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Posted on in Car Accidents

Santa Clara County personal injury attorneyGetting into a car accident can have devastating consequences for those in the vehicles affected. Astoundingly, almost 1.3 million people die each year in car accidents and an additional 20-50 million are injured or disabled. Whenever a person gets into a vehicle, they are taking a risk. Drivers can lessen the risk that they will get into an accident by never driving after consuming drugs or alcohol, avoiding distractions like cell phones, and keeping a lookout for careless drivers. There are many things that can trigger a car accident, but you may be surprised as to the main causes of such accidents.

Distracted Driving

Distracted driving has become a more serious problem every year. Having the world at our fingertips on a cell phone has made it more tempting than ever to take your eyes off of the road. The National Safety Council reports that 1.6 million crashes each year are caused by distracted drivers. In fact, distracted driving is so dangerous that 1 out of 4 of all car accidents are caused by it.

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San Jose personal injury attorneyRetail product manufacturers and distributors have the responsibility to ensure that their products are safe and reliable. Unfortunately, defective or otherwise dangerous products do still reach consumers. When a company learns that a product that they manufacture or sell is defective, they have the responsibility to fix the problem and warn customers who have already purchased the product. Often this is done through a product recall. Recalls, however, are usually prompted by reports of injuries caused by the products in question.

Major Retailer Faces Lawsuit

Target has come under scrutiny after serious injuries were allegedly caused by a product sold by the retail giant. A family from Riverside, California has filed a lawsuit against Target regarding a potty trainer that they purchased there that severely injured their 3-year-old son. The young boy’s parents and grandparents claim that the boy was nearly dismembered. According to the family, the boy’s genitals became stuck in the polypropylene weePOD Basix potty trainer causing severe lacerations. The boy’s parents rushed him to the emergency room, and the lasting effects of the injury are unknown.

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San Jose car accident lawyerThe moments after a car accident can be frightening and overwhelming. Even as the vehicles are coming to a stop, many people have a variety of thoughts racing through their heads, all at the same time. Is everyone okay? Is anyone injured? Am I hurt?

While you are taking stock of your situation following a crash, you should, of course, check yourself for injuries, keeping in mind that injuries are not always immediately apparent. Car accident victims may suffer whiplash, damage to soft tissue, concussions, spinal injuries, broken bones, and other serious injuries that may not become obvious for several hours or even days after the accident. Many of those who are involved in a car accident are quick to conclude that they are not injured, but these assumptions can be dangerous.

Fight or Flight Hormones Mask Pain

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San Jose personal injury attorneyThis is a busy time of year for many of us. Whether celebrating Kwanza, Hanukkah, or Christmas, millions of Americans will be traveling by car this holiday season, putting you and your family at an increased risk of getting into a car accident. The National Safety Council estimates that there were about 300 traffic fatalities last year and 37,000 injuries due to traffic accidents during the days surrounding Christmas of 2016.  Every time that a person gets into a vehicle, they are taking a risk, but there are steps you can take in order to mitigate that risk.

Experts encourage drivers to make sure that their car is properly maintained. If you are going to drive a long distance this holiday season, it is a good idea to take the car to a service station to be inspected. Check the tires for correct air pressure and ensure that the tires still have adequate tread depth. Top off all the fluids in the car and replace old or worn out wiper blades. Ensure that the car’s battery is working correctly. It is also a good idea to be prepared with an emergency car kit. In it, place extra phone chargers, blankets, flashlights, batteries, flares, reflective markers, water, snacks, and tools. Check your route and be aware of increased traffic patterns and accidents due to the holiday rush.

If You Get into an Accident, Take These Steps

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San JOse distracted driving accident lawyerAccording to the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration, distracted driving behaviors such as reading a text, making a call, or simply changing the radio station while driving causes at least 12 percent of car accidents worldwide and 14 percent of U.S accidents. A recent study published in Frontiers in Psychology has shed even more light on the subject. Ole Johansson, a researcher at Norway's Institute of Transport Economics, led the study that sought to identify which demographic of people was most likely to engage in dangerous distracted driving.

