Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Car Accidents Can Cause Serious Burns

When most people think of the injuries you can sustain in a car accident, they tend to think about things like broken bones, cuts and scrapes, and whiplash. It is important to remember that car accidents can also cause serious burn injuries when vehicles ignite or explode, and, in many cases, burn injuries1 sustained in vehicle wrecks are much more severe than other kinds of injuries.
Burns are Serious Injury that Require Intensive Medical Treatment
Burns are among the most painful type of injury that a person can sustain. When burns are severe enough to go through the skin, people can be left with disfiguring injuries and significant scarring that will last for the rest of their lives. In many cases, burn injury victims are hospitalized for an extended period of time and undergo multiple skin graft procedures in order to minimize scarring and promote healing.
How Do Burn Injuries Occur in Car Wrecks?
Not every car accident leads to burn injuries, as today’s vehicles tend to be well-made and are not prone to catching on fire or exploding. That being said, most vehicles on the road today are powered by gasoline, which is highly flammable and can explode under certain circumstances. When cars, trucks, and motorcycles collide with one another, it can lead to sparks and heat, both of which could cause a vehicle to catch fire.
Can People Who Sustain Burns in Car Accident Recover for their Injuries?
People who are burned in car accidents often experience significant pain and suffering, are unable to work for an extended period of time, have medical expenses, and have to deal with a wrecked vehicle on top of everything else. It should come as no surprise, then, that one of the first questions victims ask their attorney is whether they will be able to recover compensation for the losses they have sustained.
As is the case with other types of accidents, in order to recover, burn injury victims need to be able to establish that the accident that caused their injuries was caused by someone else’s legal negligence.2 There are a number of ways that the negligence of drivers or other parties could lead to a burn-causing motor vehicle accident. Some of the more common include the following:
-Distracted driving
-Defective vehicle design
-Defective vehicle manufacture
-Poorly loaded cargo
-Faulty seals on tanker trucks
-Hours-of-service violations
These are only a few of the ways that negligence could result in a serious wreck resulting in burns. It is important for anyone injured in an accident to have their case reviewed by an experienced attorney as soon as they can to find out whether they have a case.
Call the Dolman Law Group Today to Schedule a Free Consultation with a Clearwater Car Accident Lawyer
If you have been injured in a car accident, you should talk to a lawyer as soon as possible. The lawyers of the Dolman Law Group are skilled personal injury advocates who understand how important it is for victims to obtain justice through the legal system. We work tirelessly on behalf of our clients and are committed to obtaining the largest settlement or award in each case we handle. To schedule a free consultation with one of our Clearwater car accident attorneys, call our office today at 727-451-6900 or contact us online.
Dolman Law Group
800 North Belcher Road
Clearwater, FL 33765

Friday, January 13, 2017

Three Commonly Missed Signs of Nursing Home Neglect or Abuse

Nursing homes like Brookdale Senior Living claim that they will provide a safe environment for residents with caring staff who will provide proper care for your loved one. However, all too often, these facilities hire untrained staff who are often underpaid and fail to provide the care the residents need and deserve. In some cases, staff may intentionally mistreat residents and cause injuries.

As a family member of someone in a Brookdale facility or a similar nursing home, you should always watch for the signs of abuse or neglect. Some signs - such as physical injuries - may be more obvious than others. The following are some examples of commonly overlooked signs of nursing home abuse or neglect.

Malnourishment - As adults age, many of them become frailer and tend to lose weight. Because this is often considered to be “normal,” weight loss may not be recognized as a red flag that something is wrong. If your loved one has lost weight or shows other signs of possible malnutrition,1 you should always ask for an explanation for the weight loss. Otherwise, it could mean that your loved one is not getting enough to eat or not receiving the proper nutrition.

