Posts by Robin

The Law Behind Dog Bites

»Posted by on May 8, 2019 in Pets | 0 comments

One of the most divisive questions out there is “are you a dog person or a cat person?” A wrong answer can quickly end a first date or ruin a family reunion. Thankfully, most people tend to go one way or another, and there are even a few who love both! However, just because someone likes dogs does not mean that dogs like them back.

Dogs have two main ways they like to bite: the hard bite and the soft bite. If you’ve ever played with a puppy who wasn’t fully housebroken or been around a dog who just really wanted attention, then you’ve likely experienced the latter. The soft bite is a type of gentle physical contact dogs use to communicate. Think of it as a dog’s attempt to hold your hand or tap you on the shoulder. Most soft bites are playful and not harmful. If a dog senses danger, though, they might use a hard bite as a way to defend themselves. A hard dog bite can break the skin and potentially transmit rabies or other diseases. Dog bites happen over four million times a year in the U.S. alone! Some breeds have more occurrences of attacking humans, but a lot of this is due to breed stereotypes and humans acting more aggressively with breeds they assume are more dangerous.

A dog may lash out and bite a human at any time. Generally speaking, a dog raised in a caring environment with ample socialization isn’t going to hurt you unless there’s a good reason like they believe that they or their owner is in danger. If the dog does bite or attack you for any reason, there are a few cases in which the owner will be liable for the damages. There are three main ways to prove that the victim was, in fact, the victim of an attack. If the injured party was in a public place or lawfully in a private place, if they didn’t provoke the dog, and if the dog is the cause of the injury, there’s a strong case to be made for owner liability. If the owner is found to be liable for the attack, they will likely be ordered to pay for medical bills and other expenses on behalf of the injured. There are a lot of gray areas in this area, namely how one can prove that the animal was unprovoked.

The owner might try and argue that the victim was provoking the dog by whistling at it, or kneeling down to pet it. If the attack occurs somewhere without security cameras or other witnesses it can get confusing really quickly. Many lawyers practice this area well and are able to prove that the victim wasn’t acting maliciously. Places like Hammack Law Firm specialize in dog bites and animal attacks so that victims of these crimes can get justice for what has happened.

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Where to Drive Golf Carts

»Posted by on Dec 26, 2018 in Personal Injury | 0 comments

Most of us are pretty relaxed about the idea of driving a golf cart. How hard can it really be, right? However, there is more involved in safely operating a cart than just avoiding the lake. Today, golf carts have many uses outside of just the golf course. Check out some tips on driving safely as you move beyond the golf cart paths and sand bunkers.

Where Can I Operate a Golf Cart?

1.The Road
You’re not likely to spot a golf cart on your morning drive down the highway, but some states have made golf carts legal on non-highway roads. It is now legal to drive a golf cart on roads less than 25 mph in California. Street cart driving is legal in Minnesota based on local government decisions. It is important to keep in mind that liability may change as you leave certain areas. If you’re using a country club’s golf cart, they may not be responsible for accidents that happen on the street.

2. Outdoor Trails
In several states, such as Georgia and Texas, it is legal to operate a cart on recreational and park trails. This means you can travel alongside bikers, joggers, rollerbladers, and dog walkers.

3. Personal Property
Carts are an affordable alternative to ATVs or trucks if you’re looking to get some light towing or construction done on your property or workspace.

4. College Campus
You can’t ride a golf cart around campus the same way you ride a bike around, but golf carts are becoming more and more acceptable for work-related use as well as transportation for injured and disabled students.

5. Retirement Communities
Golf cart use is expanding rapidly in retirement communities due to the ease of access they provide. These carts can provide a new level of mobility to those who would otherwise not have it.

How to Drive a Golf Cart Safely

It doesn’t matter if you’re driving the streets, the golf course, or through campus, applying these quick tips reduces the risk of injury while in a cart.

1. Turn Slowly
Turning at 11 mph creates enough force to throw someone out of the vehicle. Golf carts do not have doors to hold in passengers like cars and trucks do. To keep everyone tucked safely in the vehicle, brake before turning and turn the wheel at a slow, steady rate.

2. Honk at Intersections
Many drivers are not expecting to see a golf cart on the road, and people have a hard time avoiding what they don’t expect. Give the horn a beep when arriving at an intersection to alert other drivers and pedestrians to your presence.

3. Steer Clear of Sidewalks
Many sidewalks are not built with the turn radius and gradient to accommodate the needs of a golf cart driver. It is often safer to drive on a trail or road than a sidewalk made for walkers.

Injured in a Golf Cart Accident?

There are many different issues related to liability in the case of a golf cart accident. While researching on my own, I came across a post from South Carolina golf cart accident liability lawyers Evans Moore Law, which I found to be very helpful.

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How to Avoid Injuries in the Workplace

»Posted by on Feb 11, 2018 in Functional Employment | 0 comments

Having a safe working environment is vital for any employer. Not just because they want to avoid lawsuits, but because they also genuinely care about the health and safety of all their employees. When someone gets hurt or severely injured on the job, it’s a headache for everyone involved. Employers begin to double and triple check everything in the workplace to make sure it will never happen again, while employees lose confidence in their safety, making them less productive and unhappy in their workplace. When employees are unhappy this can lead to a high turn over rate, which can directly affect the ability of the company to operate in an efficient manner. Luckily, there is a viable solution to these issues in the form of WorkSTEPS, a company helping ensure the safety of employees and employers alike.  

