Personal Injury News & Developments

Towed Trailers and SafetyIf you’ve ever had occasion to wonder just how safe all of those trailers being towed by cars on the road are, it is not without good reason. The Chicago towing accident attorneys of Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers have represented many clients whose injuries have stemmed from the irresponsible use of trailers or inexperience of the drivers towing them. Unfortunately, many drivers simply cannot appreciate the danger involved whenever they choose to tow things such as boats and trailers behind them. Before hitching anything to your vehicle, you should be fully aware of how to keep the trailer secure as well as how to maintain control of the trailer while on the road.

Common Forms of Trailers

When families want to get away for a week and enjoy the great outdoors, they often want to bring their personal effects and items such as the family boat along with them. The most common types of trailers you may notice on the roads today include the following.

  • Motorboats. Not only is it important to maintain control of the trailer carrying a boat, but the boat itself must be properly secured in order to keep it from breaking free and becoming a road hazard.
  • Horse trailers. It is not uncommon to see horse trailers on the road, but these can be unstable due to the weight distribution, especially when the animals shift position within the trailer.
  • Camper trailer. These are designed to allow families to carry their personal items and provide a safe haven from the elements when exploring nature. When unevenly loaded, these trailers can easily sway or drift and become difficult to manage.

Over 17,000 people are severely injured or killed in towing related accidents each year and our Chicago auto accident lawyers find this statistic to be startling and unacceptable. Nobody should endanger the lives of those around them due to the refusal to become properly educated on the safe operation of a trailer prior to operating one.

Driver Education and Experience Contribute to Towing Accidents

It requires great knowledge and care to safely operate a vehicle that is pulling something behind it. You are required to handle turns, lane changes and stops differently and simple errors such as oversteer or understeer and braking too quickly can cause things to go wrong very quickly. Once the control of a trailer is lost, the devastation that follows can be catastrophic. Here are some of the most common errors that drivers make when towing a trailer behind their car.

  • Using the wrong hitch or hitch ball to secure the trailer or failing to use safety chains designed to keep the trailer from breaking free.
  • Failure to ensure that connections are operating correctly. Trailers that are heavier than 2,500 pounds require electric brakes and a breakaway system, but these safety implements are useless if they are not properly connected.
  • Overreacting to hazards. When a vehicle cuts off a driver towing a trailer, he or she may overreact by hitting the brakes too quickly or turning too abruptly. This can result in trailer sway, the separation of the trailer from the hitch or a jackknifed trailer.
  • Improper handling of turns. Drivers are usually very inexperienced when towing trailers behind their cars and do not consider the extra space and maneuvers required to successfully make what are otherwise simple turns.

If you have been involved in an accident involving a car towed trailer and the driver of that vehicle did not take proper measures to secure the trailer, was not properly educated on safe towing practices or lost control of the trailer due to reckless behavior, you may be entitled to compensation for the payment of your hospital bills, out of pocket expenses, property damage, loss of income, pain and suffering and other financial considerations related to your injuries. Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers is a highly trusted and accredited group of attorneys that has maximized the financial recovery on behalf of thousands of clients following automobile and trucking accidents.

Contact us today to arrange a free consultation with one of our Chicago towing accident attorneys so that we can collect all of the information needed to launch an investigation into your matter and review your legal options and strategy with you. Our lawyers operate strictly on a contingency manner, which means that we will never charge you upfront attorney’s fees and guarantee only to receive payment at the successful conclusion of your case. If we fail to secure a settlement or judgment in your favor, our services are completely free of charge.

Uncontrollable Bleeding Caused by XareltoIn 2011, the FDA (Food and Drug Administration) approved the blood thinner Xarelto (rivaroxaban) for prescription as an effective anticoagulant. The prescription medication is manufactured by Bayer and marketed in the United States by Janssen Pharmaceuticals, a subsidiary of Johnson & Johnson.

Almost immediately, many patients suffered its dangerous side effects including uncontrolled bleeding. While bleeding is not uncommon when taking anticoagulants, many personal injury attorneys, including Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers, allege that Xarelto is significantly more dangerous compared to other blood thinners because it lacks an antidote for reversing many of the effects of blood thinning.

That means during emergent situations, the individual might be at risk for a life-threatening irreversible bleeding issue including gastrointestinal or internal hemorrhaging. As a result, many patients prescribed the drug have filed lawsuits against the manufacturer and marketer on the grounds that they did not receive adequate warning against the dangers of using the blood thinning medication.

