SR Suntour Recalls Bicycles Due to Crash Hazard

SR Suntour has issued a recall on its bicycles with SR Suntour bicycle forks due to a crash hazard. As stated in the recall, “the bolt that attaches the upper part of the bicycle’s fork to the lower part of the fork can break or separate and cause the front wheel to come off the bicycle.” Nearly 70,000 of the bikes were in production in the United States and about 33,000 in Canada. The company has received 15 reports of incidents in which bolts broke or separated. Two of the reports included minor injuries.

Indiana University Health Faces Lawsuit Alleging Fraud

Indiana University Health is facing a lawsuit alleging that it committed fraud by sending high-risk, low-income women to nursing assistants, rather than to doctors, as their paperwork stated. The whistleblower lawsuit was filed by a doctor who served as director of women’s services at HealthNet as well as medical director of ob-gyn services at IU Health Methodist Hospital. The lawsuit alleges that the hospital sent the high-risk, low-income female patients to nursing assistants, when they needed to be seen by doctors. It further alleges that the hospital fraudulently claimed that the women had been treated by doctors.

Alabama Bill HB208 – to help prevent opiate overdose deaths in Alabama

There is currently a bill (HB208) to help prevent opiate overdose deaths in Alabama.   I encourage you to take a few minutes and write your representative to encourage him or her to vote YES to HB208. 

 As I am sure most of you already know, opiate overdoses, including heroin overdoses, have become a public health emergency in Alabama over the last couple of years.  In fact, the number of deaths from heroin overdose doubled in Jefferson County (Alabama’s most populous county) just last year. 

 The lives of thousands of people in the U.S. have been saved by laypersons administering a life-saving medication- it’s called Naloxone(a.k.a., Narcan)

 Here is the first problem:  Access to Naloxone is currently limited in Alabama.    HB208 would make Naloxone available to family members, friends, or other persons, including law enforcement personnel, who may be in a position to assist a person experiencing a suspected opioid overdose. 

 Here is what you need to know about Naloxone:  1) It blocks the opiate receptor sites in the brain and, once administered, it will reverse an opiate overdose; 2) Naloxone is NOT a controlled substance and has NO abuse potential; 3) Naloxone is available in a nasal spray, so any layperson should be able to administer it; 4) While Naloxone does cause sudden unpleasant opiate withdrawal symptoms for those actually suffering an opiate overdose (such as nausea and vomiting), the alternative is often death or serious brain damage; and 4) Naloxone is harmless, with NO negative effects if it is accidently administered to someone NOT experiencing an opiate overdose.

 Here’s the second problem: The vast majority of heroin use is done in the presence of others, but the majority of people who have died in Alabama from heroin overdose are found alone – abandoned out of fear of arrest.  Twenty-one other states have already addressed this problem by amending their laws to provide limited protection for “Good Samaritans” – people who summon aid and remain with the victim until help arrives. 

 HB208 would offer limited immunity for certain controlled substance offenses or underage drinking for persons who seek emergency medical assistance for another person.  If you, or someone you know, has been impacted by the disease of addiction, please consider encouraging your representative to support this bill.  Better still, even if you have never met anyone whose life has been impacted in some way by addiction, I would still ask that you take a few minutes to contact your representative and ask that he or she support this bill.  Just pay it forward.  Thanks.

 If you need help contacting your representative, just go to the website below (and you can send an email).   http://capwiz.com/state-al/home/

 

Spring is finally here!

Motorcycle Accident lawyer

Spring is here which means people are back outside.  Here’s a few tips for staying safe this spring.

 Motorcycles are a fun, but risky, spring activity.  Motorcyclists are 26 times more likely to die in a crash and 5 times more likely to be injured in a crash than a person in a passenger car.  Wearing a helmet reduces the likelihood of a crash fatality by 37%.  As we have seen in a number of motorcycle cases we have handled, many motorcycle wrecks are caused by nothing more than the other driver’s failure to see the motorcycle on the road.  So, it’s important for motorcyclists to wear appropriate safety gear and for drivers to be on the lookout for motorcycles.

 Spring also means the return of lawn mowing.  Make sure your lawn mower is in good working order before using it.  Be sure the motor is off before inspecting or repairing equipment. If debris gets stuck in the blade, use a stick or broom to remove it, not your hands. And make sure not to remove any safety devices or shields.

 Spring also means kids will be back outside.  Make sure to watch your speed in neighborhoods.  Children are often unpredictable and do not appreciate the dangers of cars.  If you are aware of children playing, you are better prepared to react to children darting in front of your car at the last moment.

