May 6th, 2016
A recent single-car crash that claimed the life of one man serves as a somber reminder of the dangers of single-vehicle accidents. The accident early in the morning, on Highway 53. The vehicle left the roadway and caught fire. The driver could not exit the vehicle, and he perished in the blaze. The recent fatal single-car accident is, unfortunately, far from an atypical scenario. Single-vehicle accidents are deadlier than accidents involving multiple vehicles, accounting for sixty-five percent of all fatal motor vehicle accidents in the United States.
Because one-vehicle accidents are so often fatal, much effort has gone into studying the accidents and looking for the reasons why they happen. This research has led to a discussion of the things that drivers can do to prevent single-car accidents. Many single-vehicle accidents result from things that drivers have some degree of choice over, such as drinking alcohol, speeding, driving while drowsy, and texting or other distractions. The number of single-vehicle accidents could be reduced by drivers who make safe choices like staying sober so that they can drive home, calling a cab or riding with a designated driver if they choose to drink, getting sufficient rest before making a road trip, following posted speed limits, and choosing to focus on the road instead of allowing themselves to be distracted.
While some single-vehicle accidents could be prevented, research has also shown that other single-car crashes are caused by things that are completely outside of the driver’s control. For example, rainy weather brings with it slippery roads and poor visibility which can cause drivers to lose control. Mechanical defects can also cause sudden and unpredictable changes in vehicle function that could cause a driver to lose control.
Although some information has been gathered regarding single-vehicle wrecks, many individual single-car crashes remain surrounded in mystery. It is harder for investigators and authorities to piece together what happened to cause any given single vehicle accident than it is for them to make sense of the aftermath of a multiple vehicle collision. One reason for this is that in many fatal, single-car accidents, the sole eyewitness is the driver who died in the wreck. When this occurs, it can be challenging for police and investigators to be able to say with any certainty what happened. Also, the victim’s family receives no meaningful explanation regarding the loss of their loved one, which can make mourning their loss even harder.
Giddens Law Firm, P.A.: Protecting Mississippi Accident Victims
If you were injured or someone that you love died in a single-vehicle crash, contact a Mississippi automobile accident attorney right away. Your rights and interests are at stake, and it is important that you have your case evaluated by someone who can help you. During this uncertain and challenging time in your life, it can be a great relief to have someone knowledgeable by your side to represent your interests. To learn more, call the Mississippi Automobile Accident Attorneys at the Giddens Law Firm, P.A. at (601) 355-2022.
May 4th, 2016
Sometimes, statistics can be shocking. For example, in 2014, one person died on the job every other hour, every single day for the entire year? The total number of on-the-job deaths in 2014 amounted to 3.3 deaths per one hundred thousand workers, which is a slight increase from the 3.4 deaths per hundred thousand workers that occurred in 2013. The aforementioned numbers only account for deaths that happened on the job. The numbers do not include any deaths that resulted from job-related sicknesses like black lung disease.
The consensus among the people who study workplace injuries and fatalities is that workplace deaths continue to increase because there are not stiff enough penalties to deter employers from utilizing dangerous or even illegal labor practices like failing to provide necessary safety equipment or have adequate staff on duty to allow for sufficient breaks. Workplace deaths are not distributed evenly throughout the United States. For example, Mississippi residents may be surprised to learn that their home state had 7.1 workplace deaths per hundred thousand people in 2014, which put it behind only four other states as the fifth most dangerous state to work in.
As you might imagine, not all of the workplace injuries and deaths were evenly distributed among different types of work. Logging, fishing, oil drilling, and construction caused the most deaths, and falls were the most common type of workplace death. Unfortunately, 2014 was a record-setting year for workplace deaths among older workers, which includes workers over the age of fifty-five. One thousand six hundred and ninety-one older adults died on the job that year. There are even some workplace deaths that are not accidents – just over eight hundred workplace murders took place in 2014.
The increase in workplace deaths in 2014 occurred despite some progress towards improving job safety. For example, enforcement has increased, along with some fines. One significant development allows OSHA to adjust its federal civil fines for inflation, which increases maximum employer penalties significantly. It is possible that moving forward; these increased penalties will have a deterrent effect on companies who do not take safety seriously.
