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When it comes to commercial truck drivers, the fight against fatigue and drowsiness are real. However, the structure and nature of the trucking industry push many drivers to work past their physical limits. This clearly puts them as well as others in danger.

Usually, drowsy driving leads to many accidents. Among these crashes, those involving commercial trucks and big rigs usually cause catastrophic injuries and even death. The commercial truck drivers are at a higher risk for drowsy driving than anyone else. They spend long hours on the road. Also, they are pressured by their employers into meeting strict deadlines most of the times. There are some companies that offer bonuses and incentives for truckers who deliver their loads ahead of schedule. This encourages them to continue driving even when they are extremely drowsy or fatigued.

What are the effects of Drowsy Driving?
Usually, heavy-lidded blinks, yawning, lane drifting, and missing exits are just a few of the dangerous side effects of driving while drowsy. Truck drivers can pose a significant danger if they’re driving while fatigued.

Usually, the body seldom functions without sleep for hours. Adults need to sleep for seven to eight hours every night. This is important to stay healthy and maintain regular reaction times. Due to lack of sleep, drivers can suffer from short-term memory loss; slowed reaction times; mood changes and an increase in aggressive behavior and difficulty processing information.

Why do most of the truck drivers do not get good sleep?
In the trucking industry, new regulations appear when accidents or trouble arise. However, the nature of trucking goes against many of the recommendations for good sleep. The goal to transport as many goods as possible in the shortest amount of time doesn’t focus on health. The safety of the drivers is also at stake, when on road. The proper sleep conditions, such as a consistent bedtime, comfortable mattress, cool temperatures, and quiet conditions can be almost impossible to find while out on the road. This is the reason why many drivers sleep in their cabs in a new location each night.

Regulations can be disregarded
Truck drivers have a 14-hour work period usually. They are allowed to drive for 11 hours. The other three hours are supposed to be used for periodic rest all day long. Drivers can take one 30-minute break. They can spend the remaining portion of the three hours as they want.

There are certain regulations to help limit the number of truck drivers on the road between 1 a.m. and 5 a.m. to help drivers maintain a more normal sleep cycle. This set of rules is meant to provide better sleeping patterns. However, these rules can go against many common practices of the drivers, mainly those who find themselves pressured to meet tight deadlines.

There are some drivers who are paid by the mile. It is clear that the more miles they travel in a day, the more money they make. Others record and report their hours themselves. This leaves it up to the honesty of the driver whether or not to follow regulations.

Effects of drowsiness
Drowsiness usually is known to impair a driver’s judgment, reflexes and reaction times. At the time of falling asleep, drivers can swerve into cars and pedestrians in the other lane or go off the road.
The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration has instituted hours of service schedule limiting truckers to 14 consecutive hours of driving. As per this law, a break in the first eight service hours is necessary. It requires truckers to take 10 off-duty hours prior to starting their next shift.

Why are truckers more susceptible to Drowsy Driving?
Any driver may be guilty of driving drowsy. However, truck drivers are pretty much more at risk. There are several factors such as long hours on the road, tight deadlines, and pressure from employers that pretty much contribute to drowsy driving. When a regular driver can pull off the road, a truck driver on a strict deadline can deliver cargo may not have this luxury. It is a common habit of truckers to push themselves past the breaking point. This is the main reason why the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) has created hours of service schedule that all truck drivers must obey.

As per the hours of service rule, all commercial motor vehicle drivers who need to carry property cargo must have an 11-hour maximum driving limit. This is only after 10 consecutive hours of being off duty. A driver might not drive longer than 14 consecutive hours. The job pressures can make truckers ignore the hours of service rule and push themselves too hard to meet deadlines. Trucking companies might offer incentives such as bonuses for drivers who deliver cargo ahead of schedule. These practices clearly leave the trucker fatigued.

