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Tragic California 200 Crash Near Lucerne Valley Kills Eight

This past weekend, an off-road racecar became airborne and crashed into a large group of spectators watching the California 200 near Lucerne Valley. Six people died at the scene and two more later that evening. Several more were injured.

When accidents happen at sporting events questions arise regarding liability. Many spectators assume they are safe at sporting and special events – whether baseball games, concerts, or car races. However, this is not always the case. Further, when accidents do happen, the party ultimately responsible for any injury depends on a variety of factors.

One of the first issues to determine is who owns the property? Here, the property was owned by the Federal government and controlled by the Bureau of Land Management. In some circumstances, owners of land may be held liable for dangerous events that occur on their property.

Further, was a third party, host, or contractor involved? Here the event was promoted by Mohave Desert Racing (MDR). Did MDR do all that was necessary to warn of risks involved in the event and take necessary safety precautions?

Additionally, did the driver’s or spectators’ actions play a role? The contract for the event specified that the trucks are to limit their speed to no more than 15 mph when spectators are near by. Witnesses report that the truck was going faster than this speed when it left the raceway and that the spectators were crowding the field.

Although the specific facts and circumstances surrounding this tragic case are unknown, the event has raised many questions regarding the safety of off-road races.

As a California attorney concerned about injury prevention, I am hopeful more safety measures will be implemented to prevent further off-road accidents and injuries in the future.

Personal Injury Lawsuit To Be Filed Against Muni In Death Of San Francisco Woman

According to the San Francisco Examiner, the family of a 23-year-old woman killed in a fatal Muni bus accident in August plans to file a personal injury lawsuit this week. Emily Dunn died in the pedestrian accident after a Muni shuttle bus hit her while crossing the street. Reports indicate that the bus driver was driving on the wrong side of the street.

If you or a loved one has been injured in an accident, it is important to speak to an experienced California accident law firm promptly to protect your rights and determine your next steps. A knowledgeable Stockton personal injury lawyer can provide critical advice concerning your personal injury questions and what to do after an accident.

Unfortunately pedestrian accidents are far too common. The National Highway Traffic Safety Association (NHTSA) estimates that nearly 80,000 pedestrians are struck each year by motor vehicles resulting in serious injuries. Nearly 5,000 of these accidents result in wrongful death. Many times, these accidents occur where the pedestrian has the right-of-way, is crossing at a cross-walk and obeying all traffic signals. An accident may occur because of driver negligence, such as where a driver is distracted, is speeding or has drinking. Other times, an accident occurs due to a condition of the road itself – such as where the design of the sidewalk is unsafe, debris blocks safe passage, defective roadway design or poor property maintenance.

When the negligence of other people or entities results in harm to you, you may be able to recover compensation for your injuries. Damages may include medical expenses, lost wages, mental distress and pain and suffering. An experienced California personal injury lawyer can evaluate your claim, conduct an investigation and determine which parties may be responsible.

For more information or if you or a loved one has been injured in a pedestrian accident, contact the dedicatedStockton personal injury lawyers at the Law Office of Frederick J. Sette. Our California accident lawyers are committed to helping those injured through the negligence of others.

Elderly Woman Killed In San Jose Pedestrian Accident

Bay Area news reports that an elderly woman was struck and killed in San Jose late Tuesday night while she was walking in the street. The woman was 75-years-old and was struck by a 19-year-old woman driving a Toyota Camry. The pedestrian accident is still under investigation.

If you or a loved one has suffered injuries as the result of any type of personal injury accident it is critical to contact an experienced Stockton accident lawyer promptly to preserve your rights and determine your next steps. Even though a lawsuit may be the furthest thing from your mind, it is important to discuss your options with a dedicated personal injury attorney in order to protect your future.

Reports indicate that the cause of the accident wasn’t “immediately clear.” Here, as in any accident it is important to investigate all potential factors in order to determine exactly what happened. Many times, the real cause of serious injuries and wrongful death isn’t readily apparent. For example, an accident may be the result of driver error – including recklessness or careless such as driving too fast for the conditions, distracted driving or drunk driving. Other times, a defective auto part – such as tires, brakes or lighting – leads to an accident. In these situations a knowledgeable Stockton product liability lawyer can advise you of your rights. In some cases, negligent roadway design – such as improper lighting, inadequate signage or poor maintenance is the real cause of an accident.

Determining the causes of an accident is the first step to recovering appropriate compensation for you.

For more information, or if you or a loved one has been injured in a car or pedestrian accident, contact the dedicated Stockton personal injury lawyers at the Law Office of Frederick J. Sette for immediate attention.

