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Worcester Personal Injury Law Blog

Cause unknown of recent school bus accident that injured five

We see them on the roads all the time and we often smile, remembering our own childhood -- yellow school buses transporting children in Massachusetts to and from school bring back memories of our youth and the fun that we had. While we explicitly trust these school buses to transport our children, the reality is that they are big, unwieldy vehicles that require skill and agility to maneuver. And, when that skill is lacking, a bus accident can result.

The cause of a recent school bus accident in Massachusetts that ended up injuring five people is unknown. The bus was involved in a collision with an SUV. According to the police "a handful" of children were in the bus at the time the accident took place. The operator of the bus and the four occupants of the SUV were sent to the hospital after suffering from injuries that have been described as "minor." Two of the pupils on the bus were not injured. Their parents came to pick them up.

Medication errors can be fatal in nursing homes

Though we don't like to think about it, when we hear the terms nursing home neglect or abuse, we think of inadequate staffing or failure to supervise patients. As uneasy as it makes us feel that nursing homes in Massachusetts are negligently taking care of our loved ones, the reality is that it is very common and can take many forms, including medication errors.

Certain anticoagulants are used commonly in nursing homes, as they play an essential role in decreasing the risk of strokes in patients and also other conditions that could cause blood clots. Unfortunately, these same medicines can make it impossible for the body to stop bleeding internally and when the dosage is incorrect, it can lead to fatal results. According to a study published by the American Journal of Medicine a decade ago, more than 30,000 patients died due to two popularly administered anticoagulants.

Exhaustion is a major contributor to truck accidents

Getting into any kind of motor vehicle collision is terrifying. When the other vehicle is a commercial truck, it can be a nightmare. Large trucks are so big and heavy that they can cause catastrophic accidents with severe injuries and even fatalities. These accidents are relatively common, despite efforts to reduce traffic accidents. In fact, the number of serious crashes seems to be on the rise in many areas. No matter how carefully you try to drive, you can't protect yourself from a bigger vehicle that turns across your lane, plows into your vehicle or merges into a space where you're driving.

A lot of factors contribute to the high rate of serious truck-related accidents. One of the reasons that trucking accidents are so common is that trucking as a career is hard. There are long hours, often alone, performing high-risk work on the roads. It doesn't matter what the weather is, truckers still need to make deliveries. That necessitates driving in poor visibility, in the dark and during a major storm in many cases. Combine long hours and monotonous work with a strict deadline for delivery, and you have the perfect recipe for bad decisions and dangerous driving conditions for everyone else.

Car runs into bicyclist, causing serious injuries

It is an unfortunate fact that some automobile drivers in Massachusetts often forget that they are not the only objects on the road -- they share the road space with bigger objects such as trucks and smaller, unprotected objects such as motorcycles and bicycles. When a negligent or distracted driver is not paying attention to the road and failing to adhere to basic traffic laws, there is a high likelihood that he or she will end up endangering the lives of others.

For example, a recent crash in Massachusetts left a bicycle rider seriously injured. A 57-year-old man was on his bicycle, turning at an intersection when a 60-year-old driver, was making a left hand turn at the same intersection. He made the turn at a red light and did not see the bicyclist, resulting in the cyclist flipping over the hood of his car. The bicyclist was taken to a hospital immediately to receive medical treatment.

What is the link between ergonomics and carpal tunnel syndrome?

Most Massachusetts' residents encounter some form of hazards while working, regardless of what type of job they are performing. The risks are obvious when working at a construction site or industrial site, but even office buildings can become dangerous if an employer does not maintain a safe working environment. Workplace accidents such as slips and falls can take place at any workspace.

Similarly, if performing the same tasks repetitively or at an awkward position, something as simple as lifting objects or pushing and pulling loads or even reaching overhead, can lead to musculoskeletal disorders, such as carpal tunnel syndrome and muscle strains and back injuries. These are factors known to cause MSDs and increase the risk factor of developing the disorder that can affect blood vessels, ligaments, tendons and muscles. Work-related MSDs are perhaps the most common reason workers take time off from work or have to restrict their working time-in 2013 they accounted for around 33 percent of all worker illness and injury cases.

