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New York Nursing Home Cited for Multiple Counts of Neglect

older patient with nurseWhen family sends an elderly member to a nursing home for care, they expect their loved one to be treated with respect and the highest level of care available. Unfortunately, this is not the reality for many admitted to nursing homes across the country. One facility in Western New York highlights the need for better oversight and legal recourse when residents are not treated appropriately.

WKBW reports that the Niagara Rehabilitation and Nursing in Niagara Falls featured some of the poorest conditions witnessed at nursing homes in the Western New York area. After moving her relatives from some of the most troubling facilities in the state, including Emerald South and Humboldt House, Jackie Murray-White placed her mother in Niagara Rehabilitation and Nursing in Niagara Falls.

Sadly, the nursing home chosen was considered a “modern day poor house and nursing home of last resort,” according to a report by the local Buffalo station WKBW. In fact, complaints by a resident resulted in a two-month long investigation by WKBW into the facility and the results were troubling, to say the least. In taking care of her own loved one, Murray-White noted some serious concerns for the residents at the facility.

Limited bathroom assistance

Murray-White notes soon after her mother was admitted to the facility that assistance to bathroom appeared to be painfully limited, In fact, the woman told WKBW that she stopped bringing her new baby to the center because of the overpowering stench of urine in the facility. She told WKBW that she and her sister had to make special arrangements to ensure their mother got to the bathroom.

“My sister and I would have to leave our homes because no one would come to take her to the bathroom,” Miller-White told WKBW. “There was a time where [our mother] sat for two or three hours in her own pee because no one would clean her up – they would yell at her for calling.”

Nursing home violations

Tragically, Miller-White’s account is not the only one to reveal the alleged negligence at Niagara Rehabilitation and Nursing. This facility has earned one of the worst ratings in Western New York in recent years, despite the change of ownership in 2012. In fact, the federal government ranks this nursing home with one out of five stars, with 23 violations that lead the state in averages for nursing homes.

Violations at this nursing home include “severe, systemic deficiencies,” which fail to provide the necessary care and services to its residents. Some of the violations include bed sores for some patients, which can lead to serious skin infections. Neglect to provide residents with antibiotics is another charge, which could lead to worsening of a resident’s condition.

One incident of nursing home neglect led to the death of a resident there, according to state documents. A man that was sent to the facility on January 20 began complaining of abdominal pain around 2:00 a.m. For two-and-one-half hours, no one on the staff monitored the patient’s vital signs or called for a physician to assess the man’s condition. The patient died a few hours later, resulting in a $10,000 fine for the facility.

Filing a nursing home abuse lawsuit

If you feel that you have a case against a particular nursing home, it is essential that you document all proceedings to show negligence on the part of the facility. The more documentation you have, the more weight you carry when you seek legal action against the nursing home facility. If the nursing home violates the state or federal laws involving the maintenance of nursing home, they may be liable for reimbursing their residents the monetary amount that they have lost in trusting those facilities to provide them with the proper care.

Edelman, Krasin & Jaye has experience working with cases of nursing home neglect and can help you protect your loved one from actions that might be detrimental to their health or mental well-being. If you would like a free case evaluation or answers to your legal questions, contact our NY personal injury lawyers at 1-800-469-7429.

Long Island Neurosurgeon Sued for Malpractice

Surgeon A prominent Long Island neurosurgeon, Dr. Paolo Bolognese, is facing three separate medical malpractice lawsuits alleging botched spinal surgeries. According to a report in NY Daily News, all three plaintiffs allege that Bolognese either performed unnecessary operations or botched their treatment so badly that their health is now worse than before they first sought medical help.

Fifty-five year-old Lori White, once an avid equestrian, is one of the plaintiffs. Bolognese performed her spinal surgery nearly two years ago, and she is still living in chronic pain. White, like the other claimants, sought treatment for Chiari malformation – a rare congenital defect in which brain tissue grows into the spine. She sought treatment at the North Shore University Hospital’s Chiari Institute, which was co-founded by Bolognese. White’s lawsuit contends gross surgical negligence that has left her with practically zero mobility in her neck and head due to misplaced hardware.

