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New Toyota And Chrysler Recalls Issued Due To Safety Concerns

This past week both Toyota Motor Corp. and the Chrysler Group announced significant vehicle recalls due to safety issues. Cars affected by the recall include Tacoma Trucks, Camry sedans and Venza vehicles. Problems include airbag defects that prevent the airbag form deploying in the event of an accident. Additionally, Chrysler is recalling over 200,000 Jeep Liberty sport utility vehicles due to problems with its rear lower arms that may cause drivers to lose control of the vehicle. The number of injuries caused by these defects is unclear.

If you have been injured in a car accident or other motor vehicle accident as the result of a defect, several different avenues of recovery exist. Filing a product liability lawsuit may be possible to recover compensation for your injuries. Consulting with an experienced Stockton product liability attorney is important to determine your rights.

Product liability lawsuits fall into three main categories.

• Design Defects – these occur when foreseeable risks of harm could have been reduced or eliminated by using another design, and failure to do so makes the product unsafe.

• Manufacturing Defects – these occur when the product is being made. Usually an. error in the manufacturing process causes just a few products out of all those of the same type to be defective. Products are designed to be used for certain purposes and if someone uses them for another purpose, there may be danger of harm. Therefore, the manufacturer has to include clear, visible and concise warnings describing the danger and failure to do that can cause the product to be considered defective.

• Marketing Defects — the distributor and seller of the product may also be liable in a strict liability case, if there is found to have been misleading marketing.

Although every case is different, injuries that occur from recalled products typically result from design or manufacturing defects and by filing a negligence lawsuit, an experienced Stockton personal injury lawyer may be able to obtain the money necessary to pay for your harm.

For more information or if you or a loved one has been injured as the result of a defective product, contact a top Stockton accident lawyer at the Law Office of Frederick J. Sette for an immediate, confidential consultation.

Racing Accident Leads To Numerous Personal Injury Lawsuits

A recent article out of San Diego details the tragic circumstances surrounding the deadly off-road trucking accident that occurred a little over and year and a half ago. The Mojave Desert off-road racing accident killed 8 spectators and seriously injured many more. After the accident, several lawsuits have been filed alleging negligence on the part of the U.S. government, race organizers and the driver, Brett Sloppy.

Sloppy, a San Marcos man, hit a rock at the bottom of a jump, which then caused his truck’s steering to fail. The truck overturned and plowed into a crowd of spectators.

If you have been injured in a serious accident – or lost a loved one as the result of wrongful or negligent conduct – consulting with an experienced Stockton personal injury attorney is important to answer your personal injury questions and protect your rights.

Here, several avenues of fault may exist. First, an internal investigation has shown that the Bureau of Land Management did not adequately monitor the race and failed to follow all the necessary procedures. Further, only one ranger was on patrol. Spectators crowded the course.

Nearly all of the families of individuals killed have filed wrongful death suits, while many of those injured have filed personal injury lawsuits.

A representative stated that because the United States owned the land, it will bear the bulk of the responsibility. “It [the federal government] was supposed to be supervising the race, but it didn’t.” Many observers also note that responsibility for the accident will not likely be placed on Sloppy. Participants in a race like the California 200 are not responsible for the safety of spectators, he said. “It’s similar to the batter who hits a foul ball that hits somebody in the head and kills them … the batter is not responsible.

Hopefully with all the attention garnered from this event, safety measures will be put in place to avoid future accidents.

For more information about this truck accident or any other personal injury accident, contact a dedicated Stockton personal injury attorney for a free, confidential consultation.

California Hospitals Perform Poorly In Medical Error Study

A recent study by the “Leapfrog Group,” a group that evaluates how well hospitals perform, has determined that 41% of California hospitals receive a grade of C or lower. The Leapfrog Group looks at hospitals with the hopes of encouraging hospitals to take action to reduce preventable medical injuries and deaths.

The reality is that although the United States spends more per person than any other nation, the quality of our health care at many hospitals falls short. Statistics place the number of preventable injuries and deaths at a staggering 98,000 per year in the United States. A “preventable injury or death” is considered an adverse event that is caused as the result of deficient medical care and management, rather than as the result of an underlying health condition.

If you believe you or a loved one has suffered a serious preventable injury while in the hospital, it is important to consult with a Stockton personal injury attorney right away to review your matter and determine your next steps. Where a hospital, physician or other medical staff is found responsible for causing you harm, it may be possible to recover compensation for your damages. This may include such items as your medical expenses, pain and suffering, lost past and future wages and emotional distress.