Giddens Law Firm, P.A.: Support for Workplace Accident Victims and Families
If you got hurt at work or if you lost someone that you love in a workplace accident, do not wait – reach out for help right away. After you get medical attention, call a workplace injury attorney and speak to them about your accident. Your attorney can help you make sense of what happened and they can work with you to develop safe work practices. What’s more, they can help you to formulate a plan for presenting your case in court, if need be. If you have questions related to Mississippi workplace accident law, the Mississippi Workplace Accident Attorneys of the Giddens Law Firm, P.A. could possibly help you. Please call our office today, at (601) 355-2022, to learn more.
April 29th, 2016
A recent accident in Arkansas claimed the life of a Mississippi man. The crash occurred when the man lost control of his car and collided with a vehicle on the other side of the road. The weather might have played a role in this crash. It was raining and the road was wet at the time of the accident. Other accidents occurred throughout the nearby area that day, and wet roads may have contributed to causing those wrecks, too.
Rainy weather and wet roads are just two of the possible hazards that drivers may encounter on the roadway. Wildlife and highway defects are other examples of things that can contribute to causing automobile accidents. Rain increases the risk of car accidents in two ways. When it is raining, visibility is reduced, and drivers may have difficulty seeing nearby vehicles, intersections, road signs, and other things that they need to see to drive safely. Also, road surfaces may become slippery, which increases the likelihood that a driver will lose control of his or her vehicle. Some road surfaces provide better traction in wet weather than others do, and when there is water on the road surface, hydroplaning may occur.
When it is raining, and even after the rain has stopped and the road is wet, drivers can implement a few safe driving practices to increase their chances of arriving at their destinations safely. Slowing down can give you more time to see vehicles, signs, and other things and it can reduce the likelihood that your vehicle will hydroplane. Stopping a car on a wet surface requires more distance, so leave yourself plenty of time. Also, leaving plenty of room between your vehicle and the vehicle in front of you will give you more time to react to that vehicle’s movements. Keeping a safe distance is always important, but it is even more crucial when the road is wet, and there is an increased risk that that vehicle will hydroplane, swerve, or make other unanticipated movements.
Other road hazards include potholes and rough patches, poor roadway design, inadequate lighting, and confusing signs. Older roads are more likely to contain road hazards because road design has evolved to create increasingly safer roads. Inadequate road maintenance can also increase the risk of automobile accidents. Road surfaces experience considerable wear and tear, and highway budgets do not permit state and local governments to repair and resurface all of the roads that need attention right away, so unsafe conditions may exist for some time before work crews can make the necessary repairs.
Giddens Law Firm, P.A.: Support for Mississippi Automobile Accident Victims
If you got hurt in a car crash, the weather might have played a role in causing the accident. Whether or not the weather was a factor in your accident, you would benefit from working with a Mississippi Automobile Accident Attorney. The insurance claims process can be more time-consuming than you might imagine. Your attorney can help you resolve your claim while you focus on your health and healing. To learn more, call the Mississippi Automobile Accident Attorneys of the Giddens Law Firm, P.A., at (601) 355-2022.
April 24th, 2016
A seaman from Mississippi filed a lawsuit against his former employer and another company. The man claims that he was operating a high-pressure lance on a drillship when he fell, sustaining severe injuries. In his lawsuit, the plaintiff alleges that the defendants did not give him the gear and equipment that he needed to do his job safely, among other things. The lawsuit also touches on issues involving whether there were unsafe working conditions on the drillship and whether the ship’s crew was adequate.
Drillships are one type of offshore oil and gas drilling rig. These enormous and powerful machines drill holes for the extraction of oil and gas. Drillships and other offshore oil and gas drilling rigs present significant safety hazards to the people who work on them. Between 2001 and 2010, there were over eight hundred fires and explosions on offshore drilling rigs. One thousand three hundred and forty-nine injuries and sixty-nine deaths occurred in these workplaces during that same period.
