Injured During Summer Vacation?

summer vacation accident

summer vacation accidentA summer vacation in Tampa meant for “fun in the sun” could immediately turn for the worst if you become injured. Whether you have been injured through a car accident or a disaster at a theme park, it would be significant to know when you need to hire a Tampa personal injury lawyer. There are all kinds of ways you can get injured during your summer vacation.

Beyond car and theme park accidents, other common activities can also present danger to vacation-goers. Everyday activities, such as trampolines, dogs, playgrounds, and bicycles, can hold hidden dangers. Some of these particular pastimes are more likely to happen at home and may not require you to obtain a Tampa personal injury lawyer. Hazards are additionally commonplace in recreational activities, including water sports, soccer, ATVs, volleyball, baseball, and softball. Even with the right precautions, however, you may not be able to protect yourself from someone else’s negligence.

Be sure to contact a personal injury lawyer, as immediately as possible, after receiving physical damage due to another person’s carelessness. The most common type of injury reported to Tampa personal injury lawyers is from car accidents. If you were harmed for a different reason, then you may understandably feel confused about whether or not you should contact a lawyer. This is actually the very reason you should connect with an attorney. A professional can give you an evaluation of your situation. An experienced attorney is equipped not only to let you know whether there’s a case but also to help you get every bit of compensation that the law says you deserve.

Once you know that your injury was due to the negligence of another, the next thing you’ll want to do is gather evidence. Take photos, talk to eyewitnesses, and collect other bits of information you can that can prove that the accident was the fault of a particular person or entity. Report this information to a personal injury attorney in Tampa, Florida — one you can trust.

We hope your summer vacation will prove to be everything you hoped it would be. But if your summer did not go well due to injuries caused by negligence, we are here to help. Don’t hesitate to contact our experienced attorneys at Wagner, McLaughlin & Whittemore at 813.225.4000. We would be honored to talk with you. 


malfunctioning fireworks

malfunctioning fireworks

Fireworks are fun to watch and exciting to play with. This is especially true on holidays like the 4th of July. Unfortunately, many people get distracted by the spectacular thrill and beauty of a fireworks display and forget about the inherent dangers involved when handling explosive and flammable materials. Every 4th of July, innocent people are injured because of malfunctioning fireworks or because of another person’s careless handling of fireworks. The types of injuries caused by fireworks can include burns, loss of vision, and even death. If you have been injured by fireworks, experienced Florida personal injury lawyers are there to discuss whether and how to make the responsible party pay for your injuries.

If you or someone you know has been injured by fireworks, don’t just assume that there is nothing that you can do about it. There are many reasons why people are injured by fireworks. Common causes of injuries include malfunctioning fireworks and careless or improper handling of fireworks. In the case of malfunctioning fireworks, the manufacturer may be held liable for producing fireworks that are not reasonably safe to use. The unsafe condition may be due to either a manufacturing flaw or a design flaw. Additionally, a fireworks manufacturer may be liable for failing to provide adequate operating instructions or safety warnings.

Careless or improper handling of fireworks is also a common cause of fireworks-related injuries during the 4th of July holidays. Careless or improper handling of fireworks may be due to inexperience, inattentiveness, intoxication, or many other reasons. Regardless of the reason, people who set off fireworks may be liable for any resulting injuries if they fail to use fireworks in a reasonably safe manner. This applies to people who set off fireworks for both public and private displays.

Wagner, McLaughlin & Whittemore Law Firm

The experienced Tampa personal injury attorneys at Wagner, McLaughlin & Whittemore have been speaking up for injured people since 1967. If you have been injured by fireworks, don’t assume that any lawyer will have the experience and judgment to manage your case well. The lawyer who handled your divorce or DUI case may not have the experience needed to litigate your injury claim. Call the Wagner, McLaughlin & Whittemore law firm to get knowledgeable Tampa personal injury attorneys working on your case.


Medical Malpractice: What is NegligenceMedical Malpractice: What is Negligence
doctor washing hands

If you have been injured due to a negligent doctor, contact us now!

Medical malpractice is the third leading cause of death in America. What is medical malpractice? Simply stated, it is an occurrence where a medical professional or facility does not adhere to the accepted “standard of care” when attending to a patient, and the patient gets hurt as a result. Like most legal topics, what sounds fairly easy and straightforward often is neither.

