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Swimming Pool Accidents: The Raw Facts

Thursday, October 29, 2015

In the United States, about ten people die per day due to accidental drowning.

It's a sobering statistic, but drownings and other swimming pool accidents occur with surprising frequency. What should have been a nice, relaxing day can all too quickly turn into a nightmare. An accident in a swimming pool can be a traumatic and tragic event for you and your loved ones.

Children are especially at risk while swimming. According to the Centers for Disease Control, one in five people who die from drowning are children aged 14 or younger. For each one of these children, another five recieve emergency care for "nonfatal submersion injuries." These injuries can result in memory problems and learning disabilities. They can even lead to the victim becoming trapped in a permanent vegetative state.

For younger children ages 1-4, the risks are even more alarming. For these children, drowning ranks ahead of all causes of death other than congenital birth defects. When children up to the age of 14 are included, drowning becomes the second-leading cause of accidental death, following only car accidents.

Swimming pool accidents can too often prove to be fatal, but unfortunately, many of the worst accidents often prove to have been avoidable. Even something so simple as a fence around a swimming pool can have a dramatic effect in stopping accidents and especially drownings. Young children, left unattended or unwatched, often wander off and sometimes make their way into the inviting waters of a nearby swimming pool. Some of these pools are easy to get into: they sit at ground level and are unprotected by any gate, fence, or wall. With the pool unsecured and unattended, it becomes very easy for a young, inexperienced swimmer to get in trouble in the water. In this one example, which accounts for a fair number of drownings in the United States each year, a fence would have prevented the child's entry in the first place. The statistics on this, in fact, are notable: a four-sided fence around a pool can lower the risk of drowning in children by a shocking 83%! Because of this, many municipalities now require such a fence to be installed around any new swimming pool.

On a similar note, any pool area should be cleared of inviting floats and toys after use. These items are definitely fun in the pool- and they look fun to young children, too! Unattended children are too often attracted by these objects and are drawn into the pool area out of curiosity or in an attempt to use them. Because of this risk, the CDC recommends in the interest of safety that all such items be removed or placed in a secure location after their use is concluded. This will reduce the chance that a child will wander into a pool unattended and possibly suffer an accident in the water.

Swimming pool accidents can be life-altering, but as we have seen, many could have been prevented through various means. If you or a loved one have suffered a swimming pool accident that you believe could have been prevented, it might be a good idea to contact an attorney. A personal injury lawyer can walk you through your case and help you and those closest to you get the help and compensation you deserve.

Steps to Take After a Personal Injury at Work

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Injuries happen every day in the work place. If you have been injured at work, the things that you do immediately after the injury happened can affect whether or not you win your workman’s compensation case. Here are some tips that you can use to help you be successful in getting compensation.

Report Your Personal Injury

The injury you had at work needs to be reported immediately to your supervisor or boss. The person you work for needs to know about it so that they are able to enter the information into the report book of the company. Also, when you report the accident right away it will show that you are really hurt. Waiting until later to report the accident and injury is going to look very suspicious.

Go to the Doctor

When you have been injured at work, you need to make sure that you are checked out by a doctor. Your workplace might have a doctor that they use specifically for work related accidents. If not, it’s a good idea to go to the hospital. When you are being examined by the doctor, make sure that you tell the doctor that your injury is related to work. This is going to let the doctor put the information that they get from the examination into the report that goes to your employer.

Make sure that you collect the medical documents, receipts, and bills that you have gotten from your doctor. This is going to show that you did go to the doctor and it will help your case.

Follow Your Doctor’s Orders

Whatever your doctor tells you to do, make sure that you do it. Otherwise your employer may not believe that you are truly injured or that you aren’t as injured as you claimed. The last thing that you want to do is to have your employer be suspicious about the validity of your claim and terminate your employment.

Find a Lawyer for Your Work Injury

Even though chances are that your employer will give you compensation for the injuries, there’s also a really good chance that they are going to try to pay you the bare minimum. When you find a lawyer to represent you, you can be sure the lawyer is going to deal with the company’s adjuster and ensure that you’ll get the most compensation possible. He or she will also be sure your claim process is very simple for you through providing legal tips and advice. Your lawyer also is going to talk to the company’s insurance company if they need to and be sure that you’re fully compensated for your lost wages.

These are the things that you should do when you have sustained a personal injury at work. If you have taken the right steps, it will make your lawyer’s job a lot easier and help with expediting your claim. When your lawyer has the information that he or she needs about your work injury and knows that you have taken the right steps, your lawyer will be able to help you much more.

Do I Need a Lawyer when My Injuries Are Minor?

