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What Are The Causes And Repercussions Of A Delayed Delivery Childbirth?

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Whether you’re preparing to give birth to your first child or your seventh, childbirth continues to be a scary thing. It might feel like there are millions of things that can go wrong, and that’s a feeling that can be very disconcerting.

This feeling can be heightened and get even worse if you end up having doctors who don’t seem willing to pay attention to and worry about the specific things you need while you’re pregnant.

If you think you or your child has been the victim of delayed delivery childbirth, then this article is for you.

 

What Is A Delayed Delivery Childbirth?

Delayed Delivery Childbirth (DDC) is also sometimes known as the failure to progress. Although medical science is still unsure about how and why this happens, they’ve determined that it can occur for a variety of reasons.

If you experienced delayed delivery childbirth and it wasn’t properly treated, you may have been at more risk than you imagined. DDC can result in serious and potentially life-threatening injuries to you and your child, and no one wants that!

 

What Are The Causes Associated With A Delayed Delivery?

Doctors and other medical professionals still don’t know exactly what might cause a pregnancy to last much longer than estimated. Sometimes, it’s something as simple as a miscalculated due date, but other times, there might be pre-existing conditions that can extend the time that you’re pregnant.

Most of these are things that a doctor should have caught and informed you of so that you can be prepared and so that you won’t be at as much risk. 

Some of these factors include (but please keep in mind that they aren’t limited to the following, so be willing to do further research):

  • A family history of a delayed delivery
  • Maternal diabetes
  • Having a male child
  • Maternal obesity
  • A cervix that does not properly dilate
  • Overdue pregnancy (when you go over a gestation period of 42 weeks)
  • Congenital deformities of the pelvis or tailbone
  • Unusual presentation of a child (i.e., breech position)
  • One or both parents being of larger size and weight
  • A mother who is shorter than the national average (about 5’3” or less)
  • Maternal drug use
  • Severe pain during labor.

There are many other factors, but if you’re suffering from any of these, you might be more at risk of delayed delivery. A doctor must be upfront with the potential risks.

 

What Are Some Signs Of A Delayed Delivery Childbirth?

On top of the already-mentioned potential causes, several other symptoms and signs might indicate a delayed delivery. These include (but again, are not limited to):

  • Less than three contractions (that last less than 40 seconds) that occur within ten minutes
  • Dilation of the cervix that dilates at a rate of less than 1cm/hour for two hours in a row
  • No change (or little change) in the baby’s progression into the birth canal after the mother has been pushing for three hours with a fully dilated cervix (10 cm)

If you experienced any of this, you might have been in more danger than you realized. As such, you might have a birth injury medical malpractice case on your hands.

 

What Are Some of the Consequences Caused By A Delayed Delivery Childbirth?

If you suspect you might have been a victim of delayed delivery childbirth, you and your child might be experiencing some side effects.

If you or your child are suffering from any of the following effects, please contact a doctor and a birth injury attorney today.

Some consequences include (but once again, they are not limited to):

 

Delayed Delivery And Medical Malpractice

It can be heartbreaking to discover that your child might have to live the rest of their life differently from neurotypical individuals. Read through the following list and see if anything on it sounds familiar.

If any of the upcoming items sound familiar, it might be that you’ve been a victim of medical malpractice, and would benefit from getting in touch with an experienced delayed c-section lawyer.

Did your doctor:

  • Make a delayed decision to perform a Cesarean section?
  • Fail to monitor for and/or detect fetal distress?
  • Improper use of a vacuum extractor or forceps?
  • Fail to administer oxygen to a newborn in distress?
  • Fail to diagnose a pregnancy-related medical condition such as gestational diabetes?
  • Fail to detect and address certain fetal conditions that may cause a delayed delivery?
  • Miscalculate the baby’s size, leading to delivery complications?
  • Improperly administer Pitocin or Cytotec, which are medications used to induce labor?
  • Fail to enlist the help of obstetric specialists to assist you with a high-risk pregnancy?
  • Fail to recognize when a child is in a breech position?
  • Fail to move forward with vaginal delivery?

If this is the case for your specific situation, please reach out to a lawyer and see if you have a case to receive aid for your neuro-divergent child. The birth injury lawyers at McEldrew Young Purtell Merritt are experienced with birth complications and will fight for you to get the compensation you and your family deserve. Call today at 866-357-8614 or fill out our form here for a free consultation concerning your case.

The 5 Most Dangerous Birth Complications

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Having your baby should be a joyous occasion. Bringing new life into the world is a fulfilling but heavy responsibility, and you want to do everything you can to make sure that your newborn is healthy.

However, the path to this successful future can be disrupted as early as birth, where complications can occur that affect the lives of parent and child irrevocably. This list will cover some of the most dangerous birth complications that you should be aware of.

If your newborn was injured in a birth complication caused by medical negligence, consider hiring an attorney to make sure you receive all the compensation that you deserve. If you hire an experienced birth and natal injury lawyer from McEldrew Young Purtell Merritt, you get a legal team ready to ensure your rights are protected, and that the people responsible for injuring your newborn are held accountable.