A Revealing Survey

Young men, frequent drivers, and those with neurotic and extroverted personalities were found to be the most likely to be dangerously distracted while driving. Older women were the least likely group of people to be distracted. The researchers acknowledged that their findings might be slightly skewed, however, because their method relied on self-reporting.

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san jose personal injury attorneyWhether it be by a yellow school bus, the Santa Clara Valley Transit Authority (VTA), an intrastate bus line connecting various cities throughout California, or an interstate bus line that transports people from one state to the next, public transit buses are a valuable and affordable transportation option for all. Unfortunately, they can also be exceedingly dangerous when an accident occurs, and the dangers are not limited to passengers only. When it comes to bus accidents, anyone in the vicinity, including pedestrians, bicyclists, other drivers, motorcyclists could be at risk—children and adults alike.

Buses on American Roadways Experience Thousands of Accidents per Year

Although buses are thought to experience fewer accidents than the collective of individual drivers each year, a 2010 study from the University of Michigan’s Transportation Research Institute shows that these accidents occur far more often than most realize—and many are catastrophic. According to the study’s findings analysis, approximately 63,000 accidents involving buses occur each and every year. Furthermore, a comparative study from the Journal of Safety Research found that, while bus accidents account for an overall small share of the traffic accidents in America each year, their accident per million passenger miles is comparable to those of individual automobile drivers.

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San Jose personal injury attorneyOver the next week or so, children throughout the Bay Area will take to the streets dressed as comic book superheroes, movie characters, spooky creatures and more. Trick-or-treating on Halloween, for many families, is a tradition that traces back several generations, and as October draws to a close, the excitement begins to grow. Amidst the fun, sweets, tricks, and treats, however, accidents can and do happen, and it is important for you and your young ones to stay safe this Halloween.

Plan Ahead

As a parent, you may have spent hours, days, and even weeks preparing costumes for your children. Yet when trick-or-treating time rolls around those same parents often do not have a plan for where to go or how long to stay out. Decide ahead of time which parts of your neighborhood you would like to visit. If your children want to trick-or-treat in another part of town—near a family member or friend, for example—it is a good idea to drive through that neighborhood a few times. Check out the area both during daylight hours and at dusk so you can identify any potentially dangerous intersections while understanding what your children will be seeing as the sun sets. 

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San Jose personal injury attorneyGetting into a car accident is a terrible experience for anyone. Being the victim of a hit and run can be even more devastating. A hit and run accident is any accident in which a driver intentionally leaves the scene without providing contact information. This can include when a car hits you and then speeds away or when a driver hits your parked car and leaves no contact information. Many victims of hit and run accidents are unsure of how to get compensation for their damages and injuries.

Collect Information and Gather Evidence

The first step to take after you have been involved in a hit and run is to collect as much information as you can. If possible, take note of the car and driver who hit you. Write down the model, make, and color of the car. Write down the license plate number or snap a picture of it if you have time. Note the time and location of the accident. Collecting this information helps the police find the person who hit you as well as help your car insurance company to make decisions about your claim.

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Posted on in Personal Injury

San Jose personal injuryFor many communities across California and around the nation, Friday nights during the fall season mean just one thing: high school football. The game, in many areas, has become more than just recreation or competition; it is an institution with roots going back several generations. Of course, youth sports are available to children as young as four years old, with soccer and T-ball usually among their options. In the course of a game or practice, unfortunately, it is not common for young athletes to get hurt, and many coaches will tell you that such injuries are simply “part of the game.” But, how far does “part of the game” include, and what responsibility do parents have for assuming the risks?

Risks Inherent to the Activity

Regardless of the sport or physical activity and age level, there will always be the possibility of getting hurt. Certain types of injuries are considered acceptable dangers of the sport or activity. For example, recreational or competitive cyclists may be susceptible to pulled muscles and crash-related bumps, bruises, and broken bones. Likewise, a baseball or softball player is at the reasonable—yet accepted, in most cases—risk of being hit by a pitch or a batted ball.