Marketed as Better Than Warfarin

Janssen Pharmaceuticals have marketed Xarelto as easier and better to use than other anticoagulants including Coumadin (warfarin). The manufacturer and marketer say the medication does not require routine blood monitoring like all other dangerous anticoagulants as a way to ensure that the patient’s blood levels remain in a therapeutic range.

Holding the Drug Company Accountable

Xarelto, like all other dangerous drugs, can cause significant harm and death to patients. When the pharmaceutical companies, doctors and other healthcare providers fail to adequately warn the patient about the drug’s associated risks, all parties involved can be held legally accountable.

In many incidences, filing a Xarelto lawsuit is the only sure way to obtain financial recompense for losses, harm and emotional injuries. Today, nearly 2,000 individuals have filed lawsuits against the manufacturer and marketer of Xarelto for numerous reasons including a failure to warn. These individuals receive compensation to cover their damages that include:

  • Financial hardship associated with emergency room visits, lost wages and ongoing care.
  • Mental and emotional distress of dealing with severe medical issues.
  • The associated expenses of a Xarelto wrongful death lawsuit including funeral costs and financial losses directly associated with uncontrolled bleeding.
  • Holding both Bayer and Janssen Pharmaceuticals financially accountable for manufacturing, marketing and releasing the extremely dangerous prescription medication to the public.

Common Complications and Side Effects

The most severe side effects that can potentially claim the life of the victim using Xarelto is internal bleeding that causes death. Many of the injured or killed patients were never told there was no cure (antidote) to reverse internal bleeding caused the prescription medication.

Other potential harm directly associated with using Xarelto include:

  • Life-threatening infections after knee or hip replacement surgery,
  • Swelling of the lower limbs (peripheral edema),
  • Cerebrovascular accident that involves cerebral hemorrhaging,
  • Decreased hemoglobin is required to carry oxygen in the patient’s red blood cells, and/or
  • Difficulty in breathing (dyspnea).

If your doctor has currently prescribed Xarelto for your condition, it is essential to avoid any activity where you could be bruised, cut or suffer internal/external bleeding. Sustaining any of these injuries could be life-threatening especially if you experience severe headaches, dizziness, weakness, confusion, persistent bleeding, bruising, vision changes and swelling. Pregnant women are especially susceptible to serious injury, complications and side effects of Xarelto.

Receiving Compensation

Nearly 2000 patients have filed lawsuits to seek financial compensation from the Xarelto manufacturer and marketer to cover their past, current and future medical expenses, lost wages, other financial losses and damages including pain and suffering. In some cases, surviving family members have filed a Xarelto wrongful death lawsuit as a way to punish the defendants and deter any other pharmaceutical manufacturer or marketer from acting similarly.

Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers have filed lawsuits and claims on behalf of many injured victims suffering damages and losses through bad prescription medications including Xarelto. Our attorneys accept Xarelto uncontrollable bleeding lawsuits on a contingency fee basis. This means we are only paid once we have provided you a favorable outcome by resolving your case through an out-of-court settlement or jury verdict in your favor.

Call our law offices today at (888) 424-5757 to schedule a free case review. Our personal injury attorneys working on your behalf can offer you various legal options to seek financial compensation and hold those legally responsible accountable for your losses.

Door Zone and How Doors Can Hurt BicyclistsBicyclists rarely receive the respect that they deserve from motorists and are often placed in precarious positions by the very laws meant to protect them and keep them out of the way of traffic. The Chicago bicycle accident attorneys of Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers frequently come across accidents that occur due to the failure of drivers to check for oncoming cyclists before opening their doors into the cyclists’ paths. Running into a car door can result in serious injuries and bicyclists involved in dooring accidents must often go through long and painful recoveries following their accidents. This is a shame when considering that these incidents can often be avoided.

The Door Zone and How it Affects Bicyclists

Plainly put, the door zone is the area where every bicyclist is at the greatest risk of being involved in a dooring collision, and this zone is unavoidable in many cases due to the laws and rules imposed on bicyclists to keep them out of the path of the cars and trucks that they must share the road with. While cyclists are given the same rights as motorists on the road, this often comes with a caveat. They are limited to the far right side of the road or bicycle lanes that take them directly into the path of an opening door.

The exact dimensions of the door zone depend on each vehicle parked on any particular street, but a safe distance is generally five feet to the left of parked vehicles. In order to place this distance between parked cars, bicyclists must become a nuisance to traffic, however, so most bicyclists are forced to ride with the risk of having a driver open a door in their paths.

