November 30, 2009

Pedestrian Sustains Critical Injuries in Hit-and-Run Accident

A 22-year-old woman sustained critical injuries in a Washington pedestrian accident after a car hit her and left the scene. According to an article in the News Tribune, the young woman from Kent, Washington, was walking along the 2400 block of Benson Road when she was struck. Washington State Patrol troopers apparently found the woman in the northbound lanes of the roadway, 150 to 200 feet from where she was hit. The woman was transported to a Seattle hospital for treatment of critical injuries.

Pedestrian accidents can cause extremely critical injuries including traumatic brain injuries, paralysis, broken bones, coma or even death. In the United States, about 1,000 innocent pedestrians are injured every day by negligent drivers. According to the Washington Department of Transportation (WSDOT), there were a total of 5,648 pedestrian accidents in the state in 2007. In those incidents, there were 208 fatalities and 867 serious injuries.

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November 27, 2009

Bicyclist Strikes and Severely Injures Child in Seattle Crosswalk

A 32-year-old bicyclist caused serious personal injuries to a 6-year-old boy near Pike Place Market in Seattle after he struck the child, who was walking in a crosswalk with his father and brother. According to a news report in the Seattle Times, the bicyclist was riding recklessly as he passed several cars, rode through a red light and hit the little boy, who was in a crosswalk. He tried to get back on his bike and ride away, but witnesses stopped him and held him until police arrived on scene. The child was taken to a Seattle hospital with a fractured jaw. According to the news report, the boy's jaw had to be wired shut. Authorities say the bicyclist will be charged with vehicular assault and hit-and-run.

Tragic accidents such as this one occur everyday in Seattle. In this particular case, the child sustained serious injuries as a result of another individual's negligence and blatant disregard for public safety. Asked by officials why he blew through the red light, the bicyclist told them that he thought he "could make it." Negligent bicyclists and drivers should be held accountable for their actions, because those actions cause a lot of pain, emotional distress and financial strain to victims and their families. In this particular case, this little boy suffered serious facial injuries.

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November 26, 2009

Washington One of 7 States Banning Hand-Held Cell Phone Use

As November begins, residents of the State of Washington must brush-up on new laws pertaining to hand-held cell phone use. According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, November 2009 marks the beginning of the ban against hand-held cell phones.

Based on the announcement, the other six states participating in the new ban besides Washington include California, New Jersey, Connecticut, Oregon, New York, and Utah, as well as the District of Columbia. Considering that Utah has defined the offense of using a hand-held cell phone as careless driving, it leaves one to question why all the other states issuing the ban have not done the same. On the other hand, speaking on a cell phone while driving will not be considered an offense in Utah unless a motorist is also committing some other moving violation other than speeding.

Many residents of Washington are likely to support the ban against hand-held cell phone use. This support is likely considering that it should contribute to lowering incidents of auto collisions caused by these devices distracting a driver or preventing a motorist from having both hands on the wheel. However, while Washington has banned texting while driving for all drivers, it has not issued a ban on young/novice drivers from using cell phones while driving, nor has a ban been placed against bus drivers from using cell phones while transporting a large bus with many passengers in tow.

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November 25, 2009

Stork Craft Crib Recall Largest In U.S. History

The Consumer Product Safety Commission has announced a recall of potentially dangerous cribs, the largest crib recall in the history of the United States. The CPSC is advising consumers to stop using The Stork Craft drop-down-side crib because it poses a serious strangulation risk to infants. Approximately 2.1 million of the cribs have been sold and are in use.

The move follows the news that 4 infants have died of suffocation after becoming entrapped in the crib’s drop down sides. There have also been at least 110 incidents in the United States and Canada when the drop-down sides of the cribs became detached, which resulted in dozens of babies either becoming entrapped between the side and the crib frame, or falling out of the crib altogether.

Drop down side cribs have a track record for injuring infants. Nearly 5 million cribs have been recalled over the past two years and the CPSC has discussed banning dropdown sides all together. Adding to the danger in this particular case is the fact that parts used to create the cribs are easily broken, missing, or misassembled. For instance, the crib's drop-side could come off its tracks and create a "hazardous gap which can lead to infant entrapment and suffocation."

Stork Craft has released a toll-free number for consumers to call, or to order a free repair kit: (877) 274-0277.

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November 24, 2009

Hoquiam 6-Year-Old Trick-or-Treater Injured in Pedestrian Accident

A recent article reported that a 6-year-old boy from Hoquiam was hit by a car on Halloween night and suffered leg and head injuries. It was noted that his condition was considered satisfactory on the morning of November 2, 2009. Although, sadly, this young child was hurt, he is lucky that he did not suffer more catastrophic injuries, which is unfortunately what usually occurs when vulnerably exposed pedestrians are struck by automobiles.

