The stunt pulled off by Volkswagen, equipping its diesel vehicles with a defeat device, a computer software that is capable of automatically altering its vehicle’s engine operation and speed if it is being tested, was definitely a bold move. However, cheating its way into US market by making it appear that its cars produced clean diesel was a clear breach of public trust and an endangerment of public health, according to the US Justice Department’s Environment and Natural Resources Division.
Cars that run on diesel may be the future of vehicles driven on American roads and highways; for the meantime, however, this is not an immediately foreseeable possibility due to the greater human health and environmental hazards produced by diesel.
While cars running on diesel engine abound in Europe, in the US these only made up about 3.2% of the total auto sales in the year 2012. This is because though diesel is 20% to 40% more efficient than gasoline, it is known to produce particulate matter and nitrogen oxide (NOx) which are more toxic than carbon dioxide, the global-warming gas emitted by gasoline-run engines.
The question that may pop up here is how is it that cars and trucks that use diesel, despite the threat of nitrogen oxide, are allowed to continue running on US roads and highways whereas cars produced by Volkswagen, which number close to half a million, have to be recalled? The answer, according to the US Department of Energy, is the use of ultra-low sulfur diesel fuel which greatly reduces the stinky, sooty substance that diesel usually emits; of course, there is also the fact that carmakers have found a very effective means of trapping the type of air pollution emitted by diesel. Volkswagen, it seems is not aware of these, otherwise, it would have resorted to any of these two rather than resort to cheating – by equipping its diesel cars with a defeat device designed to reduce the emission of nitrogen oxides during testing. Outside a controlled environment, however, Volkswagen diesel cars are said to be emitting pollutants that are 10% to 40% higher than the limit set by the Environmental Protection Agency-enforced Clean Air Act.
Volkswagen diesel cars can definitely assure fuel economy and more mileage; but one other thing it has also assured is the buildup of rage among car owners and environmentalists. A Volkswagen emissions fraud lawyer may be able to explain to owners of cars who have been wronged by Volkswagen’s act of consumer fraud, how they may be able to hold the company accountable for the betrayal of their trust.read more
Pulmonary embolism is a severe risk for those who suffer from blood clots in other areas of the body. A leading cause of death, pulmonary embolism can occur if these blood clots migrate to the lungs. Due to the severe risks of this, IVC filters were created. These filters have been used since the 1970’s and are designed to catch blood clots with its cage-like legs before they can travel to the lungs. The device and its model have steadily increased since its inception, with more than 259,000 filters being used by the year 2012.
However, the very device used to prevent pulmonary embolisms in individuals suffering from deep venous thrombosis has been connected to deadly symptoms itself. The Bard G2 IVC Filter has been linked to 27 deaths and 300 injuries since its inception in 2005. While some minor symptoms can occur such as a headaches and chest pain, according to the website of Habush, Habush, and Rottier, they may be signs of deadlier consequences. Death has been linked to the filter mainly through migration or fracture of the device. When the legs of the filter break off, they often travel through the blood stream to other organs of the body, puncturing them. The device often migrates away from where it was surgically implanted as well, rendering the filter ineffective and leading to deadly consequences. Many individuals can also suffer severe heart injuries if the device migrates or breaks off near the heart, possibly leading to death.
The devastating and life-changing consequences of the device continue to grow in number as individuals are still dealing with the effects of the filter. Unfortunately, in the worst cases, the complications associated with the filter can lead to death, making it vital to be aware of the risks of the filter. If you have been implanted with a Bard G2 IVC Filter, contact a lawyer to learn more about your options.read more
To act with responsibility so as not to put anyone’s life in danger is both a moral and legal duty of any person. All human laws basically point to this, promoting and commanding at the same time respect for properties and, most importantly, human life.
It is for such reason why manufacturers of consumer goods have standards to comply with, why health care experts, like doctors, go through rigorous study and training, and pursue continuous growth, why laws that mandate the creation of a safe and healthy working environment have been passed, and why drivers, especially of commercial vehicles, are required to enroll in professional driving schools where they will learn and develop the skills necessary for safe driving.