Friday, June 05, 2015

It may be tempting to proceed with negotiating with the insurance company on your own because your injuries seem to be minor. Doing so can be a serious mistake.

For instance, when you suffer whiplash in a rear-ender accident, the actual symptoms may not appear for days or even weeks later. In the meantime, you might struggle with some amount of neck pain that you believe is not serious enough to bother about. In many, injuries, symptoms do not make their presence felt for weeks later. One prime example is whiplash, but there are several injuries in which the extent of the injury can become evident only weeks later.

Even if your injuries are what you consider to be minor, they may have long-term consequences that you may not have completely appreciated. Say, for instance, that you have suffered a finger injury in an accident. You may believe that since it is a simple finger injury, you do not require an attorney to negotiate a settlement for you because the injury will heal quickly, and you can continue working as you did before.

That however, may not be how things turn out for you. If your job currently consists of manual tasks, or tasks in which you use your hands or fingers very often, then you may find that the finger fracture now limits your ability to perform the same tasks that you were performing. That immediately impacts your ability to earn an income, and could even determine whether you are able to return to the same job that you did before. These are questions that you may consider after an accident, and these are issues that you must resolve before you agree to any kind of settlement with the insurer.

Prolonged Resuscitation Efforts Do Not Benefit Child Drowning Victims

Sunday, February 01, 2015

In just a few couple of months from now, the temperatures will rise in California, and the year’s peak swimming season will begin. Every year, children constitute some of the most frequent victims of drowning accidents across the United States. New research seems to indicate that the current guidelines that call for prolonged resuscitation of children who have suffered a drowning incident, may actually not be beneficial to children at all.

The study was conducted by Dutch researchers, who say that their study points to a lack of any benefit in prolonged resuscitation efforts, for children beyond 30 minutes. They found that when resuscitation efforts were continued in children, who had drowned, and had suffered a heart attack, or suffered a significant drop in their body temperature in a condition known as hypothermia, the prolonged resuscitation did not have any benefit at all, and 87% of the children died after the incident. Out of the remaining children, many were left in a vegetative state as a result of the brain damage.

There is much that you can do to help reduce the risk of a child drowning in your swimming pool. Most child-related drowning incidents occur in residential swimming pools, when parents and caregivers take their eyes away from the child for just a few seconds. Make sure that children are not around any pool unsupervised. An adult supervisor must be present at all times. Avoid being distracted while you're by the pool. You are not going to be of any help if you're by the pool, and texting on your cell phone while children are in the pool.

Understand that a child who is drowning will not make a lot of attention, or splash about. Drowning is very often a very silent killer. It takes just a few seconds for a child to slip below the surface and either die, or suffer long-term brain damage.

If a loved one has suffered injuries in a drowning accident in a swimming pool, or hot tub, speak to a premises liability lawyer in Burbank.

Parents Fail to Strap Newborn Babies into Car Seats Correctly

Saturday, October 04, 2014

For many newborn babies, injury risks begin right from the very first car trip from the hospital to the home. According to a new study, newborns are at risk because their parents fail to install the car seat correctly while taking the baby home from the hospital. Children who are not appropriately restrained in a car are at a much higher risk of being killed or suffering injuries in an accident.

The researchers analyzed 167 families with newborn children, and monitored their trip home from the hospital. They found that 93% of the parents actually made at least one mistake, while placing their infant in the car seat. Those mistakes were also made during installation of the car seat.

Some of the more common mistakes while placing the baby car seat, were leaving the safety seat harness too loose with 69% of the parents making these mistakes. Approximately 20% used an after-market product, that was not approved with the car seat and 15% did not know how to adjust the harness.

There were also serious mistakes made in installing the car seat. At least 43% of the parents installed the car seat too loosely, or installed at an incorrect angle. In 23% of the cases, the parents used the safety belt, but did not lock it, and in 17% of the cases, the parents left incorrect spacing between the seat and the front seat.

Not surprisingly, most of these mistakes were made by families who did not speak English or were from a lower economic background. Non-white families or parents who were not married or single women without a partner were more likely to make these mistakes. The study also found that families that had worked together with a certified car safety seat technician were much more likely to install the seat correctly, and position the baby correctly. The correct installation rates were as much as 30% higher in the case of these families.


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From our offices in Woodland Hills, California, Freeman & Freeman, LLP, provides legal advice and representation for clients in communities throughout the state, including those in Burbank, Glendale, Encino, Sherman Oaks, Van Nuys, Tarzana, Santa Clarita, Agoura Hills, Reseda, Canoga Park, Chatsworth, Northridge, Granada Hills, Pacoima, Panorama City, North Hollywood, Thousand Oaks, Simi Valley, Lancaster, Palmdale and Alhambra.