victim’s family members should immediately seek counsel from an experienced Riverside County hit-and-run crash lawyer who would educate them about their legal rights and options.

This lawyer may help them file a wrongful death claim against the truck driver to obtain compensation to funeral and burial costs, loss of anticipated earnings, loss of love, care and companionship, and other accident-related damages.

Our personal injury law office sends sincere condolences to the victim’s family members and friends.

Pipeline Breaks Present Health, Injury Hazards in California and Other States

Sixteen spills from oil pipelines have leaked a combined 2.4 million gallons of crude oil into waterways in California and other states in recent years, posing health and injury risks to pipeline workers and residents in the areas, according to an article from The Associated Press. The San Diego injury attorneys follow such cases closely because the injury risks associated with them can be long-reaching and long-lasting.

Since 1993, regulators have paid careful attention to pipeline spills in multiple states, including California. One particular source of concern comes from pipelines that are buried under navigable waterways, like rivers and streams. These pipelines are required to be buried only four feet under the waterway and are required to be inspected for weaknesses only once every five years. If a pipeline near water breaks, leaking oil and other materials can easily contaminate drinking water supplies, posing serious health hazards for those in the area.

San Diego Teacher Awarded $1 Million in Discrimination Lawsuit

On December 11, 2007, a former Chula Vista third-grade teacher won a judgment of more than $1 million after a jury decided that she had been wrongfully terminated due to becoming pregnant.

Danielle Coziahr was a third-grade teacher at Silver Wing Elementary School in Otay Mesa from 2004-06. She was “probationary”, meaning that she had not obtained tenure at her position. Although the Chula Vista School District can generally choose not to renew teaching contracts for any reason, a jury decided that the real reason Ms. Coziahr was let go was because she is a woman and she was pregnant.

The jury awarded Coziahr $1,012,720 with the largest portion being future economic loss due to future lost wages. Coziahr presented evidence that she had been effectively blackballed and could not obtain another teaching position.

Ms. Coziahr provided an interview to local media. The extent of the discrimination that she suffered was inexcusable and Ms. Coziahr rightly feels justified.

CPSC Recall Highlights Dangerous Winter Weather Products

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) has recently released a report detailing winter-weather related products that have been recalled by the organization that people may still have in their homes. These products help to heat houses during cold weather and as such are much more likely to cause an accidental injury or property damage now that winter has arrived.

All of the five products listed by the CPSC have the potential to overheat and cause a fire or a form of burn injury due to their unsafe nature. The recalled products are:

  • Meijer Touch Point Oscillating Ceramic Heaters – Possibility of oscillating mechanism shorting out can pose a risk of fire.
  • Flow Pro, Airtech, Aloha Breeze, and Comfort Essentials Heaters – Risk of malfunctioning that leads to overheating, smoking, burning, melting, and possible fire.
  • Lasko Portable Electric Heaters – Overheating of electrical connection can lead to melting and possible fire hazard.
  • Honeywell Electric Baseboard and Fan Heater Thermostats – Can overheat, causing them to smoke and melt, posing a risk of burn injury.
  • GE Zoneline Air Conditioners and Heaters – Possible failure of electrical component may cause fire.

While consumers are warned to not leave space heaters unattended and to make sure that there are no surrounding objects which may pose a fire risk due to a nearby heater, the malfunctions in the dangerous household products listed put consumers at serious risk. Even when a consumer takes all due precautions with the products they use, malfunctioning equipment may cause accidents and injuries which even the most cautious consumer cannot prevent.

If you or a loved one has been injured by a hazardous product, contact a defective product lawyer in San Diego County. Our experienced law team can apply their years of work in the personal injury field to your case to win the best results possible.

82-year-old Pedestrian Fatally Struck by SUV in North Park

82-year-old Patricia Dora Martin was struck by a sports utility vehicle while crossing an intersection at 30th Street and Howard Avenue on January 1, 2012, around 4:15 p.m. in North Park. According to San Diego police, Martin was struck by a 2011 Toyota RAV4 being driven by a man.

Martin sustained critical head injuries and was immediately transported to Scripps Mercy Hospital, where she was pronounced dead around 10 p.m.

If the motorist is determined to have been at fault in this case, then he could be held responsible for this car accident that killed an elderly pedestrian. The victim’s family members may file a wrongful death claim against the SUV driver to obtain compensation to funeral and burial costs, loss of anticipated earnings, loss of love, care and companionship, and other accident-related damages.

Our San Diego law office sends sincere condolences to victim’s family members and friends.

New Year, New Laws: 2013 Laws Affecting Consumers in California

We want to wish everyone a happy New Year! Now that 2012 is a thing of the past, what can we expect in 2013 as a Californian?

At the turn of the New Year, there were a total of 876 new California laws that went into effect. The new laws range from making picketing at funerals a crime (SB 661) to prohibiting college officials from requesting/requiring students to disclose access to personal social media accounts (SB 1349).

San Diego Drunk Driver Crashes into Car with Flat Tire on I-5

A San Diego man was injured during the early hours of December 26 after his vehicle was struck by a drunk driver while on the side of Interstate 5 because of a flat tire. The incident occurred around 1:45 am on the northbound 5 freeway in San Diego when a drunk driver struck a Chevy Malibu parked on the side of the road, causing the Malibu to flip over several times, according to 10News.com.

Luckily, the driver of the vehicle only suffered minor wounds, including a cut on his head, and was able to crawl out of the wreckage. The drunk driver was arrested by California Highway Patrol and is now being held in San Diego County Jail. There were no other victims of the crash.

According to a recent study by Insurance.com, San Diego is the number one city in the country for DUI citations. San Diego was named number one for both 2010 and 2011 according to the study, beating out other cities such as Los Angeles and Indianapolis. While the stats do not necessarily mean that the city has more drunk drivers than anywhere else, it does show that there are many who drive under the influence of alcohol in the state every day.

In 2010, drunk driving-related car crashes resulted in 10,228 fatalities total throughout the United States, with 791 of these occurring in California alone, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). Every year, thousands of people are injured by drunk drivers and thousands more are killed. Even as state and local law enforcement continues to crack down on those who choose to drive while intoxicated, it is estimated that a person drives drunk an average of 80 times before he or she is arrested, according to Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD).

Vehicle accidents caused by drunk drivers can result in devastating injuries for those victimized. If you or a loved one has been injured by someone driving under the influence of alcohol, the drunk driving victim attorneys in San Diego can help you recover compensation for your losses and injuries. Contact us today for a free consultation on your case.