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September 2010 Archives

Are Segways Safe to Ride?

Many Segway disasters arise from overconfident and under-trained riders and can lead to surprisingly serious injuries. The recent death of Segway Inc. owner James (Jimi) Heselden has triggered the question as to whether or not two-wheeled scooters are really safe for people to ride. USA Today reported Heselden, 62, drove his Segway off a cliff at his estate in England, resulting in an unfortunate death.

A Boston personal injury attorney might come across a Segway-related case, considering such injuries are currently on the rise. Mary Pat McKay, who leads a study on Segway injuries, said most accidents result from people bumping into immobile objects, losing control and not putting their hands up in time to prevent a head injury. After evaluating 41 case reports of Segway injuries, the study discovered that 24 percent of those injured were admitted to a hospital.

Rapin Osathanondh Settles Wrongful Death Lawsuit

Rapin Osathanondh, 67, was criminally charged for the death of 22-year-old Laura Hope Smith after performing an abortion on the Sandwich resident three years ago. He also settled a civil suit in Barnstable Superior Court and agreed to pay $2 million to Tom and Eileen Smith, the victim's parents.

An MA personal injury lawyer could see how delicate and complicated a case like this can be. Laura Smith's mother stated "Laura got justice, but it's a tragedy all the way around."

At the time of Smith's abortion, Rapin Osathanondh was a research associate at the Harvard School of Public Health. He was one of the researchers who found a revolutionary method for inducing early labor in women whose fetuses had died. He practiced at the Women's Health Center in Hyannis which is now closed down. Laura Smith underwent the abortion there in September of 2007.

GM Announces Cadillac CTS Recall for Potential Leg Injuries

General Motors alerted safety officials about potential leg injuries that may occur in a vehicle crash for consumers driving the Cadillac CTS model. GM came across the issue while performing crash test simulations. According to CNN Money, GM recalled 20,224 model year 2009 and 2010 Cadillac CTS all-wheel-drive cars and CTS-V performance sedans. The Cadillac CTS recall is due to possible leg injuries in car accidents for unbelted passengers from non-compliant glove boxes. 

These glove boxes 2009 and 2010 Cadillacs have been found to not conform with federal safety requirements. The cars fail in effectively protecting smaller passengers, who aren't wearing seatbelts, from leg injuries in car accidents. GM explained to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration that in the event of a collision, a small person not wearing a seatbelt in the front passenger seat faces a higher risk of injury to the femur, the long thigh bone, than permitted under federal law.

Taxi Rescue By MBTA Worker: What Is A Good Samaritan Law?

WHDH Boston reports that a man can thank an MBTA worker for saving his life after a taxi crashed into a tree and was set on fire. MBTA worker John Bailey rescued a passenger from a taxi as it was about to burst into flames. The MBTA worker and others gathered around the car while someone called 911. However, he noticed that flames were shooting out from the engine. He said: "Everyone was talking about 911. My instinct was just go down to the car and see who's in that car and get them out."

He pulled the passenger out of the taxi. Officials say that because of his actions, he saved the passenger's life. Arlington Fire Chief Robert Jefferson told WHDH: "They [Bailey's actions] were heroic. If he had not pulled that gentleman out of the car there could have been a lot more serious injuries."

A Bicycle Accident Leads To Criminal Charges For Driver

While a bicycle accident may not surprise a Boston personal injury lawyer, this particular case may shock attorneys because it led to criminal charges against the driver. The Daily News of Newburyport reports that 83 year old Edward G. Robinson of Malden has been charged with negligent driving and failure to stay within marked lanes.

The charges stem from an accident that happened on Sept. 10. Edward Robinson hit Barbara Nachmias-Kedesdy with his Toyota Corolla as she was riding her bicycle close to Plum Island Airfield. She was taken to Anna Jaques Hospital in Newburyport and then transported to Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center. She sustained serious, but not life threatening injuries.

Suicide Of Football Player Owen Thomas Linked To Brain Injury

A Boston personal injury attorney is aware of the terrible consequences of sports related brain injuries. However, parents of athletes may not be. More and more research indicates that even mild traumatic brain injuries sustained in sports can affect you. ABC News reports that traumatic brain injuries associated from playing basketball has increased 70 percent between 1997 and 2007. The article chronicles how young basketball player Niki Popyer has suffered from 11 concussions. As a result, she can barely attend a full day of school without a struggle.

Football players are not faring any better. Shortly after his suicide, CNN reports that an autopsy requested by researchers from Boston University of football player Owen Thomas indicates that he may have suffered from the mild stages of brain damage seen in retired or aging athletes. This type of brain damage can possibly cause neurobehavioral disorders and bizarre behavior.

