Articles Posted in Child Injury

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pilPersonal injury law is utilized when someone causes physical harm to another and the injured wants to be made whole or compensated for that injury. The experienced attorneys at Friedland | Carmona provide free consultations to those who believe they may have a case and are seeking more information on the options available to them. Examples of situations when people normally seek personal injury lawyers in Miami, Coral Gables, and the surrounding areas include but are not limited to:

Auto accidents,

Trip and falls/slip and fall: There are many dangerous conditions like torn carpeting, changes in flooring, poor lighting, narrow stairs, or a wet floor can cause someone to slip and be injured. Same goes if someone trips on a broken or cracked public sidewalks, or falls down a flight of stairs. In addition, a slip and fall case might arise when someone slips or falls outdoors because of rain, ice, snow or a hidden hazard, such as a pothole in the ground. In any event, the plaintiff must have sustained some kind of injury, however minor, in order to collect, http://injury.findlaw.com/torts-and-personal-injuries/slip-and-fall-accidents-overview.html

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-fire-damaged-hoverboard-780x439Since at least Black Friday and during the past holidays, hoverboards were the go-to gift.  Thousands of these motorized self-balancing scooters were sold. However, they’ve proved to be a serious and very dangerous safety hazard, catching on fire while charging, exploding, and, consequently, causing fires in people’s homes. Additionally, the device can malfunction and cause a rider to fall and sustain serious, life-changing injuries. According to U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission’s Chairman, Elliot F. Kaye, some of these injuries have been serious, including concussions, fractures, contusions/abrasions, and internal organ injuries.

Additionally, top speeds are reached by the rider leaning forward, therefore increasing the risk of facial and head injuries. The agency also recommended riders have a spotter since the hoverboard begins to move quickly the second pressure is applied.

Louisiana-mom-says-flame-spitting-hoverboard-sparked-house-fireIn Louisiana, Jessica Horne lost her family’s home after her 12-year old son’s Fit Turbo hoverboard exploded. A gyroboard caused significant damage to a home in New York. At a mall in Washington, a scooterboard caught fire and shoppers were forced to evacuate. The apparent danger is significant enough that major airlines have banned the two-wheelers altogether. But what is actually causing all these fires? In the New York and Louisiana incidents, the board was plugged in and recharging. In the mall incident, the board wasn’t plugged in at all; there have also been reports of scooters bursting into flames while people were riding them.

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30e71b8970f24504bcf1b016d9593a1b-1fdd43dde68d4867b0922a4417a7acaa-0.jpg The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recently released a report showing that children are dying less frequently in traffic accidents. Over one decade, the number of children who died in car crashes dropped by forty-three percent. According to health officials, at least part of the reason for the decline was the increased use of car seats and booster seats. Despite the general increase in use of these seats, one-third of the children twelve and under who died in 2011 were not wearing a seatbelt or safety restraint. Dr. Tom Frieden, director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, says that “the first step is buckling up. Every child, of every age, on every trip.”

The CDC studied crash fatalities of children twelve and under from 2002 through 2011, a time when traffic deaths overall declined to levels not seen in over fifty years. Young children traditionally account for only a small portion of the total deaths caused by car crashes. Children accounted for 650 of the 21,000 deaths of drivers and passengers in the last year of the CDC study. Preliminary figures for 2012 show the number of child fatalities decreased to 637. Jonathan Adkins, deputy director of the Governors Highway Safety Association, commented that children are not the ones who go out drinking or driving at night, which is the time at which many of these deadly accidents occur. He said that teens and young adults account for the largest share of traffic deaths.

