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Illinois Personal Injury Blog

Which Illinois nursing home is the right one for your parent?

When the time arrived that you and your beloved parent determined it was best if he or she moved into an Illinois nursing home, you may have felt relieved yet worried at the same time. You know you won't be able to visit your loved one as often as you'd prefer because you have a job and family obligations of your own. This is why you want to make sure the facility you choose provides consistent, high-quality care.

Sadly, nursing home abuse is a serious problem in this state and across the country. Just the thought of a licensed care provider mistreating your aging parent is likely enough to cause your stress levels to soar. There are several things to look for in a good nursing home. While keeping these issues in mind may help you choose a facility that's a good fit for your mother or father, there's no guarantee that he or she won't suffer injury or illness.

Construction accidents and injuries happen for many reasons

As a construction worker, you know that there are many dangers associated with your occupation. While you do your best to avoid trouble, accidents can and do happen on construction sites.

A thorough understanding of the most common reasons for construction site accidents can help you prevent trouble. Here are some things to protect against:

  • Slip and fall: This is typically the result of debris, equipment or an uneven surface. Protect yourself by watching every step you take, when possible.
  • Falling debris: When someone is working from above, such as on a roof, there's a greater chance of something falling to the ground and striking you. This can be anything from common worksite debris to a tool.
  • Ladder or scaffolding fall: When using a ladder or scaffolding, you're always at risk of falling from heights. There are safety tips you can follow to protect yourself, such as using safety rails on your scaffold.
  • Equipment related accidents: For example, table saws and circular saws are commonly used, but both are extremely dangerous. And remember, you don't have to make the mistake with the equipment to be injured in an accident.
  • Motor vehicle accident: It doesn't matter if you're operating a motor vehicle or simply working in close proximity to a moving vehicle, you're always at risk of an accident.

What should you do if a dog attacks?

Even though most dogs are friendly, this definitely doesn't hold true across the board. Some dogs, such as those that are raised in an inappropriate manner, are aggressive and always looking for trouble.

If you find yourself face-to-face with an aggressive dog, here are the steps you should take to protect yourself:

  • Don't make eye contact: You want to keep a close eye on the dog, but don't stare into its eyes. This can cause the dog to become more aggressive and even attack, as they feel threatened.
  • Cross your arms: This shows the dog that you are in command, which may cause it to back away.
  • Slowly back away: With your arms crossed, slowly take steps away from the dog. The key here is that you act in a slow and steady manner, as moving quickly is likely to prompt the dog to attack.
  • Find a barrier: For example, if you can get on the other side of a door or fence, it's the best thing you can do. Anything to keep the dog away from you will work. From there, you can decide what to do next.

Tips to help avoid drowsy driving

Every driver is prone to becoming drowsy while behind the wheel. If this happens to you, it's critical to get off the road as quickly as possible. From there, you can decide how to best proceed with your safety in mind.

While there is no guaranteed way to avoid drowsy driving, here are some tips that can help:

  • Get more sleep: If you continually find yourself tired while driving, do your best to sleep more at night. And if that doesn't work, consult with your doctor as you may be suffering from a sleep disorder.
  • Don't drink and drive: Alcohol can increase your level of drowsiness, while also impairing your judgment.
  • Don't take medication before driving: If a particular medication lists drowsiness as a side effect, don't take it in the hours before driving. Wait until you reach your destination before doing so.
  • Avoid driving when drowsiness is most common: For example, don't drive in the middle of the night unless you're used to doing so for your job, such as if you're employed as a truck driver or work the night shift.

Truckers often make these mistakes on the highway

You expect truck drivers to take special caution, but don't assume this will happen. These drivers are prone to many types of mistakes, all of which increase the risk of an accident.

Here are some of the most common mistakes:

  • Driving drowsy: Truckers often assume they can "push it just a little bit longer." Unfortunately, when they push it too far, they risk falling asleep at the wheel.
  • Distracted driving: There is no shortage of distractions in the cockpit of a commercial truck. From food and drinks to smartphones and GPS systems, there's always something to take the trucker's attention away from the road.
  • Speeding: You don't typically have to look far to spot a trucker who is driving faster than the speed limit on the highway. Time is money for trucking professionals, so they often take risks with how fast they drive.
  • Illegal passing: This often goes along with speeding, as truckers will pass slower moving vehicles in the right lane. Doing this puts everyone in close proximity at risk of an accident.

Does your employer prioritize employee safety or the bottom line?

Do you risk your life on a construction site each day? The Occupational Safety and Health Administration says thousands of preventable construction site accidents occur on construction sites nationwide each year, including Illinois. Unfortunately, employers who focus more on profits than on worker safety prefer to allow, and even encourage, construction workers to take shortcuts to meet deadlines. Disregarding safety standards to save money is also prevalent in the construction industry.

Did you know that you can refuse to work in conditions that lack the necessary safety precautions? For this reason, it might be a good idea for you to gain knowledge about the OSHA prescribed safety standards. It will allow you to take charge of your safety while your boss' eye is on the bottom line. Even just looking out for the four most frequently cited OSHA violations might keep you out of the hospital.

Avoid these insurance claim mistakes to ease your stress

After a motor vehicle accident, it won't be long before you're digging up the contact information for your insurance company. While you hope the claims process goes as planned, you know that there are many challenges standing in your way.

These are the types of insurance claim mistakes that often come into play after a car crash:

  • Neglecting to review your policy: This is mistake No. 1, as a lack of knowledge can make it difficult to obtain all the benefits due to you. Review the terms and conditions of your policy before you file a claim.
  • Saying too much: Yes, you need to contact your agent or provider to file a claim. However, that doesn't mean you should provide an excessive amount of information or answer questions you don't understand. Your insurance company wants you to say something they can use against you.
  • Accepting payment: Don't be surprised if your insurance company sends you a check marked as final payment at some point. This may happen when you least expect it, hoping to catch you off guard. If it does, put the check aside and contact your agent to let them know you won't be cashing it.

Taking the guesswork out of nursing home abuse

Getting older is a part of life. What is not expected with aging individuals, however, is the sudden loss of the ability to care for themselves. Whether it is due to an illness or simply old age, this situation can cause family members to consider various options to care for an elderly loved one. While it might be more ideal for one to care for an aging loved one, this is not always a possibility. Thus, many consider a nursing home to be their best option.

While these facilities can offer safe and adequate care and living arrangements, some could be the cause of great harm due to abuse or neglect. Even when families take the time to fully assess the available nursing homes, with the chosen location well vetted, nursing home abuse could occur undetected for some time. This is why it is important to understand the signs of nursing home abuse and neglect.

Nursing home managers accused of hiding $700,000 theft

Nursing homes are supposed to provide a safe place for people who are too old to care for themselves. Unfortunately, this relationship often places the managers and owners of the home in a position of virtually uncontrolled power over the residents. A prime example of how this power imbalance can affect nursing home residents came to light last week when the Cook County Public Guardian's office filed a complaint seeking damages from the four entities that own a chain of nursing homes known as Symphony Residences.

The complaint alleges that when the owners and managers of the nursing home in question discovered that employees of the home stole $700,000 from a 98 year old resident who suffered from Alzheimer's disease, they attempted to hide the theft instead of reporting it to authorities. The complaint alleges that five nursing home employees routinely stole money from the victim's retirement and savings accounts. They allegedly used a combination of forged checks, illegal ATM withdrawals and other methods to virtually clean out the victim's accounts. The supervisors of these employees were not accused of any direct theft; instead, they have been charged with failing to report the crimes to the proper authorities.

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