Understand Colorado Boating Laws For Smooth Sailing This Labor Day!

Colorado boating laws and water safety

It’s summertime in Colorado, a great time of the year to explore and enjoy the beauty and nature of our state For some of you that probably means heading out to the lakes, reservoirs, and rivers throughout the Colorado. But, before you go out for a refreshing dip and fun, let’s talk a little bit about how to keep your family safe out on the water, as well as, state boating laws and important safety measures.

Water Contamination in Your Own Backyard?

contaminated drinking water found in community

By now you have probably heard about the unfortunate circumstances affecting many of the residents in the Security, Widefield, and Fountain areas—that is the contaminated water situation. Back in May of this year the EPA announced that it had lowered the health advisory levels for certain perfluorinated compounds (PFCs), specifically PFOA and PFOS, to 70 parts per trillion (ppt). Previously the level had been set at 400 ppt. The advisory came due to the EPA’s concern regarding low birth weight in fetuses exposed to PFCs.

Super Cool Legal Songs

top songs with legal themes

Music, it’s all around us. It expresses our feelings, and our highs and lows. It sometimes even makes a statement or expression about the law. So, what better to honor the power of music by putting together a list of our favorite legal-themed songs? It’s a pretty great list (though possibly a little silly) ranging from rock, to pop, to folk. Here are seven of our top legal-themed song picks:

Elder Abuse: It’s More than Just Physical Abuse or Caregiver Neglect

Signs of elder abuse

By 2015, the elderly population of the world, that is, those over the age of 65, accounted for 8.5 percent of the total population. In the next 10 years we should witness an increase of about 236 million people ages 65 or older across the globe. Then, from 2025 to 2050, the older population is projected to almost double to 1.6 billion globally. With our elderly population increasing, we need to become more aware that elder abuse will unfortunately also be on the rise. It’s sad to think about that, but an increase in population means an increase in nursing home residents, and that means an increased chance of abuse. Facilities may also become understaffed and unable to properly care for residents.

And the Safest Driving State in the Country is…Colorado!

Colorado listed as one of the safest states for driving

According to Allstate’s annual America’s Best Drivers Report ®, Colorado has made the top 10 list more than any other state. The safest city in Colorado this year according to the report is Fort Collins coming in at 17, with Colorado Springs coming in at 21 and Lakewood at 33. On top of that, Thorton, CO recently joined the list as the 41st safest driving city in the country. Way to go Coloradans, for showing others how safe we can be driving. Some of the worst cities in America were Washington D.C., Baltimore, and Boston, which was number 200.

What Kinds of Injuries Should be Preventable in a Nursing Home?

preventable nursing home injuries

You may have a loved one who is in the care of a nursing home. A nursing home is there to provide the care and attention your family member needs; however, sometimes unfortunate events can happen to your loved one leaving them seriously injured. If nursing home abuse or neglect occurs, this can be devastating not only for your loved one, but your family as well.

U.S. Has the Highest Rate of Auto Related Fatalities Among High Income Countries

Rates of crash fatalities

A recent news release from the National Safety Council, shows that the United States has the highest rate of motor vehicle deaths among 19 high-income countries, according to the latest report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. According to the CDC, more than 32,000 people are killed and 2 million are injured each year from motor vehicle crashes. Accordingly, it works out that about 90 people die each day in the U.S. from auto crashes. This results in us having the highest death rate in comparison to other countries. Those countries include Australia, Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Ireland, Israel, Japan, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, and the U.K.

CDOT Runs New Campaign—Killer Habit

The killer habit of distracted driving

At the end of July, CDOT announced that it is launching a new campaign as part of Drop the Distraction to combat the deadly activity of distracted driving. According to CDOT, last year, Colorado had 15,574 crashes and 68 traffic fatalities involving distracted drivers. This new campaign highlights what distracted driving really is—a Killer Habit.

Physics 101: Semi-Truck Braking

braking needs of semi trucks

We see semi-trucks quite often, especially on Colorado highways and interstates. Such vehicles are an important part of our economy, transporting millions of products every day. There is no question that we need to share the road with these vehicles, but large tractor-trucks are troubling when it comes to wrecks. Given the size and weight… Read more »

Statutory Employer, Who’s That?

definition of a statutory employer

Sometimes terms are thrown at you, and when you don’t understand them you can become confused and frustrated. If you have been injured on-the-job, terms and dates have probably come up that you just don’t understand, and now you are overwhelmed. One of those terms you may have heard is “statutory employer.”