The CDC study was not meant to provide answers as to why the number of young children dying in car crashes has declined; experts believe that the decline can be credited to a large increase in state laws requiring car seats and booster seats and programs that encourage adults to make sure their kids are buckled up. The CDC noticed a racial disparity in how well these laws and programs have worked–nearly half of the black and Hispanic children who died in car accidents in 2009 and 2010 were not sitting in safety seats or wearing seat belts, compared to only a quarter of the deaths of white children. Experts say this may be because of income and the cost of car seats. Many car seats cost over $100 and can be quite difficult to install. Frieden stated that there are community programs that provide assistance and subsidies for car seats. Health officials encourage parents to keep all children twelve and under in the back seat and utilize car seats and booster seats until seat belts fit correctly. They also recommend that car seats face the rear up until age two. Just last month, the NHTSA proposed new regulations to provide better protection during side-impact crashes to children in car seats.

Child traffic deaths drop 43 percent over decade www.palmbeachpost.com February 4, 2013

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s7GSG.St.56.jpeg A Miami-Dade mailbox is now decorated with stuffed animals, colorful balloons, and candles after a six-year-old girl lost her life near that spot Wednesday morning. Betasha Bien-Aime and her grandmother were attempting to cross Northeast 213th Place to get to Madie Ives Elementary School when they were struck by a white Mercedes driven by a sixteen-year-old. Betasha, who was in the first grade at Madie Ives, was killed in the crash. Her grandmother remained in the hospital as of Thursday as she recovered from a broken arm and leg.

Yesterday, Betasha’s blood-stained yellow barrette was added to the memorial surrounding the mailbox. Betasha’s mother, Marie Bien-Aime, stated that it has been very hard for her to deal with the loss of her daughter. She said, “It’s tough when you lose a child. I couldn’t sleep at all last night.” As Betasha’s family, friends, and neighborhood grieve their loss, they hope that Betasha’s death serves as a wakeup-call to drivers who speed through residential neighborhoods. They also hope to see action from Miami-Dade County in addressing what they say has been a longtime problem in their neighborhood. Daniel Harvey, a man who came to the memorial Thursday, said, “Cars speed by here everyday. We knew something like this would eventually happen.”

Police have not yet filed any charges against the sixteen-year-old driver who attends a nearby high school. They are still determining whether speed or any distractions played a role in the crash. Neighbors, however, are convinced that speed was a factor. The accident occurred around 7:17 a.m. and the teenage driver was heading north as Betasha and her grandmother crossed 213th Place from west to east. That is when the driver struck both Betasha and her grandmother, knocked down an “End of School Zone” sign, and struck the rear of a parked van.

Neighborhood mourns first grader killed in car crash, www.miamiherald.com November 07, 2013

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54651654-29115321.jpg A young child remained in critical condition in a Broward County hospital on Saturday after he was struck by a dirt bike in Fort Lauderdale. The child’s name and age have not yet been released. According to police, the accident that caused the child’s injuries occurred just before 6:40 p.m. Friday evening in the 2300 block of Northwest 16th Street.

Fort Lauderdale police stated in a news release issued Saturday that the young boy ran from the porch of a home located on the north side of 16th Street toward the road. A driver heading west saw the boy and stopped in order to avoid hitting him. A dirt bike also traveling west attempted to pass the car by driving into the eastbound lanes. As it passed the car, the dirt bike struck the young boy. The driver of the bike, Brandon Dennis, twenty-two, was thrown off the bike when he hit the boy. Dennis was transported to Plantation General Hospital with non-life-threatening injuries. The young boy was in critical condition when he was transported to Broward Health Medical Center. Authorities believe the boy’s injuries are life-threatening. As of Saturday, charges had not yet been filed and the investigation was ongoing.

Child struck, injured by dirt bike in Fort Lauderdale, www.miamiherald.com October 26, 2013

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pit-bull-pitbull_1.jpg A three-year-old girl is currently recovering in a local Palm Beach hospital after she was bitten in the face by a pit bull on Wednesday. Rusty, the dog who bit the young girl, is in the custody of Animal Care and Control. Animal control Capt. David Walesky stated that Rusty, who is about six years old, was not up to date on his rabies vaccinations, so he is currently undergoing a ten-day quarantine to determine whether he has symptoms of the disease. According to Walesky, it is unlikely that a domestic dog like Rusty would have rabies.