Impact of Drowsiness
Drowsy driving is as dangerous as drunk driving. In case of drunk or fatigued driving, the driver’s judgment, reaction time, and cognition are impaired. Sleepiness can slow a driver’s reflexes as well. This leads to a higher chance of collision. No one can determine the moment they fall asleep. A tired driver can easily doze off without realizing he is at risk.

When a driver has to steer suddenly to avoid a collision or hit the brakes, drowsiness might slow down these reactions to a dangerous point. Thus, it gets really difficult to pay attention to the road since the driver is highly focused only on staying awake. Most of the commercial drivers need to be aware of the risks of drowsy driving. They need to learn how to prevent this tragic mistake.

How to avoid fatigue while driving?
In order to avoid drowsy driving, try not to put a delivery deadline ahead of your personal wellbeing. If you feel tired, accept it and act on it! The smart thing to do is to pull over and sleep. Try to stick to industry-standard resting guidelines at all times.

Need a truck accident attorney in Florida? Call us now!

The post Why are Truck Drivers at Such High Risk for Driving While Drowsy? appeared first on Schiffrinpa.

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There are homes that provide quality care to their residents. However, there are some that permit abuse and neglect to occur. Loved ones need to stay vigilant about checking on relatives in nursing homes. Only then can they spot potential signs of abuse and neglect.

Here are some probable signs of home abuse:

Bad Personal Hygiene
It is likely for the elderly people to lack the physical or mental ability to properly groom themselves, bathe or tend to other aspects of their personal hygiene. They might just have to rely on nurses and aides for this assistance. However, in case nursing home residents are neglected, these minimal tasks may not be completed. The elderly individual might try to tend to these tasks on his or her own. Bad personal hygiene might be a surefire indicator that the nursing home is understaffed or that aides are not properly trained. It can also be an indicator of potential abuse. After all, it shows that the aide does not care about the elderly individual. So, make sure to look for signs of unwashed hair, body order, the smell of urine or feces and dirty clothes.

Unsanitary Conditions
It is required for nursing homes to comply with federal and state laws pertaining to sanitary conditions. Remember that nursing homes are responsible for making sure the environment is safe, clean and maintained in a way to ease off the possibility of infection.

Unexpected Physical bruises or injuries of any other type
This is a sure-shot indicator of abuse. Remember that nursing home staff that is overwhelmed or stressed may lash out at vulnerable older adults. They might try to physically harm the patient by pushing, scratching, hitting, biting or pinching the patient. The elderly individual may suddenly have broken bones from a fall that was unexpected.

Poor use of restraints to keep a resident from moving around can also be physical abuse. Most of the head injuries or fall injuries may occur when a nursing home resident attempts to do things for themselves.

Issues related to toileting
In case your loved one has suddenly become incontinent or more “accidents” are reported, consider whether his or her basic needs are not being addressed properly. Keep in mind that frequent urinary tract infections may be due to failure to properly help a resident mobilize.

Occurrence of Bedsores
Bedsores can be stopped by the frequent rotation of immobile patients. At the time when patients develop bedsores, this might indicate that they did not have proper assistance.

Dehydration
It is the duty of the nursing home staff to provide healthy meals and hydration for their residents. In case an elderly individual is not getting adequate nutrition or hydration, medical conditions can occur. Abuse might be present when food or water is withheld from an elderly individual as a disciplinary tactic. These characteristics might indicate neglect due to factors such as a lack of training, understaffing or lack of oversight. Make sure to ask about any rapid weight loss or signs of dehydration.

Zero or reduced Mobility
Most of the nursing home residents are immobile. In case your loved one’s mobility has declined since residing in the nursing home, it might be a sign that there is not enough personalized time with the resident. Also, the resident may not be being given the use of a walking program.

Increased number of falls
Most of the older individuals are at a huge risk for falling because of medications, balance problems and the weakening of bones and joints. Nursing homes need to provide an in-depth fall risk assessment when the resident arrives at the nursing home.