Weight Loss Drug Meridia May Be Pulled Off The Market

The Wall Street Journal reports that the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is considering taking the weight loss drug Meridia off the market. The FDA has asked a panel of experts to weigh the cardiovascular risks of the drug and then vote on if the drug should remain on the market.

According to NPR, the panel was assembled by the FDA after a recent study sponsored by Abbott Labs (maker of Meridia) found an increased risk in patients taking the diet drug for non-fatal heart attacks and strokes. Further reports indicate that young patients who show no risk factors for cardiovascular disease (other than obesity) have died after using the drug.

Driver In Tom Brady's Car Accident Has A Record Of Offenses

As every Boston personal injury lawyer and resident of Beantown probably knows, New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady got into a car accident early Thursday morning. WCVB Boston reports that what people may not know is that the Brockton resident charged with running a red light before the accident has a record of driving offenses that includes multiple license suspensions. The other driver, Ludgerio Rodrigues, has a record that indicates that he has had three seat belt violations, refused a Breathalyzer test, and drove multiple times without an inspection sticker.

Reporters were unable to locate him for any comments about this recent accident.

The two car accident occurred at the intersection of Commonwealth Avenue and Gloucester Street. Witnesses say that the red minivan that Ludgerio Rodrigues was driving ran through a red light and sent Brady's car into a utility pole. He was charged by police for failure to stop at a red light.

Immigration Scam Targets Illegal Irish Immigrants

The Boston Herald reports that undocumented Irish immigrants in the Boston area are being targeted in an immigration scam. In move that would shock a Boston personal injury lawyer, it seems that the individuals behind this scam are fellow attorneys. The immigration scam involves Irish illegal immigrants being approached by lawyers who claim that they can get the immigrants a green card in the span of six months for $15,000. Authorities say that this often is not the case and that the attorneys just pocket the money and disappear.

According to WCVB Boston, immigrants who have been approached by attorneys promising green cards in a small amount of time for a fee should report the matter to authorities. Eva Millona, executive director of the Massachusetts Immigrants & Refugee Advocacy Coalition told WCVB Boston that there have been scams like this in other immigrant groups such as Latinos and Brazilians in the Boston metro area.

Baljit Singh Hurt In A Freak Accident With A Fire Hose

WCVB Boston reports that 48 year old Baljit Singh had to be hospitalized after a fire hose snapped and hit a street sign, which in turn struck the Somerville resident. The fire hose was attached to a fire truck that responded to a two alarm fire at 10 Fisk Avenue at approximately 12:45 am. The fire hose that snapped off was still attached to the fire hydrant. As a result, the fire hose took down a fence in a nearby yard and a street sign. The street sign then hit Baljit Singh in the head.

Mr. Singh suffered from a fractured neck and 6 inch wound on his head from the impact. While he is expected to make a full recovery, his sister, Manpreet Kalia said that she was confused as to how he even sustained the injuries to begin with. She told WCVB Boston: "We had no idea. We just came out and we saw the fence broken and him on the floor."

Deadly Condo Explosion Leads To AG Investigation

A fatal blast in a Massachusetts condo project back in July has prompted the state Attorney General to probe into the delivery of defective propane. WCVB Boston reports that Attorney General Martha Coakley has revealed that the propane from the Westfield facility did not have an important element: odorant to alert property owners of a possible leak. A Boston personal injury attorney would tell you that this revelation can be a cause for concern.

State officials commenced their investigation after a fire marshal discovered that it was a propane leak that caused the fatal explosion in Norfolk. The propane came from the Westfield facility. Workers in Norfolk claimed that they could not smell the leak. The deadly explosion took the life of a construction worker.

ER Doctor Andrew McAfee Killed In Scooter Crash

The Boston Herald reports that Brigham and Women's Hospital ER doctor Andrew McAfee was killed in a scooter crash on Beacon Street last week. According to the Boston police, the accident is still under investigation and no one has been charged. While Boston police have indicated that the scooter crash did not occur because of a lack of safety precautions, there are many who worry about the safety of motor scooters.

However, motor scooter advocates say that if the scooters are ridden within the parameters of the law, they are perfectly safe. John Paul, a manager of traffic safety for AAA told the Boston Herald: "Motor scooters when ridden in the confines of the law are very safe, but people need to be aware of the conditions around them. People need to drive defensively - which is probably an understatement. You have to be as aware as possible. You have to be as aware as you can be of everything around you, just like you do in any vehicle."