Is Your Car’s Backup Camera Really Helpful?

safety issues of backup cameras

Many newer models of cars are now equipped with a backup camera. Along with the camera, many car crashes can be preventable if drivers take the proper precautions and are aware of their surroundings when backing up. According to KidsandCars.org, every year thousands of children are killed or seriously injured because a driver backing up did not see them. While kids may be the most common victims of these incidents, anyone can be injured and hurt due to someone’s negligence or recklessness while backing up.

How a Lawyer Can Help You Heal After an Accident

how a lawyer can help healing after an accident

A car wreck can be a very traumatic experience that leaves you in severe physical pain and potentially financial hardship. Our Team at McDivitt Law Firm fights for the rights of car crash victims every day, but fighting for their rights doesn’t just mean getting them the compensation they deserve. After you have been in a car accident it is extremely important that you focus on your healing, both physically and emotionally. However, you’ve probably never thought about how an attorney can help you with that process.

Vehicles with the Best and Worst Visibility

best and worst vehicle visibility

Consumer Reports recently released which cars have the best and worst visibility according to road tests. Unrestricted visibility is extremely important while driving. An unobstructed view is needed to avoid dangerous road hazards and to be aware of others on the road. However, many vehicles out on the road today have poorer visibility than you may think. This is due to the fact that people are looking for style over functionality, and sometimes safety.

Preventing Rollover Accidents

p;reventing rollover accidents

Any auto accident can be a traumatic event for those involved, but a rollover crash can be one of the more severe things that can happen to you on the road. While vehicle rollovers occur in only approximately 3 percent of all serious crashes, 33 percent of passenger deaths occur because of rollovers. Additionally, more than 10,000 people die a year in rollover crashes, according to the National Highway and Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).

Car Seat Design Flaw Kills, and Yet Nothing has Changed

dangers created by design flaw in car seat

CBS Denver recently did a piece on a flaw in the design of front car seats in many cars, and Colorado lawmakers who want to help change this. In the piece you discover how a 16 month old little girl was killed during a car accident when her family’s Honda Odyssey minivan was struck from behind. The seat in front of her broke and collapsed on top of her. She died from her injuries.

Did you Just Get Injured Catching Pokémon?

It’s official, everyone seems to have gone crazy about the new mobile app Pokémon Go, based off the original game and creatures from the Japanese show that was big in the 1990s. The app has made a resurgence with not only children of the 90s but with all age groups, and it’s led to some weird and sometimes scary incidents. For example, one young lady in Wyoming was walking along a river trying to capture a Pokémon when she came across a dead body. In another situation, one user was walking along, paying attention to his phone and fell down a ditch fracturing his foot.

Self-Driving Cars, are there Safety Benefits?

safety of self-driving cars

Earlier this year, I spoke to you about how new technology is creating self-driving cars and whether this technology could potentially decrease auto accidents. Well, by now you have probably heard about the tragedy involving a Tesla driver. The driver was killed while the Tesla Model S was in autopilot mode. This is the first reported death involving a self-driving car. It occurred when a tractor trailer made a left hand turn in front of the Tesla, which failed to apply the brakes. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration continues to investigate the deadly crash.

Our Top 10 Picks for Legal Movies

top 10 picks for legal movies

Are you a movie buff? Do you enjoy sitting down on your couch with a tub of popcorn and a good movie? Have you thought about watching some really great legally themed movies? As an attorney, I might not always be in the mood for a legal drama, but there happen to be quite a few great movies out there, anything from the triumph of the little man, freedom from oppression, to prove that the American judicial system can bring justice to those who deserve it. Here are some of our Team Members’ favorite legal-themed movies.

Video Blog McDivitt News – June 2016

McDivitt Video News June 2016

In McDivitt News this month: Spring and summer have been a busy time at McDivitt Law Firm. We participated in several events at Centennial Elementary to wrap up the school year, held our annual Distracted Driving PSA contest, hosted Bring Your Kids to Work Day, and we won some awards! Check out the full recap in this month’s edition of McDivitt News.

On-the-Job Injuries to be made Public

on the job injury reporting requirements by OSHA

I recently read that the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has just enacted a new rule, one that will require employers in “high-hazard” industries to report directly to OSHA when on-the-job injuries or illnesses occur. OSHA will then post this information on their agency website. The rule will take effect at the beginning of next year, Jan. 1, 2017. OSHA hopes that “public disclosure will encourage employers to improve workplace safety and provide valuable information to workers, job seekers, customer, researchers and the general public.” Employer reporting requirements vary slightly depending on the number of employees, but the rule will apply to all employers, except for those with less than twenty employees.