List of 5 Most Dangerous Birth Complications

While there are a variety of complications that can occur when having a child, some complications are more dangerous than others. The following complications can be unavoidable, but medical staff can often take steps to avoid excessive damages to the newborn if the complication is noticed early enough.

One: Shoulder Dystocia

Shoulder dystocia occurs when a baby’s shoulder becomes caught on the mother’s pelvis bone or becomes stuck before entering the birth canal. If the baby becomes stuck it quickly becomes a medical emergency. A baby being stuck in that position can cause the vital oxygen flow to stop and lead to oxygen deprivation. This can cause permanent brain injury or even death and may cause cerebral palsy.

To avoid this, a baby needs to be quickly dislodged from where it is stuck. Why this is one of the most dangerous complications, however, is because what doctors and nursing staff can do to rectify this condition may also cause other problems. If medical professionals use too much pressure, force, or pull and twist too hard, they can cause physical damage to the baby. This excessive force can fracture the baby’s delicate collar bones and cause severe damage to the base of the neck, leading to Erb’s palsy.

Two: Fetal Macrosomia

Fetal macrosomia refers to a child that is too large to safely give birth to through the vaginal canal. As a rule, this is any baby that is over nine pounds. There is nothing medically wrong with being or having a large baby. However, a large baby is far more likely to get stuck in the birthing canal, leading to oxygen deprivation and potentially causing significant brain injuries.

Three: Umbilical Cord Prolapse

A prolapsed umbilical cord is a serious birth complication (though it only rarely occurs, happening in less than one percent of pregnancies). It occurs when the umbilical cord enters the birthing canal before the baby does. In a typical birth, the baby exits the womb and enters the vaginal canal head-first. Once the child has exited the mother, the umbilical cord follows.

When the umbilical cord prolapses and is instead in front of the baby, this is a very precarious situation. As the baby starts to exit the womb, it will push on and compress the umbilical cord. This can restrict and even cut off the baby’s oxygen supply as the umbilical cord become more compressed through labor.

If the umbilical cord becomes prolapsed, the baby needs to immediately be delivered. This is one of the only cases where the oxygen supply can be completely cut off from the child, resulting in a high perinatal mortality rate for births where the umbilical cord is prolapsed.

Four: Uterine Rupture

This complication is incredibly dangerous for both mother and child. While a very rare occurrence, uterine rupture occurs when the uterine wall of the mother’s uterus tears. This can occur without warning, and severe cases may cause a hole to open in the uterus allowing for amniotic fluid to leak out from the uterus and in the worst case, the baby may even exit the womb.

A uterine rupture should immediately be addressed, and the baby needs to be delivered within minutes, as this complication quickly leads to oxygen deprivation. Even if an emergency C-section is done within 10-30 minutes, it may not be soon enough to prevent brain injury or infant death.

Five: Chorioamnionitis

This condition is caused during pregnancy because a bacterial infection carried by the mother enters the amniotic fluid or fetal membrane, and sometimes both. Though it is fairly common for the mother to gain a bacterial infection during pregnancy, chorioamnionitis is very rare and more dangerous.

A bacterial infection in the amniotic fluid can impact oxygen flow and nutrients to the baby, which can cause brain injuries. This condition may cause premature labor and increases the chance of your child developing cerebral palsy.

Getting Compensation

If you believe that your newborn child was injured by a birth complication because of medical negligence, you may be entitled to compensation. Consider McEldrew Young Purtell Merritt when hiring a birth injury lawyer. From broken bones or trauma to delayed C-sections, if your baby was injured during birth McEldrew Young Purtell Merritt can help you hold the right people responsible.

If you choose to pursue legal action, you likely get compensation for mental anguish and receive funds to help you adjust your life to caring for a child with cerebral or Erb’s palsy. McEldrew Young Purtell Merritt can help you get the compensation you need. Fill out a contact form, find a location near you in the Pennsylvania area, or call us at 1-800-590-4116.

Injuries Sustained On The Route 11 SEPTA Trolley Accident in Darby PA

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On Thursday December 9th, 2021, six individuals were injured when a Delaware County SEPTA trolley hit a freight train in Darby Pennsylvania.  Officials from SEPTA say that the trolley operator was among the six victims who were later taken to an area hospital.

Witnesses recalled hearing the loud crash as the trolley hit the freight train, and news reports from 6ABC reported a gate resting on top of the trolley.

A screenshot of the trolley accident courtesy of 6ABC.com

What if you or a loved one were injured in the trolley accident in Darby PA?

The negligence of SEPTA should not impact your or your loved one’s ability to earn a living and provide for your family.  If you were involved don’t hesitate to contact our firm at (800) 590-4116, or fill out our contact form to get in touch with our attorneys immediately.

SEPTA hosts more than 300 million passengers annually on its subway, bus, trolley and regional rail lines — an average of 80,000 riders per day.

