Category Archives: Premises Liability

What Small Business Owners Need to Know: Workplace Accidents

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Are you a small business owner?

Are you prepared for the risk of workplace incidents?

Although more workplace incidents occur in large manufacturing companies, the incident rate of workplace incidents is similar in both large and small businesses.  But small businesses typically don’t have the infrastructure in place to manage workplace incidents.  Thus, one safety incident can result in increased workers’ compensation insurance premiums, putting a major strain on a small business’ ability to maintain a competitive edge in the marketplace.  Additionally, workplace incidents reduce worker productivity and can negatively affect company morale.

What are common causes of workplace incidents?

Workplace incidents can be caused by a variety of factors ranging from fatigue to hazardous materials.  Here are a few of the more common causes:

  • Repetitive Movements – Leading to injuries and Carpal Tunnel Syndrome.
  • Fatigue – Working beyond exhaustion, resulting in impaired judgement and lack of attention.
  • Stress — Causing distraction and a higher risk of making mistakes. Furthermore, stress increases risk of hypertension, heart attack, stroke, and other health problems.
  • Collisions — Moving quickly through hallways and colliding with another person or object, causing injuries, especially if carrying sharp objects or hot liquids.
  • Slips and Falls – Slip and fall injuries caused by slippery substances not properly cleaned up, objects left in walkways, or carpet or cords not properly secured.
  • Lifting Objects – Risking injury by lifting objects that are too heavy or without using proper lifting techniques/body positioning.
  • Hazardous Materials – Failure to use proper protection which may result in burns, explosions and health problems.
  • Falling Objects — Risking injury from falling objects on high shelves or cabinets.
  • Workplace Violence – Disgruntled employees or estranged spouses seeking revenge against another in the workplace.

Small business owners should lower workplace incident risks by:

  • Taking time to put proper workplace safety measures in place, installing proper signage, performing regular safety assessments, providing safety training, and being proactive with potential risks.
  • Preventing injuries by keeping common areas free of obstacles, keeping all areas well-lit, and cleaning up any spills quickly.
  • Working with staff to reduce repetitive stress movements by building breaks into the schedule, using ergonomic tools, and installing proper lighting.
  • Ensuring that workers wear proper protective clothing when working with hazardous materials.
  • Providing safety training and proper equipment so that employees doing heavy lifting are wearing back braces and using proper lifting techniques to protect against injury.
  • Training staff members how to reduce stress and avoid distraction that can cause workplace accidents.
  • Securing furniture and items on top so that objects won’t come tumbling down if the structure gets bumped.
  • Encouraging employees to think about safety, reminding employees to follow policies and procedures, and instituting incentives for focusing on safety.

In addition, prepare your business in the case of a workplace incident by:

  • Keeping a comprehensive first-aid kit that employees can quickly access in case of an injury.
  • Purchasing good insurance from a reliable agent.
  • Maintaining an incident report log with details in case there is ever a workers’ compensation claim.

The costs of workplace injuries for a small business can be significant, affecting productivity and the bottom line.  But taking the steps above will help you to provide a safer work environment that can drive productivity and employee morale.

Goldman & Daszkal, P.A.

Since 1990, Goldman & Daszkal, P.A. has provided reputable legal representation to people throughout the state of Florida.  The firm has helped thousands of individuals recover compensation from motor vehicle and boating accidents, slip and fall accidents, product defect and liability cases, pharmacy errors, and negligent security cases to cover medical expenses, pay bills, take care of their families, and return to work.  Goldman & Daszkal, P.A. can help you get the relief you need to start living your life again after a serious injury.  For a free and confidential consultation, contact Goldman & Daszkal, P.A., at (954) 428-9333.

 

What Small Business Owners Need to Know: Property Liability Lawsuits

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As a small business owner, you probably have your hands full directing your business, supervising employees, managing logistics, selecting the right vendors, and dealing with customers.

Unless your small business is a law office, chances are that property liability is probably not at the top of your list…in fact, it may not even be on your list… but it should be!

Here’s why!

