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Orange County Premises Liability Law Blog

Basic safety tips for motorcyclists this month and every month

We are fortunate in Southern California to have good weather almost all year. That’s why, when most motorcyclists around the country have to put their bikes in the garage all winter, bikers here in Orange County can continue to ride comfortably even in December.

Speaking of taking a December ride, you may be planning a road trip to visit family and friends over the next couple weeks. If so, please remember that roads are especially dangerous during the holiday season, particularly for motorcyclists. In today’s post, we’ll discuss some basic safety reminders.

Why are brain injuries so harmful to children?

Imagine that your child has just been involved in a serious accident that was the result of a negligent driver.  If you're like most parents here in California, then you're probably not only worried about the injuries you can see but the injuries you can't see as well.  And aside from getting your child the medical attention they need, you may be also worried about recovering the compensation they deserve as well.

To better address this concern, we wanted to start this week's blog post off with a question that could easily be on the minds of many of our readers right now: why are brain injuries so harmful to children?  By looking at the answer to this question we hope to illustrate the importance of seeking compensation for injuries after an accident, especially because of the long-term effects they can have on a child.

Understanding the 'Discovery' rule in wrongful death claims

No matter what a civil action seeks to do, there are statutes of limitations that apply. These are laws regarding how much time a plaintiff has before his or her right to file will expire. For a wrongful death case in California, the typical time limit is two years from the date of victim's death.

The start of the statute of limitations, however, may start from the time the victim's family learns of the cause of their loved one's death. One rule that applies to the statute of limitations, though, is the discovery rule. This rule is used to determine if the decedent knew or should have known of the cause of his or her death before it occurred. If so, the statute of limitations might be ruled to have begun before the decedent even died.

Study: Children's head and brain injuries most often due to falls

While most parents do whatever they can to keep their children safe, falls, stumbles and tumbles do occur. According to one recent study, those falls are the number one cause of head trauma for children.

The study, which was published in the New England Journal of Medicine, was led by a professor from the University of California, Davis School of Medicine who works in the university's pediatrics and emergency medicine departments. The study looked at 43,000 children who suffered head trauma and were seen at 25 emergency rooms between 2004 and 2006.

Location of injury on spinal cord dictates level of disability

No one wants to suffer a serious injury. Even more still do not want to suffer a serious injury to their spinal cord. But every year, about 12,000 new cases of spinal cord injuries are reported across the nation. In 2008 alone, nearly 260,000 people were living with some spinal cord injury.

Spinal cord injuries are a serious topic to us because they can result from a number of accidents including motor vehicles accidents, slips and falls, and sports accidents. Because the spinal cord carries messages from the parts of your body to your brain, an injury to this important body system can be devastating and life changing.

Medical journal confirms danger laundry pods pose to children

We've all seen them. Those small, brightly colored pouches filled with everything from laundry detergent to fabric softener. Created and sold by a number of big-name manufacturers, these laundry pods are designed to make our lives easier, allowing us to spend more time doing other things. But as a study published in the medical journal Pediatrics points out, these laundry pods are actually posing a danger to small children across the United States.

According to the report, more than 17,000 children age six and less were exposed to the pods across the country between 2012 and 2013. Of those cases, 769 led to hospitalization because the child had either placed the pod in his or her mouth or in their eye. Though the pods mostly just make a child sick for a period of time, in more severe cases, the pods have caused children to experience seizures and have even been known to cause patients to fall into a coma as well.

Why is it so hard for people to stop texting and driving?

We all know how dangerous distracted driving accidents can be. When one vehicle strikes another, the force is transferred from one vehicle to the other, which can cause serious or even fatal injuries to the occupants inside. When that other vehicle is a motorcycle, the damage can be even more prominent, which is why a lot of people would agree that if there is a way to stop distracted driving, it should be done.

In many states, such as here in California, distracted driving laws have been put in place to not only afford protections to other drivers but to hold reckless and negligent drivers accountable for their actions as well. Bans, such as the one that prohibits the use of a cellphone while operating a motor vehicle, is just one example of a step some states are taking to protect drivers on the road.

$175 million verdict calls one guardrail design unsafe

In 2005, the Federal Highway Administration approved a guardrail design that was supposed to absorb the impact of a motor vehicle crash, leading to fewer injuries in a serious accident. Called the ET-Plus, the guardrail made Trinity Industries, the manufacturer of the guardrail, $33 million in the first three quarters of this year when states across the nation began purchasing and installing the guardrail systems.

But in 2011, a whistleblower claimed that a minor change had been made to the system just after FHWA approval that was never reported to the government. That change, the whistleblower claimed, may have compromised the guardrail's structural integrity, meaning the guardrail might not perform as it was designed in a serious motor vehicle accident.

Injured Giants fan recovering but there's still a long way to go

In 2011, a San Francisco Giants fan made headlines for a terrible reason. While attending a game against the Los Angeles Dodgers, he was physically assaulted. The damage was so extensive that he suffered a traumatic brain injury. It left him with very serious disabilities, that led to a $14 million lawsuit against the Dodgers.

As a personal injury blog focused on incidents such as the one mentioned above that lead to serious injuries, it is easy to focus only on the front-end of the situation. It is often harder to understand exactly what damages awarded in a premises liability settlement or jury award are intended to do for a victim of another's negligence. 

TSA worker's death was due to negligence, lawsuit claims

The loss of a loved one is often a difficult tragedy for many people to get over. But when it's discovered that the loved one's death may have been the direct result of someone else's negligence, then the overwhelming grief that follows may lead a victim's family to seek compensation through a wrongful death lawsuit.

A case before a California Superior Court is doing just that. Some of our Santa Ana readers may have heard about the wrongful death lawsuit that was filed by a California family after their loved one was shot and killed while on the job at the Los Angeles International Airport last November. The terrifying event that led to the TSA agent's death was one that many in this state will not soon forget.

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