A lot of Confusion
When a loved one is more confused than usual, it might be the result of being overly medicated. This can also be a sign of the possibility that nursing home staff is not properly monitoring the patient.

Bad Mental health
In case your loved one has a change in personality out of the blue, this may be due to abuse or neglect. Also, be alarmed if your loved one shows signs of excessive emotions. Your loved one might suddenly appear fearful, agitated, embarrassed, upset or angry due to physical, sexual or emotional abuse such as being ridiculed, bullied, ignored or threatened with punishment. Also, one needs to keep in mind that a loved one who has suddenly withdrawn from favorite activities may be silently suffering. There are many families that seek out a nursing home only when a health emergency forces them to.

What to do once you discover home abuse?

Make sure to take note
When you observe signs of nursing home abuse or nursing home neglect, you should ask your loved one about the situation. Even patients who are mentally capable of recognizing the problem and telling someone about it may be reluctant to do so. This can be due to fear of retribution from the abuser. It can also be due to a misplaced sense of loyalty to nursing home staff, not wanting to be seen as a complainer etc.

Your first step is to discuss this with the facility manager or supervisor. At least, you should leave a note and then follow up with a telephone call at the earliest opportunity.

Maintain Calm
Call 911 when you have reason to believe the resident’s life is in instant danger. However, if that is not the case, you should confront the nursing home’s administration first.

Though you are not taking legal action, the presumption of innocence until proven guilty still applies. It is vital that you address the manager or supervisor calmly and professionally. You can allow this person to offer explanations or offer to investigate your concerns.

You should contact the appropriate state agency and file a complaint. Keep in mind that every state has an Adult Protective Services department. This way you can find this information on the website of the National Council on Aging. You can also contact a nursing home abuse lawyer to get your case handled properly.

The post Steps to Take After Discovering Nursing Home Abuse appeared first on Schiffrinpa.

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Pedestrian accidents are as bad as they sound! They consist of head-on collisions, roll-over crashes and bicycle accidents. The outcome is pretty bad most often. Serious injuries are mostly common. Drivers surely have a responsibility to pay attention to prevent accidents on the road. However, pedestrians are equally responsible for their safety. They need to stay alert while walking on sidewalks or crossing the road.

Here are some basic rules of the road for pedestrians:
As per the Florida Statute §316.130, a pedestrian must not walk on the street, but should walk on the sidewalk where sidewalks are provided. In case a sidewalk is not provided, a pedestrian can walk on the road of course. However, you need to be cautious all the time while on road or sidewalk. When you are sharing roadways with cars, you need to be extra cautious. When there is no sidewalk, a pedestrian is expected to walk only on the shoulder on the left side of the roadway as related to the pedestrian’s direction of walking, facing the oncoming traffic. This is due to the simple fact that a driver and a pedestrian when facing each other are more aware of each other’s presence. Thus, it reduces the chances of the occurrence of any accident.

  • Cyclists are not counted among pedestrians. So, they are expected to travel on the right.
  • When a pedestrian is not crossing the road within a marked crosswalk, he needs to give in to the right-of-way to all vehicles. While crossing, pedestrian needs to look left, right and left again to ensure that he or she has a safe way to cross.
  • All the traffic signals need to be followed by pedestrians. The pedestrians need to cross a road only when a pedestrian light is green. However, pedestrian needs to make sure that the cars are stopping while crossing.
  • Pedestrians should keep it in mind that even when a pedestrian has right-of-way, all cars might not stop. It is likely for a driver to not notice a pedestrian or a traffic light. So, it is important for a pedestrian to make eye contact with the drivers before crossing a road. This increases the chances of the driver to notice the pedestrian. As stated by the Florida Statute §316.130(13), the pedestrians should move upon the right half of crosswalks while crossing.
  • As per the Florida law, any person is prohibited to stand on a road that is paved for vehicular traffic to solicit a ride, employment, or business from the occupant of any vehicle. Also, you should keep in mind that you cannot stand on or near a street or a highway to solicit the watching or guarding of any parked vehicle or a vehicle about to be parked on a street or highway.