Over-medication - Most nursing home residents are on some type of medication and many are taking several types of medication on a daily basis. In some cases, staff members have been known to over-medicate residents either accidentally or intentionally to keep them sedated so they require less supervision. It can be difficult to keep track of the number of pills that your loved one should be taking, so you should look for the following common signs of over-medication:

  • Slurred speech
  • Difficulty focusing
  • Abdominal pain
  • Rashes or flushed skin
  • Lack of motor skills
  • Lack of emotion
  • Mood changes
  • Weight loss or gain

Depression - Many of us consider nursing homes to be relatively quiet and with a somber mood. However, residents of many assisted living facilities and nursing homes are in good spirits and are encouraged to thrive in their later years. If your loved one seems to be depressed, their depression2 could be caused by mistreatment. If residents are isolated, neglected, or abused, their moods can be severely affected. Any non-abuse related depression should also be properly treated. If your loved one is depressed, you should bring it to the attention of doctors and should watch out for other signs of potential abuse or mistreatment.

Contact a Clearwater Nursing Home Abuse and Neglect Attorney Today

As soon as you notice any type of sign that your loved one may have been mistreated in any way, you should first ensure they are safe and report the neglect or abuse to the proper authorities. You should also know that your injured loved one has the right to hold the nursing home accountable for the harm they suffered. The Clearwater nursing home injury lawyers at Dolman Law Group are here to help you hold facilities like Brookdale liable for their actions, so please call for a free consultation at 727-451-6900 today.

Tuesday, January 10, 2017

What Causes Commercial Trucks to Roll Over?

Truck rollover accidents can be catastrophic and can lead to very serious personal injuries. Due to a semi- or tractor trailer’s large size and shape, it is no match for smaller vehicles on the roadway. Prior to overturning, tractor trailers can also swing across the roadway, impacting everything in their path. For this reason, rollover accidents often cause extremely widespread damage and severely anyone unlucky enough to be in the vehicle path.
The Science Behind Truck Rollover Accidents
According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA),1 centrifugal forces cause a truck to “lean away” from the curve it’s negotiating, while at the same time, the truck is top-heavy and is supporting a potentially unstable load. This combination is dangerous and can lead to a truck rollover and subsequent collision with other vehicles on the roadway. In addition, the fact that semi-trucks’ trailers have significant surface area makes them extremely susceptible to being overturned by strong gusts of wind that occur perpendicularly to the direction in which the truck is moving.
Improper Loading Procedures
One of the main causes of truck rollover accidents is improper loading procedures. Both truck drivers and shipping companies are responsible for ensuring that cargo is loaded onto trucks in accordance with the proper trucking regulations. This includes taking measures to ensure that the load is properly secured on the trailer.
When it comes to improper loading procedures, the cargo itself can pose as hazard, as it could roll off and impact other vehicles on the roadway or lead to a chemical spill or fire. When this occurs, victims are generally entitled to compensation, as these types of incidents usually do not occur in the absence of negligence.
Improper Truck Maintenance
Proper truck maintenance requires that drivers utilize checklists and regularly inspect the trucks they drive. Good inspections should reveal common defects, such as worn brakes and low tire pressures, which often lead to rollovers and other trucking accidents. Failing to properly maintain and inspect the tractors and trailers can have catastrophic results.
Truck Driver’s Behavior
Another common cause of truck rollover accidents is reckless, careless, or negligent driving on the part of a truck driver. This typically involves one or more of the following:
• braking or accelerating too quickly
• speeding
• fatigue
• not driving properly for the weather conditions
• distracted driving (e.g., calling or texting while driving

In addition, issues like noncompliance with federal hours-of-service regulations or impaired driving could result in serious accident. It is important to always have the circumstances of a truck accident case carefully reviewed by an attorney, as negligence is not always apparent to the untrained eye.

Contact a Clearwater Truck Accident Attorney Today to Discuss Your Case
Truck rollover accidents can have serious consequences. If you or someone you love has been injured in a trucking accident, Florida law2 may entitle you to significant compensation for the losses you have sustained, including your medical expenses, lost income, loss of quality of life, and physical and emotional pain and suffering.
To schedule a free consultation with a Clearwater truck accident lawyer, call the Dolman Law Group today at 727-451-6900 or send us an email through our online contact form.
Dolman Law Group
800 North Belcher Road
Clearwater, FL 33765

Friday, January 6, 2017

Have You Been in a Bicycle Accident?

Many people choose to ride bikes to get around town for many reasons - to avoid traffic, to save money, to make parking significantly easier, and to help the environment. Others ride bicycles for exercise and recreation. Whatever the reason, biking can have many different benefits. Unfortunately, biking also creates the risk of extremely serious accidents and injuries.

