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Personal Injury Law Blog

Factors that lead to plane crashes put lives at risk

Aircraft are built to withstand high winds, cold and hot temperatures that vary quickly and to hold thousands of pounds of weight. They have complex electrical systems and highly trained pilots. Despite this, planes do crash often enough for those crashes to cause concern among travelers.

There are dozens of reasons why something could go wrong before, during or after a flight. Some of the possible causes of plane crashes include pilot errors, structural problems, Federal Aviation Administration regulation violations, negligence of Federal Air Traffic Controllers and faulty equipment. On-board violence and other issues may also result in a crash.

Aviation injuries present complex legal issues

As our world grows ever more interconnected, its dangers also grow more complicated. Modern people must consider threats that many of our historical predecessors never even thought about. One such danger that faces many Americans each year is the possibility of suffering injuries or even dying in an aviation accident.

While airplanes generally enjoy an impressive safety record, due to the level of training a pilot must undergo to obtain his or her pilot's license, accidents do still happen. When aviation accidents do occur, they present complicated legal issues for those who suffer harm in them.

Did a nursing home cover up your loved one's abuse?

It's always a difficult decision when you need to place a loved one in an assisted living or nursing home facility. In many cases, doing so is a medical or financial necessity. Not everyone with an elderly parent can retire or afford to hire around-the-clock in-home nursing staff. Nursing homes exist to provide care to those who are no longer able to do so for themselves. You likely did research before placing your loved one in a facility, trying to ensure that you found a place that was safe, clean and respectful. Unfortunately, Illinois has a poor history when it comes to nursing home care.

It only takes one abusive aide, nurse or orderly to traumatize or injure your loved one. Discovering signs of abuse on an elderly loved one can be heart-wrenching. Realizing that the facility has covered up the issue of abuse or neglect is even worse. Unfortunately, some nursing homes have a culture of silence or active cover-ups when it comes to mistreatment of residents. Medical notes and records may get altered to include explanations, however thin, for injuries or bedsores. Records about who worked when may become unavailable or even get changed to make it harder to find the truth.

Power morcellators can kill, patients suffer greatly before dying

Patients who seek medical care assume that their doctors have the proper tools to care for them. While there are countless tools that doctors can use that don't have ill effects on patients, there are some that can kill them. When a procedure or device is associated with risks, the patient must be told of the dangers and then consent to the procedure with those risks in mind.

One device that has proven especially deadly is the power morcellator. This device was used frequently up through a black box warning issued by the Food and Drug Administration in 2014 to remove fibroids from the uterus. It was also used in hysterectomies.

Distracted driving may be far more common than you think

The use of cellphones, smartphones and other devices seems ubiquitous today. The National Safety Council says that distracted driving related to the use of technological devices is an epidemic. For that reason, the safety advocacy group has declared April as Distracted Driving Awareness Month. Many people in the Chicago area may be aware that distracted driving occurs - but most people are likely unaware how frequently the problem occurs on our roads.

In late 2016 and early 2017, Zendrive conducted a large-scale study to determine how widespread the problem has become, according to KXLY News. Between December 2016 and February of this year the driving analytics company analyzed 570 million car trips that traveled a combined 3.6 billion miles. The study revealed that distracted driving is not as occasional as you may think.

Can I recover financial damages if my spouse was injured?

If your husband or wife suffered a severe, debilitating or disabling injury, you will probably lose certain marital benefits that you've enjoyed since the onset of your marriage. Some of those benefits are readily apparent, like if your spouse regularly cooked your dinners and performed other household chores. Other benefits may not be apparent, like the loss of society and companionship.

In legal terms, when a spouse is injured - and the non-injured spouse suffers the loss of marital benefits - lawyers refer to it as the loss of consortium. An uninjured spouse can incorporate his or her loss of consortium claims into the injured spouse's personal injury claims in many cases.

Pharmacy Negligence Debate Revived after Chicago Investigative Report Reveals Flaws

In the last post, this blog discussed a Chicago Tribune investigation that uncovered problems with filling prescriptions in pharmacies throughout the Chicagoland area. A reporter sought to have two prescriptions filled at more than 250 area pharmacies. The common medications are known to interact with each other, producing severe muscle breakdown in the human body.

This is no minor issue, as the effect of the harm from the drug interaction could be fatal. Roughly 52 percent of the pharmacies filled the prescriptions without even providing the reporter with any warnings of the potential harm that the combination of the drugs could produce.

Officials, Including Senator Dick Durbin, Speak Up

The story gained national attention -- including calls for reform at the state and national levels to better protect consumers from medication errors, according to the Chicago Tribune. Carmen Catizone, executive director of the National Association of Boards of Pharmacy, says that each state should pass stronger laws to ensure that pharmacists counsel patients when filling their prescriptions.

Dangerous Drug Combinations are Flying Under the Radar

People who have experience taking medications will vividly remember physicians or pharmacists detailing the precautions that need to be taken with these medications. People receive instructions about which foods to avoid and to avoid drinking alcohol while taking the medications because of the dangerous side effects that can result from certain interactions.

In addition, when people take more than one medication, these medications can interact with each other in dangerous ways. These side effects can have serious impacts on a patient's health. It is the pharmacist's job to avoid these interactions. That is what makes the following information particularly concerning.

Legal liability for medication errors that cause injury or death

We all rely on medical providers to carry out their duty to follow accepted standards of professional care to keep us healthy and safe. Unfortunately, when a doctor, nurse, pharmacist or other medical personnel breaches that duty in the prescribing or administration of a drug, a medication error may cause severe injury or death.

What Chicago and Illinois has done to keep cyclists safe

Statistics maintained by the Illinois Department of Transportation reveal that thousands of cyclists are injured in crashes on an annual basis. The most recent statistics are from 2014, revealing 3,014 crashes resulting in injuries and 27 crashes resulting in deaths.

In response, the State of Illinois and some of its municipalities have taken measures to help keep people on bicycles safe. These steps as well as a greater public awareness of bicycle laws can help prevent tragedies from happening.

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