Tag Archives: Kansas Personal Injury Lawyer

Kansas Personal Injury Lawyer Discusses Top Ways to Make 2017 a Safe Year for Driving

A recent article in the Kansas City Star reported that over the New Year’s holiday weekend, an average of 31 individuals are killed across the nation each day of the holiday in drunk driving accidents. That means, within the span of approximately 48 hours, over 60 individuals lose their lives in collisions caused by intoxicated drivers – more than one per hour. While statistics and past experience might suggest that drunk driving in Kansas will continue through 2017, there is no reason this must be the case. Like other bad driving behaviors that can lead to traffic injuries and deaths, drinking and driving is a choice. This year can be safer for you – and your family – if you decide to practice safe behaviors such as:

  • Wearing your seatbelt each and every time you travel. Statistics show that you are more likely to survive a serious traffic collision – and survive with fewer catastrophic injuries – if you wear a seatbelt. Statistics from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention suggest that seat belts saved approximately 12,800 lives in 2014 alone and can reduce the chance of injury or death by approximately half. Not only should you wear a seatbelt, but you should encourage your passengers and your children to wear a seatbelt at all times as well.
  • Do Not Drive While Drunk … or While Drowsy … or While Distracted. While attention is paid to drunk driving during the holidays, distracted driving and drowsy driving (that is, driving with too little sleep) are just as dangerous as consuming alcohol and/or drugs before driving. Besides refusing to drink or use drugs before driving, make sure you get enough sleep before driving (even for short trips) and put your cellphone away before embarking on your trip.  In addition, avoid the temptation to eat while you are driving – foods such as tacos, pizza, soups, and other similar foods require a great deal of attention and focus to safely eat. Therefore, you should find a safe place to stop your car and consume your meal before continuing on your way.
  • Drive defensively. Although it is tempting to violate traffic laws or drive in an aggressive manner to get to your destination faster, the few seconds or minutes you might save on your travel time are not worth the increased risk of a traffic collision that speeding, failing to give other vehicles a proper signal or space when passing, and/or deliberately or inadvertently violating traffic laws can create.
  • Take action against other negligent or careless drivers. If you do happen to be involved in a car crash caused by another driver who is driving in a careless manner, take swift action to protect your rights by speaking with a Kansas car wreck attorney. The benefits you receive from an insurance claim settlement may not be sufficient to cover all of your losses and expenses, and there is no reason you ought to bear the financial burden of your medical bills, lost wages, and other losses when these are caused by another’s negligence.

While these behaviors may not completely insulate you from all traffic crashes, your risk of being involved in an injury collision or fatal accident decreases when you decide to drive safely. Michael R. Lawless is dedicated to helping Kansas drivers remain safe and recover compensation for their injuries when they are hurt in car crashes caused by other drivers’ unsafe driving behavior. Contact Kansas Personal Injury Lawyer Michael R. Lawless’s firm today by calling (800) 734-3771 to discuss your car accident and the rights you may be able to exercise.


Kansas Personal Injury Lawyer Describes the Most Common Motorcycle Injuries

In addition to bicyclists, the summer months also bring out motorcyclists. Kansas’ highways (especially in the more rural area) are best experienced by motorcycle (not to mention, the wind is a great way to keep cool on hot summer days. But just as motorcycling can be fun and exhilarating, it can also be dangerous. Because of the construction of motorcycles and the manner in which they are ridden, motorcyclists are more likely to suffer certain injuries than the occupants of a passenger car. These injuries include:

  • Pelvic injuries: Of course, a motorcyclist rides a motorcycle by straddling the bike. A sudden stop or collision can cause the bike to slam against the rider’s pelvis and/or legs, causing broken bones or serious bruising. Aside from being painful, these injuries can result in significant mobility challenges. Not only this, if a motorcyclist’s reproductive organs are not sufficiently protected, pelvic injuries can result in serious damage to these body parts as well. These injuries can negatively impact the person’s ability to procreate or engage in physical relations with others.
  • “Road rash”: When a motorcyclist is thrown from his or her motorcycle and skids across the road or other hard surface, the motorcyclist can suffer severe abrasions to any exposed skin. Even skin that is covered by clothing can skill be affected if the clothing is not thick enough or made to protect against skid-related injuries. These severe abrasions are most commonly referred to as “road rash.” “Road rash” is much more serious than the “rug burn” children often suffer during play. Road rash can damage skin and muscle tissue and require extensive and multiple surgeries to repair.
  • Amputation/Loss of limb: When a body part or appendage becomes trapped or crushed between two hard surfaces, that body part may become amputated. For example, a motorcyclist may attempt to swerve to avoid a collision with a car only to have his or her leg trapped between the motorcycle and the car. Amputations are (obviously) serious injuries that can permanently impact the life of the victim. Expensive prosthetics can help the victim experience some measure of normalcy, but the victim many never be as active as he or she was before the amputation.
  • Traumatic brain injuries: Motorcyclists are at a significant risk of suffering a brain or head injury in a motorcycle accident. This is why government agencies and rider advocacy groups strongly encourage riders to always wear a properly-fitted and approved helmet any time they ride. A traumatic brain injury – even a mild one – can require medical attention and treatment. More serious brain injuries can result in the victim requiring constant care and attention (which imposes a physical and financial burden on the victim and his or her family).

