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September 13, 2014

Daytona Traffic Collisions & Risks of Legalized Marijuana

In the last two decades, numerous states have radically reformed stances on marijuana, creating a vast patchwork of laws from place-to-place. However, no matter where you live, driving under the impairing influence of any substance - legal or otherwise - is against the law. hempleaf.jpg

Florida may soon be among those to allow consumption of cannabis for medicinal purposes. Voters are set to consider Amendment 2 in November. But the measure has staunch opponents, and some of those have come forward to say that if the law passes, Floridians will be gambling with their safety on the roadway.

Specifically, the "Don't Let Florida Go to Pot" coalition, which includes the Florida Sheriffs Association, asserts that 25 percent of all deadly wrecks are connected to the consumption of marijuana. Our Daytona Beach car accident attorneys have seen the devastation wrought by impaired drivers. Would the passage of this measure mean more of these tragedies in Florida?

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September 10, 2014

More Florida Car Accident Victims Hiring Injury Lawyers

The Insurance Research Council has just released a study revealing those injured in car accidents are increasingly more likely to hire an attorney to represent them when making a claim.
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In 2012, the IRC reported 36 percent of personal injury protection claimants were represented by a lawyer, compared to 31 percent five years earlier. This is more than double the rate of the number who sought legal representation in 1977. For those pursuing bodily injury claims, the rate was almost 50 percent in 2012.

While the insurance industry is busy painting this as a huge negative, our Daytona Beach car accident lawyers know the real reason behind the increase has to do with the public's response to the tactics of insurers. People would not spend the money to secure a lawyer if they didn't have to do so. Unfortunately, the insurance industry has created a climate where their customers and the public at-large has come to expect they will receive unfair treatment.

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September 2, 2014

Tort Reform Just Means Less For Daytona Injury Victims

In the early 1990s, a fast-food chain lost a widely-publicized case in which an elderly woman spilled scalding hot coffee on herself, suffering third-degree burns. Despite being required to pay nearly $3 million in both compensatory and punitive damages, the restaurant company won in a big way.
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As highlighted in the new documentary, "Hot Coffee," the case was important in terms of convincing the public that the civil justice system had "run amok" with frivolous cases, and badly in need of reform. After all, how could a woman who spilled coffee on herself expect someone else to pay for it, especially considering we all know coffee is supposed to be hot.

But here is what our Daytona personal injury lawyers recognize was lost in the widely-derided case: Company executives admitted the beverage was not fit for human consumption because it was so outrageously hot. In fact, hundreds of people had already complained of suffering severe burns due to spills from this chain's hot beverages. Some of those hurt were infants and children. The company knew their beverages were served at temperatures far above those known to be safe -- and also 30 to 40 degrees above the competition. Despite this knowledge, the company did nothing to warn customers of the danger.

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August 25, 2014

Daytona Beach Traffic Accidents - High Risk of Tire Defects in Focus

For more than a decade, consumer advocates have argued for improved standards to help consumers tell the age of vehicle tires and determine when a tire might be "expired."
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However, our Daytona car accident lawyers understand they may be arguing for even longer, after the National Highway Traffic Safety Association declined to enact new regulations to address the issues.

The agency issued a report, summarizing a dozen years of research and asserting that Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard (FMVSS) No. 139 was sufficient to protect consumers. This was the standard enacted in 2006 that has resulted in enhanced tire safety standards and improved monitoring and alerts to driver when a tire is not properly inflated.

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August 20, 2014

Pool Owners, Manufacturers, Could be Liable for Injuries

Summer in Florida is prime time for pool fun. However, our Daytona pool injury lawyers recognize the potential for danger is great, particularly where children are concerned.
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Recently, the family of a 7-year-old Florida boy electrocuted in the family's pool filed a wrongful death lawsuit against both the manufacturer of the pool light, and the company that serviced it.

According to the complaint, Sloan v. Pentair Water Pool et al, the child's parents allege the boy was killed due to negligence by the two firms - specifically, negligence in design and manufacturing, failure to warn and vicarious liability (by the maintenance firm) for acts of omission.

