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The manufacturers and distributors of consumer products that are sold in the UNited States have a responsibility to ensure that the products are reasonably safe when they are used as directed. Companies that continue to market dangerous products after they have known or should have known of the risk may be subject to serious legal liability if a consumer is injured or killed while using the product. Manufacturers often use product recalls to address and remediate dangerous product issues with merchandise that has already been sold. The Ford Motor Company has recently issued a recall for over 200,000 of their popular SUVs because several vehicles have caught fire, placing consumers at risk of serious injury.

According to a national news report discussing the recall, the company has issued recalls for approximately 200,000 Ford Expedition and Lincoln Navigator vehicles that were manufactured between 2015 and 2017. The recall was issued because at least 25 vehicles in the recall group have had fires break out from the climate control systems. Although no injuries have been reported yet, the danger posed by vehicles catching on fire is serious and must be addressed. The article does not specify which specific models are subject to the recall. Anyone owning a 2015-2017 Lincoln Navigator or Ford Excursion should reach out to a local dealer to determine if their vehicle is subject to the recall, where the needed repairs will be made free of charge by the dealer.

Why Do Manufacturers Recall Products?

Manufacturers use recalls in an attempt to get dangerous products removed from the market, and therefore limit their legal liability for injuries caused by their products. Consumers who are hurt or killed by products that have already been recalled may face obstacles in collecting compensation for their loss as a result of the dangerous product. A previously issued recall is not a total bar to relief in the event of an injury. Consumers who have been hurt by a dangerous product may be entitled to significant compensation, even if the product was recalled before or after the injury occurred. Manufacturers cannot use a recall to absolve themselves entirely from the consequences of a dangerous product. Anyone with questions about making a product liability claim based on a dangerous product would seek sound legal advice before pursuing any action.

Motorcycles can be harder to see when on a busy road for a variety of reasons, and this means that it is especially important for all drivers and pedestrians to take extra precaution. Motorcycles are much smaller than cars and trucks, which can lead them to be more difficult to see from a distance. The average motorcycle ranges from 75-100 inches long, with a heigh of 40-60 inches. A car’s blind spot may cause motorcycles to be hidden from view temporarily, which can be dangerous for motorcyclists. In addition, some drivers may misjudge the speed at which a motorcycle is going, which can result in injuries.

In a recent news report, a motorcycle collided with a car in Pennsylvania, resulting in a 58-year-old motorcyclist’s death. A trauma doctor pronounced him dead shortly after his arrival at the local hospital. According to preliminary investigations, the motorcyclist was wearing a helmet at the time of the accident. A car was headed northbound and began to turn left, and the motorcyclist was heading south and unable to avoid a collision, striking the passenger side of the vehicle. The driver of the car revealed to police that she didn’t see the motorcycle approaching due to the low sun.

Driving and riding in any type of motor vehicle comes with its own set of risks, and motorcycles are no different. According to the National Higway Traffic Safety Admnistration, 42 percent of fatal motorcycle crashes that involved another motor vehicle involved a vehicle turning left while the motorcycle was going straight, passing, or overtaking a vehicle. When drivers approach an intersection and are turning, their view of oncoming traffic is partially obstructed, but driverss should take the time to wait until they are able to see around an obstructions to ensure it is safe to proceed. Any time you approach an intersection, it is important to take extra time to ensure that you use your rear and side view mirrors to ensure that nobody is in your blind spots.

Every year, Maryland motor vehicle accidents cut the lives short of thousands of people in the state. The Maryland Department of Transportation (MDOT) reported 534 fatalities on Maryland roads in 2019. While the pandemic significantly reduced the traffic on the state’s roadways, reports indicate that fatal Maryland car accidents were up 12 percent from 2019 and 17 percent from 2018. The majority of Maryland traffic fatalities occur in Prince George’s County, Baltimore County, Montgomery County, Anne Arundel County, and Baltimore City. Baltimore City likely experiences fewer fatal accidents because not many large trucks travel within the city limits.

The leading cause of fatal accidents is a result of an unsafe or sudden road or lane departure. Lane changes occur when a vehicle exits its lane and slams into another vehicle or object. These road and lane departures are connected to nearly 50% of all fatal accidents in the state.

For example, a recent local news report described a fatal two-car collision in Anne Arundel County. The accident occurred when a Chevy SUV driver tried to change lanes and was hit by Dodge Charger. The driver and passenger of the SUV died upon impact, and the other driver was airlifted to a hospital with serious injuries.