Some of the hazards that are present in an offshore drilling work environment are slippery surfaces, unfavorable weather conditions, heavy machinery, fires, explosions, and falls. As is the case in any workplace environment that involves the use of machinery, equipment failure can cause injury or death and improperly maintained equipment presents an increased risk of harm to the workers who use it. Crew members who do not receive proper training and support are at risk for injury, and they also put other workers at risk because they are unable to work safely or to support their co-workers in doing so. There are many ladders and stairs on a drillship, and falls from ladders, staircases, and other tall pieces of equipment may cause severe and sometimes fatal injuries. Oil and natural gas are combustible, so fires and explosions are a very real risk in offshore drilling workplaces.
If you work on a drillship and you get hurt, seek medical attention right away. Prompt treatment ensures that you can know the full extent of your injuries and begin receiving essential medical care right away. As is the case with any injury, immediate treatment provides the best possible chance at a full recovery. Missing work because of an injury could deplete your financial resources quickly. In addition to helping you recover sooner so that you can return to work, seeking treatment right away helps provide the documentation that will support your claim for damages.
Giddens Law Firm, P.A.: Supporting Mississippi Workplace Injury Plaintiffs
If you experienced a workplace accident in an offshore drilling workplace, you are not alone. Offshore drilling is dangerous work, and employers must do their best to prevent harm from befalling the employees who work for them. The Mississippi Workplace Injury Attorneys at the Giddens Law Firm, P.A. may be able to help you pursue a worker’s compensation claim against the parties who are responsible for your injuries. A worker’s compensation claim could help you recover both physically and financially after your accident. To learn more about how we may be able to help you, please call our office today, at (601) 355-2022.
April 10th, 2016
Sometimes, a car accident will cause traffic to back up for miles. When this happens, there is, of course, the immediate danger that other vehicles will collide with the crashed cars and pile onto the wreck. There is also the possibility that accidents will occur in the line of backed up traffic, especially if the drivers of some vehicles do not notice that there is traffic stopped ahead of them.
Last year, a horrific accident occurred when a tractor-trailer slammed into traffic that was backed up because of an accident. The wreck claimed the lives of five nursing students from Georgia who were traveling in two separate vehicles. Just recently, the company that employed the driver who is responsible for the deadly crash reached settlements in some of the wrongful death lawsuits that were filed by the victims’ families.
It is possible that this tragedy was the result of a poor hiring decision by Total Transportation of Mississippi. The company hired the driver, John Wayne Johnson, even though his previous employer had fired him for falling asleep at the wheel. As far as this accident is concerned, Johnson admitted that the deadly wreck was his fault. He claims that he was awake when the crash occurred, but he is unable to explain why he did not notice the traffic that had stopped ahead of him. Johnson also claims that his truck has a collision warning system that beeps if it gets too close to other vehicles. Johnson says that he did not hear the warning system before the crash. He also does not remember colliding with the two passenger vehicles that the nursing students were riding in, but he does remember hitting the back of a tractor-trailer that had stopped in traffic in front of those two vehicles.
This tragic accident is a sobering reminder that chain reaction accidents can occur at any time. Stop and go traffic contributes to many chain reaction accidents, and this one is no exception. Drivers can avoid some chain reaction accidents, but that is not always the case. In the wreck that killed the five nursing students, there was nothing they could have done that would have prevented the wreck. They were sitting in traffic, completely at the mercy of the drivers that were approaching them from behind. In other situations, drivers might be able to avoid chain reaction accidents by paying close attention to the driving conditions around them at all times, and being aware of traffic stopped ahead of them and slowing down as they approach it. Also, whether you are in stop and go traffic or traffic that is moving freely, be sure to leave adequate space between your vehicle and the vehicle in front of you.
Giddens Law Firm, P.A.: Mississippi Trucking Accident Attorneys
If you were injured or you lost someone that you love in a crash involving a tractor-trailer or other commercial vehicle, it is important that you contact a Mississippi trucking accident attorney right away. The company that owns the truck has a team of lawyers and other professionals working hard on their behalf, and you deserve to have an experienced professional in your corner to represent your interests. To learn more, call the Mississippi Trucking Accident Attorneys at the Giddens Law Firm, P.A. at (601) 355-2022.
