NC Aviation Law Attorney

Suit Filed Against Lexus In Carbon Monoxide Death

One of new high-tech features on Toyota’s luxury car, the Lexus, maybe deadly as well as nifty.  The keyless ignition system is being linked to several carbon monoxide poison deaths when people leave the car running in the garage without knowing it because the engine runs so quietly. 

This is the case in the death of a 79-year-old Queens’ attorney, reports the NY Daily News.  In February 2009, his long time companion parked their new Lexus in the attached garage and accidentally left the engine running.  The next day she was found unconscious on the bedroom floor and he was dead from carbon monoxide poisoning.  Although she survived, she is unable to walk and has difficulty speaking. 

In her lawsuit, she accuses Toyota of failing to install a “shutdown” switch in the cars – which can be turned on or off at the touch of a button.  The switch would turn off the engine when the car is unoccupied or not touched for a certain amount of time.  The problem at this time is the engine continues to run even after the driver leaves the vehicle with the key fob which communicates with the car’s computer.

Another investigation is still underway in Palm Beach County as to whether or not the August carbon-monoxide death of a 29-year-old woman was caused by the Lexus in her garage.

This is just one more problem for Toyota which has had to recall millions of vehicle for other problems such as pedals and accelerators that could stick.  

As a personal injury attorney who is concerned when deaths occur which could have possibly been avoided, I hope Toyota can find a timely “fix” for this latest problem before any more deaths occur.

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Posted by 5:14 pm

John Deere Faces Wrongful Death Lawsuit

The family and estate of a young man killed when he was thrown from a John Deere Dozer and killed during heavy equipment operator school at Associated Training Services of Texas, reports the Southeast Texas Record. 

The lawsuit has been filed against Indiana Mills & Manufacturing Inc. and Deere & Co. The original complaint states the student traveled over a ridge of dirt and then on to a slope when he was thrown from the bulldozer to the ground.  The Dozer continued moving and ran over the young man, killing him. 

Indians Mills & Manufacturing is accused of negligence and strict liability over the design and function of its seatbelt and buckle. John Deere is accused of negligence and strict liability for using an unsafe seatbelt and for failing to use due care and caution in the design and manufacture of the Dozer. 

The family is asking for wrongful death damages, survival damages, compensatory damages, interest, and court costs.

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Posted by 3:00 pm

NTSB Faults Pilot For Deadly Helicopter Crash In Maryland

In its final report released earlier this month, the National Transportation Safety Board stated pilot error was probably the cause of the helicopter crash on South Mountain on July 23, 2009. 

Four people were killed when the helicopter went down on the flight from Hagerstown to Frederick.  The NTSB says the pilot used poor judgment when he chose to make the flight on the dark night in adverse weather conditions even after talking with a fellow employee at Advanced Helicopter Concepts.   

The report states the helicopter took off after the Hagerstown air traffic control tower closed and entered an area of reduced visibility near the top of South Mountain.  It is thought it turned around and was headed back west when it hit power lines and crashed and burst into flames. 

This helicopter crash is a perfect example of how on board recording devices would help investigators know exactly what was decided in the cockpit.

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Posted by 1:22 pm

Family Of City Worker Killed In Mower Accident Settles Lawsuit

A confidential last minute settlement has been reach in the lawsuit brought by the family of a city Parks Department employee who was killed in 2003 by a runaway lawnmower, reports the Telegram& Gazette of Worcester, Mass. 

The 54-year-old man died from injuries he sustained when he was run over by a 6,000 lb. large capacity mower as it rolled down a hill.  The man had stopped the mower and shut off the engine before the mower started to roll – he was run over as he tried to halt the machine. 

His widow filed a wrongful death lawsuit against Textron, Inc which owns the Jacobsen Company, manufacturer of the mower.  The lawsuit accused Textron of selling an unsafe and defective product and of breaching its implied warranty of merchantability.  The lawsuit contends the accident was cause by a defective parking brake in which the cable corroded and broke because the vinyl coating did not cover the entire length. 

Textron denied any negligence and claimed the mower had not been properly maintained.

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Posted by 1:52 pm

Parents Sue When Stove Tips And Kills Two-Year-Old

On July 11, 2010, a two-year-old was crushed to death when the stove in his family’s kitchen tipped over on him, reports stltoday.com.  The parents have since filed a wrongful death lawsuit in St. Louis County Circuit Court seeking damages from the Oak Tree Apartments for an undisclosed amount.

The lawsuit claims the accident could have been prevented and the child’s life saved if the landlord had secured the stove with a simple bracket. 

 At least 34 people have been killed since 1980 in similar accidents.  The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission counted 107 incidents of injury or death from 1980 through 2006 – half of the fatalities were children under age 2.  Most of the injuries were from burns from hot liquids when the range tipped.  

Accidents such as these are frustrating for safety advocates who have tried for years to prompt people to install the inexpensive bracket.  Pressure on an open oven door – even from a small climbing child – may be enough leverage to cause the stove to pitch forward.  Children often use an open door as a step to be able to reach something on the counter – too often with deadly results.

The making of lighter weight stoves made the industry provide anti-tip brackets since 1991.  Even with the warnings of danger, consumer experts estimate as many as 45 million American homes have not installed the anti-tip device.