Animal control is conducting an investigation into what prompted Rusty to bite the little girl. This investigation should be finished by the time the quarantine is complete. Animal control will then determine if Rusty falls into the “dangerous dog” category. Walesky stated that “the dog has been very friendly with everyone else so we don’t know why this little girl was bit. We have to look at exactly what happened.”

It was around 5:30 p.m. Wednesday evening when the little girl and her friend were riding their bicycles in the East Highland Pines Drive neighborhood, which is off of Northlake Boulevard. The girls saw Rusty tethered to the back of his owner’s truck on his owner’s property. At some point, the owner walked inside his home, and the three-year-old girl walked onto the man’s property towards the dog. For reasons yet unknown, the dog then bit the girl in the face. She sustained mostly soft tissue injuries, including lacerations and puncture wounds. Palm Beach Gardens Fire Rescue crews arrived on scene and transported the girl to St. Mary’s Medical Center. The girl remains in stable condition.

FHP: Palm Beach Gardens girl, 3, bitten in face by pit bull, www.palmbeachpost.com October 10, 2013

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kansas city car crash.jpg Four people were injured, including three children, when a SUV rear-ended a parked Cadillac, pushing it into a Kansas City, Missouri day care center early Tuesday afternoon. The Cadillac was parked in front of the school with no driver inside when the Range Rover SUV crashed into the back of it. As the Cadillac crashed into the building, it trapped two young children underneath. The three children who suffered injuries in the accident were taken to Children’s Mercy Hospital and treated for mild to moderate injuries. According to Tye Grant, Kansas City Police Capt., the driver of the Range Rover was in a hospital in stable condition.

The accident occurred around 1 p.m. Tuesday inside the Christian Academy Child Care, located east of downtown. There were approximately forty children inside at the time. The driver of the Range Rover was approximately eighty years old, police said. Grant also stated that a utility pole was struck at some point during the crash. The cause of the crash is still under investigation. Neighbors gathered around the accident scene Tuesday afternoon while crews pulled the Cadillac out of the building, leaving a pile of rubble, including child-sized chairs, for onlookers to see.

Day care director Dena Washington said, “We are holding all comments until we get some clear facts.” Washington waited with children behind a nearby house until their parents came to pick them up. Several of the children were in tears. Curtis Sawyer is a parent with two children who attend the day care. He rushed to the scene after he heard of the accident. He was happy to see that his children were safe, but sent his prayers to those families with children injured in the accident. Sharon Washington, a grandparent of three children who attend the day care, was “very relieved” her grandchildren were with her at the time of the accident. Her eight-year-old granddaughter stated, “We were lucky we weren’t in the day care. They ran over me and my brother’s classroom.”

4 injured when car crashes into Missouri day care, www.palmbeachpost.com July 30, 2013

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christianbyrd.jpg A southwest Florida daycare provider is facing charges of child neglect and aggravated manslaughter after a two-year-old boy died in a tragic drowning accident while in her care. Christian Byrd drowned on June 24 in a kiddie pool at the Smith Family Daycare in Lehigh Acres. Forty-two-year-old Melissa Smith, the owner of the daycare, remains in custody.

Smith had at least seven children in her care on June 24. Three of the children were inside her home and three were in a swimming pool. Smith placed Christian in the pool with a three-year-old and two four-year-olds and then she returned inside to check on the other children, according to Lee County deputies. While inside, Smith checked on the children and used the bathroom, according to a Fort Myers News-Press report. By the time she returned outside, one of the children in the pool told her “Christian’s dead.”

Smith picked Christian up and went to a neighbor’s house to get help, leaving the six other children unattended at her home, three of them still in the swimming pool. Smith’s attorney, Robert Harris, reports that his client is devastated and feels horrible about what happened. Harris said that Smith is CPR certified, but she panicked and asked a neighbor to perform CPR while she called 911. An autopsy confirmed that the young boy’s death was caused by drowning. According to the News-Press report, Smith’s daycare has been in operating since 2009 and it renewed its registration with the state on June 12. Smith was allowed to care for up to ten children at any given time under the Department of Children and Families regulation.