“I can barely function since my surgery and I don’t know that I will ever fully recover,” White told NY Daily News, adding, “Dr. Bolognese promised to make me better. He promised so many things, and nothing came to fruition. I now have no quality of life.”

Surgery leaves woman bedridden

The two other claimants who are suing Bolognese are 29-year-old Crystal Hensley Hall, and Jennifer Lake, a young student from New Mexico. Both had spinal operations based on advice from Bolognese, and both were left with catastrophic injuries, says their attorney.

According to their legal counsel, the surgeries have negatively impacted the lives of both. Lake has trouble swallowing and experiences tachycardia, impaired bladder function and leg pain, and Hall is practically bedridden most of the time.

Bolognese sued at least 20 times

Dr. Bolognese has not responded to recent allegations raised by the three women, and while he is considered one of the world’s top experts on Chiari malformations, he is no stranger to malpractice litigation. The Daily News reports that he has been sued at least 20 times for alleged misconduct, and was even was suspended in 2010 by the hospital for purportedly showing up late for a surgery while the patient was anesthetized.

Bolognese was investigated for his medical conduct in 2010, but New York’s Office of Professional Medical Conduct did not hand down any sanctions or disciplinary actions.

Surgical errors & legal recourse

Edelman, Krasin & Jaye has procured substantial verdicts and settlements for victims of malpractice and surgical negligence. When life-altering injuries result from a physician’s errors, incompetence or lack of training, victims are entitled to their day in court.

A successful medical malpractice lawsuit can recoup compensation for:

  • Hospital and medical expenses
  • Loss of income
  • Loss of future earnings
  • Permanent disfigurement
  • Permanent disability
  • Loss of spousal consortium
  • Emotional distress

When a routine surgery or procedure harms more than it helps, it pays to enlist the services of an experienced attorney who can investigate the facts, review medical records and determine if standards of care were upheld.

If you or a loved one has been injured in a hospital setting, we encourage you to reach out for a free case review with a Long Island personal injury lawyer at Edelman, Krasin and Jaye. You can reach our offices toll-free at the number above.

Viral Video Shows E-Cig Battery Explosion

close up portrait of a man smoking an e-cigarette

Horrifying footage that has now gone viral shows a French nightclub owner being engulfed by flames after his electronic cigarette battery exploded in his pocket. The disturbing incident, which unfortunately is not that uncommon, highlights the dangers posed by defective lithium batteries installed in many of today’s vape pens. In the video, published early this month, Toulouse club manager Amine Britel is seen desperately trying to shed his jacket after his e-cigarette device catches on fire. Two of the nightclub’s workers rush to his aid, and are able to put out the flames.

“I heard what sounded like a firecracker but ten times louder,” Britel told French reporters after the incident. “After the shock of the explosion, I realized I had caught on fire.” While the injury could have been much worse, Britel still suffered second-degree burns on his hand, midsection and hip.

The Toulouse incident marks the latest in a string of vape pen explosions in the last few years. According to FEMA statistics, 25 separate incidents of explosion and fire involving e-cig batteries were reported in the U.S. between 2009 and 2014. At least a dozen more e-cig injuries have been reported in the past 16 months.

E-cig fire and explosion: key takeaways

Millions of people across the globe have taken up “vaping” as a safer and healthier alternative to tobacco cigarettes. In the U.S., an estimated 2.5 million people use e-cigs, which is now a billion dollar industry. However, malfunctioning batteries have been linked to an alarming number of injury reports, and at least one death. According to FEMA data, at least 80 percent of e-cigarette explosions happen while the units are charging. Officials believe that most fires occur when the devices are connected to charging cables that were not sold with the battery.

At present, federal officials have yet to create a database that tracks all injuries and fires associated with electronic cigarettes, leaving hospital and media reports our most accurate source. A recent report from health care providers at the University of Washington Medical Center show an upward trend in serious injuries from e-cig battery explosions. The hospital treated 15 different patients from October 2015 to June 2016. Many of the victims suffered second and third-degree burns requiring skin graft surgery. Others suffered significant blast injuries, soft tissue loss, dental damage and chemical burns from battery fluid.

