Articles Posted in Tampa Bay

A 7-month-old girl died Friday after she was bitten by the family dog.

Clearwater Fire Rescue responded to a call at the Fairwood Avenue residence about 2:12 p.m. Friday.

Authorities said the girl was being taken care of by her grandparents when a mixed-breed dog bit her.

The girl was transported to Mease Countryside Hospital, where she later died.

As is customary in such cases, Clearwater Police are conducting an investigation, in conjunction with the Department of Children and Families.

The dog has been removed from the home and taken to Pinellas County Animal Services.

Dogs can bring much happiness into our lives as well as decrease stress. Americans own an estimated 70 to 80 million dogs as pets. The sad truth is that sometimes dogs bite, and the aftermath can be deadly. Millions of Americans are bitten by dogs each year, and some of these dog bites cause serious injuries.

Dog bite injuries are the second most frequent cause of visits to emergency rooms among children, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Dog bites are responsible for almost 340,000 emergency room trips each year for children 12 years of age and under. Most dog bites, 61 percent to be exact, occur at home or in a familiar place.

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Residents are urging the Florida Department of Transportation for a traffic light at the intersection where two teens were killed this past weekend.

FDOT says it has already taken measures to make that intersection safer and has plans to do more in about five years.

Lakewood Ranch High School students and families are coping with the loss of 17-year-old boy and a 15-year-old boy who were killed in a crash on Saturday.

Troopers said the 17-year-old was making a left hand turn onto Pope Road in the Greyhawk Landing community and didn’t see a pickup truck that crashed into their car.

Residents have complained about the dangerous intersection on State Road 64 for a couple of years.

FDOT says it added a “directionalized medium” — white posts — that prevent people from turning left onto State Road 64. That change was made earlier this year.

There were 17 accidents last year at that intersection and have been seven so far this year.

The FDOT also plans to add a roundabout in 2023.

Each year the Federal Highway Administration reports approximately 2.5 million intersection accidents. Most of these collisions involve left turns. Across the United States, 40 percent of all crashes involve intersections, the second largest category of auto accidents, led only by rear end collisions.

Street intersection car accidents can result in serious personal injuries including traumatic brain injury, spinal cord injury, broken bones, burn injuries, internal injuries and even wrongful death. Head-on collisions, T-bone crashes and rear-end collisions are all possibilities at street intersections.

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The Florida Highway Patrol is currently investigating a fatal crash involving a motorcycle colliding with a school bus in Pinellas County Tuesday afternoon.

Investigators said the crash occurred at the intersection of 62nd Avenue North and 28th St. North. The bus was traveling west on 62nd Avenue, while the motorcycle, driven by a 21-year-old man, approached the intersection from the opposite direction.

When both vehicles reached the intersection, the bus driver turned the bus left onto 28th St. North, driving into the motorcyclists path, according to investigators. The motorcycle struck the right side of the bus, and the 21-year-old suffered fatal injuries in the collision.

None of the students or staff on board the bus were injured.

Motorcycle accidents are unfortunately far too common. School buses are larger vehicles sharing the road, so one small mistake on behalf of the driver can easily result in serious injuries and even death to motorcyclists involved in collisions.

Our Tampa Bay area Motorcycle Accident Attorneys at Whittel & Melton investigate bus accidents aggressively, and we will work to make sure you and/or your surviving loved ones get the full and fair compensation for serious injuries or wrongful death. Sometimes just settlements can be achieved through negotiations out of court, but we are not afraid to try the case in court. Our goal is to make sure you and your loved ones are taken care of financially in the future for the suffering endured.

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A bicyclist was hospitalized Monday morning after he was struck by a vehicle in Pinellas Park.

The crash occurred just after midnight at 62nd Avenue and 66th Street North.

Police said the bicyclist, an adult male, was hit in the northbound lanes, resulting in serious injuries.

He was transported to a hospital with life-threatening injuries.

Traffic Homicide Investigators are investigating the crash due to the severity of the man’s injuries.

No other information has been released.

If you or a loved one was involved in a bicycle accident and suffered serious injuries, our Tampa Bay Injury Attorneys at Whittel & Melton can help. We have the experience, knowledge and resources to help you recover the full and fair financial compensation that you are entitled to for the injuries that you have suffered.