April 1st, 2016
One option for birth control is the intrauterine device or IUD. There are two main categories of intrauterine devices, those made with hormones and those made without hormones. Mirena is one of only three types of hormonal IUDs that are on the market. Marketing materials for the Mirena IUD target mothers who already have children, touting the product as a simple, reversible, no-hassle birth control method. The Mirena IUD has caused some serious health issues, and there have been over one thousand lawsuits filed against the manufacturer of Mirena since 2011 due to damages and losses that may have been caused by the product.
A recent lawsuit involving the Mirena IUD claims that the device caused Intracranial Hypertension, a condition which is also known as pseudotumor cerebri, or the dangerous and life-threatening buildup of fluid around the brain. When fluid builds up around the brain, the pressure inside of the skull becomes abnormally high, causing symptoms that include vision problems, severe headaches, and inability to tolerate light. The woman who filed the lawsuit experienced these symptoms and had a lumbar puncture performed to remove the excess fluid from her skull.
Other lawsuits alleging harm caused by the Mirena IUD involve situations where the IUD migrated after it was implanted, causing complications. Some of the damages suffered by plaintiffs in Mirena lawsuits include uterine perforation, miscarriage, organ damage, and ectopic, or tubal, pregnancies. Many of the lawsuits claim that the warnings provided with the product are insufficient and do not adequately communicate the risks associated with Mirena to those patients who are considering using it. At least one lawsuit alleges that the harm caused by the Mirena IUD resulted in a wrongful death. The plaintiff in the wrongful death lawsuit had a Mirena IUD implanted in 2009, and in 2013, she gave birth to a stillborn son. In her lawsuit, she states that the device became embedded in her uterine wall, greatly increasing the risk of harm to her fetus when the device did not prevent pregnancy like it was supposed to.
There have been many lawsuits that allege harm caused by the Mirena IUD, and the United States Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation considered the possibility of consolidating the claims into a class action lawsuit. In 2014, the panel declined to consolidate the claims. The panel did not combine the claims into a class action lawsuit because the individual claims are not so similar to each other that it would make sense to treat them as a group. There are various types of harm alleged in the current lawsuits, and, for now, each claim will be handled individually. It is possible that claims could be consolidated in the future as new plaintiffs continue to come forward and file lawsuits.
Giddens Law Firm, P.A.: Support for Those Harmed by Defective Products
Medical devices like the Mirena IUD often provide some health benefits, but the patients who use them are also at risk for serious side effects. If you believe that you are experiencing an injury or illness in connection with your use of a Mirena IUD, seek medical attention right away. If your IUD played a role in your injury or illness, the Mississippi Products Liability Attorneys of the Giddens Law Firm, P.A. may be able to help you. Please call our office today, at (601) 355-2022, to learn more.
March 30th, 2016
A recent barge accident on the Mississippi River has claimed the life of a worker. The accident occurred near the U.S. 190 bridge. While little information is known about this particular accident because it happened very recently and because it is currently under investigation, this tragedy calls attention to the dangers of working on the river. Many workers work on or near the river every day, and, just as is the case with any other type of workplace, there is the potential that injury or even death may occur at work.
The Mississippi River is a very busy waterway, with barge and towboat traffic that can be rather heavy at times. The towboats and barges that operate on the Mississippi and on other major waterways can be dangerous places to work, especially in crowded areas where there are many vessels in close proximity to each other on the water. Water and weather conditions can change suddenly, which can increase accident risk dramatically. Workplace accidents on barges and towboats can occur when vessels collide, as well as when vessels are moving along the waterway and even when they are docked or at anchor. Slips, falls, and other sudden injuries can occur on barges and towboats, as can injuries associated with lifting heavy things and operating machinery.
Since workers on barges and towboats can be seriously injured or killed, it is important that these workers and their families understand that the worker’s compensation laws which govern most workplace injuries do not apply to individuals who are injured while they are working on navigable waters. When a worker is injured while working on navigable waters, a law called the Jones Act serves as the means by which the injured worker can collect damages.