Drivers are expected to share the road with bicyclists and when they do not, they should be held fully responsible for any injuries they cause in collisions.

A Bicycle Accident can Change Your Life

Bicyclists do not have airbags, seat belts, bumpers, or a protective frame around them as motor vehicle passengers do. When a car crashes into a bicyclist, the will feel the full force of the impact directly on their body. Often, bicyclists can get thrown from their bikes, which can result in several different impacts with the vehicle, the ground, or nearby objects. For these reasons, the injuries sustained in a bike accident are often severe.

Some common injuries suffered by bicyclists include:

  • Traumatic brain injury
  • Skull fractures1
  • Jaw and facial fractures
  • Shattered wrists and arms
  • Crushed limbs
  • Spinal cord injury
  • Broken pelvis
  • Broken ribs
  • Internal injuries

Many bicycle accident victims require emergency trauma care, time spent in the hospital, multiple surgeries, a lengthy course of rehabilitative therapy, and more. People who suffer long-term or permanent impairments may require home health care or assisted living. The costs of treating these devastating injuries can easily reach toward $1 million or more.

While you are receiving treatment and recovering from your injuries, you will likely have to miss a substantial amount of work, which means you also miss out on income. If your injury caused permanent disabilities, you may never be able to return to work again and may have to rely on disability benefit and other alternative forms of income. For these reasons and more, obtaining full compensation for your losses is critical to being able to cover your basic expenses and bills.

How a Bike Accident Lawyer Can Help You

Bicycle accident cases can be complex and it is essential to have an attorney on your side who has experience with this particular type of case. Our bike accident lawyers can help you in the following ways and more:

  • Determine who should be held responsible for your collision
  • Identify the negligence2 that caused your accident
  • Gather evidence to support claims of negligence
  • Obtain an adequate payout from an insurance company whenever possible
  • File a legal claim against any negligent parties when needed
  • Help with every step of the legal process until you receive the full amount of compensation you deserve for your injuries and losses.

Call for a Free Consultation with Our Clearwater Bike Accident Attorneys

The dedicated team of Florida bicycle accident attorneys at the Dolman Law Group has extensive experience helping cyclist accident victims following devastating crashes. We know how to provide the assistance you need in this difficult time so that you can remain focused on your physical health and recovery. Please call our office at 727-451-6900 to discuss your case for free today.

Dolman Law Group
800 North Belcher Road
Clearwater, FL 33765



Tuesday, January 3, 2017

How Effective are Bicycle Helmets at Preventing Injury?

More people are using bicycles in cities and metropolitan areas than ever. It makes sense – why spend $25-50 a day in parking fees and spend 45 minutes trying to find a parking spot when one can bike to work in 10 minutes and not pay any fees? This point is further reinforced by the surge of bike share businesses. However, with an increase of bicyclists sharing the road with motorists necessarily comes an increase in the potential for bicycle-related accidents.

People who are injured in bicycle accidents are often legally entitled to compensation. Importantly, this is often true even when they were partially at fault for an accident – so, if your accident occurred after you veered out of a bike lane or rolled through a stop sign, do not make the mistake of simply assuming that you will not be able to recover for your losses. Every bicycle accident victims should have their case reviewed by an attorney prior to signing a settlement agreement or agreeing to concede liability.

Bicycle Injuries in the US

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHSTA) has estimated1 that approximately 818 bicyclists died on US roads in 2015, a 12.2% increase and the highest number since 1995. The NHSTA has also reported that 88% of bicyclist deaths were people who were aged 20 and older. The deaths of bicyclists aged 20 or older have tripled since 1975.

The Effectiveness of Helmets
Bicyclists should always wear a helmet when riding in cities or areas where there may be obstructions. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) has indicated2 that the odds of head injury can be reduced by as much as 50% when wearing a helmet. Wearing a helmet can also face or neck injury can also be reduced by as much as 33% according to IIHS. Although helmets may prevent serious injury in low-speed accidents, they do not do much when a bicyclist is sent flying off of their bike or tumbling down a steep hill.

