Traumatic brain injuries to children while at daycare

Daycares and other childcare facilities are necessities to many parents and guardians of children not yet in school. Some childcare facilities take care of children afterschool who would otherwise be home alone. Florida law defines childcare as the care, protection and supervision of a child for less than 24 hours a day regularly for payment or fee. Daycares supplement parental care via supervision and interactions such as recreation, education and provision of food for a limited time of the day.

Childcare facilities usually have more than five children in their care that are not related to the operator of the facility. At times monitoring and caring for multiple children at a time can become overwhelming. Situations may occur in which one or more daycare worker violate their duty to care to the children at the daycare. Breach of these duties can result in an injury such as a traumatic brain injury (TBI).

A traumatic brain injury is often the result of a bump, blow or jolt to the head. Children are at a higher risk for a TBI than adults. Consider the case of children at a Florida daycare. The daycare management found video of one of their employees hitting and abusing the children in their care. Ultimately, the worker was charged with child abuse.

The Florida case illustrates a serious case of child abuse than could easily lead to TBI or other injuries.

If you or someone you love suspects abuse or their child sustained a TBI at a daycare center, then you could file a criminal or civil case. Parents and guardians have a right to file a lawsuit to receive compensation for resulting medical bills and pain and suffering.

Electric scooters are entering busy no-ride zones in Tampa, says report

Electric scooters have enjoyed popularity since they were first introduced in Tampa in May 2019. However, safety concerns still persist about this new mode of transportation despite the pilot program’s overall success.

Under the program’s guidelines, people are prohibited from riding the scooters on the Riverwalk, Seventh Avenue and Bayshore Boulevard, which are among Tampa’s busiest walkways. However, the four scooter companies operating in the city have been inconsistent when it comes to complying with the no-ride zone restrictions.

According a City of Tampa report, scooter users entered no-ride zones over 1,150 times during September and October. The Riverwalk accounted for two-thirds of the violations. Lime had the most offenses with 425.

A Lime spokesperson said the company has been working on rider safety and focusing on keeping riders out of no-ride zones. The reason for the high number of violations could be because Lime scooters do not fully brake when entering banned areas. Instead, they slow down to three miles per hour.

Some of Tampa’s most popular running paths and major pedestrian walkways are overcrowded as it is. Adding scooters to the mix poses potential safety issues in congested areas that are full of walkers, runners and bikers.

Electric scooter companies are working on better enforcement of rules and scooter integration into cities. In the meantime scooter riders, bicyclists and pedestrians should continue to be cautious and vigilant to ensure everyone stays safe.

If you have been injured in an electric scooter accident, contact the Tampa personal injury lawyers at Joyce & Reyes. We offer free consultations.

Slip and fall accidents can lead to traumatic brain injuries

Slip and fall accidents most commonly result in injuries like broken bones, sprains, bruises. However, more serious injuries are also possible. Slip and falls cause head injuries that range from mild concussions to life-altering traumatic brain injuries (TBIs).

Certain types of falls can result in brain injuries, depending on factors such as how you land and whether the fall took place from a great height. For instance, a severe blow to the head is possible after falling down a flight of stairs. In fact, falls are the leading cause of TBIs, especially among children and older adults. Around 35 percent of brain injuries are linked to slip and fall accidents.

If you hurt your head in a slip and fall accident, make sure to get medical attention. Sometimes, signs of a brain injury may not show up until days later. As a result, it is important to pay attention to any physical or cognitive symptoms you experience. Symptoms like headaches, nausea, dizziness, poor coordination, blurred vision or slurred speech may indicate a brain injury.

If you suffered a brain injury in a slip and fall accident on someone else’s property, it is worth considering your legal options for seeking compensation. Depending on how severe the accident was, you may be left struggling with medical bills due to expensive treatments while being unable to work.

In Florida, property owners and businesses have a duty to keep their premises reasonably safe for guests and customers. The key to a successful negligence claim is proving that the property owner knew or should have known about the hazardous condition that led to the fall and resulting injury.

The experienced Tampa personal injury lawyers at Joyce & Reyes understand the complexities involved in such cases. Contact us to learn how we can help.

How using social media can damage your personal injury claim

If you have been injured in a car accident, you may instinctively decide to post an update about it on social media to quickly and easily let your friends and family know how you are doing. However, what many people do not realize is that posts on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and other social media platforms can have a devastating impact on your personal injury case.

Anything you post online can be used against you by the opposing party, including at-fault drivers and their attorneys, to undermine your case. It is not uncommon for insurance companies to monitor your social media accounts after an accident and attempt to gain access to them. As a result, it is best not to accept new followers or friend requests from anyone you do not know personally until your case is over.

Importantly, avoid sharing anything about your case on social media. Even seemingly innocent posts that are unrelated to your accident or injuries can jeopardize the outcome of your personal injury case. Photos are often used in court to contradict an accident victim’s claims. For instance, a photo of you at a party with friends after an accident may be used as evidence that your injuries are not very serious, even if you were smiling through your pain just for the photo or standing up only for a few minutes.