With the sixth-largest ridership and the fifth-largest transit system nationwide, there are bound to be injuries because of operator error or defective equipment, negligence or recklessness. If you have been injured in an accident with SEPTA or while on SEPTA property, our trial lawyers will assess your case during a free consultation.

How do you prove accidents if you were injured in a SEPTA trolley accident?

One of the most important ways to prove an injury has taken place is to seek medical treatment and make sure you retain your medical records.

Without keeping this information it’s rare you would get a recovery or settlement against SEPTA for any amount – so keeping in close contact with your medical professionals is vital to recovering damages for your injuries in a SEPTA accident.

What are the causes of SEPTA trolley accidents in PA?

The true cause of the SEPTA trolley accident will not be known until a full investigation has taken place.  Both the freight train operator as well as the SEPTA trolley operator will be investigated, but SEPTA accidents can be caused by a variety of sources including but not limited to:

  • Operator or driver error
  • Improper maintenance of vehicles
  • Improper maintenance of property
  • Lack of driver training or testing
  • Negligent security
  • Failure to fix design flaws
  • Safety violations and regulation breaches

It’s only after a thorough investigation that courts can understand what led to the trolley accident.

Why should I contact McEldrew Young Purtell Merritt to represent me for a SEPTA accident?

Our attorneys have won millions of dollars on behalf of our clients, and we’ve represented hundreds of clients who have won settlements when injured by SEPTA or railroad negligence.

It won’t cost a single dollar to contact our attorneys and let our experts determine free of charge whether or not you might have a case against SEPTA.

The negligence of SEPTA should not impact your or your loved one’s ability to earn a living and provide for your family.  If you were involved don’t hesitate to contact our firm at (800) 590-4116, or fill out our contact form to get in touch with our attorneys immediately.

 

 

How Do You File a Successful Truck Accident Claim?

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Getting into an accident with a commercial truck, a big rig, or semi-trailer can be a life-threatening, life-altering, and traumatizing experience. The last thing you need to worry about is going after the company responsible for your injuries and damages. Hiring the right lawyer at the right firm can make sure that you receive the compensation you deserve for your injuries and strife, while also working to protect your rights.

This article will outline some steps you or a loved one can take to ensure that you successfully file for a truck accident claim.

Step 1: Find a Truck Accident Lawyer, and Sign an Agreement

Finding a lawyer should be your first course of action after dealing with the immediate medical ramifications of your accident. This contract can be called a Retainer Agreement or a Letter of Engagement. A good contract should include an outline for:

  • Ask about contingent fees, percentages, and expenses.
  • Map out a general timeline for the case. Understand that it may take a long time to complete this suit and that some of that time you may not be in constant contact with your lawyer.
  • Ensure and acknowledge the confidentiality of your lawyer-client relationship
  • Know how your attorney will handle your case, negotiate medical expenses, order necessary medical records, and conduct inquiries.
  • Also, be sure to outline termination agreements, if you or the attorney choose to cancel this arrangement.

Each firm will likely handle this contracting process a little differently. Always make sure that you are thoroughly aware of what your contract states before agreeing to sign anything.

Step 2: Be Sure to Only Correspond with Your Truck Accident Lawyer

After you find a lawyer and start your case, it’s advised that you should only talk about your case to your attorney and avoid communication with other institutions. However, when you’re in an accident with a commercial vehicle you will likely be contacted by your insurance agency and other companies.

Listed below are some common guidelines you should mind after you’ve been in an accident with a commercial vehicle.

Correspondence with the Police, DMV, and Doctors

  • File a police report after your accident.
  • Get a medical evaluation from a doctor after your accident.
  • If it’s required in your state, also report your accident to the DMV.
  • Avoid sharing any details about your case to anyone outside these entities and your attorney.

Insurance Agency

  • Report your accident to your insurance agency.
  • Avoid answering questions or signing paperwork you don’t understand.

A Trucking Company Claims Adjuster or Another Insurance Agency

  • If you receive correspondence, give them the contact information of your attorney.
  • Avoid answering any questions.
  • Avoid signing any documents.

If you have any questions about this step, or about what you can and cannot say to these entities, be sure to ask your lawyer before making any definitive statements or signing anything.

Step 3: Collect Evidence and Investigate Your Situation

You’ve likely already discussed some details of the investigation with your attorney, including your personal testimony, police report, and medical examination. In this stage, further investigation will be done, after your attorney agrees that you have a viable case.

This will be handled by the legal team but be prepared to provide assistance if necessary.

Step 4: Pen and Send a Personal Injury Demand Letter

After all the necessary paperwork has been signed, evidence collected, and conclusions are drawn, you can move forward with your case.

This is the step where your lawyer will reach out to the company or agency responsible for your accident and make the demand for compensation. This demand letter outlines the seriousness of your claims and ensures that the responsible parties will not be released from liability unless they meet the conditions outlined in the demand letter.