Several studies across the insurance industry indicate that at least 40% of all small businesses will experience general or property liability claims within the next ten years.  That’s nearly half of all small businesses!

As a small business owner, you need to be aware of potential liabilities, and how to prevent and mediate them.

Here are the top 10 risks and liabilities for small businesses:

  • Burglary and Theft
  • Water and Freezing Damage
  • Fire Damage
  • Wind and Hail Damage
  • Customer Injury and Damage
  • Customer Slip and Fall
  • Product Liability
  • Reputational Harm
  • Vehicle Accident
  • Individual Hit by Object

When any of these claims arise, they can be costly.

As a small business owner, you need to take basic precautions to avoid claims and lawsuits.  Here are some suggestions to get started:

  1. Evaluate your potential risks and consider purchasing a basic commercial general liability insurance policy for as little as $500 that can cover up to $1 million. Select a reputable insurance agent who can help you determine the best insurance for your business.  Once you purchase insurance, reassess annually.
  1. Prevent injuries and liability claims by inspecting and monitoring workplace conditions.
  1. Detect and correct any potentially unsafe conditions in the workplace and around the office building. Be sure to prepare for snow, ice, flooding, or other dangerous conditions that could affect an employee or customer entering the workplace.  Your liability doesn’t end at the front door.
  1. Create policies and procedures so your employees will be on the lookout for unsafe conditions and correct them promptly.
  1. If any potential hazards can’t be resolved immediately, put out clear warning signs for all employees and customers.
  1. Conduct background checks on all employees prior to hiring.
  1. Create and update emergency plans annually for fires, hurricanes, and other natural disasters.
  1. Keep the building exterior clear of debris and equipment. If the weather is extremely cold, take precautions to avoid freezing pipes.
  1. Establish a safety program for employees that drive as part of their job.
  1. Ensure images or wording used in marketing materials, on your website or on social media are not copyrighted.
  1. Use good judgement when talking about competitors and other businesses. Reputational harm is a serious liability.

Finally, as your business expands, so will your potential liabilities.  It’s critical that you reassess and update your insurance policy as your business grows.

Putting the right insurance in place and establishing good policies and procedures in the workplace will position you to run a successful business!

Goldman & Daszkal, P.A.

Since 1990, Goldman & Daszkal, P.A. has provided reputable legal representation to people throughout the state of Florida.  The firm has helped thousands of individuals recover compensation from motor vehicle and boating accidents, slip and fall accidents, product defect and liability cases, pharmacy errors, and negligent security cases to cover medical expenses, pay bills, take care of their families, and return to work.  Goldman & Daszkal, P.A. can help you get the relief you need to start living your life again after a serious injury.  For a free and confidential consultation, contact Goldman & Daszkal, P.A., at (954) 428-9333.

 

Florida Trip & Fall Accidents: Premises Liability

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When do “Trip and Falls” happen?

Trip and fall accidents occur when uneven surfaces or objects in a path cause someone to stumble and fall.

What causes “Trip and Falls”?

Some of the most common causes of trip and falls are potholes, broken sidewalks, cracked pavement, uneven floors, damaged stairs, uneven concrete slabs, and broken tiles.  Other tripping hazards include thick rugs, carpeting that is not flush or is bunched, and even poor lighting.

Who is responsible when someone trips and falls?

Property owners, home owners, building or store managers, and landlords have the responsibility to take reasonable care to ensure that their property is safe for customers, tenants or visitors.  Thus, the landlord, property owner, or manager should conduct routine inspections and make maintenance a priority, ensuring that the property is free of any hazards.  If there is a dangerous condition that can’t be immediately fixed, it’s the responsibility of the landlord, owner, or manager to post proper signage alerting all tenants, customers or visitors.

Whether the property is a restaurant, grocery store, office building, public park, or convenience store, premises liability law holds.  The law states that the property owner may be held liable for any injuries sustained by individuals while on their property if the owner does not exercise reasonable care in keeping the premises free from hazardous conditions.