 Hodges Trial Lawyers urges you to stay safe this spring and enjoy the warm temperatures!

Jeremiah appears on Law Line on WAAY 31

Law Line 1

Jeremiah Hodges made a guest appearance on Law Line on the ABC affiliate WAAY 31.  Law Line is a live, weekly, thirty minute show broadcasted on Sunday nights where viewers are encouraged to call in with their legal questions.  Jeremiah answered a number of callers’ questions relating to car wrecks, liability issues, insurance coverage and claims, and whether individuals needed an attorney to handle specific issues.  While not all questions were simple enough to be answered on air, Jeremiah was able to help numerous callers with their specific legal problems.

Hodges Trial Lawyers enjoys giving back to the community by participating in events where we can use our training and talents to help those who might not otherwise have access to lawyers.  Last year, Tim McFalls of Hodges Trial Lawyers, participated in the Law Day All Call telethon that occurred at WHNT 31.  The All Call was a day long telethon where lawyers continuously answered phone calls and gave out legal advice to callers.  The event was deemed a huge success by the Madison County Volunteers Lawyers program.  Our lawyers appreciate the opportunity to give back to the community they are proud to represent.Law Line 2

Winter Driving Tips

* The thermometers have confirmed that we are deep into winter now.  The cold weather of winter brings its own set of perils that drivers may face on the roadways.  So here’s a few helpful tips to make sure you’re prepared for any situation that may come up during these cold months.

* Never warm up your car in an enclosed area – This can lead to a deadly, odorless build-up of carbon monoxide 

* Make sure your tires are properly inflated – Colder temperatures lead to gas shrinking, which means your tire pressure will naturally drop slightly, so make sure to check your tire pressure as the temps drop

* Don’t drive on empty – Keeping your gas tank at least half full will help prevent your gas line from freezing up

* Check your battery – Your car battery is just like any other battery in that it operates poorer in cold temperatures. So make sure it still has a good charge to ensure your car will start in these temps.  Most local auto shops such as Autozone or NAPA will check your battery charge for free.

* Keep a warm blanket and flashlight in your car – This is vital in the event that you get stranded.  You cannot rely solely on your car’s heater. Keep a warm blanket (and preferably a jacket) and a flashlight in your car in case your car breaks down and you are stranded for the night.  It’s also good practice to keep your cell phone with you in the car at all times during these months so you can call for safety.

* Get any maintenance work done – Your car has to work hard to operate in these cold temperatures, so you want it running in peak condition. If you have old brakes or need a new air filter, get it done now so your car can continue to run well in these tough conditions.

Here’s also some vital tips if you MUST drive in snow/icy conditions:

* Be careful for ice on overpasses and bridges – Areas where the road is  elevated are the first places that ice will form. So be extra careful for ice when driving on bridges and similarly elevated roadways.

* Accelerate/decelerate and turn slowly – Similarly to driving in the rain, your goal here is to keep traction with the roadway. You’re far more likely to slide if you try and make quick moves with your vehicle.

* Stay off cruise control – Cruise control is your worst enemy when driving in slick conditions. You need to be in control of your accelerating in these conditions to ensure that you keep traction with the roadway.  Additionally, cruise control can actually worsen your sliding once it begins  because it will continue to attempt to accelerate your car to the programmed speed even as your tires are spinning out of control.  Cruise control should only be used in ideal temperatures.

* Don’t stop going up a hill – There’s nothing worse than trying to get moving up a hill on an icy road.  Get some momentum going on a flat roadway and attack the hill in one move.

* Don’t park on hills/Don’t rely on your emergency brake – Parking on hills is a terrible idea.  While the road may be fine when you first park your car, ice can form behind your tires and cause your car to slide down the hill when you’re not even there.  So avoid parking on hills whenever possible.

* Stay Home – Don’t make unnecessary trips. The easiest thing to do in icy and snowy conditions is stay home, get a nice warm cup of hot chocolate and get a good fire going in the fireplace.  Driving in ice and snow is very dangerous and should be avoided whenever possible.

Red Bull Settles False Advertising Suit, Offers Refunds

Energy drink maker Red Bull has settled a class action lawsuit by consumers alleging deceptive advertising. The group of consumers alleged in the lawsuit that the company lied in its advertising by claiming that the drinks contained only caffeine to provide energy, and not guarana, taurine and or other ingredients. The class action lawsuit also alleged that the company falsely advertised by claiming that the drink was a superior source of energy. As part of the settlement, Red Bull is offering a reimbursement for any consumer purchases over the last 10 years.