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Posted by 3:32 pm

Hyundai Settles In Death Of Motorcyclist

The Orange County Register reports Hyundai has made a confidential settlement with a family whose son was killed while riding his motorcycle in 2005.  The incident was caused by a Hyundai executive who was driving drunk. 

The 23-year-old musician and motorcyclist was killed when the executive lost control of his Hyundai SUV after drinking at a company –sponsored dinner, hitting the young man causing him to be thrown from his motorcycle onto the freeway where he was run over by several other vehicles.

 The family of the young man sued the executive and Hyundai claiming the company had a corporate culture of promoting drinking at company functions and that Hyundai helped the executive flee the country shortly after the accident.

 The family stated it is pleased with the settlement.  Their son was a college student and participated in a band that often played at Disneyland.

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Posted by 1:43 pm

Owner Sued After Man Dies From Dog Bite

 

The Seattle Times reports the family of a man who died 10 days after being bitten by a dog has sued the dog’s owner. 

According to the family of the victim, the Redbone Coonhound had a history of biting people and was still allowed to roam unleashed.  The owner has denied the dog was off-leash the day he bit the victim. 

The owner and the victim were at a storage facility when the victim was bitten on the finger, drawing blood.  The next day the victim severe pain in his leg and went to the hospital where they found a blood clot in his leg.  Later an infection he developed was diagnose as Capnocytophaga canimorsus sepsis – a bacterium common to cat and dog saliva.  The bacterium led to multiple organ failure and tissue necrosis – a very painful death. 

Although the dog owner contends the dog was in his SUV and the victim reached in the window to pet him, according to state law, a dog’s owner can be held civilly responsible if his or her dog bites someone and the owner knew the dog was potentially dangerous.  The dog has bitten another person earlier the same day and veterinary records show the dog bite people as a puppy. 

When the dog owner’s insurance policies refused to pay the full amount of two policies – about $1.5 million – to the family of the deceased, they decided to sue.

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Posted by 11:58 am

Claim Of Defective Seats Brings Wrongful Death Lawsuit Against Honda

A lawsuit has been filed in Texas against Honda Motor Co., Ltd. by the parents of a young woman who died in her 2005 Honda Civic in April of this year, reports the Southeast Texas Record. 

The young woman died when she lost control of her car and skidded off the rain slick road. She hit several trees and even though she was wearing a seatbelt, she was killed when her seat collapsed and she was thrown into the back seat. 

The lawsuit claims the Honda Civic violated the principles of crashworthiness by failing to provide adequate restraint and failed to prevent ejection.  It also claims the car was unreasonably dangerous and defective because the collapsing seat exposed the driver to the risk, hazard and danger of ejection.  Honda is accused of not conducting adequate testing and proper engineering analysis.

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Posted by 11:51 am

Parents of Student Killed By Propeller Files Wrongful Death Lawsuit

The parents of a Chinese flight student who was killed when hit by a propeller has filed a wrongful death lawsuit against the Sierra Academy Aeronautics at Castle Airport, reports the Merced Sun-Star of California. 

In November 2008, the 26-year-old exited a plane before it taxied to a stop running toward the front of the plane and into the turning propeller.  An instructor had checked the weather, endorsed the man’s logbook, and OK’d for a solo flight, but before take-off another student boarded the plane and flew the last leg back to the airport.  The instructor was unaware another student would be on board. The man killed ran from the plane in hopes of not being seen by the instructors at the school.

 The lawsuit claims the school should not have let the man fly without an instructor and that the school acted negligently when it let him fly in bad weather.  

 The NTSB found the incident was caused by the student’s own failure to see the propeller.  Initial investigators thought the incident was partly caused by the two students trying to hide the fact they had piloted the plane together.  Further investigation proved this to be the case.

 This was the first death of this kind in the school’s 44 years of operation.

Wrongful Death

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Posted by 2:17 pm

$132M Awarded In Ford Rollover Crash

A Jasper County (Mississippi) jury has awarded the family of a young man killed in a rollover crash in 2001 $132 million – the largest award ever against Ford in a lawsuit involving a Ford Explorer or a Ford Expedition reports the Clarion-Ledger.

The 22-year-old, a Meridian High School standout and a top New York Mets baseball prospect, was killed in March 2001 when he was thrown from a 2001 Ford Explorer.  He was driving to spring training in Port St. Lucie, Fl., when he veered to avoid a vehicle and the Ford SUV rolled over.  The lawsuit blamed the death on a defective seatbelt and the tendency for that model Ford to rollover.  Ford settled for an undisclosed amount in the punitive-damage phase of the lawsuit. 

A passenger in the Ford Explorer received $1.5 million for the injuries he sustained in the crash. 

Ford’s corporate spokesman stated excessive speed and the fact the victim was not wearing a seat belt caused the young man’s death. 

Last year, the U.S. Supreme Court upheld an $82.6 million verdict awarded to a woman in California who was paralyzed in an Explorer rollover.

At Crouse Law Offices we have vast experience in product liablity and wrongful death.  If you have been injured or have had a loved one  killed due to a defective product, call us at 1-919-861-0500 or contact us online.

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Posted by 2:46 pm

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