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Redwood City California Personal Injury Law Blog

Stay safe on the road this Fourth of July

The Fourth of July festivities are rolling around again fairly soon, so we want to take this time to encourage everyone to do their part for safety through a little advanced planning.

If you're participating in the festivities this year, it's smart to remember that Independence Day is one of this nation's biggest "drinking days" every year. It's time to party with a plan. That means:

  • Party hosts should put out plenty of nonalcoholic drinks for their guests, especially the designated drivers among them. It's also a good idea to have a few extra blankets and pillows ready for guests who need to "sleep it off" before trying to drive home.
  • Party guests should plan how they're getting home before they ever head out the door. That means deciding on a designated driver or taking an Uber or Lyft (instead of your own car) -- or asking a buddy for a ride. Just remember that it's not safe to get in a car with someone who has been drinking or using marijuana under any circumstances.
  • If you don't drink or use recreational drugs, why not volunteer to be someone's designated driver? You may save someone from a serious accident -- or even arrest and jail. Even if you aren't officially someone's designated driver, you can help out by watching your friends and family members and making sure that none of them get being the wheel of a car while intoxicated.

Why doctors are required to perform time-outs pre-surgery

Just like mechanics need to have a game plan before performing any work on a vehicle, doctors also need to have an understanding of and strategy for the procedures that they're going to perform before starting to operate on a patient.

Doctors learn to take a time out period before a medical procedure begins to allow the entire surgical team to reset or reboot before taking any action. Doing this allows the physician to confirm that they'll be working on the right patient, performing the correct procedure and at the designated site.

Why shouldn't you discuss an accident with the insurance company?

Do you ever wonder why you see so many articles and blogs from attorneys warning consumers not to talk to insurance agents and adjusters after a wreck? If you've been in a car accident and the other driver was at fault, that's what their insurance is there for, right?

Right. Except insurance companies don't make money when they pay out claims. They have a vested interest in devaluing your claim as much as possible. You can bet that they'll be on the watch for anything they can use to do it.

California OBs and midwives know the signs of fetal distress

When you're pregnant, it's always best to build a strong support network from the start. This, of course, includes a competent, experienced medical team who can provide prenatal care and remain on hand to address any concerns that may arise as you await the birth of your baby.

Whether you are having a child for the first time or have had several others, you will no doubt encounter challenges throughout your pregnancy, including fatigue (especially in the first trimester) weight gain or, perhaps, morning sickness. There are certain issues, however, that should concern your obstetrician or midwife because such issues suggest a higher risk for fetal distress or other problems during labor and delivery.

Ikea accused of leaving deadly furniture in homes

It's a running joke among consumers that Ikea's furniture can be somewhat hard to assemble on your own, but nobody ever alleged the stuff was downright deadly -- before now.

The retail giant, known for its do-it-yourself furniture, may be facing a class action lawsuit in federal court over charges that it knowingly allowed unstable dressers that could easily tip and fall on children in homes. According to the suit, which was filed in the Eastern District of Pennsylvania but has national implications, at least nine children have been killed by the company's defective furniture. Dozens of other children are also alleged to have been injured.

Less traffic equals fewer accidents -- but doesn't eliminate them

Out of safety concerns, many people are staying at home -- and that's caused a significant drop in the number of traffic accidents that are being seen throughout California and elsewhere. Traffic volume on the state's highways, for example, is estimated to be down more than half.

Since March 20, when shelter-in-place orders took effect, the number of traffic accidents and related deaths have both been cut in half. It's estimated that the drop has saved the state $40 million each day -- for a grand total of about $1 billion so far.

The catastrophic effects of a traumatic brain injury

Traumatic brain injuries, or TBIs, are commonly seen after serious motor vehicle accidents, especially when a much larger vehicle hits a smaller one -- like a truck hitting a car or a car hitting a motorcycle. But the damage from a TBI isn't really confined to a victim's brain. TBIs, in many ways, are whole-body injuries.

Moderate to severe traumatic brain injuries can affect victims in three basic ways.

How do you survive a plane crash?

Aviation accidents don't happen nearly as often as car accidents -- but they do happen. The most horrific ones make it into the news.

But many airplane accidents are not as serious. Believe it or not, the United States National Transportation Safety Board says that 95.7% of people involved in an airplane accident will survive their ordeals.

Medical errors may have underlying causes in common

A medical mistake is something most people cannot even imagine. Going to a doctor, hospital or nursing home is often something people do when they are seeking relief from suffering. You place your trust in medical professionals when you are at your most vulnerable, and you may never expect that you have misplaced your trust.

Nevertheless, medical errors are among the most common causes of death in California and across the country. Close to 15% of Medicare patients suffer injuries from mistakes made by doctors, nurses, surgeons and other professionals. How does this happen? In a profession where the stakes are so high, how is it possible for health care experts to make so many errors at so great a cost?

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Haberkorn & Associates
2055 Woodside Rd., Suite 155
Redwood City, CA 94061

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