If the owner, landlord, or manager is negligent and fails to keep the property free of hazardous conditions, they can be liable for any injuries that an individual suffers while on the property.  Common injuries from a trip and falls accident include neck, back and extremity injuries such as ankle, knee, elbow and wrists, and in some extreme cases brain injuries may occur.

What should you do if you or a loved one is injured in a trip and fall accident?

If you are injured in a trip and fall accident, call 9-1-1 first for medical help if necessary.  Then, if possible, take pictures of the accident site and jot down notes about what happened as well as the exact location, date and time.  This will be very helpful to build a case.

Next, contact a reputable personal injury attorney with experience handling trip and fall cases.

If the property owner or manager is found to be negligent, the injured individual may receive fair compensation for medical bills, pain and suffering, physical disability, or lost income that was a result of the trip and fall accident.

Goldman & Daszkal, P.A.

Since 1990, Goldman & Daszkal, P.A. has provided reputable legal representation to people throughout the state of Florida.  The firm has helped thousands of individuals recover compensation from motor vehicle and boating accidents, slip and fall accidents, product defect and liability cases, pharmacy errors, and negligent security cases to cover medical expenses, pay bills, take care of their families, and return to work.  Goldman & Daszkal, P.A. can help you get the relief you need to start living your life again after a serious injury.  For a free and confidential consultation, contact Goldman & Daszkal, P.A., at (954) 428-9333.

Premises Liability: Summertime Slip and Falls

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Hot summers in South Florida are usually packed with fun ways to cool off.  Pool gatherings, beach outings, and boating are great ways for South Floridians to enjoy the heat.  Hot summers also translate into informal wardrobes and laid-back attitudes.  It’s not uncommon to see adults and teenagers alike popping into stores to pick up food and beverage in little more than a bathing suit and flip flops.  They may not realize it, but the unsteady flip flops make it easy to take a spill on any smooth surface, and even more so on a floor with some spilled liquids or oils.

Slips, trips, and falls                               

A slip, trip, or fall can happen without warning and can cause injuries ranging from sprains and strains to broken bones and serious spinal cord injuries.  An accident caused by a hazardous condition on someone’s property may also be referred to as a “premises liability” in the legal world.  Premises liabilities can may include tripping on a poorly maintained sidewalk or slipping on a floor that has not been cleaned of hazardous debris.  What may seem like an inconsequential injury should be taken seriously because the full extent of the injury may only be seen days later.  In other words, after a slip or trip and fall injury, get evaluated by a medical professional.

Property owners must take reasonable care

Property owners are required to take reasonable care to ensure that their property is safe.  This is true not only for grocery stores, but also for office buildings, retail stores, as well as residential homes and land owners.  Although invitees may have different classifications under the law, generally speaking, it is the property owner’s responsibility to fix any hazards or warn any visitors or tenants of any unsafe conditions on the property if they are unable to fix the problem.  Hazardous conditions may include slip and falls due to a foreign substance or tripping on debris or uneven sidewalks/pavers due to a poorly maintained building or common area.

Since property owners have the obligation to keep visitors safe, if an injury is sustained on a premise due to owner negligence, the owner of the premises may be liable. If the injured person can prove that the owner was aware of, or should have been aware of a potential hazard on the property but did nothing to correct it, or failed to warn them of the hazardous condition, the injured person may be eligible to receive injury compensation including medical bills, pain and suffering, and lost wages related to the injury.

What to do after suffering an injury

If you or a loved one sustained an injury due to unsafe conditions at a commercial establishment or private location, you may have a claim for damages.  Here are the steps you should take to prepare yourself or your loved one in case you need to file a claim:

  1. Contact 9-1-1 or seek medical attention immediately if you are injured.
  1. Report the accident immediately to the “property owner” (store manager, homeowner, or landlord.)
  1. Gather evidence by snapping photos of the location, your injuries, and any contributing factors to the fall. Make detailed notes of any dangerous conditions that caused the incident and note date, time, and clothing/shoes worn.  Save clothing or shoes worn during the incident.
  1. Request contact information of witnesses or anyone with whom you discussed the incident (names, addresses, and telephone numbers.)
  1. Avoid discussing your injuries and feelings other than with your attorney, police, or emergency professionals.

