Month: May 2011

Kids and Driveway Safety

Every year thousands of children are injured or killed by drivers accidentally backing over them. These accidents usually occur in residential driveways or in parking lots. Because more people are driving larger, longer and higher vehicles, we are seeing more of these back-over accidents. Tragically, a parent or close relative is behind the wheel in more than 70 percent of such incidents which involve children as young as 12 months up to 14 years of age.

Tips for Keeping Kids Safe:Always assume children could be present, and carefully check the street, driveway, and the area around your vehicle before backing out. Another good idea is to walk around and behind your vehicle prior to moving it.

  • When backing up, always know where all children are and have them stay in your full view and away from your vehicle.
  • Always look behind as you back out S-L-O-W-L-Y with your windows rolled down to listen for children who may have dashed behind your vehicle suddenly- and be prepared to stop!
  • Use extreme care whenever you back up. If you’re driving an SUV or truck, remember that the blind spot behind your vehicle can be especially large.
  • Never leave children alone in or around cars, not even for one minute.
  • Trim landscaping around driveways to remove any visual obstructions.
  • Make sure all children passengers have left the car after it is parked.
  • Keep vehicles locked at all times, even in the garage or driveway and always set the parking brake.
  • Keys and/or remote openers should never be left within reach of children.
  • Hold your child’s hand firmly while walking from a car into a building.
  • Never let your child walk or run ahead of you to anyplace where cars are.
  • Make your driveway a toy-free zone. Never allow any toys, bikes, chalks or any type of equipment to remain on the driveway.
  • Teach children not to play in, under, or around vehicles- ever.
  • Avoid making your driveway a ‘playground.’ If you do allow children in this area, make sure that it’s only when there are no vehicles present.
  • Teach your children that parked vehicles might move.

This list may seem long, but it is not exhaustive. Here at Berglund & Johnson we assist folks daily in dealing with personal injuries and other traumatic events. Our years of experience have taught us the value of being prepared. That is why we at Berglund & Johnson will continue to provide any information that could be useful to our clients and friends for their safety.

What is Character

Wikipedia has several definitions, but we like this one best: an evaluation of a particular individual’s moral qualities.

Character is the constellation of traits that we demonstrate on a consistent basis.

Character is something you show when people aren’t watching.

Your character can be influenced by upbringing, culture, world view, religion and many other factors.

The American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language defines character in several ways, using words like moral or ethical strength; attributes, traits or abilities; and competency, dependability and reputation.

Today, unfortunately, character is often confused with success. Success seems to be the only thing that counts, and success is often measured by money and possessions. How you acquired that “success” doesn’t seem to be important. That is why there is such turmoil in our society and the world. Character has been forgotten or ignored.

Injured on the Job?

According to the Occupational Safety and Health Organization (OSHA), work-related accidents and illnesses claim over two million lives every year. Over 250 million accidents in the workplace cause victims to miss up three days of work.

Construction sites are one of the most hazardous job locations in the United States. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, 350,000 suffered disabling injuries with another 1,000 people dying in 1995. More than 30 percent of injuries and fatalities are due to falls from defective ladders or scaffolds. That’s why construction companies and all contractors and subcontractors must ensure employees work in safe conditions, inform them of inherent job hazards, provide safety training, and enforce compliance with safety regulations.

A construction worker’s safety also depends heavily on the condition of their equipment. Manufacturers are responsible for design and production defects in their equipment. Tools and structures necessary for construction must meet basic safety requirements. Injuries caused by failure of equipment may be eligible for compensation from the manufacturer under laws for defective products.

At time, workers’ compensation alone will not cover all of an injured employee’s expenses, particularly if the injuries were serious and debilitating. In these cases, the personal injury lawyers at Berglund & Johnson will investigate the liability of a negligent third party. Third parties can include manufacturers of defective products, a supervising subcontractor or the owner or others responsible for the jobsite.

Should you require assistance with a job-related injury, please contact us for an immediate free evaluation of your situation. It is critical after a workplace accident that evidence be preserved and the responsible third-party located right away.