Warmer weather and extra daylight hours make summer the perfect time for outdoor sports like boating and personal watercraft recreation. New York State has thousands of freshwater lakes and 70,000 miles of rivers and streams. These statistics do not include access to the Great Lakes or Atlantic Ocean. You are not hard pressed to find a favorite spot in New York for boating or riding your JetSki or WaveRunner.
However, along with this great opportunity for summer fun, comes an equal need to be responsible and act safely. Every year, people in New York die from drowning and water collision accidents.
Statistics Tell the Story
BoatUS reports that people using personal watercrafts (PWCs) experience a higher collision rate than those using any other type of watercraft. PWC collisions are 30 percent of reported boating accidents. PWC collisions also result in more injuries and deaths than any other type of PWC accident. Which is the greater risk for dying in a PWC accident — drowning or blunt force trauma? Blunt force trauma the greater risk.
Why Do PWC Operators Have Higher Accident Rates?
The main reason is inexperience. Most riders involved in PWC accidents lacked instruction or safety education training prior to operating the craft. An estimated 84 percent of PWC accidents involved operators with no training, and 73 percent had ridden for less than an hour when the accident took place.
The age group that is most involved PWC accidents is the 11-20 year old age group. While a parent would never hand the car keys to their 11 year old, nor let them near a car without supervision and a learner’s permit, even when they reached 16, this was not the case with a PWC. In fact, PWC owners were not the ones most involved in accidents. Only 18 percent of PWC owners were in accidents. Owners’ siblings (29 percent) and friends (53 percent) were the most frequent riders involved in PWC accidents.
Inexperience leads to poor judgment and loss of control.
Safety Tips: What to Avoid When Boating or Riding a PWC
Here are some guidelines to avoid when boating or operating a PWC:
Avoid wake jumping and sudden turns
Do not loan your PWC to someone who lacks experience and basic boating skills — ensure they’ve taken a safety course first
Keep beginning PWC operators away from boating traffic
Do not mix alcohol or drugs with operating a PWC or boat
Avoid boating without a personal floatation device
Do not ride or go boating in bad weather (stormy, high winds, or sudden temperature drops)
If you cannot swim, do not ride a PWC or go out on a boat
When Should You Seek Legal Help for a Boating Accident?
When your injuries are serious and you believe another party was at fault, consult with a lawyer and find out about your legal rights.
In the wake of a work-related injury, you want an experienced and knowledgeable workers’ compensation lawyer to help you pursue all the benefits available to you under the law. At Pyrros & Serres LLP, we will aggressively help you seek payment of all medical expenses, as well as compensation for lost wages and any permanent disabilities.
Under the New York workers’ compensation laws, your employer is required to provide coverage for any work-related injuries you suffer. In most instances, your employer will purchase workers’ compensation insurance to cover that liability. As a practical matter, therefore, we are customarily working with insurance companies to recover the benefits to which you are entitled.
It’s important to understand how insurance companies make a profit. An insurer will charge you a premium, based on their assessment of the amount of risk you pose. The greater the risk, the higher the premium. The money collected from premiums is then used to pay any claims that are filed. The fewer claims the insurer pays, the greater their profit. It’s no surprise, then, that the workers’ compensation insurance company has a vested interest in paying as little as possible to resolve your claim.
So what does that mean for you? It means that the workers’ compensation insurer will typically scrutinize your claim, and may engage in any variety of tactics to delay, diminish or deny your claim:
You will likely be required to submit to a medical exam conducted by a doctor chosen by the insurance company. That doctor will typically be looking for any basis to deny your claim.
The insurance company may argue that your injuries do not prevent you from working, or that they were not work-related
The insurance company may try to cut its losses by offering you a cash settlement that’s worth far less than your actual losses
The takeaway? Don’t ever try to handle your workers’ compensation claim on your own. Your case may seem like a slam dunk, but your employer and the insurance company can make it a nightmare.
At Pyrros & Serres LLP, we handle all matters related to workers’ compensation and Social Security disability claims for people in the Bronx, Brooklyn, Queens and across the greater New York City metropolitan area. Because of our reputation for effective advocacy, many of our new clients come to us as referrals from clients and other lawyers.