In order to successfully bring forth a medical malpractice lawsuit, the following is required:

– There must be a past or current doctor-patient relationship.

– The existence of a connection between the adverse effect on the patient and negligence on the medical care provider’s part.

– The provision of medical assistance, or the failure to provide such assistance, to the patient that was below the recognized standard of care.

– Damages sustained by the patient as a result of the medical treatment. Such harms would include unnecessary medical costs, exaggerated medical problems, and/or emotional and psychological pressure.

What exactly constitutes the “standard of care” is one of the most debated topics in medical law. A simple explanation of the “standard of care” is the same care a similarly trained health professional in the same field as the defendant would have provided to you under the same circumstances. In court, the “standard of care” is often determined through fellow doctors’ expert opinions. It is important for potential clients to understand that a bad outcome of treatment does not always rise to the level of medical negligence. Medical negligence is a very complicated issue that depends on a myriad of factors such as the condition itself, the complexity and success rate of the procedure conducted, and whether the damage incurred was a risk of which you were informed.

If you believe you have a medical malpractice case, the first step should be to search for a respected and experienced Tampa medical malpractice attorney. The lawyer will conduct a review of all details associated with your case, and he or she will determine if your case can be taken to court. Like most personal-injury attorneys, Wagner, McLaughlin & Whittemore charges a “contingency fee” – which means that you pay attorneys’ fees only if you receive a recovery from the defendant..

Staying Safe in the Sun: Parasailing
If you have been injured in a parasailing accident, contact us today!

If you have been injured in a parasailing accident, contact us today!

Whether the ocean is a part of your day to day life or the destination of a much-needed vacation, relaxing on the sand is often only the beginning of a fulfilling adventure. Many activities fill the Florida coast, each with a different level of thrill and chill. Parasailing may be a good fit for the adventurer—but make sure you know the risks.

Until recently, parasailing was a largely unregulated activity without any guidelines regarding training for operations, inspection of equipment, or restrictions during weather conditions. Since this activity involves participants suspended hundreds of feet over the surface of the water, it has a high risk factor, even when it is regulated. After a number of tragedies resulted from circumstances such as compromised towlines, incompetent operators, and strong winds, Florida lawmakers passed laws to enhance the safety of this high-risk thrill.

If you’re thinking about parasailing during your beach retreat, here are a few lawful safety tips. First, make sure that there is someone other than the operator of the boat to watch the person being towed. Second, avoid parasailing during unsafe weather conditions, including high wind speeds, or between half an hour after sunset or half an hour before sunrise. Third, always wear your life jacket, no matter which part of the parasailing crew you are.

If you’ve been injured in a parasailing accident, contact an experienced Tampa accident attorney. The Tampa law firm of Wagner, McLaughlin & Whittemore is available for a free consultation today.

Railroad Safety
If you have been injured in a rail road related accident, contact us now!

If you have been injured in a rail road related accident, contact us now!

When we think of railroad accidents, we think of big, attention-grabbing collisions with high death tolls. We remember westerns or old cartoons where the villain ties the hero (or his love interest) to the track to wait for the train to come. But very few of us understand how the railroads that crisscross the United States actually work. Here are some facts about railroads to help keep you safe at every crossing:

1. Railroad schedules are always changing. Passenger trains may have fixed schedules, but they are often running late, and their schedules change on occasion. Furthermore, freight trains don’t have fixed schedules. Even if you’ve never seen a train at a certain crossing at a certain time, there is no guarantee that one won’t be there at the moment you happen to be crossing.
2. Train tracks are private property. Trespassing on them is illegal to minimize that danger. If a train does come, the engineer is (a) unlikely to see you and (b) unable to stop in time. Keep in mind that most trains require more than a mile to stop when traveling at an average speed.
3. Due to the stopping distance, trains have the right of way at all times, even in priority over emergency vehicles.
4. Trains can move in either direction, so no matter how certain you are that a train has passed, double-check in BOTH directions..
5. Because of new technology, trains are getting more and more quiet. Headphones (if you are on a bike) and music can eliminate the sounds of an approaching train, so always stay alert and be prepared for the train to be closer than you think. Crossing only at designated crossways can help this, as signs often work in tandem with the approaching trains.

