The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration recently released its annual Traffic Safety Facts report detailing research covering 2013, and there’s some good news. After an increase in motor vehicle crash fatalities in 2012 – the first year-over-year increase since 2005 – 2013 saw a reduction in the number of people lost on America’s roadways.
The report shows that in 2013, 32,719 people were killed in crashes on US roadways, down from 33,782 in 2012. That 1,063-fataility difference represents a 3.1 percent drop. Non-fatal injuries declined as well, falling by 49,000, but still affecting some 2.3 million victims.
Such improvements were seen nearly every segment of the population – passenger vehicle occupants, large-truck occupants, pedestrians and young drivers. Among the highlights of the report:
- Passenger vehicle occupants killed in single-vehicle rollovers decreased 7.3 percent overall in 2013, and a full 12 percent in SUVs.
- The number of motorcyclists who lost their lives in 2013 dropped by six percent to 318.
- The number of people who died in alcohol-impaired crashes decreased by 2.5 percent to 10,076.
- The decrease in the number of young drivers involved in fatal crashes (358) from 2012 to 2013 makes up 33 percent of the decrease in all drivers involved during that same time period.
- Over the past 10 years, the number of fatalities on the nation’s roadways has been reduced nearly 25 percent.
Still even one life lost or serious injury suffered is too many. Despite the improvements, any auto accident can cause devastating injuries that affect victims for their entire lives, and the families of those lost are never the same. That’s why we here at Harrell and Harrell specialize in helping auto accident victims and their families to secure fair compensation for their losses. If you or someone you love was hurt or lost in a collision caused by someone else’s negligence, call 800-251-1111 to speak with a dedicated auto accident attorney in Jacksonville today.
This week’s team of the week go to the special group of kids at Jacksonville Beach Elementry School for their drive and commitment to run 100 miles!
Medications prescribed to treat low testosterone (low T) levels in men have been linked to a rise in heart attack and stroke risk. Affected patients and their families are fighting back by filing lawsuits now numbering more than 280 nationwide.
According to the master case list of the US Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation (JPML), the number of testosterone lawsuits filings across the country alleging heart attacks, blood clots and strokes hit 282 in January. They’re filed on behalf of men who suffered cardiovascular complications or even death believed to have been caused by use of certain testosterone replacement drugs. Plaintiffs and their attorneys allege that product manufacturers failed to warn doctors and patients about known risks associated with their medications.
The US Food and Drug Administration announced in January 2014 that it was reassessing the safety and efficacy of all FDA-approved low T therapy products. Later in the year, a study conducted jointly by the University of California, Los Angeles and the National Institutes of Health and Consolidated Research revealed a two-fold increase in the risk of heart attack in men under age 65 with a history of heart disease shortly after undergoing testosterone therapy treatment. Researchers also found a two-fold boost in heart attack risk for patients over 65, regardless of a history of coronary health issues.
Meanwhile, statistics show that the number of testosterone therapy prescriptions has tripled nationwide since 2001 – This despite the fact that clinical cases of Low-T remain relatively rare, affecting just five percent of men of all ages, and 20 percent of men age 70 and older. Many experts suspect that low T drug manufacturers may be using trumped up symptoms to push sales.
Among the frequently prescribed drugs named in testosterone lawsuits are:
If you or a man you love has suffered a cardiovascular issue that may have been caused by taking low testosterone medications, call 800-251-1111 to speak with a testosterone therapy attorney with Jacksonville’s Harrell and Harrell today.
Mebane, North Carolina-based Kidde has issued a voluntary recall of 4.8 million fire extinguishers, warning that they could fail just when needed most. The massive recall affects 31 different models of disposable fire extinguishers (designed not to be refilled) with plastic valves.
It’s that Zytel (a DuPont trademark) plastic valve that company officials and safety experts with the United States Consumer Product Safety Commission say can fail when repeatedly pressed and released. The move comes after receiving 11 reports of the Mexican-made fire extinguishers failing to properly work.
“Kidde has made this issue a high priority, with a number of teams assigned to investigate, resolve and communicate the issue,” Kidde officials said in a released statement. “In a small number of instances, Kidde found that a supplier built a component that is out of specification. Follow-up field testing found a low risk of the potential extinguishers not working as designed. However, there is no way to identify which units may fail to discharge as designed. Out of an abundance of caution, we have stopped shipment of affected extinguishers, are working cooperatively with the CPSC to recall any units on store shelves, and are working to replace affected units in homes.”
Most of the affected units were sold between August 2013 and November 2014 for $18 to $65 at major chain stores like Home Depot and Walmart throughout the US and Mexico. However, one model, the XL 5MR, sold for $200. They are red, white or silver in color and are either ABC or BC rated.
