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emergency-medicine-ER-vermont-find-a-doctorImmediately following an accident most injured parties seek emergency medical care.  Unfortunately, it is not unusual for an injured person to avoid scheduling follow-up treatment.  Either a person without medical insurance is concerned about accumulating additional medical bills, or they are afraid to miss work.  Regardless of the reason, not getting treatment in the days or weeks following an accident can negatively affect your case.  The importance of receiving post-accident follow-up medical care cannot be stressed enough.

Following Medical Advice

Instructions regarding follow-up medical care are usually provided at the end of an emergency room visit.  The attending physician or the nurse responsible for your care will explain what type of specialist should be seen or provide instructions for seeing a primary care physician.  These instructions are also included on any discharge notes and become part of your medical record.

atv-accidentAll-terrain vehicles or ATVs are popular in Georgia, particular in rural areas where these vehicles are used on farms, for hunting, or are sometimes just ridden for fun. Many individuals fail to appreciate that ATVs are dangerous and easy to crash. Statistics indicate that more than 130,000 injuries were caused by ATV accidents in 2012 with more than 550 adults and 140 children dying as the result of ATV accidents that same year. Individuals who are injured in an ATV accident frequently find it essential to retain the services of a skilled attorney who is experienced in helping individuals who have been injured in similar ways. If you have been injured in an ATV accidents due to the negligence of another party, a skilled attorney will be able to make sure that you receive the financial compensation that you deserve.

The Danger Presented by ATVs

The National Trauma Data Bank reports that ATVs are more dangerous than dirt bikes and are often just as dangerous on motorcycles. Many ATVs are intended for use by a single operator and are not designed to carry passengers. ATVs are also not designed to travel on paved roads. ATVs in Georgia are also dangerous due to lack of regulations and safety precautions and there is no state agency tasked with regulating ATV use. Also, because nearly all ATVs lack a cab or cage, ATV rollovers are more likely to cause serious injuries and even fatalities. Individuals should also be aware that three wheel ATVs are particularly dangerous. Due to the risk of three wheel ATVs rolling overs, these vehicles were removed from the market and manufacturers stopped producing three wheel ATVs. Statistics still suggest, however, that an estimated 2.4 million three-wheelers still remain in use today.

On Tuesday January 3, 2th017 a five-year-old girl was attacked by a neighbor’s three pit bulls after the dogs escaped through an opening in their owner’s fence.  The child received emergency treatment for bites to her face, shoulders, and legs.  Two weeks later another five-year-old girl was seriously injured and listed in critical condition after being attacked by three dogs.  During that same attack a six-year-old boy was killed.  These recent dog attacks raise concerns regarding Georgia dog owner liability and what can be done to protect small children from similar attacks.

Dog Bite Statistics

Unfortunately, dog attacks are not rare and the majority of the time these attacks involve young children.  The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) believe approximately 4.5 million dog bites occur annually.  It is estimated that 1,000 people are bitten by dogs each day.  Children between the ages of five and nine are at the greatest risk of receiving serious injuries related to dog bites.  Approximately 81 percent of all dog attacks involve children, 86 percent of all dog attacks cause bodily harm or maiming, and 76 percent of dog attacks result in fatalities.

droneWith Christmas comes gifts like hover boards and paintball guns that are highly desired but require skill to operate properly. An item sure to be a popular present this year is the unmanned aircraft system—commonly known as a drone. Drones, in the hands of new, untrained users, can be dangerous, and even when operated by experienced users they increasingly are causing accidents and injuries. https://www.faa.gov/uas/getting_started/

Drones cause accidents by dropping out of the sky or crashing into people and things. Collision with a drone, with its sharp angular parts, high speeds of travel and zooming in seemingly out of nowhere, naturally results in physical injuries and damage to whatever it hits.

Drones can malfunction for many reasons, such as an operator failing to correctly gauge speed, distance, angle, height, weather conditions, etc. A drone may unexpectedly lose power midflight. Also, a drone may have a defect in its design or manufacturing.

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The holiday season is the time of the year when you visit the homes of family and friends to attend festive parties or stay a few days if visiting from out of town. Your host wants to make your comfortable and keep you entertained, but it’s also the host’s responsibility to ensure you are safe.

You might slip on a spilled drink or in the shower or fall down the basement stairs. According to the National Floor Safety Institute, half of all accidental deaths are caused by falls in the home. Falls account for more than 8 million hospital emergency room visits, and slip-and-falls account for over 1 million hospital visits.

