Construction cranes of high-rise residential buildings in the big city, view of the evening sky

Crane Accidents and Construction Injuries

Crane Accidents and Construction Injuries 1 Premises Liability South Florida Injury Law Firm

 

Imagine sleeping soundly in bed and then a loud crashing crane comes through your roof.
It was a scene that happened this week in North Miami Beach, where a crane that was being used to repair a seawall slid off a barge and struck the roof of a condominium building.

“I was very lucky because that crane was in front of my apartment two days ago.” said by C. Spetsiotas, a resident of the condo.

 

Eight units of the building are now off-limits while structural engineers assess the safety of the building. The U.S. Coast Guard is also investigating, along with OSHA

Crane accidents have happened in the past, with unfortunately worse outcomes. In Hallandale Beach, a 27 year old was killed when a crane toppled over.  One man died and two others were left injured in Hollywood when the scaffolding collapsed.

 

Causes of Construction Accidents


 

Florida construction sites are littered with hazards at every turn. To execute dangerous tasks that these projects require, heavy construction equipment and tools are used, many of which are performed at great heights and under extremely hazardous conditions.

Although federal and state laws that require employers to maintain a safe workplace, some do not. There are instances where contractors take shortcuts to turnaround projects faster and reduce expenses, posing a risk to people who work on the sites and the local pedestrians.

 

Some common causes of construction accidents include:

 

  • Cranes, ladders and fixtures falling from buildings and walls
  • Toxic substance exposure
  • Defective construction and tool equipment
  • Improper use of equipment
  • Improper or insufficient training
  • Misuse of tools and other equipment
  • Poor safety precautions and oversight

 

 

Construction Site Safety and Your Rights


Crane Accidents and Construction Injuries 3 Premises Liability South Florida Injury Law Firm

Safety measures on construction sites are supposed to be followed by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) standards.  There are clear standards for cranes, crane operations, crane training, fall protection, scaffolding, ladders, hazard communication, machinery, and many other aspects of a construction site project and operations. A party’s failure to abide by OSHA standards may be evidence of negligence if that failure caused an accident.

If you or someone you know have suffered any construction related injuries, or others that are not listed, compensation may be awarded and should contact our experienced Florida construction accident lawyers at South Florida Injury Law Firm today to discuss your legal options with our Free Case Review

Also, you may be entitled to recover more money than a workers’ compensation claim alone could provide. You may also have claims for medical bills, pain and suffering, permanent limitations and past and future lost earnings.

Because of the numerous contractors, subcontractors and other parties often involved in construction sites, it can be difficult to determine exactly who should be held responsible for your injuries or the death of a loved one.

 

 

 

Types of Available Compensation


 

Workers’ Compensation
Almost every employer is required to carry workers’ compensation insurance. These benefits can help an injured worker cover medical expenses and lost wages and are available to a worker regardless of the circumstances surrounding an accident that causes injury.

 

Personal Injury
Although a worker cannot file an injury lawsuit against their employer, it may be possible to file a claim against a third party whose negligent actions led to your injury. A personal injury claim is also available to non-workers who are injured on a construction site.

 

Product Liability
If a defective product caused your injuries, it may be possible to bring a claim against the manufacturer, retailer or wholesaler of that product.

 

Wrongful Death
If you have lost a loved one in a construction accident, you may be entitled to file a wrongful death lawsuit seeking compensation for your loss.

 

 

Construction Related Accident and Injury Help


 

With decades of experience handling these types of complex cases, our South Florida Injury Law Firm construction accident lawyers have the skills and the resources needed to conduct a thorough investigation. You can rely on us to put your interests first and will work to help you recover the maximum compensation you are entitled.

 

Schedule a free consultation by calling (954) 488-JEFF (Fort Lauderdale), (954) 488-JEFF (Boca Raton & West Palm Beach), or 877-566-8759 (toll-free). You can also fill out this online form to set up your case evaluation. We’re a dedicated team of personal injury lawyers who work on a contingency basis and will take your calls at any time, on any day of the week.

You Fell and Got Hurt at a Club on New Year's – Can You Sue in Florida?