Most Dangerous Times to Drive

As expected, being on the road during certain times of the day increases your chances of being in a car crash. This correlates to the times of the day where there are usually more cars on the road. Additionally, holidays often increase the number of drivers on the road traveling, as well as, the number of alcohol impaired drivers if it’s a holiday associated with drinking. Poor weather always contributes to car crashes too. That makes the summertime your safest time to drive as the weather is usually better. At least you don’t have to deal with icy or snow-packed roads then. However, let’s get a little more specific than these generalizations.

Your Heartburn Medication May Cause You Kidney Problems

heartburn medication causes danger to kidneys

Known to get heartburn or suffer from gastrointestinal reflux disease? You’ve probably turned to medications like Nexium or Prilosec. These brand names are common heartburn medications and many heartburn drugs are also available over the counter. They may even be sitting in your medicine cabinet at home right now. However, recent studies indicate the use of these medications, known as proton pump inhibitors (PPIs), may increase the risk for kidney disease.

McDivitt In The News – June 2016

McDivitt In the News Donovan Duran suit

In light of recently obtained police body cam footage, Donovan Duran was featured in a news story by KRDO about Mr. Duran’s injuries and lawsuit against a La Junta police officer. The suit claims excessive force was used by La Junta police officers during an arrest in which no charges were filed.

10 Tire Safety Tips Everyone Should Know

tire safety tips

One of the most integral and often overlooked parts of a car is the tires. They can also be one of the more dangerous aspects of a car if they are not properly maintained. Therefore, we all need to make sure that our tires are in the proper condition to ensure that we are safe on the road and also not a danger to other drivers. We’ve put together a top 10 list of tire safety tips that every driver and car owner should know.

For Teens, It’s the Deadliest Time of the Year

dangerous times for teen drivers

The AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety has released recent research that reveals the troubling behaviors behind distracted driving among teen drivers. You may not know this, but the time period between Memorial Day and Labor Day, which we are currently in, is known as the “100 Deadliest Days” for teens. As more teenagers are out on the road during the summer months, the number of fatal crashes involving teen drivers increases to an average of 10 deaths every day! That is 16 percent higher than the rest of the year. Given this information, it is imperative to highlight what type of distracted driving is most dangerous, in order to prevent it.

Whiplash: What No One Tells You About

facts about whiplash

Your first thought when you hear the word whiplash, is probably car accident. In fact, whiplash is a common neck injury that occurs after a rear-end auto accident. Whiplash can also be referred to as a neck sprain or neck strain, and is a type of neck injury that occurs due to forceful and rapid movement of the neck forward and backward.

Colorado Enacts Mandatory Reporting Laws for Elder Abuse

colorado-elder-abuse-laws

Colorado recently put into place new laws to help protect our state’s aging population. The tragedy of elder abuse is on the rise in the United States as the American population continues to age. Baby Boomers are turning 65 at a rate of one every ten seconds. In order to protect this population, Colorado, as of July 2014, put into place mandatory reporting laws. These laws ensure that those in the elder community are safe and cared for by requiring certain identified individuals to report any observations or reasonable suspicions of abuse of an at-risk elder to the proper authorities within 24 hours. Elder abuse can include physical abuse, sexual abuse, caretaker neglect, and exploitation of a person 70 years of age or older.

What You Need to Know About the Federal Nursing Home Act

Understand the Federal Nursing Home Act

In 1987, Congress passed the Federal Nursing Home Reform Act (FNHRA), which was intended to ensure that residents of nursing homes received quality care and attention. To improve quality care in nursing homes, the FNHRA provides certain services that must be available to each resident, as well as, establishing a Residents’ Bill of Rights. The Act covers those nursing homes that receive federal funding, such as through Medicaid or Medicare; however, additional state laws govern nursing homes as well.

5 Bad Driving Habits We Should All Stop Doing

avoid these 5 bad driving habits

Ok, we have all probably done one or more of these at some point in our lives, but the 5 bad driving habits below can not only lead to a ticket in some instances, but more dangerously, they can lead to an auto accident. Bad habits can be hard to break, but here are 5 bad driving habits we should all stop doing so that we can keep the road safe:

What Does “Resident Relative” Mean in an Auto Insurance Policy?

