Articles Posted in Tampa Bay Personal Injury Lawyer

A customer is suing Outback Steakhouse of Florida LLC for allegedly taking insufficient measures to prevent injuries.

The woman filed a complaint on June 29 in the Sixth Judicial Circuit of Florida – Pinellas County, alleging that Outback failed to maintain its floors in a reasonably safe condition.

According to the complaint, the woman alleges that she was a customer at the an Outback in Clearwater on Aug. 13, 2014 when she slipped and fell on a foreign substance on the floor. She allegedly sustained injuries, pain and suffering, hospital and medical expenses, lost wages and mental anguish.

The woman holds Outback responsible for allegedly creating a dangerous condition on its premises and for failing to provide warning signs around the area where she fell.

If you suffer an injury from a slip and fall or trip and fall accident at a restaurant, you should follow these first steps:

  1. Do not delay in seeking out medical treatment. Get medical care right away!
  2. Do not sign anything from the restaurant’s management or their lawyers or insurance company until you have retained your own legal counsel.
  3. Call Whittel & Melton at 727-823-0000 to get the legal help you need right away.

The injuries sustained in a slip and fall or trip and fall at a restaurant can be serious and potentially permanent, with skyrocketing financial costs. You shouldn’t have to worry about money at a time like this, but many slip and fall or trip and fall victims do because they might be unable to work and provide for their families. Medical expenses are just another strain to your finances. Even if you have insurance, your co-pays will add up quickly when you pay out of pocket for every test, follow-up appointment, medical treatment, medication, therapy session, and whatever else your injury requires.

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Florida authorities said three teenagers – one 14-year-old and two 16-year-olds – stole a sport utility vehicle, sped away from officers and died in a fiery, violent crash early Sunday morning.

The 4:30 a.m. crash happened in Pinellas County.

A fourth teen in the SUV, who is 14, survived and is hospitalized.

All the teens all had criminal histories – including one who had gotten out of jail on July 31.

Reports indicate that a Ford Explorer and a Chrysler Sebring were stolen from a Clearwater car dealership Thursday. Both vehicles were spotted by deputies early Sunday morning. Deputies tried to apprehend the drivers of the cars, but didn’t pursue them. The sheriff’s office’s pursuit policy generally does not allow deputies to chase stolen cars.

Deputies believed the teens were using the stolen cars to commit burglaries. At one point, they set up a perimeter to try to catch the teens, but a deputy spotted the vehicles outside of the perimeter.

According to reports, the cars were in a “cat and mouse” game with each other, accelerating and slowing down, hitting speeds of 100 mph or more.

The deputy that spotted them did not initiate a high-speed chase, but the Explorer continued at about 100 mph when it hit another vehicle, caught fire and went airborne. The Explorer also hit a billboard pole.

The driver hit by the Explorer suffered minor injuries, reports indicate.

Officers found the Chrysler Sebring and arrested the two in that car; one is 16 and the other 18.

Drivers in the state of Florida are required to carry a minimum of $10,000 personal injury protection (PIP) and a minimum of $10,000 property damage liability (PDL)  insurance. Sadly, many drivers fail to abide by this law and drive without insurance. When someone is injured in a car accident with someone who does not have insurance or does not have adequate insurance, things can become quite difficult  for the injury victim.

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One person was killed and another injured after a crash early Monday in Palm Harbor involving pedestrians.

According to the Florida Highway Patrol, northbound US 19 was closed at Alderman Road for several hours early Monday. The roadway was reopened just after 7 a.m.

Troopers said a 2016 Honda Civic collided with two pedestrians crossing the northbound lanes of US Highway 19 at Alderman Road at the south end of the intersection.

The crash happened just after 4 a.m.

The driver of the Honda remained at the scene of the crash.

An 18-year-old man from Palm Harbor died at the scene. A female with him was taken to Bayonet Point Hospital in critical condition. The 47-year-old driver of the Honda was not injured.

The crash is currently under investigation.

