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Thursday, December 17, 2015

Dallas Car Accident Lawyers


2 children dead in car crash with an SUV
Two children were killed in a car wreck in South Dallas recently, after the family’s vehicle was hit by an SUV. Reports say that the SUV was traveling at approximately 100 mph on a rain soaked highway when the crash occurred. With inclement weather upon us, it is even more important to drive safe this holiday season.

Call Miller Weisbrod at 888.987.0005 for help after a motor vehicle accident injury. We work diligently to protect our clients' rights and advocate their interests in cases where serious or catastrophic injury or death has resulted from any kind of motor vehicle accident.

The Dangers of Speeding in Inclement Weather
Weather events like heavy precipitation can impact the capabilities of drivers as well as the performance of vehicles while on the road. According to information from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, an estimated 480,000 people are injured and more than 6,000 are killed each year in traffic accidents that occur in adverse weather. A majority of weather-related crashes are said to occur during rainfall and on wet ground.

Even attempting to drive the posted speed limit on wet roads isn’t always a safe choice because the slick surface may pose problems in the event that a driver has to brake suddenly. The slower a vehicle is traveling, the easier it is for the driver to maintain control throughout their commute; therefore, it is important to drive at a controllable speed in rainy weather.

Drivers should take the following considerations when traveling in inclement weather:
•   It takes longer to brake when driving on roads that are slippery:
Tires perform differently on slippery road surfaces than dry ones because the wet road can affect their traction.

•   Not ensuring that one’s vehicle is prepared for driving in certain weather conditions is risky: Making sure tires are properly inflated, windshield wipers are functioning properly, and other vehicle components are in working order is important for reducing the risk of an accident in bad weather.

•   Unnecessary lane changes on slippery roads can be hazardous:
Changing lanes and trying to pass others must be done with extreme caution when driving in rainy weather because it can be difficult to see what’s ahead from certain distances to determine whether one is placing themselves in harm’s way.

•   Driving distractions are especially dangerous in inclement weather:
Cell phone use and other dangerous driving distractions are particularly risky when bad weather is present. Because factors such as rain can obstruct one’s view of what is ahead, not paying attention to the road for even a second can result in serious consequences.

•   There are steps that can be taken to prevent hydroplaning:
 Hydroplaning can happen when a vehicle is traveling on a slick surface. Drivers can reduce their chance of hydroplaning; however, by taking steps such as avoiding standing water puddles when possible, making sure tires are properly inflated, and ensuring that their speed matches the weather condition they are in.

•   Rules for commercial vehicles:
 The Texas Commercial Vehicle License Manual recommends that drivers of 18-wheelers reduce their speed by at least 1/3 in wet weather conditions.  This is due to the proclivity of tractor-trailers to jack knife (especially when lightly loaded or unloaded) as well as the increased stopping distance of these heavy duty trucks.

Those who are injured in a traffic accident caused by the negligent actions of another driver in bad weather conditions can contact the lawyers of Miller Weisbrod about their legal options. We offer sound legal advice, experienced representation and dedicated advocacy to victims of auto defects and their families.

For more information, we invite you to contact our offices in Dallas at 214.987.0005 to schedule a free initial consultation with our experienced personal injury trial lawyers. If you are calling from outside the DFW Metroplex, please call us toll free at 888.987.0005. You may also contact us by e-mail now for prompt attention or to request an appointment.

Friday, December 11, 2015

Harbor Freight Recalls Drillmaster 18-volt Cordless Drills

Harbor Freight Tools, of Camarillo, California, is recalling 1.7 million Drill Master 18-Volt cordless drills because an internal switching mechanism can become stuck in the “ON” position and overheat, posing fire and burn hazards.

Harbor Freight Tools has received 25 reports of the drill switch overheating, including six reports of burns to the hands and fingers, and five reports of minor property damage. They were sold at Harbor Freight Tools stores nationwide, in the company catalog, and online at www.harborfreight.com between May 2011 and September 2015 for about $35 for item number 68239 and $46 for item number 68287.

68239
68287





The drills are black with a red switch and were sold with an 18 volt rechargeable battery pack. Item number 68239 was sold individually and item number 68287 was sold as part of a kit, which included a flashlight. The flashlight is not included in the recall.

Consumers should immediately stop using the recalled drills and return the unit to the nearest Harbor Freight Tools store to receive a replacement. Or contact Harbor Freight Tools at 800-444-3353 from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. PT Monday through Friday, or online at www.harborfreight.com. Consumers can also email Harbor Freight Tools at recalls@harborfreight.com.