Step 5: Prepare for Trial or Review Settlement

The responsible party will have received your demand letter and will now review your evidence and conduct their own investigation. Three actions are most likely.

One, they may accept your demands and settle the case outside of court. Two, they may present a counter-offer, and negotiations may begin until a settlement is reached. Third, you may have to file a lawsuit against the company if they refuse your claims or you cannot arrive at a deal.

Step 6: Head for Trial

If you cannot strike a deal with the trucking company, you may have to sue them for damages and go to court. In this case, a judge or jury will determine if, and how much, you will be compensated for your injuries and strife.

Finding the Right Help

If you’re in the Pennsylvania area and need to hire an experienced truck accident lawyer, consider reaching out to McEldrew Young Purtell Merritt for your case. From catastrophic injuries to wrongful death claims, if you’ve suffered a terrible accident our team can help you get the compensation you deserve.

Find a nearby office in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. If you can’t make an appointment, consider filling out this contact form or calling McEldrew Young Purtell Merritt directly at 1-800-590-4116. Start your consultation today and get the compensation you deserve.

Top 5 Biggest Lawsuits Against Amazon

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Amazon has grown in the 25 years since its initial opening as a small book-selling business. Now it’s the largest online marketplace in the world and is responsible for a large majority of online retail business. As it has grown larger, Amazon has become a multi-media platform that sells all sorts of items from house building kits to small machinery parts.

They even offer membership programs that speed up their delivery times, promising Prime members who ordered packages arrival at their homes just hours after purchase. This has caused some controversy, as some appreciate these accelerated processes, and others ask customers to think about the human cost of such expediency. Despite outcries, Amazon continues to grow larger, adding more “fulfillment centers” across the world to expand their delivery services.

Amazon has not been without scandal for those epic 25 years, however. As Amazon grows larger, there are more and more complaints about how Amazon treats its workers. It also often refuses to take responsibility for accidents that occur because of its company culture.

In no particular order of importance, as all these suits are equally important for holding Amazon responsible for injuries and discrimination, we’ll cover some notable lawsuits recently filed against Amazon.

1. Discrimination Lawsuits Against Amazon Based on Race and Sex

Earlier this year, several current and former managers at Amazon began claiming that they faced race- and sex-based discrimination from other higher-ranked managers.

According to Charlotte Newman, reported by Vox in this article, she experienced continued race- and sex-based discrimination. She was constantly passed over for promotions by younger, less experienced white men. When asked, she said the upper managers had no real explanations for their hiring practices besides telling her she was, “just scary… [and too] intimidating.” These statements were playing off racial stereotypes of black women.

Another female manager claims that she was sexually harassed by another manager and was relocated after refusing to date the manager. Along with her, several other women have come out to speak against Amazon management.

2. Infant Death Caused By Amazon Delivery Driver

In 2019, a 9-month old infant died in an accident with an Amazon delivery driver.

This tragic case highlights how Amazon avoids taking responsibility for their driver’s accidents no matter what the human toll is for their emphasis on speedy delivery. This article outlines how the parents of the infant tried to hold the company responsible and encountered roadblock after roadblock.

Amazon insists that it should not be held responsible for drivers, even when their trucks are branded with Amazon logos. This is because they hire drivers through contracted delivery services. Despite this, Amazon keeps an extremely close watch on drivers and punishes drivers for wavering on their near inhuman standards.

3. Discrimination Lawsuit, Amazon Firing Pregnant Individuals

Amazon, gaining a reputation for terrible working conditions, discrimination, and strict upper management, has also been firing pregnant women. They do this just before the company will have to begin giving out the required accommodations for their health.

In continued discrimination, Beverly Rosales is speaking out for her quick-firing after telling her managers that she was pregnant. This comes to a trend, as at least half a dozen other women have come out with similar statements. According to CNET, six of these cases were settled outside of court.

4. Exhausted Driver Sues Over Working Hours

Timothy Weakley, a delivery driver for Amazon, has sued the company claiming that he was worked to exhaustion before falling asleep at the wheel of his delivery truck and crashing.

He spent an absurd 49 hours behind the wheel with little rest, causing him to become a dangerous driver. According to The News Tribune, the company he worked for—AAA Freight—claimed that sometimes it had to bend the regulations delivery companies are supposed to follow to meet the strict requirements that Amazon, their largest customer, demands.

5. Paralyzed Man Sues Amazon—Claims They Should Be Responsible for Accidents

Another attempt to hold Amazon responsible when their drivers cause accidents is this case involving Ans Rana, a 24-year-old man left paralyzed after an accident with an Amazon van. While Amazon continues to claim that they shouldn’t be held responsible for accidents as they don’t directly employ their drivers, Rana argues differently.

Amazon uses tracking technology to watch and record the delivery times of drivers. This is to enforce extremely strict standards while facilitating swift punishments for drivers that cannot meet them. These standards are often ludicrous, however, and often lead to employees feeling stressed and overworked. This case argues that this micro-management makes Amazon more responsible for employees than they admit and leads to terrible accidents like the one that paralyzed young Ans Rana.