Lawsuits being filed against e-cig manufacturers

It comes as no surprise that multiple legal complaints have been filed against the manufacturers of electronic cigarettes, alleging the lithium ion battery units suffer design and manufacturing defects. Victims have brought e-cigarette explosion lawsuits in Florida, California, New York and several other states, in the hopes of recovering fair compensation for their injuries and losses.

Here at Edelman, Krasin & Jaye, it is our conviction that manufacturers should be held accountable for placing profits over consumer safety. Our personal injury lawyers understand the physical, emotional and financial burdens placed on those who suffer serious harm. If you or a loved one suffered burns or injury from an exploding e-cigarette, you may have a claim for damages.  Call us today to arrange a free consultation.

NHTSA: Traffic Fatalities Significantly Increased During 2016

police officer next to carThere has been a sharp rise in the number of people dying from car crashes, bicycle accidents, and pedestrian accidents during the first half of 2016, according to the October issue of Traffic Safety Facts –a publication of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). Compared to the same time period in 2015, there was a 10 percent increase in traffic deaths in the first half of this year. NHTSA places the estimate at almost 18,000 traffic deaths from January to June. During that same time period in 2015, there were almost 16,000 fatalities on the nation’s roadways.

Here at the law firm of Edelman, Krasin & Jaye, we’re deeply troubled by this new data. Even one wrongful death is one too many. That’s why our personal injury lawyers have made it their life’s work to provide effective legal advocacy for injured survivors and bereaved family members.

The crash data

It’s important to note that so far, the crash data have not been finalized. The NHTSA expects that the final data for 2015 and the annual file for 2016 won’t be available for review until the fall of 2017. It is entirely possible that the final statistics will be recalculated; however, it’s still likely that the first half of 2016 will represent a troubling upward climb in traffic fatalities. The NHTSA noted that so far, 2016 hasn’t necessarily seen a drastic increase in the number of car accident fatalities. Rather, the increase in deaths is primarily attributed to the rise in the number of deaths from motorcycle, pedestrian, and cyclist accidents.

In 2015, there were over 5,300 pedestrian accident deaths, which represented a 9.5 percent increase. Also in 2015, there were 818 bicyclist deaths, which represented a 12.2 percent increase. Both of those fatality totals were the highest they had been for those respective groups for the past two decades.

Possible reasons for the rising trend

Of course, traffic accidents are usually preventable simply by improving driver behaviors (including curbing drunk and distracted driving) and by providing clear traffic signs and markers. However, there may be a few driving forces behind these troubling statistics.

From 2005 to 2013, there was a significant increase in the number of people who walked and cycled to work. In fact, one million more people chose non-motorized transportation in 2013 than in 2005. Yet, preliminary data show that Americans have also driven 50.5 billion miles more on the roadways during the first half of 2016 compared to the same time period in 2015. The increased demand for transportation is almost certainly playing a role in the increase in traffic fatalities.

Legal representation for New Yorkers

Edelman, Krasin & Jaye is a Long-Island based personal injury firm that offers complimentary consultations for individuals who have been harmed in vehicle accidents. If you’ve been affected by negligent or reckless driving, call us today at 800.469.7429.

We accept cases on a contingency basis, which means we don’t collect legal fees unless we recover compensation on your behalf.

E-Cigarette Explosions & Burns an Increasing Concern, Reports Medical Journal

close up portrait of a man smoking an e-cigarette

Increasing numbers of Americans are giving up tobacco cigarettes in favor of vaporizers, e-cigarettes, e-pipes and other Electronic Nicotine Delivery Systems (ENDS). In 2015, more than 3 million middle and high school students admitted to using vape pens or e-cigarettes, which were linked to dozens of fires that same year. Spontaneous e-cigarette explosions can – and do — happen while the devices are being used or carried, often causing serious facial burns, damage to teeth, facial and neck fractures, lost digits, and third-degree bodily burns.

