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Miami Personal Injury Law Blog

Jury selection begins in first J&J hip implants trial

Florida hip implant patients could be interested in the fact that, on Sept. 2, jury selection began in the first Johnson & Johnson metal-on-metal hip implant lawsuit. A 58-year-old Montana graphic designer brought the suit. She alleges that the chromium and cobalt material used in her artificial hips was the cause of pain that made surgical removal of the devices a necessity. She underwent the implant surgery in both hips in 2009 and had them removed in 2011, according to court filings. Prior to the surgeries to remove the implants, tests showed dangerous chromium and cobalt levels in her bloodstream that indicated levels of cobalt blood serum at 85 times higher than normal.

J&J, which is the largest health care company in the world, is facing 8,000 claims that their metal-on-metal version of ASR hip implants had a defective design that caused metal debris to leech into the bloodstreams of patients who received the implants. In August 2010, the company recalled 93,000 ASR hip implants, stating that 12 percent of them were failing within five years. However, the actual figure, according to internal company documents, was 37 percent in 4.6 years. The failure rate in Australia was 44 percent for a seven-year period.

What can I do if I was injured on a cruise ship?

Florida residents and visitors may find it enjoyable to embark on a cruise, and most do not set out with concerns about problems. While most passengers will not have any incidents during their travels, it is helpful to know how to deal with cruise ship accidents in case anything goes wrong. An injury while at sea or in a port of call should be reported promptly, and treatment should be sought. It is also important to collect information from witnesses and to document the situation photographically or with video, especially if there may be issues of negligence at play.

Injuries may occur in a variety of circumstances. Food poisoning incidents can be serious, often affecting multiple passengers. In some cases, cruise companies will include terms on tickets that allow for refunds due to food-related illnesses. Slips and falls are also possible on a cruise ship. Slippery conditions are especially serious, making it important to watch for water on surfaces near pools and on other deck surfaces. Dance floors that are poorly maintained could also contribute to slip-and-fall incidents, as could other floor coverings that have come loose.

1 killed, 1 injured in fatal accident on Florida highway

A 53-year-old man is dead after an accident that occurred on Florida's Interstate 95 on Aug. 30. One day after the incident, Florida Highway Patrol was still investigating why the driver of an SUV veered into the victim's adjacent vehicle. All lanes of the southbound highway were closed as the scene was investigated and cleared.

The accident reportedly happened when a 35-year-old woman was driving an SUV and veered outside her lane, hitting the back of another vehicle on her right. The driver of the vehicle that was hit lost control, and the car flipped over, ejecting the male driver. The SUV then veered back toward the median and hit the barrier, causing this driver to be ejected as well. The drivers of both vehicles were taken to a local hospital where the man was pronounced dead. There was no information concerning the woman's condition at the time of the report.

$15 million judgement in Florida truck accident

Falsification of paper trucking logs played a significant role in the conclusion of a case involving a fatal truck and motorcycle collision. Two motorcyclists perished in the 2011 incident involving a tractor-trailer. Discrepancies were shown between paper logs and a black box that electronically tracks driving and resting hours. According to information presented, the driver of the tractor-trailer recorded 10 hours of driving time while the black box showed 11 hours and 10 minutes. Additionally, the driver logged 10 hours of rest time while actual data showed no more than eight hours of rest in the 30-hour period prior to the accident.

The imposition of regulations related to safety in truck driving allows paper logs until 2015, and the accident occurred well in advance of the deadline for transitioning to electronic logging. However, the attorney representing the family of one of the deceased motorcyclists indicated that many companies in that time frame had switched logging methods and that lack of proper logging allowed for falsification of data, contributing to the incident.

Property owners and their responsibility for safety

Florida residents who are injured in slip-and-fall accidents may interested in knowing their legal options for recourse. In some instances, these kinds of accidents could have been prevented. Property owners are obligated to take reasonable actions to assure the safety of their premises.

A property owner's liability for an accident is determined based on the due diligence most owners would have performed to correct a potential hazard. A cardinal rule is whether or not a reasonable person would have perceived a situation or circumstance to be dangerous. If the answer is yes, then the owner could be found liable by not having taken steps to remedy it.

2 fatalities prompt recall of 2 million Ace Bayou bean bags

Florida parents may be interested in learning about a recent recall involving children's bean bag chairs. The defective product poses a choking and suffocation hazard, and it has been the cause of two reported deaths.

The recall applies to two particular types of the bean bag chairs manufactured by Ace Bayou and sold prior to July 2013 in places such as Walmart, Bon-Ton, Amazon.com and the company's website at acebayou.com. The company issued the recall after it was reported that two children died from using the defective bean bags. According to the report, the two children suffocated on the bean bag's foam beads after they crawled through the zippered opening.

A pair of nursing homes under scrutiny

Signature Healthcare of Port Charlotte and The Woods at Manatee Springs in Bradenton were both added to the Florida nursing home watch list. Signature Healthcare was put on the list after reports that an 85-year-old quadriplegic was not revived despite being found unresponsive.

The Woods at Manatee Springs was put on the list after an incident where a resident who had dementia and a history of falls fell while using the restroom. He was not found until nine hours after the incident and required care for a fractured shoulder.

2 injured after car barrels into South Florida gift shop

Authorities reported that a car recently crashed into the front of a Miami Beach shop. The August 11 incident transpired at approximately 7 a.m. and left two people with injuries.

Details about the incident were not clear in the immediate aftermath of the incident. Police indicated that investigators are looking into whether there was a traffic accident that preceded the incident and if any other factors 'played a role" in the event.

Florida accident seriously injures former mayor of Hialeah

An accident in Miami on I-95 seriously injured Julio Martinez, who was the mayor of Hialeah from 1990 to 1993. The 71-year-old former mayor was hurt in the Aug. 4 accident while he was helping a friend change a tire. Martinez went to Ryder Trauma Center at Jackson Memorial Hospital after the collision and was reportedly in critical condition as of Aug. 6.

Martinez was said to be between his Mercedes and his friend's Dodge Ram when a man driving a Honda Accord south near the northwest 95th Street exit lost control and struck the Dodge. The Dodge hit the Mercedes, and Martinez was thrown onto pavement several feet away. The El Nuevo Herald reported that his wife said the former mayor had surgery on Monday and Tuesday.

Reckless driver injures 2 on Florida causeway

A man is facing criminal charges for driving recklessly and causing a three-vehicle accident that critically injured two in Miami, Florida, recently. The man could also face personal injury action from the injured plaintiffs, who police say are in critical condition following the accident on Thursday, Aug. 7.

According to accident reports, the 34-year-old from Texas was allegedly traveling over 80 mph in a 40 mph zone on the causeway when the accident occurred. Witnesses say the Ford F-150 pickup changed lanes and hit a white Mazda passenger car that was sitting still at a red light. Upon impact, the car was pushed and hit the side of a BMW.

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