No matter where you live, you probably have a ceiling fan in at least one room of your home. Given how common ceiling fans are in all kinds of residences, from houses to apartments to studios, you probably do not give them a second glance when entering a room. In the event that a ceiling fan is defective, however, and hurts someone or damages property while spinning because of the manufacturer or a design flaw, you may be able to recover damages in a Maine product liability lawsuit.

According to a recent news article, more than 190,000 ceiling fans have been recalled after the blades detached. Flying blades, the Consumer Product Safety Commission claimed, could cause injury and damage property for unsuspecting consumers. Of the 80,000 sold to consumers in the U.S. and Canada, there have been 47 reports of blades detaching from the fans, with two of them involving blades hitting people and four involving property damage. The Consumer Safety Commission has recommended that all consumers immediately stop using the fans, especially if they notice unusual blade movement or uneven gaps that appear between the body of the fan and the blades. Further, consumers can contact the distributor of the fans for a replacement free of charge.

If you are a Maine consumer who was injured by a ceiling fan, you may have a product liability claim. When you purchase any product, there are promises, otherwise known as implied warranties, made between the manufacturer of the product and the seller. Consumers receiving a product that is fit for the purpose for which it was sold and not defective, for example, is one of those warranties. Thus, when someone is injured because the product fails to deliver on those warranties, then both the seller and the manufacturer could be responsible for any injuries that occur to the consumer.

Maine is no stranger to severe weather events—and even sometimes when the weather doesn’t appear to be too bad, snow, ice, and rain during the winter months can significantly impact road conditions. As a result, drivers must operate with increased care when commuting during the colder months. Even if there isn’t a storm at the moment, leftover snow, ice, or slush on the road could have devastating consequences for travelers.

According to a recent news report, heavy equipment was needed as crews worked to remove a truck after an accident. Local authorities reported that the driver of a Ford F-150 lost control of his truck after hitting slush and crossed the center line of the road, which put him in the path of a large box truck hauling newsprint. The box truck driver swerved to avoid crashing into the F-150 head-on, which caused him to fly through a guard rail and roll on its side. The truck stopped at the bottom of an embankment in the median. Luckily, the driver was treated and released from the scene for minor injuries, but it took crews several hours to remove the vehicle after shutting it down for several hours.

To avoid accidents in Maine, drivers must be ready for all kinds of weather. Because of how quickly the weather can shift, especially during winter, our roads can become dangerous and tricky to navigate in just moments. To keep yourself safe, there are a number of steps you can take as a driver to proactively prepare for potential accidents and reduce the likelihood of one taking place.

Although there are various dangers on our roads, trucks are responsible for a significant number of them. Being more susceptible to accidents because of their larger size and weight compared to average passenger vehicles, trucks can often put even the most experienced drivers on high alert. Of the various ways you could be involved in a significant accident with a truck, Maine truck underride collisions may be one of the most deadly and horrific.

A truck underride collision occurs when a regular passenger vehicle like a sedan or even an SUV crashes into a semi-truck or other large multi-wheeler vehicle and then slides under the truck. When the passenger vehicle goes under the larger truck, it often scrapes the roof off of the passenger vehicle and can kill the occupants upon impact. Sometimes, when the driver and passengers of the passenger vehicle are more fortunate, the crash will occur next to one of the larger truck’s axles, which prevents the passenger vehicle from physically going completely under the truck.

According to national statistics, truck underride collisions account for nearly a quarter of deaths from accidents involving trucks. Of all the types of truck underride collisions, side underride and rear underride crashes occur most frequently.

Since you were a child, you’ve probably been told to look left, look right, and then to look left again before crossing the street. Especially on busy, congested roadways, pedestrians must exercise extra caution and proactively avoid cars while crossing the street. Sometimes, however, even the most diligent pedestrians end up in devastating accidents. Whether the driver doesn’t see the pedestrian in a blind spot or isn’t paying attention to the road, a Maine pedestrian accident can cause devastating consequences.

For example, according to a recent news report, a 27-year-old Maine woman was killed by a car while crossing a crosswalk. According to local authorities, the driver was also injured and transported to a local hospital after the incident. The crash is still under investigation.

