Category Archives: Uncategorized

Can I Sue The Police For Killing My Dog?

Saturday, June 10, 2017

Police officers receive training for many different scenarios, including those involving dogs. Unfortunately, mistakes can and do happen. The heat of the moment, a perceived threat, or miscommunication can all lead to the untimely death of a beloved canine. In these cases, a dog owner can take a few different types of actions to hold the officer/agency accountable and start the recovery process.

Possible Claims Against the Police

A pet owner can look at both federal and state laws to determine the right jurisdiction for a legal claim. Unless an officer commits an act of cruelty that results in the death of the dog, California remedies fall under property-related claims. Under Californian and most other state laws, an owner can sue for the value of the dog, any medical bills for the dog prior to death, and emotional distress. Animal cruelty deaths fall under a different category and may warrant a larger settlement.

Many dog owners choose to file claims against police officers in federal court as a Fourth Amendment violation (illegal property seizure). Depending on the facts of the case, the plaintiff may make an argument for illegal seizure and/or acts of excessive force. In a federal claim, a plaintiff may receive damages for costs associated with the death of the dog, owner mistreatment (if applicable), and personal emotional distress.

While these claims seem straightforward, law enforcement agencies enjoy many protections from both civil and criminal claims associated with dog shootings. Officers enjoy civil action immunity if they acted within the scope of the job and made a good faith attempt to honor an owner’s rights. Officers may also escape liability in claims if they can demonstrate adherence to agency procedures during the incident.

A law enforcement agency may attempt to settle a claim outside of court instead of fighting the accusation. Dog owners must carefully evaluate the settlement offer before accepting or rejecting it. An agency may only offer compensation for the “going rate” of the dog based on its breed, background, and age. This type of settlement may not cover the pain and suffering an owner experiences after experiencing the death of a canine companion.

What to Do After a Police-Driven Canine Killing

Dog owners can take steps immediately after a canine killing incident to protect their rights to compensation:

  1. Call emergency services. Report the incident and request support and an investigation. If you wait to report the incident, investigators may miss important pieces of evidence. As with any injurious incident, a swift investigation can prevent evidence loss or tampering.
  2. Record witness information. Look for any witnesses to the event and write down their contact information. In urban and neighborhood environments, search for any security cameras that might contain footage of the incident. A visual recording can serve as powerful evidence of police misconduct.
  3. Record officer information. If you are present at the time of the killing, ask for the officer’s name and badge number. Officers must file a report every time they discharge their weapons. Investigators can often locate an offending officer, even if the owner did not witness the incident.
  4. Talk to an attorney. Canine killing cases run the gamut from small claims settlements to civil claims worth hundreds of thousands of dollars. Until a police misconduct attorney reviews the evidence, avoid taking a settlement or talking about the case.

Law enforcement agencies do not keep data on the number of dogs shot, but one specialist from the Department of Justice’s Community Oriented Policing Services facility estimates officers kill 25-30 companion dogs every day. As social media draws awareness to the ongoing problem and more loving pet owners pursue legal action against the police, standard legal procedures may change. Instead of using lethal force, officers could substitute a non-lethal alternative and avoid unnecessary harm to animals and their owners.

Until law enforcement practices change, pet owners must understand their rights after a dog’s death. They can pursue a civil claim to agency perspectives and receive compensation for their losses.

Posted by highrank at 9:28 pm

Birth Injury Support Groups in California

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Birth injuries can be life changing for both child and parent. The trauma of a birth injury and the recovery journey can be difficult to endure alone. Luckily, parents don’t have to figure out life with a birth injured child without help. Birth injury support groups exist for the families of minor patients. These groups can help the parents of children who suffer from birth injuries such as Erb’s Palsy, brachial plexus injuries, brain injuries, autism, cerebral palsy, and other disorders. They can also help mothers who are coping with anxiety from a traumatic birth or post-partum depression. Here is an introduction to some birth injury support groups that are available in California.

BirthTalk.org

This UK-based online support group includes a variety of traumatic birth experiences, with heartfelt stories families share. This group regularly posts helpful information and resources for coping with a traumatic birth and injuries, such as books, articles, and blog posts. Find information about how to prepare for birth, how to heal after a traumatic birth, and how to birth again after a harrowing first birth.