An editorial report published last month in the BMJ medical journal spotlights this emerging safety concern. The authors say that burns and other serious injuries from overheated e-cigarettes and vaporizers need a clinical, public health and regulatory response. They also call for more stringent federal regulation to ensure that ENDS are manufactured, distributed and marketed “according to standards that reduce harm and promote health.”

193 reports involving E-cig injuries

The editorial underscores an unreliable and inconsistent tracking system for reporting e-cigarette explosions, burns and injuries. The FDA encourages consumers, manufacturers and retailers to report any adverse events regarding ENDS to its “Safety Reporting Portal for Tobacco Products.”

Potential safety concerns or adverse events could include:

  • Fire, burns or other personal injuries
  • Products that are damaged or defective
  • Devices that appear contaminated
  • Poisonings
  • Allergic reactions
  • And products that taste or smell wrong

It has become evident, however, that the lion’s share of vape injuries is gleaned from media reports rather than a federal database. According to the American Burn Association, several hundred e-cigarette-related burns were reported in 2015—a stark contrast to the low figures provided by the U.S. National Fire Protection Association.

One independent website has identified at least 193 reports of e-cigarette explosions caused by incompatible charging ports or damaged or defective lithium-ion batteries. These incidents were mined from global media coverage, though they note that e-cig explosions are seriously under-reported.

Call for increased regulatory oversight

On August 8, 2016, the FDA finalized plans to regulate all tobacco products in the U.S., including e-cigarettes and other ENDS. With better manufacturing guidelines and safety measures in place, along with improved education for the public about e-cigarette risks, health regulators hope to improve consumer safety and lower risk of injury.

At this time, several personal injury lawsuits have already been filed against the manufacturers and distributers of electronic cigarettes, claiming negligence in the marketing and sale of the devices. Plaintiffs are suing for medical bills, pain and suffering, lost wages and permanent disfigurement after being severely burned by malfunctioning vaporizers.

E-cigarette injury attorney

If you or a loved have been harmed while using, charging or carrying an e-cigarette, contact Edelman, Krasin & Jaye for a free case evaluation right away. Our veteran product liability attorneys vow to protect your rights, and fight for maximum compensation. Call 800.469.7429 to set up a confidential consultation today.

Trampoline Park Accidents on the Rise

emergency room signAs more trampoline parks continue to pop up across the country, reports of serious injuries at these facilities have also increased. A new study published in the journal Pediatrics found an alarming rise in trampoline park injuries between 2011 and 2014 as the indoor trampoline craze continues to explode.

Unfortunately, some people that head to these parks for an afternoon of fun come out with significant injuries that can affect their quality of life permanently.

More parks, more ER visits

The new study found an exponential rise in emergency room visits as a result of trampoline park injuries. In 2010, 581 patients sought treatment in emergency rooms due to trampoline-related injuries. By 2014, that number had climbed to nearly 7,000. Patients were likely to be children or teenagers, presenting with injuries like sprains and fractures. However, there was also a concerning number of spinal cord injuries and skull fractures in those emergency room visits as well.

The increase in injuries had a direct correlation to the growth in the trampoline park industry during that same time frame. There were just 35 trampoline parks nationwide in 2011, according to the International Association of Trampoline Parks. By 2014, more than 280 parks had appeared, with around five to six new parks opening up every month. The IATP also estimates that as many as 50 million people visit these trampoline parks every year.

Reasons for injuries

Some of the common reasons why trampoline park injuries occur:

  • Jumpers landing wrong
  • Colliding with other jumpers
  • Getting injured while performing flips
  • Landing on trampoline springs or frames
  • Falling off the trampolines

In addition, injuries caused by trampoline sports at the parks, such as trampoline dodgeball or volleyball were also reported.

The researchers in this study compiled data from the National Electronic Injury Surveillance System between 2010 and 2014. Findings were based on samples from 100 emergency rooms across the nation. The lead researcher in the study, Dr. Kathryn Kasmire, told the Chicago Tribune that parents need to be aware of the risks at these parks, as well as the fact that safety rules can vary significantly from facility to facility.

