Articles Posted in Personal Injury

Published on:

More details have been discovered about the driver who left a 27-year-old pregnant woman from Massachusetts dead in a poolside cabana at the Riverside Hotel in Fort Lauderdale.

The incident occurred March 18 when Rosa Maria Rivera, of Plantation, Florida, lost control of her car and crashed into the cabana, killing the seven months’ pregnant woman.

Rivera reported to a police officer that “she had an argument with her husband at a restaurant and sped off in her car just before the collision,” according to a search warrant reported by the Sun Sentinel.

Published on:

Cruise ship Lifeboat.jpg
That’s the question many skeptical vacationers are asking themselves these days, with all the cruise ship safety issues surfacing this year. From norovirus to shipwreck and onboard fire, the cruise industry is now under tough scrutiny.

This week, its leaders gather in Miami for the 28th annual Cruise Shipping Miami conference, along with 1,000 exhibiting companies and around 11,000 attendees from 110 countries.

Published on:

Two U.S. law firms are filing class-action lawsuits against Costa Cruises, asking for at least $160,000 per passenger involved in last week’s resort tort disaster, according to the BBC. The shipwreck left 11 people dead, hundreds injured, and 21 still missing.

Owned by Miami-based Carnival Group, Costa Cruises blamed the captain of the Costa Concordia for veering off course and crashing into a rock, causing the ship to half sink. The captain has denied the charges of suspected manslaughter, for which he remains under house arrest.

A civil claim is being filed against him in Italy while lawsuits will reportedly be filed in Miami this week against Costa Cruises, with claimants seeking compensation for “continued medical care, loss of earnings as well as the psychological impact they had suffered while trying to get off the ship,” reports the BBC. Liability against the company will point to regular route deviations in the past, lack of safeguards on board, and the alarm system.

Published on:

One week following the Titanic-like cruise ship disaster in the Mediterranean, the death toll reports have risen to 11, with 21 people still unaccounted for. The search for the missing has been paused several times due to the dangers of the ship’s instability atop the rock where it sits half submerged. The magnitude of the resort tort lawsuits to follow is yet to be seen.

The Coast Guard transcript of the exchange between the Guard and the ship’s captain was released to the press and revealed a contradiction from the captain’s original public statement following the accident. The day of the incident, the captain stated that reports of him abandoning ship before the evacuation was complete were untrue. He stated that he and his officers were the last to leave the ship.

Translations of the transcript vary. Among the pieces published by The Washington Post:

Published on:

Stormy Cruise Ship.jpgThe Cruise Vessel Security and Safety Act signed into United States law in July 2010 seems to be firmly in place, not that it can totally prevent crimes or personal injury.

As the Act requires, Royal Caribbean recently reported an alleged rape aboard one of its ships to the FBI and BSO, and allowed both to investigate the ship and port. The ship’s ‘guest care team’ also offered the alleged victim assistance including medical care and counseling, according to a statement from the cruise line’s manager of Global Corporate Communications, as reported in the Sun Sentinel.

The Sentinel article says that a 15-year-old girl from Iowa said she was lured from a teen dance club on board to a private room, where a 15-year-old boy said there would be a party. Instead, she said, there was only another man there, and the two of them raped her.

Both males live in Brazil, are being held in Broward, and appeared in court last Wednesday. The elder, a 20-year-old, was accused of one count of committing a lewd and lascivious act, ordered not leave the tri-county area and denied access to his or a replacement passport. The younger was charged with lewd and lascivious battery and held at the Broward Juvenile Assessment Center.

The International Cruise Victims Association (ICV) represents victims of crime on cruise ships, their families and friends, and individuals concerned about the problems of victimization and disappearances on cruise ships. The organization advocates for legislative reform to protect passengers from crimes and increase the rights of victims of crimes that do occur on cruise ships, and provides support to victims of crimes occurring on cruise ships.

The National Association for Victims of Crimes and the Rape, Assault, and Incest National Network (RAINN) have joined ICV in the effort to promote reform to the Cruise Line Industry.

The National Crime Victim Bar Association is a network of attorneys and allied professionals dedicated to facilitating civil actions brought by crime victims. Crime victims may be able to file civil lawsuits against perpetrators and responsible third parties for the damages the victims suffered as a result of the crime. Personal injury attorney John Elliott Leighton serves on the Advisory Board of the National Crime Victim Bar Association.

Published on:

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration estimates that driving while distracted contributes to one in every four car crashes. By some estimates, in as many as half of all crashes (there were six million last year), cell phone use was involved.

A slight departure from Resort Torts, my campaign against DWD -“Driving While Distracted” – is an issue I am passionate about.