Divorce impacts resident relative in auto insurance claim

A recent case from the Colorado Court of Appeals, Geico v. Collins, analyzes the issues that may present themselves after an auto or motorcycle accident when spouses are undergoing a divorce. In this case, Mr. Collins was injured in a motorcycle accident with an underinsured motorist. He then sought underinsured motorist coverage under an insurance policy issued by Geico to his wife, who was in the process of divorcing him, at the time of the accident. The insurance company denied the coverage because Mr. Collins was not a “resident relative” under the policy since he did not reside in the same home as his wife at the time. The court had to look at whether “spouses may be considered residents of the same household for purposes of insurance coverage when, although they remain married, they live apart.” The court concluded on that issue, that yes they could, but it was dependent on the circumstances of the case.

Grand Jury Declines to Indict La Junta Police Officers after MMA Fighter Paralyzed

grand jury declines to indict la junta police

The case of Donovan Duran is a tragic one. Donovan, our client, was an aspiring MMA fighter, who one night in December of 2015, after being taken into custody by the La Junta police, was paralyzed while in police custody. His injuries occurred when an officer pulled him out of a police vehicle onto his head. He was rushed to a medical center, where he learned his spinal cord had been crushed. He is now paralyzed. This information was released in a grand jury report that came out this May.

Cinemark Theater Found Not Liable For Theater Shooting

theater found not liable for theater shooting

You may have heard that victims and families of victims of the Aurora movie theater shooting filed a lawsuit against Cinemark for the 2012 shooting. In May of 2016 the case went to trial and the six person jury came back with a decision—the theater was not liable. You may be asking questions like “How could the theater be responsible in the first place? They didn’t pull the trigger.” Or maybe you’re asking yourself “Why wouldn’t they be liable? Couldn’t they have done more to prevent such a tragic incident from happening?”

Chronic Pain: Neuroscientists to the Rescue?

manage chronic pain

I came across an article recently from the ABA Journal discussing how personal injury lawyers are turning to neuroscience to back claims of chronic pain in their clients. Chronic pain is often defined as any pain lasting more than 12 weeks; however, there is no test that can measure or pinpoint the location of pain with any precision. Common chronic pain areas include headaches, low back pain, cancer pain, arthritis pain, neurogenic pain, and psychogenic (psychological) pain.

Quick Guide: The Difference between Wrongful Death and Homicide

differences in wrongful death and homicide

If you happened to catch the FX series, The People v. O.J Simpson: American Crime Story, you were probably reminded, or even learned, that O.J. Simpson was not convicted of murder, but later on was held legally responsible for the deaths of Nicole Brown Simpson and Ronald Goldman. How did that work? Well, there is a difference between criminal cases involving homicide and civil cases concerning wrongful deaths. Therefore, someone can be found not guilty of murder, but responsible for someone’s death in a civil suit. Let’s look a little more in depth at these differences.

10 Ways to Avoid an Auto Accident

tips to avoid auto accidents

The Team here at McDivitt Law Firm knows how traumatic and life-changing an auto accident can be. Unfortunately, car accidents are very common, but there are ways to decrease your chances of getting into one. The best way to avoid getting in a car crash is to practice safe driving habits. So, we’ve come up with a list of 10 tips to prevent an auto accident, and here they are:

It’s Finally Bicycle Weather, Enjoy but Be Safe

Season for Cyclists on the Road

Summer will be here in no time at all, and that means it’s already bicycle weather. With so many days of sunshine in Colorado, you know people are getting on their bikes to enjoy this weather and see what our great state has to offer. However, as much as many of us enjoying hitting the trails or the road, we probably don’t always think of the liability we may face in the case of a bike accident. As such, I recently spoke with someone over at KRDO about this very issue. You can view the interview below.

Snapchat Speed Filter Sparks Dangerous Driving

Using Snapchat while driving

If you use Snapchat you may be familiar with one of its more popular filters that indicates your speed at the time you snap a photo. And for those of you who don’t use the app, once you take a picture you can add a filter to it, one which will post the m.p.h. you were moving at the time of the shot. You have to be moving for it to work, so one can imagine that this filter is pretty popular in indicating how fast a person is going at the time of the snap. It’s the perfect storm for a car crash, and that is exactly what some say happened in an auto crash near Atlanta, Georgia.

Self-Driving Cars, are they an Answer to Auto Accidents?

safety factors of self driving cars

By now you’ve probably heard about the new technology concerning self-driving cars, and if you haven’t, that’s ok too, because here’s a little bit of information. Self-driving cars may sound like a futuristic fantasy, but they actually exist right now. In fact, Google currently operates these vehicles in California, Texas, and Washington. A self-driving car uses a computer to operate the car; no human interaction needed other than to program your drive.