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Jasper Personal Injury Law Blog

What is the “reasonable standard of care” for nursing homes?

If you are among the many people across Alabama who have had to make the difficult decision to place an older loved one in a nursing home, you probably understand just how difficult a task this can be. When you entrust someone else with providing care for your loved one, you want to believe that this person will provide the same degree of love and attention that you would, but unfortunately this is not always the case. Employees of nursing homes and continuing care facilities must exercise a “reasonable standard of care” when providing for your loved one, but this is a difficult concept, and related matters are not always black and white.

According to NursingHomeAbuseGuide.org, whether an act falls within the “reasonable standard of care” for nursing homes varies broadly based on case and individual-specific considerations. In other words, what constitutes a reasonable standard of care in one situation may not do so for another, leaving room for disagreement and possible litigation.

Explosions a common cause of fatal mining accidents

The mining industry provides people throughout central Alabama with a way to earn a living. Though this occupation can pay well, you likely also know that you face certain risks when on the job. Mining is labor-intensive and presents hazards that could easily result in your suffering serious work-related injuries.

Though coal mining deaths have dramatically decreased since the early part of the 20th century, too many individuals still suffer fatal injuries in the course of this occupation. The potential for dangerous gases in the ground and the use of explosives on the job often present the biggest risks for mining accidents.

Fatal work injury statistics in America

When you show up to your Alabama job each day, you probably do not give too much thought to whether you are risking your life just by doing so, but in actuality, thousands of American workers suffer fatal work injuries every year. At The Sapp Law Firm, we understand the factors and professions that place you at a higher risk of an on-the-job fatality, and we have assisted many people who have suffered injury or lost a loved one because of an injury that occurred in the workplace.

Per the U.S. Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics, 4,836 Americans suffered fatal work injuries in 2015 alone, which is the highest number of work-related fatalities recorded in the nation since 2008. Your chance of becoming a victim may increase if you have certain risk factors, such as old age or Hispanic or Latino heritage. Seniors over the age of 65 suffered 650 fatal work injuries in 2015, while Hispanic and Latino workers suffered 903 fatal on-the-job injuries during that same time.

What is causing Alabama’s car accidents?

Every time you travel by car in Alabama, you assume at least some level of risk. Even if you consistently follow safe driving practices and the rules of the road, you still run the risk of getting into an accident caused by the actions or negligence of another. Furthermore, other factors, such as road construction, changing traffic patterns and so on can also cause confusion and associated crashes. There are, however, some things that factor into Alabama car accidents far more than others, and understanding what is causing the state’s traffic accidents may help you avoid suffering injury or death while on the road.

The single-biggest factor contributing to Alabama’s fatal car accidents, according to the Alabama Department of Transportation, is speed. While less than 1 percent of the state’s auto accidents end in death, speed was to blame for 125 fatal traffic crashes in 2015. It is also worth noting that the number of traffic fatalities rise sharply when alcohol enters the picture. So much so, in fact, that your risk of dying in an alcohol-related accident is 7.6 times greater than it is a standard traffic accident where alcohol is not involved.

Nursing home red flags

If you have ever had to select an Alabama nursing home or continuing care facility for your loved one, you probably understand just how difficult and emotionally taxing the process can be. Not all nursing homes offer the nurturing, caring environments you want for your loved one, and problems caused by high turnover, low wages and overworked staff members plague many such facilities, making it difficult to determine the place where your loved one would fare best. At The Sapp Law Firm, L.L.C., we are well-versed in the problems plaguing many modern nursing homes, and we have represented many clients who have loved ones they suspect might be victims of nursing home abuse or neglect.

Per U.S. News & World Report, performing your due diligence and conducting thorough research on a prospective facility from the outset can improve your chances of leaving your loved one in a place where you can feel confident in the care he or she will receive. It is also wise to look for certain signs that may indicate an inferior nursing home or care facility, such as a particularly high noise level. If you note loud noises soon after entering a potential facility, this may indicate even more chaos behind the scenes. Loud environments can also increase stress among some seniors, including those with dementia and related conditions.