Negligence or recklessness, however, continue to be the dominant behavior of so many people, choosing the excitement of taking risks over the safety of all those around them. Thus, because of these negligent or reckless acts, millions of accidents happen every year, accidents that injure millions of people and claim thousands of innocent lives. These injuries and loss of lives usually result from medical malpractice, car, truck, motorcycle or bicycle accidents, pedestrian accidents, defective products, poorly maintained premises, and workplace accidents.
Under the law, negligence has one presupposed factor: strict liability. This presupposed factor legally holds the negligent individual totally accountable for whatever result his/her negligent behavior leads to, whether injury of loss of life.
In the event of death, the victim’s surviving family, legally called the “real parties in interest,” may file a wrongful death claim or lawsuit through its chosen representative (may be a lawyer or any family member). The “real parties in interest,” first and foremost, refers to the dead victim’s, or decedent’s, husband/wife and children, whether biological or adopted). If the decedent was unmarried then the parents are the first in line. If the parents, however, are already dead, then some states consider the following persons as “real parties in interest”:
- Those who were financially dependent on the victim, such as a life partner or a putative spouse. A putative spouse is someone who sincerely believes that he/she and the decedent were married
- Grandparents and siblings
- Any person whom the decedent cared for or supported while he/she was still alive, but who will definitely suffer financially due to the victim’s untimely death.
The victim’s untimely death can certainly cause devastating financial effects to his/her family and recognized dependents, making the need for compensation an immediate matter. While the law allows any family member to be the (family’s) representative, if this person lacks knowledge about the laws governing wrongful death and wrongful death claims, then it will do much good for the family to seek the help of a seasoned wrongful death lawyer, such as one from Louisville.read more
Studies show that polychlorinated biphenyls or PCBs are definitely pollutants, and they are definitely toxic. Various lab animals exposed to varying levels of PCBs demonstrated adverse health effects, which were fatal at high doses. There are no conclusive study on humans as of yet, but it would be safe to infer that PCB exposure will also have deleterious, possibly carcinogenic, effects.
PCBs are synthetic organic compounds of chlorine and benzene concocted by German scientists in 1881. It served as a coolant for machines and insulation for electrical components. Swann Chemical Company first produced the PCBs in North America in 1929. Monsanto PCBs came into being when Monsanto Company took over production from Swann in 1935, and began selling PCBs under the brand Aroclor in the US. PCBs are persistent in nature, and released in the environment through use and manufacture.
There are 209 types of PCBs and they have various levels of toxicity, apparently dependent on how many chlorine atoms attach to the two benzene rings (biphenyls) in a PCB molecule. The more chlorine atoms, the less soluble it is in water. There are 7 PCB types that were widely used in North America until 1979, when the US Congress halted the production of PCBs.
The issues with PCBs are due mainly to its similarity in structure and toxic modality to dioxins, which are persistent organic pollutants. They get into everything: the soil, the water, and the air. They are very hard to get rid of, and so the risk of exposure is very high. Dioxins and PCBs are absorbed into the fatty tissue of animals, including humans, and affect vital organs.
PCBs are excellent for industrial applications, because they are very stable and resistant to degradation. However, this also makes them very dangerous to humans and the environment in general. Direct exposure is not necessary: a husband can bring it home on his clothes and affect his wife and children; a previously exposed mother can pass the PCBs in her body on to a breastfeeding infant. While there is no definite proof yet that PCBs are harmful to humans, scientists believe that it is only a matter of time before the first toxic exposure victims step forward.read more
Are you interested in film, music, and interactive? Then surely you have already heard about the South by Southwest (SXSW) Festival in Austin?
Well, just in case you haven’t – SXSW is a week-long festival that occurs in Austin, Texas. This event has been going on since 1987, during a time when Austin was not even considered as one of the top 20 major markets! However, with its great potential and fair metropolitan, it was only ever the perfect venue for such a festival! Not to mention that place has been the place to be for a party – dating as far back as the 19th century!
This March, many celebrities will be in attendance – as well as musical groups and over a hundred worldwide premieres on site! These ten days are a promise of collaboration and celebration of each other’s accomplishments as tens of thousands of artists from all over the world come together in order to share their work, have their voices be heard? There are meet-ups with experts and enthusiasts galore as this really is the place to be, if film, music, and interactive is your scene!