The newest transportation gadget is the electronically powered bicycle, commonly referred to as the e-bike. Over the last five years, e-bike sales have shot up from 152,000 in 2016 to 804,000 in 2021. As sales of e-bikes have skyrocketed, experts are sounding the alarm on the new technology’s safety hazards. According to the author of a 2020 study on e-bike safety, e-bikes are associated with more serious injury than manual bikes. Specifically, the study found that e-bike riders were more likely than manual bike riders to suffer internal injuries and need hospitalization after an accident.

Recently, a family in California filed a wrongful death lawsuit against Red Power Bikes after their daughter died in an accident involving the company’s e-bikes. Filed in the Los Angeles County Superior Court, the lawsuit also names Giro Sport Design, the manufacturer of the helmet the 12 year-old victim wore at the time of her accident. In January 2021, the victim was riding as a passenger on a RadRunner bike, sitting on a flat rack over the e-bike’s back wheel. Allegedly relying on the e-bike’s electric boost, which reaches speeds up to 20 miles per hour without pedaling, she and her friend rode to the top of a hill. While descending the hill, the e-bike allegedly picked up speed and began to shake. When the brakes failed to slow or stop the e-bike, her friend lost control. Both girls were thrown, and the victim suffered traumatic brain injury that left her unconscious. She never regained consciousness and died 16 days later.

What Does the Lawsuit Allege?

Motorcycle accidents happen every day for various reasons, but some of the most concerning accidents occur not because of the fault of the driver or other drivers on the road. On some occasions, motorcycle crashes occur because of motorcycle defects and flaws in the design of the motorcycle. Consumers put their trust in manufacturers and expect that the products that they purchase are safe and reliable. However, every year, there are many cases of consumers suffering injuries and even death due to defective products, including motor vehicles. When manufacturers build motorcycles with defects or defective parts, it puts motorcyclists and other drivers and pedestrians at risk. If it is determined that a motorcycle was designed with defects that caused a motorcycle accident, the manufacturer may be legally held liable for their negligence.

According to a recent news report, a 44-year-old died after a motorcycle crash in Frederick County, Maryland. A group of motorcyclists were traveling northbound when a 2011 Harley Davidson Electra Glide motorcycle began to wobble and the driver lost control. The motorcycle went down and the driver was ejected. The driver unfortunately was pronounced dead at the scene. An investigation should be conducted to determine the cause of the accident, including whether the accident was possibly caused by a defect in the motorcycle.

Motorcycle defects can range from defects in the brakes, defective tires, and/or defects in various other parts. Riders and drivers should pay attention to any motor vehicle recalls. A recall happens if there is a particular defect in a vehicle that applies to many of the vehicles that fall under the same model. If you believe you suffered injuries from a motorcycle accident due to motorcycle defects, an experienced lawyer can help you navigate how to file a claim and hold the manufacturer responsible for their negligence in product design.

Accidents often occur in a moment’s notice; however, the impact they have on a victim can last a lifetime. Even seemingly minor accidents can result in an accident victim incurring tremendous hospital bills, missing days or weeks of work, and experiencing lingering pain or other physical limitations. Through a personal injury lawsuit, Maryland accident victims can recover monetary compensation to cover these expenses.

When Can You Bring a Maryland Personal Injury Lawsuit?

Personal injury claims are based on the legal theory of negligence. Thus, to prove a claim, an accident victim must be able to establish each of the following four elements:

Riding a motorcycle is between 15 to 40 times more dangerous than driving a car, and each year dozens of motorcyclists are killed and thousands more are injured in Maryland car accidents. Motorcyclists should exercise extreme caution when out on the road, carefully obeying all traffic signs and laws. While motorcyclists might be tempted to shirk certain rules of the road, doing so could have a significant impact on a victim’s recovery in the event of an accident.

Given the elevated risk of being involved in a Maryland car accident, motorcyclists should be aware that in Maryland, contributory negligence in a car accident can dramatically impact a victim’s recovery. Although it might seem to contradict general wisdom regarding fault in an accident, even minor negligence by the victim can be used effectively by defense attorneys to counter plaintiff claims. A recent local news article discussed a fatal collision between a speeding police car and a motor scooter that occurred in June 2022 in Maryland.

According to the news article, the accident occurred when a 58-year-old Maryland man was riding a motor scooter through an intersection. The police car drove through a red light at the intersection as it was responding to a service call with lights and sirens activated, crashing into the motor scooter at high speed, ejecting the victim from the motor scooter. Officers provided aid to the victim until EMS arrived at the scene of the accident before he was taken to an area hospital with serious injuries. Ultimately, the victim’s injuries were too severe to be successfully treated and he succumbed to his injuries from the crash. The article states that the officer driving the police car suffered minor injuries, and does not mention that any charges have been filed against the officer.

