Boston Personal Injury News - Find a Boston Injury Lawyer

November 2010 Archives

Teenage Driver Charged for Crashing into Bicyclist

Last month, a 16-year-old Jamaican Plain girl crashed into a 65-year-old cyclist while driving her mother's Dodge Caravan. According to the Boston Herald, the teenager dragged the bicyclist nearly 200 feet with the vehicle before leaving the scene. The Suffolk County District Attorney's Office said the victim suffered multiple broken bones and other injuries from the hit-and-run accident.

The 65-year-old also had a punctured lung and rib fractures that left him hospitalized for around three weeks. Massachusetts state troopers were able to find the 16-year-old after gathering information from those who saw the accident. Police officials located the van, which matched the descriptions given by witnesses, and said the juvenile supposedly confessed to being behind the wheel during the time of the accident.

Vincent Cila's Family Settles Wrongful Death Suit

Massachusetts state trooper Vincent Cila was killed in July 2005 after he fell off his motorcycle and plummeted into the handrails in a Big Dig tunnel in Boston, according to the Boston Herald. Cila's family filed a wrongful death suit against the Massachusetts Turnpike Authority and several other contractors in Suffolk Superior Court, seeking remedial compensation for the fatality.

When an individual is killed as a result of another's alleged negligence or misconduct, it is often referred to as wrongful death. Wrongful death actions are commonly filed by the victim's immediate and surviving family, called distributees, and are brought about by the personal representative (usually a lawyer) of the decedent's estate. The damages awards from this kind of action belong to the estate and may be distributed among different parties as expressed in the deceased's will.

Tips To Help Reduce Sports and Brain Injuries

While sports participation helps children learn the importance of teamwork and exercise, Bloomberg reports children's sports also have one of the highest rates of injuries. The U.S. National Institutes of Health revealed nearly 38 million kids and teenagers are involved in organized sports. Safe Kids USA, an advocacy group, said one out of ten young sports athletes requires medical attention for a sports injury.

Most sport-related injuries in Boston may result in bruises, sprains, head injuries, and sometimes death. According to CBS News, concussions and dehydration are also common factors that may lead to serious sports injuries. Concussions can alter the way the brain normally works, and many doctors recommend that children do not return to play until they are properly treated.

Black Friday May Lead to Potential Injuries for Boston Shoppers

“Black Friday” is considered a significant day for Boston shoppers to take advantage of the tremendous discounts retailers offer during this annual day-after-Thanksgiving sale. Retailers will hire hundreds of part-time, seasonal, and temporary employees to prepare for thousands of consumers that may spend money in their store. At the same time, Black Friday also raises concerns on safety for shoppers and employees alike.

Store owners are responsible for keeping their premises safe and free from any dangerous risks that may cause injury to shoppers and employees. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OHSA) issued crowd control regulations for retailers a year after a 38-year-old employee was killed when a stampede of shoppers charged into a Wal-Mart in New York. Other common injuries that can occur on store grounds during Black Friday include:

Hazing Still A Prominent Problem in MA Schools

25 years ago, Governor Michael Dukakis signed Massachusetts’ anti-hazing bill into law in an effort to cut down hazing in schools. Yet, many parents and students remain confused about what constitutes as hazing. It may be more obvious in instances like when American International College’s Zeta Chi pledge Jay Lenaghan was encouraged to keep drinking until he passed out and died. Classifying hazing where no evident bodily harm was made may be a little more complex.

For example, The Boston Globe reported Needham High School’s soccer girls faced allegations of blindfolding younger teammates, forcing one to wear a dog collar, and smacking the other two girls’ faces with pies. The school said their actions unmistakably violated MA anti-hazing laws and prohibited the players from playing in a state tournament. The parents of the girls were furious at the decision and ended up filing a lawsuit against the school.