Seek compensation for workplace injuries from all parties

As mentioned in last week's post, the number of deaths caused by workplace accidents is at the highest it has been in the last 10 years. This is an alarming trend, especially since costs of living are rising and an injury means not only is the injured worker not working but is also facing high medical expenses. Employers can often try to minimize the incident so they do not have to deal with workers' compensation claims, but workers injured on the job should not let that deter them.

It is an employee's right to file a workers' compensation claim if they have suffered workplace injuries. When an employer has been negligent in fulfilling their duty of maintain a safe working environment, they should be ready to compensate their employees. However, this does not always happen. Injured employees are often shortchanged in settlements, because they do not know how much to expect and they succumb to pressure to accept less. They often forget that lawyers work for their employers, not for them and might not present them with the best deal.

Are temporary workers more at risk of getting injured on the job?

People across the state of Massachusetts urgently need jobs, and this is something temporary agencies are taking advantage of. They are paying their workers only in cash in order to not only avoid taxes, but also to avoid paying workers' compensation premiums. Not only do these temporary agencies not provide any insurance for their workers, but they are also sending temporary workers to perform dangerous and risky jobs without giving them any information about the job or training for it. This exposes workers to safety violations and workplace injuries, and is possibly one of the reasons the state has seen a 10-year high in the number of workplace fatalities.

In 2016, 70 Massachusetts workers passed away as a result of workplace injuries and illnesses, the highest number in the last ten years. The deaths were heavily concentrated in the construction industry, accounting for almost 40 percent of the job-related fatalities. The rate currently sits at two deaths per 100,000 workers, doubling since 2012. According to experts in the field, this increase can be attributed to the increase in subcontractors and temporary workers who haven't been given safety training and don't have the requisite experience. They are also more hesitant to speak up about workplace injury accidents when they do take place.

Who is liable in a car accident with a car sharing vehicle?

Even though driving is perhaps one of the most dangerous actions Massachusetts' residents engage in on a daily basis, it is also one of the most common ones. As a country, we mostly drive to get wherever we want to go and increasingly now we are outsourcing either our vehicle to be driven around when we are not driving it or volunteering to drive others around for some extra cash. Both endeavors can be highly profitable-the more days one makes their car available, the more they might end up getting paid. But what happens when the car is involved in a crash?

Car sharing, or peer-to-peer sharing services, as it is known, allows drivers to rent their vehicle to other drivers who need transportation. However, both parties end up taking risks they do not fully understand, especially when it comes to an involvement in a car crash, because the question that arises is: who will pay compensation to the injured person?

4 important steps to take after a car crash

After you're in a car crash, you have a million things on your mind. How can you afford to stay home from work? What happens now? Who can you call to pick up your kids? Are you hurt? Do you need to go to the hospital?

These are just a few of the things you already have to consider, and there are many more. Fortunately, what you need to do after a crash is relatively straightforward, and your attorney can help you handle your legal claim. So, what should you do after a crash? Here are four things to remember.

Man charged with drunk driving in head-on collision

When out driving in Worcester, there is an expectation that those sharing the road will adhere to the law and operate their vehicles safely. Unfortunately, there are times when drivers operate their vehicles recklessly, break the law by being a drunk driver, or take part in other dangerous behaviors that result in a car accident. When there is an auto accident, it can alter lives in a significant way with medical costs, a long hospital stay, problems getting back to normal, and even death. Often, legal assistance is the only method to be compensated to cover that which was lost.

A wrong-way auto accident led to a drunk driving charge for one driver and three others suffering serious injury. The accident occurred at around 3 a.m. as a 22-year-old man was going the wrong way on the road and had a head-on collision with a Honda Accord. The driver and his 23-year-old passenger suffered serious injuries and were hospitalized. In the other vehicle, a 19-year-old woman and a 21-year-old woman also suffered serious injuries. The wrong-way driver was placed under arrest and charged with multiple offenses related to the accident including DUI.

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