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Putnam County two-vehicle collision kills two, injures four

Posted on Thursday, May 26th, 2016   

Two individuals lost their lives while four others sustained critical injuries during a head-on collision between two vehicles along State Route 136 at Bear Creek Road in Putnam County, Tennessee around 4:30 p.m. last Monday, May 23.

According to preliminary investigations made by the Tennessee Highway Patrol, a Honda CR-V crossed the center line of State Route 136 at Bear Creek Road, causing the CR-V to hit a Chevrolet Impala head-on in the northbound lane of the highway. The driver of the Honda was identified as 21-year-old Joshua Burkett, who was killed in the accident. Burkett’s passenger, identified as 26-year-old Kalya Randolph, sustained injuries and was transported to Cookeville Regional Medical Center for treatment.

The Chevrolet’s occupants were identified as 67-year-old David Maynard, his 66-year-old wife Kathleen Maynard, and two of their children – 15-year-old Nikita and 12-year-old Damon. Kathleen Maynard died in the accident, while the rest of her family was airlifted to Vanderbilt University Medical Center in Nashville to receive treatment for their serious injuries.


Jeep issues recall over potentially faulty airbags

Posted on Tuesday, May 24th, 2016   

Around 500,000 Jeep Wranglers are being recalled by Fiat Chrysler Automobiles due to an airbag issue, with approximately 392,000 of these vehicles located in the United States. The concerns regarding this recall are extremely serious, as it has been discovered that the airbags on the driver’s side of these vehicles might not deploy in the event of an accident.

7,400 2011-2016 Wranglers used for delivering mail have been recalled in the US, as well. These vehicles are different in that they have right-hand drive.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) discovered the defect during investigations, causing the automaker to issue the recall. According to Fiat Chrysler Automakers, because Jeep Wranglers are built and often used for off-roading purposes, dirt accumulated during these excursions could clog the system that activates an airbag deployment in an accident. Luckily, should this occur, an airbag warning light will come on, alerting the driver to the issue.

The automaker has stated that so far, no injuries related to the defect have been reported.


More than 250, 000 deaths in the U.S. attributed to medical error

Posted on Wednesday, May 11th, 2016   

A new study in the latest issue of BMJ, a weekly peer-reviewed medical journal, shows that most medical errors go unnoticed, especially in official records.

In their study, it was revealed doctors estimate around 251,454 deaths resulting from medical malpractice yearly in the United States.

This statistic is higher than the number released by a 1999 study from the Institute of Medicine, which lists the number of deaths in the 44,000 to 98,000 range, while other studies estimated medical-error related deaths are about 195,000 per year.

The United States Department of Health and Human Services Office of the Inspector General reported in 2008 there had been 180,000 patients who died due to medical error in Medicare patients alone.

Dr. Martin Makary, a professor of surgery and health policy at Johns Hopkins, stated the reason behind the different number of reports on deaths via medical errors is due to the lack of accurate data on these kinds of fatalities.

At Pohl & Berk, LLP, we know how difficult it is for personal injury accident victims to return to their everyday life after experiencing a traumatic incident in Tennessee. Our legal team wishes to restore normalcy in our client’s life by do everything in our power to provide justice and financial compensation via aggressive and compassionate legal representation. Call our offices today at (615) 277-2765.


NHTSA requires Takata to expand recall in U.S.

Posted on Tuesday, May 10th, 2016   

After reviewing three investigations and conducting its own inquiry into the matter, federal safety regulators say they know what causes some Takata airbags to suddenly explode and send metal fragments into the cabin, according to The New York Times.  As expected, federal safety regulators say that long-term exposure to humidity and fluctuations in temperature causes the airbag’s propellant to degrade.  Over time, this degradation causes the propellant to become unstable and more likely to explode when unnecessary.

In response, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration said that Takata would be required to initiate the recall of another 35 to 40 million airbags in the United States.  This new recall will raise the number of airbags that will have been recalled in the U.S. to around 64 million, making “‘the largest recall in American history,’” according to NHTSA administrator Mark Rosekind.

Though Takata eventually began to use a drying agent to better stabilize its airbag propellant, ammonium nitrate, those airbags without it still pose a risk to drivers, even if that risk may not be immediate.  Since time is a factor in the degradation of the airbag’s propellant, new vehicles equipped with a defective airbag will not become dangerous for several years.  However, every one of these airbags will eventually pose a risk, which is why every airbag without the drying agent will be replaced as part of this most recent recall.

Takata has been given until the end of 2018 to finish recalling vehicles that were equipped with its defective airbag, and until the end of 2019 to recall those newer defective airbags that were installed in other recalls that were initiated in recent years.


Settlements announced for families of Georgia Southern students killed in accident

Posted on Thursday, May 5th, 2016   

Large settlements have been announced in the cases of the families of three Georgia Southern University students who were killed in a tragic truck accident in 2015. The lawsuits named several defendants, such as U.S. Xpress Inc. and John Wayne Johnson, the driver of the big rig that caused the accident.

The tractor-trailer driven by Johnson crashed into the back of Emily Clark’s vehicle, which was siting in traffic due to an earlier collision, on eastbound I-16 at around 5:55 a.m. on April 22, 2015. According to Brandon Peak, a member of the legal team, the driver did everything she possibly could to get out of the way after seeing the truck barreling in her direction. It appears that Johnson likely fell asleep before the accident, because there were no brake marks on the road.

The attorneys at Pohl & Berk, LLP send their condolences to the families of those injured in this accident. Too often, drivers are not held accountable for their actions and the wrongful death that results is tragic.

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