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August 12, 2014

Child Drownings in Florida Persist Through Summer

Tragedy has gripped a family in northern Florida after the drowning death of a 4-year-old girl in the family's pool occurred at a gathering where 19 people were present.

Authorities believe the child slipped away and was reaching for an object in the pool. She was unable to swim, and roughly 20 minutes passed before the adults discovered her in the pool.
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The incident highlights how quickly and quietly a child-drowning death may occur. So far this year, officials in Florida report there have been a total of 42 child drownings, with nearly 70 percent of those involving children under the age of 3. Nearly half involved situations where the children were able to get out of the home and away from supervision without detection, according to the Tallahassee Democrat.

Our Daytona child injury lawyers know child drownings have been the No. 1 cause of child deaths this year, prompting both the Department of Children and Families and the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission to push campaigns urging families to teach children how to swim. The agencies are also pressing for parents to learn CPR and to become educated on how proper supervision can serve as a powerful prevention measure.

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August 8, 2014

Wrongful Deaths in Police Custody Warrant Accountability, Compensation

There is no question law enforcers and corrections officers have a difficult job, constantly balancing concerns of public safety with the rights of the accused.
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However, our Daytona Beach wrongful death lawyers have noted a number of recent in-custody deaths in Florida at the hands of those who vowed to serve and protect. While not every death that occurs in police custody is worthy of a wrongful death lawsuit, the fact is, many of these deaths involve cases of excessive force, improper use of restraints and inadequate medical care. Individuals suffering from drug addiction, mental illness or other special needs are disproportionately affected.

While each case is different, these civil lawsuits will assert the organization as a whole was negligent, grossly negligent or deliberately indifferent to the needs of the decedent. Often, the agency's policy, procedures (or lack thereof) or custom proximately caused the death of the person in custody. Too often, it is not until someone dies in police custody that necessary changes are enacted.

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August 1, 2014

Florida Boating Accident Kills 4, Prompts Calls for Increased Regulation

A boating accident in Florida's Biscayne Bay on the Fourth of July killed four people, injured a dozen more and has prompted a call for legislation that might help to prevent such tragedies from occurring in the future.
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Daytona Beach boating accident lawyers understand the crash occurred in the mad dash to return back to the docks following the fireworks display over the bay. Three boats collided, and numerous people were ejected. All of those killed were in their early 20s. Investigators have launched an inquiry into whether alcohol may have been a factor. Booze was found on board at least one of the vessels, but no criminal charges have been filed at this point.

The crash has been named the worst in Miami-Dade County history, and has prompted various members of the recreational boating community in Florida to call on lawmakers to enact measures that might improve safety.

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July 30, 2014

Florida Job-Related Crash Deaths Among Young Workers a Major Concern

Typically, the worst thing a pizza delivery driver fears is a bad tip. However, tragedy struck recently when one delivery person in Florida was involved in a crash that resulted in his death. drivefast.jpg

Authorities have indicated the 19-year-old driver was traveling at high speed when he lost control of the vehicle and struck a tree, killing him on impact.

Daytona car accident lawyers note in such cases, where there is indication the worker may have been at-fault, there is still workers' compensation benefits and third-party liability issues to consider. Workers' compensation is a "no fault" insurance program, meaning benefits are provided for those who suffer job-related injuries or illnesses, regardless of blame.

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July 27, 2014

Police: Daytona Nursing Home Abuse Investigation Blocked

Daytona Beach police allege an investigation into a probable case of sexual assault against a nursing home patient has been stonewalled by the facility, which has refused to allow detectives to interview either patients or health care workers.
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In order to get answers, police say they are working with the state attorney's office to secure subpoenas to force the facility to cooperate.

Daytona nursing home abuse lawyers know that sexual assault is a vastly under-reported crime. In nursing homes, such incidents are even less likely to come to light, given the fact that victims often cannot articulate what has happened or are too fearful to speak out.

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July 12, 2014

Sudden Weather Changes Spell Roadway Disaster in Florida

A sudden downpour caught officials and NASCAR drivers by surprise, resulting in a pileup of nine race cars at the Daytona International Speedway.
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The drivers had been on the verge of reaching peak speeds when a quick burst of torrential rain hit the backstretch of the track before officials on the frontstretch had a chance to wave the yellow flag. Several drivers swerved and spun out of control and an epic pileup ensued.