You Fell and Got Hurt at a Club on New Year’s – Can You Sue in Florida?

You Fell and Got Hurt at a Club on New Year's – Can You Sue in Florida?

For many people, the last night of the year is the most fun. You dress up, get together with all of your friends, have some booze, hit the clubs, and ring in the new year.

What happens when your New Year’s Eve isn’t so fun, though?

We’re not just talking about hangovers. Sticky floors, spilled drinks, and low lights can be a recipe for disaster. If you slipped and fell at a club while celebrating New Year’s this holiday, you may be facing more than just a headache at the beginning of 2019.

Slip and fall cases are some of the most common premise liability cases in the field of personal injury law. How do the rules of slip and fall lawsuits apply to accidents that occur in nightclubs and other places that pose greater risks? Let’s explore.

Florida Slip and Fall Lawsuits: The Basics

Before we talk about nightclubs specifically, let’s zoom out. What does a Floridian need to file a lawsuit against any property where they slipped and fell?

Duty: Property owners owe a certain duty to keep visitors or patrons safe. Mall owners have a duty to maintain the walkways, parking lots, stairwells, and so on. Grocery stores and restaurants need to make sure spills are cleaned up quickly.

Breach of Duty: The next step is to prove that the defendant neglected to fulfill their duties. In many slip and fall cases, the defendant saw a hazard (a spilled drink, uneven floors) and simply ignored it. This hazard created an unsafe environment for patrons.

Injury: In order for the plaintiff to win their case, they will have to prove that the breach of duty (and therefore, the defendant’s neglect) is what caused their injury. In other words, you would need to show that your slip and fall due to the wet floor resulted in your injuries rather than them coming from somewhere else.

 

South Florida Slip and Fall Lawyer

Damages: It’s not enough to get injured. You also need to be able to prove that your injuries resulted in financial losses for you, or damages. For example, you can receive compensation for medical bills and loss of income if you are able to show that they were due to the injury.

How Slip and Fall Injuries Work in a Florida Nightclub

In broad daylight, it’s easy for employees or property owners to recognize a hazard and take appropriate action. In a dark, crowded nightclub, though, how are staff able to recognize every time a drink spills and rush to clean it up?

Florida courts take into consideration the fact that property owners and employees have a duty to their patrons within reason. It is probably unreasonable to argue that a nightclub owner should clean up every spill throughout the night within moments of them occurring. However, it should be reasonable for nightclub owners to enforce rules that prevent slip and fall hazards.

This is what happened in Feris v. Club Country of Fort Walton Beach. In this case, a patron filed a lawsuit after they slipped and fell on the dance floor. The defendant won the case “because there was circumstantial evidence of “active” negligence by employees of the premises (i.e., not enforcing the rule against allowing drinks on the dance floor), a recurrence of spills on the dance floor, and the existence of liquid on the floor for a sufficient amount of time.”

In plain English, the club had a rule that patrons could not bring drinks on the dance floor. This rule was put in place to keep patrons from slipping, falling, and hurting themselves. However, negligence occurred when the staff saw patrons breaking the rules and did nothing about it. By ignoring those rules, the employees put patrons at risk and breached their duty to keep everyone safe.

This is not the only case when victims can sue for negligence. If, for example, you fell down a flight of broken stairs at a club, you would likely be able to file a lawsuit. Likewise, if the club failed to warn patrons that the floor would be sticky after a “foam party,” you might be able to file a lawsuit.

What to Do If You Want to Win Your Florida Slip and Fall Lawsuit

Now that you know you can sue, the question becomes: what next?

Likely you will want the experience and knowledge of a good Florida personal injury lawyer. Before you even contact them, though, there are things you can and should do.

Boca Raton Slip and Fall Injury Attorney

Make sure you seek medical attention for your injuries as soon as possible. Collect as much information as you can about the night and the specifics of the situation. Seek out witnesses and other evidence (maybe someone took a video on their smartphone).

The more you can prove, the likely you are to win your case and get yourself the compensation you need and deserve.

