Articles Posted in Injuries to Children

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As the holidays approach, the demand for new toys will be high, both in stores and online. Buyers must be cautious when purchasing items to make sure they are following the manufacturer’s age recommendations and that they stay tuned to any reports of injuries or news of a potential toy recall.injury lawyer

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) recently issued its annual Toy-Related Deaths and Injuries report for 2016, revealing that last year, there were a total of 240,000 emergency department trips spurred by dangerous or defective toys. That doesn’t represent a significant statistical trend

While not every toy-related injury is cause for a personal injury lawsuit, if plaintiff can show the product was unreasonably dangerous or defectively designed or defectively manufactured, there may be grounds for legal action. Serious injuries can occur when toys are made cheaply, with toxic materials or sold with inadequate warnings. Defendants in these cases can include anyone in the chain of distribution – from the product designer to its manufacturer to its distributor. Continue reading →

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In Florida, property owners are generally liable for dangerous conditions that are not obvious and cause harm to those who are lawfully present. There are varying degrees of a property owner’s responsibility in this area of law – known as premises liability – depending on the status of the individual who was hurt. For example, someone who is invited onto the property for the financial benefit of the property owner is owed a higher duty of care than someone who is trespassing. child injury lawyer

In most cases, trespassers are not owed any duty of care, except that property owners can’t intentionally harm them or set traps. When it comes to children, though, the standards are different. Children are generally owed a greater duty of care than adults in the same situation, and this is true also when children are trespassing. The doctrine of attractive nuisance, for example, holds that if property owners maintain dangerous conditions likely to attract young children to the site, the property owner must be sensitive to that potential danger (which a child may not appreciate) by posting a warning or taking some other affirmative steps to protect children from that danger.

Recently in Minnesota, the state supreme court there considered property owner liability in the case where a 4-year-old boy nearly drowned in the Mississippi River and suffered severe and permanent brain damage.  Continue reading →

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Summer is on the horizon, which means many families will have more free time to explore the outdoors, taking advantage of Florida’s many parks, campgrounds and beaches. camping

However, there is something important visitors – including locals and tourists – need to understand about the risk they are assuming when venturing onto these sites for recreation. Florida’s recreational use statute, F.S. 375.251, limits liability of property owners who make public certain areas for recreational use without charging them. The purpose is to encourage those who own land, water and park areas to make those sites available to the public for outdoor recreation by limiting the owners’ liability for persons injured on those sites.

Essentially, visitors to these sites can’t make the presumption that any of these recreational areas are safe for any purpose. The property owner doesn’t owe a duty of care to the people who go to that area, and he or she won’t be liable or responsible for any injuries to people who visit the site. The only real exception to this is liability for deliberate, willful or malicious injury to persons on the property – and that is a difficult assertion to make.  Continue reading →

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A school bus accident in Naples recently resulted in injuries to two students, and the driver of the bus has been found at-fault. school bus

WINK News reports the crash happened one Monday morning as students were being transported to Lely High School. The Florida Highway Patrol initiated an investigation after the students were transported to a local hospital. Authorities have characterized student injuries as minor, but it’s worth noting not all injuries are apparent immediately after a collision.

The 61-year-old driver of the bus was cited for failure to yield the right-of-way at U.S. 41 and Broward Street. The bus was turning left and did so directly into the path of a 20-year-old motorist operating a Jeep Cherokee. That driver was seriously injured and was transported to Lee Memorial Hospital. Although both drivers had a green light, the bus driver was at-fault for making a left turn into oncoming traffic. Continue reading →

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It’s been four years since a 14-year-old was run over by a county bus in South Florida, resulting in serious and debilitating injuries that affect the young man to this day. Although he survived the month-long medical induced coma, traumatic brain injury and various internal injuries, his life, doctors say, is never going to be the same. bus

Now, according to The Sun Sentinel, his family has secured an $850,000 settlement from the county. However, only $300,000 of this is available immediately under a Florida statute that limits how much a government agency can be compelled to pay for personal injury in any one case. That won’t even cover half the $640,000 in medical bills he’s accrued up to this date. The remaining $550,000 will have to be secured in a claims bill, which has already been filed (SB 314). That could take some time, though hopefully will be expedited by the fact the county has agreed not to fight the bill, which the legislature will have to approve. No companion bill in the state House has yet been filed.