Do You Have a Case Against Amazon?

If you think that you have a case against Amazon, consider hiring our local Pennsylvanian legal firm, McEldrew Young Purtell Merritt. If you choose a lawyer from our firm, we can provide you a skilled and experienced attorney to fit your needs after reviewing your case.

McEldrew Young Purtell Merritt has over 30 years of experience dealing with delivery, big rig, and commercial truck accidents. If you were in an accident involving an Amazon delivery truck, don’t stop at settling for compensation that doesn’t cover all your medical bills, property damage, or pain and suffering. By choosing to hire an attorney to handle your accident, you can be sure that you’ll get all the compensation you deserve.

Attorneys at McEldrew Young Purtell Merritt can also help you with whistleblower cases and discrimination cases. If you think you may have a case, contact us and find out if we can help you get the compensation you deserve for the pain and suffering inflicted by Amazon.

Find an office near you here, fill out a contact form, or give us a call at 1-800-540-4116.

Motor Vehicle Accidents Caused 20,160 Deaths in First Six Months of 2021: NHTSA

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The year 2020 saw a reduction of cars on the road due to the global pandemic, but also tragically saw a rise in traffic fatalities. Safety officials were hopeful that 2021 would see numbers starting to go down, but sadly, that doesn’t appear to be the case.

New estimates from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) are showing that 2021 saw the largest ever six-month jump in car accident fatalities. 2020 saw a staggering 38,680 people that died as a result of a traffic accident, the largest number of fatalities since 2007. And now, 2021 is shaping up to be another record breaking year.

 

2021 Traffic Accidents So Far

The NHTSA has released its Early Estimate of Motor Vehicle Traffic Fatalities for the First Half (January-June) of 2021, and warned that the number of traffic deaths was up 18.4% from 2020. Nationwide, there were more vehicle miles traveled during the first half of 2021, about 13% higher than 2020, or around 173 billion miles.

The current estimate of the fatality rate for the first half of 2021 is 1.34 fatalities per 100 million miles traveled, up from 1.28 per 100 million miles traveled in the first half of 2020. And these numbers have continued to trend upwards since the first update from the NHTSA in September.

 

Why Are Fatal Car Accidents on the Rise?

Although vehicles themselves have continued to become safer, adding new features every year that are designed to prevent accidents, there has still been an increase in overall deaths since 2019. These increases also include a rise in pedestrians killed by motor vehicles, a number which increased by nearly 5% in 2020, a year when fewer vehicles traveled during pandemic lockdowns. 

According to traffic experts, the explanation for the fatality spike is likely due to the fact that there were fewer cars on the road during the lockdowns. With less traffic, congestion was eliminated, which made people tend to drive at faster, and more lethal speeds. Many drivers involved in fatal crashes in 2020 didn’t wear seatbelts, and were more likely to be driving while drunk

 

How Are Agencies Working To Make Streets Safer?

The rise of fatal car accidents has become one of the main focuses of the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB). The NTSB has released a series of safety recommendations, and called on the NHTSA, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and the Federal Highway Administration (FHA) to all collaborate on standards to protect pedestrians and drivers alike. 

The NHTSA released all their data during the second annual National Pedestrian Safety Month Campaign, which focuses on issues that may be responsible for the increases in pedestrian fatalities that the United States has seen over the past few years. The campaign focuses on:

  • Embracing new safety technology
  • Reducing speeding
  • Comprehensive review of roadways, focusing on accommodating pedestrians. 

In addition, the NHTSA has issued their 10th edition of Countermeasures That Work, a guide covering 10 areas of concern on the roadways. Specifically the report covers:

 

What Was the Most Common Cause of a Fatal Accident in 2021?

While data on 2021 is still pending, the NHTSA has data available on 2019. 

  • Drunk driving: Drunk driving claimed the lives of 10,142 in 2019
  • Speeding: Was the next most deadly, claiming 9,478 lives
  • Distracted driving: Was the third most deadly, claiming 3,142 lives in 2019

These three factors have long been listed as the most dangerous factors in determining whether or not a car accident will be fatal.

 

When You Need a Car Accident Lawyer in Philadelphia

Tragically, it appears as though vehicle accidents and fatalities are only going to continue to rise throughout the end of the year. If you or your loved one were injured in a car accident, you likely have many questions about how to proceed with a personal injury lawsuit against the at fault driver.

The experienced Philadelphia Car Accident Attorneys at McEldrew Young Purtell Merritt can help you better understand the particulars of your case with a free consultation. Call us today at 1-866-333-7715 or reach out online via our form.  

McEldrew Young Purtell Merritt Secures $15.56 Million Verdict Against SEPTA

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On April 6, 2017, William Meszaros (“Bill”), then age 28, was working as a Power Trainee for Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority (“SEPTA”) Railroad Division.  On that day Bill was a part of a crew working in SEPTA’s Wayne Electric Car Yard in Philadelphia, Pa. Bill and his crew were tasked with loading a 5,644-pound spool of trolley wire into a storage container. 

