IKEA Warns of Wall Chest Tip-over Injuries after Two Toddler Fatalities

Safety experts and Atlanta personal injury lawyers have been warning of the risk of child fatalities in furniture tip over accidents for many years. Last year, two toddlers were killed in furniture tip over accidents involving an IKEA dresser unit model. Now, IKEA North America is telling millions of owners of these dressers that these chests must be firmly anchored to the walls in order to prevent accidents of the type that killed the two toddlers.

IKEA has confirmed at least 14 tip over incidents that resulted in four injuries. The company says that the chest must be firmly anchored to the walls, in order to prevent injuries like these.

According to the US Consumer Product Safety Commission, one fatality involved a two-year-old boy in Pennsylvania who died in February last year, when a MALM chest of drawers fell on him. The boy was pinned to a bed, and died from his injuries. The second fatality involved a two-year-old child from Washington, who was killed in June of last year when a similar chest fell on him. According to IKEA North America, it has three other reports of child fatalities since 1989 involving tip overs of other models of chests. The company is offering free wall-mounting repair kits for 27 million dressers. 

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Feds Warn of Hacking, Safety Risks Involving Self-Driven Cars

The hype over self-driven cars continues to increase, even as the federal officials warn that automakers must innovate while keeping in mind concerns involving privacy and hacking.

Hackers recently proved that they were capable of hacking a car remotely, and operating it. In a daring stunt, they managed to seize control of a Jeep Cherokee, and operated it from the comfort of their living room. Cyber security concerns are even higher in the case of self-driven cars that are very vulnerable to such malicious practices. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) chief recently said that issues like privacy and hacking must be priorities, as automakers innovate further in the development of cars that will drive themselves.

NHTSA has assured the auto industry that it will share some of the vehicle-to-vehicle technology that self-driven cars would be based on. The government also wants a number of parties including software developers and telecommunications companies to work together to find solutions to cyber security threats and privacy breaches in these cars. The agency wants the auto industry to take safety lessons from the airline industry.

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print this article Posted By Robert Katz In Automotive Technology | Permalink

Take Precautions to Prevent Heat Stroke-Related Child Fatalities

Parents, caregivers and the community at large all have a role to play in helping prevent heat stroke-related fatalities involving children left behind in cars during summer.

Those fatalities are already at record numbers in 2015. So far this year, there have been 11 fatalities involving children who were left behind in heated cars, by parents or caregivers. Recently, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and Safe Kids Worldwide commemorated National Heat Stroke Prevention Day, and the agency specifically focused on parents and caregivers, asking them to take precautions to prevent such fatalities in vehicles.

NHTSA has also released a new technical report that would help auto manufacturers in the development of appropriate technologies to help prevent such fatalities. There is no doubt that there is much that manufacturers can do to help prevent such needless fatalities every year. From warning systems to alarms and special child car seats, manufacturers are already working on, or have introduced technology to help parents prevent such fatalities. These devices however, are intended for use as add-ons, and their effectiveness is currently being debated.

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print this article Posted By Robert Katz In Children , Wrongful Death | Permalink

"Never Events" in the Operating Errors Still Occur

Certain major errors during surgery are so rare that they are called “never events”. While such medical errors are rare, they do continue to occur in hospitals across the country.

According to a new review of surgical errors published in the JAMA Surgery Journal, approximately one out of every 100,000 surgeries involves a wrong site error. In a wrong site error, the doctor either operates on the wrong side of the patient’s body, on the wrong body part, or even on the wrong person.

The good news is that these “never events” are very rare. The bad news is that there is very limited data on these errors, which makes devising strategies to control them very challenging. For example, researchers had very little data available on the number of fires that break out in operating rooms during surgery. When there are only a few rare events, data collection is difficult, and researchers find it more challenging to develop strategies to prevent these errors.

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Simulation Shows Teen Drivers Have Higher Accident Risks

Even after a teenage driver has acquired a license, his or her driving skills may continue to be below that of older drivers. A recent study put a number of teenage motorists who had acquired a full license through a simulated driving test, and found that many of the teen drivers crashed in the task.

The teenagers went through the 35-minute driving assessment which included replications of the most common accident scenarios. Approximately four out of every 10 newly licensed drivers crashed in the test, and according to researchers, this suggests that they lacked the critical driving skills that they needed to stay safe while driving in a real-world environment. Data also showed that approximately 29% of the adult drivers crashed in the test, while among teen drivers, the crash rate was more than 49%.

This suggests that even after they obtain a full license, most teen motorists lack the critical driving abilities required to stay safe on the roads. Teenagers who had just obtained a license, the researchers found, were good at the basics, but lacked the ability to identify accident cues in their environment, and react immediately to such hazards. That placed them and their passengers at a high risk of being involved in a motor vehicle collision. 

 

 

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Filing a Claim against an Aggressive Driver

Aggressive driving is defined as driving that involves a combination of one or more traffic offenses that place other motorists at risk of an accident. If you have been involved in a motor vehicle accident involving an aggressive driver, it's important to understand your legal rights and hire the best attorney.

An aggressive driver could be engaged in a number of different driving practices that threaten his own safety, and the safety of people around him.  Aggressive drivers often don’t consider the human element, and have little regard for the safety of other motorists, cyclists and pedestrians.  Simply stated, a motor vehicle in the hands of an aggressive driver turns into a dangerous weapon.

Typically, the following driving behaviors may be included in the definition of aggressive driving.