United Brachial Plexus Network, Inc.

This national organization has a wealth of information and support options for parents with children who have suffered brachial plexus injuries. These are injuries to the brachial plexus, or the network of nerves in the arm and shoulder. Brachial plexus injuries commonly occur when the baby becomes stuck in the birth canal, lodged behind the mother’s pelvic bone. Improper use of birthing tools and techniques can cause this type of injury, especially when the physician reacts poorly to an emergency situation.

The United Brachial Plexus Network (UBPN) offers resources for parents as well as for people living with brachial plexus injuries. It offers scholarships for individuals with this type of injury, as well as an annual camp for children, adults, and parents. Find everything you need from a brachial plexus injury support group with the UBPN, from learning tips on how to prevent this kind of injury, support for families, education about this disability, and a worldwide network of people dealing with this injury.

Brain Injury Association of California

This support group is helpful for all parents of children with brain injuries, and not just brain injuries relating to traumatic birth. The Brain Injury Association of California is a nonprofit organization that provides information and support for families and individuals affected by brain injures. This group publishes recent news relating to brain injuries, as well as information about local events and fundraisers. It helps people get involved with the cause, such as attending educational events or participating in forums. It is also a great source of support for those living with brain injuries. The group provides personal stories, FAQs, recent research, and staff available for conversation.

United Cerebral Palsy

United Cerebral Palsy (UCP) has an extensive network around the country. It provides services and support based within individual communities, serving the unique needs of people with cerebral palsy (CP). Parents and individuals can find information, resources, and support for life with cerebral palsy. UCP aims to help those with CP live life to the fullest, providing a way to stay connected and join the conversation. The UCP also accepts donations for helping those living with CP.

Attention Deficit Disorder Association

Attention deficit disorder (ADD) and other behavioral disorders, can stem from a traumatic birth injury, especially those involving the brain. Lack of oxygen to the brain (brain hypoxia) during birth can lead to permanent brain damage and behavioral changes in children. The Attention Deficit Disorder Association (ADDA) gives you excellent resources you can trust and a network of individuals going through the same experiences with whom you can connect. As an individual with ADD or a parent of a child with ADD, this organization can help you learn how to live with this disorder and join a community of others who can support you and your family.

Posted by highrank at 10:55 pm

Bakersfield Attorneys Take on Trump Immigration

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

During the time President Trump has been in office, he has made big strides toward changes in American immigration policies. His administration is focused on three goals for immigration reform: to create a wall across the southern border, to enforce laws in accordance with our Constitutional system of government, and to improve jobs, wages, and security for all Americans. As President Trump’s immigration policies tighten, undocumented immigrants fear for their futures. In this time of great uncertainty, Bakersfield attorneys with Rodriguez & Associates are offering free legal advice and representation.

Daniel Rodriguez and His Mission to Protect Immigrants

Daniel Rodriguez of Rodriguez & Associates grew up in a family of migrant farm workers. He has worked and lived in multiple states across the U.S, working in the fields and holding a variety of other jobs while putting himself through college and law school. His father could not read or write English or Spanish, and his mother only had three years of schooling. Daniel’s upbringing gives him a unique perspective as a lawyer in Bakersfield. He knows the importance of hard work and the value in protecting those who cannot protect themselves.

Today, Daniel is dedicated to helping America’s immigrants navigate the complex and often frightening new immigration laws. As President Trump orders 10,000 more immigration agents and gives local police officers more power to assist in immigration law enforcement, immigrants need more legal help than ever. Police are conducting mandatory vehicle checkpoints and making house calls to find and detain undocumented immigrants. Daniel and a panel of 15 lawyers recently held an open-to-the-public panel at California State University in Bakersfield to offer free legal advice for people in this situation.

Undocumented and documented immigrants face difficult questions and legal considerations, many of which are changing on a weekly basis under President Trump’s administration. During the free panel and in his professional time since, Attorney Rodriguez has offered counsel and legal advice to immigrants regarding deportation fears, documentation processes, police investigations, and bullying and harassment of minorities in hostile environments. It is a matter that hits close to home for Rodriguez, who wants to do everything possible to protect minorities.