As consumers in the United States, when we purchase a product and bring it home, it is reasonable to expect the product will perform as intended and do us no harm.

Due to less stringent trade policies, the safety of products in this country has been compromised in many cases. A defect in design or manufacturing or a lack of warning in regards to possible dangers can be viewed as product liability and brought to court.

Product liability laws vary from state to state but generally favor the consumer. Manufacturers place warning labels on packages in an attempt to reduce the amount of liability the company may assume.

Strict liability defects are categorized as three types:
Manufacturing Defect – This applies to a product that was well designed but manufactured in a way that makes it unsafe. It could be a result of using substandard material, faulty or unspecified parts.

Design Defect – The general overall design was unsafe leading to an entire line of unsafe products. This can be the product itself or the packaging. For example, a sharp blade not protected within the package causing injury when being opened.

Insufficient Warnings – The product may be free of any defects or design flaws but there were incomplete or nonexistent operating instructions or warnings to alert the consumer of possible hazards.

The courts have generally seen strict liability as something worked into the cost of a product, which is factored in by manufacturers, suppliers and retailers. All of these entities can be the responsible party in a product liability case.

The types of damages that may be awarded in product liability cases may include compensatory damages for:
Medical Bills – Medical bills both past and future including the emergency room, hospital stays, medical specialists, transportation to and from medical facilities, rehabilitation and physical therapy

Property Damage – Any damage caused by a product to personal property

Loss of Income – Lost time at work, inability to perform ones occupation, retraining for a new occupation, loss of lifetime income for being forced into a lower paying occupation

The Foundation for a Solid Product Liability Case
The manufacturer, supplier, and retailer may each be responsible for the injury caused by a particular product. If a manufacturer warns the supplier and, in turn, the supplier warns the retailer and the warnings are ignored, your product liability lawyer may decide to hold all three responsible for your injury or property damage.

To be successful in a product liability case you must present your attorney with the product, proof of where it was purchased and any instructions and directions that were included with the product.

In addition, you should have a record of all medical attention you received, property damage receipts as well as any details describing when, where, and how the accident occurred. Also the names and contact information of any witnesses.

Miller Weisbrod, LLP is a personal injury law firm with extensive experience in product liability. Call (214) 987-0005 today for a free case evaluation.

Tuesday, December 8, 2015

Miller Weisbrod obtains $5,500,00.00 Settlement

Clay Miller, partner in Miller Weisbrod, obtained a $5,500,000 settlement for his client Jose Luna for injuries sustained in a construction accident. Mr. Luna was paralyzed when he fell in a hole that was concealed by an unmarked and unsecured cover while working on a roof of a day care that was being constructed in Plano, Texas.
Miller brought suit against the General Contractor (Journeyman) and the subcontractor (Fox) that had initially created the hole and placed the cover. The hole was part of the original plans of the project and was intended to be a roof hatch once the building was complete.

On December 18, 2013, Jose Luna was walking across the roof of the building to obtain some plywood for a wall he was building.
He felt his foot make contact with something and then the sensation of falling. Upon impact with the floor one story below, Luna’s spinal cord suffered a severe injury leaving him paralyzed from the waist down. The General Contractor attempted to place blame on the subcontractor that had installed the hole cover. Through discovery it was determined that the hole cover had been installed and secured but not marked as required by OSHA.
OSHA safety regulations require that hole covers be both marked and secured. OSHA 1926.502(i)
Through progress photos it was determined that the hole cover had been unsecured approximately one month before Luna’s fall and after the area was released by the subcontractor to the General. Through deposition questioning, the job superintendent admitted that the hole cover had been unsecured under his orders to take measurements of the hatch hole. This was a different story than he had told his company safety director post-accident—he tried to blame the incident on the subcontractor and Luna’s employer. During a trial cross-examination (because he was out of trial subpoena range) weeks before the start of trial, the job superintendent admitted the following:



A settlement was reached with the subcontractor the Friday before trial for $500,000. The insurance carrier for the General Contractor was stuck at $3,000,000 up until the morning of trial. As the Court was beginning to hear Motions in Limine and just before jury selection, the carrier (facing a noon deadline) increased its offer by $2,000,000 allowing the entire case to settle for $5,500,000. With this settlement, Luna’s life care plan can be fully funded with a structured settlement and upfront cash payment.