SW Fla. daycare owner charged in boy’s death, www.palmbeachpost.com July 19, 2013

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pit+bull+generic+1.jpg A pit bull attacked a thirteen-month-old baby Wednesday morning in Dania Beach. The baby was inside the family home located at 4841 SW 44th Avenue when the pit bull, which was owned by the victim’s mother, started to act erratically and attacked the baby. Gina Carter, a Broward Sheriff’s Office spokeswoman said family members rushed to pull the dog off the baby and called local authorities. Broward Sheriff’s Fire Rescue responded to the scene and transported the injured baby to Memorial Regional Hospital in Hollywood. The baby’s name and gender are still unknown. Carter stated that the injuries sustained by the baby were “serious.”

In the hours following the incident, the neighborhood surrounding the home was somber and quiet. One of the victim’s cousins, who was outside the family home, refused to give his name or make any statement about the attack. The family identified the animal that attacked the baby as a male pit bull. The dog was taken into custody by animal control following the incident. According to Lisa Mendheim, public education coordinator at the Broward County Animal Control and Adoption, the victim’s mother requested that the dog be euthanized following the attack. The mother was cited for failing to have proper identification tags for the dog and for not getting the dog vaccinated for rabies. Mendheim said animal control will wait ten days before euthanizing the pit bull in order to determine if the dog was infected and if he spread the disease to others. Mendheim said it is unlikely that the pit bull contracted rabies and spread it to others because he was a family pet. Mendheim was unsure if the family had other pets.

Commissioners tabled a proposal to outlaw new pit bull ownership in Broward County in February after dozens of county residents spoke out against the proposal. Last year, Miami-Dade residents voted to maintain a 23-year-old ban on pit bull ownership. According to county records, between June 1, 2012 and June 30, 2013, the Broward County Sheriff’s Office received nearly two-hundred-fifty calls related to injuries suffered due to animal bites. Of those reported injuries, seventeen were pit bull attacks, six were Unks attacks, and three were Rottweiler attacks. The overwhelming majority of the incidents–over one-hundred-fifty of the calls–were reports of attacks by an unidentified breed.

Pit bull attacks 13-month-old baby in Dania Beach, www.miamiherald.com July 3, 2013

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frontier crash.png A family faced devastating tragedy on Manhattan’s Upper West Side on the morning of Tuesday, June 4, when a teenager driving his parent’s SUV without a license struck and killed a four-year-old and injured her grandmother. According to authorities, the accident occurred at West 97th Street and Amsterdam Avenue around 8:15 a.m. Franklin Reyes, the seventeen-year-old teenager driving the SUV, a Nissan Frontier, crashed into a restaurant on the ground floor of an apartment building where four-year-old Ariel Russo and her fifty-eight-year-old grandmother Katie Gutierrez were located. Both Russo and Gutierrez were pinned against a gate and as Reyes reversed, he may have struck both females again.

Authorities believe that Reyes was operating the Frontier at approximately 34 mph at the time of the accident, which is 4 mph over the speed limit on New York City streets. Both Russo and Gutierrez were transported to a local hospital following the crash. Russo was pronounced dead after arriving at the hospital, but Gutierrez is in stable condition.

Officers had attempted to stop the Frontier about ten blocks south of the accident scene when they noticed wide turns from far lanes and reckless driving. Although Reyes initially pulled the Frontier over, as two officers approached the car, he sped away. This is when Reyes headed north and made a left onto 97th street, where he crashed into the building. Reyes was arrested at the scene on charges of manslaughter and vehicular manslaughter. He was transported to the hospital after complaining of difficulty breathing. Authorities state that Reyes had a permit, but not a driver’s license, and was operating his parent’s vehicle without permission. Police are investigating whether Reyes’ lack of driving experience contributed to the accident.

Child killed by car after driver flees car stop, www.palmbeachpost.com June 4, 2013

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