The Leapfrog preventable medical error study provided these first-ever scores in an effort that consumers and employers become aware of hospital that provide poor patient quality of care. A listing of the ratings of all of the California hospital can be found at

Nationwide, 47% of the 2,652 hospitals that were graded received a C or below, including some big-name institutions such as Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center.

Despite recent efforts by many hospitals to improve the number of medical mistakes, including patient-safety initiatives such as implementing electronic medical record keeping, hand-washing protocols, checklists and other strategies, little real progress has been made in protecting patients from harm.

A representative of Leapfrog analogizes the number of patient deaths per day from medical errors to that of daily airplane crashes noting, “If an airline was crashing and killing 400 people every day, we would have made a lot of progress in the last decade … Without public pressure this won’t become a top priority for hospital leaders.”

In an effort to mimic the success of restaurant rating systems, Leapfrog embarked on its hospital rankings, working with leading patient safety experts to analyze 26 different hospital measures evaluating infection rates, medication errors and other relevant data.

In California, Leapfrog graded 264 hospitals and gave a C or lower to 41% of them. It handed out A’s to 97 facilities, Bs to 58 and Cs to 83. An additional 26 hospitals ranked even lower. Leapfrog didn’t issue a letter grade for them and said it will give those lowest performers until November to show improvement before issuing them a D or F.

Observers note, this is a huge breakthrough for consumers, explaining that while hospital advertising may tout the latest medical wing or other marketing feat, the reality is that they may have good hospital safety scores.

For more information about California hospital safety, or if you believe a loved one may have been injured as the result of a medical error, contact the dedicated Stockton personal injury lawyers at the Law Office of Frederick J. Sette for an immediate consultation.

Court Determines General Contractors May Be Liable For Independent Contractors’ Work Place Injuries

A long running case recent case has determined that a general contractor may be held liable for personal injuries suffered by an independent contractor if the general contractor actively engaged in conduct that contributed to the independent contractor’s injuries.

In Tverberg v. Fillner Construction, Inc. an independent contractor was injured on a worksite after falling into a four-foot deep hole. The contractor had recognized the danger and requested that the condition be fixed. However, before the dangerous condition could be remedied, the contractor was injured.

If you have been injured in a workplace accident it is important to contact an experienced Stockton work place accident attorney to discuss your case and determine your next steps.

This case went through several court hearings, looking at the responsibility of different people on a job site, including the owner, the general contractor, supervisors and several lower level subcontractors when a party suffers an injury.

Here, the court determined that although an independent contractor on the job may retain some responsibility for his or her injuries, a general contractor on a jobsite could be held directly liable for injuries suffered by an independent contractor where the general contractor actively engaged in conduct that contributed to those injuries.

Further, it’s not enough to establish liability if the general contractor simply allows a dangerous condition to exist (is passive about an unsafe condition). The general contractor must be actively involved in some way in creating the dangerous condition. In this situation, because the general contractor asked for the holes to be dug, directed another contractor to dig the holes and failed to cover up the holes after requested to do so, the court determined that any one of these actions could constitute an “affirmative contribution” to the accident.

As a result, the appellate court sent the case back to the trial court for a determination of liability.

If you have been injured on a work site, many complicated laws concerning your right to recover compensation exist. For more information, or to discuss your work accident case, please contact a top Stockton work place accident lawyer at the Law Office of Frederick J. Sette for an immediate consultation.

Racing Icons Bill Simpson And Chip Ganassi Develop Safer Football Helmet To Prevent Brain Injuries

Recent news has contained numerous stories of the dangers of concussions and how helmets have been inadequate to prevent serious injuries. Further, as evidenced by numerous lawsuits, many believe that the NFL as well as coaches and others charged with the safety of our athletes have ignored concerns about brain trauma in an effort to win games. Despite mounting evidence of the long-term effects of concussions, little has been done to improve the quality of helmets designed to protect players from brain injuries.

Indy racing icons Bill Simpson and Chip Ganassi have now developed a company that applies their knowledge of racing equipment safety in the design of a new football helmet.

Traumatic brain injuries (TBIs) such as concussions are the result of blunt force trauma to the head. Although TBIs resulting from football injuries have been getting a lot of press recently, similar brain injuries occur frequently as the result of a car accidents, motorcycle accidents and slips and falls. Any time you experience a sudden jolt or blow to your head, you are in danger of suffering a brain injury. Although the severity of a brain injury can vary, even the most mild bran injury should be evaluation by a medical professional. Mild brain injuries, left untreated or undiagnosed can worsen over time.