If any of the above mentioned Florida laws is broken, you might be punishable as a pedestrian violation. A person might either elect to appear before a designated official or pay the civil penalty and delinquent fee, if applicable, either by mail or in person, within 30 days after the date of issuance of the citation. This is mentioned in the Florida Statute §318.14(4) & (5). The amount of penalty for a pedestrian violation is $15 for every §318.18.

The pedestrians should stay visible by wearing clothes with reflective material, especially in the nights. They need to stay out of blind spots. Make sure to stay alert all the time. Keep in mind that wearing your headphones while walking on the street, especially a busy one may decrease your ability to hear horns or noise from the oncoming traffic. If you follow these basic rules, you can easily avoid dangerous situations leading to injurious or even deadly accidents.

Today, cars are equipped with plenty of safety equipment like a seat belt and airbags. However, pedestrians in Florida still need to be cautious while walking on the street. Florida pedestrians usually are at a higher risk of suffering serious injuries or even being killed in a vehicle accident when compared to those of other states. So, Florida pedestrians should be aware of their surroundings while walking on the road or crossing the road. A passenger and the driver in the car should ensure the safety of that vehicle with the help of multiple crash safety tests.

The vehicle is usually built to sustain some type of impact and protect the occupants inside it. The pedestrian is surely at a greater risk of getting injured as compared to the driver or the passengers in the car. It is because the pedestrian is exposed to all of the possible elements.

Pedestrians and motorists both have equal responsibility to do away with pedestrian accidents. It is essential for vehicle drivers to realize that defensive driving refers to being aware of people who operate wheelchairs, roller blades, play in the road, use a bicycle or walk. More focus should be given on elder adults and kids.

Pedestrians need to be extra cautious since they are the most vulnerable party in such accidents. They have a probability to suffer from severe physical or even mental injuries. If the pedestrian accident is too serious, the vehicle driver might be severely injured as well. It is likely for him to get into fight or flight mode.

When a pedestrian accident involves severe injuries or death, the case might turn out to be serious and complicated. Accidents involving death can give way to criminal charges. All of you need to understand what are your rights and also the steps that you need to take after the occurrence of a pedestrian accident in Florida.

Being a no-fault state, Florida has personal injury protection coverage required for individuals. To get proper compensation, you would need to file a claim with your own personal injury protection insurance coverage immediately after the accident. Also, you would need to max out your benefits there prior to filing a personal injury claim. For a pedestrian accident claim, it is not a tough job to exceed your personal injury protection cap.

The post Pedestrian Accident Law in Florida: All you need to know appeared first on Schiffrinpa.

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As far as a medical malpractice case is concerned, it is essential to hire a qualified and experienced lawyer. Every Medical malpractice case is different from the other. These cases often tend to take a complicated turn at a later stage. These cases often need testimonies from other medical experts to prove your claim. There are not many lawyers who have actually spent proper time handling these kinds of cases. If you are seriously looking for an experienced and specialized medical malpractice lawyer, visit Mark Schiffrin P.A. law firm and discuss your case.

The smartest way to find a good, experienced medical malpractice lawyer is to ask a lawyer who you know and trust to recommend one. Your general lawyer might not have handled a personal injury or malpractice case. But, he or she might have contact with several lawyers of other specialties. Thus, they can actually help you in finding a good malpractice lawyer through contacts and lawyer-to-lawyer networking. Also, your close friends or relative can be of great use in this context. Just keep in mind that most lawyers will be ready to help.

Every state and local bar associations have lawyer referral services in general. These associations connect prospective clients with qualified lawyers. Most bar associations need lawyers who want to be listed in a specialty such as medical malpractice to demonstrate their experience in a specific field. When you wish to be connected with a lawyer, you simply need to call the bar association and ask to be referred to a qualified lawyer.