The Jones Act differs from ordinary workers’ compensation in a couple of ways. One major difference is that a worker must prove negligence on the part of their employer before they can be awarded damages. Another difference is that the Jones Act provides for payment of some categories of damages, such as pain and suffering and loss of enjoyment, that regular worker’s compensation does not. The Jones Act also provides free medical care and maintenance payments that help injured workers pay for their living expenses as they recover from their injuries.
Giddens Law Firm, P.A.: Support for Mississippi Workplace Accident Victims
Barge and towboat accidents are different than regular worker’s compensation cases, but that does not have to stop you from recovering for your injuries or damages. If you were hurt while you were working on navigable waters, you may be eligible for one or more types of relief under the Jones Act. An experienced Mississippi workplace accident attorney can help you understand the various types of relief that may be available to you, as well as how you can pursue any relief that you may qualify for. The Mississippi Workplace Accident Attorneys of the Giddens Law Firm, P.A. may be able to help you. Please call our office today, at (601) 355-2022, to learn more.
March 28th, 2016
A recent construction accident in Shelby County claimed the life of a construction worker. The worker was working on a bridge project when he became trapped between two pieces of equipment. Despite the efforts of medical personnel to treat the worker’s injuries, he died at the scene of the accident. Unfortunately, fatal construction accidents like this recent tragedy do sometimes occur and numerous nonfatal construction injuries happen on job sites across Mississippi and elsewhere.
If you are a construction worker, you may already know that your job is more dangerous than many other jobs. There are numerous types of hazards that can be found on all types of construction sites, from road and bridge construction to building homes or office buildings. Falls are one of the most common causes of construction site injuries, and falls are also a leading cause of construction-related fatalities. Other common causes of construction site injuries and deaths include being crushed in between heavy objects or machinery, as happened in the recent fatality described above, electrocution, and being struck by moving or falling objects or machinery. Injuries caused by exposure to chemicals or by repetitive motion are also not uncommon among construction workers.
The risks that lead to construction accidents can be reduced by careful attention to safe work practices, but they cannot be eliminated entirely. If you work in construction, it is important that you know what to do after a construction accident in case you get injured on the job. When you get hurt, you will more than likely need to leave the job site to obtain medical care. It is important that you do so right away, so that you injuries can be treated and you can begin to heal. Be sure to fill out an accident report right away, and make sure that your employer gets a copy of it. Keep a copy of it for yourself, in addition to a detailed set of notes about what happened, so that you can remember all of the important details later on. It is also important to speak with a workplace injury attorney so that you can file a claim for damages that can help you recover financially from your accident while you work to recover from it physically.
Depending upon the type and severity of your injury, you may have to take additional time off of work to recover from your injury. Continue to document your experience with notes, pictures, and other information. When your doctor begins to discuss your recovery in the context of going back to work, pay close attention to their recommendations. It can be difficult to learn that you may not be able to return to the job that you had before you were injured. Your doctor may be able to help you learn about what other work options may be suitable for you.
Giddens Law Firm, P.A.: Support for Individuals Affected by Workplace Injuries
If you are a construction worker who has been hurt at work, you may be interested in filing a worker’s compensation claim. Unfortunately, claims that individuals file on their own do not often go through to completion easily, and awards of benefits can be slow to come while your bills continue to pile up. The Mississippi Worker’s Compensation Attorneys of the Giddens Law Firm, P.A. may be able to help you with your claim. To learn more, call us today, at (601) 355-2022.
March 15th, 2016
The term “birth injury” does not, on its own, refer to any one specific type of injury. It refers to an injury that occurred during labor or delivery. There are a variety of types of birth injuries, and they are not all visible immediately after the baby is born. While some birth injuries may be noticeable right away, such as injuries that affect the nerves of the brachial plexus, other birth injuries do not get discovered until parents begin to notice things about their child that indicate that there may be something amiss.
