Florida Injury Lawyer Blog
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Labor Day weekend is a popular time to head out to Florida’s many waterways. Whether you are heading out to the rivers of Southern Florida or the beaches of Miami, boating accidents and other water-related accidents remain a concern. According to the Coast Guard and other authorities, holiday weekends tend to have higher rates of water-related injury, and Labor Day is a weekend that usually involves many of these types of injuries. The Coast Guard and other authorities have a number of tips to keep you safer around the water:

1) Never head near the water after drinking.

When you’re out on the water, you already have to deal with the sun, the glare off the water, and the Florida heat. When you add alcohol or drugs to the mix, you have the potential for a truly dangerous situation, especially since alcohol and drugs can exacerbate the effects of the sun. Alcohol and drugs can also affect your mobility and your ability to think clearly, which can result in drowning and other water-related tragedies. Boating under the influence is also illegal and can result in criminal charges.

2) Wear a life jacket.

Each person on board a boat should have a Coast Guard approved life vest. In the event of a boating accident, these vests can help keep you above the water, even if you hit your head or lose consciousness. Life jackets also make you more visible if you do go overboard, increasing the chances that emergency responders can find you.

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When you travel for business or for a vacation to Miami, you expect your hotel to be a comfortable place to retreat after a long day. Hotels in the city can be quiet expensive and of course you expect that these facilities will do all they can to make your stay pleasant and safe. In fact, many guests don’t even think about safety when checking into a hotel. On vacation, many of us turn our usual worries off and we don’t expect to have to be concerned about safety. Unfortunately, this can make us even more vulnerable.

The reality is that many people suffer serious injury in hotels in Miami and across Florida each year. The state attracts many tourists and while some hotels and motels are very careful about guest safety and security, some are not. Some guests suffer head injuries in their Miami hotel rooms due to poor building maintenance or rickety furniture. In some cases, guests become victims of assault, theft, or other crimes because hotels are negligent with security or fail to screen employees. These situations can not only ruin a trip but can also result in devastating and expensive injuries.

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If you have been injured while visiting a restaurant, hotel, or other business establishment, you may have a negligent security or premises liability case in Homestead or your community. This may also be the case if your injuries were caused in someone’s home or when you were visiting a condo or apartment building.

To launch a premises liability case, however, you need to be able to show that the property owner was negligent in providing you with a safe space. In some cases, there may be signs that a property owner has not taken due care to protect visitors to their property. For example, someone who has been injured may notice:

  • Poor lighting on a property
  • Debris on stairways and walkways
  • Lack of fencing or gate around a pool area
  • Dogs running loose on a property
  • Shelving not properly attached
  • Work areas and dangerous areas not blocked off or clearly marked
  • No railings on ramps and stairways
  • Spills on the floor that have not been mopped off
  • No warning signs for dangers
  • Uneven floors
  • Poorly maintained property
  • Broken gates, stairs, windows, and doors

All of these signs could be signs that a property owner has been negligent in providing a safe environment for visitors. If a visitor is injured as a result of this type of recklessness, they may have a legal claim against the property owner and any other liable parties.

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When we dine out, we expect to enjoy good food, a pleasant atmosphere, and good service. Unfortunately, each year diners in Miami and other cities are served up a lot more than just some comfort food. Each year, customers are seriously injured or even killed due to negligent security, poor restaurant maintenance, poor hygiene, and other preventable causes. The most common causes of restaurant-related injury include:

1) Property-related injuries.

Premises liability claims in Miami and Florida often include restaurants and there are many ways that these businesses can fail to protect customers. Spilled food and drink in the dining area, for example, can pose a serious slip and fall hazard. Poorly maintained buildings can literally cause ceiling tiles and fixtures to fall on customers. In some cases, customers have been injured due to uneven floors or decorative items that posed a trip and fall hazards. Restaurants are expected to create a safe as well as pleasant dining experience; when they fail to do so, they can be held liable if diners are injured.

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Are you taking a risk when you dine out?

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Workplace injury in Tamarac and other communities is a serious concern for all workers. While we expect some workers – such as construction workers – to face higher risks because of the nature of their jobs, some studies suggest that shift work may be one of the job types that can be especially risky. There are a few reasons for this:

1) Shift workers often have disrupted sleep cycles, sometimes staying awake for long periods of time to readjust to a new shift.

This has been shown to have a negative impact on circadian rhythms, which in turn has been linked with higher instances of heart disease, some cancers, and other serious illness.

2) Shift workers may suffer from greater fatigue.

According to University of Buenos Aires researchers shift workers may have lower serotonin levels than other employees, which is one reason why they may be getting less sleep and lower quality sleep than workers who have more traditional jobs. No matter the cause, many studies have shown a strong link between fatigue and shift work.

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Employees working the night shift could face additional risks

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While schools work hard to provide a safe environment for students, accidents and injuries do happen at schools. Child injury in Hollywood and other Florida communities can especially be a risk during the first few weeks of the new year. There is a new routine for students to get used to, and in some cases a new school means new challenges. Sometimes, children are so focused on getting back to class that they may be less cautious. There are a few things that parents can do, however, to keep their children safe at this time of year:

1) Consider traffic and pedestrian accidents.