There are multiple web sites that have a method of connecting with lawyers by specialty. All you need to do is to submit an email request – along with some general information about your case.

When you hire a medical malpractice lawyer, you need to be sure that the lawyer has experience in medical malpractice cases. Also, you need to make sure that you and the lawyer are a good fit for each other.

In the initial stage, you can ask the lawyer about his or her experience in medical malpractice cases. You can actually ask them as to how many medical malpractice cases has the lawyer handled, for how many years has the lawyer been handling these cases, how many has he been able to settle etc. However, you need to keep in mind that most medical malpractice trials end up with a defense verdict. So, do not expect that the lawyer will have won most of his or her medical malpractice trials. However, you need to be sure that he has at least a few medical malpractice trials.

As stated earlier, medical malpractice cases usually require a medical expert witness to prove your claim or strengthen your claim. They can prove that the defendant health care provider was negligent or irresponsible or has deliberately caused malpractice of medicine. This is why you need a specialized medical malpractice lawyer who knows every nuance of your case. When you are not able to find a qualified medical expert witness to give an opinion that the defendant was negligent, your case might get dismissed! So, keep in mind that hiring a professional lawyer is that important in this case.

Almost every experienced medical malpractice lawyer knows how to find a medical expert in any specialty. They have good networks usually. There are a few medical malpractice lawyers who work with medical expert witness services. The experienced lawyers even have the names and phone numbers of numerous doctors in almost every specialty.

Before hiring a professional lawyer, you need to make sure that he or she is the not just an expert in general but is a good fit for you as well. In short, it is essential for you and your lawyer to get along well. Remember, he or she shall form a team with you. So, there has to be mutual relationship. In order to find out whether you and a lawyer are going to be a good fit, you need to assess yourself and the lawyer.

There are different types of lawyers all around. There are friendly ones, approachable ones and curt ones as well. Most of the lawyers are usually effective at getting compensation for their clients. However, they all might have totally different kinds of relationships with their clients. So, you need to make up your mind what type of lawyer would suit you. Though, you should always make sure that your lawyer is approachable and is transparent with you, if not that friendly!

Medical malpractice cases are usually pretty expensive. You can have a detailed conversation about the overall fee once you have zeroed in on a few of the lawyers of your choice. Make sure to get a good understanding of how these contingency fee structures works.

Legally, you have the right to handle your own medical malpractice case without hiring an attorney. However, it is not as simple as it sounds! Even if you know the basics of medical malpractice lawyers, you alone cannot match the expertise of the attorney of the opposing team. So, to save your own case, you need to give in to a professional legal expert.

The legal territory is pretty complex. The opposing team shall be on the look out to demean you, falsify your information or evidence and take every wrongful step to weaken your claim. So, you need to have a professional lawyer to safeguard you from such dirty tricks.

When you are involved in a fender bender car accident and your car is damaged, you can take the other driver to small claims court and try to get him or her to pay an adequate amount to get your car repaired properly.

There are many medical malpractice cases that involve significant harm to the patient. Many patients require a long-term course of health care that adds up to a great amount of expense. In worst situations, it might lead to lifelong disability. In order to get a suitable recovery amount or compensation for all these temporary as well as permanent damages caused, you certainly need the helping hand of a qualified medical malpractice lawyer.

The post How a Lawyer can help you in Medical Malpractice Claim? appeared first on Schiffrinpa.

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Social media impacts anything and everything around us today. We casually post our favorite pictures on Instagram, update our Facebook statuses to reflect where we are and what we are doing at any given moment, and tweet our comments for the whole world to see. The main problem arises due to oversharing. Not only does this habit of ours reveal too much about us but it can actually have a serious impact on several aspects of our lives.