Dooring Accidents are Common in Chicago

Bicycle crash data released for the year 2011 indicated that there was one dooring accident per day in the city. Data outside of the city was not included, meaning that the number of dooring injuries across the state is significantly higher. About 19.7% of all reported bicycle accidents were due to dooring, but many minor dooring incidents are never reported. While dooring accidents are far less likely to be fatal, our Chicago bike accident lawyers have noticed that they do often result in more serious injuries. Some of the injuries that may result from colliding with an open door include the following.

  • Broken bones due to the impact against the door itself or collision with the ground.
  • Lacerations due to broken glass, sharp metal or contact with the asphalt. Victims suffering from deep puncture wounds or lacerations need immediate medical attention and may die of blood loss if untreated. Additionally, the wounds are often exposed to dirt, debris and other objects that can introduce bacteria to the site, resulting in an infection.
  • Injuries to the neck, spine and back. The greatest risk of injury to the neck and back occurs when the bicyclist is thrown from his or her bike while maintaining forward momentum. Injuries range in severity and may be treatable with rehabilitative therapy. The worst case scenario is paralysis from the location of the injury down.
  • Traumatic brain injury. A blow to the head can cause micro tears or swelling within the brain and most of these injuries remain asymptomatic until weeks after the injury. If you’ve struck your head, it is important that doctors perform tests for a TBI even if you feel fine.

While many local ordinances do require bicyclists to ride as far to the right as possible, they also provide legal protection in that any driver who does not look before opening a door is liable for any injuries due to dooring injuries. If you’ve been injured because a driver was in a rush or failed to perform a proper check of his or her surroundings prior to opening a car door, contact us today to arrange a free consultation to learn more about your rights and how we can help you.

Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers is one of the most successful injury law firms in Illinois and has recovered compensation on behalf of hundreds of bicycle accident victims just like you. Our dedicated and knowledgeable lawyers are well equipped to handle your case and will review your legal options with you during your consultation to determine the course of action that will provide the greatest chance of ensuring your financial recovery.

Our Chicago bicycle accident lawyers only collect attorneys’ fees upon successful recovery of compensation and this means that you will never be required to pay for our services upfront. If we cannot secure damages on your behalf, our services are completely free of charge.

How to Prevent Forklift AccidentsForklifts are heavy and dangerous machines that can cause catastrophic damage to property and people when not operated in a safe manner. The Chicago forklift accident attorneys of Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers have noticed that poorly educated or trained operators are a common denominator in many accidents and that education and safety training can greatly reduce the risk of an accident. Loading docks and warehouses are busy places and there are many hazards and distractions that can quickly cause things to go bad if a driver is not aware of his or her surroundings or acts in an irresponsible or reckless manner.

Contributing Factors to Forklift Accidents

Following are some of the most common factors to consider when evaluating the cause of forklift injuries. Being aware of how these factors contribute to the overall safety of warehouses and loading docks can help prevent accidents by making drivers more vigilant when encountering these conditions and pitfalls.

  • Aisles that are not wide enough for safe forklift operation. When drivers are forced to make maneuvers in tight spaces, it greatly increases the likelihood of an accident.
  • Heavy traffic and proximity to other forklifts and people on the ground. When there are multiple drivers operating in range of one another, it can create a chaotic environment. The addition of people on the ground makes it even more difficult for a driver to keep tabs on where everyone is located while also focusing on his or her task at hand.
  • Obstructed paths and intersections. Attempts to avoid obstacles can result in collisions with other vehicles or injuries to workers who are occupying the aisle.
  • Trailers that have not been properly secured. The best way to secure a trailer is to chock the wheels and make sure that it is not connected to the semi-tractor at the time of loading or unloading. Drivers taking off during loading or unloading are a contributing factor in many accidents.

Our Chicago forklift injury lawyers often evaluate cases in which the education or training of the driver involved had a significant role in the accident. It is our hope that the following tips will help make some workplaces safer.