California Doctor To Pay Damages In Wrongful Death Lawsuit

    A California Court of Appeals has determined that a Newport Beach doctor must pay damages in a medical malpractice wrongful death lawsuit filed against him. The action involved his erroneous reading of a computerized tomography (CT) scan of an 85-year-old woman, Lois Shafer. A jury determined that Dr. Luke Cheung’s actions in misinterpreting the scan and failing to diagnose the woman’s intracranial bleeding, led to her unnecessary death.

    If you believe a loved one has died as the result of the negligent conduct of another, it is important to consult with aStockton wrongful death attorney. Where you believe a nurse, doctor or other hospital staff made a mistake that harmed – or led to the death – of a loved one, you may be able to file a medical malpractice lawsuit.

    Not all medical mistakes constitute a medical malpractice action that entitles a family to obtain compensation. Generally, you must be able to show that the doctor’s or other health care provider’s actions fell below the accepted standard of care and that these actions led to the harm.

    Here, Shafer was taken to the Hoag Hospital emergency room. After Dr. Cheung’s failure to diagnose the bleeding, an emergency room doctor then discharged Shafer. At trial, a medical expert testified that if Cheung had diagnosed the bleeding, Shafer wouldn’t have been discharged, treatment would have begun quickly and the patient would have had a very successful outcome…complete recovery or close to a complete recovery.”

    A California jury determined that based on the evidence, Cheung’s actions caused Shafer’s death. This past week, a Santa-Ana based appellate court determined that the evidence supported the jury’s decision and upheld the award

    For more information or if you believe a loved one may have been harmed by a medical mistake, contact an experienced Stockton wrongful death lawyer at the Law Offices of Frederick J. Sette for a free confidential consultation.

Gross Negligence Complaint Filed Against Northern California Doctor For Prescription Drug Deaths

A Northern California doctor has been accused of gross negligence in connection with prescription drugs. According to a report issued by the Medical Board of California, Dr. Thomas Neuschatz allegedly prescribed “escalating doses” of narcotics to patients who already had addiction issues. Further, he failed to take steps to determine and alleviate their complaints of pain.

The wrongful death and negligence complaint alleges that the doctor who practiced in Marysville, Chico and rural Yuba County caused the deaths of nine patients under his care. If you suspect a physician’s conduct has lead to the death of a loved one, seek the advice of a top Stockton wrongful death attorney right away. You may be able to recover compensation and protect others from harm.

Unfortunately, complaints such as those against Neuschatz are not uncommon. Prescription pain pills have been linked to more than 15,000 deaths/year or 41/day in the United States, making it a “national epidemic” according to the Centers For Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). One of the main culprits is the rise in prescriptions for morphine-based drugs, including oxycodone, methadone and Soma.

Specific complaints include that Neuschatz prescribed painkillers far in excess of the recommended amounts and that he continued to prescribe drugs to a 19-year-old boy who had a history of drug abuse.

Gross negligence claims against physicians arise as the result of “repeated acts of clearly excessive prescribing, furnishing, dispensing, or administering, of drugs or treatment …. as determined by the standard of the community of licensees…for a physician and surgeon, dentist, podiatrist, psychologist, physical therapist, chiropractor, optometrist, speech-language pathologist, or audiologist.”

In addition to the claim against Neuschatz, the California medical board has filed a complaint against an East Bay doctor – Edward Manougian – for his alleged activity in prescribing narcotic pain pills to patients who subsequently died.

A complaint has also been filed against a Santa Barbara doctor nicknamed the “candy man” who has been linked to at least a dozen patient deaths as the result of prescription drug negligence.

If the Medical Board of California determines that Neuschatz is guilty of gross negligence, he may lose his license to practice medicine in California and be subject to significant fines and penalties.

The disciplinary actions are separate from any civil action – including wrongful death lawsuits or medical malpractice actions – that may be filed by the patients or the patients’ surviving family members.

For more information about medical malpractice, prescription negligence or if you believe you or a family member has suffered an injury as the result of the actions of a medical professional please do not hesitate to contact a top Stockton wrongful death lawyer at the Law Offices of Frederick J. Sette. Our dedicated California personal injury lawyers are dedicated to protecting your rights.

Pedestrian Accident Leads To Safety Questions

A recent pedestrian accident has raised questions of safety. Pedro Velez-Hernandez was walking in a bicycle lane when he was struck by a vehicle that veered into the bike lane.