We can help you obtain compensation for all types of serious bicycle injuries, including:

Bicycles offer minimal protection to riders. With just a helmet that the rider is wearing, bicycle accidents are often serious and leave injury victims suffering severe injuries. This is why our injury lawyers fight aggressively fight to help obtain the financial compensation to which you are entitled for your suffering.

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A 6-year-old boy died Sunday in an ATV crash in Lakeland.

Officials say the child was riding in an ATV driven by an 8-year-old when it crashed.

The boys were apparently riding on a dirt track when the ATV struck two dirt mounds and flipped onto its side, landing onto the 6-year-old boy.

The child suffered “massive head injuries.”

The Polk County Sheriff’s Office said his family brought him to a fire station after the crash and he was transported to Tampa Hospital where he was pronounced dead.

The 8-year-old boy was not injured.

The boys initially wore helmets but removed them after taking a break and did not put them back on.

According to the U.S. Product Safety Commission, nearly 90,000 people a year are injured, and another 120 people are killed in ATV accidents in the United States. Tragically, more than half of all ATV injuries and deaths occur in children under the age of 16. These fatalities can be frequent because children are riding ATVs weighing up to 600 pounds or more that are meant for adults, and can travel up to 60 M.P.H., so life-threatening roll overs and lethal injuries can easily happen.

Our experienced Tampa Bay Injury & Wrongful Death Attorneys at Whittel & Melton can take action for you if your child has been hurt or killed in an ATV accident caused by someone else’s negligence. We work to get maximum compensation for your suffering and financial hardships.

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A 16-year-old that was struck by a vehicle Friday afternoon in Tampa has died from his injuries.

The teen was hit while trying to cross E. Sligh Avenue near N. Rome Avenue around 3:45 p.m. on Friday.

Police say the teen was running northbound across the street, outside the crosswalk, when he was hit by a Honda Accord.

He was transported to the hospital in critical condition and died on Saturday from his injuries.

Officials say the crash remains under investigation.

Crossing the street where there is heavy traffic, can be quite dangerous. Pedestrians are the world’s most vulnerable road users as they lack the protection that drivers are afforded, which is why they rarely survive collisions. If they do survive, they will likely have serious injuries, including fractures and broken bones, traumatic brain injury or internal organ damage on top of emotional scarring and post-traumatic stress symptoms.

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Two people were injured in a boat crash in Tampa on Sunday, according to authorities.

The crash happened in the area of Channel Drive and Cayuga Avenue, near Davis Islands.

Tampa Fire Rescue believe a boat hit a pole and crashed.

Both people on the boat were injured. They were transported to a hospital unknown conditions.

No other details were immediately available.

Florida is a beautiful state that is abundant in rivers, lakes, and waterways. Many residents and visitors alike take advantage of the state’s beauty and enjoy various boating activities like fishing, skiing, tubing, and relaxing on the water. Sadly, accidents can occur while on the water. Personal injuries resulting from a boating accident are handled in a similar fashion to a car accident.

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Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office deputies arrested a Certified Nursing Assistant accused of sexually assaulting an 85-year-old man.

The 35-year-old is charged with one count of sexual battery.

Deputies say that through June 6 and June 9, the man sexually assaulted the man.

The man was allegedly working as a CNA at a senior living home, where the 85-year-old man lived.

The man is currently being held at Orient Road Jail.

Sexual assault in a nursing home or assisted living facility does happen. This can be the result of the facility not conducting proper background checks on every potential employee. When the facility fails to provide proper screening on any employee with a sexual abuse history, they can be held liable for any sexual abuse and/or negligence.

The facility can also be held liable for the sexual abuse because of improper employee supervision. This is often the result of poor training or understaffing. The nursing facility is required to properly train and supervise all employees on the best methods of spotting sexual abuse. When this does not happen, the facility can be held responsible for failing to take proper security measures to protect residents.

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Pedestrians killed by SUVs is a growing trend across the U.S. In Florida, the problem is quite severe as Miami ranks number 5 and Tampa ranks number 8 in the top 10 deadliest cities in America.

