Articles Posted in Wrongful Death

Image result for head injury emotionsThe risk of suicide increases by more than three times in the first six months after a person suffers a head injury. The consistent headaches, dizziness, and cognitive, logical memory problems that very often accompany a traumatic brain injury can lead to depression, exacerbating suicide risks.

In the study, Danish researchers estimated that the risk of suicide not only increases significantly within the first six months after the injury occurs, but also remains at least twice as high as in people with no brain injury, over the next few years. Even as long as seven years after the traumatic brain injury, persons with an injury had a 75% higher risk of committing suicide, compared to persons with no history of brain injury. Out of the more than 34,000 suicides that were studied as part of the research, more than 10% had sought treatment for brain injury.

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Image result for rear facing car seatThe nation’s leading pediatrician group now advises that parents continue to use rear- facing car seats for much longer than previously defined in order to minimize the risk of injuries to their child in the event of an accident.

Up until now, the American Academy of Pediatrics had advised that children be restrained in rear-facing car seats at least until they reach two years of age. However, now the group has changed its recommendation, and advises that children be restrained in rear- facing car safety seats at least until they reach the minimum height and weight that their seat is designed to hold.

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Image result for burned outWorkplace fatigue and burnout is a problem affecting American doctors, and according to a new study, as many as half of all doctors in the country are experiencing symptoms of fatigue that actually increase their risk of medical errors.

The poll was conducted by researchers at Stanford University School of Medicine, and focused on nearly 6,700 physicians. More than 10% of the doctors in the survey admitted to committing at least one major medical mistake in the three months before the survey. The researchers were also able to confirm that physicians who suffered from symptoms of burnout and fatigue were much more likely to commit serious medical errors.

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Image result for airbag recallOver the past few years, millions of vehicles equipped with Takata airbags have been recalled across the United States as reports of injuries involving defective airbags have snowballed. Now, a government audit stringently criticizes the federal administration’s product recall procedures, specifically pointing out to the Takata airbag scandal as an example of the agency’s inefficiency.

The USDOT’s Office of the Inspector General clearly states that the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration lacks the kind of processes and oversight that is necessary to make sure that product recalls are completed, and keep consumers safe. The audit report specifically blames the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s monitoring process that is not designed to ensure that remedies are tracked in a timely and efficient manner. The federal agency also does not have a system in place to completely and accurately verify recall completion statistics, even though it is authorized to do so.

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Image result for text and driveParents who use cell phones while driving are also much more at risk for other unsafe driving behaviors like drunk driving or failing to wear seatbelts while driving that place them and their children at risk of an accident.

Those findings and others come from a survey of parents and caregivers conducted by researchers at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia and the University Of Pennsylvania School of Nursing.  The survey finds that far too many parents take the risks of distractions while driving, far too lightly. Approximately 760 parents participated in the survey. According to the survey, in the preceding three months:

  • Approximately 50% of the parents admitted to using a cell phone while driving with children between the ages of four and 10
  • Approximately 52% of parents had used a hands-free phone to have a conversation while driving with a young child in the car.
  • 47% had used a hand-held phone to have a conversation while driving with a child in the car.
  • Approximately 33% of parents had read text messages while driving with their children, while 26% had sent text messages.
  • 7% or one in seven of the respondents admitted to using social media while driving with their children.

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Image result for semi truckSophisticated safety systems, like the ones that currently exist on many models of automobiles, can substantially reduce truck accident risks. However, the trucking industry has remained largely skeptical of the benefits of these systems.

Data indicates that there has been an increase in the number of truck accidents in the United States. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, in 2016, more than 4,300 fatalities involved people in accidents with tractor-trailers or big rigs. That is an increase of 5.4% from the previous year.

There is still more data that reveals that safety systems could help mitigate those risks, and that the trucking industry has resisted using these technologies. For instance, in 2015, only about 15% of commercial truck fleets in the country came equipped with forward collision warning systems or collision mitigation systems. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety estimates that as many as 107,000 accidents every year could be prevented if trucks came equipped with technologies that have been proven to help reduce the risk of accidents. These technologies include blind spot warning systems and electronic stability control systems.

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green eyes 2Lowering accident risks for older drivers continues to be a major challenge for Indiana transportation agencies as the number of such motorists in the state increases. A new study finds that better vision through cataract surgery can help reduce those risks.

The Canadian study found that accident rates for more than half a million drivers actually dropped after the drivers underwent a required cataract surgery. The decline was a fairly modest one of about 9%, but it does establish that improved vision as the result of a cataract surgery can help decrease driving risks.  Cataract surgery also seemed to substantially reduce accident risks among older drivers. Accident rates dropped by as much as 14%, among drivers above the age of 70. Overall, the researchers estimate that one accident can be prevented for every 5000 cataract surgeries that are performed.

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penny farthing 1Bicycling is what young children in Indiana like to do during summer. It is also one of the most certain ways to suffer an injury. In fact, new data indicates that as many as 25 American children are treated in hospital emergency rooms each hour, after suffering a bicycle accident-related injury.

That information comes from accident data collected over a ten-year period, which finds that more than 2.2 million American children every year suffer bicycle accident injuries that are serious enough for them to be rushed to an emergency room. According to the researchers, the rate of the injury seemed to decline over the ten-year period. However, there are still far too many children suffering injuries that are often very preventable.

The single most important thing that you can do to keep your children safe this summer is to make sure that they’re wearing helmets. According to the data, children who were not wearing a helmet at the time of the accident were much more likely to suffer a possibly serious traumatic brain injury in an accident.

Velocidad NauticaSummer is here, with all the boating and water craft activity that goes with the season. Indiana officials are on the alert for an increase in collisions and accidents on the water.

Indian officials are warning residents about the dangers involved in boating and operating watercraft on water bodies across the state. One of the dangers involved in boating is how safe everyone seems to think the activity is. Nothing could be further from the truth. The kind of dangers that you can expect when you are traveling on motorways are very similar to the kind of risks that face you as you are sailing on Indiana’s waterways.

According to a recent review of US Coast Guard boating accident statistics from 2006 to 2015, at least 65 of boat accidents during this period of time occurred on the Lake, Porter, and La Porte County waterways. 14 people died in those accidents, and 34 injuries were reported. Those accidents were associated with more than $627,000 in damages.

x-ray headNew studies find that the use of a safety checklist can help radiologists prevent errors during severe contrast reactions.

The results of the study were published recently in the American Journal of Roentgenology. Contrast reaction management is a particularly error-prone area of radiology,. What make it worse is that the kind of errors that often result during simulated severe contrast reactions can have life-threatening consequences.

For the study, the researchers created a safety checklist that was based on some of the most common errors that occur after a radiologist has administered an IV contrast medium. A group of radiology residents were split into two groups. Each group participated in the simulation severe contrast reaction scenario. The groups were administered written tests, before and after the simulation.