 

 

About the Author:

Jeffrey Braxton is a trial lawyer in Fort Lauderdale who has devoted his career to the practice of personal injury law. As lead trial attorney for the South Florida Injury Law Firm, Jeff has litigated thousands of cases and is a member of the Million Dollar Advocates Forum, an exclusive group of attorneys who have resolved cases in excess of one million dollars.

Florida Woman Loses Slip and Fall Case – What You Need to Prove

Florida Woman Loses Slip and Fall Case – What You Need to Prove

Florida Woman Loses Slip and Fall Case – What You Need to Prove

People slip and fall every day, but they don’t necessarily think they have a lawsuit on their hands.

 

Delores Arp of Palm Beach County, however, absolutely believed she had a valid slip and fall lawsuit when she tripped on a loose paver stone at Waterway East Association, Inc. Arp was walking back to her house, and she used W.E.’s shopping area property as a shortcut – a cut-through many people had used before.

 

W.E. affirmed that Arp was not a customer at the shopping area, and that they therefore did not owe her any duty of care. Moreover, they argued that they weren’t responsible for maintaining that particular area of the walkway.

 

Arp said she was an “implied invitee,” but the courts disagrees. They said an invitee “has an objectively reasonable belief that he or she has been invited or is otherwise welcome on that portion of the real property where injury occurs.”

 

In fact, the court stated that Arp was actually an uninvited licensee, which means she came to the property “solely for (his or her) own convenience without invitation either expressed or reasonably implied under the circumstances.”

 

Basically, because Arp was not on the property to visit the stores, but rather just using the property as a walk through, W.E. had not duty to keep her safe. These types of details are important to slip and fall suits, and Arp’s case highlights what you need to prove to have a valid slip and fall claim.

 

Let’s review the necessary elements of a valid slip and fall.

 

Understanding Florida Slip and Fall Cases

 

Slip and fall cases cover various accidents that can possibly occur on someone else’s property. You might slip on a wet floor in a grocery store, stumble down a poorly lit staircase in an office building, or fall in a number of other ways. These types of accidents aren’t usually serious – just a few cuts and bruises – but a more serious slip and fall could result in severe injury and hefty medical bills.

 

If you were involved in a slip and fall accident, there are a number of important things to know. The statute of limitations in Florida is four years from the date of injury. That means that after four years you won’t be able to file a suit. So it’s important to handle your case in a timely manner.

 

Beyond this, slip and fall cases come down to the details. You need to prove three things to the Florida courts:

 

Boca Raton Slip and Fall Lawyer

  1. The property owner owes a “duty of care” to you. If you are invited onto the property, the property has to be safe. Being invited doesn’t require a formal invitation, though. Simply being open for business means that a company is inviting you to come in and shop.
  2. The property owner didn’t use “reasonable care” to safely maintain the property. Depending on the circumstances, the court has the ability to decide what “reasonable” means to each particular case.
  3. Due to the property owner’s negligence of reasonable care, you were injured.

 

If you or a loved one have been invited to someone else’s property and were injured in a slip and fall accident, reach out to an experienced Florida personal injury attorney to see if you might be entitled to compensation.

 

 

About the Author:

Jeffrey Braxton is a trial lawyer in Fort Lauderdale who has devoted his career to the practice of personal injury law. As lead trial attorney for The South Florida Injury Law Firm, Jeff has litigated thousands of cases and is a member of the Million Dollar Advocates Forum, an exclusive group of attorneys who have resolved cases in excess of one million dollars.

What Are Your Rights As a Tenant in Florida

What Are Your Rights As a Tenant in Florida?

What Are Your Rights As a Tenant in Florida

Living in an apartment complex or leased property definitely has its perks: no mortgage payments, you don’t have the commitment of living there forever, and loans aren’t necessary to put down a security deposit. Most apartments also offer free maintenance. You put in a request, and (for the most part) someone arrives to install your light bulbs, change your filters, and so on.

 

We say “for the most part” because not every apartment complex is perfect. Landlords may be slow at answering your calls and requests, or may not put a satisfying amount of effort into maintaining the area where you live.

 

If the problems around your apartment get really bad, your landlord or property manager may be guilty of more than just being bad at their job – they may be violating your rights as a tenant.

 

What Duties Does Florida Give to Landlords?