Pedestrian deaths are on the rise in Maine. According to the Maine Bureau of Highway Safety, pedestrian deaths tripled between 2018 and 2019. In response, public safety officials claim that pedestrians and drivers have important roles in making the streets safer. For example, pedestrians should wear bright and reflective clothing for increased visibility for drivers, especially at night. Crossing the street at designated crosswalk areas, authorities suggest, can also decrease the likelihood of accidents.

As cooler temperatures descend upon the northeast, so too does inclement weather. Although Maine is no stranger to snowstorms, ice, and other cold-weather events, driving in these conditions can be challenging and potentially deadly for even the most experienced drivers. It is essential that if you need to travel during the winter months, especially when weather events are taking place, you exercise the utmost caution to avoid a Maine weather related car accident.

In a recent news report, two people died in a crash while traveling during a snowstorm. The vehicle was traveling north when it crashed and went over an interstate guardrail near an overpass. The car landed on its roof before going over another guardrail and catching on fire. The driver and his passenger, both locals of Sanford, were pronounced dead on the scene when local authorities responded to the accident. Following an investigation into the accident, law enforcement cited speed, weather conditions from the snowstorm, and traffic congestion from another crash as major factors in causing the accident.

Following an accident involving poor weather conditions, you may be wondering if you have a legal claim. Although each case depends on the circumstances surrounding the crash, there are a few scenarios where you may be able to still recover compensation. For example, if the weather played a contributing factor in causing the accident, the other party may claim that the crash was “an act of God.” However, this defense only works if the weather was very unexpected or so significantly unusual that the other party could not have anticipated the weather.

Seat belts are a crucial part of ensuring your safety while driving in Maine, whether you’re the driver or just a passenger. Unfortunately, despite how common and easy it is to buckle up, thousands of people every year are still involved in car accidents that result in tragic fatalities or significant injuries that were avoidable had they worn a seat belt. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, of the 37,133 people who died in car accidents in 2017, 47% of them were not wearing seat belts. Based on this data, 14,955 lives were saved because of seat belt use, and 2,549 could have been saved had they buckled up.

Based on a recent news report, a local head-on collision left one woman dead and two men in the hospital. According to local authorities, their initial investigation showed that the woman was driving her vehicle when she collided in her travel lane with a man headed in the opposite direction. The woman died on impact, and her son, who was in the vehicle with his mother during the accident, was transported to a local hospital where he was treated for wrist and rib injuries. The man in the other vehicle was airlifted to a local hospital, where the local police report that he is in critical condition. Following the accident, both vehicles were demolished. Authorities say that the man involved in the accident was not wearing a seat belt, but the deceased woman and her son were. The crash remains under investigation and is being forensically mapped out by local law enforcement as they attempt to determine the cause of the collision.

Like other states, Maine has specific laws about safety restraints and seat belts. For adults, when the person driving the vehicle is 18 years of age or older and operating a car required by the U.S. Department of Transportation to have seat belts within the vehicle, the driver and passengers must be wearing seat belts. If this law is violated, drivers can be fined up to $50 for the first offense, $125 for the second offense, and $250 for any future offenses that may add up. Based on local laws, if seat belt laws are violated, a vehicle and its contents can be searched along with its driver and passengers. However, an accident victim’s failure to wear a seat belt will not impact their ability to recover compensation from the at-fault party.

Under Maine personal injury law, accident victims or their loved ones may seek compensation for their damages against the at-fault party. However, issues arise when the at-fault party dies at any point after the accident. When a defendant in a Maine personal injury action dies, victims must take specific steps to preserve their rights and remedies.

Personal injury claims generally survive the death of a defendant in a Maine injury lawsuit. State law permits a plaintiff to continue their claim against the defendant’s estate. When this occurs, the defendant or plaintiff must file a motion with the court to substitute the at-fault party’s estate as the defending party. This applies whether the defendant dies before or after the filing of the case. In either situation, the plaintiff is a victim of wrongdoing, and they maintain the right to compensation for their damages.

For example, a recent Maine news report describes a head-on crash that caused a four-vehicle collision, resulting in two fatalities. According to the Police Chief, he discovered a vehicle crashed head-on with a tour bus, and another car collided head-on with a dump truck. Evidence suggests that one of the cars crossed into the center lane and hit an SUV, the SUV spun out of control and was hit by the dump truck. The car then slammed into a tour bus, resulting in the death of two people inside the car. If an investigation reveals that the car driver was responsible for the accident, the victims or their family members may file a claim against the deceased driver’s estate.