Tips for Safer Forklift Operation

  • Inspect your forklift every day before your shift to ensure that all moving parts are working properly, including the brakes, hydraulics, transmission, horn and steering. Many accidents are the result of equipment malfunction or failure during times when the equipment is needed.
  • Do not follow other forklifts too closely in order to allow yourself enough reaction time and stopping distance to avoid a collision.
  • When you are carrying a load that obstructs your forward view, drive in reverse at a safe speed. You should never operate machinery when you do not have a clear view of where you are going.
  • Never walk under raised forks and do not carry any person on the forks of a lift. This is asking for disaster.
  • Use your horn at every intersection and corner to notify others of your presence and to detect other forklifts, which may honk back.
  • If you are a pedestrian, always aim to make eye contact with forklift drivers passing near your location. This ensures that they know where you are and reduces the chance of an accident.
  • Do not carry uneven loads or loads placed on broken pallets. When the load is unstable, it can alter the forklift’s center of gravity and cause tip over accidents.
  • Always confirm that a trailer’s wheels have been chocked. Never trust another person’s word for it.

If you have been injured in a forklift accident, it is possible that your injuries require extensive medical treatment and rehabilitation. Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers specializes in recovering compensation on behalf of clients who have been injured on the job and we understand the difficulty of tending to your physical recovery as bills accumulate while you are unable to work. We will fight on your behalf to recover the value of your medical bills, lost wages, out of pocket expenses and pain and suffering.

Contact us today to speak with one of our experienced Chicago forklift accident attorneys to review your legal options during a risk free consultation. After we have investigated the circumstances leading to your accident, we can let you know how best to proceed and what to expect from your case. We understand that you may already have plenty of bills to worry about and will not add to your stress by requiring payment upfront. Our attorneys will only collect payment after securing compensation on your behalf, and if we fail to do so, our services will come at absolutely no cost to you.

Cameras in Patient RoomsThe Chicago nursing home abuse attorneys of Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers have represented far too many victims of nursing home abuse or neglect and the rising number of these cases over the last decade has been both concerning and depressing. Illinois lawmakers have taken an incredible step toward ending the current plague of abuse by passing a bill into law that will allow the families of nursing patients to install cameras and recording devices in the living areas of residents. Not only will this act as a strong deterrent to those who would mistreat our loved ones, but it will also provide indisputable evidence in the event patients do become victims of abuse or neglect.

The Need for Oversight

Nursing home abuse has become a topic of concern across the nation as more nursing facilities fall into the hands of for-profit organizations, which sacrifice quality of care to reduce costs and increase margins. By allowing families to observe what is going on inside of these facilities, the families will be able to notice when their loved ones are not receiving adequate care or when staff members treat them unfairly. Forms of neglect and abuse can include the following.

  • Neglecting patients who are at risk of developing pressure ulcers and failing to reduce this risk through regularly moving the patient.
  • Restraining residents without valid reasons for doing so.
  • Threatening patients when they complain about pain, discomfort and neglect.
  • Physically or sexually assaulting patients.
  • Not feeding patients regularly or providing nutrition that meets their unique needs.
  • Denying patients the assistance that they require when eating, drinking or getting in and out of bed.

Terms and Conditions of Nursing Home Surveillance

In order to address privacy concerns that arose over this bill, provisions were included that allow families and patients to decide for themselves whether to install the devices. Concerns over the cost to the nursing facilities themselves were also brought up and addressed in the final draft of the bill, which was signed into law by Governor Bruce Rauner on August 21, 2015. In order to install cameras or audio recording devices in patients’ rooms, the patients and their families must agree to the following.

  • If the patient lives with another resident, all parties must consent to the installation and use of the devices.
  • The nursing facility is not required to pay for the installation of cameras or audio recording devices or their continued operation. The patient or his or her family must be responsible for the cost of installing and operating the devices.
  • Nursing staff and visitors must be informed that the room is monitored.

Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan was a strong supporter of the legislation, which she claimed would provide added peace of mind to families who have loved ones in facilities across the state. There are about 5,000 complaints filed against nursing facilities every year and about 100 claims of serious neglect, physical abuse or the theft of patients’ physical property are found to be valid. Cameras could lead to the prosecution of more people guilty of these crimes by providing irrefutable evidence to courts during criminal proceedings and allow our Chicago nursing home neglect lawyers to build stronger cases.

Responding to the Wave of Abuse

If your loved one has become a victim to nursing home neglect or abuse, it is important that the negligent facility be held responsible and that your loved one is placed in a facility that will properly tend to his or her needs. The signs of abuse or neglect may be subtle at first and you should never be afraid to investigate when you feel that something is not right. It can also be incredibly difficult to trust the care of your loved one to anyone ever again after he or she has already been the victim of abuse.

Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers has represented the interests and needs of thousands of families impacted by nursing home negligence and we have the resources needed to help transition your loved one from an abusive environment into one that is more suitable to his or her needs while securing the compensation needed to pay for his or her care. Contact us today to arrange a risk free consultation so that we can evaluate the details of your case, review your legal options with you and help you on the path toward protecting your loved one from further harm.

Our Chicago nursing home abuse attorneys operate strictly on a contingency basis, which means our success is linked directly to the success of your case. If we are unable to secure damages on your behalf, our services will be free of charge.

IVC Filter LawsuitsThe Chicago IVC filter attorneys of Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers have been investigating numerous claims on behalf of clients who believe that the devices were directly responsible for severe bodily harm. In response to a mounting number of cases against C.R Bard on behalf of those who were injured by the Recovery and G2 IVC filter product lines, a multidistrict litigation has been formed to hear facts that are common to all of the cases involved. The result of this multidistrict litigation will have an impact on the cases currently being heard as well as any that will be filed in the future.

Clients Allege IVC Filters Cause Bodily Harm

The devices produced by C.R Bard and other IVC filter manufacturers are designed to prevent pulmonary embolism and other events that are the result of blood clots moving from the leg to other areas of the body. They work by trapping the clots and then holding them in place until they dissolve or break into smaller pieces that are able to pass through the bloodstream safely. C.R Bard is the largest manufacturer of these devices, and the first to be named in lawsuits that claim a new line of recoverable filters have been released with numerous defects that pose significant risks and that those risks were not communicated properly to patients.

Among the complications resulting from the defects are the tendency for the filters to splinter, puncture the vein wall and migrate to other areas of the body. Internal bleeding caused by the perforation of major blood vessels pose a fatal risk due to blood loss or the development of life threatening infections. The most serious injuries have resulted from the puncture or perforation of major organs due to the fracture or migration of the devices and victims have cited the need for emergency operative procedures to address the injuries.

What Multidistrict Litigation Means for Your Case

A multidistrict litigation is a means that courts take both to condense multiple cases against a common defenses into one pretrial hearing and to ensure that the end result of individual cases are more consistent. The C.R Bard MDL involves 22 cases to be heard in the U.S District Court of Arizona and will evaluate all of the common questions of fact between each case before sending the litigation back to each individual court. It is important to understand that while an MDL establishes facts to be heard in individual cases; those cases are still returned to the courts where they originated for a final verdict.

Our Chicago medical device liability attorneys are monitoring the ongoing multidistrict litigation and will be able to answer any questions that you have about how current facts and litigation may impact your own IVC filter case. If you have not taken advantage of our free case review yet, now is the time to contact us as we are currently reviewing and accepting cases while this mass tort continues to grow.

Damages Sought in Current Litigation

Current victims are seeking compensation in the form of the value of medical bills, wages lost due to the inability to work throughout their physical recovery, out of pocket expenses, pain and suffering and punitive damages. When evaluating your case, we will consider the current value of your injuries in addition to the long term impact on your finances. If the multidistrict litigation favors the plaintiffs, it may be possible that C.R Bard will make attempts to settle the matter outside of court. It is important that you never accept a settlement offer without first having it reviewed by an attorney, as the offers may affect your legal rights in the future, should you choose to accept them.

Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers is the leading personal injury firm in Illinois and we have successfully recovered compensation for thousands of clients who have been injured due to defective medical devices. Contact us today to learn more about how we can maximize your chance of a successful claim and your legal options in light of current developments with this mass tort. Our consultations and case reviews are completely risk free and if you are unable to travel to us, we will gladly meet you at your location of choice.

Our Chicago IVC filter attorneys only collect attorneys’ fees when we’ve successfully secured damages on your behalf and you are ensured that you will never be required to pay a fee at any point prior to receiving compensation. If you don’t receive compensation, neither will we.

Fatigue Contributed to Crash Involving Tracy MorganThe Chicago trucking accident attorneys of Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers have long known of the role that driver fatigue has on truck crashes and recent developments in the investigation into the cause of an accident that involved comedians Tracy Morgan and James McNair show that the driver’s violation of his hours of service requirement had a large role in the accident. While Tracy Morgan and the family of the deceased McNair have both come to agreements with Wal-Mart following the incident, the driver is still subject to mounting criminal charges that include multiple counts of vehicular homicide.