On a typical day, pedestrians share the roads with drivers and bikers and use designated traffic signals to safely get around. Pedestrians face a unique risk as they are commuting, a risk that involves vehicles that weigh on average, around 4,156 pounds. In the summer, this risk may increase due to various factors. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), more than 7,000 pedestrians were killed in crashes involving motor vehicles in 2020. That equates to about one death every 75 minutes. Further, the CDC reports that one in six people who died in crashes in 2020 were pedestrians.

Pedestrian accidents tend to increase in the summer, as more people find themselves out walking to enjoy the nicer weather. In addition, drivers and pedestrians alike may find that there is increased construction occurring during the summer, which may force pedestrians to maneuver away from sidewalks and closer to oncoming traffic. As summer kicks off, it is important to think ahead about steps pedestrians can take to keep themselves as safe as possible.

How Can Pedestrians Stay Safe?

As a pedestrian, it is important to take certain steps to ensure your safety. This includes wearing a reflective vest when walking at night to increase visibility, crossing streets at designated crosswalks, walking on a sidewalk or path instead of the road, avoiding the use of electronic devices including cell phones and earbuds, and avoiding walking if under the influence of alcohol or drugs. If you are injured in a pedestrian accident, it is important to seek any medical attention that may be needed. If possible, it is also important to get the contact information and insurance information of the driver involved in the crash and to get contact information from any witnesses.

Traveling by bus is often an easy, affordable, and safe way of getting around. When you choose to travel by bus—whether on your daily commute or over the weekend to see friends or family—you have a reasonable expectation of safety. In addition, the driver of the bus has an obligation to operate the vehicle in the safest way possible, and to not drive recklessly or negligently while transporting passengers.

According to a recent local news report, 27 people were injured in a bus accident. Local authorities responded to the crash, which took place near Kingsville, Maryland. Once officials arrived on the scene, they found a megabus that had rolled off I-95. The tire on the passenger side of the bus was mostly ripped off because of the way the bus landed on its side in a nearby ravine. Following the accident, it appeared that the bus’s windshield was kicked open to help passengers evacuate. Luckily, no other vehicles were involved in the crash. Fifteen of the 27 who were injured—including the driver of the bus—were transported to local hospitals. The company operating the megabus noted that it would be conducting a full review of the circumstances surrounding the crash.

What do Maryland Bus Accident Victims Need to Prove?

Although bus accidents take place less frequently than other types of vehicle accidents, it does not make them any less dangerous. When these accidents take place, they can often be devastating and result in significant injuries. Following a major bus accident, you may be considering filing a personal injury lawsuit to recover compensation for your injuries. As a potential plaintiff, you must first consider who you will sue. If you took a bus with a large commercial bus company, you may consider suing the bus company and the bus driver, depending on the circumstances of your case. If you were on a city bus, however, the circumstances may change and there may be special rules when bringing a lawsuit against the town or agency responsible for the operation of the bus. Establishing who the lawsuit will be primarily directed toward is an important question, and one worthy of discussion with an experienced personal injury lawyer at the beginning of the lawsuit filing process.

Following a major accident involving criminal charges, some victims may believe that because the state will be criminally prosecuting the at-fault party, this is the same as filing a personal injury lawsuit and receiving compensation. In reality, the criminal prosecution led by local authorities and a civil personal injury lawsuit that a victim of an accident may bring are completely different cases—even though they may both implicate and arise out of the same set of facts from the accident. Understanding this difference is crucial so that you do not miss out on the compensation that you deserve.

According to a recent local news report, a major car accident involving multiple vehicles left at least one individual dead. Based on a preliminary investigation, a Mercedes failed to stop for a red light at an intersection and crashed into a Chevrolet. The Chevrolet then crashed into a Honda. Both the driver of the Chevrolet and the Honda were stopped at the intersection while waiting for the red light. The driver of the Chevrolet was declared dead on the scene and the driver of the Honda was transported to a local hospital by helicopter, where he later died. Based on this preliminary investigation, local authorities believe that speed and alcohol were both contributing factors to the accident. The details of the crash remain under investigation.

What is the difference between a criminal and civil lawsuit in Maryland?

Following a major car accident like the one described above, local authorities may prosecute the at-fault party if criminal wrongdoing, such as driving or operating a vehicle under the influence of drugs or alcohol, was a contributing factor or the cause of an accident. The charges that local authorities bring against the at-fault party, however, do not involve compensation to the victims of the accident. Instead, they aim to punish or deter the at-fault driver through fines imposed by the government, jail time, community service, or suspension of a license.

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