 

What Duties Does Florida Give to Landlords

 

As the owner of a space where you are living, landlords and property managers have specific duties laid out by Florida law. When these duties are not completed, you may have a lawsuit on your hand. It is completely within your rights to hold your property managers responsible for completing the following duties:

 

Disclose Information About Management: Your money is in the hands of a landlord or a property management company, so you deserve to know who is handling your rent and repairs. A landlord cannot refuse to give out information about management staff who are processing your rent or holding your security deposit.

 

Return Your Security Deposit: Florida requires landlords to return a tenant’s security deposit within one month of the tenant moving out. If money from the security deposit needs to go to damages made by the tenant, the landlord must let the tenant know about these costs when they return the partial security deposit.

 

Protect Tenants from Reasonably Foreseeable Criminal Conduct: If you’ve ever received a letter or notification from your landlord about car thefts or other crime in the area, the action is more than just a good-natured warning to tenants. Sending these letters and giving tenants advice and opportunities to protect themselves from crime is a way to take liability off of a landlord should these crimes occur again.

 

Being the victim of a crime like robbery or criminal mischief may cost you money, but if you try and take your landlord to court over the crime, the burden of proof is on you. How can you prove to a court that your landlord was negligent in providing security and safety to the area around your apartment? There are ways, but they are not always easy.

 

Check Security Measures: This responsibility goes hand-in-hand with the one above it. Florida housing regulations often require landlords to install security measures on each unit: locks, fences, peepholes, and so on. If your landlord fails to meet these requirements, you may be able to hold them accountable for crimes like burglary.

 

Landlords also have the duty of finding and reporting potential security breaches, but it’s best if tenants report these breaches to landlords. The sooner you can get a broken window or a lock fixed, the lower the risk of being the victim of a burglary.

 

Keep Properties Up to Code: Housing regulations also include electrical, plumbing, or other structural requirements that keep tenants safe and a building secure. This is where general repairs come in. For example, if the parking lot of your apartment complex develops a large pothole and isn’t repaired by landlords in a timely manner, a tenant who slips and falls in that pothole would be able to file a claim for their injuries.

 

What Additional Rights Do Tenants Have?

 

Landlords may not always live up to their responsibilities, so it’s crucial to hold them accountable for their actions. If your landlord is continuing to fail in fulfilling their duties, you can take the following actions:

 

Withhold Rent: If the above duties aren’t completed in a reasonable amount of time, Florida gives tenants the right to withhold rent.

 

Boca Raton Premises Liability Lawyer

Make Requests/Complaints Without Retaliation: You should not be afraid to speak up about your living conditions or repairs that need to be made around the property. Florida law prohibits landlords from retaliating after a complaint. Examples of retaliation include decreasing services (barring you from the complex pool or gym), increasing the rent, or filing a lawsuit against you.

 

What Can You Do to Protect Yourself?

 

Before you sign a lease, talk to your landlord about renters’ insurance. Some apartment complexes will offer a plan that is tacked onto your rent, but you may also get a separate plan through your insurance or a third-party insurer.

 

Renters’ insurance can cover damages from accidents like fire or flooding, or the loss of property from an incident like theft on the property. If you do not have renters’ insurance, or your insurance doesn’t cover the negligence of your landlord, it may be time to take your claim to small claims court.

 

Want to know more about filing a lawsuit against a negligent landlord? Contact a Florida personal injury lawyer.

 

About the Author:

Jeffrey Braxton is a trial lawyer in Fort Lauderdale who has devoted his 22-year career to the practice of personal injury law. As lead trial attorney for The South Florida Injury Law Firm, Jeff has litigated thousands of cases and is a member of the Million Dollar Advocates Forum, an exclusive group of attorneys who have resolved cases in excess of one million dollars.

How Zoos Train Staff to Keep Guests Safe

How Zoos Train Staff to Keep Guests Safe

How Zoos Train Staff to Keep Guests Safe

Many zookeepers and zoo visitors are still shaken by the death of Harambe, a 17-year old, 440-pound gorilla who lived at the Cincinnati Zoo.