Pedestrians are the most vulnerable people on the road. And because they are the most vulnerable, they should also be the most protected under Florida law. Our Tampa Pedestrian Accident Injury & Death Lawyers at Whittel & Melton can help you understand what your rights are if you have lost someone or been injured in a pedestrian accident.

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A 24-year-old man was killed in a single-vehicle crash overnight in Hillsborough County.

Officials said the man was traveling eastbound on West Waters Avenue, approaching Pinehurst Drive, and lost control of his Toyota Corolla.

After losing control, the vehicle rotated and struck the center median curb with the front passenger wheel and entered the center median.

The rear passenger door struck a standing pine tree, causing the tree to be uprooted and the vehicle to roll onto the roof.

Troopers said the man was not wearing a seatbelt and was ejected from the vehicle. He died at the scene.

The crash occurred just before 3 a.m.

Loss of control collisions happen for all sorts of reasons. The common factor in all these scenarios is the driver was unable to control their vehicle and as a result, there is a wreck.

When there has been a loss of control by a driver, investigating the cause of the auto accident can be complex. This is where having an experienced car accident lawyer can come in handy to help gather evidence like the police report, photos taken by police, statements by witnesses and other drivers, and the hiring of the right experts to prove what actually happened. Our Tampa Bay Auto Accident Lawyers at Whittel & Melton can help make sure you and your family are armed with the best legal representation. We can put our years of negotiating with insurance adjusters and defense attorneys to work for you and fight to achieve the maximum recovery on your behalf.

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A man was killed and a woman hospitalized after a Sunday afternoon incident at the Courtney Campbell Causeway boat ramp.

According to Tampa Fire Rescue, two people were in a boat that hit something in the water.

No further information was immediately available.

Even if you are operating your boat safely and carefully, it is sometimes impossible to avoid an accident. Our Tampa Bay Boating Accident Lawyers at Whittel & Melton have guided many Tampa Bay area residents through boating accident cases. The injuries sustained during a boating accident can be severe, which can create a stressful scenario for you and your family. We want to help you through this difficult time.

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Hillsborough County Sheriff’s deputies arrested a 27-year-old Gibsonton woman early Tuesday after she intentionally struck another woman with her car following an argument over parking.

Investigators said at around 3:40 a.m. on July 11, a 27-year-old woman and a 38-year-old woman got into a verbal altercation over “parking concerns” near Fish Hook Place in Gibsonton. Following the argument, the 38-year-old reportedly left the scene and drove south on Fish Hook Place, and the 27-year-old, who had a passenger in her car, followed her.

Shortly after, the 38-year-old got out of her car and approached the 27-year-old’s vehicle. The 27-year-old purposely accelerated into the other woman and then fled the scene.

The 38-year-old suffered serious injuries, but is in stable condition.

The 27-year-old was later located and arrested. Deputies charged her with Attempted Murder in the Second Degree and Operating a Motor Vehicle Without a Valid License.

When you or a loved one is the victim of a traumatic, intentional action, you may face medical bills, may be unable to work, may be suffering from physical pain, or may have lost someone you love. In most cases, the police and the criminal justice system will handle charging the attacker, but you may have a chance to recover financial compensation in civil court as well.

When someone intentionally hits another with their vehicle, this is no longer classified as an accident. The aggressor can be charged with crimes for their actions, but they can also be sued in civil court for damages. While these kinds of damages are usually available for accidental injuries caused by another person’s negligence, the damages awarded in an intentional act case are usually higher as the courts often want to punish the person for their outrageous behavior.  

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Two people were injured, one severely, when they were bitten by a group of five pit bulls running loose near a St. Petersburg home.

Officials said officers were called to the home on July 3 after the dogs were reported loose.

A 52-year-old woman was bitten on the leg while trying to help her neighbor.

The woman was hospitalized with severe injuries that required emergency surgery.

The dogs reportedly charged the officers when they tried to exit their patrol car. The officers used fire extinguishers to force the dogs back.