You should also adjust your privacy settings to prevent others from tagging you in photos or mentioning you on social media sites, which can be just as damaging as your own posts. Online posts are never truly private. In most cases, defense lawyers can request access to your posts, chat conversations and private messages as part of the discovery process even if you have limited public access to them.

The safest course of action is to stay off social media and even shut down your accounts until your accident claim is resolved. After a car accident, you want to do everything in your power to protect your rights and present the strongest possible case. Speak to a personal injury attorney at Joyce & Reyes to learn how we can help you maximize the compensation you deserve for your injuries.

Simple ways to prevent children from suffering head injuries around the home

Head injuries are among the most common types of injuries that children tend to suffer. They account for around 80 percent of pediatric trauma cases, according to the Institute for Orthopaedics and Neurosciences at Carilion Clinic. The severity of head injuries can vary greatly, ranging from a small bump to a debilitating traumatic brain injury (TBI).

While TBIs can occur in many different circumstances, such as when kids play sports or fall on the playground, recent research published in the Brain Injury journal pointed out that many incidents that need medical treatment tend to take place in the home. For instance, children can potentially sustain brain injuries due to fall hazards like loose wiring or uneven flooring.

The best way to protect your child from a TBI is to prevent it from happening in the first place. Although no child is injury proof, parents can take precautions to remove fall hazards at home by following some simple tips:

  • Ensure all area rugs are secured to the floor.
  • Install window guards to prevent falls out of open windows.
  • Use safety gates at the top and bottom of stairs.
  • Keep stairs and floors clear of clutter.
  • Attach furniture to walls to prevent the risk of tipping.
  • Do not leave infants alone atop high places such as a bed or couch.
  • Make sure bunkbeds have secure railings.

Parents may do everything in their power to keep their children safe from head injuries at home. While they can monitor their home environment, they have no control over outside circumstances that may cause their child to suffer a TBI.

If your child has sustained a catastrophic brain injury due to the negligence of another party, you need a skilled brain injury lawyer. Contact Joyce & Reyes to learn how we can help you pursue compensation for your child’s injuries.

Howard Frankland Bridge crash highlights dangers of reckless driving

Reckless driving involves failing to prioritize safety, disregarding the rules of the road and ignoring the consequences of your driving practices when behind the wheel. Unfortunately, far too many drivers engage in reckless driving behaviors that put themselves and others at risk of suffering serious injuries or even death due to auto accidents.

In a recent Florida crash, a man died after his SUV flew over the Howard Frankland Bridge barrier and into Tampa Bay. Officials said the two drivers involved in the fatal accident were driving “aggressively and recklessly” and seemed to provoke each other.

National data indicates reckless driving is becoming more and more common. In a 2016 study, the American Automobile Association found that around eight million U.S. drivers engaged in extreme road rage, including exiting their vehicle to confront another driver or slamming into another car on purpose.

In Florida, drivers can be cited for reckless driving. However, reckless driving tends to go unnoticed by law enforcement officials until it occurs in connection with a crash. An auto accident can be attributed to reckless driving and driver negligence if it is caused by behaviors such as speeding, passing dangerously, drunk driving, tailgating, using a cellphone or other distracted driving practices.

Although you may have no control over reckless drivers, you can choose how you react to them. The key to safe driving is for drivers is to remain calm and make every effort to minimize conflict on the road. It is best not to engage with drivers who are displaying aggressive behaviors, such as gesturing or shouting. Responding in a heated manner will only escalate the situation and lead to potentially dangerous consequences.

If you see someone driving recklessly, you can call the police and let them handle the situation. If you or a loved one was injured in an auto accident with a reckless driver, contact Joyce and Reyes to learn how you can pursue compensation.

Traumatic brain injuries among children: common causes and prevention tips

Traumatic brain injuries (TBIs) can occur due to a variety of reasons, leading to cognitive impairment, disabilities or even death. Because of their potentially debilitating consequences, being aware of how to prevent brain injuries among children is important.

A recent study in the Brain Injury journal identified the top 10 consumer products or activities that have led to TBI-related emergency room visits among 4.1 million children and teens in the United States. Researchers said around 72 percent of nonfatal TBIs in these age groups are linked to everyday items and activities like home furnishings and sports respectively. Here is the full list:

  • Beds
  • Floors
  • Football
  • Stairs
  • Basketball
  • Bicycles
  • Ceilings and walls
  • Chairs
  • Tables
  • Soccer

Sports and recreation were associated with 28.8 percent of brain injuries in children. They were followed by home furnishings and fixtures, as well as home structures and construction materials, each accounting for just over 17 percent of TBIs. Child nursery equipment and toys were linked to 2.7 percent and 2.4 percent of injuries respectively.

The researchers recommended several strategies to prevent TBIs in children around the home including:

  • Removing area rugs and other tripping hazards
  • Improving lighting
  • Avoiding prefabricated stairs
  • Using more home safety devices such as stair-gates and guardrails
  • Avoiding hard-surface playgrounds

Health care providers should also perform routine imaging tests on children with mild TBIs. TBI occurs when a sudden blow, bump or jolt damages the brain and disrupts its normal function. If your loved one has suffered a brain injury, contact the personal injury attorneys at Joyce & Reyes to learn how we can help.