How Extensively Has Age Discrimination Changed in the Past 50 Years?
Most employers are aware of the ADEA (Age Discrimination in Employment Act) passed in 1967. The law has been in existence for decades. What many employers may not be aware of is the fact that age discrimination continues to be an issue, and in some cases a growing issue. How likely are you to be sued for age discrimination? Are the statistics on your side or against you?
Consider the following facts reported this year by the EEOC in a statement about the state of age discrimination and older U.S. workers.
Age Discrimination Statistics Today
More than 60 percent of workers surveyed in 2017 who were age 45 and older indicated they either noticed or experienced age discrimination in the workplace. Of the individuals in this group, 90 percent stated age discrimination was common. African Americans (77 percent) reported higher rates of age discrimination, followed by Hispanics (61 percent) and Whites (59 percent). More women than men said that older workers face age discrimination.
Older workers in the technology sector indicated that 70 percent of those on IT staffs had observed or experienced age discrimination. More than 40 percent of older workers in the technology fields feared losing their jobs due to age.
In a Forbes magazine article, the author commented about the EEOC’s report entitled “State of Age Discrimination Statement 50 Years After the ADEA.” The article said that since the 2009 Supreme Court ruling on the Case Gross vs. FB Financial Services, age discrimination has been much more difficult to prove in court.
Types of reforms employers might expect to see regarding age discrimination include unexpected hiring audits along with financial penalties for incidents of malfeasance.
New York City | Queens | Brooklyn | Bronx Workers’ Compensation Lawyers
In the first blog in this two-part series, we discussed what workers’ compensation, who pays for it and how you qualify to receive benefits. But the more important question, at least for you, is “what should I do when I have been hurt on the job?”
Protecting Your Rights—What to Do When You Suffer a Workplace Injury
The first thing you should always do—no questions asked—get the medical attention you need. If you are unable to move under your own power, don’t try to do so. This will often only make things worse. This is not the time to be brave or to shake it off—for the sake of your health and to protect your legal rights, you need to accept that you’ve been hurt and defer to the medical experts to tell you the extent of your injuries. Read More
At Pyrros & Serres LLP, we handle all matters related to workers’ compensation and Social Security disability claims for people in Queens, Brooklyn, the Bronx and across the greater New York City metropolitan area. Because of our reputation for effective advocacy, many of our new clients come to us as referrals from clients and other lawyers.
Everyone has heard about defensive driving, but what does it mean to drive defensively? It certainly behooves drivers to find out because knowing and following defensive driving guidelines can be a lifesaver when on the road. With warmer weather and summer approaching, an increasing number of cars are on New York’s thoroughfares. Schools are taking field trips and soon families will be taking vacations, packing up their vehicles and driving to near and far destinations. Freeways as well as side roads will become more congested with traffic.
Tips for Defensive Driving
With safety in mind, the following are some defensive driving tips provided by drive-safely.net:
When driving, how far ahead do you look?
If you don’t look beyond the car in front of you, you’re not looking far enough ahead when you drive. Many people stay narrowly focused, but you should be able to see for miles. One way to avoid accidents is to develop situational awareness. You can notice how long a traffic light in front of you has been green or see that children down the street are playing with a ball. When you drive, practice looking as far ahead as you can.
Do you see the big picture?
When your eyes fixate on one other car or a building, you miss what else is going on. You should be aware of what is going on in the perimeter around you and notice vehicles that are at least three car lengths away. Are cars further down the road braking? Has traffic ahead of you come to a stand still? If your attention becomes glued on an accident at the side of the road, you might not notice that the car in front of you has slowed and rear end it. When driving, continually scan the whole view and be aware of everything around you.
In the event of hazards, do you have an escape plan?
If the car in front of you or the car a few vehicles ahead of you blows a tire and its driver loses control, where would you go? Had you noticed whether a shoulder existed on the side of the road or how the road was banked? If you left ample room between your car and other cars, you could see that quickly changing lanes would not be dangerous. The best way to maintain an escape plan begins with staying alert and always keeping a buffer of space between your car and other cars.