A Pinellas Animal Control officer who responded to the scene also had to fend off one of the dogs’ attacks.

Eventually, at a point where all five dogs had jumped back into the home, officers were able to trap them inside by closing the windows.

The dogs’ owner was not home at the time, but later helped the Animal Control officer load the dogs into a truck to remove them from the home. The owner, who just moved into the house a few days ago, according to neighbors, has not been charged, since police said there was no intent.

The dogs will be kept under quarantine for further investigation.

Dog bite attacks are a bigger problem than most people realize until an attack affects them personally. A dog attack can leave both physical and emotional scars.  The following statistics highlight the problem of vicious dog bites:

  • 20 percent of dog bite victims require medical attention.
  • According to the American Veterinary Medical Association, more than 800,000 Americans receive medical treatment for dog bites every year.
  • Unneutered male dogs are more likely to show aggression and are involved in 70 percent to 76 percent of reported dog bite incidents each year.
  • Pit bulls contributed to 64 percent of all fatal dog attacks last year.
  • 57 percent of fatal dog attacks involve more than one dog. A fifth of the attacks involve packs of four or more dogs.

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Fourth of July weekend is here! This is a holiday that brings thousands of boaters to the water. More boaters means more boats and people on the water, more alcohol, and an increased risk of accidents and arrests for Boating Under the Influence (BUI).

Keep in mind that police will be on the lookout for drunk boaters this holiday weekend. With that said, you should practice safe boating habits and make sure that you are vigilant about the safety of everyone on board your vessel.

Studies show that the majority of boating accidents occur between the months of June, July and August, on Saturday or Sunday, between 12pm and 6pm. The majority of boating accidents involve operators between the ages of 20 and 40. In the state of Florida, it is required that anyone born after Jan. 1, 1988 must have completed a boater education course approved by the National Association of State Boating Law Administrators (NASBLA) and Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC), or passed an approved equivalency exam before operating a boat with an engine of more than 10 horsepower.

The Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office is currently investigating a double drowning of two siblings at a Tampa hotel on Sunday.

Two siblings — a 12-year-old male and 17-year-old female — were pulled from the hotel swimming pool, both unresponsive around 3:30 p.m. Sunday.

The brother and sister had traveled with their family to Tampa from Dallas, Texas, with a large church group for a function.

Officials said deputies and fire rescue attempted to perform live-saving measures on the brother and sister. The boy was pronounced dead on scene and the girl was taken to Tampa General Hospital where she died Tuesday.

Summer is in full swing, and most Floridians or visitors to our home state are looking to cool off at the pool. Swimming pools are indeed one of the most popular places to be as swimming is one of the highlights of a summer vacation. Families vacationing in Florida often make the swimming pool their first stop after checking into their hotel room.

What you may not know is that on average, 400 children die every year from drowning in pools and spas across the United States. Emergency rooms treat an average of 5,100 children annually for injuries related to a drowning incident in swimming pools and spas.

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A 25-year-old motorcyclist was killed in a motorcycle collision Thursday night in St. Petersburg.

The crash occurred around 6:15 p.m. at 6th Avenue South and 28th Street South.

Police said a Ford Focus, driven by a 52-year-old woman was traveling northbound on 28th Street S. and made a left westbound turn at 6th Ave. S. and traveled into the path of the motorcycle.

The motorcycle struck the passenger side of the Ford and the woman was thrown from the bike, according to officials.

The woman was taken to Bayfront Health St. Petersburg Hospital where she died from her injuries.

The crash remains under investigation.

The Tampa Bay Motorcycle Accident Lawyers at Whittel & Melton know that being involved in a motorcycle accident can be an extremely traumatic experience. Motorcycle accidents are among the most devastating traffic accidents because they usually result in very serious injuries and even wrongful death. Motorcycle accidents often lead to enormous medical expenses, loss of employment or future earning power, and severe pain and suffering for those involved. Victims of motorcycle crashes and any surviving family members have the right to make a claim for compensation for the negligent actions of unsafe drivers on the road.

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