Personal Injury

Personal Injury

Portland’s Third Fatal Bicycle Accident in 10 Years

Another bicycle accident recently claimed the life of a female rider in Southeast Portland. The accident happened at the intersection of SE 82nd and Flavel, considered a high crash corridor where previous road crashes resulted in 2 prior fatalities and 8 serious injuries between 2005 and 2014. Police are still investigating the cause of the accident.

Portland Bicycle Accidents

Known for its eco friendliness, Portland has a large community of cyclists who are entitled to safely share the road with other motorists. As population in Portland steadily grows, more pedestrians, bicycles, and transit vehicles increasingly take to the arterial roads and highways in and around the region. The strong economy as well boosts road travel, increasing risks of bicycle accidents in Portland.

Common Causes of Bicycle Accidents

Bicycle crashes often occur at road intersections when a motorist in another motor vehicle turns across the path of a bicyclist or when a cyclist attempts to turn right from a major road. A crash can also happen when a bicyclist rides in the path of a motor vehicle.

Negligence is also a huge factor in road crashes. Driving under the influence, speeding, and distracted driving have also been known to cause catastrophic bicycle accidents.

Recovering from a Bicycle Crash

Bicyclists are at risk of serious and fatal injuries in an accident mainly due to the bicycle’s relatively lighter weight and smaller size than other road vehicles. A road collision while on a bicycle can cause critical injuries such as brain injury, spinal cord injury, severe internal injuries, excessive bleeding, and multiple fractures.

If you or a loved one is injured in a bicycle accident, a full medical recovery can require multiple surgical procedures and therapy that can be expensive. So it’s important to speak to an experienced bicycle accident attorney who can determine the cause or causes of your crash and if necessary, walk you through the process of claiming compensation for your injuries.

In Oregon, the personal injury lawyers at Dwyer Williams Dretke Attorney PC have more than 100 years of collective experience in bicycle accidents. We work very hard to make our injured clients and their families whole again by recovering the value of compensation that they legally deserve.

We invite you to call us for a free consultation at (541) 617-0555 to learn more about how we can help you. Our firm also handles other types of personal injury cases such as truck accidents, pedestrian accidents, slip, trip and fall accidents, and dog bites and dog attacks.

Employee Fired after Reporting Suspected Nursing Home Neglect

A former nursing assistant who worked in a Portland nursing home has filed a lawsuit against the facility after she was allegedly fired because she reported patient neglect.

The former employee states that while she was on leave with the flu, other employees at the facility failed to provide proper care for her patient. When she returned to work, she found that the patient had developed a large, infected wound on his leg.

Questioning the Evidence

The employee took photos of the wound and brought them to a medical educator in an attempt to report medical neglect. The lawsuit states that the employee was fired for sharing the photos because the images violated the patient’s medical privacy.

The employee believed that she was fired for bringing attention to this alleged neglect. She is now suing the facility for $575,000.

Elder Abuse an Epidemic in the United States

If you believe that a loved one is having to deal with elder abuse, you are not alone. According to a report from the US Department of Health and Human Services in 2014:

  • As many as one in twenty elderly individuals facing abuse and neglect in United States
  • Only one in fourteen cases are reported to the authorities
  • Nearly 22% of patients in skilled-nursing facilities experience unnecessary and preventable injuries, such as infections, medication error and falls

What to Do If You Suspect Nursing Home Neglect

If an older individual is in immediate danger, is is imperative that you call 911 or contact the local police department for immediate assistance.

If the danger is not immediate but you suspect elder abuse is occurring, you can report the suspected abuse by contacting the Adult Protective Services (APS) in the state where the older individual resides. You can find the correct APS reporting number in to ways:

  • Visiting the State Resources Section of the National Center on Elder Abuse website; and/or
  • Calling the Eldercare Locator at 1 (800) 677-1116

When You Should Contact Dwyer Williams Dretke Attorneys, P.C.

The attorneys at Dwyer Williams Dretke Attorneys, P.C. are proud to serve all of Oregon with offices in Bend, Grands Pass, Eugene, Roseburg and Portland. If you believe that an older loved one has sustained permanent emotional or physical injury or even death because of the abuse of a nursing home facility, we are here to help.

To schedule for your free initial consultation, please call (541) 617-0555.

Couple Recovers Damages Following Restaurant Slip-and-Fall Accident

A Pennsylvania jury recently awarded approximately $1.2 million in damages to a woman who injured her left knee as a result of a slip and fall accident in a famous bread restaurant. The plaintiff claimed that she slipped on a greasy substance while walking towards the restaurant’s restroom and landed on her knees. The fall injured her left knee which left her immobilized for some time.

Orthopedic Surgeon’s Expert Testimony

Crucial to the case was the expert testimony of the plaintiff’s orthopedic surgeon who testified that the slip and fall accident caused an acute subluxation of the plaintiff’s left knee which required extensive surgery to reconstruct and realign the injured joint. He also testified that the plaintiff needed continued diagnostic studies, visits, physical therapy, and possible knee replacement for a full recovery.

Plaintiff’s Claims

In addition to her past and future medical costs, plaintiff also alleged that she remained in crutches for weeks, underwent physical therapy and rehabilitation which prevented her from regularly reporting for work as a regional director of an education company. She also claimed that her injury which would prevent her from traveling extensively would affect her chances of promotion. She sought compensation for past and future lost earnings from the defendant.