WorkSTEPS has found a solution to help both employers and employees avoid these dangerous workplace accidents that everyone loathes. WorkSTEPS does this by doing pre-employment screening for new hires to make sure they’re in the proper physical condition for their line of work. They establish a baseline medical test which all new employees must pass to join the workforce. Meeting these requirements lowers the risk of injury significantly, saving both the employer and more importantly the employee, the struggle of dealing with injuries in the workplace. The medical baseline is established by finding out how demanding a particular job is and making sure new hires can perform required tasks consistently without the risk of harm to themselves or others. Those who pass these tests are significantly less likely to injure themselves in the workplace.

More often than not, workplace accidents are caused due to the physical unpreparedness of employees. When new hires use WorkSTEPS and pass the medical baseline test, workplace accidents related to back injuries decline by 84 percent at some businesses. WorkSTEPS often brings workplace injuries down by 50 percent in the first year alone and continues to lower them each year after. Back injuries at one company went from around 46 per year to about 5 per year. This change is enormous, both for employers and employees, and it saves them both pain and money, as well as allowing for a more productive workforce. When employees are healthy, and up to the job, injuries drop dramatically and makes it so that accidents in the workplace are almost nonexistent.

As time goes on, WorkSTEPS has focused less on performing these medical baseline tests, and more on finding out what the baseline for different jobs is. This helps employees avoid injury and aids employers in preventing injury claims on the job. Their continued work in this area allows for the high success rate we’ve seen WorkSTEPS have for employers in the past and looks to increase them even further in the future.

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Do I Have All I Need for the Big Move?

»Posted by on Nov 15, 2017 in Self Storage Tips | 0 comments

Moving is a pretty big deal. I’ve done it three times in my life (twice just across one town), and I still find myself getting frazzled over the whole process. I always have this feeling that I’m forgetting something like some treasured object is hiding somewhere just out of sight. Did I check that cupboard or did I just assume it was empty? Maybe I’ve left some long forgotten but very dear object there, and I’ll only miss it years from now when it’s too late.

Then there are issues of organization. Should I put the utensils with the pots and pans or with the plates? That may seem silly but when you get down to things like old, important notes or journals, i.e. old documents that were once and may somehow in the future be important, it becomes harder. You want to make sure you take them, and they get packed somewhere where you can find them, but where is the best spot?

I haven’t even gotten started here. I worry about all my breakables. Should I pack them together or wrap them up separately and divvy them up between the other boxes? Together, you can prioritize the box to try to protect it, but together they may also all break at once if something happens.

As you can see, this is a stressful business for me, and this kind of mania really slows down my packing. So, to try to make this a little easier on myself this time, I’m trying to organize everything before I even start moving.

That has meant making a huge list of everything I can think of that I’m taking. I don’t mean I exhaustively cataloged all of my possessions, but I did put everything into categories. I have the dishes category, for instance, and I break that down into breakable and unbreakable. Things like that.

I’m also trying to get a grip on what I need in order to actually pack.

One final thing I’m trying. I’m opening every closet and every cupboard now and searching every shelf to make sure I know everything that is on each one. So far, no family heirlooms I had completely forgotten about but the loss of which would one day haunt me. Here’s hoping, if they exist, I find them in one of the last couple of drawers I haven’t checked yet.

My hope is that with a little more systematic thinking beforehand, I’ll be able to avoid getting too stressed when the time comes to actually pack up and move.

I’d like this move to go smoothly. It’s my first move out of the state, which makes it all the more important I don’t have any nagging feeling that I left something behind.

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Dog Bites and their Unfortunate Bias towards Younger Children

»Posted by on Sep 16, 2017 in Pets | 0 comments

Any owner who owns a dog doesn’t want to think that their dog would ever bite someone let alone a young child. It is a tragic statistic that a disproportionate amount of dog bites occur to children left alone with the animal. There are a number of reasons for this like children don’t understand what a dog would take as a threat or to not bother an animal when they are eating. However, the paramount problem is that the owners of these dogs are not taking steps to keep them out of the reach of small children.

In 2016 there were 48 dog bite incidents in Detroit alone. Beyond a few campaigns by the USPS and animal control to encourage owners to control their pets better there hasn’t been much change. In May of 2017 local news network, WGN9 reported about a 3-week old infant who was killed by the family dog. Apparently, after leaving the child alone for about five minutes the caretaker in charge of the kid found her bleeding from a serious head injury and one of the family dogs with blood staining its jaws. The real heartbreaking thing about this story is that the dog probably did not mean the child any harm. At that young of an age, the skull has not formed yet so while the dog was trying to play with the child it could have treated the baby as a fellow dog. The takeaway is that the responsibility for these types of attacks isn’t on the dog or baby but on the owner who knows the fragility of the baby and strength of the dogs and still allows the two to be left alone in the same room. According to the personal injury lawyers at Ravid & Associates, P.C. around 360,000 children were bitten by dogs between 2010 and 2012. The worst part is that these types of attacks are easily preventable. Some basic tips to avoid these include the aforementioned never leave young children alone with dogs, teach older children not to pet dogs they don’t know, and if you feel threatened by a dog, back away slowly and don’t make any loud noises.

Unfortunately, there are many stories just like this one every year. Dogs and children should always be supervised together until a child is old enough to learn proper safety techniques when interacting with animals. Most dogs are good however even good dogs can have bad days and lash out at those who can’t defend themselves. As humans, we will never fully understand their behavior, but we can take all the necessary precautions to protect our youth. 

Nobody wants to see their family dog injure or in the worst scenarios kill someone. When it comes to dogs, they have very little instinct and learn much of their behavior from their owners and neighborhood dogs. By properly training them and limiting their exposure to dangerous dogs and young children, theses kinds of horrific attacks can be prevented.

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