 

In May, Harambe was shot and killed after a 3-year-old boy climbed into the gorilla’s enclosure. The boy had a close encounter with Harambe for over 10 minutes before zoo staff decided he was in danger and Harambe needed to be shot.

 

The incident sparked a lot of debate among animal rights activists, parents, and zoo patrons alike. Whether or not you believe the gorilla should have been killed, one element of the incident certainly raised questions: Who actually killed the gorilla?

 

Emergency Response Squad

 

Most people believe that a police officer pulled the trigger to kill Harambe. But in reality, a member of the zoo’s specially trained emergency team was the person who was called to shoot Harambe.

 

These staff members attend training at firing ranges, learn how to load and unload firearms quickly, and take annual marksmanship tests. Every zoo manages its emergency response teams differently: some teams consist of general zoo staff, while other zoos have their own group of staff dedicated entirely to emergency situations like the one we saw in Cincinnati.

 

Members of these types of response teams are not trained to kill animals unless a human life is in danger, and even then, they are trained to tranquilize the animal first. If the danger is so imminent that a fast-acting tranquilizer will not prevent the animal from hurting someone, like in the case of Harambe, then the team member will be directed to shoot the animal.

 

Premise Liability and Zoos

 

Premise Liability Lawyers

Zoos are not required to have dangerous animal response teams like the one in Cincinnati, but they do have a duty to keep their staff and guests safe. And if someone gets hurt on zoo property, they are subject to premise liability lawsuits.

 

We’ve talked in previous posts about premise liability at summer camps or waterparks. Well, this rule applies to zoos, too. Premise liability is an important area of the law to know if you own any sort of business, residence, or property that people visit.

 

As the owner of that property, you have a duty of care for your guests. This means that any hazards need to be promptly taken care of and/or people must be warned. If you neglect this responsibility and it results in personal injury, you may find yourself at the center of a lawsuit.

 

How does this apply to the Harambe situation described above? If a zoo does not have an emergency squad and a close animal encounter results in a child’s death, they could be sued for millions of dollars. Emergency squads are put in place not just to save lives, but to save zoos a whole lot of legal trouble.

 

Florida Wildlife Laws

 

We wrote last week about the wild alligator that killed a 2-year old boy at Disney World, and what that might mean for the park legally. If Harambe had killed the boy that climbed into his enclosure, Cincinnati would be facing a different kind of lawsuit. Here’s why.

 

It is important to remember that zoos own, train, and care for these animals, and are therefore responsible for their behavior. Florida, a state that is no stranger to lawsuits involving animal attacks, has specific laws regarding the responsibilities of premises with wild animals. As we mentioned, property owners do not have to anticipate the presence of wild animals unless the owner owns or has introduced that animal to the property.

 

Disney did not own the alligator that killed the 2-year old boy. But the Cincinnati Zoo does own Harambe. Therefore, Cincinnati is legally responsible for the actions of the gorilla.

 

Should You File a Personal Injury Lawsuit?

 

If you are injured on someone else’s property due to unsafe conditions created by their negligence, you may be able to file a lawsuit to recover the damages or losses that resulted from your accident. This is no small thing. Paying for medical bills and money lost due to an inability to work can empty savings accounts and take years to recover from.

 

Not sure if you have a case? Contact an experienced Florida premises liability lawyer today.

 

 

Alligators in Your Swimming Pool - It's No Joke

Alligators in Your Swimming Pool? It’s No Joke

Alligators in Your Swimming Pool - It's No Joke

Among all of the tragedies that Orlando and the state of Florida have faced recently, one of the most heartbreaking involved a 2-year old boy playing at Walt Disney World.

 

Lane Graves, 2, of Nebraska, was playing in the water outside of Disney’s Grand Floridian Spa and Resort when he was quickly snatched by an alligator and dragged into the water. His body was found a day later.

 

It’s not unusual to spot an alligator around the grounds of Walt Disney World. The amusement park was essentially built on a swamp, and covers 40 square miles of land. But not every visitor is aware of the presence of alligators. The area where Lane Graves was playing simply had a “No Swimming” sign and no warning of dangerous animals.