Legal Counsel from Attorney Rodriguez in Bakersfield

Daniel Rodriguez and his team of local injury attorneys have a mission to help immigrants understand their rights and how to protect themselves and their families during this tumultuous time in America. At the public meeting, he acknowledged the unfortunate impacts of President Trump’s campaign when one mother mentioned the bullying and harassment of her daughter in school due to her race. The bullies called the young girl by a racial slur and said her family would get deported “once the wall went up.”

Rodriguez informed the woman that what her daughter is going through is illegal – the law protects children from physical, verbal, and psychological bullying in school. He recommended she file a complaint and keep documentation of the complaint. This is just one example of how Rodriguez is shedding light on the legal rights of immigrants.

The main point of conversation of the night, however, was what to do if confronted by police. The panel advised immigrants not to speak to police officers and not to answer the door if police come knocking. They also said to always be polite, even if you do not agree with why or how the officer is confronting you. Immigrants should not give police any excuse to take the situation to the next step. Staying calm, quiet, and courteous can prevent you from giving too much information to police and getting into further legal trouble. For any immigration questions, concerns, or legal needs, please come to the law offices of Rodriguez & Associates in Bakersfield.

Posted by highrank at 8:54 pm

Kern County Hiking Trails and Safety Tips

Tuesday, April 4, 2017

From Mt. Pinos to Sunday Peak and everywhere in-between, Bakersfield, and the larger Kern County area, has numerous options for fantastic hiking. Kern County is home to strenuous hikes at high elevation as well as leisurely hikes perfect for families and kids. No matter what kind of hike you are looking for in the area, it’s always important to take necessary safety precautions.

Best Hikes in Kern County

The southern end of the Sierra Nevadas and Sequoia National Park are within Kern County and a short drive from Bakersfield proper. Challenging hikes with stunning views are not too far away. Some of the best within Kern County include:

  • Owen’s Peak – At 8,453 feet, it is the tallest mountain in Kern County. The trail is nearly 13 miles roundtrip, and there is more than 3,700 feet of elevation gain. It’s a steep trail as well, so be prepared.
  • Wind Wolves Preserve Trail – This trail is just shy of eight miles round trip, and even features a waterfall. Dogs are allowed as well.
  • Hart Park Trail – Replete with picnic tables, grills and boat rentals, this two mile loop trail circuits Kern River, and is perfect for an afternoon jog or leisurely stroll with your pooch.
  • Piute Peak – This prominent peak is 8,440 feet, and the road to the trailhead can be rocky at points but offers beautiful scenery and the chance to see wildlife.
  • Badger Gap and Little Tenant Spring Trails – This is accessible year-round, allows dogs and is a little less than 10 miles roundtrip.
  • Tecuya Mountain – This peak lies on the southern end of Kern County, and is about 7,160 feet tall. At a little less than five miles round trip, it’s a short but moderately steep hike.

There are many more in Kern County, particularly near Fort Tejon State Historic Park and Sequoia National Forest. Find what suits your abilities and enjoy yourself.

Kern County Hiking Safety Tips

Given the hot temperatures of Central California and the high winds that can accompany them, it’s important to be prepared when going on a hike that will last more than a couple hours. Water and food are obvious necessities; dehydration starts as mildly as a headache, but if left untreated can manifest into confusion and disorientation. In the California sun, a lack of water can prove fatal.

If you feel dehydration coming on or notice these symptoms in someone else, stop moving and drink water until they feel better, or if no water is available, turn around and go home immediately. Other provisions such as these are recommended:

  • A cell phone is important, but can lose battery. Have a trail map and/or a compass just in case.
  • Extra clothing in case of weather changes.
  • Keep an eye on the weather. The worst place to be during a storm is on an exposed trail or ridge.
  • For longer hikes or those that cross streams, rivers and snow, an extra pair of dry socks will help you avoid blisters.
  • Sunscreen. Even on cloudy or cool days, the trails of Central California often do not supply sufficient shade.
  • It can’t be stressed enough; bring 1-2 liters of water to stay properly hydrated.