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San Jose premises liability accidentIn a few short months, the winter holidays will be upon us again. At this point, only the best planners have started their holiday shopping, but soon they will be joined by millions across the country looking for great deals on the best gifts. With the increase in shoppers will come the inevitable increased risk of shopping accidents and injuries. Wet floors, exposed trip hazards, and falling merchandise can all lead to serious injuries to unsuspecting customers. While premises liability laws in California require property owners and occupants to ensure their property is safe for others to enter, there are a few things you should know about how such laws work.

Most Common Retail Customer Injuries

Black Friday stampedes and fights over the season’s hottest toys may make headlines, but other types are much more common in most stores and shopping centers. Slip and fall accidents due to wet or poorly maintained floors are statistically the most likely to occur. Shoppers can also trip over exposed edges of carpet, cords, displays, or other items. Falls may result in sprains, strains, back injuries, and broken bones, leading to long-term medical care and hefty bills.

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San Jose personal injury attorneyWhen you have been hurt in a car accident, a slip and fall accident on someone else’s property, or any other type of incident, your first priority should be making a full physical recovery if at all possible. Of course, depending on the circumstances of your case, you may be entitled to collect compensation for your injuries from the party who caused or allowed the accident to happen. While there is no legal requirement for you to hire a personal injury attorney following an accident, doing so could be the key to getting the money you need to put your life back together.

Analyze the Situation

If your accident left you with a few bumps and bruises and relatively minor damage to your property—common in minor fender-benders—you might be able to navigate filing an insurance claim on your own. While the insurance company may still try to offer you a lowball settlement, there are not very many uncertainties to be addressed. However, if your accident totaled your car, put you in the hospital for a few days, and caused long-lasting injuries that will affect you for years to come, you should probably call a lawyer. An attorney is also useful if the insurance company refuses to pay, regardless of the severity of the accident.

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San Jose workplace accident attorneyWhen you have been injured at work, your thoughts may initially turn to filing for workers’ compensation benefits to cover the costs and damages associated with your injuries. Such a reaction is reasonable, as workers’ compensation is intended to offer coverage for a large majority of workplace accidents and injuries. There are, however, many situations in which workers’ compensation is either insufficient or inappropriate, and a separate lawsuit may be necessary.

Personal Injury and Third-Party Lawsuits

The best and most appropriate route for obtaining the compensation you deserve following a workplace injury depends on a number of factors. First, the cause of your injury is important. If you were injured in an accident that nobody else caused while in the normal scope of your job, a personal injury lawsuit will probably not be necessary.

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San Jose personal injury attorneyBy now, you have seen them everywhere. You can buy them at toy stores, dollar stores, and even many gas stations and flea markets. They are called fidget spinners, and they are among the most popular toys to hit the market in recent years. Unfortunately, however, there have been reports throughout the United States and Great Britain of fidget spinners causing injuries. It seems that the trendy toy could be more dangerous than many people realize.

What Are Fidget Spinners?

In recent years, several products have become available that are designed to help individuals channel nervous energy and to soothe anxiety. Among the first such products were fidget cubes—cubes of about an inch and a half on each side with various dexterous and tactile activities on each face. A person with anxious tendencies could hold the cube in his or her hand while manipulating a switch, dial, or rollerball to ease tension and reduce fidgeting—hence the name “fidget cube.”

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San Jose personal injury attorneyOfficials in California have given the approval for three Fire Ball rides to reopen following a deadly accident at the Ohio State Fair last month. The accident occurred on opening night of the fair, killing one and sending seven others to the hospital with injuries.

A Tragic Situation

On July 26, fairgoers in Columbus, Ohio, watched in stunned horror as the ride known as the Fire Ball came apart while it was in motion. The Fire Ball is a pendulum-type ride which rotates riders as it swings back and forth in a large arc. Videos taken of the incident show pieces of the ride being thrown—along with several riders—as it reached the furthest point of its swing. Witnesses said that they saw at least two riders ejected from the ride and flying up to 20 feet before landing on their backs on concrete.