Apparently, while the State Patrol collision report stated that the young boy “darted out between cars” while crossing the street, the man accompanying the boy for trick-or-treating claims that the child did not jump into the road amidst traffic. When there are conflicting stories in auto accident and pedestrian accident incidents, law enforcement often turns to witnesses, as was the case in this particular situation. Based on the interviews witnesses provided regarding this pedestrian accident, law enforcement is currently standing by the claim that the driver was not at fault.

Although this particular accident was determined to have been caused by pedestrian inattention, some form of driver inattention may have also played a contributing role considering that many pedestrian accidents in Washington are caused by negligent motorists.

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November 23, 2009

Rainier Beach Pedestrian Critically Injured

On the morning of November 19th there was a two-vehicle versus pedestrian collision near Renton Avenue South and 62nd Avenue South. A white pickup truck, driven by a 43-year-old male, was towing a black car. The car was being driven by a 45-year-old male, using a nylon rope as a tow cable. The two vehicles were traveling southeast on Renton Avenue South approaching 62nd Avenue South. At the same time, in an unmarked crosswalk, a 44-year-old male pedestrian was crossing 62nd Avenue South.

According to preliminary investigations, the driver of the truck made a right turn onto 62nd Avenue South. The car being towed did not make the turn and continued going straight. The pedestrian’s legs got caught on the towing rope, which caused him to lose his footing. The pedestrian then fell to the ground, and struck his head on the pavement.

The victim was transported to Harborview Medical Center with life-threatening injuries by SFD Medics who responded to the scene.

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November 20, 2009

Kirk Bernard's Tips on How to Protect Yourself from Typical Construction Site Injuries

As a construction accident attorney, Kirk Bernard is aware that when working on a construction site in the state of Washington, there are steps you can take to protect yourself from a construction site injury. Being aware of your surroundings and potential danger is the first step to avoid suffering an injury in a Seattle construction accident.

Make sure you wear appropriate personal protective equipment. Don’t, for example, show up at a construction site wearing thin-soled shoes. Nails could easily penetrate your shoes. Always wear a hard hat in designated areas. Tools could fall on your head, you could fall from a ladder or you could fall from a roof. Protect your head from potential head and brain injuries.

For more information regarding how you can help protect yourself against construction accident injuries, read the entire article.

November 20, 2009

Kirk Bernard Discusses Aftermath of Construction Wrongful Death Accidents in Washington

The death of a loved one can have a devastating impact on surviving family members. During this time of grief, it’s difficult to think of anything else except the loss of that special person.

But after the grieving ends, what is there to do about the ones who caused the death? Did the construction site employers, contractors and/or subcontractors fail to provide a safe environment for the loved one? Did that failure cause the accident that led to the death of the loved one?

Wrongful death can arise as a result of construction site accidents in Seattle. Wrongful death occurs when a person’s reckless or negligent actions result in the death of another. Wrongful death attorney Kirk Bernard knows that in order to win a wrongful death lawsuit, the following must be proven: defendant had a duty to the decedent; defendant breached that duty; death was caused by defendant’s breach of that duty; and the survivors have suffered damages as a result of the loss and death of the decedent.

To learn more about the aftermath of a construction accident wrongful death, read the full article here.

November 19, 2009

Kirk Bernard Addresses Whether Injured Passengers Have the Same Rights as Drivers in a Collision

A recently published article by Kirk Bernard on ArticleBase addresses how an auto accident can change a person’s life forever. There are vehicle repairs to worry about, of course, but those costs are often negligible compared to the other possible consequences. You may have to deal with medical issues that will affect you for the rest of your life; you may need to miss work for a long period; or you might even be unable to continue working. Most people know that as a driver they are eligible for damages if someone else was at fault, but people are often less clear about their rights as a passenger. If you have been injured in Washington State in an auto accident while you were a passenger, you should be aware that you do have rights.

To learn more about the legal rights of a passenger injured in an auto accident, read the entire article here.

November 19, 2009

Flammable Robes Recalled, Linked to Nine Deaths

The connection between nine deaths and extremely flammable women’s robes has instigated a recall by Blair LLC. According to a kfoxtv.com report, a Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) announcement stated that four additional reports of death linked to the full-length women’s chenille robes have been reported to Blair LLC of Warren, PA since June. Because of this, the company has expanded its recall to incorporate additional products imported from the Pakistani manufacturer. The recall now includes more chenille robes and three other chenille products, all made by A-One Textile & Towel, of Karachi, Pakistan.