The mass transit system in Broward County, where this incident occurred, has come under particular scrutiny as a Sentinel investigation uncovered numerous cases in which drivers with multiple preventable bus accidents – some resulting in serious personal injury – were still allowed to continue driving. The policy, which is being revisited by the county’s commission, holds that drivers must have at least five preventable accidents over a rolling 24-month time frame before they can even be considered for termination.  Continue reading →

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Three children became violently ill after visiting a petting zoo at a pumpkin farm in Minnesota. Now, one of those children has been awarded $7.5 million after her family sued the company. The exposure she suffered to the deadly E. coli bacteria resulted in her spending nearly a month battling a potentially fatal kidney disease. The young girl’s kidneys shut down. She required surgery and near-constant dialysis.pettingzoo

Jurors in the Minnesota District Court ruled owners of the farm were negligent in preventing their animals from transmitting that sickness and others to young patrons. The majority of the money awarded was allocated for future medical bills and pain and suffering. Her injury lawyer noted it is one of the largest verdicts nationally for an E. coli outbreak, and the biggest to date involving a petting zoo. As he noted in speaking to reporters with FOX9 news station, it’s not that the individuals running the farm were mean or wanted to hurt children. In fact, he called them, “decent people.” However, they failed to educate themselves on the risks of allowing farm animals to come into contact with small children without proper sanitation precautions.

Today, defendant pumpkin patch no longer operates a petting zoo. But the bigger concern is the lack of regulatory oversight on similar operations. Continue reading →

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An elementary school student’s mother has filed a lawsuit against a Connecticut school district, alleging that last school year, her 5-year-old daughter was seriously and permanently injured in a playground fall. playgroundswings

The child was running from the playground to the school building when she fell, hitting her stomach on the sharp edge of a concrete step. Despite the girl complaining of severe abdominal pain, the school didn’t contact anyone for medical assistance, nor did they call the girl’s mother. The girl told her teacher she had begun to feel worse after returning to class. Then, she developed a fever and began vomiting. By then, four hours had passed. Finally, the teacher contacted a nurse.

The girl was rushed to the hospital, where she ultimately lost one of her kidneys, an injury her mother has characterized as not only permanent, but disabling. The family has spent enormous sums of money on hospital bills, medical care and physical therapy, according to the personal injury lawsuit.  Continue reading →

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A school district in California agreed to pay $10.5 million to a former student who suffered a brain injury after he was violently mobbed by classmates while dressed in a mock mascot uniform of the rival team.The traumatic brain injury occurred after the student begged school administrators to let him take the chicken suit off after he’d suffered an initial beating while wearing it. School officials, however, coerced him to go back out with it.football2

In Carter v. Kern High School District, the 24-year-old plaintiff, just 17 at the time of the 2010 attack, asserted he wore the chicken suit to the pep rally to make fun of the rival team. When he first did so, he was attacked by two students. He went to the school activities director, who forced him to continue wearing it by threatening him with having to pay the $75 rental fee if he refused to keep it on. He did as he was told.

However, during the rally, a number of students – including several of the school football players – dog piled up on top of him. He was hit, kicked and punched. It was supposed to be a “mock fight,” so officials never stepped in to intervene. After suffering a traumatic brain injury, plaintiff had to spend six months in a brain injury treatment center. He lost out on his senior year of high school. His classmates surpassed him in heading off to college. He continues to suffer the effects of the brain injury. His medical costs are expected to reach more than $5 million in the course of his life. The attack reportedly also damaged his pituitary gland, and he will be required to take growth hormones for the rest of his life. He also reportedly will require special education classes and ongoing therapy. Continue reading →

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The family of a 7-year-old girl is reeling from an unfathomable loss after she was struck and killed by an alleged distracted driver in front of her Fort Myers home. childhand

It happened near her father’s house on Jupiter Road, where she was riding her tricycle.

The suspect, a 27-year-old man also from Fort Myers, was reportedly driving his work van, which belongs to a local roofing company. Witnesses told Lee County Sheriff’s deputies the driver, a relative of the girl, was distracted and waving to family members when he struck the girl. Authorities later discovered an open container of alcohol inside the work van, but investigators do not believe the driver was under the influence of alcohol or drugs at the time of the crash. However, he did not have a license.  Continue reading →

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When a baby is born with a serious birth defect, families often face numerous challenges. Depending on the problem, the child may require surgery, medication, therapy or other treatments that could last a lifetime.gasoline

The majority of birth defects are genetic and probably unavoidable. However, there are some caused by someone’s negligence either during the mother’s pregnancy or in the course of the birthing process. Usually, that means liability on the part of the doctor, nurse or some other health care professional.

However, there may be instances when exposure to certain products is the culprit. In those instances, it may be possible to pursue legal action against the manufacturer or distributors of those products. Continue reading →