Posts by Erica

Scaffolding Collapse: The Cause of many Accidents in Construction Sites

Posted by on Aug 2, 2017 in Personal Injury

The U.S. Department of Labor knows how risky working in a construction site can be. All the sharp and heavy tools and machinery, hazardous substances, greasy and dusty surroundings, electrical wires extending from one working area to another, jobs that need to be done on top of stairs, ladders or scaffolds, uneven floors, and so forth; any of these can cause accidents and injuries which may end either a worker’s career or life. According to the U.S. Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics, the number of work-related accidents and illnesses are also always higher in construction sites than in any other type of working environment, and that the identified top four causes of injuries are electrocution, getting caught-in-between, being struck (by a construction equipment or vehicle, or by a falling object), and falls, especially elevated falls.

All types of working environments should be kept healthy and safe for all workers/employees. This duty of ensuring safety and health in the workplace is placed by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) under the care of employers. Due to this, employers should make sure that they hire only qualified employees, that all employees are trained on how to keep their workplace safe, are knowledgeable about the use/operation of dangerous tools and hazardous substances, that standard safety equipment can be found in designated places, that employees are provided with safety gears, and that these gears are always worn in work areas.

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) is the branch of the federal government that enforces the healthy and safe workplace rule. It also sets standards on the proper use construction equipment and tools to ensure the safety of workers in general. One example of these standards is the 1971 regulation on the requirements regarding the use of scaffolds.

Scaffolds are provisional work platforms used in construction work. These provide support for the workers and the materials they use. Some scaffolds are self-supporting, meaning these are firmly supported by poles or frames solidly positioned on the ground; others are called “suspension” scaffolds since these are supported by pulleys and ropes from overhead. Whether built from the ground or suspended from overhead, the greatest danger facing workers is scaffolding collapse, a consequence of scaffolds not properly assembled or if the number of workers and the weight of materials on the scaffold are too much for it to support. For added worker support, OSHA also requires the incorporation of guardrails to which workers can hold onto in cases of slips.

Despite the rules, training on safety, and personal duty to observe safety measures, accidents still occur, often with debilitating effects on the worker. If a scaffold collapses due to the incompetence or negligence of someone, even of an employer, the injured worker, according to Chicago accident attorneys at Karlin, Fleisher & Falkenberg, LLC, can either, under certain conditions, file a civil lawsuit against his/her employer or seek compensation with the Workers’ Compensation insurance program but will have to waive his or her right of suing his/her employer.

 

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If Nursing Home Abuse is Committed, Justice will have to be Served

Posted by on Jun 16, 2017 in Elder Abuse

If Nursing Home Abuse is Committed, Justice will have to be Served

Records from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) say that there are about 1.4 million residents living in about 15,700 registered nursing home facilities all across the U.S. Residents include: elders, usually 65 years old; individuals who, because of an illness (such as Alzheimer’s or Parkinson’s), require extra care and assistance; and, those needing rehabilitation therapies.

Thousands of nursing homes, however, do not have the needed number or personnel that would enable these to provide quality care. Thus, instead of genuine care and physical/emotional comfort, many residents rather, suffer physical, emotional, sexual (and even financial) abuses from aides and staff who complain of being over-worked and stressed-out.

Among the types of abuses suffered by nursing home residents, sexual abuse is the most wicked and most humiliating; however, due to shame, threats and difficulty on the part of the abused in explaining his/her unpleasant experience (for fear of being suspected of simply suffering from dementia), this abuse becomes the least reported, besides being very hard to detect.

Fondling, forced nudity, display of pornographic materials, forcing another resident to touch or kiss the victim and forced penetrative acts often accompany this type of abuse. Often, the defense mechanism of sexual victims, to make it appear, as well as convince themselves, that nothing is really happening is by warding-off any thoughts about the abuse and casting an appearance of calmness and composure. There is a way of detecting sexual abuse, though, such as by being observant of a loved one’s disposition during each visit. It is common for sexually abused residents to have a sudden change in their attitude or behavior, to be over-sensitive to touch, to have unexplained scars, and to display fear.

It is explained by the law firm Zavodnick, Zavodnick & Lasky, LLC that nursing homes are meant to be a relaxing resort-style living for the elderly to pass their days. However, many nursing homes prey on the handicaps of the elderly. This abuse can take many shapes and forms and causes serious harm to the elderly. Perhaps the most devastating consequence of the abuse is the psychological harm that is inflicted onto the victim. Only time can heal the mental damage that prolonged abuse causes, and some elderly people may not have the time necessary to fully recover.

Nursing home abuse is a crime and many states charge abusers with felony if proven guilty. Trusting anybody with loved ones is a difficult thing, but when this trust is betrayed and people are hurt, justice needs to be served.

 

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Possible Issues in Nursing Homes

Posted by on Jun 3, 2017 in Elder Abuse

Before putting a loved one in a nursing home, it is important to be informed of the possible risks. Of course, these risks are not inherent, but rather the result of a negligent party, who is usually the nursing home staff.
According to the website of Karlin, Fleisher & Falkenberg, LLC, those who have loved ones that have been victims of nursing home negligence may take legal action, including pursuing compensation from the damages sustained.
But how can a nursing home be negligent? Below are some of the most common manifestations of negligence in nursing homes.

