Government Studies Scooter Safety

 

CDC Looking at Dockless Scooters

 

Studies Scooter SafetySurprising even industry analysts, dockless scooters have become the rage in municipalities across the country, with industry leaders Bird and Lime making their motorized crafts available in more than a hundred cities in just over a year. With the proliferation of scooters, though, officials have seen a dramatic rise in scooter accidents, some involving serious injury and even death. The federal government has now decided to take a closer look at safety issues tied to the devices.

The Centers for Diseases Control and Prevention (CDC), headquarted in Atlanta, announced earlier this week that it will be investigating health and safety risks associated with the motorized bikes. The study will look at usage and crash statistics in Austin, Texas. Officials plan to examine emergency room data and EMS calls from a 90 day period, running from September through November of 2018. They’ll be investigating the causes of scooter accidents and seeking to identify preventive safety measures.

Concerns have mounted nationwide as the number of scooter-related injuries has spiked. A hospital in Salt Lake City reported a 161% increase in scooter-related trauma in just a year. Riders have died in motor vehicle accidents across the country, including Washington, DC and Dallas.

Concerns about the safety of scooters has led many cities to curtail usage, including San Francisco, where officials issued a temporary ban, then issued operating licenses to only two companies. Santa Monica officials have also struggled to accommodate the low-speed vehicles, identifying specific sections along city streets designated for scooter parking.

Contact Our Offices

At Weber & Nierenberg, we offer more than three decades of collective legal experience to people who suffered any type of personal injury in California, including individuals hurt in scooter accidents. We will take the time to learn exactly what happened to you, as well as what you need to fully compensate you for your losses. For a free initial consultation, Contact our office online or call 1-866-288-6010 to schedule an appointment with an experienced California motorcycle/scooter accident lawyer.

Scooter Companies Face Class Action Lawsuit

 

Litigation Alleges Manufacturers Engaged in “Gross Negligence”

 

Scooter-CompaniesEven though they seem to be increasingly popular with commuters and the public, electronic scooters continue to be the source of legal issues for their manufacturers. In fact, a lawsuit filed in state court in Los Angeles County earlier this fall named a number of e-scooter companies as defendants and the allegations included “aiding and abetting assault” and engaging in “gross negligence.”

The California litigation, which names Bird, Lime and other e-scooter enterprises, was filed as a class action on behalf of eight individuals who say they suffered injuries because of the companies’ business practices. The injured parties (plaintiffs) contend that scooter companies have increased the risk of injury by placing scooters on public streets without any safety warnings or ways to ensure that individuals who rent or drive them are qualified to do so. They allege in their lawsuit that this constitutes a “public nuisance.”

The complaint further states that the e-scooter companies either knew or should have known that their customers were injuring others, specifically pedestrians, but took no action whatsoever to address the problem. By failing to act, they allege, the companies “assisted and encouraged” customers to engage in behavior that constituted assault.

The plaintiffs also contend that there are product liability concerns with many of the scooters— they have either defective electronics or defective mechanical parts (or both). Attorneys for the plaintiffs say there are “scores” of riders and pedestrians who have already been injured, and they have asked the court to certify a class action.

Contact Weber & Nierenberg to Schedule a Meeting

At the law offices of Weber & Nierenberg, we bring more than 30 years of combined legal experience to personal injury victims across California, including people who have been hurt in scooter accidents. We will listen carefully to learn the unique details of your case so that we can customize our legal representation to obtain the outcome you need. Contact our office online or call 1-866-288-6010 to set up a free initial consultation with an experienced California motorcycle and scooter accident attorney.

Motorcycle Accident Injuries—Does There Have to Be a Collision?

In situations involving a “near collision,” where the wrongful act of another motorist causes you to take evasive action, there’s a big difference between the potential consequences when you’re on a motorcycle or an automobile. With an automobile, it’s much easier to maintain control of the vehicle and you’ll be protected by a few thousand pounds of steel. On a motorcycle, though, your only option may be to lay down the bike, putting you in direct contact with the roadway.