What To Do After a Motorcycle Accident

When you have been involved in a motorcycle crash, your first concern should be obtaining immediate medical treatment for your injuries. Because of the seriousness of many motorcycle injuries, obtaining prompt treatment is necessary in order to minimize the harm you might otherwise suffer. Once medical assistance has been summoned, you can then worry about taking photographs of the scene of the accident and your injuries as well as making obtaining the contact information for the other driver involved and any witnesses.

Because many injured motorcyclists do not have the time or resources to investigate their own accidents, it is important that you obtain legal representation as soon as possible. Kansas Personal Injury Lawyer Michael R. Lawless can assist you in obtaining compensation after a motorcycle accident caused by another person. Call his office today at (800) 734-3771 to discuss your motorcycle injury case.

Kansas Personal Injury Lawyer Discusses Head Injuries

You are in the stands watching your child play baseball. Your child is in the outfield when the batter hits a ball high in the air in the direction of your child. Your child and another outfielder run toward where they believe the ball will drop. Your child’s focus and the focus of the other player are concentrated on the ball – they do not even see each other. Your child and the other player converge and collide, hitting their heads against one another. Your child falls to the ground and lies motionless for a few, agonizing moments. Then, your child gets up – a little unsteady, but your child appears to be okay. Should you worry?

Or consider that your child is playing on the community playground. Your child climbs to the top of the slide and beckons you to watch as he or she slides down. You watch with joy – then terror – as your child slides quickly down the slide. As he or she reaches the end of the slide, your child falls backwards, hitting his or her head on the end of the slide. Your child screams in pain as blood begins to erupt from the wound. Is this a cause for concern?

Children and Traumatic Brain Injuries

 Just like adults, children can suffer traumatic brain injuries as the result of sports injuries, falls, and other forms of rough play. Unlike adults, however, children may not be able articulate that they have suffered a traumatic brain injury and need medical attention. Unfortunately, failing to obtain prompt treatment for a traumatic brain injury can cause additional harm to your child.

If your child suffers a blow to the head and exhibits any of the following signs or symptoms, you should err on the side of caution and obtain prompt medical treatment for your child:

  • Your child is rendered unconscious and/or exhibits any signs of memory loss;
  • Confusion;
  • Unexplained, extreme, or unreasonable emotions or swings in emotion;
  • Loss of appetite;
  • Loss of interest in activities your child used to enjoy;
  • Trouble concentrating or difficulty speaking;
  • Persistent headache;
  • Lethargy or fatigue;
  • General complaints about your child’s “head hurting”

Even if your child is not exhibiting any of these signs or symptoms, if you are concerned about your child’s well-being you should take him or her to a doctor or emergency room quickly.

Compensation is Available for Some Traumatic Brain Injuries

 In some cases, your child’s traumatic brain injury is the result of an “accident” and no person can be held responsible. For example, the situation in which your child collides with another child, there is likely no legal recourse you can take against the other child’s family to recover compensation for your child’s head injury. However, if your child’s head is injured in a car accident, because of the deliberate act of another, or (in the case of the slide) because of a defective product, compensation may be available. The determining factor is whether another person engaged in negligent or reckless behavior and this behavior caused your child’s injury.

Kansas Personal Injury Lawyer Michael R. Lawless is an experienced personal injury attorney helping Kansas residents and families recover compensation following injury accidents caused by another. He will carefully analyze the facts of your case so that you can understand your legal rights and how these rights can be asserted. He will help you decide on an appropriate course of action to take if your child suffers from a head injury. Contact his office today at (800) 734-3771 and discuss your child’s injury with Michael R. Lawless today.

Kansas Personal Injury Lawyer Reports: Missouri Man Killed On-the-job After FedEx Truck Pins him against House

Throughout Kansas, Missouri, and all across the United States, the issue of workplace accidents is a serious concern. Most states, and the federal government, have guidelines in place designed to protect employees from on-the-job dangers, injuries, and death. Unfortunately, accidents still happen far too often, and can result in traumatic injuries, death, and devastated families. One recent on-the-job death in Missouri highlights how catastrophic workplace accidents can be.

According to media reports, a 52-year-old man employed by Federal Express (FedEx) died on-the-job after being pinned by the truck he was assigned to operate. Police state that the man somehow became pinned between the truck and a house causing traumatic injuries. The man was transported to a local hospital but unfortunately, did not survive his injuries.

Authorities are investigating the cause of this tragic accident, including whether the truck may have experienced a defect in the braking or other mechanical systems. There are many reasons an accident like this may occur but nothing has been positively identified in this case. FedEx provided a written statement expressing the company’s condolences to the family of the victim. Reports indicate that FedEx is cooperating with authorities to investigate this incident.