In mild brain injury cases, symptoms may be vague. You may experience headaches, dizziness, forgetfulness and confusion. Symptoms of severe brain injuries are often more recognizable and include vomiting, seizures, dilated pupils and extreme fatigue. All brain injuries have the potential to result in long term difficulties such as mood swings, personality changes, loss of memory and confusion.

In the instance of football players, current lawsuits have alleged that although the NFL and others knew of the dangers of concussions, they ignored these dangers, putting the health of players in peril in order to win more games.

The new helmet design created by Simpson and Ganassi seeks to eliminate this danger. So far the helmet has met with success. Last year, of the 20 players who wore the helmet during games none suffered a concussion. However, there were some complaints – such as that the padding becoming “soggy and smelly.”

The helmets are made of new materials such as carbon fiber, Kevlar and “other exotic materials,” and looks like a regular football helmet. However, the feel of the helmet is different and provides significantly more cushioning. As stated in the Sports Illustrated article, “The ultimate test for the new helmet isn’t going to be done in a lab. It’s going to be whether this helmet will get out to players and reduce the numbers and severity of concussions.”

For more information about brain injuries, or if you have suffered a concussion or other brain injury, contact a top Stockton brain injury lawyers at the Law Office of Frederick J. Sette for an immediate consultation.

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.

Stockton Police Officer Killed In Rear End Car Accident

Colleagues, family and friends are grieving the tragic death of Kimberly Pinto, a Stockton Unified School District police officer. She died following a Lodi area car accident. Reports indicate that she was traveling southbound on Highway 99 near Kettleman Road at 5:45 a.m. when the two-vehicle accident occurred. Pinto’s car – a Honda Accord – collided with another vehicle and veered off the highway, striking a eucalyptus tree. The other vehicle in the rear-end crash spun out of control, but the driver was not injured. The driver told CBS13 news “She hit me from behind and we started spinning out.”

Pinto was well respected in the Stockton police department, in a statement issued by the SUSD Police Department, the Police Chief noted “A natural and talented leader, Kim had all the attributes to be chief one day. Kim brought humor, drive, and competence to everything she undertook. She will be deeply missed both personally and professional by all who knew her.”

The accident remains under investigation, although no charges are likely to follow.

Millions of car accidents occur each year across the United States, leading to thousands of serious personal injuries and deaths. According to the most recent National Highway Transportation Safety Administration (NHTSA) California ranks number one with the highest number of car accidents. Although many factors can cause a car crash, the crowded highways and long commutes Californian’s face each day increases their chance of being in a car accident at least once in their lifetime.

Types Of California Car Accidents

Not all car crashes are created equal. The kind of car accident you are in – whether a sideswipe, head-on or rear-end collision – often dictates the type and extent of injuries you are likely to sustain.

Although rear-end accidents may be less likely to result in serious personal injury than head-on collisions, as this accident demonstrates any type of car accident can lead to tragedy based on the circumstances surrounding a crash. For example, dangerous weather conditions or the design of a roadway may make serious injuries more likely. Further drivers commonly find themselves “rear-ended” where traffic is congested or when drivers have to stop unexpectedly. Because rear-impact crashes happen fairly frequently, the likelihood that significant injuries may occur is increased. If you or a loved one has been injured in any type of car accident, it’s a good idea to consult with an experienced Stockton car accident lawyer right away.

If you’ve been rear-ended, it’s also a good idea to keep in mind a couple of suggestions concerning what to do if you’ve been in a car accident. In the most serious accidents, many of these steps may not be possible.

First and foremost – it’s imperative to seek medical attention for you or anyone who may have been involved in the car accident. Once everyone has received the care needed, then you can begin the process of collecting general information. This includes the names, phone numbers and drivers license numbers of the drivers involved in an incident. It is also a good idea to get the names and phone numbers of passengers or other witnesses. You may also want to jot down any impressions you have about how the accident occurred, such as how fast the vehicles were traveling, the conditions of the roadway, any weather conditions, the time of day and any other detail you recall about the circumstances surrounding an incident. Even if you don’t think an issue is important, it may be turn out to be a crucial part in reconstructing how an accident occurred.

For more information about car accidents, or if you or a loved one has suffered injuries in a Stockton car accident, please contact the experienced Stockton personal injury lawyers at The Law Office of Frederick J. Sette for an immediate appointment.