Liability in trampoline park accidents

Most trampoline parks have participants sign a waiver before they are allowed onto the trampolines. Unfortunately, this leaves some injured victims with the mistaken assumption they cannot seek legal action against the park for their injuries. However, that is not always the case.

Waivers do not protect a trampoline park against negligence in the upkeep of the trampolines or in monitoring jumpers for safe behavior. Jumpers have a right to assume that the facility will take all necessary steps to ensure the safety of participants with full-time monitoring of the trampolines and the institution and enforcement of appropriate safety rules. If the facility does not do their part to keep guests and premises safe, legal action may indeed be an option.

If you are injured at a trampoline park, it is important to seek competent legal representation as soon as possible. An investigation will be necessary to evaluate the safety of the park, interview possible witnesses and assess the language of the waiver to determine how clear and broad it is. An experienced premises liability attorney will know precisely how to ensure your rights are protected, and just compensation is secured.

If you or someone you love is injured at a trampoline park, contact the Long Island law firm of Edelman, Krasin & Jaye as soon as possible to receive a free case evaluation. Our number is 1-800-469-7429 and we will be happy to discuss your legal options with you and answer all of your questions.

2016 Edelman, Krasin & Jaye Scholarship Award Winner

scholarship award winnerEvery year, the law firm of Edelman, Krasin & Jaye awards three scholarships to students who maintain good grades, in spite of being diagnosed with chronic illness. Chelsea Fisk is this year’s $1,000 award recipient. To qualify for the scholarship award, she had to be accepted to or enrolled in a business, law, or medical program at an accredited US college and have a GPA of 3.0 or higher. She also had to submit an essay describing her struggle with a chronic illness.

Edelman Krasin & Jaye would like to congratulate Ms. Fisk, and wish her the very best of luck in her future endeavors.

Chelsea Fisk: 2016 Scholarship award winner

“In the fall of 2013, I was someone that appeared to be, by all accounts, living the life of a highly successful high school student,” Chelsea wrote. “I was elected class president; I had just received the lead role in the school musical; I volunteered regularly in the community with organizations that I loved; I was scoring well in two of the most notoriously difficult advanced placement classes; and to top it all off, I was approaching the ACT feeling confident in myself and my studying.”

When illness struck suddenly and mysteriously, doctors thought it was a flu virus. As she fell sicker and missed days of school racked up, she knew something more was going on. Hospital tests revealed that one of her lungs had collapsed and her lower digestive tract was severely inflamed. Doctors diagnosed her with Ulcerative Colitis after two weeks in the hospital and placed her on strong medications.

The insurmountable pile of schoolwork awaited her. “It felt like the rug had been pulled out from me,” she recalled. She made a few tough choices – like dropping AP Calculus and moving to a less demanding math course. Over the years, the disease symptoms came and went. Even so, she was able to finish 13 AP courses and maintain high grades. She gained acceptance at Michigan State University, where she studies Biochemistry & Molecular Biology, as well as Theatre.

Passion discovered in the most unlikely of places

While hospitalized, Chelsea says she developed a deep interest in the work of doctors. “The hospital turned from a terrifying and painful place to a wealth of excitement, overflowing with learning and discovery. Even my disease that
seemed frightening and complex became a source of knowledge and intrigue,” she said. Chelsea hopes to one day work with sick newborns, children undergoing transplant surgery or young people with blood disorders.

“When faced with the debilitating symptoms of ulcerative colitis, it would have been so easy to just drop out of high school and maybe try for a G.E.D. later on,” remarks senior partner William T. Jaye. “But Chelsea’s love of learning, curiosity, and inner drive for success kicked into high gear. We believe she represents the brightest rising star and we wish her great luck with the rest of her academic years and beyond.”

Navy Considers E-Cigarette Ban Amid Safety Worries

man smoking an e-cigarette

The U.S. Navy is considering a ban on electronic cigarettes, also known as e-cigarettes, from all Navy property.

The proposal comes as there is increasing concerns over the dangers of the electronic devices. The Naval Safety Center has recorded 12 incidents of the batteries inside these devices exploding, leading to fires and injuries to the sailors using them.