Once you receive medical treatment, we recommend that you find an experienced personal injury attorney to represent you and recover any lost wages and injury compensation to which you are entitled.  Goldman & Daszkal, P.A., is a reputable Florida based law firm and has been representing those injured in personal injury claims for the past 27 years.

When you contact Goldman & Daszkal, P.A., the firm will provide a free consultation to help you understand your rights and obligations.  A firm representative can meet with you at the law office or at a convenient location for you.  Then, your attorney can then take over the handling of your claim and contacting any remaining parties, allowing you to have peace of mind while you recover.

Goldman & Daszkal, P.A.

Since 1990, Goldman & Daszkal, P.A. has provided reputable legal representation to people throughout Palm Beach, Broward, and Miami-Dade Counties.  For a free and confidential consultation, contact Goldman & Daszkal, P.A., at (954) 428-9333.

 

Celebrating Safely on St. Patrick’s Day

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While partygoers nationwide are donning their bright green shirts and drinking chartreuse-tinted drinks at themed St. Patrick’s Day parties, law enforcement officers are prepared and out on the streets looking for drivers who should not be on the road.

There are a few specific days throughout the year that the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) observes a spike in serious vehicle accidents and fatalities related to drunk driving.  One of those spikes occurs in March each year — on St. Patrick’s Day. 

According to the NHTSA, approximately 40% of all vehicle accident fatalities around St. Patrick’s Day in 2013 were linked to driving under the influence.  Moreover, looking back at the statistics from 2009 to 2013, we can see that over 75% of the drunk driving fatalities involved drivers who had consumed at least double the legal limit of alcohol.

Here’s what you need to do before going out on St. Patrick’s Day:

  • Make your Patrick’s Day plans and designate a safe, sober driver, also known as the Very Important Partygoer (VIP).
  • Make sure your Uber or Lyft apps are ready to go just in case you need it. And you can always call a taxi.
  • Before you drink, leave your keys with a responsible person who is not going to drink.
  • Celebrate the person who agrees to be the designated driver. Instead of posting your own personal pictures or drinks, make the night about your Very Important Partygoer (VIP) on social media.
  • Check on your other friends and family members to ensure they have a VIP and a clear plan in place to get home safely.

Keep in mind that if you have a party and alcohol is served, you could be liable if one of your partygoers ends up in a crash linked to driving under the influence.  As an alternative, collect keys at your door and let guests stay or call a taxi or ride sharing service to get them home safely.

For St. Patrick’s Day and for every holiday, we encourage you to enjoy the celebrations, drink responsibly, and always have a sober way home.

Goldman & Daszkal, P.A.

Since 1990, Goldman & Daszkal, P.A. has provided reputable legal representation to people throughout Palm Beach, Broward, and Miami-Dade Counties.  The firm has helped thousands of individuals recover compensation from motor vehicle and boating accidents, slip and fall accidents, product defect and liability cases, pharmacy errors, and negligent security cases to cover medical expenses, pay bills, take care of their families, and return to work.  Goldman & Daszkal, P.A. can help you get the relief you need to start living your life again after a serious injury.  For a free and confidential consultation, contact Goldman & Daszkal, P.A., at (954) 428-9333.

Spring Break – Ready to Rent Your Place?

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Have you ever booked your vacation accommodations through vacation property rental sites like AirBnB or HomeAway?

Have you ever considered renting out your property as a vacation rental? 

With the growth in the peer-to-peer (P2P) property rental market in the last few years, individuals across the United States are discovering a relatively simple, straight forward new revenue stream — renting out their homes via internet-based property rental companies such as AirBnb, VRBO, Flipkey and HomeAway.

If renting your home as a vacation rental is a tempting proposal, read these important tips before you sign up!