Plaintiff also maintained that she now uses permanent braces to stabilize her injured knee, leading her to live a sedentary lifestyle that prevents her from enjoying the usual activities she had with her family. She asked that she be awarded damages for past and future pain and suffering. Her husband also claimed compensation for loss of consortium.

After deliberations, the jury returned with a verdict awarding approximately $1,225,500 to the plaintiff and her husband.

Portland Slip-and-Fall Accident

In Portland, Oregon, a person who is injured in a slip and fall accident due to the negligence or fault of the owner or manager of the premises may be entitled to compensation for their injuries. An experienced personal injury attorney can help you sort the legal issues of your situation, determine whether a party or parties are legally responsible, and establish the important elements of your case with the help of medical or other accident experts.

The law firm of Dwyer Williams Dretke has over 90 years of collective experience, helping injured persons in Porland recover adequate and full compensation in slip and fall accidents.

We welcome your call today to schedule a free, no obligation consultation with one of our approachable attorneys (541) 617-0555.

Jury Awards Damages against Toy Maker and Distributor for Child’s Brain Injury

A toy manufacturer and its distributor were recently ordered to pay damages in connection with a young child’s brain injury. The jury award is reportedly the first in several similar lawsuits involving a toxic toy that was manufactured in China.

Toxic Toy Beads

The toy is a craft kit with tiny candy-colored beads that children can use to create a multitude of designs. The toy beads were voluntarily recalled after the manufacturer received reports that some children who swallowed the toy beads suffered nausea, vomiting, and coma. The beads were later found to be tainted with a chemical substance that once metabolized, converts to a harmful chemical known as GHB, also known as a date rape drug.

The plaintiffs are parents of a young boy who was only 16 months old when he ingested the tainted toy beads and lapsed into a coma. He suffered a brain injury as a result. After trial, the jury ruled that the toy maker and its distributor must pay damages amounting to $435,000 to the child’s family. The plaintiffs, however, said that they are going to appeal the value of the award, citing astronomical costs of past and future medical bills for the child’s brain injury.

Oregon Brain Injury

Brain injury is a life-changing event that can take an emotional and financial toll on the injured person and their loved ones. When the injury is a result of someone else’s fault or negligence, Oregon tort law allows the injured party to recover compensation and damages from the negligent party.

If a member of your family has recently suffered a brain injury in an accident, an experienced personal injury attorney can evaluate whether you are entitled to compensation under the situation. Brain injury cases are often very complicated, often requiring expert medical opinion to help establish the cause of the brain injury and identify the party who caused the injury.

In Portland, Oregon, the experienced and tough personal injury law firm of Dwyer Williams Dretke has been helping injured clients recover from brain injury by obtaining the true value of compensation that they legally deserve.

Our lawyers have over 90 years of collective experience in a wide range of personal injury cases such as auto accidents, motorcycle injury, bicycle accidents, semi-truck accidents, dog attacks, DUI accidents, elder abuse, and wrongful death cases.

We offer a free, no obligation evaluation of your case so call us today at (541) 617-0555.

Patient Files $22 Million Suit Against Surgeon Who Paralyzed Him

Near the end of the summer, a medical malpractice suit was filed against Oregon Health & Science University and its surgeon for paralyzing a patient during an operation to untether a pinched nerve.

The plaintiff alleges that the surgeon twice dropped a surgical instrument onto his spinal cord during the surgery. As a result, the plaintiff suffered permanent damages including: quadriplegia, urinary and fecal incontinence, pain, interference with daily activities and loss of enjoyment to life. He is requesting damages totaling $22 million.

Specifically, he is asking for:

  • $2,000,000 for past medical bills
  • $10,000,000 for future medical bills and cost of care, and
  • $10,000,000 for loss of enjoyment of life and pain and suffering

Oregon Torts Claim Act

Under the Oregon Torts Claim Act, there is a limit to recovery in successful tort claims brought against the state or its employees. Since the Oregon Health & Science University operates a public hospital, any damages the plaintiff receives will be capped. The rationale behind the cap is that it strikes a balance between awarding appropriate damages and protecting the public from absorbing the cost of exorbitant payouts. While the petitioner is seeking $22 million, he can only receive a maximum of $4.1 million by statute.

2009 Oregon Health & Science University Lawsuit

Unfortunately, this is not the first time that Oregon Health & Science University has been sued for medical malpractice. Another suit was filed against OHSU in 2009 alleging that a surgeon negligently severed a blood vessel in the petitioner’s liver forcing him to have a liver transplant. Under the Torts Claim Act, the petitioner only received $3 million; an amount so small it didn’t cover his outstanding medical bills, let alone any future bills he would incur. In response to this suit, OHSU apologized but claimed that the Torts Claim Act cap allows hospitals and other high-risk public services to function.

Have You Suffered an Injury in Oregon?

If you or a loved one has suffered a spinal or brain injury, you should immediately contact an attorney. At Dwyer Williams Dretke Attorneys, PC we have years of experience handling these complex cases and will ensure that you receive the services that you deserve. Call (541) 617-0555 for an initial consultation, free of charge. We understand that these injuries incur great financial burden on the victim and their family, that’s why we work on a contingency fee basis. If you don’t recover any money, we don’t get paid.