It’s vital to tell someone where you are going, just in case of emergency. The worst thing that could happen, on top of being lost, is no one knowing where to look for you. Some common injuries that can occur on a hike:

  • Blisters – Hiking with these is more than a nuisance; it can make it impossible. Dry socks are crucial.
  • Sunburn – The sun is harsh at high, dry altitudes, so sunscreen is important for minimizing the skin’s exposure to UV rays.
  • Bug bites – These are particularly common if hiking in wooded areas. Bring spray if you know they’ll be present.
  • Twisted ankle – Good footwear provides comfortable and even support will help prevent this, even if you encounter slippery rock or muddy ground.
  • Exhaustion – This usually comes with similar symptoms as dehydration, and greatly increases the likelihood of getting lost.

A hike is a great avenue for exercise and exploration, but being properly prepared will prevent injuries, dehydration and getting lost. Take your time, know when to turn around, stay with the group and the experience that much more enjoyable.

Posted by highrank at 6:08 pm

Can Reporters Be Held Liable for Harassment

Friday, March 24, 2017

The people have a right to know. The job of a journalist is to report need to know information to the public, but sometimes, the means by which journalists obtain their information can fall on decidedly muddy moral grounds. This is particularly evident here in California, where paparazzi make a living disguising and hiding themselves in order to sneak pictures of celebrities.

The First Amendment provides broad protections to members of the press, but if a person feels harassed by a reporter, what is the law?

Expectation of Privacy

The general rule here for all citizens is whether you have an expectation of privacy. It’s not expected that a celebrity or politician will have the same amount of privacy as other people, yet they still have rights meant to protect what privacy they have. It is allowed to film, photograph or record what is seen and heard in public places. This idea has recently been given much scrutiny regarding the filming of police, specifically in the event of police brutality, a right which has been upheld by the courts.

The area of privacy which has become most important is online. The information we store and share online can be stolen by someone with sinister purposes, from which it could take months to recover personally and financially. As of right now, the law states that we have a reasonable expectation of privacy online, but Internet Service Providers and some politicians are looking to change that line of thinking.

Can a Reporter Be Held Liable for Harassment Claims?

Where a journalist may see surveillance, their subject may see stalking. The consensus amongst reporters is that going undercover and obtaining a job at a farm in an effort to spotlight animal abuse is fine, but using long microphones or binoculars to spy on a celebrity in an effort to obtain juicy gossip is unethical. Er go, the effect the news has on the health and safety of others must be the greater goal.

Intrusive actions such as staking out the home, following them, or recording them in private places can be labeled as harassment. A reporter can absolutely be held liable for these claims, particularly in California where two anti-surveillance laws have been passed:

  • Senate Bill 606 – Passed in 2013, this makes the penalty for harassing the children of a person purely because of that person’s status much more harsh. Jennifer Garner and Halle Berry testified in favor of this bill, which makes it a misdemeanor to alarm, annoy, torment or terrorize the child. The maximum punishment for a first offense is jail for one year and a fine of up to $10,000.
  • Senate Bill 856 – Passed in 2015, this bill made it illegal to operate drones on or near private property. Doing so would make that person liable for invasion of privacy, and the liable person could be sued for their actions.

Even if these activities occur in public, the reporter could still be held liable for harassment claims if their actions are deemed overzealous, intrusive, or of a stalking nature.

Posted by highrank at 5:04 pm

Tips for Visiting Bakersfield Speedway

Saturday, March 4, 2017

Bakersfield Speedway is renowned for its intimacy; spectators feel close to the action, which makes it a memorable experience, but also presents some added danger. Despite the precautions of a catch fence as well as the space between the fence and the first row of seats, an injury is still a possibility for the fans in attendance. For any large event, there are a number of safety precautions racing fans can take to ensure they have an enjoyable experience.

The Charlotte Observer reported that approximately 2,000 people are injured every year at a racetrack, and between 1990-2010, 46 people died. It’s unclear how many of those injuries stemmed from an accident on the track, but NASCAR is consistently seeking ways to improve fan safety, particularly when it relates to the catch fence.