In the United States, people are realizing that they may be able to rent out all or part of their home for up to 14 days per year, tax-free.  The income from the two week rental may be a nice bonus, especially if it’s for a property you only use occasionally.  To find out if you are able to rent out your property and how to account for related taxes, consult with local property rental laws and a qualified accountant.

If you are considering renting out your place for over two weeks per year, you may be able to deduct  direct expenses related to renting out your home, including rental agency, advertising, cleaning, and repair costs.  To find out how to structure your rental property lease and taxes, consult your accountant and the property rental company of your choice.

 But what about property liability?

Although vacation rental property companies witness few incidents of major property damage, minor scratches and damage to furniture and the interior of the home is common.  How can you protect your property and the individuals renting it?

  1. Meet with your insurance agent and select an insurance policy that is optimal for you, your home, and the regularity with which you plan to rent out your home. If you rent out your home frequently, you may want to consider a landlord insurance policy or something similar that protects your home, furniture, appliances, as well as lost rental income due to damage, legal fees, and liability protection.   Another option is to require guests to purchase damage protection to cover any accidental damage.
  2. Make sure you include an ample refundable damage deposit in the agreement to deter potential renter carelessness and provide a means to repair damage.
  3. Keep updated photos of each room of the home as reference.
  4. Carefully document any damage with photos stamped with the date and time.  Include notes about the findings.
  5. Put a protocol in place for anyone who may visit the property during or after renter stays (e.g., cleaning or maintenance contractor.) Ensure that the protocol addresses what they should do if they find any damage.
  6. If the damage is small, you may want to consider it as general “wear-and-tear”.
  7. If there is more than basic “wear-and-tear” damage, take time to investigate the situation before making any assumptions. Contact the renter to discuss the damage; ask neighbors if they saw or heard anything.
  8. Depending on the extent of the damage, you will need to 1) consider whether it makes sense to keep the deposit, 2) determine if you should pursue an insurance claim, 3) decide that the damage is part of the property rental business and return a partial or full deposit, or 4) consider legal action.  Keep in mind that your decision – even if it’s completely justified –  may also be reflected as a negative review for your property on your vacation rental booking site.
  9. If you plan to make a claim against your property insurance for the damage, consult with your insurance agent first.
  10. If the damage was significant and the deposit won’t begin to cover it, it may be time to consider legal options. Consult a law firm with expertise in property liability such as Goldman & Daszkal, P.A.

Goldman & Daszkal, P.A.

Since 1990, Goldman & Daszkal, P.A. has provided reputable legal representation to people throughout Palm Beach, Broward, and Miami-Dade Counties.  The firm has helped thousands of individuals recover compensation from motor vehicle and boating accidents, slip and fall accidents, product defect and liability cases, pharmacy errors, and negligent security cases to cover medical expenses, pay bills, take care of their families, and return to work.  Goldman & Daszkal, P.A. can help you get the relief you need to start living your life again after a serious injury.  For a free and confidential consultation, contact Goldman & Daszkal, P.A., at (954) 428-9333.

Safety Alert: Natural Gas Leaks

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natural gas leak - Underground pipelines transport natural gas and account for nearly 25% of our nation’s energy use.  We use this energy to heat and cool our homes, to cook and clean, as well as to power manufacturing plants throughout the country.[1]

Liquid and gas pipelines are buried underground throughout all 50 states.  Over 2.5 million miles of pipeline exist in the United States, and these pipelines are operated by over 3,000 different companies.  Gas distribution channels make up an underground network, and it’s critical to understand where the pipelines are before ever digging into the ground.  Digging without permission could mean striking a pipeline and causing an explosion.  Before you dig, call 811 or dial 1-888-258-0808 to confirm that there aren’t any pipelines at your location and it’s safe to dig.

According to the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA), there were 701 natural gas pipeline incidents reported in 2015.  The number of annual incidents has increased significantly since the late 1990s, when the number of incidents reached a low of 389.  Even though there have been nearly double the incidents in 2015 as in the late 1990s, the good news is that the number of fatalities and injuries has decreased.