In preparation to move the spool into the storage container, two members of Bill’s crew laid two sections of railroad ties in front of the storage container to compensate for the approximately 6-inch difference in height between the container floor and the ground. The spool of wire was then placed by way of forklift on the railroad ties. 

Once the spool of wire was placed on the railroad ties, the forklift was backed up to remove the forks of the forklift from under the reel. At this time, Bill was positioned just inside the storage container doorway as the other crew members began to roll the spool into the storage container doorway. The weight of the spool shifted to the right and pinned and crushed Bill to the wall of the storage container.  Bill was ultimately able to free himself, but he sustained catastrophic crush injuries and required emergency medical assistance.

Bill’s injuries included blunt abdominal trauma resulting in a mesenteric tear and serosal tear of the ascending colon, requiring surgical intervention, including exploratory laparotomy, small bowel resection with small bowel anastomosis, and repair of serosal tear of the ascending colon.  Bill also suffered a brachial plexus injury (permanent nerve damage) to his right shoulder and now suffers from chronic regional pain syndrome, chronic migraines, as well as post-traumatic stress disorder.  Bill is now, at the age of 32, permanently disabled as the nerve damage prevents him from fully using his right arm and his abdominal injuries has resulted in severe and permanent gastrointestinal issues.  

Suit was initiated on Bill’s behalf in Pennsylvania State Court under the Federal Employers’ Liability Act by James McEldrew, Esq. of the law firm of McEldrew Young Purtell Merritt.  From the outset, SEPTA postured as if it wanted to resolve this matter, however, never made any significant settlement offers.  In fact, SEPTA took the position that Bill was exaggerating his injuries and spent a staggering $55,195 to have Bill, his girlfriend, and young child followed and surveilled for three years – in hopes of “catching him” faking. 

After a failed mediation attempt it became clear that this case would be heading for a trial. On the eve of trial, SEPTA made a $3 million dollar settlement offer which Bill promptly rejected. During the week-long trial, Bill’s legal team from McEldrew Young Purtell Merritt presented eighteen witnesses, nine of which were medical professionals.  

The witnesses included gastroenterologists, Dr. James C. Reynolds and Dr. Albert Harary, who both testified at length to Bill’s permanent and chronic gastrointestinal (“GI”) issues, which range from incontinence and constipation to crippling bowel spasms.  Dr. Reynolds, who heads up the University of Pennsylvania’s gastroenterology department and Bill’s current treatment provider, explained that the presentation of Bill’s GI issues changes daily and because of that, Bill is limited in what he can do and eat as there is no way to predict when a bowel spasm will occur and cause Bill to defecate on himself.  

The jury also heard testimony from pain and rehabilitation specialists, Dr. Guy Fried and Dr. Steven Rosen. Both doctors explained the nature and extent of Bill’s brachial plexus injury.  SEPTA and its orthopedic expert, Dr. Richard Mandel, argued that from an orthopedic standpoint, Bill was fine and could return to work. However, Drs. Fried and Rosen explained to the jury that a brachial plexus injury is not an orthopedic injury – like a broken bone.  Instead, the doctors explained that the brachial plexus is a network of nerves in the shoulder that carries movement and signals to the arm and hands and the injury Bill suffered to his brachial plexus when he was struck by the spool of wire permanently damaged those nerves.  As a result, Bill will never have full usage of his right arm again and will have to deal with chronic regional pain syndrome for the rest of his life. 

Yet, SEPTA maintained its position that from an orthopedic standpoint, Bill was fine.  To support its position, SEPTA also presented the testimony of neurologist, Dr. George Dooneief, and several surveillance videos of Bill performing numerous activities. However, the case presented by Bill’s legal team was insurmountable as the jury saw through SEPTA’s farce of a defense and returned a verdict in the amount of $15.56 million – more than five times SEPTA’s pre-trial settlement offer. 

The case was successfully tried by Daniel Purtell, Esq., John Coyle, Esq., and Marcus Washington, Esq. of McEldrew Young Purtell Merritt. 

Driving with Dogs: Some Safety Tips

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It’s not uncommon for us to travel with our constant friends. Cats and dogs frequently accompany their owners in the car, whether they’re going to the vet, performing errands, going on a road trip, or even just a joyride!

Safe driving, like riding without cats and dogs in the car, involves a level of planning and the ability to avoid distractions. Here’s a list of things to remember the next time you’re driving with your pet. There are three different forms of distractions that might happen when driving:

    • Visual distraction
    • Manual distraction
    • Cognitive distraction

When a driver’s eyes are taken off the road, this is known as a visual distraction. When a driver takes their hands off the steering wheel, this is known as manual distraction. Finally, cognitive distraction occurs when the driver’s attention is diverted from the activity at hand. When driving with a pet in the car, any or all of these distractions could occur.