Because you were the guest of a family member or a dear friend you may be hesitant to ask that the host help pay for your injuries from a slip-and-fall in his or her home. But if your injuries are severe and require a long period of recuperation or physical therapy, you may have to sue the host and/or the insurance company for compensation.

aggressive driving and road rage
“You Idiot!” “Freakin’ Moron!” Where did you learn to drive? Grade School?!” These are only the G-Rated comments made by one experiencing road rage. The American Psychological Association defines road rage as the reaction of certain high-angered motorist to the behaviors of others while driving. Generally, aggressive driving and road rage is lumped together and used interchangeably as if they have the same meaning. However, the act of aggressively driving is an entirely different beast. This would include one who follows too closely, speeds unnecessarily, changes lanes in an unsafe manner, fails to signal, or engages in any other inconsiderate or negligent conduct while driving on the road.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration defines aggressive driving as taking place when “an individual commits a combination of moving traffic offenses so as to endanger other persons or property.” Aggressive driving may warrant a mere traffic citation, while road rage conduct can be heightened to an all-out criminal offense. Look at it like this, one who drives aggressively does so simply “by nature” or is triggered into doing so due to them running behind or being impatient. Road rage is brought on by a reaction to another’s conduct. When a motorist cuts you off, or doesn’t allow you to merge into that necessary lane, you react to that with anger, right?

Four Ways to Indicate Whether You Are An Aggressive Drive

It’s a sure sign of the coming of spring and summer when you see motorcyclists out for a joy ride. However, the are not only more bikes on the road during the warmer season, there are also more motorcycle accidents.

Owning or riding a motorcycle can be very dangerous. Unlike riding in a car, when you are on a bike, there is nothing protecting you in the event of a collision—no airbags, safety belts, and definitely no passenger compartment. Motorcycles are exposed on all sides, putting you at a higher risk for injury.  Motorcyclists are 35 times more likely to be involved in a fatal accident than those in cars. This means you have to be extra cautious to avoid an accident at every turn.

Motorcycles can hide in a driver’s blind spot. Some motorists will get over without checking over their shoulder and may sideswipe a motorcyclist in the process. These are some of the most common causes for motorcycle injuries:

In Central Georgia, a truck driver walking to a Family Dollar store after leaving his truck was killed by a two-car collision.  The car accident left the drivers and any passengers in the vehicle without injuries and was considered a minor accident by authorities.  However, the pedestrian struck by one of the vehicles died less than an hour after the accident at a medical facility.  The recent Georgia pedestrian accident is a reminder of the danger of the roadways, even when vehicles aren’t traveling at high speeds and pedestrians exercise caution.

Injured pedestrians or family members of walkers and runners killed by an automobile may be able to recover compensation for the cost of medical expenses, lost wages from the inability to work, funeral expenses, and other applicable kinds of economic loss.  The injured pedestrian or estate of the deceased must show the driver responsible for the accident was acting negligently, and that this negligence caused the accident and the resulting injuries.  Drivers are obligated to follow the rules of the road and to drive safely, but failure to do so means they are liable to those who are injured.

black shoes - runningWhen serious, or catastrophic, injuries are sustained, other avenues of compensation or legal relief may be necessary to pursue.  Occasionally, other people or entities may share in the responsibility for damages to be paid to the injured or the deceased’s estate.  If the at-fault driver was under an “umbrella” policy, the driver’s family member’s or employer’s policy may be available for additional compensation.  The pedestrian’s own auto insurance policy, depending on the type of coverage obtained, may also be available if policy limits fall far below the cost of medical expenses.  In Georgia, all motorists are required to carry bodily injury liability insurance coverage for $25,000 per person and $50,000 per accident, but not all drivers follow the law and an injured’s Uninsured/Underinsured coverage may be called upon to provide the financial relief needed. Continue reading

One may be familiar with the term “assault and battery” after reading the term in criminal news articles or hearing it used in a television show.  People often don’t realize that assault and battery are also intentional torts under Georgia law.  Personal injury cases are usually associated with negligent conduct, like a store failing to clean up a spill and causing a slip-and-fall.  However, civil suit can also be pursued for when someone purposefully sought to threaten or make offensive or harmful contact with another.

aid boxAssault happens when someone intentionally acts in a way that causes the other person, or group of people, reasonable apprehension of imminent and harmful contact.  For example, if someone swings around a knife near someone else to cause fear, and the fear of being hurt is reasonable, the person with the knife could be liable for damages.  No contact is necessary for the tort of assault in a civil action.  Battery occurs when there is purposeful contact, and the contact was made with the intent to harm or offend.  Both intentional torts similar to their criminal counterparts, with the distinction between the statutes lying in the available remedy and the parties involved.

In Clayton County, Georgia, a trial began this week of a man accused of exposing women to the HIV virus after he knew he was infected with HIV.  Under Georgia law, a person who knows they have been infected with HIV is under a statutory duty to inform their partner that they are infected with HIV prior to sexual intercourse.  Failure to do so means one is guilty of a felony and can face up to ten years in prison.  HIV and Hepatitis are specifically covered under Georgia law, but other sexually transmitted diseases may be prosecuted under criminal assault or battery statutes.

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