PHMSA Pipeline Incidents: Count (1996-2015) [2] Incident Type: All Reported  System Type: ALL

PHMSA Pipeline Incidents

Data Source: US DOT Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration

Although relatively infrequent, natural gas leaks can occur in or around the home.  If you notice any of the following, you should leave the location immediately and dial 911.

  • “Rotten egg” odor which is added to natural gas
  • Hissing sound near appliances
  • Bubbles, mist, or fog near ponds
  • Dirt blowing without wind
  • Dry spots amidst green plants close to gas line markers
  • Flames

If you think there may be a gas leak, do not turn anything on or off, including lights and flashlights.  Stay away from any gas valves and matches.  Don’t use your phone nor take pictures.  And don’t turn on your vehicle to avoid sparks or an explosion.

Most gas leaks are resolved quickly by the gas company emergency experts.  However, gas leaks can result in serious fires and explosions.  If you or someone you know has experienced an injury related to a natural gas leak, seek medical help immediately and then contact an experienced law firm to help you understand your rights.

Goldman & Daszkal, P.A.

Since 1990, Goldman & Daszkal, P.A. has provided reputable legal representation to people throughout Palm Beach, Broward, and Miami-Dade Counties.  The firm has helped thousands of individuals recover compensation from motor vehicle and boating accidents, slip and fall accidents, product defect and liability cases, pharmacy errors, and negligent security cases to cover medical expenses, pay bills, take care of their families, and return to work.  Goldman & Daszkal, P.A. can help you get the relief you need to start living your life again after a serious injury.  For a free and confidential consultation, contact Goldman & Daszkal, P.A., at (954) 428-9333.

[1] https://hip.phmsa.dot.gov/analyticsSOAP/saw.dll?Portalpages

[2] https://hip.phmsa.dot.gov/analyticsSOAP/saw.dll?Portalpages

Flying Safely: In-Flight Aviation Injuries

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SBTravelTips

Air travel is one of the safest types of transportation.  But, on board, airplanes are cramped — fitting dozens of passengers in relatively small areas.  Because passengers and flight attendants need to move through very tight spaces, in-flight incidents occur from time to time, causing injuries.  Injuries during flights may also stem from defective equipment, weather, or human error.   The most common in-flight injuries are related to overhead bin luggage and service carts in the aisles, but burns from scalding liquids and slip and falls are also common.

Read on to learn how to avoid potential injuries during your flight.

Overhead Bins

Please use caution when opening the overhead bins as items may have shifted during the flight.”  You’ve heard the flight attendants announce it hundreds of times.  Passengers may grab their laptops or other items from the overhead bins during flights.  If another passenger isn’t careful and you are sitting in an aisle seat below the bin, you could be at risk of injury from falling baggage.  To avoid potential injuries from falling baggage, stay alert and keep children in the center or window seats.

Service Carts

Use caution when flight attendants are pushing the service carts through the aisles.  Many injuries occur each year when these heavy metal food carts ram into passenger’s ankles, knees and shoulders.

Hot Liquids

When flight attendants pour and serve coffee and tea on flights, they must exercise caution.  The possibility of a passenger or flight attendant knocking them while they are pouring can cause them to spill a scalding liquid on a passenger.  Quick, emergency attention is required for these types of burns.  Be alert when flight attendants are offering coffee and tea, and keep children away from aisles at that time.

Turbulence

It’s not uncommon to experience turbulence during air travel.  When the pilot turns on the “fasten seat belt” sign, take the warning seriously and head to your seat as quickly as possible.

Bathroom Breaks

Passengers are injured each year in slip and fall accidents while heading to the bathroom.  Take care when entering and moving around in the bathroom as floors may be wet.

Legal Claims

If you or a loved one suffered an injury during a flight, you could potentially have a legal claim against the airline, the manufacturer, crew members, or the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA.)  These legal claims require an in-depth understanding of airline safety and FAA rules and regulations.  If you have questions about an injury on a flight, or travel and the law, Goldman & Daszkal, P.A. can answer them.

On behalf of the attorneys and staff at Goldman & Daszkal, P.A., we wish you and your loved ones safe travels and a wonderful spring break!

