Articles Posted in Tampa Bay Personal Injury Lawyer

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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A motorcyclist was hit and killed while traveling on U.S. 19 in Pinellas County on Wednesday.

Troopers identified the victim as a 25-year-old man from Port Richey. He was driving northbound on US 19 when a Ford F150 turned left into the path of the motorcycle causing the fatal collision.

He was transported to Mease Countryside Hospital where he later died.

Troopers say charges are pending against the 56-year-old female driver.

While there is a sense of freedom that comes with riding a motorcycle, there’s also a fear that other drivers won’t share the road. Every day, a motorcyclist is injured or killed in Florida. In too many incidents, the crash was caused by a negligent driver who was not looking or paying attention.

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Tampa Police have arrested two men for street racing on the Gandy Bridge.

Both men face unlawful racing on a highway charges.

Police say they stopped the two men late Saturday night and found two children in one of the men’s cars.

Both children were less than 5 years old. Police did say the kids were in child safety seats at the time.

Authorities said that people using the Gandy Bridge as a drag strip is a constant problem.

The incident comes less than two weeks after a tragic crash just a couple miles away on Bayshore Boulevard.

A mother and her toddler were struck and killed by a teen who was street racing.

The two drivers in that tragic crash are facing vehicular homicide charges.  

Drag racing can be dangerous, which is why it is illegal to do in the street. Drivers who choose to race on public streets can easily lose control of their vehicles, which can result in serious collisions that lead to injuries and even wrongful death. If you were in a car crash caused by someone speeding or racing, let our Tampa Bay Auto Accident Attorneys at Whittel & Melton help you with your case.

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A Tampa Bay Area family wants changes after a 63-year-old was struck and killed by a car while crossing 40th street in the Temple Crest community.

This woman is at least the second person who has been hit and killed while crossing the street in recent years. There is a crosswalk and pedestrian signs, but cars continue to speed by the retirement community.

This is why neighbors and the woman’s family are pushing for changes. They want the city to install a flashing yellow light with verbal commands for pedestrians that tell when it’s safe to cross.

Neighbors also said they’d like to see a red flashing light similar to the one on Hillsborough Avenue.

Tampa crews began making some improvements shortly after the woman’s death. The city is adding flashing lights.

The driver who struck the woman has not been charged. Authorities said that driver was unable to avoid the accident.

Pedestrian accidents can result in shattered bones, contusions, internal bleeding, head trauma, spinal cord injuries, traumatic brain injuries, and even wrongful deaths. The severity of these accidents can result in permanent disability or years in physical rehabilitation, as well as mental pain and suffering. Our Tampa Bay Pedestrian Accident Injury Attorneys at Whittel & Melton make it our goal to win compensation for your losses, and handle your legal issues so you can focus on healing.

Some blame a lack of road signs or lights, and others blame the speed limits in known dangerous areas for pedestrians. Whatever the case, the number of pedestrians killed in Tampa Bay is tragic and can usually be attributed to distracted or reckless driving.

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A wrong-way driver was killed late Monday in a crash in Plant City.

According to Plant City police, A 2002 Volkswagen Passat traveling southbound in the northbound lanes of N. Alexander Street collided head-on with a semi truck just before midnight.

The man driving the Volkswagen was killed at the scene.

The driver of the semi was not harmed.

An investigation is ongoing but officials said there is no indication yet why the man was driving in the wrong direction.

There were no passengers inside either vehicle at the time of the crash.

According to data from the United States Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), the number of people killed in motor vehicle accidents has decreased by a whopping 25 percent over the past 10 years. While those statistics are great, the number of deaths associated with wrong-way driving crashes has remained steady over that time, according to the NHTSA, with around 360 deaths associated with these types of collisions every year.

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Two people have died after two personal watercrafts collided in Tampa.

The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission said a 42-year-old Tampa man was fatally injured when his watercraft collided Monday in the waters off Tampa with a watercraft driven by a 41-year-old Clearwater woman.

The man died at a hospital Monday.

The wildlife commission said the woman was critically injured in the crash and died Tuesday at a hospital.

Authorities are still investigating the crash.

Boats are not the only causes of water-related accidents in Tampa. Jet Skis and other personal watercraft vessels are often to blame. Many people view these pieces of equipment as toys, so they fail to take the necessary safety precautions, but the truth is, they can be quite dangerous when used incorrectly.

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A 17-year-old girl is recovering at Johns Hopkins All Children’s Hospital Monday after a Largo crash involving a wrong-way driver left her and three of her friends all with serious injuries.

The girl was a passenger in the front seat when the cars collided head-on.

Her three friends were also hurt and hospitalized.

Troopers said the other driver in the crash, a 26-year-old woman, was driving the wrong way on 66th Street North. They believe alcohol was a factor.

The woman died in the wreck.

Wrong-way driving collisions usually end in fatality, as this case shows. Most wrong-way driving crashes occur as a result of motorists operating their cars under the influence of alcohol or because they are confused and unaware that they’ve turned onto an exit or one-way street.

Wrong-way driving accidents take the lives of numerous people in Tampa Bay every year, and leave many more seriously injured. The recent rise of wrong-way crashes is alarming, as all of these crashes should be preventable.

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A speeding car was apparently trying to flee law enforcement early Thursday morning when it crashed into a St. Petersburg house, according to law enforcement.

The 27-year-old driver suffered non-life threatening injuries and was taken to a local hospital.

Deputies say that drugs were found inside the car and that the investigation is ongoing.

He was charged with trafficking in cocaine, trafficking in MDMA, possession of hydromorphone, possession of marijuana, and reckless driving.

Just before 2:45 a.m., the Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office was conducting a traffic stop when the car took off, with one of the deputies trying to stop it, authorities say.

A violent crime task force unit happened to be in the area and it spotted the car being driven recklessly at a high speed, according to deputies.

The unit and Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office deputies did not try to stop the speeding vehicle, but did keep an eye on it, authorities said.

At around 2:52 a.m., the car crashed into a home on 5301 10th St. North, deputies say, adding that the person in the house at the time was not hurt.

Speeding is one of the largest contributing factors to any auto accident. Speeding is a negligent driver behavior that is not only illegal, but extremely dangerous, as this case shows. It is also more likely that those who drive faster than posted limits do so on a regular basis.

If your accident was the result of another person’s negligence, you have the right to file a claim for financial compensation. Filing an auto accident accident lawsuit can help victims recover damages for property loss, medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering and so much more. Our Tampa Bay Auto Accident Lawyers at Whittel & Melton can help you through the claims process so that you receive full and fair compensation for your losses.

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