Driver Willfully Violated Hours of Service Law

Kevin Roper, the driver of the truck that caused the six vehicle accident, was in direct violation of a law that limits the amount of time that drivers may spend on the road and which requires an adequate rest period between each shift. The investigation revealed that prior to the accident, Roper had been awake for 28 hours straight and traveled 800 miles from his home before picking up his load in Delaware. When picking up the load, he was already nearing the end of the 14 hour limit and had the option to take a layover with pay instead of proceeding with the load as he did.

Had Roper taken the layover, he would have hit the road after a full night’s rest and been much more alert and focused on his duties. He chose to proceed, however, and was driving 20 mph over the posted speed limit at the time of the accident. Fatigue has effects that mimic drunkenness, including delayed reaction time and poor decision making. These are the contributing factors to why Kevin Roper was too slow to react to the brake lights ahead and it was simply too late by the time he took action to avoid the accident.

Driver fatigue is a common factor in many of the cases our Chicago truck injury lawyers take on, and this high profile case only further highlights the need of truck drivers and their employers to adhere to regulations and restructure driver pay so that drivers are not pressured to forge logs and work for longer periods than they should. In the aftermath of the accident, which involved six vehicles and 21 people, authorities have brought a long list of charges against Kevin Roper. These charges include speeding in a construction zone, vehicular homicide, assault by auto and the violation of regulations that limit the service hours of drivers.

Emergency Response Under Review

It was also revealed that the first responders to the scene of the accident were completely overwhelmed and that the overall response lacked coordination. Dispatchers delayed in sending additional resources and the teams arriving to the scene were sent from numerous jurisdictions and included emergency workers of varied experience levels. The disorganized response resulted in more serious injuries and may have contributed to the death of James McNair, who was trapped inside of the limousine. Due to a modification to the limo’s design, the only exit available was rendered inaccessible and responders needed to cut into the vehicle to pull the victims free.

All of these factors resulted in a slower response and extraction time. The safety board suggested that New Jersey consider training standards by which all emergency responders and volunteer organizations should abide by in the future to prevent the amount of confusion and disorder that prevailed during this incident from occurring in the future. Tracy Morgan and three other people suffered severe injuries and his injuries included a broken leg, nose and several ribs. Five other people reported injuries, all of which were considered minor.

Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers routinely represents the victims of similar accidents and have successfully recovered compensation on behalf of thousands of clients across Illinois for the payment of medical bills and the recovery of the value of lost wages, out of pocket expenses, pain and suffering and other expenses arising from the injuries suffered in their accidents. To learn more about your rights and how we can assist you in recovering the maximum amount of damage in your claim, contact us today to arrange a risk free case review.

Our Chicago trucking accident attorneys will be happy to travel to you if you are unable to meet with us at one of our offices and will go over all of your legal options with you during your case evaluation. Since we only work on a contingency basis, you can be assured that you will not be required to provide us with attorneys’ fees unless we are able to secure damages on your behalf through a settlement or judgment in your favor.

Preventing Dog BitesAccording to data compiled in 2008, nearly 75 million dogs have been welcomed into homes across the United States and these animals are often considered to be endeared members of our families. The Chicago dog bite attorneys of Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers have taken on thousands of cases on behalf of clients who have had unpleasant encounters with dogs due to the irresponsible behavior of their owners, serving as a reminder that dog ownership comes with responsibility. To make your home safer and to reduce the chances that you or a loved one is involved in an attack, consider the following tips to reducing your risk of being involved in a dog attack.

Protecting Yourself and Children From Strange Dogs

It is much easier to predict the behavior of an animal that lives with you and has been the subject of your love and attentive training for its entire life. Other peoples’ dogs may not have received the same treatment and strays can be dangerous for a variety of reasons, including exposure to disease or a protective instinct. Consider the following tips for you and your family when encountering dogs you are not familiar with.

  • Never approach a dog that is growling, snarling or acting defensive in any way. It is important to teach your children that these are signs that a dog is afraid or defending its territory and to back off when these signs are displayed.
  • Always obtain permission from a dog’s owner prior to interacting with the animal. Dogs often pick up on cues from their owners and are more likely to be open to contact when the owner shows signs of accepting you. Additionally, the owner is more likely to know the dog’s temperament and whether it is approachable.
  • When seeing a stray, it is best to keep your distance as the animal may be diseased or have rabies. If a dog charges, it will be faster than you are, so it will be impossible to outrun it. The best option is to find an object you can use as a distraction and feed it to the dog while you make your escape. Options include a backpack, coat, bicycle or any other object that will put distance between you and the dog.
  • If a dog does attack and knocks you onto the ground, the safest response is to curl into a ball, protecting your stomach by pulling your knees up and locking your fingers behind your neck to protect your neck. Once in this position, remain still and there is a high probability that the dog will no longer feel threatened and walk away after smelling or licking you.