 

Goldman & Daszkal, P.A.

888-504-HURT (4878)

www.goldmandszkal.com

 

Ready to Rent? What You Need to Know Before Booking a Vacation Rental

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Vacation Home Rental Injuries

Traveling this spring break with your family?  You’re probably well aware of the growing market for vacation rentals throughout the U.S. and internationally.  If you’re seeking comfortable accommodations that easily fit a family of 4, 6, or even 10, a vacation home rental may be perfect for your family.  The combination of multiple bedrooms, a full kitchen, and a separate living area make vacation home rentals superior to most hotel options for large groups and families with young children.  In addition, many rentals include washing machines and clothes dryers as well as bikes, canoes, toys and games for your use.

Whether this is your first time booking a vacation rental or you’ve rented multiple times, here are a few important tips you should consider when renting:

Do Your Homework

  • Use established, reputable vacation rental marketplaces such as AirBNB, HomeAway, FlipKey or VRBO
  • Be aware that some cities, such as New York City and San Francisco, have banned home vacation rentals for short-term rentals (less than one month.) Do your homework, verify the owner, and check local laws to be sure you don’t book a rental that could be closed for violating local laws.
  • Be especially careful when setting up international transactions: there is minimal legal recourse  beyond ordinary contract law and no specific government agency is set up to regulate international rentals.

Verify the Property

  • If the photos look amazing, the price is overly affordable, and it seems “too good to be true,” it probably is. Trust your instincts and find out why the price doesn’t match the assumed property value.  If you’re still skeptical, move on to another listing.
  • Don’t rely on your friends’ assessment of the property; she may be relying on yours. Be sure to take the time to review the property, location, and owner info in detail before committing.
  • Contact the homeowners association, if applicable, or the cleaning or maintenance company to verify ownership.
  • If possible, check out the property prior to the actual vacation 

Pay with Care

  • Prior to issuing any payment, request a complete rental contract with vacation dates, total price, price breakdown with taxes, cleaning fees, etc.
  • Understand the cancellation, check-in and check-out policies and be sure you have the correct contact information in case there is a problem with the rental
  • Pay with a credit card to protect your payment
  • Consider registering with a trip protection service (many are offered through the larger rental marketplaces.) 

Inspect Upon Arrival

  • Once you arrive, take a few minutes to inspect the home, checking the air conditioning/heating, faucets, doorknobs, toilets, telephone, TV and other electronics, appliances as well as checking for any leaks, cracked drywall, etc. If you find anything, be sure to take pictures and send it in writing to the owner immediately.
  • Avoid accidents by taking special care when using unfamiliar appliances as they may function differently from what you are accustomed. Take caution when using showers and faucets as water may be hotter than you expect.

On behalf of Goldman & Daszkal, P.A., we wish you a fun and safe vacation!

If you or a loved one has suffered an injury due to a slip and fall accident or as the result of an appliance or equipment malfunction at a vacation home or other accommodation, contact Goldman & Daszkal, P.A. to learn the steps you need to take now to protect yourself and your family.

Goldman & Daszkal, P.A.

Since 1990, Goldman & Daszkal, P.A. has provided reputable legal representation to people throughout Palm Beach, Broward, and Miami-Dade Counties.  The firm has helped thousands of individuals recover compensation from motor vehicle and boating accidents, slip and fall accidents, product defect and liability cases, pharmacy errors, and negligent security cases to cover medical expenses, pay bills, take care of their families, and return to work.  Goldman & Daszkal, P.A. can help you get the relief you need to start living your life again after a serious injury.  For a free and confidential consultation, contact Goldman & Daszkal, P.A., at (954) 428-9333.

 

Thanksgiving: Keeping it fun, delicious, and safe!

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Thanksgiving Turkey Safety Tips

Did you know that Thanksgiving Day is the leading day for home cooking fires?