Any type of distraction while driving, even being distracted by a pet, can result in a collision. That is why, especially when traveling with cats or dogs in the automobile, safe driving rules should be continuously enforced.

 

Understand the Rules of the Road When Driving With a Dog

First and foremost, you should be aware of the regulations governing the transportation of animals in vehicles. Because these rules might differ from place to location, it’s even more crucial to do your homework before you go so you don’t end up with a hefty fine. This covers legislation governing your pet’s safe transportation, such as whether or not the dog must be transported in a carrier.

“Dog In Car Stock” by RebaSpike is licensed under CC BY 2.0

Fearful or car-sick dogs should be trained or prepared

Long road journeys present a lot of obstacles, which are amplified if your dog dislikes traveling or gets car sick. You can teach your dog to not be afraid of automobile journeys. You begin by training your dog to eat food from a parked car that has not been turned on. Work your way up to eating in the car while it’s running. Then practice on short journeys that conclude in a pleasurable location, like a dog park. Because this process can take weeks or months, you should begin well in advance of any extended trips. However, with the right training, your dog may come to like vehicle rides!

Car sickness, on the other hand, is an entirely separate problem that you can’t prepare for. You might be able to talk to your veterinarian about drugs that can help ease your dog’s nausea or put him to sleep during long bouts of travel.

 

Always have some food and water with you

You never know what could happen, so keep some dog food and a water bottle on standby to keep your pup hydrated in case of emergency. Keeping a spill-proof water bowl with the dog’s name on it will make it apparent what the dish is for. Allow your pet to have a drink and some food whenever you stop on a long journey, so they are not alarmed if an emergency stop needs to be made.

 

Every few hours take a break

People were not built to ride in a vehicle for eight hours or more, and your pet should not be expected to do so either. Make it a point to stop every two to three hours if you’re on a long journey. Step outside and stretch, then do the same for your pet. Before getting back in the car for a few hours, go for a short stroll to burn off some pent-up energy. This is beneficial to everyone’s health!

“Dog Eats Car” by fsamuels is licensed under CC BY-NC-SA 2.0

Locking your dog in the car is not a good idea

There are a variety of reasons why you should never leave your pet in the car alone. The interior of automobiles can become excessively hot in the summer, suffocating animals. Temperatures might plummet in the winter, causing your pet to freeze. It is prohibited in some areas to leave your pet unattended in a vehicle. 

 

Have fun on your journey!

Traveling with a dog is similar to traveling with a small child in many respects. Because they are unable to care for themselves throughout a journey, you must keep their needs in mind and be proactive in caring for them. Any resulting injuries of cars can be compensated by an Ontario car accident attorney. These suggestions should help you and your canine companion have a lot more enjoyable car rides in the future!

Tips To Prevent Dangerous Accidents in Your Home

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electrical injury baby

Unintentional injuries are one of the leading causes of death worldwide, and are the number one leading cause of death in those aged 35 and younger. Shockingly, about 76% of preventable injury-related deaths occur in the homes and communities. In fact, in 2019, 131,400 died from a preventable, unintentional injury. And over the last ten years, that number has been steadily creeping higher. 

Naturally, you would probably not think about bringing a lawsuit against someone if you or a loved one were injured in your own home. But if you were injured in a slip and fall, or other unintentional way in a house that is not your residence, you may have standing to file a claim against the negligent party. The team at McEldrew Young Purtell Merritt can help you understand the claims process, and how you can receive fair compensation for your accident with a free consultation. We’ve also compiled a list of our top tips to prevent dangerous accidents in the home below. 

“ADA 5′ shower units (9) with seat frames and grab bars – $200” by Our United Villages is licensed under CC BY-NC 2.0

 

Tips to Avoid Dangerous Accidents In The Home

While unintentional injuries can be severe or life threatening, the steps you need to take to prevent them are usually simple. Here are our top tips to prevent injuries in the home:

Prevent Falls:

Falls are the most dangerous and most common unintentional household injury. To prevent falls, follow these tips:

    • Always clean up spills immediately after they occur: Liquids, grease, or other fluids should always be cleaned up immediately after spilling on the ground.
    • Secure rugs: Non skid pads, or slip resistant backings should be present on all rugs on the floor. Double sided carpet tape is also available to secure the edges. Especially watch out for rugs at the top of stairs or near drop offs in the house. 
    • Be mindful of where liquids are placed: Make sure cups with liquid are placed far away from the edge of the table. Watch out for placing liquids on tables that have a tablecloth or runner on it, as a child can easily pull on the fabric causing a spill. 
    • Take extra precautions in the bathroom: Install grab bars in the shower or near the toilet if you live with someone who is unsteady on their feet, such as an elderly family member. Properly installed hower bars or shower stools can help prevent dangerous falls in the bathroom. 
    • Check dangerous areas: Garages and basement are often cluttered and have trip and fall risks. Make sure there are clear paths through these areas and that boxes are stacked safely without the risk of falling over and injuring someone. 

