The Verdict - The Lombardi Law Firm Blog
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One has to wonder if the Harrison County Law Enforcement properly handled the 911 call warning of a pickup truck driving erratically on Interstate 29 last week. There is a nice Des Moines Register article detailing the 911 call and how quickly law enforcement responded. The article describes those riding as part of a veteran group that provides escort services at funerals for soldiers who died in Iraq or Afghanistan. This is going to get very serious for the young man involved; especially if his blood alcohol tests come back positive. The witness's description has the pickup truck suddenly veering across the center line and into the four riders. The focus of that investigation will center on what would make him suddenly veer across the center line? The truck's driver is from Nebraska. Here is a video provided by KETV-ABC Affiliate on Channel 7.
But here is the real issue that won't be discussed: How much insurance coverage will the at-fault driver have and will it ever be sufficient to cover the damages of the four who died. In my experience it isn't likely there will be sufficient insurance coverage, which is another reason to carry what's called underinsured and uninsured coverage on your car or truck or motorcycle. It covers you in the event you're in an accident and either the at-fault driver has no insurance or not enough to cover all the damages they have caused. Under and un-insurance coverage is a wise purchase. Remember it's your life that you are insuring.
This is also true for those riding bicycles on the street.
A crane collapsed at the construction site of the new federal courthouse in Cedar Rapids. There were 50 to 60 workers on the site. The crane was reported to be operated by workers from Dawes Rigging and Crane Rental from Wisconsin. The news report last night on Channel 5 indicated it fell because it was on uneven ground. That can’t be true nor should it matter. There are legs that if set properly allow a crane to be set up most any grade. Fact of the matter is it probably wasn’t set up right in the first place. Wish as you will for forgiveness but stupidity is a close relative of negligence. KWWL story. KCCI.
Remember the bulldozer that slipped off it’s jacks killing the operator?
...using a crane to life the bulldozer, however it was too late and Mr. O’Shaughnessy was pronounced dead at the scene. Workplace accidents happen every day and most are avoidable; could this accident have been avoided? Hopefully, if he's married she is covered under a workers' compensation policy of insurance. That should pay her a lifetime benef...
from *InjuryBoard Des Moines* | *Des Moines* Iowa Personal Injury Attorney - Nov 2, 2009 1:50 PM
...using a crane to life the bulldozer, however it was too late and Mr. O’Shaughnessy was pronounced dead at the scene. Workplace accidents happen every day and most are avoidable; could this accident have been avoided?Hopefully, if he's married she is covered under a workers' compensation policy of insurance. That should pay her a lifetime benefit...
from The Verdict Blawg - Nov 2, 2009 9:12 AM
KWWL reports on a two-vehicle car accident south of Garrison in Benton County. The news report is slim on facts. It’s reported to be at the location of 63rd Street and 19th Avenue. One person died, although we don’t know who.
In a single vehicle roll-over accident the driver died while three passengers were injured on U.S. Highway 34 east of Fairfield near Osage Avenue. The woman was from Indiana; Margarita Ortiz Romero (37) and her passengers were a 7-year-old Daniela Ortiz, Edgar (2) and Lucelia Caperon (42) were all taken to either the University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics or the Jefferson County Hospital. The roll-over occurred around 9:30 at night.
Council Bluffs, Iowa – A resident of CB was killed his motorcycle is reported to have struck a Honda Civic. The reports are that Eric Jacobsen (29) was struck at around 6:45 p.m. when the Civic’s driver failed to yield at a stop sign and she attempted a left turn off of Old Railroad Highway onto 205th Street. The driver said she didn’t see the motorcycle coming. Well how long did you look before pulling out? Did you come to a complete stop? How hard did you look? “I didn’t see it coming.”, isn’t a good enough reason to excuse the driver of negligence. Plain and simply you have a duty to see what is clearly there. In this instance it cost the motorcycle driver his life.