San Francisco Pedestrian Accident Kills Safety Advocate

An investigation is underway into a pedestrian accident that killed a man in a wheelchair. According to reports, the accident occurred in San Francisco’s Hayes Valley neighborhood in the area of Market Street and Octavia Boulevard. The man killed was beloved by many, and was an advocate for making streets safer for the disabled. Ironically, The accident occurred in one to the city’s most notoriously dangerous intersections. In fact, in 2011 Market and Octavia had the most injury collisions of any San Francisco intersection, largely due to drivers making illegal or dangerous right turns, according to SFMTA.

One bystander notes, “I hate to say it, I’m not surprised. There’s been a number of accidents in the past three, four, five months,” said cyclist Michelle Forshner. “As careful as you can be as a cyclist, you’re watching to see ‘okay. I know it’s my turn to go. I’m not going to because these guys are going to hit me.’ You do the best you can, but it’s very scary.”

If you have been injured in any type of serious personal injury accident it is critical that you contact a skilled Stockton injury attorney right away.

Here, several issues may be at play. While certainly officials will investigate issues of driver error, recklessness and rights of way, questions surrounding the safety of the road way and intersection need to be explored. Further, when a particular street or intersection is responsible for a greater than expected number of accidents and injury, legal issues such as whether “roadway negligence” arise. A city or other governmental body may be held liable and responsible for paying damages where a stretch of road is particularly dangerous as the result of poor design, maintenance or other factors.

For more information about pedestrian accidents of roadway negligence, please contact an experiencedStockton personal injury lawyer for an immediate consultation.

San Francisco Rollover Accident Kills One, Seriously Injures Two Others

Police are learning more about the tragic San Francisco rollover accident that killed a 16-year-old boy in San Francisco. According to reports, Kevin San was heading to school Friday morning when another car slammed into his family’s minivan.The driver of the van has been booked with vehicular manslaughter not involving drugs or alcohol, with gross negligence.

If you or a loved one has been injured in any type of motor vehicle accident, it is critical to contact an experienced San Francisco personal injury attorney right away.

In certain situations drivers responsible for car accidents that result in personal injuries or deaths may be found both criminally responsible and civilly liable. For example, drunk drivers may be found guilty in criminal courts and be required to pay fines or spend time in jail. Further, if their actions injure another person, they may be held liable in a civil negligence or wrongful death lawsuit and be required to pay damages. Damages may include medical expenses, pain and suffering, lost wages and emotional distress.

Here in addition to San’s fatal injuries the accident injured San’s His mother and sister, as well as three other people who were in a different vehicle. The driver of the speeding SUV suffered minor injuries. She was booked into San Francisco County Jail later in the day. Along with facing vehicular manslaughter charges, she’s also been cited for several vehicle code violations. Whether she will face any civil negligencecharges is unknown.

If you or a loved one has been injured in any type of San Francisco accident please call an experienced Stockton personal injury lawyer for an immediate consultation.

Helicopter Accident In Sequoia National Forest Kills Beloved Outdoorsman

A tragic helicopter accident in the Sequoia National Forest has taken the life of a beloved California outdoorsman. According to reports, the Fresno man who led crews of volunteers through the Sierra Nevada mountains repairing trails and cleaning up marijuana grow sites has died after falling 50 feet from a helicopter. The man was to be lowered by a harness from the helicopter into the remote terrain, but something went wrong leading to the man’s death. A spokesperson stated that the accident remains under investigation adding, “They were trained by the Department of Fish and Wildlife and the military … we just don’t know what happened yet.”

Whenever an accident occurs, it’s always a good idea to consult with an experienced Stockton personal injury attorney. Even if filing a lawsuit is the furthest thing from your mind, its important to have someone on your side, investigating just what lead to a particular accident.

In this instance, the man was part of a volunteer effort to clean up illegal marijuana grow sites in the Sierra Nevada wilderness in recent years. The California man along with four other cleanup volunteers were to be transported by helicopter to a spot about 100 feet away from one grow site located in a remote area. The spokesman noted “We could hear on the radio that the helicopter was coming in and lowering the crew members … Then a call went out that somebody had been injured.” Although the man was breathing when he was carried out of the area by emergency medical technicians, he later died at a trauma hospital in Visalia.

For more information, or if you or a loved one has been injured in any type of personal injury accident, contact a dedicated Stockton accident lawyer at the Law Office of Frederick J. Sette for an immediate consultation.