ChasenBoscolo Injury Lawyers | Injury Law Blog

A Few Things to Keep in Mind This 4th of July

by Keith Adkins | June 30th, 2015

This weekend, citizens will be celebrating our nation’s independence as 4th of July festivities take place. Our Maryland personal injury lawyers at ChasenBoscolo Injury Lawyers would like to let you know about a few of these activities and events you may not want to miss.

It wouldn’t be the 4th of July without seeing some fireworks and there will be plenty of displays to check out around the state. In Baltimore, fireworks will be launched beginning at 7 p.m. near the Harborplace Amphitheater. Those wishing to see the display can do so from the amphitheater, Harbor East, Federal Hill, or even Fell’s Point. A parade and fireworks display will also kick off in Annapolis at around 6:30 p.m. The event will take place at the Annapolis City Dock.

The city of Fredrick is gearing up for an event all its own, as Baker Park and Culler Lake will host a festival on the 4th of July. There will be music, food, rides, games and other activities during the day. Then, as dusk settles in, a fireworks display will take place.

Each of these events will attract large numbers of people, which can congest traffic and lead to accidents. That’s why it’s crucial that you keep safety in mind while driving. One of the best ways to prevent crashes is to obey all traffic laws and an article from Southern Maryland News Net outlines some of the most important rules to keep in mind when driving.

Our legal staff at ChasenBoscolo hope this information helps you to have a fun and safe 4th of July weekend!

Bookmark and Share

Washington, D.C., Wrongful Death Lawsuit Filed in Connection to Death of Inmate

by Keith Adkins | June 23rd, 2015

Mental illness is rampant in our nation’s prison system. Data from the Bureau of Justice Statistics shows roughly 64 percent of jail inmates, 56 percent of state prisoners, and 45 percent of federal prisoners suffer from some sort of mental disorder or disease. Too often though, little is done to protect the health and safety of these individuals in prison despite how common these conditions are.

In fact, a Washington, D.C., wrongful death lawsuit was recently filed in connection to the suicide of an inmate who showed signs of mental illness. The family of the victim is seeking $1.2 million in damages for their loss.

According to an article from NBC Washington News, the suit claims the prisoner, who was an executive with the U.S. Department of Labor at the time of his death, made statements indicating he was mentally ill on several occasions following his arrest, yet officers “took no special precautions” to protect the inmate from himself. That includes allowing the victim access to a razor blade, which he used to commit suicide.

The suit names Washington, D.C., mayor, Muriel Bowser, and the Washington, D.C., Department of Corrections as defendants in the case.

Our Washington, D.C., personal injury lawyers at ChasenBoscolo Injury Lawyers understand the struggles a family can face after losing a loved one and we hope a decision being reached in this particular case brings a sense of peace and closure to the family of the victim.

Bookmark and Share

2015 Takata Airbag Recall Expanded Once Again

by Keith Adkins | June 17th, 2015

Last month, a Japanese manufacturer of automobile airbags, Takata Corp., announced they would be recalling millions of vehicles due to a fault in their product that’s capable of causing motorists to suffer serious injuries. Our defective product lawyers at ChasenBoscolo Injury Lawyers point out that since that time, the recall has been expanded to include more cars and trucks. Now it seems the number of affected vehicles is growing again.

The recall initially affected around 20 million cars, but quickly grew to cover an estimated 34 million vehicles. Now, Honda has announced they are adding another 1 million vehicles to that total.

With as many as 1 in 4 vehicles now affected by the recall, many are wondering what the problem is. According to an article from NBC 4 Washington News, experts have determined that high humidity can affect the chemical reaction within an airbag and cause ruptures in the canister that houses the propellant unit. If an accident occurs, parts of the canister can explode and be launched at a vehicle’s occupants, causing serious harm.

Investigators have determined the faulty airbags are responsible for causing more than 100 injuries and have claimed at least seven lives.

To help prevent becoming the victim of a defective airbag accident, our Washington, D.C., personal injury lawyers suggest researching your vehicle to determine if it is currently under recall. If so, we would also encourage you to have any necessary repairs done immediately. We hope these tips help to keep you and your loved ones safe in the wake of the massive 2015 Takata airbag recall.

Bookmark and Share

Maryland Law Enforcement Using Laser Guns to Reduce Speed-Related Accidents

by Keith Adkins | June 9th, 2015

Speeding is one of the leading causes of auto accidents in Maryland, Virginia and Washington, D.C. Statistics show that as many as 1 in 3 fatal collisions involves a motorist who was traveling faster than the posted speed limit.

Speeding can be especially dangerous around school zones because of the close proximity to children. Maryland’s Prince George’s County uses cameras to catch and fine speeders in school zones. Some motorists are able to avoid tickets by slowing down around the cameras and then speeding up once they have passed through the camera’s view.

This strategy may no longer be effective though, as law enforcement will begin using new technology to catch drivers traveling too fast in school zones. Reports from NBC Washington News explain a new laser gun is a hybrid between a radar gun and a camera. A stationary officer is capable of holding the unit and “clocking” drivers as they pass. Much like a speed camera though, the officer doesn’t need to pull the driver over to ticket them. Instead, the vehicle’s information is recorded in the laser gun and a fine can be sent to the driver later.

