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Lake Charles Personal Injury Law Blog

The Jones Act and injuries caused by ships

When Louisiana workers suffer serious personal injuries as a result of an accident caused by a ship or other vessel, their claims are governed by the Jones Act, which is a federal component of maritime and admiralty law, rather than under the state's personal injury laws. Available claims and damages must thus be sought through the nation's maritime law, which has different procedures and laws than other types of personal injury cases.

Under the Jones Act, it does not matter if the injury suffered occurred on the water or if it occurred on land. If a navigable vessel was involved, maritime and admiralty law governs. The claim must first be presented to the company that owns or operates the vessel, and a civil lawsuit may not be filed until six months after the claim has been presented to the company in writing.

Teen dead after Louisiana 2-vehicle accident

A two-vehicle accident near Jackson left one person injured and another dead. That accident took place on LA 964 around 6:45 a.m. on Jan. 15. All lanes were closed for a few hours after the accident.

According to the Louisiana State Police, a 47-year-old man was traveling north on LA 964 in a 2004 Chevrolet truck when the man's vehicle collided with the driver's side of a 2001 Chevrolet Impala driven by an 18-year-old man. The Impala had crossed into the northbound lane after it had begun sliding sideways in a curve. The teen was thrown from the Impala due to not being properly buckled.

2 injured in car crash in Louisiana

A car crash in rural Louisiana has left two people injured and a highway shut down for some time as the authorities worked to clear the scene of the accident. The wreck took place in Ventress at approximately 11 a.m. on Jan. 8.

The police report indicates that the trouble occurred on LA 415 when a 34-year-old woman from New Roads appears to have veered off the highway for reasons unknown. The police believe that she then overcorrected to get back on the road and traveled into the path of oncoming traffic, crashing head-on into a southbound vehicle with an 18-year-old male resident of Ventress behind the wheel.

How to protect against injuries during a car accident

Residents of Louisiana may not be aware that there are preventable measures that can be taken before a car accident. Drivers should always insist that any passengers wear seat belts at all times and observe traffic signals to reduce the possibility of an accident happening. However, no amount of preparation can completely prevent a car accident, regardless of how cautious the driver is being.

Injuries to the lower extremities such as the legs, knees and feet can be diminished when positioning them together. Take care to not position them at an awkward angle, making them vulnerable if a car accident happens. A common injury that happens in collisions is to the back area, whether it is a minor injury such as a sprain or a more serious one like a slipped disc or spinal injury. Damages of this nature could last for several years if proper seat belts are not worn.

Louisiana accident kills 3, injures others

According to state police, a car accident that occurred on Jan. 1 around 8 p.m. in Livingston Parish killed three individuals and injured two others. The investigation shows that the driver of a 2004 Mazda MZ6 struck a 2000 Mercury Mountaineer in the opposite lane. The 24-year-old Mazda driver was not wearing his seat belt and died as a result of the collision.

The two-vehicle accident happened when the Mazda that was traveling northbound on LA Hwy 447 approached a right-hand curve in the road and crossed over the center line, colliding with the Mercury that was heading southbound on the highway. The driver of the Mountaineer is a 38-year-old man who was with his wife and two daughters during the accident. He suffered moderate injuries.

FDA limited in efforts to ban powdered caffeine

Residents in Louisiana may be familiar with caffeine sources such as coffee or energy drinks. However, they may not be aware of a potentially dangerous form of caffeine that is created in a lab and sold online. While caffeine is only mildly addictive and safe in moderate doses, powdered caffeine can be deadly. Despite this fact, the Food and Drug Administration is limited in what it can do to outright ban the product.

This is because the FDA can only ban products or remove them from the market after proving that they are dangerous when used as directed. In many cases, manufacturers are telling consumers that the product can be deadly in small doses. Warning labels also say that statements have not been verified by the FDA. So far, the FDA has published blog posts warning consumers about the dangers of the product.

Liability in head-on collisions

A busy Louisiana road was the site of a serious head-on accident that left four people injured, one of them seriously. The crash resulted when a westbound compact SUV crossed the centerline into oncoming traffic and collided with another SUV. The accident resulted in moderate to serious injuries for three people in the car that was hit, while the driver of the car that crossed the centerline also suffered moderate injuries.

A head-on collision, even at a relatively slow speed, can cause serious injuries or death, as the force of the crash is multiplied by the combined speed of the two vehicles. Contributing factors commonly include faulty signage or signal function, driver inattention (often due to cellphone use or texting), driver fatigue, poor road conditions, poor visibility or alcohol use.

Keurig recalls more than 6.6 million coffee makers

Louisiana consumers should be aware that on Dec. 23, Keurig recalled approximately 6.6 million coffee makers in the United States. According to the company, the beverage brewers can overheat, causing burning liquid to be spilled during the brewing process.

The company stated that it received approximately 200 reports regarding burning liquid spills from the model number K10 Mini Plus Brewing Systems product. Ninety of the 200 reports included burn-related injuries that were suffered by consumers. The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission released a statement urging consumers who had purchased one of these brewers, which were sold between 2009 and 2014, to call the company in order to arrange for free repairs.

Woman killed by garbage truck in Metairie

A woman has been killed in a traffic accident between a car and a garbage truck on a city street in Louisiana. The crash happened at 4:15 p.m. on Dec. 12 in the Metairie section of Jefferson Parish.

According to witnesses to the wreck, a garbage truck failed to heed a stop sign at the corner of Harvard Avenue and Wabash Street and went into the intersection, striking a gold Chevrolet Malibu that had been nearby. There were at least three people inside the Malibu, and the collision proved fatal to one of them. An 85-year-old woman who had been in the back seat was pronounced dead at the scene. Two other passengers in the vehicle escaped serious injury, as did the driver of the truck.

What is the Death on the High Seas Act?

The Death on the High Seas Act is a federal law that was passed in 1920 seeking to regulate the process of legal redress for wrongful death actions that have their origin in the international waters between countries. It has been substantially and controversially expanded by President Reagan's decision in 1988 to extend the aquatic borders of the United States.

There are two ways through which a death at sea may be legally actionable under DOHSA. There are survival actions, under which a representative of the estate of the deceased sues the person, people or organization that they feel is legally liable for damages that the deceased person would have tried to sue them for if they had survived. This may include pain and suffering. There are also wrongful death actions, where the family of someone who died on the high seas sues for the damages that have been done to their family's economic future and the loss of consortium.

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Veron, Bice, Palermo & Wilson, LLC
721 Kirby Street, P.O. Box 2125
Lake Charles, LA 70601
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