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San Jose personal injury attorneyOver the last week, national headlines have been abuzz with the story of an 18-year-old California woman who was broadcasting a video live to social media while behind the wheel. During the course of filming the video, she lost control of her car, resulting in an accident that killed the woman’s sister—and the whole thing was immediately posted to Instagram.

Despite warning after warning and countless advertisements and public safety messages, some drivers cannot seem to resist the temptation to use their cell phones while driving. Many convince themselves that it is fine to send a quick text message or read an email. In reality, however, using a hand-held cell phone while driving is simply unsafe.

Fatal Accident in Los Banos

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San Jose personal injury attorneyAnyone who has ever been in a car accident can probably remember the feelings of confusion and uncertainty in the moments immediately following the crash. If you were the one driving, such feelings may be amplified as you replay the incident in your head, wondering what you may have done wrong and what you should do next. Your initial impulse may be to get out of your car, check on the occupants of the other car and apologize for causing the accident—even if you are not certain that the wreck was your fault. Doing so, however, may not be the best idea.

You Do Not Know What You Do Not Know

When a car accident occurs, treating any physical injuries should be the top priority. The next most important concern is to determine who was at fault for the accident. The at-fault party is likely to be liable for any and all damages—including property damage and injuries—caused by the crash. Determining fault can be very complicated, as there may be a large number of factors involved.

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San Jose personal injury attorney, trauma to the brainBrain injuries are often unclear at first, especially to those without experience in diagnosis. Many times, these traumatic and life-altering injuries are left undiagnosed at first as many minor symptoms mask those injuries. The medical treatment required in determining the damage is just the start of the financial burden, which may accumulate for an entire lifetime. If someone else is at fault for the damage caused by a brain injury, the economic struggle should not be on the victim, but on those responsible.

Identifying a Brain Injury

Brain injuries can happen anywhere—on a battlefield, at work, on the playground, or in a car. The brain is vital to everyday life functions like breathing, speaking, and walking. Something as simple as a slip and fall is enough to cause a traumatic brain injury.

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San Jose workplace injury attorney, workplace injuries, workplace safetyFood service orientated positions can historically be described as jobs with grueling schedules, low wages, and overall stress producers. As of July 1, 2017, the minimum wage for service oriented jobs will increase from $10.50 to $12.00 per hour. Yet while this wage increase may be a welcome advancement, the one factor that change will elude is the dangerous threat of on-the-job or workplace injuries.

Brian Garry, senior director of foodservice for the Cintas Corporation, recently stated that many operators simply do not anticipate an accident or personal injury and are often left unprepared.

In an effort to better educate owners, managers, and employees, Cintas recently identified the top four personal injuries often suffered by restaurant workers.

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San Jose motorcycle accident attorney, motorcycle accidentsMotorcycle accidents are often debilitating, or even fatal, to those involved. Additionally, the devastation is often preventable, which perhaps makes the emotional impact harder to swallow. Although victims and families may be left in the figurative paralysis of what to do, a quick legal reaction time boosts the chances of a successful outcome.

A successful claim enables victims to gain compensation for much of their loss. No two cases are identical. However, there are behaviors frequently identified as the causes of a motorcycle accident.

Top Causes of Motorcycle Crashes

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San Jose dog bite lawyer, California pet laws, dog bitesWhen an individual is bitten by a dog, it can be a traumatic experience. Estimates suggest that approximately 4.5 million people in the United States will sustain a dog bite related injury this year. In fact, statistics involving the act by man’s proclaimed best friend account for the following:

  • More than one-third of all homeowner liability claims;
  • Over 6,500 attacks on U.S. Postal Service carriers;
  • Nearly a one-in-five chance of infection; and
  • Increased probability of undergoing reconstructive surgery.

Every 75 seconds someone experiences an encounter with an aggressive or protective canine in the United States—an encounter in which the handler or owner may be at fault.

Although dog bite laws vary state by state, California has seen an increase in dangerous dogs, and bites can occur as a result of improper handling or ignorance of dog bite laws.

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John J. Garvey, III
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San Jose, CA 95113
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