Articles Posted in Florida

An Orange County woman is suing McDonald’s, alleging failure to properly secure the lid of a hot coffee cup that led to injuries.

The woman filed a complaint Nov. 6 in Orange County Circuit Court against McDonald’s Restaurants of Florida Inc., alleging failure to exercise reasonable care for the safety of customers.

According to the complaint, on Nov. 1. 2016, the woman was at the drive-through at McDonald’s when an employee handed her a cup of hot coffee. As she took a sip of the coffee, she said, the lid was not properly secured, and the hot coffee spilled onto her.

As a result, the woman says she sustained physical injuries, mental anguish, loss of earnings and incurred medical expenses.

The woman alleges the McDonald’s employee failed to adequately secure the lid on the coffee cup, thus creating a hazardous condition to its customers when handing them hot coffee.

If certain details of this case sound familiar, you are probably thinking of the most famous case of a coffee-related burn lawsuit where a New Mexico woman successfully sued McDonald’s for over $2.8 million after suffering serious burns from a 190 degree cup of coffee. That judgement was later reduced to just over $600,000 before a confidential settlement was reached between the two parties.

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A Tallahassee man is suing a Clearwater miniature golf facility, alleging negligence.

The man filed a complaint Nov. 7 in Pinellas Circuit Court against the mini golf business owners, alleging they failed to provide a safe environment for its business invitees.

According to the complaint, on Aug. 2, the man was at the miniature golf course when he unknowingly stepped down a steep angle on the floor, causing him to fall.

The lawsuit states the man suffered serious injuries to his right leg and back, resulting in pain and suffering, disability, disfigurement, loss of earnings and aggravation of a previous existing condition.

The man alleges the business owners failed to provide a side walkway, lighting, and warning of a steep drop-off, failed to inspect the hidden dangers on the property, and failed to warn the man of the dangerous drop-off.

Mini golf is usually a fun experience enjoyed by everyone. No one ever thinks they can be injured playing mini golf, but the truth is, you can certainly sustain injuries while mini golfing. Even the safest mini golf attractions can have lapses of negligence. As an invitee of the mini golf course, you as the guest have a right to be reasonably protected against any safety risk while in the park under Florida premises liability law. Failure on the mini golf location’s part to protect you may be considered negligence.

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Halloween is tomorrow and our Florida Injury Lawyers at Whittel & Melton want everyone to remember to make safety a part of your celebration at home, at a party, or while trick or treating. Please keep the following safety tips in mind for happy Halloween memories:

Trick or Treating Safety

  • Children under the age of 12 should be accompanied by a parent or responsible adult while trick or treating. With older children, curfews should be established. Encourage teens to stay with a group and make sure you know what route they plan to use.
  • You can reduce the risk of a pedestrian accident by using flashlights and glow sticks when trick or treating. These will allow motorists to see your trick or treater on the street. We also encourage you to dress your children in costumes with reflective material, lighter colors, and free from excessive material, which could prompt a slip and fall accident. Proper footwear is essential in preventing falls, too. Avoid wearing masks that are too large, which can obstruct your child’s vision.
  • Always have your cellphone on you in case of an emergency!
  • Stay in well-lit areas on familiar streets, and pass on going to dark homes. Make sure your kids know to never enter homes or cars to retrieve candy.
  • Always inspect candy for choking hazards and potential tampering before eating.

Safe Driving On Halloween

  • As a driver, be especially cautious in residential neighborhoods where trick or treaters may travel. Drive slowly and be vigilant in watching out for children in costume and other pedestrians.
  • If you are reversing from a home or street, please look for anyone behind you before doing so.
  • Distracted driving and speeding should be avoided during heavy trick or treating hours, and really any time when you are behind the wheel.
  • Turn on headlights, even during daylight hours just to be extra cautious.

If you or someone you love has been injured in a pedestrian accident, a slip and fall accident or any other type of accident due to another’s negligence, we can help. Call us for a free consultation at 866-608-5529 or contact us online. We can begin helping you with your potential case right away, so do not delay.

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A motorcyclist was killed Sunday in a hit-and-run crash in Daytona Beach, according to the Florida Highway Patrol.

The crash happened at the intersection of 13th Street and San Jose Boulevard at about 5:10 p.m.

Troopers said the crash involved a motorcycle and a pickup truck.  

The motorcyclist died at Halifax Medical Center.