Hardin County, Iowa – A 16-year-old boy driving on a country road southeast of Union lost control while rounding a curve killing the 17-year-old passenger. (Leo Barten) Another passenger Austin Smitheman, 16, was also injured. A driver has a duty to maintain control and to drive at a speed to be able to maintain control. If you’re at the wheel it’s your duty to drive under control.
Story County, Iowa – An intersection collision at 620th Avenue and 315th Street occurred at around 6:40 p.m. between a pickup truck being driven by Jacob Thompson of Maxwell and a Mazda being driven by Jose Martinez-Alvarez of Marshalltown. A passenger in the Alvarez vehicle, Salvator Hernandez Yepez of Marshalltown was ejected and pronounce dead at the scene. There were several other passengers and all were taken to Mary Greely Medical Center in Ames. Intersection collisions are pretty common when it’s location is either uncontrolled or out in the county.
Under a court order since November of 2004, the Glenwood Resource Center of Glenwood, Iowa, a state-run home for the disabled, has experienced one death per month for the last thirteen months. Ironically, they quote Aristotle for their “quality quote,” which reads, “We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act but a habit.”
For those who are unfamiliar with the recent articles written by the Des Moines Register’s Clark Kauffman, the facts of this tragic series of incidents are these:
· Glenwood Resource Center has been operating under a court order, enforced by the United States Justice Department since November of 2004. Glenwood was given three years—until October of 2007—to comply with minimum standards of care. Glenwood was given another year to comply with the court order when deadline was extended to October of 2008. The October 2008 deadline passed with no action against Glenwood.
· Unable to complete many of the duties listen in their job descriptions because they were not licensed within the State of Iowa, the two previous medical directors had either no experience in running a medical center or had a lot of experience in filing lawsuits and providing questionable care.
· Over the past 14 months, Glenwood has employed nine unlicensed psychologists who answered to yet another unlicensed employee, the psychology administrator, for a total of 11 unlicensed staff members. However, none of the nine psychologists can be reprimanded because Iowa law only requires private, for-profit psychologists to comply with state licensing requirements.
· A lawsuit was filed by Georgette Alexander of Oskaloosa after her son, a Glenwood resident, died when he was not properly monitored following a choking incident.
· Iowa Governor, Chet Culver, who refused to make public a multitude of e-mails among his staff relating to the death of the Glenwood resident, now claims to be concerned and expects changes to be made.
This series of unfortunate events raises eyebrows as well as questions. Why are both Governor Culver and the U.S. Department of Justice allowing the extension of deadlines? Within forty-eight hours of the October 2007 deadline another Glenwood resident died due to inadequate nursing care. Additionally, why has there been no adverse action taken against Glenwood for failing to meet the October 2008 deadline? Why would Glenwood follow any deadline, when it is apparent that there are no repercussions when they are failed to be met?
Another issue, which leads to problems at Glenwood Resource Center, is the fact that Section 154B.3(3) of the Code of Iowa requires only private, for-profit psychologists to obtain a license within the state of Iowa in order to practice.
In another recent article by the Des Moines Register, Governor Culver claimed that the Glenwood center is making progress in implementing the 2004 court order. One would certainly hope so; the 315 residents at Glenwood have been waiting four years.
Betting on tort reform speaks volumes about the mentality that dead workers are just part of a growing economy. It's the same mentality of an Administration that is oblivious to Wall Street greed.
The pace of construction on the Las Vegas strip is some of this country’s most hectic. Visit LasVegasStripDaily.com and you’ll see some of the finest buildings ever built and so many high rise buildings under construction than you’ve probably imagined. Take a look and you’re left with only one thought, simply amazing. But there is a price to be paid.
What you don’t see are the 12 construction workers whose lives have been lost building at projects underway since early in 2007. It’s hard for me to imagine that officials at those construction companies aren’t concerned with the loss of life; they have to be. NIOSH has been in to investigate and written their report. But the articles being published in the Las Vegas press, point to an illusion of safety, rather than real measures of safety. Alexandra Berzon has written a series on the subject and it’s a series well worth reading, especially if you are a construction worker. As you may know I’m big on reading about how other construction workers are being killed in order to know how to prevent a similar tragedy on other construction sites.
