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Orlando Personal Injury And Workers' Compensation Law Blog

You do not have to fall far to suffer serious injuries

It's easy to understand why roofers experience a lot of danger on the job. If they're working 30 feet off the ground on a two-story house, a fall can be dramatic and deadly. For construction workers who may be hundreds of feet off of the ground, an uncontrolled fall may simply not be survivable. Anything over 50 feet is very likely to be deadly.

Does this mean that a shorter fall is safe? It does not. That's a risky stereotype to buy into, as it often leads people to underestimate the dangers that they face on the job.

Motorcycle deaths are far more common than in other car accidents

When you look at the raw statistics, motorcyclists die far less often in total than people in passenger cars. In 2017, for instance, around 5,000 motorcyclists lost their lives. In 2016, it was nearly 5,300. Considering that around 30,000 die annually in motor vehicle accidents, this makes motorcycles appear safer.

They're not. The difference is just that people ride them far less often. Reports actually show that fatal motorcycle accidents happen 28 times more often than fatal crashes involving people in passenger vehicles. That report focused the statistics by looking at the deaths per vehicle mile traveled.

Avoid these car insurance claim mistakes at all costs

A car accident has the potential to impact your life in many ways, ranging from a variety of serious injuries to financial losses. Adding to these challenges, you may come to find that your insurance company doesn't have your best interests in mind.

Here are several car insurance claim mistakes you need to avoid:

  • Accepting the first offer: Your car insurance company would love for you to accept a low-ball offer, as this gets them off the hook for less than what you can actually collect.
  • Providing a written or recorded statement: Before doing this, make sure you understand your policy and legal rights. You may also want to consult with a legal professional before making a statement on record.
  • Signing something you don't understand: For example, your agent may ask you to sign a waiver or release. Unfortunately, doing so could prohibit you from collecting the compensation you deserve.
  • Letting your insurance company push you around: You pay for your policy every month, so your insurer must live up to their end of the contract should you need to file a claim.

Distracted driving: Key facts

Do you ever feel like you see an endless string of distracted drivers? Every time you have to wait at a stoplight and honk your horn when it turns green, you know that driver ahead of you was on the phone. It never seems to end.

Part of the problem is that people really just do not realize how dangerous distraction can be. That's why they keep getting distracted and causing deadly accidents. To help raise awareness, here are a few key facts you need to be aware of:

  • It takes lives. A total of 3,166 people died in 2017 in accidents that people could prove were linked to distracted driving. The real total is probably far higher, as you can't always prove it.
  • The average length of texting distraction is five seconds. That's enough to cover 100 yards at 55 mph. You could cross a football field without looking.
  • It's not just texting. Other "nondriving activities" also lead to distraction and accidents. Examples include typing on the GPS and talking to passengers.
  • Parents have a massive impact on their kids. While teens get blamed for a lot of distracted driving -- and they are involved -- it is up to parents to set a good example, and show them how to drive safely. After all, people at any age cause distractions, accidents, injuries and deaths every year.

Should online retailers share liability for third-party products?

Product liability cases used to be simpler back when manufacturers sold directly (or nearly directly) to consumers. Liability rested with manufacturers, and there were few middlemen involved in the process.

That’s no longer the reality. As a recent lawsuit demonstrates, blame can be shared by multiple defendants, and it is not always clear what amount of liability each party should assume.

Trains and buses too often lack basic safety features

Here in Florida, motor coaches and other buses are a common sight – especially as vehicles to bring tourists to our theme parks and shuttle them around while they are here. And although they are not as widely used, trains are quickly growing in popularity as well. They are an important commuting tool for many workers and are an eco-friendly alternative to driving a personal vehicle.

Buses and trains are old modes of transportation that have benefitted greatly from comfort and efficiency upgrades. Unfortunately, the same cannot be said for safety improvements on these vehicles. As just one example, most buses and trains still lack seatbelts, which have been standard on cars/trucks and airplanes for more than a half-century.

Grocery stores test robots to prevent slip-and-fall accidents

When discussing the concept of “premises liability,” many lawyers use grocery store spills as an example because it is a hazard familiar to all of us. Broken jars, freshly mopped floors and vegetables that fall on the floor create the perfect conditions for slip-and-fall accidents. If grocery store employees fail to notice and or address the hazardous conditions, the store can be held liable for injuries suffered by customers.

It is perhaps fitting, then, that some grocery stores are turning to technology to solve what has been a persistent problem leading to accidents and liability. A news article from earlier this year notes that certain grocery chains in the U.S. and elsewhere are employing specialized robots to detect slip-and-fall hazards and alert employees while also staying out of the way of shoppers.

Tourists suffered serious injuries on Disney World tram

For two sets of tourists, the magic kingdom has lost some of its luster. According to the Orlando Sentinel, the Walt Disney World PeopleMover was involved in two separate crashes that left the occupants suffering from injuries.

The Tomorrowland Transit Authority PeopleMover is a tram that moves passengers through Tomorrowland. The ride lasts about 10 minutes, and the tram never goes faster than 7 mph.

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Wieland & DeLattre
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