Traffic crashes in Hollywood and other Florida communities are among the leading causes of child injury. Whether you are driving your children to school or your children are walking to school, come up with a way to keep them safe. If your child walks or bikes to school, that may mean having your child head to school with an older sibling or friends. If you drive your child to school, staying safer may mean carpooling or leaving a little earlier to avoid distracted and unsafe driving.

2) Take a look at your child’s schedule and after-school activities.

Injuries can happen at school, so take a look at what your child does at school to find ways to reduce the dangers. If your child takes part in after-school sports, for example, does your child have the right helmet and other safety gear to prevent sports injury at their Hollywood school? Is the coach qualified to train and supervise students? If your child has a science class, does he or she have safety goggles and any other required safety equipment?

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Whether your child attends college or goes to a high school or grammar school, of course you expect your child school to be provided with a good level of safety as well as an education. However, child injuries in Homestead and other communities often occur at school. As you start preparing for back-to-school, ask yourself these questions to see how your child’s school measures when it comes to safety:

1) Is there good control of entrances, with gatekeepers in place?

One problem with inadequate security in Homestead and other Florida schools often stems from the fact that just anyone can stroll into a campus or into school buildings. At high schools and schools teaching younger children, especially, it is important that when a stranger enters the campus or school, they do so near an office where gatekeepers such as administrative assistants can evaluate the reason for a visit. Obviously, it is more difficult to control who enters a college campus, but there should still be security and entrances in place to offer some security.

2) Does the school have a policy for dealing with campus dangers?

The school should have a written policy for dealing with school violence, fires, and other disasters.

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At this time of year, high school graduates are looking forward to moving onto campus and starting their college careers. It can be a nerve-racking time for parents. Unfortunately, sports injuries in Miami and other types of injuries are quite common on college campuses both in the city and across the state. To keep your child safe or, you will want to:

1) Make sure your child has a cell phone with emergency numbers on it.

Emergency numbers should include the police, friends, and campus security. Unfortunately, assault and sexual assault on Miami and Florida campuses are all too common. Your child should be able to quickly contact someone in an emergency in the event that they do become a target.

2) Do a quick check of dorm room security.

Dorm rooms can be targets for theft and in some cases become the sites for assault. When dropping your child off at school, check to see what policies are in place to control the flow of visitors and residents into the building. Make sure that the buildings and doors are secure and that other safety systems are in place.

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Summertime can be a busy time for hospitals and emergency rooms. There tend to be more car accidents in Hollywood and other communities, especially during long weekends and holidays. Since children are home for the summer, there are also more child injuries and swimming pool injuries in Hollywood and surrounding communities. Summertime activities can also mean a higher risk of burn injuries and fireworks injuries during this time of the year.

Unfortunately, an influx of patients can overwhelm health care workers and can create situations where injury and medical malpractice claims can occur. To prevent this, you will want to:

1) Prevent injury where possible.

The best way to avoid a medical malpractice claim in Hollywood or a negative medical experience in your community is to stay out of hospitals and emergency rooms in the first place. Even though most emergency departments are staffed by caring professionals, they are still high-stress environments where misdiagnosis and error can occur. Be proactive with your health and use common sense to avoid injury in the first place.

2) If you need to visit a doctor, visit the right facility.

Does your injury require a visit to a clinic, your regular general practitioner, a specialist, or an emergency room? Going to the right person can help you avoid delays with treatment and can ensure a better outcome.

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Emergency Room Negligence

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Medication is meant to make patients better, but unfortunately medical malpractice in Miami and other Florida cities as well as medication error can conspire to cause accidental overdoses, dangerous drug interactions, and allergic reactions. In some cases, drug manufacturers are to blame for releasing dangerous drugs to Miami and Florida patients. In many cases, medication problems are preventable and could be prevented if we could:

1) Ensure better information distribution.

Many patients are overwhelmed with information. They may not be given much information about a new medication from a doctor but may be given pages of technical drug information from the pharmacy. Some of the information may be difficult to understand and some may be contradictory. Some information is issued by drug manufacturers and some by pharmacies, which means it may contradict itself or be written in technical language that is difficult to understand.

2) Create better communication between patients, doctors, and pharmacies.

Sometimes, pharmacy negligence cases in Miami and other Florida communities occur because there is a breakdown in communication. Doctors may misinterpret information that patients give them, resulting in misdiagnosis and other issues. In some Miami area hospitals and clinics, patient care is in the hands of many medical experts and there may be miscommunication between individuals or even incorrect information entered into a patient’s chart. Sometimes, the pharmacy cannot read a doctor’s prescription or a doctor enters incorrect information into a prescription. Clearer and more transparent communication between all parties could reduce instances of medication error and misdiagnosis.

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Medication Safety is Everyone’s Responsibility

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