If you suffer injuries in a motorcycle accident where there was never any contact with another driver, can you still sue that person for injuries suffered? The answer is a clear “yes.”

Legal Responsibility for “No Contact” Motorcycle Accidents

There is no requirement that there be any actual contact between the at-fault party and a person injured in a motorcycle accident. Instead, a personal injury claim for losses sustained in a motorcycle accident will almost always be based on a legal theory of negligence. To successfully recover under a theory of negligence, you need to prove three things to a judge and/or jury:

  • That the at-fault person breached his or her duty of care—Under the law as it has evolved, all persons must exercise “reasonable” care in all their daily endeavors, whether it’s driving a motor vehicle, maintaining real property, or designing or manufacturing a product. In a lawsuit, a jury will review the facts as supported by the evidence and make a determination of whether or not the defendant exercised an appropriate amount of care. If not, the jury will move on to the second element of negligence.
  • The failure to exercise reasonable care “caused” an accident—Causation has two parts—actual cause and proximate cause. Actual cause requires a showing that the accident would not have occurred “but for” the breach of the duty of care. Proximate cause requires that the injured party show that the injuries sustained were reasonably foreseeable as a consequence of the breach of the duty of care.
  • There were actual losses—The plaintiff (the injured party) must also show that he or she suffered some actual loss, whether it’s property damage or personal injury. Personal injury can include lost wages and income, medical bills, loss of companionship or consortium, loss of enjoyment of life, and pain and suffering.

Contact Weber & Nierenberg

At Weber & Nierenberg, our attorneys bring over 30 years of experience to injured people in California, including men and women who have been hurt in motorcycle accidents. For a private consultation, contact Weber & Nierenberg by e-mail or call us at 1-866-288-6010. There is no charge for your first meeting.

Bicyclist Injured in Collision with Bus at Prospect Road & S. DeAnza Blvd, San Jose, on 5/24/13

On Friday, May 24, 2013 around 2:15 p.m., an elderly man riding a bicycle was struck by a school bus as he crossed the intersection of Prospect Road and South DeAnza Blvd. In San Jose.

The bicyclist was taken to the hospital by ambulance for treatment of his injuries. It is unknown if there were any passengers on the school bus at the time of the collision.

The personal injury attorneys at the Weber & Nierenberg law firm are well-experienced in bicycle accidents and wrongful death claims, as well as automobile, motorcycle, pedestrian, truck and bus accident cases, and wrongful death cases, and will work hard and competently to obtain complete compensation for your injuries and losses.

If you or someone you know needs to know their rights regarding an auto accident or wrongful death claim, or motorcycle, bus, bicycle, pedestrian accident or other type of personal injury, call the attorneys at the Weber and Nierenberg law firm. Personal injury attorneys at Weber & Nierenberg will work hard to make sure your rights are vindicated. For a free consultation or to make an appointment, call 1-866-288-6010.

Burn Injuries in the Bay Area and Throughout Northern California

Information Regarding Your Rights and Options Following Injuries and Accidents

Burn Injuries

When you are injured by severe burns, you need special legal assistance. Legal assistance from an attorney who understands the psychological trauma of pain, scarring and disfiguration. Legal assistance from an attorney who can help you obtain the medical care you need. And Legal assistance from a lawyer who is experienced in investigating burn-related accidents and who has a track record of obtaining high-value compensation following serious accidents.

Attorneys Steven J. Weber and Joseph S. Nierenberg of the Bay Area law firm of Weber & Nierenberg have decades of experience handling burn injury and severe-injury cases, including injuries resulting from:

Have burns resulted in facial or bodily disfigurement? The need for skin grafting? The need for long-term and/or expensive treatment from a specialist or burn unit? Inhalation injuries?

We can help following first-, second- and third-degree burns. Legal challenges will likely involving determining the cause of the accident and injuries, identifying responsible insurers, determining the value of your claim and pursuing the full compensation you are owed.

Insurers will likely attempt to minimize the value of your claim, regardless of the facts and regardless of the extent of your injuries. They may even try to settle quickly with you for a minimal sum to avoid future exposure to financial responsibilities. Don’t settle less than the full compensation you need and are owed. Instead, contact Weber & Nierenberg to discuss your case at no charge. Call 1-866-288-6010.