 

Your Pool Could Hide an Alligator, Too

 

It may be unsettling to think of alligators invading our favorite theme parks, but it’s downright terrifying to think of alligators appearing in our backyards and swimming pools. Unfortunately, the growing population of both people and alligators has caused some overlap in where we want to relax and swim. Sending your child off to a swimming pool or beach area in Florida may put them at risk of an alligator or other wildlife-related accident.

 

That being said, keep in mind that the death of Lane Graves was the first fatal alligator attack in Florida since 2007. In short, alligator attacks are rare. There are typically around a dozen bites recorded each year. But even though wildlife accidents of this type are not common, they are traumatic, and can bring a lot of stress and financial hardship upon your family.

 

So what happens if your child is attacked by an animal on someone else’s property? Can you sue for damages? Will you win your lawsuit?

 

Negligence and Premise Liability

 

Let’s remove the wildlife factor and talk briefly about premise liability. If you are injured on a piece of property owned by someone else, you may be able to file a premise liability lawsuit against that person or company.

 

Negligence and Premise Liability

 

Property owners have the duty of both maintaining their property so that it is safe for visitors, and also warning visitors of potential dangers that are known by the owner but unknown to the visitor. If the property owners have neglected those duties, they can be found guilty of negligence. To win your lawsuit, you will have to prove that the defendant’s negligence caused your accident.

 

For example, if your child suffered a swimming pool accident at a neighbor’s house because of improper security or fencing, you could file a lawsuit. If you make a compelling case that the improper security caused your child’s accident, you might win the lawsuit and receive compensation.

 

Suing Over Wildlife Accidents in Florida

 

So it sounds like the Graves family has options when it comes to pursuing legal action against the theme park, right? Failure to communicate the imminent danger of wildlife that typically roams the property could be considered negligence or even gross negligence. Disney owns the Grand Floridian and the surrounding beaches, so they should take responsibility for warning patrons, staff, and guests of the dangers presented by that wildlife.

 

However…

 

Florida is no stranger to dangerous wildlife, and laws about the presence of wildlife may affect the Graves family’s lawsuit. Florida law does not require property owners to anticipate or warn visitors about the presence of wildlife unless the owner owns or has introduced the wildlife onto their property.

 

Suing Over Wildlife Accidents in Florida

 

For example, your child is playing at a friend’s house. Your child was unsupervised and unaware that their friend has a ferocious family dog. Your child sees and goes to pet the dog and is bitten. In this situation, you can file a lawsuit because the friend’s family owns the dog and did not warn your child. They are guilty of negligence.

 

On the flip side, if your child is playing at the same friend’s house and a wild bird randomly swoops in and attacks them, you will have a much harder time arguing that the friend’s family is liable for the damages done by the wild bird.

 

When in Doubt, Consult a Personal Injury Lawyer

 

It is important to look at Florida’s laws and procedures regarding every factor that went into an accident or injury. The Graves family will need a lawyer who is experienced in going up against high-profile clients like Disney, and who can effectively prove that negligence was involved in the case of Lane Graves’s accident.

 

If you’re caught in a confusing personal injury case, it is best to consult with a personal injury lawyer who is familiar with premise liability lawsuits in Florida. One simple call or click can get you a free review of your case today.

 

About the Author:

Jeffrey Braxton is a trial lawyer in Fort Lauderdale who has devoted his 22-year career to the practice of personal injury law. As lead trial attorney for The South Florida Injury Law Firm, Jeff has litigated thousands of cases and is a member of the Million Dollar Advocates Forum, an exclusive group of attorneys who have resolved cases in excess of one million dollars.

What Happens If My Child Is Injured at Summer Camp

What Happens If My Child Is Injured at Summer Camp?

 

School is out, but that doesn’t mean your child has to be stuck at home for the summer with no structure and nothing to do. Summer camps are a great way to keep your child active, supervised, and having fun – while also allowing them to branch out. However, summer camps come with a lot of risks you won’t find in a classroom.

 

Activities like swimming, climbing, building campfires, and so on may just be part of summer, but they also present lots of potential dangers. On top of this, there may be a lot of children – so many that counselors can’t watch your child’s every move. Sometimes, injuries happen. And if they do, you and your child may undergo serious emotional trauma and find hospital bills stacking up quickly.