Injuries common among restaurant workers

If you work in an Alabama restaurant, you face certain job-specific hazards that differ from those employed in other industries. Many of the injuries suffered by food service workers across the state and nation are similar in nature, and many of them are serious and can have significant impacts on your overall quality of life. At the Sapp Law Firm, L.L.C., we understand how difficult it can be to stay afloat and provide for your family following an on-the-job accident, and we have represented many clients who suffered injury as a result of their hospitality industry jobs.

Per Food Newsfeed, American restaurant workers suffered more than 190,000 job-related injuries in 2014 alone, and many of these injuries fall within similar categories. You run a serious risk of suffering burns as a restaurant industry worker, for example, because of your regular work around hot plates, grills, liquids and so on. Your employer can reduce your risk of a burn injury by properly training you and making sure that you don protective gear when necessary, such as relying on towels or pads to protect your hands when carrying hot plates.

The do’s and don’ts of driving around big rigs

Every time you take to the roads in Alabama, you run the risk of coming in contact with commercial trucks, and even if you always maintain safe driving practices, sharing the road with such large, heavy vehicles poses various risks. At the Sapp Law Firm, L.L.C., we have a firm understanding of the types of accidents and injuries that often result from car-and-truck crashes, and we have helped many clients seek recourse after suffering injury because of the actions of negligent truck drivers.

While it is true that there is only so much you can do if semi-truck drivers do not drive safely and follow the rules of the road, there are, per Edmunds.com, a number of steps you can take to reduce your chance of becoming a truck accident victim. For example, it is essential that you leave truck drivers ample room to stop, should you decide to pass and then get in front of one. Commercial trucks often weigh tens of thousands of pounds, so even if you feel as if you are leaving them enough space to effectively stop, you may not be doing so.

Diagnosed with black lung? Alabama miners deserve benefits.

Mining is an inherently dangerous profession. No matter what type of mining, the men and women who work in this industry face various risks every time they show up for work. These risks are due not only to the threat of an accident, but also because of the various illnesses linked with the mining profession.

Because of all the coal dust and other toxic materials associated with mining, lung diseases are rather common for miners. As you may know, one of the most common of these is black lung.

Motorcycle dangers due to other vehicles

If you or a loved one is among the many motorcycle enthusiasts in Alabama, you will want to make sure and understand the various risks faced when enjoying the open road on two wheels. While anyone on the road faces the potential of being in an accident, those on motorcycles are at a greater disadvantage than their counterparts in cars, trucks, SUVs or other vehicles.

Just what types of situations should bikers be on the lookout for? Autos Cheat Sheet describes the most common scenarios for motorcycle accidents. Of the top 10, five of them involve other vehicles. In first place on the list of the top dangers for bikers are cars approaching from the oncoming lanes of traffic. Accidents can happen when a distracted, drunk or fatigued driver moves into the motorcylist's lane. Second is a car waiting to turn that ends up turning in front of a biker.

The dangers of sharing the road with teen drivers

As an Alabama motorist, you assume a certain level of risk every time you take to the roadway, and this is particularly true during hours and times of the year when more teen drivers are out behind the wheel. When inexperience and dangerous driving behaviors combine, the results can prove deadly, endangering you as well as any passengers you may have. At the Sapp Law Firm, L.L.C., we have a firm understanding of the additional dangers teen drivers often pose, and we have helped many clients who suffered injury or hardship because of another motorist’s negligence.

You are especially likely to get in an accident with a teen driver, per the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, if the driver is male and falls between the ages of 16 and 19. If a teen's driver’s license has only been valid for a few months, this, too, enhances the chances of a crash, as does the presence of other teen passengers within the same car. Certain behaviors common among teens also increase their chances of involvement in car accidents.

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