What has been quite unnerving to consumers is that these dangerous robes were initially recalled in April by Blair after it discovered that three robes caught fire, including one incident in which a consumer suffered second-degree burns. Considering that the robes fail to meet federal flammability standards, they present great risk of serious burns to anyone who wears the garments while exposed to an open flame, such as a stove in the kitchen. Most of the reported deaths linked to the full-length robes took place when the victims were wearing the robes while cooking. A CPSC spokesman said that the victims were mainly in their 70s and 80s.

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November 18, 2009

Driver and 5 Passengers Killed in Kitsap County Crash

According to State Patrol, a collision late Friday night left a man dead on Highway 3 about three miles north of Poulsbo in Kitsap County. The man was 25-years-old, and from Marysville. He reportedly died at the scene.

The driver apparently failed to field to yield the right of way while pulling out of the Hilltop Store onto Southbound Highway 3. His car was struck by a pickup truck headed Northbound. The truck was driven by a 46-year-old Bainbridge Island man who was not hurt in the accident.

Five passengers car were hurt, including a one-year-old boy.

Two of the passengers, including a 29-year-old man and 23-year-old woman, were transported to Harrison Medical Center in Bremerton. The woman suffered from broken ribs and pelvis.

Additionally, two women, ages 20 and 21, were airlifted to Harborview Medical Center in Seattle with serious injuries. The young child was also airlifted to Harborview with a head injury. All of the passengers were from Marysville.

Both the car and the pickup were totaled in the accident. Drugs and alcohol are suspected in the crash according to the State Patrol.

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November 18, 2009

The Fine Points of a Seattle Personal Injury Claim

Across the mega city of Seattle, WA personal injury law firms similar to the Bernard Law Group represent a huge urban population in cases involving auto accidents, worker’s compensation, professional liability and much more. Each personal injury case is unique and Washington personal injury attorneys use their experience to ensure that their clients receive the fair compensation to which they are entitled. One of the first things that a Seattle personal injury lawyer like Kirk Bernard will do is to evaluate the client’s personal injury case with regard to the state laws of Washington, as well as federal and local statutes.

Learn more about the many fine points of a Seattle personal injury claim by reading the full article.

November 17, 2009

How to File a Seattle Personal Injury Lawsuit

In the large urban center of Seattle, neatly poised on the Puget Sound, all kinds of personal injury incidents happen every day. Seattle personal injury attorney Kirk Bernard understands that Washington residents impacted by an event commonly look for ways to pay their medical bills and get compensation for an incident in which they were a victim of preventable harm, whether it’s a workplace injury, a car accident or some other kind of event caused by another party—including an individual or local business.

To learn more about the legal matters surrounding filing a personal injury lawsuit, read the rest of the article here.

November 16, 2009

Lynnwood Worker Suffers Fatal Fall from 4-Story Building

According to a heraldnet.com article, a worker has died after falling four stories from a building in Lynnwood where he was installing carpet. Apparently, the accident took place around 10 a.m. on November 12, 2009 as the carpet installer fell out of a Holiday Inn Express window and landed on his head. Sadly, the man later died from his injuries after being transported to Harborview Medical Center in Seattle.

This fall accident is still being investigated to determine the exact cause of the incident and whether or not any safety regulations were violated. Similar fall accidents have been known to occur due to lack of fall protection, slippery surfaces, negligent actions of fellow employees, or other safety rules being forgotten or broken by employers.

If it is determined that the man’s employer, or a third party, is responsible for some form of negligence that contributed to the accident and the man’s subsequent death, then the deceased man’s family may seek compensation for loss of companionship, loss of past and future wages, funeral expenses, and medical bills.

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November 13, 2009

Kirk Bernard Discusses How Paralysis May Be Caused by Spinal Cord Injury

Ezines lately published an article by Seattle personal injury attorney, Kirk Bernard, which discusses how paralysis may be caused by spinal cord injury. The article begins by stating that the spinal cord is what actually transports and delivers impulses to various parts of the body (while the brain is responsible for producing these impulses). However, when the spinal cord is damaged, catastrophic consequences can result, and this includes paralysis. When such severe injuries are caused by another person’s negligent actions, an injured victim may be able to seek monetary compensation to assist them with years, if not a lifetime, of medical treatment, rehabilitation, and care.

Read the full article to find out more about the complexities of the spinal cord and the affects injury may have on this vital and fragile part of our bodies.

November 13, 2009

Former Richland Swimmer Hit by Car

A 22-year-old former Richland High School swimmer was hit by a car while crossing a Seattle street Wednesday night. It was reported that she sustained a serious head injury in the accident. She was in critical condition at Harborview Medical Center. The driver of the car was a 20-year-old man.