Potential Injuries With or Without a Helmet

Unlike motorists, bicyclists are not protected by things like airbags and steel when involved in a collision. Often times bicyclists are sent flying off of their bikes and collide with pavements or vehicles. Examples of serious injuries include:

-Head trauma or skull fracture
-Broken neck
-Face scrapes or severe lacerations
-Broken nose or jaw
-Brain hemorrhage

These and other bicycle accident injuries have the potential to leave victims with injuries that require emergency medical treatment and keep them out of work for weeks or months. In particularly serious cases, victims may develop disabilities that will affect them for the rest of their lives, making it critical for them to recover for their past, current, and future losses.

Calculating Damages in a Bicycle Accident Case Can be Complicated

Of course, determining how a serious injury will affect you in the future can be difficult and require speculation. As a result, in many cases involving injuries with long-term or permanent effects, it is necessary to use experts in order to determine the costs of ongoing medical care and the amount of income a person would have been able to earn over the course of his or her career had it not been for the accident. These kinds of experts can often be extremely expensive, putting them out of reach for many victims. Fortunately, when you retain an attorney, the firm (or the attorney) will cover these up-front costs on your behalf, maximizing your chances of obtaining the compensation to which you are entitled.

Call the Dolman Law Group to Speak with an Experienced Clearwater Personal Injury Attorney Today

Although helmets can help prevent injuries, they are not guaranteed to prevent all harm from occurring. If you have been injured as a result of an accident while riding a bicycle, call the experienced Clearwater injury lawyers of the Dolman Law Group at 727-451-6900 today to discuss your situation.

Dolman Law Group
800 North Belcher Road
Clearwater, FL 33765

Friday, December 30, 2016

If You’re Injured in a Florida Accident, Are you Liable for not Wearing a Motorcycle Helmet?

For those who ride with the wind, especially the warm winds of Florida weather, sometimes you need to feel the breeze in your hair. And if you meet certain conditions, under Florida law, you can, since motorcycle helmets are not always required.
Florida Motorcycle Equipment Law

Florida Law1 permits a person over the age of 21 to operate or ride a motorcycle without a helmet if he or she carries at least $10,000 in personal injury insurance to cover injuries that may occur as the result of a crash. In fact, the majority of states grant riders over a certain age the same choice, but according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA),2 in those states with mandatory helmet laws, nearly 100 percent of riders comply with the law, but in states without mandatory helmet laws, only 50 percent of riders chose to wear a helmet.[1] This begs the question, if you suffer a severe head injury that could have been prevented or mitigated had you been wearing a helmet, how should courts determine liability after a motorcycle crash?
Injuries Resulting from Motorcycle Accidents

The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports2 that traumatic brain injury contributes to approximately one-third of all injury-related deaths in the United States. Unfortunately, failure to wear an approved motorcycle helmet can contribute to the following life threatening injuries:

-Coup-Contrecoup, when the force of impact causes the brain to move within the skull;
-Tearing of the brain’s nerve tissue;
-Neck and spinal injuries, which may cause paralysis.

Brain injuries can be difficult to treat and leave you with life threatening injuries or permanent disabilities; however, can you be liable for your own medical expenses if you were operating your motorcycle safely at the time of the accident?
Florida Injury Mitigation Laws

Florida itself is a “comparative fault state,” meaning that even if you are the injured party, you may be held partially “at fault” for causing your own injures. Even though Florida law no longer requires riders to wear a helmet, this will not insulate you from liability. For example, a Florida jury can find that by not wearing a helmet, you were responsible for 40 percent of your injuries. This would cause a reduction in the total value of your case by 40 percent. Often such legal determinations require expert medical testimony, which can drastically increase the cost of litigation.
Contact a Qualified Florida Motorcycle Attorney to Discuss your Legal Options

Avid motorcyclists often make calculated choices not to wear a motorcycle helmet, as some believe it may increase the chance of spinal injuries. However, if you have suffered head trauma in a motorcycle accident, either the defendant or your insurance company may argue that you must bear a substantial portion of your medical expenses and damages. The Dolman Law Group is your go-to motorcycle accident firm in Clearwater, Florida. With experience handling catastrophic injuries, they understand the medical complexities necessary to advocate on behalf of your rights as a rider. Call 727-451-6900 today for a no-risk consultation.