Articles Posted in Personal Injury

Safety is paramount when it comes to the places we live and frequent daily. Unfortunately, structural support failures can lead to catastrophic accidents that disrupt lives and cause immense harm.

A recent incident in Augusta serves as a stark reminder of the potential dangers posed by structural support failures. According to a report by the Portland Press Herald, a porch on Washington Street collapsed, leading to the displacement of ten individuals. The incident emphasizes the critical need to ensure the stability and safety of structures to prevent such accidents from occurring.

Common Causes of Structural Support Failures

According to a recent article a chain reaction crash occurred in Westbrook, Maine when a driver failed to yield at an intersection, triggering a domino effect that involved multiple vehicles. The consequences were severe, leaving several people injured and vehicles mangled. Such incidents not only cause physical harm but also leave emotional and financial scars that can last a lifetime.

Understanding Chain Reaction Crashes

Chain reaction crashes, often referred to as multi-vehicle collisions or pile-ups occur when a series of vehicles collide in a sequence of impacts. These crashes can happen on highways, at intersections, or in heavy traffic, and they typically involve three or more vehicles. The initial collision sets off a chain reaction as vehicles behind the point of impact are unable to stop in time, leading to a cascade of crashes.

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Tragedy struck the peaceful roads of Maine once again as two young lives were cut short in a devastating car crash. According to a recent article, two young men were driving together on Tenney Hill Road around 7 a.m. on June 5 when they collided with another vehicle and then hit a cluster of trees. One was pronounced dead at the scene and another was airlifted to Maine Medical Center in Portland. He died as a result of his injuries a week later. 

The incident serves as a grim reminder of the dangers of excessive speed and the havoc it can wreak on our roadways. At Peter Thompson & Associates, we are deeply saddened by this loss and remain committed to raising awareness about the perils of reckless driving. 

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Accidents have the unsettling ability to disrupt lives in an instant, leaving a trail of devastation in their wake. A recent article from CentralMaine.come serves as a sobering reminder of just how swiftly lives can be transformed by a catastrophic collision. In Norridgewock, a driver fell asleep at the wheel and crossed over the center line, striking two other cars, injuring four people. All three vehicles were completely destroyed in the crash. Thankfully, there were no fatalities. 

The Alarming Reality:

Drowsy driving is more than just a momentary lapse in attention; it is a leading cause of accidents on our roadways. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), drowsy driving is responsible for an estimated 72,000 crashes and 800 fatalities annually in the United States. Maine, despite its serene landscapes and tranquil settings, is not immune to the perils of drowsy driving.

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Dog attacks can be terrifying and life-altering experiences, affecting victims physically, emotionally, and financially. According to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), an estimated 4.5 million Americans experience dog bites annually. Shockingly, a staggering 20% of these incidents demand immediate medical intervention due to the severity of the injuries.

According to a recent article, a six-year-old child was viciously attacked by a dog in Chesterville, Maine. The child was playing outdoors when an unrestrained dog lunged at them, causing severe injuries, particularly to the face and upper body. Fortunately, quick thinking by a nearby adult prevented the situation from escalating further. The child was promptly rushed to a nearby hospital, where they underwent emergency surgery. 

Liability in Dog Attacks:

In Maine, dog owners can be held liable for injuries caused by their pets under certain circumstances. Maine operates under a “strict liability” statute when it comes to dog attacks. This means that dog owners are held responsible for injuries inflicted by their dogs, even if the dog has never displayed aggressive behavior before, and the owner had no prior knowledge of their dog’s potential to bite.

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ATV (All-Terrain Vehicle) accidents can lead to severe injuries and tragic consequences. As a personal injury law firm based in Maine, we understand the devastating impact these accidents can have on individuals and their families.

According to a recent news article, a 16-year-old individual from Oakland, Maine tragically lost their life in an ATV accident on Manchester Road. The accident occurred when the ATV veered off the road and struck a tree. Emergency responders were called to the scene, but unfortunately, the teenager succumbed to their injuries.

The Prevalence of ATV Accidents in Maine:

ATVs are popular recreational vehicles in Maine, providing an exciting way to explore the state’s beautiful landscapes. However, with increased usage comes an inherent risk of accidents. According to the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife, ATV accidents have been a recurring issue in recent years, resulting in injuries and fatalities.

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Hazardous waste poses significant risks to human health, the environment, and communities. As a personal injury law firm dedicated to protecting the rights of individuals in Maine, we understand the severe consequences that can result from hazardous waste incidents. 