There has been much coverage and apparently not enough safety to slow down the death rate.
Construction Worker Deaths on the Strip:
Construction Worker Deaths on the Strip:
Construction Worker Deaths on the Strip:
With President Bush as unapologetic as ever these next few months promise to be a marathon of deregulation attempts by this Administration. They will test the metal of resistance to further deregulatory efforts on the part of his Administration. Deregulation like that occurred on April 28, 2004 at 2:30 PM by the SEC that brought this country to it’s knees. It isn’t enough that this Administration’s policies have caused the American taxpayer more than several trillion dollars of nonproductive spending. It’s not enough that those trillions of dollars could have been used to fix the bridges in American that are either functionally or structurally obsolete. It’s not enough that the Social Security fund continues to be headed to financial insolvency while we spend $10 Billion a month on rebuilding Iraq.
Republicans are you listening?
What is going on in America? What is going on in the American mind? We sit idly by as this Administration continues on its path of destruction seemingly oblivious to further damage to the fabric that holds this country together. The Bush Administration should feel shame for the environment they have created that has allowed greed to become the soup de jour on Wall Street. This is not the case. With its head held high, chest puffed out like a bandy rooster the Administration moves to make further regulatory changes they see as necessary and that will surely cause years of damage to America. At what point does pride become foolish? At what point does America wake up to the fact this President is not smart enough to lead this country? At what point will this country’s Congressional leadership take the reigns and shut down any and all efforts by this Administration to do anything.
More than six years ago I thought that while impeachment would be costly for America it would in the end be less expensive than the cost to repair the damage this Administration would surely do to America before the first term ended. I only wish my prediction had been incorrect. In many ways the actions of this Administration mirror the construction on the Las Vegas strip. They continue to forge ahead at a frenetic pace leaving carnage in their wake, undeterred by the damage they have caused and the lives they have disrupted or ruined. Like Las Vegas, we will survive this President and his policies that if continued unabated would surely befall America as greed befell the Roman Empire. Greed has become a cultural norm that is driving us into bankruptcy.
Republicans have to start thinking about more than just re-election campaign contributions.
This President lacked several developmental skills on the day he took office, and he still does. If the Kennedy Administration was Camelot, the Bush Administration is the Wizard of Oz. If Camelot was John and Jackie’s Theme song then If Only I Had A Brain is the theme song for this Administration.
If Only I Had A Brain
I could wile away the hours
Conferrin' with the flowers
Consultin' with the rain
And my head I'd be scratchin'
While my thoughts were busy hatchin'
If I only had a brain
I'd unravel any riddle
For any individ'le
In trouble or in pain
With the thoughts you'd be thinkin'
You could be another Lincoln
If you only had a brain
Oh, I would tell you why
The ocean's near the shore
I could think of things I never thunk before
And then I'd sit and think some more
I would not be just a nuffin'
My head all full of stuffin'
My heart all full of pain
I would dance and be merry
Life would be a ding-a-derry
If I only had a brain
But I’m getting off the topic. We need to get this President out of office and to get this country back on track. The Republican Party is ruining itself as a political force by abandoning the principles that made it sensibly popular a few years ago. The Republican candidates are selling their souls to the highest bidder, the Religious Right and cloaking themselves with Wall Street avarice. At this point if it’s not apparent to John McCain and those who control the Party, the party is over because the Emperor has no clothes. Get back to basics, stop spending, pay off debt, stay out of the business of other countries, focus on the problems of this country even when that means regulations and higher taxes and the Republican Party can once again rise from the dead. Winning for the sake of winning is much like Conservative Chic that promotes popularity over principle. In other words, jettison the Barbie Doll from Alaska; she makes no sense.
Is the Republican Party dead? No but this Administration has gone to great lengths to drive nail after nail into the Republican coffin. The Republican’s left in the Senate and House would gain much political capital with voters by stopping this Administration in its tracks before this President leaves office in January. Do everything you can as Congressmen to stop him and his efforts that further damage this country.