Given Maine’s reputation as a beautiful place to live and vacation, the state experiences a significant amount of car and truck travel every year. However, all this traffic creates busy highways filled with cars and large commercial vehicles, increasing the chances of a serious Maine truck accident. Although some accidents are unavoidable, many trucking accidents are preventable. A significant number of these accidents result from a driver’s negligence or a defective car or truck component.

Trucks with defective parts, as well as those with inherently dangerous features, kill and injure thousands of people every year. A seemingly small defect can change the mechanical workings of these intricate vehicles. Even one defective part in a commercial truck can result in a total system failure, causing the truck to become a serious hazard. This is why federal and state lawmakers require commercial truck drivers to obtain special education, training, and licensing to operate them. Even simple tasks such as shifting and braking require several systems to work together. If even one of these systems contains a defect, the risk of a system failure or accident significantly increases.

The most common defects involve brakes, hydraulics, engines, steering systems, hitches, tires, and restraints. For example, recently, a state court issued an opinion in an accident lawsuit stemming from a truck’s un-commanded activation of a dump gate.

Recently, the City of Portland appealed a denial of its motion for summary judgment on immunity grounds in a Maine slip-and-fall lawsuit. In this case, the plaintiff suffered various injuries after, slipping and falling on ice outside of the Portland Police Department Headquarters’ lobby. Evidently, the plaintiff fell on a partially open brick-paved plaza about seven feet from the exit. The particular location is part of the defendant’s building and is used as a parking area and holding pen. The victim and his wife filed a negligence lawsuit against the City. In response, the City filed various affirmative defenses, including being immune under the Maine Tort Claims Act (MTCA).

Under the MTCA, “all governmental entities shall be immune from suit on any tort claims seeking recovery.” However, the immunity is subject to several exceptions, including the “public building” exception. Under the statute, a “public building” is one that is accessible to the public and serves a public function. When a dispute arises regarding whether an area “belongs” to a building, courts review the area to determine whether it is a “fixture.” The law defines a fixture as something that is “physically annexed” to the property, adapted to the realty, and intended to be irremovable from the property. Similarly, an appurtenance is an object that belongs or is attached to a public building, not including personal property outside the building.

In this case, the defendants argued that the area the plaintiff’s fall did not fit into the statute’s public building exception. The plaintiff did not argue that the area was, in fact, a “public building,” rather, they argued that the plaza was a part of the defendant’s building. In the alternative, the plaintiff contended that the plaza was an appurtenance or a fixture to the building.

Although the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) classifies buses as one of the safest forms of transportation for passengers in the United States, the safety does not extend to people not on the bus. The FMCSA reported that the country experiences over 50,000 bus accidents every year, resulting in thousands of injuries and fatalities. The sheer magnitude of buses makes them a serious and potentially deadly threat to Maine motorists, bicyclists, pedestrians, and bystanders. In some instances, bus passengers may suffer injuries and death as well. Despite the training that bus drivers must complete, many Maine bus drivers operate their vehicles without the proper concern for others’ safety. In these cases, Maine bus injury victims may seek compensation for their damages.

Many reasons can cause a Maine bus driver to collide with another motorist or pedestrian. These drivers encounter the same risks and hazards as other motorists; however, the accidents come with much more significant consequences. Although the rate of injury is lower, Maine bus passengers face risk when traveling in these vehicles. The primary risk stems from the state’s lack of seat belts on many public and school buses. Although some manufacturers add seat belts on these vehicles, most individuals do not have access to buses with seat belts, and there are vague rules requiring wearing them. Further, most Maine transit buses are overcrowded, especially during peak travel times. Overcrowding leads to many passengers standing closely together without access to safety handles. If an accident occurs in this situation, the passengers may ram into one another, resulting in more serious injuries.

There are even more dangers to those not traveling on the bus. Most Maine transit buses weigh between 20,000 and 40,000 pounds. As a result, a moving bus generates over four times as much energy than a typical vehicle. Further, the design of these buses often results in many blind spots. This often impairs a driver’s ability to gauge their surroundings safely, which can result in a collision. These accidents can have long-lasting and potentially fatal consequences.

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