February 22, 2013—Albany, New York—The New York Court of Appeals ruled recently in a case involving the wrongful death of a man at a Bally Total Fitness health club. In 2007, the gentleman collapsed at the health club and an ambulance was called. Ambulance personnel gave the victim shocks from an AED or automatic external defibrillator, but were unable to revive him.
The victim’s family sued because they claimed that the health club had an AED available but failed to use it. Had they done so, the family claims that the victim’s life might have been saved. Bally, in turn, argued immunity from liability due to the state’s Good Samaritan Law.
The New York Supreme Court denied Bally’s motion to dismiss the case and the Appellate Court upheld that decision. Specifically, the Supreme Court noted that the law imposed an “affirmative care duty” upon health clubs; AEDs are required by law to be available the health clubs are required to use them.
The Appellate Court disagreed slightly with the Supreme Court’s interpretation of business law but affirmed that the plaintiff had a viable cause of action under common law.
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In a follow up to a press release posted in November, the husband of Vilma Soltesz, a morbidly obese woman who died in Hungary while waiting for a flight home to the United States, has filed a $6 million wrongful death lawsuit against three major airlines. According to an ABC News report, the suit that was filed in New York City, names Delta Airlines, KLM and Lufthansa.
According to court documents, Vilma Soltesz and her husband, Janos Soltesz, flew from New York in mid-September to Budapest, Hungary, connecting through Amsterdam. They purchased three seats in all – two for Vilma and one for Janos. In early October, the couple tried to return when Vilma Soltesz began to feel ill. Soltesz weighed 407 pounds, had an amputated leg and was wheelchair-bound. Read the rest »
Anthony Duran, 14, was killed in an Orange County DUI accident after a suspected drunk driver struck him. According to a news report in The Orange County Register, the fatal pedestrian accident occurred on Rose Drive near Castner Drive in Placentia, the night of January 11, 2013.
Police say the boy was riding his skateboard north on Rose Drive when a vehicle hit him. The driver of the car was booked on suspicion of driving under the influence, but was released pending further investigation. Police are also looking into whether speed was a factor. Duran was transported to an area hospital where he died from his injuries. The investigation is ongoing.
According to California Highway Patrol’s 2010 Statewide Integrated Traffic Records System (SWITRS), there were no fatalities, but 17 injuries involving DUI crashes in Placentia. In Orange County as a whole, 45 people were killed and 1,317 were injured due to alcohol-related crashes during the same year. Read the rest »
A widow whose husband died from the fungal meningitis outbreak from contaminated steroid injection has filed a wrongful death lawsuit. This is the first wrongful death suit that has been filed since the outbreak happened.
According to news reports, Diana Rohrer’s filed the complaint in Elkhart, Indiana against the New England Compounding Center and its sister companies – Ameridose, LLC and Aluanus Pharmaceutical LLC. The lawsuit seeks damages, including medical expenses, burial expenses, lost income, loss of love and services and loss of consortium and punitive damages.
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports that as of Nov. 5, there were 29 deaths and 404 infections spread over 19 states. Federal investigators are still looking into how the steroid injections, Methylprednisolone acetate, became contaminated and were allowed to be marketed and used on patients. Read the rest »
Leopoldo Aguirre, 67, was fatally injured in a Santa Ana car accident after he was hit by a vehicle at a street intersection, the evening of November 4, 2012. According to a news report in The Orange County Register, the pedestrian accident occurred at Raitt Street and Monte Vista. Police say Aguirre was transported to an area trauma center where he died from his injuries that night. The driver of the Ford Taurus that struck Aguirre remained at the scene. Alcohol did not appear to have been a factor and no arrests or citations were reported.
I offer my deepest condolences to the family members and friends of Leopoldo Aguirre for their tragic and heartbreaking loss. Please keep them in your thoughts and prayers.
Pedestrian Crash Statistics
According to California Highway Patrol’s 2010 Statewide Integrated Traffic Records System (SWITRS), there were six fatalities and 134 injuries involving pedestrian accidents in Santa Ana. During the same year, 32 people died and 770 were injured due to Orange County pedestrian accidents. Read the rest »
Blair Marcus Proulx, 51, was killed in a Santa Clarita motorcycle accident the evening of October 5, 2012, and his family members are still searching for answers as to how or why this tragedy occurred. According to a news report in The Signal, the fatal motorcycle crash happened in a residential neighborhood on Alta Knoll Drive near Elder Creek Drive. Officials are looking into everything from whether Proulx suffered a medical condition, to whether he may have hit something on the side of the street. Officials say he was not going fast at the time of the crash. So far, investigators do not believe that any other vehicles were involved. The investigation is still ongoing.
I offer my deepest condolences to the family members and friends of Blair Marcus Proulx, who apparently died less than a week before his 52nd birthday. Please keep his grieving family members in your thoughts and prayers.
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