Making Smart Decisions About Emergency Medical Treatment

Emergency Medical Treatment

If you have been involved in an auto accident recently, you have a lot to think about. Getting your car repaired, arranging for a loaner vehicle, dealing with your insurer, or responding to a traffic citation can all seem like top priorities in the immediate aftermath of a car crash.

In the most serious motor vehicle accidents, of course, emergency medical treatment will be the first thing to look after when a driver, passenger, bicyclist or pedestrian was badly hurt. In low-impact or single-vehicle accidents, however, when there appears to be no serious injury, people often forget that soft-tissue trauma in the knee, shoulder, wrist or neck can cause serious problems for a long time to come.

If you need advice about the best ways to seek and obtain effective medical treatment after a car accident of any severity, contact the California personal injury attorneys at Weber & Nierenberg for a free consultation about your options. With offices in San Francisco, Oakland, San Jose and San Rafael, our law firm is convenient to clients throughout the Bay Area. Our lawyers have recovered millions for people with injuries of all kinds under a wide variety of accident scenarios.

Emergency Treatment Is the Starting Point for Your Medical Evidence

One problem that car accident victims have in common is the need to prove their injuries in detail, with proper medical evidence, and with a solid projection of future treatment needs. This is true in multimillion-dollar disability cases, strain or sprain cases, and everything in between. Unfortunately, people whose injuries do not seem to be especially serious often decline emergency medical treatment, only to discover later that they are experiencing problems that were probably caused by the accident.

If you wait too long to get medical attention for car accident injuries, you run the risk that you won’t be able to prove a connection between the collision and your health problems. If you were hurt in any way at all, you should get medical attention as soon as possible. Don’t be surprised if you come out of the emergency room with a clean bill of health, only to discover symptoms in the following days or weeks. Certain injuries to the head, neck, back or joints can get worse instead of better over time. Not all injuries are identified or diagnosed in emergency treatment, either.

Protect Your Interest in Full Compensation for Car Accident Injuries

By getting medical attention shortly after an accident, you’re creating a clinical starting point for the evaluation, treatment and eventual compensation for any injuries that might have been caused or aggravated by the crash. You should also keep in mind that so-called minor injuries do not always respond to conservative treatment, even if for most people similar symptoms clear up soon.

At Weber & Nierenberg, we have seen many cases where soft-tissue injuries to the knee, shoulder, neck or back turned out to generate six-figure accident claims due to missed work, repeated surgeries, or chronic pain and suffering that proved resistant to medication and chiropractic treatment.

If you refuse medical treatment right after an accident, you are unnecessarily complicating the process of proving a causal relationship between the injuries that might later develop and the car crash. If an insurance company sees the opportunity to deny or limit coverage for an accident claim, it will certainly pursue it. Early medical attention is one of your most effective tools for protecting your interest in full compensation.

Call 866-288-6010 to Discuss Your Injuries With an Attorney

Learn more about the ways experienced Bay Area personal injury lawyers can help you get the most out of your available medical coverage while protecting your interest in full compensation for apparently minor injuries. Contact us at any of our four locations for a free consultation, or visit our website at www.weberandnierenberg.com.

BART Pays $1.3 Million to Settle Fruitvale Station Shooting Claim

The mother of Oscar Grant III, the young man fatally shot in Oakland by a BART police officer on New Year’s Day 2009, has settled her wrongful death lawsuit against BART for $1.3 million, as reported by the San Francisco Examiner.

The settlement resolves the second of two civil lawsuits filed in connection with the shooting death. BART previously paid $1.5 million to settle a wrongful death action brought on behalf of the victim’s daughter, who was five years old at the time of the shooting.

Johannes Mehserle, the BART police officer who shot Grant while the victim lay face down on the Fruitvale Station platform, was released after serving 11 months of a two-year involuntary manslaughter sentence. He maintained that he thought he was firing a Taser instead of a gun.