Lorillard Tobacco Company Faces Wrongful Death Suit

Boston local Marie Evans died from lung cancer in 2002 after smoking cigarettes since the age of thirteen. According to the Associated Press, her son has filed a rather unusual wrongful death suit in a Boston court against Lorillard Tobacco Company, the maker of Newport cigarettes. The lawsuit claims Lorillard handed out free samples of their cigarettes in urban neighborhoods with the intent to lure Marie Evans and other black children to become smokers.

A wrongful death cause of action must include the element of negligence and show that the defendants misconduct or negligence caused a person’s death. Evans’ Boston personal injury attorneys will have to find a way to prove that the North-Carolina-based tobacco company was negligent in handing out free cigarettes to impressionable children, and that its negligence led to Marie Evans’ death.

Stuart Wilkerson Gets Hit By An MTBA Employee

The Associated Press reported an MTBA customer service agent was recently involved in an altercation with an angry rider. The heated verbal exchange between the two led to the employee punching the rider, Stuart Wilkerson in the face. The MTBA agent was immediately fired after the incident.

Stuart Wilkerson claimed the employee had given him the wrong train directions to Providence. The agent refused to give Wilkerson her name when he complained about the inaccurate directions. When he tried to use his cell phone camera to take a photo of the agent, she allegedly struck Wilkerson in the face and whacked the cell phone out of his hand.

Older Drivers Face Higher Safety Risks

Keeping senior drivers safe and mobile has become a challenge in many metro cities like Boston. According to the Boston Herald, the safety board will be carrying out a two-day forum starting today to evaluate the safety risks older drivers face.

The National Transportation Safety Board reported more than one out of five licensed drivers will be 65 years of age or older within the next year. Healthy senior drivers are not less safe than younger drivers per se, but older individuals do face age-related medical conditions that may affect their ability to drive. Drivers who are at least 40-years-old need 20 times more light to see at night compared to a 20-year-old.

Judyann Lamothe Killed In Bus Accident

Authorities reported Lowell resident Judyann Lamothe was killed on her 53rd birthday as she tried to catch a bus. According to the Boston Herald, Lamothe fell under the wheels of the Lowell Regional Transit Authority bus that was stopped at a red light. Lamothe allegedly lost her footing and fell under the bus as it turned onto the next street once the light changed.

The bus was on the corner of Central and Middlesex streets when Judyann Lamothe started beating on the side of the vehicle while it waited for the light to turn green. Lowell police captain Kelly Richardson said "indications are now that she fell under the wheels of the bus" once it began to turn onto Middlesex. The bus driver stopped immediately and called local law enforcement.

Jury Selection Begins For Wrongful Death Trial

According to Enterprise News, school bus driver Tracy A. Lopes ran into a disabled pedestrian in Brockton in 2007 and now faces a civil injury trial. Today, jury selection has begun in Boston for the Raynham local's vehicle-pedestrian accident case concerning the death of 46-year-old Brockton resident Lisa Herlihy.

Herlihy's sister Kim Berggren had filed a wrongful death suit against Lopes and her employer, the First Student Inc. bus company, this past December. According to Berggren's Boston personal injury attorney Mark Petti, his client is the executor of Lisa Herlihy's estate and is suing for "unspecified damages." The lawsuit claims Tracy Lopes was grossly negligent when she struck and killed Herlihy.

Kevin Kelley's Family Files Wrongful Death Suit

According to the Boston Globe, the family of Boston firefighter Kevin Kelley has filed a wrongful death lawsuit against six companies who were contracted by the city to take care of the braking systems on the fire truck Kelley died in the year before. Boston Fire Department Ladder 26 experienced disastrous brake failure, causing the fire truck to roll down Parker Hill Avenue. The vehicle smashed through a brick wall and led to Kelley's immediate death.

The lawsuit claims the companies were completely negligent, installed the wrong parts, offered faulty brake work, and failed to recognize the mistakes with thorough inspection. The suit alleges the companies' negligence affected the truck's inability to stop and caused the fatal collision that killed Kevin Kelley. It also says that over time, the defendants improperly set up and replaced the brake linings with the wrong parts.