How to Keep Your Dog From Biting Others

Our Chicago dog attack lawyers would rather prevent attacks from occurring altogether, as they can take an economic, emotional and physical toll on the owner of the dog and the victim of the attack. Follow these tips to make your own home safer for your family and guests if you own a dog.

  • Socialize your dog early and often so that it understands humans are friendly and not to be harmed. Dogs are more likely to act defensive in the presence of things that are not familiar to them, so familiarizing them with other people will make them less defensive.
  • Never punish your dog with your hand, as this establishes all hands as weapons. When your dog encounters another person who offers his or her hand, it may feel threatened and attack.
  • Consider taking your dog to training classes, even if you have experience training animals in the past. This will allow the dog a chance to socialize with other humans and dogs and to earn rewards and positive reinforcement for good behavior.
  • Try to keep your pet away from children under ten years of age, as many dog bites are the result of children playing too roughly with dogs and not understanding their boundaries. If a guest has a young child, it is important never to let the child near the animal without proper supervision. Establish rules for interaction as well, including never to pull, strike or push the dog in an aggressive manner.

It is the responsibility of dog owners to ensure that their animals will not harm other people and if you have been harmed by another person’s animal, you are entitled to collect compensation to pay for the treatment of your wounds. Many of the claims are paid for by the owners’ homeowner’s insurance companies, so in the event that the owner of the dog that bit you is a friend, you should not feel any guilt filing a claim.

Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers is the most dependable personal injury firm in Illinois and our Chicago dog bite attorneys have recovered compensation on behalf of thousands of clients. Contact us today to learn more about your legal options and how we can maximize your recovery.

Worn Out Truck TiresThe Chicago trucking accident attorneys of Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers are often required to evaluate cases to determine whether the root cause was the actions taken by a driver, the failure of the employer to maintain the vehicle, or a manufactural defect that resulted in a loss of control. It is not surprising that each party will try to exonerate itself of all blame during a claim, but the claims made by drivers that their tires are defective may not hold as much weight as you’d expect. Whenever a tire blows out, the first question that needs to be asked is whether the driver was operating within the bounds recommended for its use.

Excessive Speeds are a Detriment to Tire Life

A truck’s tires are the only part of the vehicle to make contact with the road and must bear its weight through the entirety of every journey. At high speeds, tires heat up and begin to wear down; increasing the chances they will crack, split or blow out during use. Most truck tires have been rated to sustain speeds of under 75 mph, but there are no longer any guarantees once that threshold is crossed. Long distance drivers often encounter speed limits up to 85 mph and 14 states allow vehicles to exceed 75 mph. With this in mind, truck drivers should not drive at unsafe speeds simply due to the fact that other vehicles are permitted to.

Almost 200 accidents occur each year in the United States due to truck tire failure and may result in catastrophic injuries or fatalities when occurring at speeds of 75 mph and higher. There is just no reason a driver should operate a vehicle as dangerous as a semi-tractor at these speeds in consideration of the power and momentum that are required to move the trucks and their cargo.

Drivers and Manufacturers Playing Blame Game

Trucking drivers and their employers have lodged many complaints against tire manufacturers that their products do not hold up on the open roads while the tire manufacturers often rebut that drivers push the tires beyond their reasonable limitations. It is obvious by the amount of debris that we see on the side of our roads from tire tread separation that there is a clear issue with the proper treatment and maintenance of truck tires, but tire manufacturers cannot be held accountable for reckless behavior and the failure of trucking companies to routinely inspect tires for signs of wear. Chances are that when an accident is the result of tire failure, the driver is responsible to some degree, even when it can be proven that the tires were defective.

Our Chicago truck injury lawyers are required to assess the true cause of every accident in order to disseminate the level of fault that the driver, his or her employer and the manufacturers of defective equipment bear and how each party’s actions contributed to our client’s injuries. Truck companies that have not maintained their vehicles properly often try to project their responsibility onto equipment manufacturers and it is our duty to only hold the party that is truly at fault liable for damages.