      “How many adults does it take to help a kid down stairs?” by JenCarole is licensed under CC BY-ND 2.0

Prevent Burns:

    • Watch where you place hot liquids: Follow the same steps as above and always be mindful of where you place cups of hot liquid such as tea or coffee.
    • Check your hot water heater: Keep water heaters set at or below 120 degrees to prevent burns from overly hot water. Young children and the elderly are the most susceptible to burns

General Safety:

    • Always keep electronics far away from water: Especially watch out for young children when in the bathroom and keep all electronics far away from the water
    • Stairs: Make sure your handrail runs the full length of the staircase and that there are no area rugs or mats at the base or top of stairs. Make sure outdoor stairs are well lit. 
    • Keep all cleaning products secure: All cleaning products should be stored in a secure and childproof cabinet. A high cabinet that children cannot reach is preferable. 
“Cleaning Product Organizer” by Hey Paul Studios is licensed under CC BY 2.0

 

Getting Help When Accidents Happen

Of course, you may not be able to implement all of these suggestions in a house other than your own. But this short list of tips can serve as a guide for what to look out for when you or a loved one visit another house, as well as help you keep your own home as safe as possible.

You won’t always be able to prevent an unintentional injury from happening, but if you or someone you love were injured because of someone else’s negligence in keeping their home safe, you may be entitled to compensation. Contact the experienced team at McEldrew Young Purtell Merritt today at 1-866-283-7804 or use the contact form here to find out what your rights are and get a free consultation.

 

Philadelphia Nursing Home an Example of How Administration Profits From Elder Abuse

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St. Francis Center for Rehabilitation and Health Care

A former manager has pleaded no contest to the charge of recklessly endangering residents at the Darby Nursing Home known as the St. Francis Center for Rehabilitation & Health Care. The misdemeanor charges were filed after the state Health Department completed an inspection that found severe neglect of patients in the home, including one patient with “wounds that went down to the bone with exposed tendon”.

This may seem like an outlying case, but unfortunately, nursing home administrations often profit by neglecting and abusing the elders who are in their care, making this kind of situation horrifically common. At McEldrew Young Purtell Merritt, we have years of experience bringing nursing home administrators and owners to justice after instances of neglect and abuse. We can help you successfully file a claim if your loved one has suffered due to negligence or malpractice while living in a nursing home or long-term care facility.

 

What Happened at St. Francis Center for Rehabilitation and Health Care?

In September of 2017, The PA state Health Department took the extraordinary step of revoking the center’s license and installing a temporary manager at St. Francis after an inspection found multiple instances of negligence, and immediately removed manager Chaim “Charlie” Steg.

The Health Departments inspection was prompted by five complaints. The inspection itself found multiple issues at the facility, including:

Three residents tragically died in the facility due to these types of abuse and neglect. These issues began at St. Francis shortly after staffing was severely cut back under manager Charlie Steg. 

 

Why Was St. Francis Understaffed?

St. Francis was majority owned by Charles-Edouard Gros, who bought St. Francis along with seven other nursing homes in 2014. Gros operated under the umbrella of Center Management Group, who used Charlie Steg as their regional director of operations. Center Management had previously paid fines to state and federal authorities related to neglect. 

A 2018 analysis done by the Philadelphia Inquirer showed that staffing at all facilities purchased by Gros fell sharply after his takeover, while his profits soared. Gros reduced the amount of care provided by registered nurses by 29% at St. Francis by cutting hours for nurses. The number of registered nurses at the facility fell by almost half after the facility was purchased by Gros. Numerous studies have shown that the presence of registered nurses is one of the key elements to providing high-quality care in nursing homes. 

Photo by Sabine van Erp via Pixabay

Is Elder Mistreatment More Common in For-Profit Nursing Homes? 

Despite all this, Gros has yet to face any criminal charges, with only manager Charlie Steg facing penalties. Attorney General Josh Shapiro has stated that  “We filed criminal charges where they were warranted. We held the establishment accountable to the best of our ability.” So why is it so difficult to file charges against the owners of facilities that commit gross acts of negligence?

The answer lies in the complicated legality of for-profit nursing homes. Nearly 70% of the nursing homes in the United States are owned by for-profit companies that often change hands. Who actually owns a nursing home can then become a convoluted question. 

 

How To Hold Negligent Nursing Homes Accountable

For-profit nursing homes can change owners multiple times in a single week, and often have management and ownership structures that are purposefully complex in order to obscure who is responsible for delivering care – and who is ultimately responsible when major issues arise. In fact, the charges against Steg are believed to be the first criminal reckless endangerment charges based on inadequate staffing levels and practices in a nursing facility in Pennsylvania. 

The experienced team at McEldrew Young Purtell Merritt know how to navigate the complex legal issues surrounding liability in cases of nursing home abuse and neglect. If your loved one has suffered abuse or neglect at a nursing home, contact us today for a free consultation, and we can help you hold the responsible parties accountable. We can be reached at 1-866-690-2848 or by filling out our form here.

 

 

 

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