Abuse

Elders are very vulnerable to abusive behaviors, primarily because they are physically and mentally limited to defend themselves. The most common abuse is physical, wherein the patients receive incidental force. This usually happens during restraining, so you may see your loved one with bruises and wounds on wrists, ankles, and other body parts that are typically restrained.
Maybe the nursing home staff is power tripping, or maybe he or she is just stressed out because of the nursing home’s inability to provide more staff for the huge number of residents. Either way, your loved one is still the person that suffers.
Other forms of abuse are emotional, psychological, and even sexual and financial.

Neglect

You put your loved one in a nursing home so he can get the care he deserves, but sometimes, he really doesn’t get that care, because the nursing home staff is incompetent, or again, the nursing home has very limited staff so they cannot cater to the needs of everybody at the same time. So, some patients tend to be neglected.
The most common manifestations of neglect include dehydration, malnutrition, poor hygiene, and the lack of medical care for those who need specific medical attention, such as for those with Alzheimer’s.
All these manifestations can have negative effects on the overall health of the patients, so the very goal why you put your loved one in a nursing home is not accomplished.

Incompetent Management

Before you put your loved one in a nursing home, observe the place first. Determine whether it has the adequate number of staff to accommodate all patients effectively or not. Look into the patients and see if they appear to be properly cared for. Look at the facilities and check if they are clean, safe, and sufficient for the needs of your loved one. These are the most common management issues associated with nursing homes, so if you are not careful, your loved one may not view that place as a home in the long run.

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Why Alimony Exists

Posted by on Feb 27, 2017 in Divorce

Divorce is a complicated process. It even involves the separation of assets and other liabilities, which can potentially have a financial impact on the couple. There are instances where this separation makes one of the parties involved to draw the shorter end of the stick.

This can happen because of various reasons. For example, the wife decides to stay at home to take care of the kids, sacrificing her marketability to the job market and her skills. The husband, on the other hand, benefits more because he gets to keep his job while his partner gets more responsibility at home. In time, this can have a significant disparity in husband and wife.

The wife is at risk of financial dependency and the husband is bound to have more financial freedom. This can be damaging when the couple decides to get a divorce, as it leaves the wife with limited employment opportunities.

For this reason, there is a thing called alimony or spousal support, to make up for all the lost time and money that could have resulted from the sacrifices involved in marriage. Some of the factors that are considered to determine alimony include the following:

  • The ability of the spouse to pay
  • Duration of the marriage
  • Duration of the spouse’s absence to the job market
  • The spouse’s educational level, skill marketability, and overall earning capacity
  • Duration of education or training to make the spouse reasonably marketable in the job market

It is also important to point out that alimony is not just about employment issues, but also about other problems such as health conditions. If the spouse has health conditions that may affect his or her ability to work efficiently or may require medical treatment, he or she may be eligible for spousal support.

Spousal support can also be temporary or permanent, depending on the circumstances. Temporary spousal support is issued for those who can solve or minimize the issues in time, such as the issues in employment that can be solved by adequate training. Permanent spousal support may be given to those who have issues that are not time-dependent, such as permanent medical conditions that may prevent the person from going to work.

Alimony can be a complicated legal matter. In fact, according to the website of Kirker Davis, LLP, determining alimony agreements can be very difficult, especially if the parties involved are unable to agree on the terms.

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The Most Common Car Accident Injuries

Posted by on Oct 14, 2016 in Car Accidents

The United States sees millions of car accidents every year. In 2014, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reported over 6 million incidents that led to 32,675 deaths and 2.34 million people getting treated for injuries. Additionally, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that Americans spend over a million days in hospitals each year to get treated for car accident injuries. For the year 2012, these injuries cost victims a sum total of $18 billion in lifetime medical expenses.

Car accidents can lead to a host of injuries, but many of these victims suffer from the same type of injuries that are common in most crashes. One such injury is whiplash. Caused by a sudden back-and-forth movement of the head and neck, whiplash is characterized by the stretching and tearing of neck tendons and muscles that causes stiffness and pain. Whiplash is typical of rear-end collisions, and even the most minor of these collisions can cause issues that might intensify through time. Another common injury in car accidents is blunt force trauma to the chest and abdomen. This typically leads to broken ribs, collapsed lungs, and other kinds of internal damage that could affect vital organs such as the kidney or liver.

Head and back injuries are also common to car accidents and are perhaps the most serious of the list. These injuries included traumatic brain injuries that can be caused by a blunt force to the head or an object, perhaps a shard of glass from the windshield, penetrating the skull. Spinal cord injuries also typically result from devastating car accidents. This medical condition is caused by damage to a victim’s spinal column or spinal cord, often leading to some form of paralysis.

Other injuries common to car accidents also include lacerations, fractures, and ligament damage. Sometimes, a victim’s injuries can also be compounded by emotional and psychological scars. Research conducted by the U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs found that about 9 percent of all motor vehicle accident survivors develop post-traumatic stress disorder or PTSD.

All in all, it’s quite clear that car accidents lead to very serious consequences that could affect victims for much longer than expected. As such, it’s always been crucial that car accident victims learn of the legal options available to them. If you or anyone you know have been seriously injured in a car crash, consider consulting with a Madison auto accident accident lawyer for more information.

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