According to a recent article, a freight train carrying hazardous materials derailed in Sandwich Academy Grant Township in Somerset County, raising concerns about railway safety and the transportation of dangerous substances. The derailment serves as a reminder of the potential dangers associated with the mishandling or release of hazardous waste and highlights the importance of implementing robust safety measures and adhering to regulations to prevent accidents and protect communities from the harmful effects of such incidents.

The Hazards of Hazardous Waste:

Hazardous waste poses significant risks to both human health and the environment. It can contain toxic substances, flammable materials, corrosive chemicals, or other dangerous components that can cause serious harm if released or mishandled. The recent freight train derailment highlights the potential magnitude of these hazards and underscores the need for stringent safety measures to protect communities from the harmful effects of such incidents.

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Pedestrian accidents can have devastating consequences, causing severe injuries and even fatalities. Maine’s picturesque landscapes and bustling communities make it important for both pedestrians and drivers to be aware of their surroundings and prioritize safety. 

According to a recent article, a 13-year-old student was struck by a tractor-trailer while crossing the road after getting off a school bus in Gray. This unfortunate accident occurred during a critical moment when the bus’s stop-arm was extended to indicate that children were entering or exiting the vehicle. The student sustained severe injuries, requiring immediate medical attention.

Common Causes of Pedestrian Accidents

Understanding the common causes of pedestrian accidents is crucial in raising awareness and implementing effective safety measures. Some key factors that contribute to such accidents include:

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Negligence law in Maine is designed to compensate the victims of another’s negligence for damages related to physical harm that is caused by such negligence. In addition to physical harm, victims can generally recover damages for psychological and economic damages that are causally related to this physical harm. Negligent acts that cause psychological or emotional harm without physical injury may also form actionable claims, however, Maine law is more limited in this respect. The Supreme Judicial Court of Maine recently ruled that a woman’s negligence claim alleging PTSD as a result of the defendant’s actions had been rightfully rejected by a lower court.

The plaintiff in the recently decided case worked as a heavy equipment operator for a paper company. The plaintiff’s company hired a heavy equipment repair company (the defendant) to fix a crane while the plaintiff was working. While working on the crane, employees of the defendant instructed the plaintiff to assist them in repairing the crane by operating the controls while a repairperson rode on the body of the crane. The plaintiff reluctantly agreed to assist the defendant’s employees. While the plaintiff was assisting in the repairs, one of the men repairing the crane unexpectedly stood up and was crushed between an overhead truss bean and the crane, causing him to fall 30 feet to the floor. The man dies as a result of his injuries.

The plaintiff suffered emotional distress and PTSD as a result of her experience surrounding the fatal accident. She filed a negligence lawsuit against the defendant, alleging that they negligently ordered her to participate in the repair, resulting in the death, and this caused the plaintiff’s psychological injuries. The plaintiff also made a claim that the defendant negligently inflicted emotional distress. In response to the plaintiff’s general negligence claim, the defendant answered that Maine law requires a plaintiff to allege physical harm as a result of negligence. In response to the negligent infliction of emotional distress claim, the defendant argued that the plaintiff did not have a sufficient relationship with the deceased for her claim to succeed. The trial court accepted the defendant’s arguments and resolved the case in favor of the defendant.

If you’re in an accident in Maine, whether a car accident or a slip-and-fall, you may be wondering if you’ll be saddled with the expenses required to treat your injuries, restore your property, and compensate your time away from work. Maybe you contributed in some small way to your accident, such as speeding slightly or not carefully inspecting the walkway, and you’re worried you may not be able to recover any costs at all.

To recover damages in a personal injury case, you must establish the negligence of the person you are trying to recover from. This means this person owed you a duty of care and breached that duty in a way that caused your injury, which basically establishes fault. Different states use different negligence systems that can create a confusing legal environment for personal injury litigants. Some states say that victims cannot recover any damages at all if they were at fault even in a small way in an accident. Others allow for recovery, but damages will be reduced by the percentage a jury finds you to be at fault. Others allow recovery if you are found either equally at fault or less than equally at fault. In Maine, if you are 49% or less at fault, you are allowed to recover damages in a personal injury case. This is called a modified comparative negligence system.

Modified Comparative Negligence in Maine

As stated above, Maine’s negligence rule means that you will recover as long as a jury determines you were less than 49% at fault in the accident—meaning you cannot recover if you are “equally at fault.” If you are less than 49% at fault but more than 0% at fault, your recoveries will be reduced to the extent the jury finds is “just and equitable” considering your actions and share of responsibility.

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