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Phoenix Personal Injury Law Blog

Automakers woes could result in auto product liability claims

The decision over which vehicle to purchase is a personal one that is often guided by price, reputation and safety ratings. Unfortunately, any auto maker can produce a model that fails to meet expectations and can lead to consumers suffering serious injuries or significant property losses in the event that a vehicle proves to be defective. Arizona residents who have sustained damages or received injuries due to a defective car may have a basis for filing an auto product liability claim.

News recently broke concerning a joint investigation into two recalls issued by the automakers behind the Hyundai and Kia brands. The recalls concerned an engine failure that increased the likelihood of a car accident. The foreign-based automaker is ranked number five for its two brands but is experiencing significant declines in its stocks after news of the joint investigation being conducted by the U.S. Attorney's Southern of New York, which is a division of the Department of Justice, in collaboration with National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. 

Could your race determine your chances of death on a motorcycle?

Race only goes skin-deep but no racial category is immune from being treated unfairly. In our society, racial minorities face such discrimination most frequently on the job, on the street and elsewhere in their lives. But one startling statistic from a Johns Hopkins University study shows another shocking disparity: African-American motorcyclists have a higher chance of dying in a crash than their Caucasian counterparts.

3 African-American motorcyclists die for every 2 Caucasian motorcyclists

Military protected from medical malpractice by Feres Doctrine

In 1950, the U.S. Supreme Court made an interpretation of the Federal Tort Claims Act that effectively prevents anyone from suing the military over physical harm or death that occurs incidental to military service. The Feres Doctrine prevents those who have suffered harm from medical malpractice from holding the military responsible for mistakes or wrongful actions. It is unclear how many Arizona residents may have suffered harm for which they are unable to seek justice.

In Jan. 2017, an army sergeant went for a routine medical examination before attending dive school for the Army Special Forces. In March, he started struggling to keep up with the physical routine. Shortly afterwards, he started to experience difficulty breathing and then began to cough up blood, small quantities at first and then more measurable amounts. Two visits to emergency rooms -- one on base -- failed to produce an accurate diagnosis. Later, an appointment with a pulmonary specialist and a CT scan revealed the presence of a lung tumor.

Family seeks answers after alleged police brutality causes death

Police in Arizona and elsewhere are charged with the duty of protecting and serving the public. In some circumstances, officers must apply significant force in order to bring a volatile situation under control; however, unless the person presents a significant threat there is seldom the need to use deadly force. Sadly, there have been many recent incidents when alleged police brutality resulted in death

Recently, a family retained an attorney after the death of their loved one. Reportedly, police were called to a location that involved a physical attack by a resident of an apartment complex on an employee. The report noted that the perpetrator appeared to be under the influence of illegal substances. When police arrived, they supposedly had to resort to force to bring the man under control.

Fatigued driving major factor in countless auto accidents

In 2013, an estimated 72,000 crashes were caused by tired motorists. In Arizona, more than 1,780 auto accidents were attributed to drowsy or fatigued drivers. Experts claim that going longer than a day without sleep and then trying to drive is equivalent to driving while intoxicated.

There are no current laws in Arizona that make it a crime for a motorist to drive while tired. However, commercial drivers who are found to be drowsy are placed out of service, according to Arizona Department of Transportation regulations. Drivers who find themselves fighting sleep behind the wheel are urged to find a safe place to rest before recommencing their travel.

Auto accidents may result in drivers facing serious charges

There are many hazards that motorists face when they travel Arizona highways. Unfortunately, one of the greatest threats to their safety is the actions of negligent drivers, who often cause serious auto accidents. Recently, a driver was formally accused of causing the deaths of a young woman and her passenger. 

In July, police reported to the scene of a deadly crash that killed a 24-year-old woman and her 20-year-old passenger. Authorities say the wreck occurred when a speeding driver, a 30-year-old man, failed to stop at a traffic signal. His car collided with another vehicle in an intersection.

Some victims may fear reporting some types of police brutality

A recent report was published that addressed a serious problem within some police departments. While many incidents of police brutality do make the evening news, there is one type of abuse of power that may go unreported by victims. It is likely that there are Arizona residents who have suffered abuse by those sworn to protect them but are hesitant to report the crime.

According to researchers at a prominent university, there have been more than 400 rapes committed by police officers over the past nine years. While that number may be alarming since it translates into approximately 45 violent attacks a year, it is likely that far more go unreported by victims. In addition to the rapes that have been reported, there have been an estimated 630 incidents that involved officers forcibly touching victims inappropriately.

Man believes nursing home neglect led to mother's death

The decision to place an elderly or unwell loved one in a nursing care facility is seldom an easy one. The selection is usually made after diligent research to choose the facility that will best meet the needs of the resident. Unfortunately, in spite of the care taken to find the best placement, Arizona residents may make the troubling discovery that their loved ones fell victim to nursing home neglect or abuse.

One man thought he placed his mother in a facility that provided the skilled care she required. He stated that during one visit, he found her suffering from an uncontrollable cough and an inability to hear. He was disturbed by her failing health and took her to a local hospital for evaluation. According to his account, the staff at the facility claimed that his mother did not require additional care.

Owners of Toyotas may have basis for auto product liability claim

One of the market leaders in foreign auto manufacturers has been Toyota, which enjoyed a reputation for providing reliability for owners for years. Unfortunately, certain models of its hybrid line have been the subject of multiple recalls to fix a critical issue. Arizona residents who have suffered injuries or sustained significant property damages due to a defective automobile may have a basis for filing an auto product liability claim.  

Toyota has been plagued with a persistent problem with its hybrid models that has proved to be a difficult one to remedy. The automaker recently issued a third recall of approximately 800,000 vehicles to correct an issue with a component connected with the switch from electric power to gas. The software glitch can cause the vehicle to stall unexpectedly during operation. The latest malfunction bypasses the so-called 'limp home' feature that would normally allow the driver to get the vehicle safely off the road under reduced engine power.

Investigation into inmate's possible police brutality death

Those who have been accused of committing a misdemeanor or other minor infraction are entitled to humane treatment, regardless of the situation. Unfortunately, there have been many stories of authority overreach that may fit the definition of police brutality. Arizona residents who believe that they have been a victim of this type of behavior are entitled to seek justice.

Recently, a family requested that the district attorney investigate the death of their loved one who was taken into police custody after being accused of criminal trespassing, which is categorized as a misdemeanor. According to the report thus far, once the 32-year-old was placed under arrest, he was taken to the local hospital to be medically cleared for transportation to the local jail. Once there, the story becomes a little less clear.

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