Navy records 12 e-cig fire events

According to a report at the Navy Times, the 12 incidents were all recorded between October 2015 and May 2016. Seven of those incidents occurred on Navy ships and some resulted in fires that had to be put out using firefighting equipment. Eight of the explosions occurred to e-cigarettes stored in someone’s pocket and led to first and second-degree burns. Another two occurred while the e-cigarettes were in the sailor’s mouths, which caused injuries to the face and teeth.

The Navy is now trying to determine whether keeping e-cigarettes out of submarines, ships and airplanes would increase safety and reduce the potential for property damage.

Currently, the Naval Sea Systems Command has a partial ban on lithium-ion batteries, the same type of batteries that are used in e-cigarettes. The Safety Center is also recommending and extension of the ban to include e-cigarettes, keeping them away from all naval property. When the batteries inside the e-cigarette tube overheat, they can convert the device into a small and very dangerous bomb.

“It is strongly recommended that action be taken to prohibit these devices from use, transport or storage on Navy facilities, submarines, ships, vessels and aircraft,” a memo from the Safety Center reads. “In conjunction with these efforts, it is recommended that the Navy launch a dedicated safety campaign to inform service members about the potential danger of these products.”

Concerns about e-cigs growing

It is not just the Navy that has become concerned about the risks associated with e-cigarettes. Numerous e-cigarette explosions have been reported across the nation, which have caused serious burns, bone fractures and tissue damage. The U.S. Fire Administration found 25 incidents involving e-cigarettes between 2009 and 2014, which were discovered by media reports. However, the administration believes there may have been more injuries and incidents that were not reported during that time.

The report found that 80 percent of the incidents occurred while the battery was being charged, while eight percent occurred while the device was being used. The incidents results in 10 injuries, two of which were considered serious. Both of those occurred when the devices exploded in the users’ mouths.

Currently, there is no regulation of e-cigarettes, which leaves consumers unsure of whether the devices they use are up to the highest safety standards. The devices are also not required to carry any warnings about the possibility of explosions at this time. However, those who are injured by the devices may have legal recourse against the manufacturers that are failing to provide proper warning about potential risks associated with their products.

If you are injured by an e-cigarette, legal help is available. Contact Edelman, Krasin & Jaye to discuss your legal options. To speak with a New York personal injury lawyer free of charge, please call at 1-800-469-7429.

Long Island Drivers Face Memorial Day Weekend DUI Charges

auto accidents - drunk driverTwo men who fled the scene of car accidents over Memorial Day weekend were among a bevy of drivers arrested on DWI charges, reports the East Hampton Star. According to police, Jeffrey J. Fazzinga was driving his Mitsubishi on Montauk Main Street in the early morning hours when he side swiped a Dodge as it was leaving a parking lot. A breath test at police headquarters showed that Fazzinga had been driving while intoxicated. On Saturday, he was released on $250 bail.

Mark A. Schiavoni was also arrested on drunken driving charges over the weekend. He was swerving erratically on Montauk Highway on Napeague at around 5 am, when he was pulled over by police. Schiavoni, who had recently moved to Amagansett, told authorities he thought he only had a few beers before getting in his 2008 Mitsubishi. But after he failed sobriety tests, he conceded that he must have had more. Shortly after his arraignment, Schiavoni had his license suspended after telling an East Hampton Town Justice he was employed as a driver for Hamptons Free Ride.  A breathalyzer test showed a .18 reading, leading police to raise his misdemeanor charge to an aggravated level.

Other Memorial Day weekend DUI arrests

Memorial Day weekend saw a host of other drunk driving arraignments, as Sag Harbor Village police made multiple arrests on misdemeanor D.W.I. charges. One of the arrests was Ingrida Vanzodas, who was caught speeding on Bay Street, and blowing through a stop sign at the intersection of Route 114 and Main Street. The Churchville, Pa. woman was released after posting $500 bail.