The driver of the pickup fled on foot, according to reports. Witnesses saw the driver of the pickup get into a white passenger car that fled the scene, according to police.

Other motorcyclists have died in crashes in Central Florida since Friday.

Two motorcyclists were killed in a crash near International Speedway Boulevard in Volusia County on Friday.

A fatal motorcycle crash in Volusia County was reported on Saturday.

Thousands of motorcyclists were in Daytona Beach Oct. 21-22 for Biketoberfest.

Drivers who cause motorcycle collisions may experience a moment of panic immediately after when they decide to stay or flee the scene. Those who choose to leave the scene of the crash are are in fact breaking the law and committing a serious crime. In such cases, it is the victim and their family who are burdened with all the expenses of the aftermath of the crash, including costs of hospitalization, rehabilitation and even funeral expenses, lost wages and more. Our Florida Motorcycle Accident Injury Lawyers at Whittel & Melton can help those injured and families of those killed in hit-and-run accidents better understand their legal rights.

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A Broward County woman is suing Hyatt, alleging negligence led to her suffering injuries in the shower.

The woman filed a complaint Sept. 28 in the Ninth Judicial Circuit Court in Florida Orange County against Hyatt Corporation alleging they failed to use ordinary care to maintain their premises in a safe condition.

According to the complaint, on Sept. 22, 2015, the woman sustained serious injuries on the side of her neck when the shower head in a Hyatt Regency of Orlando bathroom suddenly dislodged and struck her. The suit says this caused her to violently twist her body and fall full force onto her right arm, neck and shoulder area.

As a result, she says she suffered bodily injuries, resulting in pain and suffering, disability, mental anguish, medical expenses and loss of earnings.

Sometimes something as simple as bathing can be a hazardous activity. Injuries from falls in the bathroom, particularly when getting in and out of a shower or tub, are common occurrences.

Bathroom falls typically mean violent contact with hard surfaces, which may result in traumatic brain injuries, back, hip or spinal injuries, neck fractures, or broken bones. If you suffered a serious injury from a hotel bathroom fall, you may still be dealing with the after effects.

If the hotel where you fell did not provide reasonable accommodations to protect you from an accident, you may be able to file an injury claim against the hotel for failing to provide a reasonably safe environment. Our South Florida Slip, Trip & Fall Injury Lawyers at Whittel & Melton can help you pursue potential compensation for your medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering.

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Florida lawmakers are discussing a potential law that would make helmets mandatory for motorcycle riders under 21.

Sen. Keith Perry’s (R-Gainesville) bill would change the helmet exemption from 16 to 21. Under the change, drivers over 21 must have an insurance policy for at least $10,000 to ride without a helmet.

Any motorcyclist under 21 not wearing a helmet would be charged with a traffic infraction.

According to AAA, motorcycle accident deaths in Florida are up 30 percent since 2014, with 606 motorcyclists losing their lives in 2015 alone.

Lawmakers have tried and failed to bring back the mandatory helmet law the legislature repealed in 2000.

The new bill would require that motorcyclists and moped drivers under the age of 21 wear helmets.

Still, the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration finds it’s not young people but motorcyclists 40 and over who are more likely to die in accidents: that age group comprised 54 percent of motorcycle fatalities in 2015.

One of every five motorcycle crashes reported results in head or neck injuries. Head injuries are are far more common in motorcycle crashes. Research shows that wearing a helmet reduces the risk of neck or head injury. Most crashes on a motorcycle happen on shorter trips and even with low-speed crashes, there can be a fatality. For most riders who are travelling at around 30 miles an hour when they get get involved in a crash, helmets can cut both the number and the severity of injuries by half. Regardless of what speed a motorcyclist is travelling at, not wearing a helmet places you at an increased risk of suffering from a head injury or wrongful death than riders who are wearing helmets at the time of the crash.

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A 2-year-old boy drowned Saturday afternoon after he wandered into the pool at his Westside home, according to the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office.

The boy’s father and stepmother were with him at the home.

The boy’s father went to check on the boy Saturday afternoon, thinking the toddler was asleep in his room. When he wasn’t there, the father looked for him and found the boy in the backyard pool, quickly pulling him out and beginning CPR.

When firefighters arrived, they continued CPR and took the boy to Orange Park Medical Center, where he died.