  • Speeding. This includes not only driving above the posted speed limits, but also driving at speeds that are excessive for the prevailing traffic and weather conditions.
  • Improper lane changing including failure to signal intent before changing lanes.
  • Improper passing including failure to use turn signals, or passing on the shoulder or over a double yellow line.

All of these above mentioned behaviors can increase the risk of an accident, but aggressive driving can also include any other types of negligent driving that places motorists at risk.  

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print this article Posted By Robert Katz In Auto Accident Claims | Permalink

Drunk Driver Warning for Fourth of July

Independence Day is the holiday highlight of the summer, but it’s also the deadliest weekend of the year where traffic accidents are concerned.

So before the parades roll out, the cymbals clash, and sparklers light the sky, we want to issue an important word of warning to all our clients, neighbors, and friends in the community: people will be driving under the influence of alcohol this weekend.

 

Each year, DUI ranks as the #1 cause of death for travelers during the Fourth of July. These are preventable deaths caused by the careless decisions of revelers who take the party too far. You don’t have to be one of their victims.

Please keep your family safe this holiday. Give our guidelines a glance and put them into practice all weekend long.

How to Spot a Drunk Driver

Fireworks are easy to see — they light up the whole sky. Drunk drivers aren’t always so obvious, but by keeping a careful lookout, you can sometimes spot them before it’s too late.

Here’s what to look for in other motorists:

• Driving at a very slow speed

• Taking extremely wide turns

• Weaving in and out of lanes

• Unaware that their headlights are off

• Narrowly avoiding accidents or objects in the road

• Straddling the highway dividers

• Repeatedly entering the road’s shoulder

• Stopping at green lights

• Running red lights

• Using turn signals that don’t make sense

• Any other signs of dangerous, reckless, or unfocused driving

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Defective Takata Airbags Now Linked to 105 Injuries, Six Deaths

A committee that is currently investigating car recalls linked to defective Takata airbags says that the Japanese auto parts supplier recently decided to update recall information. The updated toll from the airbags defect is now 105 injuries and 6 fatalities.

The earlier toll was 64 injuries and five fatalities linked to the malfunctioning airbag. However, since then, Takata has apparently identified at least 40 more incidents of malfunctioning airbags resulting in serious injuries, including one that resulted in at least one death.

The defect causes the airbags to shoot off potentially dangerous fragments that can seriously injure occupants in the vehicle. Occupants are at risk of serious injuries, including eye injuries, facial injuries and other injuries as a result of being hit in the face by these pieces of shrapnel.

Overall, more than 20 million vehicles have been recalled because of the malfunctioning airbags. Meanwhile, Takata is also struggling with a scarcity of replacement inflators for the recalled vehicles. The company has admitted that more replacement inflators are required to replace the defective inflator that caused the problem. Takata is also under fire for its slow-moving recalls. US regulators are currently considering extra measures to ensure that owners of these vehicles are safe. The Japanese company was hit with a $14,000 per day fine for its lack of cooperation with federal regulators, and since then, has begun to cooperate more enthusiastically with the feds.

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Tire Care Critical to 15-Passenger Van Safety

All motorists need to pay attention to tire safety. However, in the case of 15- passenger vans, the need to take precautions to prevent tire failures and blowouts is even more severe. That's because these vans are very likely to be involved in a potentially fatal rollover during a tire blowout.

The design of the 15-passenger van makes it much more susceptible to a rollover. These vehicles have a higher center of gravity that places them at a higher risk of flipping over during an accident. According to some statistics, 15-passenger vans with between 10 and 15 occupants on board are approximately 3 times more likely to be in a rollover accident than vans that have a maximum of five occupants. The design which is longer and taller places these vehicles at a high risk of a rollover.

When you take a van that already has these design deficiencies, and add bad tires to the mix, the consequences can be disastrous. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) is specifically calling on owners of these vans to pay special attention to tire safety this summer. These vans are typically used very heavily during summer by church groups, sporting clubs, youth groups, summer camp operators, and other organizations for trips.

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Georgia Motorcycle Accident, Fatality and Injury Data for 2013

According to recently released statistics by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, there was a significant 6% drop in the number of people killed in motorcycle accidents across the country in 2013.There was also a perceptible drop in the number of people injured in these accidents.

Data released by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration finds a total of 4,668 motorcyclist fatalities in accidents in 2013. That was a drop from 4,986 fatalities the previous year. There were 88,000 motorcycle injuries reported in 2013, which was a 5% drop from the 93,000 motorcyclist injuries recorded the previous year. In Georgia, there were 116 motorcycle accident fatalities in 2013.

The data also seems to prove the effectiveness of motorcycle helmets in saving lives in accidents. In 2013, helmets helped more than 1,000 motorcyclists get home safely. However, if all motorcyclists involved in accidents that year had been helmeted, at least 750 deaths could have been prevented. According to the data, helmets are approximately 37% effective in helping reduce the risk of fatality to motorcycle riders, and 41% effective in preventing deaths of motorcycle passengers.

Out of the 116 motorcycle accident fatalities in 2013 in Georgia, 92% were wearing a helmet at the time of the accident, while 4% were non-helmeted. It's also important to remember that these statistics don't make any mention of whether the persons were wearing helmets that met specifications set by the Department of Transportation. It's important to wear a helmet that has the “DOT-approved” label certifying that the helmet adheres to guidelines for motorcycle helmet and testing set by the Department Of Transportation.

 

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