What better way than to arrive in style via a limousine ride from the Austin airport? Every comfort and every luxury is one you have well-deserved and seeing as traffic is abominable at busy times around Austin, such as this, then parking is only ever going to be a bigger nightmare. There is so much to do and so many things to see and people to meet at SXSW; do you really want that time hindered by something so easily corrected such as parking? This is not a time to sacrifice comfort as these are times and experiences you will want to remember for the rest of your life and in these times, you too are a star and deserve all the things that come with it!read more
Was your child born with a cleft lip, cleft palate, or congenital heart defect (CHD)? These are birth defects that are present collectively in more than 47,000 newborns in the US every year, with CHD being the most common. In most cases, the causes of these birth defects are unknown, and parents are encouraged to look upon it as nothing more than the roll of the dice. However, there are studies into these types of birth defects that link them to the use of certain drugs. One of these is Zofran (ondansetron) manufactured by GlaxoSmithKline.
Zofran is a powerful antiemetic (prevents nausea) that blocks 5-HT3 receptors in the central nervous system and the gastrointestinal tract. It is customarily prescribed as per Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approval for the prevention of severe nausea in patients undergoing chemotherapy or radiation therapy (using cytotoxic drugs) and post-surgery. In some cases where morning sickness is so severe that the mother is put in danger of severe dehydration and electrolyte imbalance from constant vomiting (hyperemesis gravidarium), she may be prescribed with Zofran or its generic counterparts.
The problem with this is Zofran is not approved for use in pregnant women. In fact, all antiemetics are not recommended for use during pregnancy because there are not enough studies to validate any risk-benefit analysis. However, when severe morning sickness threatens the health of the mother and child, physicians have no choice but to prescribe one. There are no warnings published by the manufacturer that Zofran poses a greater risk of birth defects to the developing fetus than any other antiemetic, so physicians have no reason to believe that it will harm the child. Ongoing studies indicate that Zofran may in fact be particularly prone to increase the risk of birth defects.
If you have been prescribed with Zofran and your child is born with a birth defect, you may want to consider filing a Zofran lawsuit. The manufacturer knew or should have known that it would pose unreasonable dangers to your child, and should have provided adequate warning to doctors and the public against its use. Contact a dangerous drugs lawyer in your state to explore your legal options in such cases.read more
Making your home pretty may make you sick, too.
Thousands of homeowners in the US have been adversely affected from exposure to drywall imported from China. More than 550 million pounds of the product was brought in between 2004 and 2007 to offset the shortage caused by the real estate boom and the hurricanes that destroyed thousands of homes. Drywall is primarily used for interior walls and ceilings and typically gypsum plaster encased between thick sheets of paper
An investigation was launched by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to determine if the Chinese drywall was indeed toxic, and results showed that it contained high levels of pyrite. Pyrite is an iron sulfide that is commonly referred to as “fool’s gold” because of its color, and may account for high levels of the following chemicals in affected homes:
- Carbon disulfide
- Hydrogen sulfide
- Iron disulfide
- Sulfur dioxide
- Sulfuric acid
These chemicals at significant levels can lead to adverse health effects and extensive property damage, primarily by corroding metal. Those who were exposed to these chemicals, especially sulfur, suffered nausea, breathing difficulty, eye irritation, and chest pain within hours. And because these drywalls were installed in homes, thousands of people were exposed for extended periods which led to asthma, dizziness, memory loss, irritability, chronic fatigue, insomnia, and loss of appetite.
The most affected states were those with high humidity, but any home where the contaminated Chinese drywall is installed such as those in Nashville will likely have some level of toxicity. Homeowners should replace them if they notice a rotten egg smell emanating from it or corrosion in metals in contact with a particular drywall.
According to the website of a Tennessee personal injury lawyer, if your health or home has already been seriously affected by contaminated Chinese drywall, you may be able to file a claim against the responsible party. Contact a toxic exposure lawyer in your area for more information.read more
Though nobody likes to entertain the thought of needing an attorney, it is an unfortunate fact that most people will need the services of a legal professional at least once in their lifetime. As the world gets more complicated, this possibility increases. Rather than waiting until an emergency arises, establish a relationship with an attorney now. Read some tips here on how to do that.
When you truly need a lawyer who specializes in a specific field, choose one. While you may have a lawyer who you trust implicitly, they may not know enough to truly handle your case in a manner which leads to a positive outcome. Ask that lawyer for who they might recommend instead.