Our Daytona car accident lawyers note this as a classic example of how sudden weather can factor into serious crashes. We may not grapple with the snow and ice with which our Northern friends contend annually. However, we are prone to sudden downpours, flash-flooding, high winds, heavy fog and thick brush fire smoke. All of these serve to reduce visibility and decrease the road surface quality, making it tougher if not downright unsafe to navigate.

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July 5, 2014

Daytona Child Deaths, Injuries & Hot Cars

Recently, a 16-month-old baby was rescued from inside a hot car outside a Target store in Orange City, where the child's 17-year-old aunt had left the boy there while she went inside to grocery shop.
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The child was spotted by passersby, who saw the baby trapped and distress and called 911 as they broke into the car. A woman and her mother got the child out, but told Volusia County dispatchers, "he's really red and all sweaty." Authorities estimated 15 minutes had passed since the child had been left. The aunt, who said she forgot the baby, is expected to face misdemeanor charges.

Daytona Beach child injury lawyers understand that in 80-degree weather, it only takes 10 minutes in a hot car for temperatures to reach deadly levels. This is true even when the windows are rolled down two inches. And yet, research by the organization Safe Kids Worldwide found that almost 15 percent of parents had intentionally left children unattended in vehicles. For parents of children under the age of 3, the number was even higher - 23 percent.

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July 4, 2014

Gov. Scott Signs Tougher Hit-and-Run Legislation

The death of a 3-year-old girl following an apparent hit-and-run in Central Florida is being investigated by authorities with the Florida Highway Patrol, who say the girl was struck in the parking lot of her apartment complex. The child's 22-year-old mother, who reportedly did not see the incident, scooped up the child and called 911 as she rushed to the hospital in her own vehicle. Authorities told her to pull over and wait for emergency personnel. The child died at the hospital of her injuries.
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Daytona Beach hit-and-run accident lawyers know there is perhaps nothing worse in this world than losing a child. In these cases, the heartache is further exacerbated by the fact that the driver did not care enough to stop, as the law requires.

Up until very recently, drivers who fled serious accident scenes because they were drunk had incentive to do so. That's because the criminal penalties for leaving the scene of a crash were far less than what someone might expect if charged with DUI manslaughter.

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July 3, 2014

Daytona Injury Lawyers Wish Safe Fourth of July Weekend

Our Daytona Beach personal injury attorneys wish you and your family a safe and happy Fourth of July weekend.

Daytona Beach is a premier destination for summer fun. Whether you are here for boating, fishing, NASCAR, spending a day on a beach, or enjoying the nightlife, there is no shortage of things to do. We would just like to share some information and safety tips that can help you stay safe this holiday weekend. fireworks1.jpg

There are several areas where a little extra attention to safety can go a long way in preventing serious personal injury. One of those is water safety. Volusia County has compiled a list of tips to keep you family safe. Some of those tips focus on water safety and beach safety. One of the most important things you can do is to make sure that small children are constantly monitored when on the beach or in the water. Make sure you and your children always swim in view of a lifeguard and ask about rip currents. A rip current is a fast moving current that can pull you out to sea. Even the most experienced and strongest swimmers can be caught in a rip current. If you are caught in a rip current, the most important thing you can do is remain calm. Never fight the current. You should swim parallel to the current to escape.

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July 1, 2014

Whritenour v. Thompson - Florida Court Allows Negligence Claim to Proceed, Despite Bankruptcy Court Order

Florida's Second District Court of Appeals reversed an earlier summary judgement that barred a woman from seeking a negligence action against a driver who struck and seriously injured her son and his father.
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The appellate panel called the situation "unprecedented," and determined the trial court had erred as a matter of law in denying the plaintiff in Whritenour v. Thompson her right to a jury trial on the issue of negligence and damages.

Daytona car accident attorneys know that right to seek a trial for egregious wrongs is inherent in our justice system, and one that must not be denied. The courts were understandably thrown off, however, because the at-fault driver had filed for liquidation bankruptcy, which typically halts all creditor actions and later discharges most debts unless a specific exception is made by the court.

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