Stay safe out there! If you’ve been injured in a railroad-related accident, contact the experience Tampa personal injury attorneys at Wagner, McLaughlin & Whittemore for a free consultation today.

Cruise Ship Injury
If you have been injured on a cruise ship, contact us today!

If you have been injured on a cruise ship, contact us today!

With all the excitement of being at sea, caution sometimes takes a backseat to fun. While cruise ships do their best to minimize potential dangers, stairs, sliding doors, and uneven ground can all lead to potential dangers. One of the body parts that cruise-goers most frequently injure is the hand.

Between slip and fall accidents and slamming doors, broken fingers and wrists or sprained ligaments can be very common. While these injuries are often attributed to the injured party not paying attention, it is often the case that the cruise line may be liable for these hand and finger injuries. On cruise ships, there is usually a large number of sliding doors, sliding windows, and automatic systems set up to close these openings. To be efficient, they close often, but that can result in entrapment of a passenger.

In order to find fault in the cruise line for a hand injury, the cruise line must be proven to be negligent. For example, the cruise line’s staff must have been alerted to or otherwise aware of the broken condition but not responded reasonably to correct the dangerous condition.. Further, if the crew’s medical staff was unreasonably inattentive after you injured your hand, you may have a case for negligence.

If you’ve been injured on a cruise ship, seek legal help to understand the rules of personal injury law relating to the cruise ship industry. The experienced Tampa personal injury lawyers at Wagner, McLaughlin & Whittemore are available for a consultation today.

construction site injuries
If you have been injured on the job, contact us TODAY!

If you have been injured on the job, contact us TODAY!

At first glance, the hit show American Ninja Warrior seems to have a lot in common with your run-of-the-mill construction site. Both involve high walls, open beams, strange objects, and questionable handholds. However, there are a lot of things you can do at a construction site to raise your chances of making it through the obstacles.

In American Ninja Warrior, participants are often shirtless and sometimes shoeless. At a construction site, wearing pants, shirts, and shoes are just the beginning. Most sites require safety helmets, and many ask for safety footwear and high visibility jackets or vests as well. The helmet keeps things from falling on your head, while in ANW, it’s more likely that a participant will fall on their own head. High visibility jackets, too, are more important when you don’t have a host of cameras trained on you and commentators reporting your every move.

Just like in ANW, construction sites are restricted areas. Make sure that you’ve passed the qualification rounds of training and have all your paperwork in order — especially that waiver — before going behind the fence. An unauthorized person on the course or the site can distract workers, which can lead to falls and injuries.

No matter the similarities, the biggest difference between a construction site and the course of American Ninja Warrior is the constantly evolving nature of the site. ANW has obstacles that aren’t growing or changing. Because construction sites require the use of large machinery and heavy materials, all the elements of a site are constantly moving. Because of that, vigilance, plus protective footwear, eyewear, and ear wear, are key.

If you’ve been injured at a construction site, contact the Tampa workplace injury attorneys at Wagner, McLaughlin & Whittemore today for a free consultation. It’s possible the construction site’s warnings were more American Ninja Warrior than Appropriately Noted Warnings.

It Fits Like a (Medical) Glove

If you have suffered from medical malpractice, contact us today!

If you go back to your high school friends and ask them the names of their favorite teachers, you’ll probably get a handful of different answers. Different people respond better to different personalities and learn better from different teaching styles. As you select a doctor for any treatment, it’s important to keep in mind what you personally are looking for. No matter how many of your friends rave about a certain physician, she may not be the right fit for you.

Before you dive into compatibility tests, consider the objective background of the doctor. What is his or her background? Is she keeping up with new training programs? Are you comfortable with his level of experience? If their credentials are solid, as most are, you probably still have a long list of candidates. Maybe cross-referencing it with the doctors your insurance covers will whittle your list down a bit more, but you’ve still got a decision to make.

Many people make the mistake of going onto Yelp or similar rating sites to determine their next physician. Online rating sites can be very helpful in determining basic information about a doctor. One can, generally, get a good idea of how the doctor treats patients and wait times. At the same time, there are nuances that will not be accurately reflected in the online reviews. Due to this, it is important to consider more than just a couple online reviews before selecting which doctor you would like to treat your or a family member.