Officers say, for the first month the new laser guns are in use, drivers will receive warnings. After that though, speeding motorists can expect to receive fines.

Our team at ChasenBoscolo Injury Lawyers understands the dangers that speeding can pose to everyone who is on or near the road. So our Maryland car accident lawyers encourage you to do your part to keep our roads safe by always obeying the posted speed limit and slowing down while driving through school zones.

 

Bookmark and Share

What’s Being Done to Improve Cyclist Safety in Our State

by Keith Adkins | June 2nd, 2015

There seem to be more bicycles on the roadways in Maryland, which must mean biking season has arrived. Unfortunately for cyclists though, this time of year is also notorious for seeing higher Maryland bicycle accident totals than any other time of year. Data from the Maryland Highway Safety Office shows that more than half of all crashes involving bicycles occur between May and August. Almost half of our state’s bicycle accident fatalities also occur during that four-month window.

Our bicycle accident lawyers at ChasenBoscolo Injury Lawyers explain that there is a strong community effort coming together in our state to offer cyclists more protection on the road while raising awareness about the importance of bicycle safety.

While an article from My Eastern Shore MD highlighted safety tips for motorists and cyclists alike, others are taking another approach toward making the roadways safer. In fact, a widow from Carroll County has taken legal action against the state, claiming a defect in a Maryland highway’s design is to blame for her husband’s death.

In August 2010, the woman’s 51-year-old husband was struck by a tractor-trailer as he was riding his bike along Route 75 in Union Bridge. The woman filed a Maryland wrongful death lawsuit claiming the master plan for the highway calls for a designated bike lane along the shoulder of the highway; however, the lane was never installed. Furthermore, the state has refused to install the lane after the woman offered to pay for the project out of her own pocket.

Keeping cyclists safe on the road has to be a priority in order for roadway users to keep safety top of mind and for bike lanes to get installed. So please, do your part to keep bicycle riders safe by sharing the road with all users.

Bookmark and Share

Lawmakers Consider New Rules for Determining Social Security Disability Eligibility

by Keith Adkins | May 26th, 2015

It’s no secret that getting Social Security Disability benefits can be difficult. The Social Security Administration (SSA) says that more than 60 percent of all initial disability claims are denied and one of the reasons for this is the way the SSA determines if an individual is disabled.

The agency uses what’s known as grid rules to determine a claimant’s level of disability. Our Social Security Disability lawyers at ChasenBoscolo Injury Lawyers explain these rules take into consideration factors that can affect an individual’s quality of life; however, the rules have not been audited since 1979, when they were written.

To improve these rules, a Utah Senator has introduced several bills that would revamp these rules for improvements. An article from Ripon Advance states the Guiding Responsible and Improved Disability Decisions (GRIDD) Act would call for the SSA to modernize the grid rules used by claim examiners. The Promoting Opportunity Through Informed Choice Act establishes the implementation of online tools that encourage disability recipients to return to work, while the Disability Evidence Integrity Act creates rules that prevent those who cannot participate in federal health care programs from providing evidence in Social Security Disability cases.

At ChasenBoscolo, we are aware of how archaic some of the Social Security Disability system’s rules can be and our Maryland personal injury lawyers are anxious to see if any of these bills are advanced towards becoming law during the upcoming legislative sessions.

 

Bookmark and Share

Defective Takata Airbags Cause Largest Automotive Recall in U.S. History

by Staff | May 20th, 2015

On Tuesday, May 19, Takata doubled its recall of defective airbags in the United States. The increased recall covers nearly 34 million vehicles, affecting roughly 1 in 7 cars in the U.S.

It is the largest automotive recall in U.S. history.

A defect in the airbags can cause them to explode during an accident and shoot metal shrapnel inside the car. The airbags are linked to six deaths and more than 100 injuries.

What cars are affected by the Takata recall?

It can be difficult to tell if the airbag in your car is recalled, but your vehicle identification number (VIN) can help. You can enter your car’s VIN here to see if your car is affected by any recalls.

It’s important to check your VIN periodically over the next few months. Automakers are still working on providing complete lists of vehicles with defective airbags, and your VIN might not show up in the database for several weeks.

Before it was expanded, the recall affected cars made by BMW, Chrysler, Ford, GM, Honda, Mazda, Mitsubishi, Nissan, Subaru and Toyota. The new, expanded recall may affect even more.

What should you do if you have a defective airbag?

Contact the manufacturer of your car. Most vehicle manufacturers have pages on their websites where you can check if your vehicle is affected and contact them for a free replacement of the defective parts. You can also call your vehicle manufacturer’s customer service number and give them your VIN.

What is a VIN and how do I find it?

VIN stands for Vehicle Identification Number. It is a 17-digit code assigned to every vehicle in the United States since 1981. Your car’s VIN is unique.

To find your VIN, look in one of several locations in your car. The location of the VIN can be different on different makes and models. The DMV offers this guide on where to look for your VIN.