Liability and Damages Claims against California Transit Agencies

Proof of personal injury or wrongful death claims against a public transportation agency require an aggressive approach to the investigation of the facts and careful attention to detail in the development of the damages side of the case. The advice and advocacy of experienced attorneys can help protect the value of the plaintiff’s claims whether based on negligence, intentional torts or a combination of liability theories.

With four offices around the Bay Area, the lawyers of Weber & Nierenberg are familiar with the demands of civil litigation against the various local and regional transit authorities operating throughout the region. In one case against the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency (MUNI), our law firm recovered $855,000 for a bus passenger who was forcibly removed from the bus by a driver with a history of violent confrontations with passengers.

Call 866-288-6010 for a Free Consultation in the Bay Area

To find out more about the ways our attorneys can protect your rights in cases involving injuries resulting from negligent or intentional misconduct on the part of public transportation agencies and their employees, contact Weber & Nierenberg in San Francisco, Oakland, San Jose or San Rafael. To learn more about the range of our law firm’s practice, see our website.

PG & E Record Flaws Exposed in San Bruno Explosion Investigation

Months after an explosion in a Pacific Gas & Electric pipeline killed eight people in San Bruno, maintenance documents released by the utility to the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) show conflicting information about repair work performed along the line for decades, according to a report in the San Francisco Examiner.

The discrepancies concern the details of a 1998 leak a few miles away on the same high – pressure gas line. PG & E workers who repaired that leak reported problems and remedial steps different from those reported by the utility. In the wake of last year’s San Bruno explosion, the California Public Utilities Commission ordered the turnover of thousands of PG & E documents concerning safety, maintenance and repair records.

Comparing the documents to the utility’s previous statements, it appears that PG & E itself is yet to get a handle on the causes of leaks along its pipeline. For example, PG & E has previously stated that the pipeline was seamless, but the records show numerous welds and other repairs along lengthwise seams.

Complex Accident Investigation Depends on Careful Records Analysis

The San Bruno pipeline explosion case illustrates the complexity of investigating accidents involving public utilities. In civil actions for damages by the individuals and families most directly affected, it will be necessary to prove negligence on the part of the utility or its contractors in the design, installation or maintenance of the transmission line.

Because the most reliable and specific evidence of the causes of an accident will generally come from the records maintained by the utility itself, the failure to maintain proper maintenance and repair records can complicate the investigative efforts of plaintiffs’ lawyers as well as those of regulators. In some cases, however, proof of inadequate record – keeping practices by itself can help establish the plaintiff’s case for negligence.

Call Weber & Nierenberg for a Free Consultation: 866-288-6010

At the Bay Area law firm of Weber & Nierenberg, our experience with the investigation and proof of complex personal injury claims against corporate and public agency defendants can make the decisive difference in the outcome of a catastrophic personal injury or wrongful death case.

Contact us for a free consultation in San Francisco, Oakland, San Jose or San Rafael if you need advice about your legal options in the aftermath of a public utility accident, a bus or train crash, or an accident on government property. You can also visit our website.

Spinal Disc Injuries – Causes and Treatment

San Francisco Bay Area Back Injury Attorney

Back pain is a common problem, afflicting millions of Americans. Back pain is typically caused by personal injury, age, conditions such as osteoarthritis or Paget’s disease, and weight. As a result, the cause of back pain generally involves injuries to ligaments and muscles, fractures, and torn or ruptured discs. In cases involving pulls or strains, back pain usually goes away by itself in about four weeks. In cases involving herniated discs or fractures link to herniated discs or fractures, matters can be complicated by nerve pressure and inflammation. If flare ups continue with some regularity, eventually chronic pain and decreased mobility may require back surgery.

Herniated Discs and Back Pain

A disc sits above the spinal canal containing nerves that run from the brain to the rest of the body. A disc contains gelatinous matter that helps confer flexibility on the spine. In a back injury where excessive weight or pressure is transferred to the spine, the outer membrane of a disc may tear, allowing its gelatinous core to create a bulge that compresses nerve roots along the spinal canal. This can result in pinched nerves, leading to loss of sensation or tingling in the extremities. If the disc does not heal or is prone to herniation, the result may be chronic pain that is difficult to treat. In these kinds of cases, spinal fusion surgery may be necessary.