Improvements to all racetracks in this regard have been paramount in the last 15 years, particularly due to a string of accidents in which fans were injured by race car debris. Enormous strides have been made in determining the proper angle of the walls, the height of the catch fence and the material it’s made out of which it’s made to prevent spectator injuries.

Bakersfield Speedway Safety Tips

Another thing that makes Bakersfield Speedway unique is that it’s a clay track only one-third of a mile around. The clay increases the odds of debris and dirt flying into the stands, which is just one of many things for which spectators should be prepared. Veteran attendees may know this, but some safety tips for racing fans at Bakersfield Speedway include:

  • Ear plugs and safety glasses are recommended to protect against loud noise and dirt.
  • Sit further back, especially with small children. It’s better to be safe than sorry and although being right up on the track may be exciting, the extremely loud noises and potential for flying debris may not be worth it.
  • Stay alert – while it’s tempting to let loose at a race, it’s important to pay attention to what is going on around you. Watch for car wrecks or flying debris and cover your head in the case of a crash.
  • An employee or security staff will always be nearby, report any emergencies to them as soon as possible.
  • When parking your car, do not leave any valuables in plain sight and be sure to lock all doors.
  • Only buy tickets from reliable vendors.
  • You may bring a blanket, seat cushion and extra clothing if needed.

If you have been drinking, don’t drive. Find another way to get home. There are plenty of options for sober transportation in Bakersfield:

  • Taxi
  • Rideshare options
  • Public transportation

Large crowds at racing events can also present their own challenges. If attending the race with children, be aware of their location at all times and don’t let them wander away from the group. Just in case it does happen, it’s a good idea to decide on a rendezvous point beforehand. While a concession stand or bathroom may just be a few feet away, the large crowds make it easy for a child to become disoriented or lost. Use the buddy system and make sure they are never left alone while visiting Bakersfield Speedway.

If an injury does occur at a racetrack like Bakersfield Speedway due to outside circumstances like poor security, insufficient fencing, or dangerous conditions, contact the personal injury attorneys of Rodriguez & Associates. Our skilled lawyers have experience handling a range of injury and accident cases across Kern County.

Posted by highrank at 3:27 pm

What Can I Do if My Car Insurance Claim is Denied?

Monday, January 30, 2017

It is not uncommon for automobile insurance companies to deny accident claims. A claimant may receive a denial if the company believes the driver could have avoided the accident, if nobody suffered an injury at the time of the accident, or if medical records do not indicate an injury or pain. Claim denials can be frustrating and stressful, especially if you are dealing with hefty medical bills and missed days at work. Here are a few options you may have after a car insurance claim denial.

Understand the Reason for Denial

The first step in fighting against a claim denial is to understand exactly why your insurance company denied the claim in the first place. Typically, you will receive a letter from your auto insurance company telling you it has denied your claim and giving a specific explanation. Common reasons for claim denials include:

  • You caused the accident or could have avoided the accident
  • You did not seek medical treatment immediately after your accident
  • Your policy does not include coverage for your type of claim
  • You currently have a lapse in coverage for failure to renew or pay your bill
  • You purchased a new vehicle without telling your insurance company
  • The damages in your claim exceed your policy limit

If the insurance company’s explanation does not make sense to you, call your insurance agent and ask the company to clarify. For example, if your letter states that you have a lapse in coverage but you know for a fact you paid your last bill, the denial may be due to a simple clerical error. It is always wise to talk to your insurer over the phone after receiving a claims letter if you need to clear anything up or just to verify that you received a valid claim. It is not uncommon for a company to process a claim incorrectly.

Dispute the Claim

One option you may have after a claim denial is to dispute the insurance company’s response. If you decide to dispute your claim denial on the grounds of misinformation in your original claim, send corrections or proper documentation to your insurer. For example, if you have medical documentation that proves you did in fact seek treatment right after a crash, you may send this directly to your insurer. The insurance company may be willing to negotiate if you send in corrections.