As a result of the accident, neighbors and residents raised concerns that the lack of sidewalks and fast traffic led to this death. While many times, accidents may just “happen” other times several causes lead to a serious personal injury or wrongful death. If you have or a loved one has been injured in an accident, it is important to contact a top Stockton accident lawyer to evaluate your rights and determine your next steps.

In some situations, “negligent roadway design” may be considered a factor in an accident, and in these cases, a municipality or other entity responsible for designing the particular thoroughfare may be found liable for accidents that occur. Negligent roadway design includes things such as poorly lit street, inadequate signage, and sometimes, the lack of sidewalks to accommodate foot traffic.

News reports note:

“Nationally, there are more than twice as many pedestrian fatalities in roadways and thoroughfares without sidewalks.”

Further, the California Vehicle Code prohibits pedestrians from using bicycle paths “where there is an adjacent adequate pedestrian facility,” in a code adjustment passed in 1977. But the code allows pedestrians to use roads and bicycle lanes when there’s no sidewalk – and, therefore, no other options.”

Here, the accident remains under investigation.

For more information or if you have been involved in a Stockton accident, contact the top Stockton accident lawyers at the Law Office of Frederick J. Sette for an immediate consultation.

College May Be Found Liable In Wrongful Death Lawsuit – In re Matter of John Fiocco, Jr., deceased

A tragic case out of New Jersey, in re Matter of John Fiocco, Jr., deceased, highlights the responsibility of public entities to maintain a safe environment. In the wrongful death lawsuit the family of young college student alleges that the College of New Jersey was responsible and should be held accountable for the death of their son. The parents, Susan and John Fiocco allege that “lax security measures” at the campus allowed a stranger to enter their son’s dormitory and murder their son.

The college argued that it was protected from civil suit as the result of immunity laws that shield public and charitable institutions from liability unless the institution was either “grossly negligent” or allowed a “dangerous condition” to exist at the time of an accident. However, the court ruled that allegations that the college allowed open access to the dorm 16 hours a day and did not make sure that exterior doors leading into the dorm and the trash compactor room were locked, could be considered “grossly negligent” and/or a dangerous situation. As a result, the college could not hide behind immunity statutes to shield itself from civil liability.

Similarly in California, public entities may be held liable for creating dangerous conditions. If you have been injured as the result of a dangerous condition on public property or have lost a loved one, a Stockton injury lawyer can advise you of your rights and consult with you regarding your next steps.

Under California law, several different issues and laws may be considered in determining whether to file a wrongful death lawsuit or premise liability claim. For example, was the public entity aware of the dangerous condition? Even if the entity was not aware of a condition – should they have discovered the condition? Did the entity adequately inspect and maintain the property? In the event the entity was aware of a dangerous condition, did it take adequate steps to prevent foreseeable risks of harm?

In almost all personal injury situations, especially those including a wrongful death, a detailed investigation must be conducted and many questions asked concerning the actions any person – or entity- took or failed to take to prevent an accident or injury from occurring.

In the tragic New Jersey case, a judge has determined that the college’s failure to keep its dormitories locked and safe, may be considered “gross negligence” by a jury and as a result, it is possible the college will be found liable and be responsible to pay compensation to the family for damages arising out of the loss of their son.

For more information about wrongful death or premises liability, please contact a dedicated Stockton injury attorneyat the Law Office of Frederick J. Sette, helping families of those harmed by the negligence of others for more than 15 years.

BART Operator In Fatal Railway Accident Was A Trainee

A report issued following the recent fatal Bay Area Rapid Transit (BART) accident reveals that the driver was still a trainee and not certified to drive the train.  According to an investigator for the National Transportation Safety Board, the man who was operating the train that killed two workers inspecting a section of track, was taking a “training and maintenance run” when the accident occurred.  Sources say that unions for the striking workers had warned that it would be dangerous for inexperienced operators to drive the trains after a representative of BART had stated it would train drivers to provide shuttle services during the railroad workers strike.  This finding will likely lead to additional questions such as whether the railroad was negligent or could be held liable in a California wrongful death action. 

Whenever a serious personal injury accident occurs, several questions concerning liability, negligence and cause arise.  While major transportation accidents often involve the NTSB, it is also important for an injured party or their family members to consult with an experienced Sacramento personal injury attorney who can begin an investigation into the incident on their behalf.  A skilled California accident attorney can look at all of the factors that cause or contributed to a particular incident and help you determine your next steps.  