What patients can do to protect themselves from medical errors

Patients expect medical professionals to prioritize their safety and have their best interests in mind. Unfortunately, that is not always the case. As health care systems become larger and more complex, quality of care can suffer. Neglecting a patient’s needs can lead to dangerous medical errors such as a misdiagnoses, botched surgeries, adverse drug reactions or harmful infections.

While there is no foolproof way to ensure you will receive proper treatment, taking some precautions may help reduce the risk of medical errors. Here are some tips to help patients stay safe:

Ask questions. Before undergoing any surgery or procedure, speak to the doctor who will be performing it. Have them explain why it is required and all the potential risks involved. This will help you avoid unnecessary treatments or tests. Do not hesitate to ask for a second opinion if needed.

Check medication. Always review any medication being prescribed or administered to you. Check to make sure it is the correct name, dosage and type. Also find out what the medication’s purpose is. Ask for clarification or speak up if something does not seem right.

Research the medical professional and facility. Make sure your doctor is board certified and properly trained. If you are undergoing surgery, find out about the surgeon’s success rates, reputation and experience. Remember, not all hospitals are the same. The reality is that the risk of medical errors varies with each facility. Research different hospitals and choose one that has a high safety and quality rating.

Despite taking these and other precautions, doctors and hospitals can still make medical mistakes. If you have suffered injuries due to a medical error, please contact the personal injury lawyers at Joyce & Reyes. You may be able to file a medical malpractice claim to obtain compensation and hold the responsible parties accountable for their negligence.

Five simple safety tips for Florida pedestrians

Florida’s sunny weather and plethora of outdoor activities are popular among residents and millions of visitors alike. However, data indicates that the state is also one of the most dangerous places in the country for pedestrians. There are certain precautions people can take to help minimize the risk of serious pedestrian accidents. Here are some basic safety tips to remember when walking on the streets of Tampa and other areas:

Avoid distractions. Always keep your eyes and ears on the road so that you can spot approaching vehicles. Distractions such as listening to music on headphones or looking down at a cellphone while walking will diminish your awareness of your surroundings.

Look both ways before crossing. This applies even if you are using a crosswalk and traffic signals indicate that it is okay to walk. Look left, right and left again, and wait until traffic clears from both directions before crossing. Do not enter a crosswalk after the pedestrian light turns yellow or starts flashing.

Use sidewalks when possible. Sidewalks provide pedestrians with a designated area where they can walk safely while remaining separate from moving vehicles. If a sidewalk is unavailable due to construction or other hazards, pedestrians should walk on the shoulder of the road while facing oncoming traffic.

Be extra careful at night. Pedestrians should ensure they are visible to motorists at night. Use a flashlight or reflective material on clothing or dog leashes. Try to wear bright colors to avoid blending into your surroundings.

Follow Florida laws. Pedestrians may have the right of way at crosswalks and in many other instances. However, they are also responsible for gaining familiarity with state pedestrian rules regarding crosswalks and right of way.

If you or a loved one becomes injured in a pedestrian accident, you may be able to seek compensation for your injuries. Contact the experienced Tampa personal injury attorneys at Joyce and Reyes to learn more.

5 Key steps to take after a bicycle accident

Florida is a bicycle-friendly state with a large number of cyclists. While cycling is supposed to be a fun and safe activity, there are inherent risks involved. Bicycle accidents can occur due to any number of reasons, whether it is poor road conditions or distracted driving. As a result, it is important to remember these basic steps so that you know what to do if you are ever involved in a crash:

Seek medical care. Make sure to go see a physician as soon as possible after a bicycle accident, even if your injuries appear to be minor. In some cases there may not be any apparent physical symptoms of an internal injury. Additionally, medical bills and records will be useful later on if you decide to file a personal injury claim. Of course, if your injuries are severe, call for emergency help immediately.

Obtain the other party’s details. Whether the person who hit you was a fellow bicyclist or a driver, be sure to write down their name and contact details. If a vehicle was involved in the crash, ask for the driver’s license number. Also remember to document their insurance information.

Speak to witnesses. If other drivers or pedestrians saw the crash and remained at the scene, write down their names, phone numbers and addresses. Your bicycle accident lawyer may get in touch with these witnesses in the near future as part of your personal injury claim.

Document what happened. Take photos of the bicycle accident scene, as well as your injuries, any equipment damage and other signs of the collision like skid marks on the road. Jot down as many details as you can, such as the weather and road conditions as they will be helpful later on.

Speak to a personal injury attorney. If you were injured in a bicycle accident, you may be able to obtain compensation from the responsible party. Call a personal injury attorney to find out about your legal options and the possibility of filing a personal injury claim.

The knowledgeable bicycle accident lawyers at Joyce & Reyes will handle all aspects of your case so that you can focus on recovering from your injuries. Contact us today.