A lawyer who specializes in a specific issue will be an advantage for you. Specialized lawyers can be more expensive but these lawyers have extensive experience with cases like yours. You should avoid lawyers who spend most of their revenue on promoting their services and rely on their good reputation and results instead.
A good tip if you’re looking to hire a lawyer is to try to find the right lawyer for the task you need. If you’re simply wanting to draw up a contract, hiring a big shot, corporate lawyer is probably overkill and is just going to cost you a lot more.
You should establish a budget before you start looking for a lawyer. Go over your finances and assess how much you can afford to spend on a lawyer. You should not let lawyers know about your budget when you ask for quotes but this is a good way to narrow down your research. Lost of lawyers only charge you if they win your case, according to http://www.abelinjurylawyers.com, so that can be something to look for as well.
You are now aware of the need to protect yourself with legal council way before there is an urgency that leaves you vulnerable. Use the insights here to wisely choose an attorney who will have your back when the chips are down. Then relax and know that your are covered.read more
Dealing with personal injury legal matters isn’t fun, but it can help later on. You can also help others to be protected in the long run. This article is going to give you advice if you don’t know how to proceed.
When in a car accident, write down what happened as soon as you are safe to do so. For example, what you were doing when it happened, how you are hurt, what damage there is to your car, what damage there is to the other car, and what you think caused the accident or how the other driver was at fault.
Make sure that you hire an attorney that specializes in personal injury law, like those at the Abel Law Firm http://www.abellawfirm.com/practice-areas/personal-injury/. There are lawyers out there who practice several types of law. It is in your best interest to find one who only practices this type of law. It will increase your chances of success since your attorney will know exactly what he is doing.
Make sure that you gather all of the information you can from anyone that was involved in your injury. This means that you should get the addresses, names and phone numbers of the party that injured you as well as any witnesses that were on the scene. You should also take note of anything that is said during the time of the accident.
Lots of shady attorneys run lots of ads, and you should think twice about responding to them. Not only do they have poor reputations, how can you know who they truly are? You should always meet a lawyer in-person before deciding to use them for representation.
It’s in your best interests to go through the temporary difficulties of dealing with doctors and lawyers in pursuing your personal injury case. Hopefully, you are walking away from this article much more knowledgeable than when you started reading it. Avoid missing court, listen to what your lawyer says, and you should prevail.read more
Millions of people are affected by personal injury cases each year. If you have endured long hours of suffering, you certainly deserve compensation for your troubles. Knowledge is power when it comes to reaching a fair settlement. The following article was written to help you understand the personal injury settlement process and to help you seek out a fair attorney.
If you believe you may have grounds for a personal injury case, see a physician immediately. In cases where there is a pharmaceutical tort, such as with Yaz, Risperdal, or testosterone supplements, it’s important that your information be documented as soon as possible. It will be used as valuable evidence later, but by the time you have your day in court, the injuries may have healed and you will have no proof of them.
Make sure that you hire an attorney that specializes in personal injury law. There are lawyers out there who practice several types of law. It is in your best interest to find one who only practices this type of law. It will increase your chances of success since your attorney will know exactly what he is doing.
Get out of your vehicle and take photographs of the scene from several different angles. You should take pictures of your vehicle and that of the other party. This is important since it will prove the damages were not exaggerated by you or the person you got into the accident with.
Never try to negotiate with an at-fault party or their insurance company without having an attorney present. They may try to take advantage of your lack of legal knowledge to make you an unfair offer. Even if you feel like you are confident and can represent yourself, call a lawyer and have them present at the time.
When choosing a personal injury lawyer, pay special attention to the size of their firm. Generally, larger firms mean that more than one lawyer may work on your case. These are usually Associate Attorneys who are trying to gain some legal experience, while having a senior attorney oversee and make the final decisions. Smaller firms can usually provide better management by having fewer people working on a case. Feel free to ask if other attorneys will be working on your case in any firm you’re interested in.
Your attorney might be the one doing most of the work when it comes to your personal injury case, but you can still be knowledgeable. It is important that you keep in mind all of the important information that was discussed in this article. By doing so, you will ensure you are fairly compensated!read more