It’s encouraging that a jury has awarded the family of a woman killed in a car crash – believed to be caused by a texting driver – $8.8 million. But much is left to be done to keep peoples’ eyes on the road and not distracted with the myriad electronic devices they carry and those that are even built into the car.

Published on:

Naples Bay Resort evacuated 24 hotel guests and 20 employees from its premises after an explosion occurred around 9am Thursday.

The Naples Daily News reported that an electrical worker installing meters at the Resort suffered first-, second- and possibly third-degree burns to his upper body from an electrical flash fire. The cause of the explosion is unknown and is being investigated.

The Naples Fire Chief stated that the electrician’s life was saved only because he was wearing a face shield, eye protection and a fire-resistant shirt. The fireball was reportedly hot enough to vaporize nearby metal. A hotel corridor sustained smoke damage. The electrician was a subcontractor for FPL. Damages were estimated at $20,000.

Published on:

A deadly combination of factors in a Philadelphia waterway has left two tourists dead, a father of two young children jailed for a year, and several lawsuits still pending.

On the day of the incident, the operator of a 33-foot “Ride the Ducks” sightseeing boat anchored in a shipping channel of the Delaware River after detecting smoke and suspecting an onboard fire, cited CNN International. There were 35 passengers and two crew members on board.

Video footage shown on The Today Show revealed the shocking footage of a towed 250-foot sludge barge running over and submerging the tourist boat in a matter of seconds. Amazingly, only two tourists died in the accident.

Published on:

Sex-Drugs-Violence logoResort Torts are cases of civil liability for negligent or criminal acts in a resort, vacation or recreational setting. They can encompass a variety of legal cases, revealing that tourists, business travelers and locals alike are all exposed to risk while traveling, vacation, or engaging in resort or pleasure activities… including NIGHTCLUBS.

The Sun Sentinel reported this week that a nightclub in Broward County, advertised from Fort Pierce to Miami, is a regular stop for Sheriff’s deputies and city paramedics, for illegal drugs being sold and used, and for teenagers who have passed out, overdosed, or having seizures.

Pompano Beach Mayor Lamar Fisher said he receives weekly calls about the facility, from parents complaining about it. He wants the club’s electronic dance music shows at Club Cinema – which pull in more than 2,000 people – shut down.

Published on:

Orlando Map.jpgFrom seizure to broken bone, head injury to loss of an eyeball, twelve visitors to Orlando experienced first-hand during Q3 2011 the dangers that lurk in parks designed for amusement. Walt Disney World reported the most injuries for Q3, totaling seven.

Resort Torts can include a wide variety of legal cases but they all have one thing in common: Tourists, business travelers and locals alike are all exposed to risk while traveling, vacationing or engaging in resort and leisure activities.

According to the Orlando Sentinel, new filings with the state include the following injuries reported at Orlando theme parks:

Islands of Adventure
• A man from Puerto Rico had to have an eye removed after something stuck and lacerated it while he was riding the Dragon Challenge roller coaster in Universal Orlando’s Islands of Adventure. According to the Sentinel, the description in the report Universal provided the state was “eye discomfort”.

Walt Disney World
• An 18-year-old woman lost consciousness and experienced seizure-like symptoms in Castaway Creek.
• A woman injured an ankle on Mayday Falls.
• A woman lost consciousness after riding Mission: Space.
• A 16-year-old girl had a seizure on Star Tours.
• A woman fell and broke her leg at Haunted Mansion.
• Another woman fell and broke her leg on Prince Charming’s Regal Carousel.

Wet ‘n’ Wild, owned by NBCUniversal
• An 8-year-old boy suffered a head injury on Storm.

Amusement Park Injury Reporting
In 2001, The International Association of Amusement Parks and Attractions (IAAPA), the amusement park industry trade group, began producing its own injuries-per-ride-cycle figure for amusement rides (roller coasters, Ferris wheels, etc.) operated at fixed site locations. Their methodology is that IAAPA asks its members each year to report the number of riders they’ve processed through the turnstiles of their mechanical amusement rides, and the number of customers they know of who were treated by a doctor for injuries caused by any of those rides. They then come up with a number of patron rides taken each year, and an aggregated count of ride-related injuries parks reported knowing about.

This reporting system does not collect any information useful for analysis of accident patterns or development of prevention strategies. No information is collected that would identify the ride, the park, the age/size of patrons involved, the type of accident, or the injuries sustained.

With 82 million visitors each year, Florida and its many tourist attractions give rise to Resort Torts – cases of civil liability for negligent or criminal in a resort, vacation or recreational setting. Click here to contact a board certified civil trial specialist with 26 years of experience representing victims of negligence in personal injury matters.