The 22-year-old was a swim champion, and was the first swimmer to make it onto the high school's Wall of Fame, said her prior swim coach.

"She was an amazing athlete," the coach said. "She was an extremely outgoing girl who loved life, every minute of it."

Our hearts certainly go out to this woman’s family and friends during this difficult time.

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November 11, 2009

Kirk Bernard's Survival Guide to Handling Foodborne Illness

A recent ArticleBase post by Kirk Bernard discusses the Seattle personal injury attorney’s survival guide to handling foodborne illness. Foodborne illness may result from product liability issues and forms of negligence, such as a food product being contaminated from poor handling during manufacturing or a food product containing E. coli bacteria or any other harmful substance. However, there are several precautions people can implement in their own homes to help prevent foodborne illness. The article addresses five main steps that you must take to keep you and your family safe from foodborne illness.

Learn more about how to protect yourself from foodborne illness by reading the entire article.

November 10, 2009

Two Women Killed As Car Crashes in Ravine in Bremerton

Two women, both in their 20s, died early Sunday morning when the car they were in veered off the roadway in Bremerton. The car then plunged down a ravine and slammed into an embankment.

The driver of the car, a 24-year-old man, survived the crash. He was airlifted to Harborview Medical Center in Seattle.

At approximately 12:50a.m. Sunday morning, medics and Kitsap County sheriff's deputies were called to the scene, at National Avenue South and McCall Boulevard West in the Navy Yard City area of Bremerton. According to investigators, the car was heading south on National Avenue when it left the roadway near McCall Boulevard.

The vehicle then launched off the roadway and plunged down into a ravine. There, it crashed into a dirt embankment, said a statement released by the Kitsap County Sheriff.

The two passengers were declared dead at the scene. According to Komonews.com, Sheriff’s deputies are still trying to determine the vehicle’s speed at the time of the accident. It is not yet known if drugs or alcohol were a factor in the crash.

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November 6, 2009

Kirk Bernard Reveals 9 Common Causes of Construction Accidents

Taking into account that there are multiple reasons why a construction accident may occur, a recent Ezines article by Kirk Bernard reveals the 9 most common causes of these often catastrophic incidents. In discussing the most frequently seen events that lead to a construction accident, Seattle personal injury attorney Kirk Bernard addresses how negligence leading to serious injuries on a construction site may involve misuse of equipment and tools, unsafe work areas, and failure to use protective gear.

The article is a means to help keep construction companies and workers aware of common accidents and injuries that they can avoid by maintaining a safe working environment and adhering to proper regulations and procedures. To learn more about the 9 most common causes of construction accidents and how they can be prevented, please refer to the full article.

November 4, 2009

South Kitsap Van Crash Injures Two

A single car crash, which resulted in serious injuries to a 47-year-old woman and her 27-year-old daughter, is being investigated by the Kitsap County Sheriff deputies. The accident occurred Saturday in South Kitsap.

Both victims are South Kitsap County residents. Both mother and daughter sustained skeletal fractures, internal injuries and lacerations. The mother, who was driving, was transported to St. Joseph’s Hospital in Tacoma. The daughter was airlifted to Harborview Medical Center in Seattle. No other passengers were in the van at the time of the crash.

The accident happened in the 8100 block of S.E. Southworth Drive, east of Yukon Harbor Road S.E., in the South Colby community of South Kitsap.

According to deputies, the van was driving eastbound on S.E. Southworth Drive when the driver failed to properly negotiate a curve to the left. The van went off the road and over the south shoulder into a ditch. There it hit a large culvert.

The force of the collision left both occupants trapped inside the van. In order to free them, South Kitsap Fire and Rescue firefighters used emergency rescue equipment.

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November 3, 2009

Kirk Bernard Shares the 4 Most Common Extraordinary Automobile Accidents Circumstances

Ezines recently published an article by Seattle auto accident lawyer, Kirk Bernard, called “4 Most Common Extraordinary Automobile Accidents Circumstances.” In addressing the 4 most frequently seen complications that may arise after an auto accident, Mr. Bernard discusses injured victims’ options for filing a claim when dealing with a leased vehicle, business vehicle, auto defects, and the seatbelt defense. Although auto accident litigation may be a rather simple kind of case, these 4 situations have been known to arise in which a person injured by another motorist’s negligence should be informed of their legal options.

Read the entire article to learn more about circumstances surrounding extraordinary automobile accidents in relation to what an injured victim may be able to do to obtain the compensation he or she deserves.