In a separate incident, a Sag Harbor man was caught after trying to flee a sobriety checkpoint on the Flanders Road close to Hampton Bays on Saturday night. Pablo G. Carchipulla, age 31, was charged with D.W.I. after failing roadside sobriety tests, and was also charged with driving without a license – a felony crime. When authorities began to impound the suspect’s vehicle, his passenger, Geovany Plaza, suddenly got behind the wheel and attempted to flee. Police say the 27-year-old drove over medians without headlights onto Sunrise Highway, with law officers in hot pursuit.

Plaza was also found to be intoxicated at the time, and because he had a previous drunk driving conviction, his DWI charge is now at the felony level. Both suspects were arraigned in Southampton Town Justice Court and posted bail.

Fortunately, none of the incidents resulted in serious injury or death, which is often the case when motorists drink and drive.

Legal recourse for drunk driving victims

Statistics show that Suffolk County has one of the highest rates of drunk driving fatalities in New York State, just ahead of Queens County, Nassau County and Kings County. Here at Edelman, Krasin & Jaye, we believe that drunk drivers should be held liable for the pain and suffering their poor decisions and actions cause.

We help victims on Long Island receive legal compensation for their injuries, or the tragic loss of a loved one. Our highly credentialed car accident lawyers work diligently to maximize the payout our clients secure for medical expenses, pain and suffering, lost wages, and other losses.

Schedule a free case review with our attorneys by calling 1-800-469-7429.

Lowe’s Slip and Fall Case Results in $16.4M Jury Award

New York car accident lawyer speaking to juryJurors in a Las Vegas courtroom recently handed down a multi-million dollar verdict in favor of the plaintiff in a slip and fall case. Lowe’s Home Centers, LLC was ordered to pay Kelly Hendrickson $16.4 million for her injuries. The decision came following an 11-day trial that highlighted the severity of Hendrickson’s injuries and the alleged problems associated with the defendants’ safety policies.

It took the jury just six hours of deliberations to agree on the slip and fall verdict. $1.9 million of the award is for the plaintiff’s medical expenses and the rest is for her pain and suffering.

Plaintiff falls on wet concrete, fractures skull

The case stemmed from a 2013 incident at a Lowe’s franchise in Las Vegas. The then-38-year-old mother of three stopped by the garden center, where she spent some time looking at palm trees. She even snapped a few pictures and sent them to her husband. At that point, Hendrickson fell on wet concrete and struck her head. During the trial, Hendrickson testified that the last thing she remembered was “looking up at the palm trees” before she lost consciousness. When she awoke, Hendrickson had excruciating pain in her head. “My head was just killing me. It was the worst pain I’ve ever felt, and I just, was so confused.”

Upon awakening, Hendrickson says that she began yelling for help, but that no one could hear her. “I just remember thinking, ‘Am I going to die?’ I guess I just realized at that moment that I hit my head, on the concrete, and what that could do to a person. It just, it scared me to death.” Hendrickson further testified that she began to panic thinking about what might happen to her family if she died there on the concrete.

When Hendrickson finally did receive medical attention, it was determined that she had fractured her skull. Among her other permanent injuries, she has lost her senses of smell and taste.

History of falls at Lowe’s stores

During the trial, Hendrickson’s counsel argued that Lowe’s was negligent in failing to adequately warn her of the wet concrete. Although a store employee had placed a caution cone in the area, Hendrickson claimed that it was obstructed from view.

The plaintiff’s counsel further argued that Lowe’s allegedly has a poor track record of customer safety, given that there have been at least 23 falls among just 13 area stores over the past five years.

Are you entitled to seek compensation?

You shouldn’t be forced to pay for medical expenses that were the result of someone else’s negligence. You might also be entitled to request damages for your pain and suffering, and perhaps punitive damages, depending on the circumstances.

Your first step is to contact a qualified slip and fall lawyer at Edelman, Krasin & Jaye. We are a personal injury law firm serving Long Island and the surrounding areas. During your case review, we’ll examine the incident and your losses, and explain your options. These might include filing a premises liability lawsuit against the retail establishment where you sustained your injuries. Not all lawsuits are resolved through a trial; some are resolved via settlement talks.

Call Edelman, Krasin & Jaye today at 1.800.469.7429 to schedule your free case review.