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Articles Tagged with Wrongful Death

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https://www.texasinjurylawyersblog.com/files/2020/05/Screen-Shot-2020-05-26-at-1.22.28-PM.pngMay 23, 2020:  San Antonio, TEXAS–The crash happened around 5:30 a.m. Friday on Interstate 10 near the Dominion on the north side of San Antonio.  Justin Antwan Jackson, 29, the driver of the 18-wheeler, involved in the incident is now charged with failure to Stop and Render Aid after his truck rear-ended a red Ford Fiesta that was stalled on US I-10.  

The driver of the car, Donna Falkenberg, 46, was killed in the crash. She was pronounced dead at the scene.  San Antonio Police said she was not wearing a seat belt.

According to an arrest affidavit, Jackson was traveling southbound in the right-most lane when it neared the stalled Ford Fiesta, which had on its hazard lights.  Jackson told police that he tried to avoid another vehicle that appeared to be crossing into the lane next to him and did not see the Ford until the crash was unavoidable.

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https://www.texasinjurylawyersblog.com/files/2020/05/Screen-Shot-2020-05-23-at-1.26.53-PM.pngMay 21, 2020:  HOUSTON — Water safety advocates and local authorities want you to be careful around the water this Memorial Day weekend.  Drowning is the leading cause of unintentional death in kids ages 1-4.  The coronavirus pandemic is making it worse.

“Because of people sheltering in place at home, and kids having greater access to water with supervision changes, kids not being in school, parents and caregivers trying to work from home,” says Alissa Magrum of the Texas Drowning Prevention Alliance.

Magrum says child drownings started happening earlier this year because of stay-at-home orders, and now she worries about this holiday weekend.  “It’s so hot, and people are going to be going to the beaches, getting to the lakes, getting to any kind of water,” she says.

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photo-of-boy-swinging-over-body-of-water-2413238-scaledEvery year, Texans enjoy the outdoors by relaxing and enjoying time at the beach, lake or rivers here in our state.  A beautiful breeze and the refreshing water in makes for a relaxing day in the sun.  Despite the benefits and many pleasures these outdoor bodies of water provide to its users, there are also risks involved.
Sadly, too many of these excursions end in tragedy.  Beaches, lakes and rivers drownings (also known as open water drownings), boating accidents, and other mishaps happen all too often. 

Many different circumstances can contribute to an open water drowning accident.  Careless play in the water, such as jokingly holding somebody under the water without intending harm, can lead to a drowning.  Somebody could be driving a watercraft and hit a swimmer, causing them to drown.  Safety gear could fail.  

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https://www.texasinjurylawyersblog.com/files/2020/04/Screen-Shot-2020-04-29-at-3.22.13-PM.pngFORT BEND COUNTY, Texas (KTRK) — A 5-year-old Sugarland boy died after being found unresponsive in a pool at an apartment complex off of Old Richmond Road near West Bellfort.

The incident happened Tuesday April 28th when the child got out of the parents apartment undetected and climbed over the fence surrounding the pool area and into the water.  According to authorities, the boy was in the water for about 15 minutes before the parents found him.  His father retrieved him from the bottom of the pool and proceeded to give CPR which was unsuccessful.

There were cameras placed around the pool by the apartment complex and the footage show the boy climbing the fence and going into the water.

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https://www.texasinjurylawyersblog.com/files/2020/04/Screen-Shot-2020-04-24-at-2.12.40-PM.pngWednesday, April 22, 2020, Houston:  Police report a driver was killed when he tried to pass an 18-wheeler that was reversing along a commercial street Wednesday in southeast Houston. The big rig was facing southbound in the northbound lane of Nunn Street near Lindbergh Street around 3 p.m. when its driver started driving in reverse, according to Houston police. At some point, the big rig driver started to drift into the southbound lane while still in reverse, according to police.

At the same time, a 34-year-old man driving a Cadillac DTS was southbound on Nunn and attempted to pass the truck on the right but clipped the back-right corner of the trailer, police said. Witnesses said the Cadillac driver appeared to be driving at a high speed when he struck the trailer.

The force of the crash ripped the roof off the Cadillac, which landed about 30 feet away from the car. Firefighters had to use special tools to pry the rest of the car open to pull the driver out.

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https://www.texasinjurylawyersblog.com/files/2020/04/Screen-Shot-2020-04-22-at-7.17.42-PM.png
Recently, the Supreme Court of Texas issued its opinion in a workers’ compensation appeal, addressing whether a sheriff who died in his patrol car was entitled to benefits. The deputy’s widow filed the lawsuit after her husband died when a wheel from another car came loose and smashed through the man’s patrol car windshield.