 

If you find yourself in this situation, it is important that you speak with an experienced Florida injury attorney. Why? Because while some summer camp injuries may truly be freak accidents or even the fault of your child, others could – and should – have been prevented by the staff or owners of the camp. And if their negligence resulted in your child getting hurt, you shouldn’t have to pay for their mistake.

 

It’s called premises liability, and it’s the same law that applies if someone falls down hotel stairs because the lightbulbs were out or a rotten balcony bannister causes someone to plummet.

 

What Exactly Is Premises Liability?

 

[clickToTweet tweet=”Premises liability is the idea that the owner of the premises in which u get injured may be at fault for your injury” quote=”Premises liability is the idea that the owner of the premises in which you get injured may be found at fault for your injury.”]

 

This principle is commonly discussed in slip and fall and personal injury lawsuits.

 

Camps have a responsibility of providing a safe, clean space for their attendees to play, sleep, and eat. If, for example, your child suffers an injury from a spill on the kitchen floor, you may be able to file a lawsuit for damages. The staff is responsible for removing, cleaning, or warning attendees about the spill. So if they did not do this, the camp can be held liable for your child’s injury.

 

The Responsibility of Camp Staff

 

Boca Raton Summer Camp Accident Injury Lawyer

Summer camp injuries are most likely to happen during supervised activities. The staff of a summer camp carries a lot of responsibilities, especially at overnight camps or athletic training camps.

 

If your child suffers an injury due to the direct actions of a member of the camp’s staff (abuse, negligence, and so on), the camp may be liable for the staff member’s actions. Many camps perform background checks when hiring staff, because the staff comes in close contact with children. Hiring a staff member without doing a background check is a big mistake, and could cost them big time if the staff member causes a lawsuit.

 

Pay Attention to Liability Waivers

 

Summer camps are no strangers to lawsuits, regarding injuries or not. In 2013, a summer camp was sued for over $600,000… over two campers kissing. No, this is not a joke.

 

Injury lawsuits are just as tiresome for summer camps as they are for you, so they’ve taken their own precautions to prevent them from happening. That’s where liability waivers come in – all the paperwork you signed when you enrolled your child in that camp.

 

Each camp comes with its own risk, but some are riskier than other. For example, you would expect more injuries to happen at football camp than at music camp. Camps with pools or lakes run the risk of children drowning. Outdoor camps run the risk of children getting bitten by ticks or other dangerous creatures. To take proper precautions, camps often have parents sign a liability waiver.

 

The waiver states that based on the camp’s itinerary or space, there is an assumed risk of injury. By signing the waiver, you acknowledge this risk, and that the camp is not responsible for injuries from these risky behaviors. Liability waivers often have clauses that do not allow you to file a lawsuit against the camp in case of injury or illness.

 

These waivers, however, are not ironclad. They don’t protect the camp or staff members if someone under their employ acted in a negligent or reckless manner. “Assumed risk” is one thing – unsafe behavior is another.

 

How You Can Prepare Your Child

Boca Raton Child Accident Attorney

Remember, not every precaution is the responsibility of the camp. If you intend to file a lawsuit for injuries, the defendant will likely try to show that you or your child were guilty of negligence as well. Remember the following tips when you are getting your child ready for summer camp:

 

  • Pack a safety kit for your child. Include appropriate footwear and clothing, a reusable water bottle, a first aid kit, sunscreen, and any allergy medication your child needs.
  • Teach your child how to swim and ride a bike. These are common activities at a summer camp, and if your child comes unprepared, he or she will be at a higher risk for injury.
  • Introduce yourself to camp staff before you drop your child off for their first day. If your child requires medication, go over any special instructions or warnings with camp staff. If your child has allergies or has any disabilities, let staff know.

 

You Can Still File a Lawsuit

 

Remember, an experienced personal injury lawyer will know how to find holes or exceptions in the contract you signed that will let you file a lawsuit or ask for damages. If you believe you deserve compensation for your child’s injuries, you should explore all of your options. Reach out to a Florida personal injury lawyer today for a free consultation and evaluation of your case.