Once you have your VIN, write it down and keep it someplace safe. It can be valuable information in the event of an accident or recall.

What should I do if I was in an accident with a defective airbag?

Call us. Even if you don’t know the VIN or no longer have the car, our defective airbag attorneys can investigate your accident to determine if your car had a Takata airbag. If you were injured by a defective airbag, you may be eligible for compensation.

Bookmark and Share

Washington, D.C. Motorcycle Accident Lawyers Talk Safety Prior To The Rolling Thunder Ride To Freedom

by Keith Adkins | May 19th, 2015

On Sunday, May 24, a motorcycle rally called Rolling Thunder Ride to Freedom will take place in the Washington, D.C., metro area. The event will kick off at the Pentagon at 7 A.M. before crossing the Memorial Bridge for a ride around the National Mall.

Hundreds of thousands of motorcyclists are expected to turn out for the event. With so many bikes on the road, it will be important for participants and other motorists in the area to keep safety a top priority when traveling.

That’s why the Washington, D.C. motorcycle accident lawyers with ChasenBoscolo would like to offer these tips to help keep bikers and drivers alike safe from harm:

  • Know the Route- Certain roads around the rally’s route will be closed to traffic. NBC Washington has provided as list of the roadways that will be shut down from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.
  • Use Safety Equipment- Motorcyclists should remember to wear a helmet and eye protection anytime they are on a bike that is in motion. Drivers and passengers of cars or trucks need to remember to buckle up their seat belts as well.
  • Drive Defensively- All motorists need to assume others on the road can’t see them and maneuver their vehicle accordingly. This means looking twice in all directions before entering an intersection or changing lanes while driving.

At ChasenBoscolo, our team of Washington, D.C., personal injury lawyers hopes these tips help you have a safe and fun weekend in the greater metro area!

Bookmark and Share

Amtrak Train 188 from Washington, D.C., Derails in Philadelphia

by chb | May 13th, 2015

According to philly.com, Amtrak Train 188 jumped the tracks on a curve in Northeast Philadelphia just before 9:30 p.m. on Tuesday, May 12. All seven of the train’s cars derailed. The train was headed from Washington, D.C., to New York City with 238 passengers and five crew members aboard.

Eight deaths have been confirmed and officials believe the toll will rise as the search for more bodies continues. More than 200 people were taken to Philadelphia-area hospitals for injuries related to the derailment and eight victims remain in critical condition. The engineer and conductor of the train survived.

The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) reports that the train was moving at 102 mph when it left the tracks—more than double the speed limit for a curve where several rail lines merge together.

NTSB Board member Robert Sumwalt stated that the agency would be focusing its investigation on a variety of factors that may have contributed to the crash, including the train’s speed, the condition of the track, potential mechanical defects and the actions of crew members leading up to the incident.

Data from the Federal Railroad Administration and the Bureau of Transportation Statistics shows that 213 passengers have died in train-related incidents in the United States since 1990. This incident, however, is the deadliest crash on Amtrak’s Northeast Corridor since 1987, when 16 people were killed in a Baltimore train collision.

At ChasenBoscolo, we send our heartfelt sympathies to the loved ones of passengers killed in the Amtrak Train 188 derailment, and our team wishes a fast and full recovery to everyone injured in this tragic event.

Bookmark and Share

Maryland Construction Accident Lawyers Discuss Dangers of Workplace Exposure to Carbon Monoxide

by Keith Adkins | May 12th, 2015

There are plenty of hazards on a construction site. Heavy equipment, tools, and working in high areas each present their own set of risks; however, it may be the hazards workers can’t see, such as deadly toxins, that present the greatest danger.

Carbon monoxide is one such toxin that can find its way onto a construction site through several different means. Machinery and other equipment can emit carbon monoxide, which can cause brain damage and render unconscious anyone exposed to high concentrations of the gas. Continued exposure could lead to death.

Our Maryland construction accident attorneys at ChasenBoscolo Injury Lawyers say the risks carbon monoxide can pose on a construction site were underscored when 11 workers at a Rockville construction site were hospitalized after being exposed to the gas.

Reports from NBC 4 Washington News say the incident occurred on Monday, May 11, at a building that was being renovated on Southlawn Lane. Officials did not release information regarding the source of the carbon monoxide, but did say eight workers were taken to University of Maryland’s Shock Trauma Center for treatment. Three others were taken to local facilities for care.

At ChasenBoscolo, we’ve seen the damage exposure to toxins in the workplace can have on victims. That’s why our Maryland personal injury lawyers would like to help construction workers in our area avoid exposure to deadly levels of carbon monoxide by offering these tips:

  • Use electric-powered equipment- Carbon monoxide is created through the burning of fuels such as gas, propane, and diesel. Eliminating these fuel types on the job can help limit exposure to the deadly gas.
  • Work in well-ventilated areas- If fuel-burning equipment must be used, be sure to use the machinery where there is a strong flow of fresh air.
  • Install carbon monoxide detectors- Putting a unit on the wall that will sound an alarm if carbon monoxide levels become too high could save lives.
Bookmark and Share