You may also contact the California State Insurance Commissioner for assistance. The commissioner is in charge of ensuring insurance company regulation. Be aware, however, that state commissioners receive thousands of complaints every year. Your complaint may never lead to a resolution of your denied insurance claim. If the commissioner does respond and send a letter to your insurance company, your company might write back with the same denial. If there are significant expenses in medical bills, serious pain and suffering, or major property damage at stake, it is wise to hire an attorney to deal with your insurance company.

Bad Faith Insurance Company Cases

It is possible that you are dealing with a bad faith insurance company, if you received a claim denial you believe is unfounded or unfair. Your company may be failing to fulfill its end of your policy contract or purposely interpreting vague and ambiguous terms in the contract in a way that bars you from coverage. Unfortunately, bad faith insurance companies get away with unfairly minimizing or denying compensation to claimants every day.

Involving a professional attorney in these situations can lead to a bad faith lawsuit and the potential to receive compensation for your damages. If speaking with your insurance company and/or state commissioner doesn’t resolve your claim, contact a denial of insurance attorney for help.

Posted by highrank at 6:16 pm

Serious Health Issues and Injuries for Oil Field Workers

Friday, January 20, 2017

The oil and gas industry poses significant threats to worker safety in numerous ways – the toxicity of the oil, the hazards of working with heavy machinery, and the risk of fires and explosions, to name a few. From 2003 to 2010, workers died on the job at a rate that was seven times greater than the rate for all U.S. industries. In this time period, 823 oil and gas workers suffered fatal job-related injuries. Despite enhanced Occupational Health and Safety Administration (OSHA) regulations for the oil and gas industry, oil field workers still face exposure to significant health risks while on the clock.

Oil Field Vehicle Accidents

Most fatal injuries result from transportation accidents; particularly when workers have to drive from one work site to another. Drivers often traverse dangerous rural back roads. Fatigue and drowsy driving are significant issues in the oil and gas industry, where workers often work long shifts. When groups of workers pile into one vehicle with a drowsy driver, it can result in multiple deaths. Data shows that about four out of every 10 workers killed on the job in the oil field industry die in highway vehicle accidents.

Today, some oil field companies have installed driver performance monitors in vehicles to track the number of times a driver speeds, swerves, or slams on his/her brakes. Monitoring driver behavior may help reduce the number of oil field worker truck accidents. OSHA has also issued multiple motor vehicle safety worksheets and programs for oil field workers.

Struck-By, Caught-In, Caught-Between

According to OSHA, three out of five on-site deaths in the oil extraction industry result from workers getting struck-by, caught-in, or caught-between objects. Oil field workers work with moving vehicles and heavy equipment, as well as dangerous high-pressure lines. Cranes, derricks, and hoists all pose a threat to worker safety, as do well servicing structures and drilling equipment. Personal protection gear such as the correct foot and headwear may help workers stay safe from these hazards.

Fires and Explosions

Deadly fires and explosions are relatively rare in the oil and gas industry due to stringent safety regulations, but when they do occur, they are extremely deadly. The vapors and fumes of oil are flammable, as are the well gases and hydrogen sulfide wells, trucks, and equipment may produce. Electrical sources, cigarettes, open flames, welding tools, hot surfaces, lightning, and static may all ignite these fumes, causing a devastating fire or explosion. Crude oil vapors can ignite a flash fire, causing widespread burn injury and casualties. Oil field workers may avoid serious injury by wearing flame-resistant clothing, carefully handling flammable liquids, and learning emergency fire safety techniques.

Falls on Oil Fields

Oil field workers operate on high platforms and equipment located hundreds of feet above the ground, such as drilling platforms and masts. Falls from great heights can easily be fatal. If a worker survives a bad fall, he or she will most likely suffer some kind of head, neck, back, or brain injury, as well as broken bones. Workers can prevent falls by following the safety requirements for personal fall arrest systems, as well as avoiding sources of slip, trip, and fall accidents.