The deputy’s wife presented evidence that at the time of his death, the man was a sergeant with the El Paso Sheriff’s Department. On the night of the accident, the man was working an extra-duty assignment for the University of Texas. The sheriff’s employment policy defines this type of work as “secondary employment, which the employee may use actual law enforcement powers”. Generally, the department does not allow employees to use their patrol cars for off-duty work; however, they may be used for extra-duty work with approval. After the man’s death, his wife filed a claim for workers’ compensation benefits, which the county denied. The county argued that the man was not within the course and scope of his employment at the time of the collision.

Under Texas law, courts have held that questions regarding whether an officer is off duty does not necessarily determine whether their behavior was within the scope of their employment. It is especially nebulous because peace officers are always officers, even while they are off-duty. Plaintiffs in these cases must meet two main criteria to establish that their activity was within the “course and scope of employment”, the activity must:

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https://www.texasinjurylawyersblog.com/files/2020/04/Screen-Shot-2020-04-15-at-12.08.45-PM.pngSaturday, April 11, 2020:  ABILENE, Texas – A Breckenridge man died in a one-vehicle crash early Saturday morning. The accident happened in northwest Taylor County near Trent. “The vehicle went off the west part of the road, struck a bridge, and fell off landing on a concrete barrier below the bridge in the median of IH-20.

A passenger, Raymond Santos Baladez, male, 30 was pronounced dead at the scene. According to the Texas Department of Public Safety, Mr. Santos was not wearing a seatbelt at the time of the accident.

The driver of the vehicle, a Ford F150, a 30 year old male also from Breckenridge sustained serious injuries and a 33 year old female passenger from Anson, Texas received what are described as stable injuries. Both of these persons along with the deceased Mr. Baladez were not wearing seat belts.   A minor 14 year old female passenger also of Anson was the only person wearing a seatbelt sustained injuries also. All were taken to Hendrick Medical Center for treatment. Preliminary crash report shows the vehicle was traveling North on BI-20 where it went around a curve where the road intersects with a bridge over IH-20. “The vehicle went off the West part of the road, struck a bridge, and fell off landing on a concrete barrier below the bridge in the median of IH-20.”

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https://www.texasinjurylawyersblog.com/files/2020/04/Screen-Shot-2020-04-12-at-12.56.57-PM.pngApril 12, 2020, Houston:  Two people were killed after an Amazon tractor-trailer smashed into several vehicles that were stopped on a Houston North freeway early Friday April 10th due to previous collisions, according to the Harris County Sheriff’s Office.

An SUV towing a trailer driven by Anthony Alvarado, 22, with his wife, their children, ages 1 and 3, got a flat tire. While trying to exit the highway, a Mazda 3 sedan hit the trailer and ended up sideways in traffic.  A third vehicle, a Silverado pickup truck driven by Tyler Vail, 29, came up to the crash and while trying to avoid the accident ended up colliding with a barrier on the freeway coming to a stop in the middle lane. 

During this time the driver of the Mazda and the SUV’s passenger got out of their vehicles.  It was also at this time that Abdullah Baidas, 23, who was driving a Chevrolet SUV, stopped to help and was out of his SUV and on the freeway.  Then an Amazon tractor-trailer driven Cody Munson, 56, coming up on the scene swerved to avoid but ended up striking all of the vehicles involved and pinning both the driver of the Mazda and the passenger of the SUV and killing them instantly.  Abdullah Baidas avoided being struck by the Amazon truck by jumping off of the overpass 10 to 15 feet where he suffered minor injuries authorities said.  The 2 young children only suffered minor injuries due to being safely strapped into their car seats.  The status of the Amazon driver, Mr. Munson; pickup driver, Mr. Vail; and SUV driver, Mr. Alvarado are unknown at this time.

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Jesse Guerra, Attorney, Carabin Shaw

April 10, 2020  There is no mercy for the elderly in nursing homes nationwide. The pandemic has no boundaries or limits regarding who it preys on and where. The elderly are highly susceptible to contracting the Coronavirus, better known as CV-19 worldwide.  Recent events in Texas and other places have exposed dangers to the aged population who are residents at assisted living facilities.  

As would be expected, many elderly residents already rely on oxygen systems to support their lifestyles and sustain their quality of life on a daily basis. The recovery of an elderly person versus a younger healthier individual is less likely given their age and declining health conditions.  

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aluminum-black-and-white-business-cart-264529-scaledJesse Guerra, Attorney, Carabin Shaw

 While people are rushing to essential retail outlets to buy food and supplies for their families, workers in these high volume retailers seem to be at a higher risk of developing Covid 19 symptoms while working to meet consumer needs. Workers in essential retail giants, supermarkets, and consumer product delivery businesses are expected to work long hours to keep shelves stocked, deliveries fulfilled and businesses operational. 

The demands for basic items are far outstripping the supply chain nationwide. A valid question is surfacing as to what efforts companies and corporations are making to keep the workplace safe. Employers have a legal duty to provide a reasonably safe working environment for all employees. Although much has been done to ensure that the spread of the virus in these environments is limited to keep customers safe, employees still remain vulnerable and face greater exposure. 

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