 

About the Author:

Jeffrey Braxton is a trial lawyer in Fort Lauderdale who has devoted his 22-year career to the practice of personal injury law. As lead trial attorney for The South Florida Injury Law Firm, Jeff has litigated thousands of cases and is a member of the Million Dollar Advocates Forum, an exclusive group of attorneys who have resolved cases in excess of one million dollars.

Are Waterparks Safe

Are Waterparks Safe?

Are Waterparks Safe

When it comes to fun in the water, Florida has most other states beat. Not only do we boast some of the country’s most beautiful beaches and lush lakes, we are home to some of the world’s most renowned waterparks.

 

Abounding with towering slides, colorful fountains, and lazy rivers, waterparks can be the perfect place to cool down on a steaming hot summer afternoon. However, like all recreational activities, visiting a waterpark does come with its share of risks and dangers.

 

Fortunately, the vast majority of waterpark accidents and injuries can be avoided for visitors who are informed and prepared. Below, we’ve listed some of the most common examples of waterpark accidents and injuries, along with preventative measures you can take to avoid them.

 

  1. Drownings

Florida sees more drownings among children under the age of five than any other state. Children can drown in minutes in less than two inches of water, so the risk of drowning is present in even the shallowest wading pool. Throw massive waterslides and crowded wave pools into the mix, and the risk of drowning only heightens. To make matters worse, most waterparks are staffed by teens who are unqualified to supervise children or save lives.

 

What you can do: Always watch children closely—a good rule of thumb is to keep them in arm’s length of you at all times. Even if there are lifeguards or ride attendants present, remember that these personnel are responsible for the care of hundreds of patrons, and may not be able to take notice or act quick enough to prevent a tragedy.

 

  1. Slip and falls

In a venue where splashing, spraying, and giant cannonballs are encouraged, you can be certain that the floors are going to get a little slippery. Slipping and falling can be particularly dangerous in a waterpark, where floors are often hard concrete or tile. The risk of slip and fall accidents only increase when negligent staff fail to clean up splashes in a timely manner.

 

What you can do: Encourage your kids to walk slowly and carefully, while teaching them never to run under any circumstances. If you spot any dangerous spills or splashes, alert a staff member immediately.

 

  1. Sunburn

You may be well aware of the importance of applying sunscreen before prolonged sun exposure. But what you may not have considered is the importance of wearing sunscreen even while visiting an indoor waterpark. Indoor waterparks often have roofs designed to allow sunshine in, which can result in unexpected and painful burns.

 

Boca Raton Premises Liability Lawyer

What you can do: Whether you are visiting an indoor or outdoor waterpark, you should apply sunscreen to yourself and your children at least 15 minutes before entering the water. You should continue to reapply sunscreen every three to four hours.

 

  1. Waterborne Illness

Recent outbreaks of waterborne illnesses at waterparks have raised some concerns about the safety of these venues. Cryptosporidium, E.coli, and giardia often lurk in the deceptively blue pools and attractions at waterparks, causing unwanted symptoms such as diarrhea and vomiting.

 

What you can do: Discourage your children from swallowing the water or exposing their buttocks to the spray of water, since this can make them more vulnerable to germs and illnesses. Always shower or bathe before going in the water to help control the spread of illness yourself.

 

While you can work to prevent waterpark accidents among you and your children, you cannot eliminate the risk of harm if waterpark management or staff are negligent, or if attractions are not properly constructed, maintained, and inspected. If you, a family member, or someone you care about has been injured at a waterpark due to the negligence of another, contact a top Florida personal injury attorney.  Your attorney can help you hold the guilty party accountable for their actions, and secure compensation for medical bills, recovery costs, and overall pain and suffering.

 

About the Author:

Jeffrey Braxton is a trial lawyer in Fort Lauderdale who has devoted his 22-year career to the practice of personal injury law. As lead trial attorney for The South Florida Injury Law Firm, Jeff has litigated thousands of cases and is a member of the Million Dollar Advocates Forum, an exclusive group of attorneys who have resolved cases in excess of one million dollars.