 How Often do On-the-job Deaths Occur

On-the-job accidents resulting in death are more common than most people realize. Statistics provided from the Bureau of Labor Statistics indicate that in 2011, 77 individuals died on-the-job in Kansas, and another 132 died in Missouri. More recent data released for 2013 indicated that, nationwide, more than 4,400 people suffered fatal work injuries. Most of the fatal injuries were among workers in transportation, agriculture, industrial, and manufacturing. Another large contributor to workplace fatalities was slip-and-fall injuries, which claimed nearly 700 lives in 2013. Workplace violence also accounts for a large number of injuries and deaths annually.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates that transportation related incidents account for 40-percent of on-the-job deaths. With transportation related injuries and deaths so prevalent, it is important that any individual operating a vehicle be certain that they are aware of proper safety guidelines, and report any mechanical defects that may affect safety. It is also important for employers to maintain safe working environments and perform regular maintenance on any machinery and vehicles being operated by employees.

Get Help After an On-the-job Injury

If you or a loved one has been injured in an on-the-job accident, you likely have many questions about your future, your finances, and your legal rights. Personal injury and workers’ compensation are complex areas of the law, so anyone suffering from an on-the-job accident should seek legal guidance immediately.

At the law firm of Michael R. Lawless, P.A., our Kansas Personal injury Lawyer understands how difficult it can be to face the aftermath of an on-the-job injury. Similarly, if you lost a loved one in an on-the-job accident, the stress of your situation is no doubt exacerbated by your grief and loss. Our Personal Injury Attorneys have been representing injured clients and their loved ones all across Kansas and Missouri for more than 27 years.  We are dedicated to helping you make sense of your difficult, complex situation and securing you the best outcome possible for your future security. Contact Michael R. Lawless, P.A. today to schedule a free consultation. From there, we will explore your rights and get you the help you need. Contact our office toll-free at (800) 734-3771. You may also send us a message online, and we will respond to you as soon as possible.

Kansas Personal Injury Lawyer Reports: Bus Accident Highlights Dangers for Traveling Kansas Sports Teams

Schools all across Kansas routinely host sporting events, and travel to other destinations to participate in sporting events. On these occasions, students often travel by bus, which can be stressful for anxious parents eagerly awaiting their return. In most cases, students are safely transported to and from their destination; however, in some cases, parents’ worst nightmares become reality when the bus their children are traveling in is involved in an automobile accident.

A recent out-of-state media account of just such an accident highlights the importance of roadway safety for buses. According to the article, a group of college softball players were traveling on Interstate 35 when a tractor-trailer drove through the median and struck the bus they occupied. Authorities stated that the road curved to the right, but the tractor-trailer continued straight, entered oncoming traffic lanes, and collided with the bus without braking.

National Transportation Safety Board officials commented that the tractor-trailer continued to travel for as much as 300-feet after striking the bus, crossed additional travel lanes, and drove into a group of trees. Investigators are working to determine if a mechanical problem contributed to the crash, though preliminary investigations indicated no problems with the truck’s braking system. Ongoing investigations are attempting to determine if the truck driver was impaired, indisposed, distracted, or suffered from a medical condition.

The bus involved in this tragic accident was occupied by 15 softball players and was driven by their coach. Four of the occupants were killed in the collision. All four victims were under the age of 21. Two occupants were seriously injured and remained hospitalized for days following the accident, and several others sustained minor injuries. Reports do not indicate if the truck driver sustained injuries in the accident, only that the investigation continues and he has not been criminally charged at this time. Officials stated that the truck driver claimed to have been distracted by something in the cab of the truck, but declined to provide further information.

Tragic Example of the Importance of Road Safety

This story occurred out-of-state, but it is relevant to all Kansas motorists. Buses and tractor-trailers are large, heavy vehicles and the result of an accident involving these vehicles is often devastating and catastrophic. Kansas motorists should be cautious and aware of large vehicles near them on the roadway and be diligent in following proper safety guidelines, including avoiding distraction. Distracted driving is a far too common cause of injurious or fatal automobile accidents in Kansas, and all across the United States. The majority of these accidents are needless and could have been avoided if proper care was paid to the dangers distracted driving poses to all those on the roadway.

If you or someone you know has been injured in an accident caused by a distracted or otherwise negligent driver, contact a Kansas Personal Injury Lawyer right away. With more than 27 years of experience helping injured victims throughout Kansas and Missouri, the law firm of Michael R. Lawless, P.A. can help you. Let our team of skilled attorneys carefully examine every aspect of your case and explore all possible outcomes to be sure that you get the best results possible. Do not wait to get the help you need, contact our office today to schedule a free consultation. Call the law firm of Michael R. Lawless, P.A. today by calling our office at (913) 681-5566 locally, or by calling us toll-free at (800) 734-3771. You also have the option of contacting us online, and can be confident that your message will be responded to as quickly as possible.