To determine whether you have one of the defective fire extinguishers, first check the nameplate affixed to the front of the fire extinguisher for one of the following model numbers:
- 1A 10BC
- 1A 10BCW
- FH/ RESSP
- KFH Twin
- M110 Twin
- M5 Twin
- Mariner 10
- Mariner 110
- Mariner 5
- Mariner 5 G
- XL 5MR
Then, check the date of manufacture, marked with a 10-digit date code on the side of the cylinder, near the bottom. Affected units were made between July 23, 2013 and October 15, 2014. To understand the date code, know that digits five through nine represent the day and year of manufacture in DDDYY format. For instance, a unit made on July 23 (the 204th day of the year) in 2013 will have the date code XXXX 20413 X. Date codes for recalled units manufactured in 2013 are XXXX 20413 X through XXXX 36513 X and 2014 are XXXX 00114 X through XXXX 28814 X. A full list of recalled models can be found on the CPSC website.
If you have suffered personal or property damage that you believe was caused by the failure of a recalled Kidde fire extinguisher, keep the unit intact and call 800-251-1111 to speak with a personal injury or product liability attorney with Jacksonville’s Harrell and Harrell. If no injuries or damage have occurred, call 855-283-7991 or visit the Kidde website to request a replacement.
The coaches at Ed White had a record number of signees on National Signing Day. Sports director Sam Kouvaris shows what it takes to make so many high school athletes and families proud.
David Kelly, one of the nation’s foremost safety experts, is being heavily courted to lead investigations on the part of a coalition of automakers into the defective Takata-made airbags responsible for multiple deaths and potentially hundreds of injuries. An alliance of at least ten car manufacturers reportedly is in late-stage talks with former National Highway Transportation Safety Administration Chief David Kelly to helm the probe.
Takata, a Japan-based airbag and seatbelt manufacturer, is under fire for a rash of incidents in which defective automobile airbags and airbag inflators exploded, sending shards of metal and plastic shrapnel flying through vehicle cabins and inflicting stab-like wounds in victims’ head, neck and chest areas. Thus far, at least five deaths and dozens of injuries have been linked to the issue. There is some indication that warm climate conditions, like those here in Florida, could exacerbate the problem, making the airbags more prone to rupturing. To date, ten automakers have recalled upward of 12 million vehicles in the US and some 19 million worldwide with Takata-made airbags installed.
If a deal is inked, Kelly and his group won’t be alone in the search for answers. Takata has assembled its own panel, led by former Secretary of Transportation Samuel Skinner, and the NHTSA’s deputy administrator, David Friedman, recently appointed an outside engineering firm to investigate the airbags and inflators as well.
If you or your dependents have suffered injuries that you believe may be connected to a recalled airbag, get medical treatment and call 800-251-1111 to talk with a Takata airbag recall attorney with Jacksonville’s Harrell and Harrell.
It’s a sport born in Europe, and now it’s making waves in Northeast Florida. What makes this sport so special is that anybody can play.
A recent survey by the US Department of Veterans Affairs shows that one in four women said they experienced sexual harassment or assault while serving in our nation’s military. It’s an infuriating issue made all the more serious by the fact that female veterans today represent the military’s fastest-growing population. Women vets number upward of 2.2 million – a full 10 percent of America’s veterans.
Despite these numbers, VA clinics, hospitals and benefits staff have been inexcusably slow not only in granting disability benefits due female veterans suffering from sex assault-related issues including PTSD, but in fully adjusting to the rising number of military women. For instance, advocacy groups report that some VA health centers only recently opened women’s restrooms and that women seeking treatment at these centers routinely are asked if they’re waiting for their husbands or simply lost. A full third of VA medical centers lack an on-staff gynecologist and 31 percent lack staff needed to provide adequate treatment for sexual assault, according to reports by Disabled American Veterans and the Institute of Medicine.
Increased activism by and on behalf of the nations’ female military veterans over the past few years has affected some change. The Pentagon launched a high-profile campaign to prevent sexual attacks on servicewomen and to punish offenders. Earlier this month, the VA announced it would expand mental health services to reservists and National Guard members who were sexually assaulted while on inactive duty. And earlier this year, the government nixed a requirement that military members produce proof that they were assaulted or harassed before receiving health care.
VA Secretary Robert McDonald says the department is additional steps to address the issue. These include asking each veteran during intake whether they suffered a sex assault or trauma; hiring more doctors, therapist and social workers who have experience in military sex assault issues; and increasing staff responsible for helping female veterans to better navigate the disability claims process.
“VA simply must be an organization that provides comprehensive care for all veterans dealing with the effects of military sexual trauma,” McDonald told reporters recently. “Our range of services for [military sexual trauma]-related experiences are constantly being reexamined to best meet the needs of our veterans.”
VA officials say they’re re-reviewing scores of cases of alleged military sex assault and are encouraging female veterans who previously had been denied benefits for treatment of related PTSD to reapply.
Despite the progress and improvement, the claim filing process for treatment of military sex assault-related PTSD and other lasting injuries remains a difficult, often confusing and potentially long one. To help assure that you get fair and timely compensation, call 800-251-1111 and speak with an experienced VA disability benefits attorney with Jacksonville’s Harrell and Harrell today.