Even legal matters cannot escape social media’s overpowering grasp. If social media is used smartly that rarely happens, it works as a pool of resources that might help in speeding up the process of reaching a resolution. It is often used to investigate plaintiffs, defendants, witnesses, experts, attorneys, jurors, judges and other parties related to law. It is a given that anything you post on the Internet has the power to affect your case as it can be used as a strong evidence against you. The courts give equal value to the Social media just like any other evidence. Normally, for the court to accept an electronic piece of evidence, the information from social media should be relevant to the case and 100% authentic. Such information holds greater value to any hearsay stuff.

The even normal extent of sharing on social media can make a huge difference in terms of getting the compensation you deserve for your injuries and losses when it comes to personal injury cases. In short, what you say or do online can be used effectively against you to dispute a personal injury claim.

Insurers often hunt down the internet in the name of investigating a claim. Social media posts can be presented in a real twisted manner to nullify your version of events or even defaming you to some extent. More and more online photos and posts are being used as evidence in court. It may cast doubt on your version of events, your character and even the nature or extent of your injuries. Moreover, social media sites keep a record of the exact date and time you posted that information. Thus, such information is more than valuable to defense attorneys and insurance companies.

To save your personal injury claims, you can close or deactivate your social media accounts. You might also tighten the privacy settings of your accounts.

This way you can limit the discovery of negative evidence that comes in the form of social media.

Here are 5 basic Ways in which Social Media Can Ruin Your Claim:

Photographs contradicting the facts stated by you
Certain times photographs of your vehicle or the other party’s vehicle might inadvertently contradict information provided by you in your claim. An expert defense lawyer might get the scope of using those pictures as actual evidence to deny or reduce your claim.

Sharing too much of information
Sharing your immediate feelings when you are in a state of vulnerability after being in an accident can be dangerous. Anything you say or express in excess can be misinterpreted. For instance, too much remorse can be misread as an admission of fault! So think before speaking in front of others.

Contradictory information
Tweeting a message or posting a picture on Facebook or Instagram might contradict the information about the accident. Certain posts might contradict the information you supplied when you filed your claim. An insurance adjuster might use this loophole as foolproof evidence against your claim.

Derogatory comments or messages
Apparent derogatory comments or messages posted by you or friends on social media can actually be used to create a bad image of you. Your character might get questionable as a person and as a driver. Certain messages that were posted from a safe space with a sense of little humor might be twisted by the opposition to be presented as something disrespectful.

Tracking of whereabouts
Certain insurance companies cannot just take it easy and might go out of their way to track your location after an accident. It can be done through social media platforms. Virtual platforms such as Foursquare and Yelp include information about a person’s latest whereabouts. An insurance adjuster might find out about your recent participation in extreme sporting activities after your injury claims. However, the truth might be that you had just been a passive spectator. But, the insurance company and your opposition party shall not leave this stone unturned! They are too well-versed to use it as a reason to deny or reduce your claim.

Here are certain examples of the types of posts that may impact a personal injury claim:

  • Photos or videos might show that you engaged in physical activity, like participating in a marathon or a dancing event which can be used to refute the injuries you claim to have suffered due to the recent accident.
  • Certain status updates that imply your engagement in activities that do not go well with your claim of your injuries or required treatment.
  • Certain social media posts might unintentionally cast significant doubt as to whether you were partially responsible for the accident due to negligence such as drinking and driving.
  • There are many Internet tracking applications that can be used to disrepute your version of the sequence of events that led up to your accident that resulted in your injury.
  • Many times, the rules of evidence might gradually find written social media postings as inadequate or baseless. However, online pictures and posts certain times act as hard evidence that is difficult to discredit. Things get worse when the posts are found on many of your social media sites.

Thus it is incredibly important for you to take steps toward protecting your online identity and social media accounts in order to proceed with your claim effectively. You shall be required to prevent yourself from posting anything related to your accident. In fact, you might be needed to delete posts and messages that could be used to limit your claim.

The post How Social Media Can Ruin Your Personal Injury Claim? appeared first on Schiffrinpa.

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