A Detroit Free Press/USA TODAY NETWORK investigation found that the SUV revolution is the most likely cause of escalating pedestrian deaths nationwide, which are up 46 percent since 2009.

Almost 6,000 pedestrians died on or along U.S. roads in 2016 alone — nearly as many Americans as have died in combat in Iraq and Afghanistan since 2002. Data analyses by the Free Press/USA TODAY and others show that SUVs are the constant in the increase and account for a steadily growing proportion of deaths.

The investigation found the following:

  • Federal safety regulators have known for years that SUVs, with their higher front-end profile, are at least twice as likely as cars to kill the walkers, joggers and children they hit, yet have done little to reduce deaths or publicize the danger.
  • A federal proposal to factor pedestrians into vehicle safety ratings has stalled, with opposition from some automakers.
  • The rising tide of pedestrian deaths is primarily an urban plague that kills minorities at a disproportionate rate.
  • It is most prominent in cities both in the industrial heartland and warm-weather spots on the nation’s coasts and Sun Belt. Detroit; Newark, New Jersey; St. Louis; Baton Rouge, Louisiana; Miami, San Bernardino, California, Birmingham, Alabama; Tampa; Fayetteville, North Carolina; and Phoenix had the 10 highest per-capita death rates among cities with populations of at least 200,000 in 2009-16.

Due to their size and construction, an SUV-pedestrian accident usually results in fatality.  The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) says that the total number of pedestrian deaths involving motor vehicles has risen to almost 6,000 annually. Since 2009, that is an increase of around 50 percent, which makes sense as the number of people purchasing SUVs has drastically increased. Sadly, with more people driving SUVs, there is a greater chance that an accident with a pedestrian will involve an SUV.

If you have has lost a loved one in a  pedestrian wrongful death accident in the Tampa Bay area, our Tampa Pedestrian Accident Attorneys at Whittel & Melton are ready to help you file a claim. We can procure the necessary evidence and deal with the insurance companies involved so that you don’t have to. Funeral costs, loss of companionship, lost wages and other issues can make a pedestrian wrongful death accident difficult to overcome. Securing strong legal counsel as soon as possible can be a key piece in recovering what is owed to you.

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After a dozen elders overheated and died in a Hollywood nursing home during Hurricane Irma last year, Florida has passed new rules requiring health facilities to install backup generators capable of keeping the air conditioning blowing if the power goes out.

The state healthcare agency in charge of regulating institutions like nursing homes and assisted living facilities has not been able to inspect all the generators before the start of hurricane season, which was June 1.

The Agency for Healthcare Administration sees facilities inspected once every two years, and apparently has no plans to change that. This means that some generators won’t be inspected by AHCA this storm season or possibly even before the season after that. There are nearly 3,800 nursing homes and ALFs around the state.

Local fire departments also inspect nursing homes annually for life and safety, so the generators could be checked then.

The rules passed by the Florida Legislature and signed by Gov. Rick Scott require healthcare facilities to submit a safety plan verifying they have installed a working generator or alternate power source that can supply electricity for a maximum of 96 hours.

AHCA is tasked with reviewing the new emergency power plans for the required generators, but the rules set few requirements for how the agency will ensure the plans are being followed.

The new rules also state that AHCA “may request cooperation” from Florida’s fire marshal to inspect the generators.

Penalties for not following the rules include but are “not limited to, license revocation, license suspension, and the imposition of administrative fines.” AHCA may also grant extensions until January 2019 for generator installation.

Pinellas County has 70 nursing homes and nearly 200 ALFs.

When a nursing home or ALF is not prepared to manage residents in the midst of a tropical storm or hurricane, it can cause residents to suffer from various personal injuries and even wrongful death. For those who suffer injuries while in a nursing home environment, our  Pinellas County Nursing Home Abuse Attorneys at Whittel & Melton can investigate whether the nursing home should be held responsible for their actions.

We can help injured nursing home residents recover financial compensation to cover medical expenses, therapy, rehabilitative care, as well as wrongful death expenses. We will look into nursing home and ALF policies and practices to determine if negligence contributed to, or caused a resident to suffer harm.

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