Statistics show that cooking fires are three times more likely to occur on Thanksgiving Day as compared to other days throughout the year.  In fact, the National Fire Protection Agency (NFPA) indicated that there were over 1,370 fires on Thanksgiving Day, 2010.  Many of these fires are caused by people attempting to deep fry turkeys, and the result is over $15 million in property damage along with serious burns and life threatening injuries.

Why are there so many Thanksgiving Day fires?

  • Hectic Holidays

Individuals preparing holiday dinners may get distracted while entertaining family and friends, potentially leaving food on the stove without proper supervision.  Over 2/3 of these home cooking fires are started when food or cooking materials are accidentally set ablaze.[1]

  • Turkey Fryers

The NFPA states that fryers “are not suitable for safe use by even a well-informed and careful consumer.” According to the NFPA, “these turkey fryers use a substantial quantity of cooking oil at high temperatures and units currently available for home use pose a significant danger that hot oil will be released at some point during the cooking process. In addition, the burners that heat the oil can ignite spilled oil. The use of turkey fryers by consumers can lead to devastating burns, other injuries, and the destruction of property.”[2]  If you would like to have a fried turkey for your holiday, the NFPA strongly recommends finding grocery stores or restaurants that professionally prepare fried turkeys.

  • Tackling the Fire Solo

55% of home cooking fire injuries occur when individuals try to fight a fire without           professional help. [3]  Don’t take firefighting into your own hands.  Call 911 and explain the situation.  The fire department will quickly dispatch a team of trained professionals to fight the fire with proper equipment.

 So, what can you do to reduce the risk of a fire occurring in your home?

  • Do not leave your stovetop unattended. Always keep a close watch when frying, grilling or broiling food.
  • When cooking a turkey in the oven, use a timer, check on the turkey frequently, and do not leave your home. Similarly, when boiling, baking, simmering, or broiling, ensure someone is at home to time and check on the food regularly.
  • Keep flammable items such as oven mitts and wooden spoons away from the stovetop.
  • Keep children at least 3-4 feet away from the heating elements in the kitchen. Ensure that children are away from any hot food, sauces, or liquids.
  • Maintain knives, matches, lighters and electric cords out of reach of children. In addition, keep small appliances such as coffee makers and plate warmers far away from their reach.
  • Never leave children near a lit candle.
  • Test your smoke alarms regularly. Change the batteries annually.
  • If you are very tired or have consumed more than a glass or two of alcoholic beverages, don’t cook. It’s not worth the risk.
Content partially adapted from the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) http://www.nfpa.org

If a fire does start, quickly leave the home, closing any doors behind you.  Immediately call 911 from a safe location.  If possible, turn off the oven and stovetop and put a lid on any pans to smother potential grease fires.

Furthermore, don’t allow your home to become a statistic.  Follow the aforementioned tips so that you and your loved ones can enjoy a fun, delicious, and safe holiday.  Happy Thanksgiving!

Have you been injured while someone else was cooking or frying a turkey?  Were you injured while cooking it yourself and feel there may be a defect in the fryer or oven that caused your injury?

Goldman and Daszkal, P.A., may be able to help.  Contact us at (954) 428-9333 or www.goldmandaszkal.com.

 Goldman & Daszkal, P.A.

Since 1990, Goldman & Daszkal, P.A. has provided reputable legal representation to people throughout Palm Beach, Broward, and Miami-Dade Counties.  The firm has helped thousands of individuals recover compensation from motor vehicle and boating accidents, slip and fall accidents, product defect and liability cases, pharmacy errors, and negligent security cases to cover medical expenses, pay bills, take care of their families, and return to work.  Goldman & Daszkal, P.A. can help you get the relief you need to start living your life again after a serious injury.  For a free and confidential consultation, contact Goldman & Daszkal, P.A., at (954) 428-9333.

[1] U.S. Fire Administration, FEMA.  http://www.usfa.fema.gov/prevention/outreach/cooking.html
[2] National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) http://www.nfpa.org/safety-information/for-consumers/causes/cooking/safety-with-cooking-equipment/turkey-fryers
[3] U.S. Fire Administration, FEMA.  http://www.usfa.fema.gov/prevention/outreach/cooking.html