Delays in reaching developmental milestones are one clue that may lead parents to investigate the possibility that their child was injured at birth. Every child develops at his or her own rate, but there are general and widely accepted guidelines that describe ranges of time within which almost all children do certain things like making eye contact or crawling. Pediatricians are often very helpful in working with parents to determine whether a child has a developmental delay or, in the alternative, whether the child is taking his or her time with a particular milestone. If there is a developmental delay, a pediatrician may be able to investigate possible causes of the delay, including the possibility that the delay is caused by a birth injury.
Seizures, tremors, spasms, or other abnormal body movements, are another thing that can alert parents to the possibility that their child was injured at birth. Not every child who has seizures or abnormal movement was injured at birth, but it is important to discuss them with your child’s pediatrician right away, so that the pediatrician can look into the cause of the seizures or abnormal movements and help your child obtain any necessary treatment.
If you are working with your pediatrician to address an issue with your child’s health and development and you suspect that your child may have a birth injury, it is important to think back to your birth experience and remember as much about it as you can. In particular, it is useful to think about whether risk factors for birth injuries were present during your labor and delivery. Some risk factors include the use of forceps or a vacuum extractor or an emergency cesarean birth. If you had an emergency c-section, try to remember as much as you can about how the decision to operate was made by medical staff and how much time passed between the decision to operate and the time that your surgery began. Any and all information that you are able to remember could help doctors determine whether your child was injured at birth.
Giddens Law Firm, P.A.: Mississippi Birth Injury Attorneys
If your child is exhibiting signs of a birth injury, it is only natural to wonder whether their injury was caused by medical negligence. Some birth injuries will eventually heal, while others may require additional care throughout your child’s lifetime. A birth injury lawsuit could help your family provide the support that your child needs. The Mississippi Birth Injury Attorneys at the Giddens Law Firm, P.A. may be able to help you. Please call us today, at (601) 355-2022.
March 11th, 2016
A pedestrian was killed in a tragic accident that occurred on Highway 25 in Starkville. The pedestrian died at the accident scene, and the driver who had struck the pedestrian left the scene of the crash. The driver was then located a short time after the accident. The driver could face criminal charges as the result of their actions. As is the case with many pedestrian accidents, it is possible that the family of the deceased could bring a wrongful death claim against the driver in addition to any criminal charges that may be brought.
Pedestrian accidents like the one that is described above happen more frequently than most people realize. On average, twelve American pedestrian are hit and killed by vehicles every day. The survival rate for pedestrians who are struck by vehicles is low because the force of an impact from a vehicle can throw a pedestrian quite a long distance or crush them between the vehicle and some other vehicle or object. Many times, the pedestrian dies instantly or dies within a short time after the accident at the accident scene as the result of their injuries.
The family of a pedestrian accident victim can bring a wrongful death action against the driver who struck and killed their loved one. A wrongful death action can help the accident victim’s family recover for the losses and damages that they have experienced due to the loss of their loved one. Some of the damages that family members may experience are funeral expenses, loss of support, and loss of companionship.
When a pedestrian is killed as the result of being hit with a vehicle, the driver of the motor vehicle may have been driving negligently or recklessly, possibly in violation of the law. However, fatal pedestrian accidents do sometimes occur without any unlawful behavior on the part of the driver. Fortunately, families of pedestrian accident victims can bring wrongful death actions regardless of whether criminal charges are filed. As far as unlawful behaviors that lead to pedestrian accidents are concerned, driving under the influence of alcohol is one of the most common. Sometimes, the conduct of the at-fault driver even exceeds that which the law considers unlawful behavior. There are various types of criminal charges, such as vehicular manslaughter and involuntary manslaughter, which can be filed in cases involving extreme recklessness.
Giddens Law Firm, P.A.: Supporting Mississippi Wrongful Death Plaintiffs
If someone that you love was killed in a pedestrian accident, you may be feeling many different things all at once. Losing a loved one suddenly in a pedestrian accident is tragic, and your family needs support during this difficult time. The Mississippi Wrongful Death Attorneys at the Giddens Law Firm, P.A. may be able to help you pursue a wrongful death claim against the driver who is responsible for your loss. A wrongful death action can help your family with funeral expenses and provide financial support in acknowledgement of your loss of your love one’s support and companionship. To learn more, please call our office today, at (601) 355-2022.