A phone call to the doctor’s office can be useful. Receptionists often echo the tone of the doctors and nurses they represent. If you’re looking for efficiency, perhaps the bubbly girl who wastes too much time on the phone doesn’t represent the right office for you. If you’re nervous, maybe you don’t want the no-nonsense woman who asks all the hard questions without an attempt to make you comfortable. If you strike a good rapport on the phone, don’t be afraid to ask about the general clientele of the doctor to see if you’d fit in. Maybe ask for a few words that describe the doctor’s bedside manner. The people in the office know those they work with the best.

If you chose the wrong doctor early on in your medical care, and you believe you’ve been the victim of medical malpractice, contact the Tampa medical malpractice attorneys at Wagner, McLaughlin & Whittemore today.

Construction Accidents
the "Fatal Four", construction accidents

If you have been injured on a construction site, call us now.

Most people take construction workers’ jobs for granted. Construction workers are responsible for all of the office buildings, homes, and roads making up our cities, but we seldom realize the great dangers they face every day on the job. If you or a loved one works in construction, you already know that this is one of the most dangerous jobs in the country. Thousands of construction workers are injured or killed on the job every year.

Some types of worksite accidents are more common than others. According to EHS Today, the worst construction accidents are called the “Fatal Four.” Officials estimate that if the Fatal Four were eliminated, 435 workers each year would be spared. The following points explain the Fatal Four, as well as ways to avoid them.

• Falls. Falls account for the majority of construction accidents. Wearing safety harnesses, constructing scaffolding properly, and covering openings to shafts or holes in roofs or multi-level flooring may prevent falls.
• Caught between objects. Getting pinned by construction vehicles or moving machinery may be prevented by taking steps to remain visible to vehicle operators, keeping your distance from moving parts and shutting down machinery when necessary.
• Electrocutions. Proper grounding or de-energizing procedures when working with electric cables or wiring may prevent fatal shocks.
• Struck by objects. Heavy objects that fall from heights and moving machinery parts are two of the ways you might be hit by objects on a construction site. Work helmets might help in some cases. Other protective measures include putting up barriers to protect people working nearby and being cautious when entering areas where heavy parts are in motion.

Federal safety standards are required on job sites to protect workers. In a great number of cases, accidents occur because of safety violations. Your employer might be liable for your injuries if safety standards were not enforced, training was not given to employees, or safety equipment was not made available. Call Wagner, McLaughlin & Whittemore to discuss your options if a construction accident has impacted your life and to learn about your rights. Our experienced Tampa OSHA lawyers can help.

Slip, Trip, or Fall
If you have been injured in a slip and fall case, contact us TODAY!

If you have been injured in a slip and fall case, contact us TODAY!

Contact the skilled Tampa personal injury lawyers today!

As one of the leading causes of injury, slips, trips, and falls are something that everyone can be vigilant about. The result of these can vary in severity from a bruise to broken bones and beyond. Because falling is so commonplace, people might believe that these events are simply accidents that “just happen” and can’t be prevented. However, the potential likelihood of a slip, trip, or fall can be reduced by a few preventative measures.

First, be aware where dangerous points might be. Slippery surfaces (glossy, polished, and wet areas especially) should receive careful attention, as should broken, crumbling, or otherwise uneven walkways. Pay particular attention, too, to transition areas that involve steps or changes in direction, as those can lead to surprises.

After you have identified potentially troublesome spots in your workplace or home, consider if enough attention is drawn to the problem. A dark corridor could benefit from more lighting. A cracked pathway should be repaired. Wet floor signs would draw attention to a slippery area near a fountain. All mats should be secured. Everyone in the building, whether it’s a workplace or residence, should be aware of cleaning supplies to eliminate spills that may become hazards.

If the area itself is safe, make sure you’re staying aware. Wear shoes with good traction to avoid slipping. Keep a healthy diet to remain awake and energetic throughout the day and avoid lethargy. Stay fit, so your body is able to react more quickly and with more agility. If you do fall, a healthy body has been proven to recover more quickly.

If you have suffered a fall due to the negligence of another, contact the experienced Tampa personal injury lawyers at Wagner, McLaughlin & Whittemore today for a free consultation.