NHSTA Cites Driver Error in Majority of Tire Related Accidents

In an attempt to solve the dispute between trucking companies and tire manufacturers over the failure of tires on the road, an investigation was launched following the accusation that certain tires were prone to fail. While defective tires were occasional responsible for accidents, far more cases involved drivers pushing the tires beyond their recommended limitations. Even when traveling through states that permit speeds in excess of 75 mph, drivers should still be aware of the limitations of all their equipment and drive responsibly, even if that means staying ten miles per hour under the speed limit.

Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers is an award winning personal injury law firm that has been able to recover compensation for thousands of clients, including many victims of truck crashes. If you have been injured or lost a loved one in a trucking accident, contact us today to schedule a free consultation so that we can investigate the cause of your accident and pursue the maximum amount of compensation allowed by the Illinois law for the value of your medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering and out of pocket expenses. If your loved one was killed in an accident, you may be entitled to file a claim for wrongful death in addition to the value of your loved one’s pain and suffering at the time of his or her death.

Our Chicago trucking accident attorneys will never require attorney’s fees upfront for our services and if we are unable to recover compensation on your behalf for any reason at all, our services will be completely free of charge.

IVC Filters and their RisksIn the five year span between 2005 and 2010, the FDA investigated 921 claims by patients receiving IVC filter implants and their families, stating that the devices were responsible for serious injuries due to fragmentation, migration, and punctured organs. In light of the sea of litigation that followed the FDA’s warning regarding the risks associated with the devices, a study was conducted to determine the efficacy of the IVC filter and how well it compares to the traditional treatment options involving anticoagulants to shrink and break up the blood clots without the need for surgical intervention. The results of the study were surprising and suggest that IVC filters are not worth the risk.

Evaluation of Recurrent Pulmonary Embolism

In a study conducted by French physicians, four hundred patients were monitored to determine whether IVC filters were more effective than blood thinning medications at preventing pulmonary embolism, which results when a blood clot reaches the lungs. The general consensus among the researchers was the hypothesis that anticoagulants— which come with risks of their own, such as uncontrolled bleeding— would be far less effective in the reduction of recurrent pulmonary embolism and mortality. At the conclusion of the study, it was revealed that both treatment options had the same level of impact.

Two hundred patients were treated with retrievable IVC filters such as the C.R Bard and Cook filters that have been subjected to such expansive litigation over the last decade. The other two hundred were treated solely with anticoagulants. Three months later, six of the patients receiving the IVC filters had exhibited recurring pulmonary embolism compared with three patients who had been treated with blood thinners. The difference was negligible and revealed that both treatments had similar success rates and while blood thinners come with their own risk of adverse health events, their risk to patients is far less significant than that of the IVC filters.

IVC Device Manufacturers Coming Under Fire

It is a common misconception that the IVC filter is a recent invention because it was not until the mid-2000s that reports began to surface following serious injuries and fatal events associated with devices manufactured by Cook and C.R Bard. In reality, the IVC filter has existed since the 1960s and about 100,000 people have undergone treatment in which the devices were used. The recent onslaught of injuries and lawsuits is a referendum primarily on the current manufacturers of the device and the living victims and families of those who have died from their injuries allege that the devices are defective and that the manufacturers did not provide adequate warnings to patients about their risks.

Common injuries that occur when an IVC filter migrates or fractures are internal puncture wounds and perforations of internal organs and migration of the devices into critical organs including the heart and lungs. Prior to the development of retrievable IVC devices, the filters were permanently implanted and there may be a connection between the first retrievable filters being brought to market and the resulting injuries. None of the retrievable devices received approval in the United States and made it to market through the 510(k) provision that clinical trials and research would not be required for products that are similar to those which have received past approval.

In cases currently being heard across the country, the argument is being made that Bard knew as early as in 2003 that its Recovery IVC filter could break apart, migrate or puncture the vein wall or major organs. Its decision to continue marketing the product and failure to warn doctors or patients of the uncovered risks are grounds for a medical negligence lawsuit and some of the plaintiffs are seeking punitive damages on the basis that Bard knowingly allowed the devices to be sold after the risks were revealed.

To learn more about your rights as well as the status of current IVC litigation and how it may impact your case, contact the Chicago IVC attorneys of Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers. We would be happy to perform a free case review to determine whether you are entitled to compensation and to prepare a legal strategy that will maximize your recovery as we’ve done for thousands of our clients in the past. You will not be required to pay any legal fees or other costs for our services upfront and we will only collect payment once we’ve secured compensation on your behalf. If we fail to collect for you, our services are free.