Toxic Chemical Exposures

The very nature of the oil and gas industry involves dealing with toxic chemicals and dangerous fumes. Oil field workers encounter toxic fumes every day in the field, putting them at high risk for serious health conditions related to chemical inhalation. Hydraulic fracturing oil field work exposes workers to silica, a naturally occurring mineral that can cause lung problems when inhaled. The rise in hydraulic fracking may lead to an increase in silica-related illnesses such as lung disease. With the proper employee training and OSHA-approved safety gear, workers can avoid chemical-related illnesses.

Posted by highrank at 5:36 pm

NASCAR Spectator Injuries: Worst Fan Injuries/Deaths in NASCAR History

Sunday, January 15, 2017

Since its start in 1947, NASCAR (the National Association for Stock Car Auto Racing) has captured the attention and hearts of fans around the world. From the first NASCAR-sanctioned race in Daytona, Florida in 1948 to today, thousands of spectators have flocked to experience the atmosphere of a real NASCAR race in person. Sadly, several of these races have ended in tragedy due to high-speed car crashes and freak accidents. Here’s an overview of some of the worst fan injuries and deaths in NASCAR history.

Talladega, May 3, 1987

This infamous NASCAR catastrophe resulted in the mandatory use of restrictor plates from then on. Restrictor plates cap engine speeds from climbing too high, keeping all race cars at around the same speeds. In this incident, race car driver Bobby Allison’s vehicle encountered debris, causing the tire to burst. At the speed the car was traveling, the burst tire led to the vehicle becoming airborne and launching into the catch fence, the steel fence separating the crowd of spectators from the racetrack. The vehicle smashed a hole in the fence, and although it did not hit the stands, several fans suffered major injuries from shrapnel and debris. One woman nearly lost an eye from her injuries after this accident.

Daytona, February 18, 2000

After the Bobby Allison crash, NASCAR made restrictor plates mandatory for race cars – but not for trucks, which typically did not reach such high speeds. A notable exception was the accident in Daytona during the premiere of the NASCAR Truck Series. Driver Geoffrey Bodine flipped his racing truck, sending debris and flames into the grandstands. The debris ripped a section of the safety fence – tearing down about 50 feet of wire mesh – and badly injured five fans. Medical records indicate a broken arm, a head injury, and cuts and bruises. The truck burst into flames and the driver also sustained injuries.

Talladega, April 26, 2009

NASCAR driver Carl Edwards blamed his 2009 wreck on the restrictor plates NASCAR put in place for driver and spectator protection. In this accident, Edwards’ car crashed into a perimeter fence in his final lap, injuring seven fans. The vehicle hit the barrier at about 200 miles per hour, going airborne before hitting the fence. While no fan injuries were life threatening, two women did have to get airlifted to the hospital following the accident. In an interview with Edwards after the crash, he stated, “We’ll race like this until we kill somebody,” referring to the restrictor plates.

Pocono, August 5, 2012

One fan tragically died in this freak accident, which surprisingly did not involve a racing vehicle at all. Fans huddled under a tent in Pocono to stay out of the rain during this afternoon race. A bolt of lightning struck the tent, injuring nine spectators and killing one. There was no way for NASCAR to predict or prevent this type of natural disaster.

Daytona, July 6, 2015

The most recent incident involving NASCAR fan injury was the calamitous crash at the Daytona International Speedway. Just as Dale Earnhardt Jr. crossed the finish line in the early morning hours of the race (rain delayed the race by five hours), a horrific accident was happening right behind him. Race car driver Denny Hamlin’s vehicle slid under Austin Dillon’s, propelling it into the catch fence and injuring five spectators. One went to the hospital while others turned down treatment. NASCAR is proud to have no recorded fan deaths related to race car crashes in its history.

When NASCAR patrons and innocent bystanders suffer major injuries during a race, they or their families may be able to sue NASCAR, the racetrack, and/or a third party. Standard sanctioning agreements require racetracks around the country to carry at least $50 million in liability insurance for just such purposes. If you’ve been injured at a racing event or one of the local speedways near Bakersfield, learn your rights and contact a personal injury attorney today.

 

Posted by highrank at 5:14 pm

Welcome to Our Blog

Friday, January 29, 2016

Our blog is being updated, check back later.

Posted by highrank at 9:42 pm