For example in this instance one issue that may arise is whether the railroad was negligent in allowing the trainee to drive the train and whether this negligence was the cause of the workers’ deaths. If so, the railroad may be liable and responsible for damages. Further, railroad workers are one of the few types of employees not covered by traditional state worker’s compensation. However, the workers and their families may receive workers’ compensation benefits through different systems such as the Federal Employers’ Liability Act, also called the Railroad Workers Act. This act permits railroad workers not covered by their state’s workers’ compensation system to sue their employer for their industrial accidents and recover damages such as medical treatment and lost wages, and can also include pain and suffering damages. Many issues are raised whenever an individual suffers a serious personal injury or dies as the result of another’s negligence.

For more information or if you or a loved one has been injured in a California accident, please contact the top Sacramento personal injury attorneys at the Law Offices of Frederick J. Sette for an immediate consultation.

Evidence Suggests Truck Driver To Blame In San Francisco Bike Accident

San Francisco news has reported that a surveillance video shows that the driver of a truck may be responsible in last month’s bicycle accident at the intersection of Folsom and Sixth streets. The accident killed Amelie Le Moullac, a young cyclist on the way to work.  Video of the driver of a food delivery truck shows that he made critical errors and may have been driving too fast to safely make the turn.  According to a representative, he failed to get into the bike lane, which is the proper procedure when there's a bike lane and you're making a right turn."  

The family is considering filing a wrongful death lawsuit as a result of the accident.  A wrongful death lawsuit is similar to a personal injury lawsuit but is brought by the surviving family members of an individual killed as the result of the recklessness or negligence of another.  If you have lost a loved one as the result of the actions of another, it is important to consult with a top Sacramento wrongful death attorney right away.  A skilled wrongful death attorney can begin an investigation into all of the factors that may have lead to an incident.  In this instance, the bicyclist was initially blamed for her injuries.  However, a member of the bicycle coalition uncovered surveillance video that shows that although the truck had its blinker on, Le Moullac was right next to the cab and couldn't see it.

Further, the truck driver’s speed made it impossible for him to to safely make the turn.  Reports also reveal that the truck driver failed to get into the bike lane, which is the proper procedure when there's a bike lane and you're making a right turn.  In a statement following the announcement of the wrongful death lawsuit, the trucking company noted "Daylight Foods deeply regrets that one of its trucks was involved in a fatal accident, and we extend our sincerest sympathies to Amelie Le Moullac's family and friends. Daylight Foods takes traffic safety very seriously, and we are deeply saddened by this tragedy.”

For more information or if you or a loved one has suffered a serious personal injury, please contact the top Sacramento wrongful death lawyers at the Law Offices of Frederick J. Sette for an immediate consultation.

Wrongful Death Lawsuit Filed Against City Of Oakland Based On Roadway Negligence

The family of a bicyclist who died after being hit by a car on Grizzly Peak Boulevard has filed a wrongful death lawsuit against the City of Oakland. The negligence suit alleged that the condition of the roadway contributed to the death of Allen Lee, 53, due to its poor maintenance.

According to the lawsuit, the city should be held responsible in Lee's death because it knew that the roadway was in bad repair but failed to make the necessary improvements despite repeated complaints.

Accidents may happen for any number of reasons. While driver error, driver distraction or drunk driving may be the leading causes of car accidents, bike accidents and other roadway injuries, many times the seriousness of an accident is contributed to or exacerbated by the condition of the roadway.

Where the condition of the road - how it is designed or maintained - contributes to a bicycle accident or car accident, it may be possible to bring a roadway negligence lawsuit. By filing a roadway negligence lawsuit you may be able to recover compensation for various types of damages including medical expenses, pain and suffering and lost past and future wages.

Seeking the advice of a top Sacramento personal injury lawyer is important to determine all possible factors that may have caused or contributed to an accident to ensure you may recover all the compensation you deserve.

Here the personal injury complaint alleges that Lee was thrown over the front handlebars of his bike after his bike's front tire became caught in a two inch deep rut in the middle of the road that caused to bike to stop suddenly. The abrupt stop threw him into the path of an oncoming car that was unable to stop in time.

The complaint seeks damages from the city for its failure to keep the roadway in good repair. According to the lawsuit Oakland is responsible for ensuring its roadways are safely maintained. A representative of the family notes, "As recently as four or five months before this happened, there were local organizations that were communicating with the city about this particular roadway and all the cracks in it ...If the roadway poses a danger to either motorists or bicyclists and the public agency has notice of that danger, it is required to fix it."

The wrongful death lawsuit is seeking unspecified monetary damages from the city including costs associated with funeral and burial expenses, lost wages and punitive damages.

For more information about roadway negligence or wrongful death lawsuits contact an experienced Sacramento personal injury lawyer at the Law Office of Frederick J. Sette for an immediate consultation.