Spinal Fusion Surgery and Herniated Discs

When rest or physical therapy is not enough to heal a herniated disc, spinal fusion surgery may be required. Spinal fusion surgery involves taking a bone graft and using it to fuse two bones together to create a stable encasement for a bulging disc. This involves fusing the vertebra above and below the herniated disc to prevent movement between them. Screws and plates are then affixed to make sure the vertebrae are secure until the bulging disc heals. While expensive, spinal fusion surgery may be the only option people have when a herniated disc will not heal properly.

Contact Bay Area San Francisco Back Injury Attorneys

Any award or settlement in a personal injury case involving back injuries should take into consideration the considerable costs of spinal fusion surgery. If a car, truck, motorcycle, or construction accident has left you with a herniated disc, it’s important to consult an experienced back doctor to determine whether you need spinal fusion or surgery or may need it in the future.

For more information regarding back pain and personal injuries, contact San Francisco personal injury attorneys Weber & Nierenberg today.

When Your Insurance Company Gives You the Runaround

San Francisco Bay Area Bad-Faith Insurance Attorneys

When you buy an insurance policy from an insurer, your insurer is responsible for providing coverage under the terms of the policy, acting in good faith toward you and defending you if you are sued, and the insurer must consider your interests to be equal to those of the insurer itself. When an insurer fails to pay a claim for coverage you have or takes an inordinate amount of time to pay a claim, they can be held financially liable for bad faith practices. When this happens, the financial consequences for you, the policyholder, can be significant, as unpaid medical bills and lost wages continue to create financial difficulty for you and your family.

If your insurer has rejected a personal injury claim or takes an unusually long time to pay a claim, it’s important to read the Declarations section of your policy and contact a personal injury lawyer to discuss the options available to you.

Claim Denials — When Insurers Reject a Claim

In general, an insurer may deny a claim for one or more of the following reasons:
• A “loss event” is not covered under the terms of a policy
• A claims agent incorrectly decided to deny benefits that should have been provided under the terms of your policy
• Your claim contained misleading or inaccurate information, leading a claims agent to mistakenly decide you are not covered for the losses incurred
• A claims agent failed to properly review the evidence associated with your claim, mistakenly issuing a denial as a result

Depending on the specifics of your case, a simple review of your policy may be enough to correct any mistakes on the part of your insurer in your initial filing or claims presentation. If your insurer is unwilling to revisit the issue, it may be necessary to hire a personal injury attorney who can send a demand letter and prepare for litigation.

Bad-Faith Insurance Practices — When a Claim Takes Too Long

If you have a valid claim and have submitted a properly prepared injury claim, your insurer should issue payment in a timely fashion. When an insurer fails to return calls, insists everything is in order but won’t release a check or continues to ask you to resubmit documentation, they may be stalling while their legal department decides what to do. If you hire an attorney to represent you as soon as you encounter unreasonable delays, you can often preempt further problems and resolve the issue.

In another form of bad-faith insurance practice, an insurer may offer to pay your claim but for less than what the policy indicates. An insurer may think you’ll simply take what you can get rather than risk going to court and waiting months for a claims payout. Should this happen, consult a personal injury attorney as soon as possible. Insurance companies that engage in bad-faith practices can be held financially liable for any harm suffered as a result.

Contact San Francisco Bad-Faith Insurance Attorneys at Weber & Nierenberg

Policyholders have a right to expect prompt payment on losses they’re insured for. If you’ve encountered difficulties with your insurer, contact San Francisco Bay Area personal injury attorneys today to learn how we can help you.

 
 
Locations & Contact Information
  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

Locations

1 Sansome Street, Suite 3500 San Francisco, CA 94104
map
P. 415-788-3900

1999 Harrison Street, Suite 600 Oakland, CA 94612
map
P. 510-663-6000

Read Our Blogs

Government Studies Scooter Safety

  CDC Looking at Dockless Scooters   Surprising even industry analysts, dockless scooters have become the rage in municipalitie... [Read More...]