Over the last twenty plus years, Clay Miller has partnered with law firms across the state of Texas on a referral and joint venture basis to pursue cases of catastrophic injury and wrongful death arising from construction and work site incidents. Miller Weisbrod would welcome the opportunity to work with you to obtain justice for your clients injured or killed on the job.
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Miller Weisbrod, LLP is a national law firm specializing in catastrophic injury and wrongful death cases. Partners Clay Miller and Les Weisbrod have built the firm’s reputation with successful verdicts, settlements, appeals and favorable decisions across the country. With resources and finances available to take on the powerful interests that have caused harm, the firm is committed to providing quality representation for clients who are seriously injured and families of victims who are killed as a result of the negligence or misconduct of others. Miller Weisbrod has offices in Dallas and affiliate offices in Houston and Austin. For more information call (888) 987-0005 or visit www.millerweisbrod.com.

Friday, December 4, 2015

Medical Diagnostic Errors are Harming Patients


Medical Diagnostic Errors are Harming Patients
Receiving the correct diagnosis is critical of any patient's medical care. When physicians and other health care providers fail to make accurate and timely diagnoses, they place their patients at risk of serious harm.

The Institute of Medicine (IOM) issued a report identifying diagnostic errors as a persistent and pervasive problem.  The report, Improving Diagnosis in Health Care, characterized such errors as a decades-long "blind spot" within the U.S. health care system that "continues to harm an unacceptable number of patients." Each year one out of 20 adults receiving outpatient care in the U.S. experiences a diagnostic error.

Defining diagnostic errors
According to the IOM report, a diagnostic error involves any of the following three circumstances:

• An inaccurate diagnosis
• An untimely diagnosis
• A failure to communicate a diagnosis to the patient

An inaccurate diagnosis is the easiest type of diagnostic error. One example would be diagnosing a patient’s abdominal pain as a stomach ulcer when they actually have pancreatic cancer.

A diagnosis is untimely when it is meaningfully delayed. These errors can be difficult to identify because the definition of timeliness depends on context. For example, if a patient goes to the emergency room complaining of acute chest pain and shortness of breath, reaching an accurate diagnosis within minutes or hours would be considered timely. For other circumstances, making a diagnosis in weeks or months may be considered timely.

Finally, an accurate and timely diagnosis cannot benefit a patient unless it is effectively communicated to the patient. Without accurate, complete information, the patient is unable to consider and pursue appropriate treatment options.

Possible harms
The authors of the IOM report conducted a comprehensive review of the scientific literature in an attempt to understand the frequency, severity and impact of diagnostic errors. They found that the problem is both widespread and long-standing, as evidenced by the following statistics highlighted in the IOM report:

• 5% of U.S. adults who seek outpatient care each year experience a diagnostic error
• Diagnostic errors contribute to approximately 10% of patient deaths
• Diagnostic errors account for 6% to 17% of hospital adverse events
• Diagnostic errors are the leading type of paid medical malpractice claims, and are twice as likely to have resulted in the patient’s death

Diagnostic errors can cause serious physical harm, including death, through two basic pathways:

• A delay in appropriate treatment for a serious disease, or by provision of unnecessary, harmful treatments.

Example:
Consider a patient complaining of chest pain who is diagnosed with heartburn but actually is having a heart attack. The patient could die if he is sent home with antacids, instead of being given lifesaving treatments to open a blocked coronary artery.

Conversely, if a patient has chest pain due to heartburn, but is misdiagnosed with a heart attack, he may suffer complications while undergoing unnecessary invasive cardiac procedures.

• Diagnostic errors also may cause psychological harm.

Example:
A patient misdiagnosed with lung cancer when she actually has a benign lung problem could experience significant unnecessary anxiety about the serious side effects of proposed treatments, end-of-life care and her family's well-being in the face of her illness.

Diagnostic errors can lead to financial harm because of the costs resulting from unnecessary treatments and related complications.

If you or a loved one has suffered personal injury or death due to medical negligence, the attorneys of Miller Weisbrod are ready to assist you. We offer honest answers, straightforward legal advice, and caring support throughout the legal process, bringing our collective experience and in-depth medical knowledge to every case.

For an assessment of your case and your legal options in seeking financial compensation, we invite you to call Miller Weisbrod, LLP, in Dallas at 214.987.0005 or toll free at 888.987.0005 for a free consultation. You may also contact us by e-mail.