Police said the in-ground pool was gated and there were several obstacles to the child getting to the pool, but they were ones the toddler could get through, like a screen door.

There have been 43 reported drownings over the last six years reported to the Department of Children and Families since 2012 in Jacksonville.

Police are investigating the incident, but no foul play is suspected. The Department of Children and Families will be notified.

There are approximately 3,300 drowning deaths per year, according to a report by the CDC. That means there are an alarming 10 deaths per day nationwide. One in five of these drowning deaths involve a child. Tragically, almost all drowning deaths in swimming pools are the result of negligence and are entirely preventable.

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A woman is suing Walt Disney Parks and Resorts US Inc. for alleged negligence.

The woman filed a complaint on Aug. 3 in the Orange County Circuit Court, alleging that the Disney failed to follow applicable safety guidelines and regulations.

According to the complaint, the woman alleges that she was a guest at the amusement park on May 3, 2016 when she fell due to a broken and defective sidewalk. The woman claims that she suffered disability, mental anguish and incurred medical expenses as a result of the fall.

She holds Disney responsible for allegedly failing to properly inspect the property, maintain its sidewalk and warn guests of the dangerous conditions.

Property owners have an obligation to keep their properties safe from unreasonably dangerous conditions such as defective sidewalks, uneven steps, and even spills on the floor. However, all too often people are injured on another person’s property because of an unsafe condition that the owner knew about and failed to repair.

Our Florida Premises Liability Lawyers at Whittel & Melton can help you if you have been injured on another person’s property. We will investigate your injury to help determine the cause, and help you pursue compensation for your injuries.

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A Stuart couple was hospitalized this week after suffering carbon monoxide poisoning while running a generator in their home, according to the Martin County Health Department.

The couple was brought to a hospital Tuesday after complaining of shortness of breath and chest pain. They remain in the hospital, the health department said.

At least four families in Palm Beach County suffered carbon monoxide poisoning this week after keeping running generators in closed garages, according to health officials.

As of Thursday afternoon, 16,740 customers in Martin County were still without power because of Hurricane Irma, according to the Florida Power & Light website.

In Palm Beach County, 156,150 customers were still without power.

Our Florida Injury Lawyers at Whittel & Melton strongly urge you to read through the operating manual before you operate a generator so that you fully understand how the machine works. You can avoid injury by always following the manufacturer’s guidelines and keeping the following safety tips in mind:

  • Never use a generator in an enclosed space. Carbon dioxide produced by the engine can build up, causing potentially fatal fumes.
  • When using a generator, keep it outdoors and at least 5 feet away from windows, vents, and doors.
  • Always use a battery-operated carbon-dioxide detector when you are running a generator. Make sure the batteries are new.
  • Before refueling the generator, allow it to cool for a minimum of two minutes, since gasoline vapors are extremely flammable. Use fresh gasoline, or stabilize gas with a fuel stabilizer if you do not use the generator for 30 days.
  • Make sure that you follow the maintenance schedule that is recommended by the manufacturer.
  • If you must use an extension cord, make sure it is rated for generator use and that it is grounded.
  • Power generators should never be plugged into a home outlet.

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A restaurant customer is suing Taco Bell of America LLC for alleged negligence.

The man filed a complaint on July 21 in the Orange County Circuit Court, alleging that Taco Bell failed to provide a safe environment for its patrons.

According to the complaint, the man alleges that he was walking towards the exit of the restaurant on Sept. 2, 2016 when he slipped and fell on a puddle of water on the floor. He allegedly suffered bodily injury, pain and suffering, the aggravation of a pre-existing condition, disfigurement, disability, mental anguish and medical expenses.

The man holds Taco Bell responsible for allegedly failing to warn him of the dangerous condition, and for allegedly failing to train its employees to properly maintain and inspect the obstructed walkway.

Restaurants, including fast food chains, owe a duty of care to people who visit their properties. Customers have the right to expect a store owner and manager to maintain safe conditions in these establishments.

Restaurants have responsibilities to their customers. If you suffered food poisoning, slipped and fell in a restroom, or otherwise suffered injury in a Florida restaurant or on the premises, we encourage you to speak with our Florida Negligence & Premises Liability Lawyers at Whittel & Melton today. You may be entitled to compensation from the owner of a restaurant to cover your damages, including:

  • Medical bills
  • Lost wages
  • Pain and suffering

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