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Butte County Personal Injury Blog

Weather-related traffic accidents bring a flood of grief

With fundraisers and celebrity contributions, it is likely that charities raised millions of dollars to support the victims of the recent natural disasters across the country. You may have joined others in South Dakota who watched news coverage of devastating winds and floods, leaving destruction and death behind. You were probably horrified to hear of the number of people who died in those storms.

Still, the U.S. Department of Transportation says that the number of people who die in an average year from weather-related traffic accidents is greater than the number of annual deaths from all the tornadoes, floods and hurricanes combined.

Traumatic amputation can leave you with considerable pain

You likely understand that anyone could be involved in a life-changing accident at any time. You may have felt as if your life was heading in a positive direction and that you had the abilities to participate in activities that made your life feel worthwhile when a serious incident resulted in your suffering a catastrophic injury, such as losing a limb. This type of outcome can occur after a severe car accident, and you may not know how to move forward.

Unfortunately, amputation during a car accident or needed amputation as a result of the incident can leave you feeling devastated. Not only have you suffered a serious physical trauma, but this type of event could also leave lasting psychological effects as well.

The rights of railroad workers under FELA

Working in the railroad industry can be stressful and high-risk for employees. While it is an inherently dangerous job, certain federal laws guarantee protections and rights to these workers. If you work on America's railroads, it would benefit you to know and understand your rights under the Federal Employers Liability Act.

This law clearly establishes your rights as an employee in this industry, including your rights in case you suffer an injury on the job. If you were hurt or believe that your employer violated the terms of FELA in some way, you have a right to compensation and care needed to recover from your injuries.

The serious nature of burn injuries

According to the Centers for Disease Control, close to a million burn injuries occur in the United States each year that are severe enough to require medical attention. Hospitalization is required in approximately 50,000 cases, and 20,000 of burn cases involve burns that cover a quarter of the body's surface or more. More than 4,000 die from these burns, and as many as 10,000 die due to related infections.

The Impact of Spinal Cord Injuries

One spinal cord injury changes many lives forever. According to the American Association of Neurological Surgeons, approximately 11,000 people suffer spinal cord injuries in the United States annually. The majority of spinal cord injury victims are young men. But that statistic does not include the 11,000 families struggling to share the burden of the potentially life-long aftermath of the traumatic event. The number 11,000 fails to even begin to express the profound physical and emotional loss that can accompany this most devastating of all injuries. The financial cost can be absolutely staggering for any family. When the medical community has exhausted its efforts to restore and rehabilitate, the victim and their family must rely on each other to carry on. But sometimes, if the injury was caused by the carelessness of another, the legal system can offer help.

Help with a Traumatic Brain Injury

Traumatic brain injury, or catastrophic brain injury, affects approximately 1.5 million Americans per year, according to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC). CDC also estimates that about 5.3 million U.S. citizens - about 2 percent of the population - live with issues related to traumatic brain injury (TBI). TBI is not necessarily a killer, though about 50,000 people die every year from TBI. Yearly, 80,000 to 90,000 people suffer from a long-term disability because of TBI.

Fatalities in Motor Vehicle Accidents

Statistics often have little meaning and are quickly forgotten. But statistics about fatal auto accidents should be different. Those statistics should be alarming to all of us. Those statistics aren't just numbers; they are people - friends, family members and people we've never met.

Dealing with a Catastrophic Auto Accident

A bad car accident can change your life. But a catastrophic auto accident can injure a victim so severely they may never work again or recover sufficiently to live normally. The victim's world - and their family's world - has been turned upside down. If the other driver was at fault, you may be entitled to receive compensation for your harms and losses. Contacting a personal injury lawyer is crucial to protect your rights.

Reducing Catastrophic Injuries in South Dakota

South Dakota is a wonderful state with so many positives for locals and visitors. There is, however, a negative we should address. In the decade from 2003-2012, 537 people lost their lives in car crashes involving drunk drivers in this state. South Dakota's drunk driving death toll was almost double the national average during that time. (National average: 3.3 deaths per year per 100,000 population; South Dakota: 5.7 deaths per year per 100,000 population.) These are unacceptable statistics.

In 2010, 5,801 people were injured on South Dakota highways. Another 5,374 injuries were inflicted in car crashes in 2011. The economic loss from motor vehicle accidents was $379 Million in 2010 and $345 Million in 2011; those losses do not include the cost of treating injuries, rehabilitation, or the human cost of living with a catastrophic injury. These are unacceptable statistics too.

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