Birmingham Legal Blog

Why do roofers have such a high death rate?

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, roofers have one of the most dangerous jobs in America.  The data shows that there are 47.4 roofer deaths per 100,000 workers. This is much higher than the rate of many other construction worker deaths, which are nearly 17 deaths per 100,000 workers.

While all construction work is extremely dangerous, roofers are at increased risk for injury and death because they work at elevated heights. Whether it’s a commercial or residential building, roofers face hazards such as:

  • Falling off the roof
  • Falling off ladders or scaffolds
  • Ladders and scaffolding collapsing due to defects, wear and tear, or improper assembly
  • Lack of safety equipment and procedures

Nursing home deaths a grim reminder of how we treat the elderly

Hurricanes Harvey and Irma impacted millions of people across the U.S., but one of the groups that was most severely affected is the elderly, particularly those in nursing homes. While nursing home neglect is all too common in our country, the egregious incidents caused by the hurricanes' power outages and flooding remind us that the elderly need our support and protection.

The flooding in Texas from Hurricane Harvey caused some entire nursing home populations to require rescue by boat. Because nursing home residents are overwhelmingly vulnerable to physical and mental injuries, this type of rescue is especially dangerous for them.

Nurses are facing too much violence from patients

Most of us don’t think of nursing as a dangerous profession, but unfortunately, nurses in many places face more violence on the job than law enforcement personnel and prison guards. It has become an epidemic in American hospitals and clinics. Nurses’ aides and home health care workers are also at risk for patient violence and other injuries.

A recent survey found that over 75 percent of nurses report being abused verbally and physically just for trying to do their job. Nurses can suffer many types of abuse from patients, including:

  • Verbal abuse
  • Kicking and hitting
  • Scratching
  • Stabbing
  • Sexual assault
  • Being threatened with guns

Vegetable recall affecting Alabama residents

Southeastern Grocers issued a recall of several pre-cut vegetable products sold at Winn-Dixie, BI-LO and Fresco y Mas. The products are being recalled because of the possibility of Listeria. You can get a refund if you return the vegetables to the store where you purchased them.

Did you buy one of these recalled products? The recall includes:

  • 10 oz. packages of SEG Stir Fry Vegetables
  • 6 oz. packages of SEG Tri Pepper Dice
  • 12 oz. packages of SEG Fajita Blend
  • 23 oz. packages of SEG Vegetable Kabob

Watch for signs of eye damage after the eclipse

Most adults understood the potential dangers of looking at the recent eclipse without using special glasses or telescopes. Getting kids to understand this—and keep the glasses on—can be a different story, however.

Find out what type of damage staring at the sun during an eclipse can cause. Then you’ll be prepared if your children show signs of eye damage in the next few days.

Over 2.6 million kids are injured playing sports each year

With school back in session, so are youth sports. Younger children and teens are likely already attending practice for sports such as football, soccer and cross-country. It’s important for parents and coaches to understand how to protect kids in practices and games.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), every year there are over 2.6 million sports and recreation injuries to children. These numbers only cover children who were taken to the emergency room for their injuries. It is possible that the total is higher due to children who weren’t immediately treated and instead saw their own doctor for treatment.

Should police be able to look at your phone after an accident?

Laws banning or restricting cellphone use and texting while driving are not stopping people from engaging in these risky behaviors. Consequently, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo is having his Traffic Safety Committee look into new technology that would tell police whether someone was using their cellphone before an accident. Not surprisingly, there is already concern about whether this technology—the textalyzer—would violate people’s civil rights.

Under current law, law enforcement typically has to have a search warrant to look at a cellphone. While the manufacturer claims that the textalyzer would not reveal the content of texts or calls, many people still feel like this is a dangerous idea.

Manufacturer recalls iPhone cases that cause burns

According to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, 24 people worldwide reported suffering chemical burns or skin irritation from their liquid glitter iPhone cases. Of these 24 people, 19 are from the U.S.

If the phone case breaks or develops cracks, the liquid inside can leak and cause injuries where it touches the skin. The injuries that have been reported at this point range from mild skin irritation and blisters to swelling and chemical burns that leave people permanently scarred. 

Is your car on the Deadliest Car list?

We all want to think that our cars are safe, but are they? A new study by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) ranked the 20 safest and deadliest cars. Perhaps not surprisingly, their study shows that smaller cars tend to be more dangerous than larger vehicles.

Small cars simply do not have structures that are sturdy enough to protect passengers in a collision. In accidents with larger vehicles, small cars almost always suffer more damage—and so do their passengers.

Two Crash Victims Win at Alabama Supreme Court

Consumer-friendly decisions from the Alabama Supreme Court have not been that common in recent years. So, we notice when Alabama's highest court comes down solidly on the side of an injured party. As they did last week when the Court affirmed substantial verdicts favoring a teen-age girl who was severely burned in a car wreck and the family of another teen-age girl who died from the injuries she sustained in the same wreck.

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Birmingham Office: 205-879-1981
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Fax: 205-879-1986