Ammonia Leak Sends Eight to the Hospital

Accidents happen at work often. Millions of employees are injured on the job every year, some of those being fatal. A workplace injury can cause not only medical problems, but financial problems, as well.

An ammonia leak at a recreation center’s ice rink has sent eight people to the hospital. The recreation center was evacuated around 11 am on September 15 when a line to an ammonia tank broke while contractors worked in the area. The leak was confined to one room, but caused three firefighters, one city employee and four contractors who were working on the building to be sent to St. Mary’s Hospital and Mercy Medical Center to be treated. In response to the leak, hazmat officials came in to clean up the problem and the ice rink was closed for 48 hours.

Exposure to harmful or toxic substances is one of the most common workplace injuries reported each year. Other common injuries include:

  • Transportation accidents
  • Falls, either on level surfaces or from heights
  • Fires or explosions
  • Repetitive motion injuries or carpal tunnel

Even if you have already filed a workman’s compensation claim, an experienced attorney on your side can be beneficial. Let them investigate your claim and figure out if you’re entitled to compensation.

If you or someone you know has been involved in a work related accident, call your St. Louis workers’ compensation attorneys and let us help you today.

Posted in Auto Blogs, News, Slip and Fall Accidents, St. Louis Personal Injury Attorney, St. Louis Personal Injury Lawyer, Workers Compensation | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Bicyclist Struck by Police Car

Bicyclists are expected to follow rules of the road just as vehicles are. However, a bicyclist has little option but to ride on the roadway when there is no bike lane and they don’t have the same protective metal frame a vehicle has. Therefore, when one is struck by a vehicle, it can leave a lasting impact.

At 9 pm on September 13, Justin Branson was riding his bicycle on Olive Blvd. near Woodson Rd. A police car traveling the same way, who Justin said seemed to come out of nowhere, struck him. It knocked him off his bike, threw him over the hood and then off the side of the car. Justin has a fracture in his back, a bruised lung and a damaged bike. A spokesperson for St. Louis County police confirmed the accident but cannot yet comment on whether the officer has broken the law or not.

As an avid cyclist, Justin knows how important it is to follow the rules of the road. He had flashing red lights on his bike and on his backpack to be seen better. However, the area where he was hit does not have bike lanes. This is an area that many feel need to addressed.

This can happen to anyone. If you or someone you know has been a bicyclist struck by a vehicle, we want to help! Call your St. Louis accident attorneys today.

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Cucumbers Recalled Because of Salmonella

In our society today, there is a growing trend toward healthy eating. Vegetables have become the norm in many households, with keywords like fresh, organic and natural. When you buy your fresh vegetables, you may not even think about them making you sick. This is what has happened with fresh cucumbers affecting over four hundred people in Missouri and Illinois.

CBS St. Louis reported that cucumbers known slicer or American cucumbers, grown in Baja, Mexico, are being recalled because that have been contaminated with salmonella. These cucumbers were sold in grocery stores and served in restaurants. Eight cases in Missouri and six in Illinois have been found to be affected by the disease. The cucumbers are dark green and sold in cartons that are black, green, red or brown.

Dr. Laura Gieraltowski of the CDC hopes the recall, issued 11 days ago, has worked, though, some people may still have them in their refrigerators. She said the shelf life of the cucumber is ending at this point, so people are probably throwing them out, anyway. She says that if you don’t know where your cucumbers come from, stick to the phrase, “When in doubt, throw it out,”

More than a dozen residents in Missouri and Illinois have been affected by the disease.

If you or someone you know has been affected by a recalled product, let your St. Louis personal injury lawyer help you today!

Posted in News, Personal Injury, Product Liability, Shopping Center Accidents, St. Louis Personal Injury Attorney, St. Louis Personal Injury Lawyer | Tagged , | Leave a comment

VA Drops the Ball Again – This Time on Pending Healthcare Requests

Press for the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) isn’t getting any better. A whistleblower leak claiming more than 200,000 of nearly 900,000 veterans “waiting” to hear back on healthcare applications were likely be deceased, prompting an official inquiry. The report that followed, revealed sobering information. St. Louis Personal Injury Attorneys Hoffman & Gelfman want to fill you in on this sad state of affairs…

Out of time
In addition to the one-third of pending applicants likely deceased, the report reveals more than half of pending applications, going back nearly two decades, do not have applications dates. These serious “data limitations” have prevented investigations from uncovering how many now-deceased veterans applied for benefits and when.

Insult to injury
VA workers also reportedly incorrectly marked thousands of unprocessed health-care applications as completed, and may have deleted 10,000 or more electronic “transactions” over the past five years.

Passing the buck
VA has stated it has no way to purge the list of dead applicants, and many of those listed in the report are likely to have used another type of insurance before they died.

No kidding
Deficiencies in VA information security prevented a full investigation, including ruling out data manipulation. The report pinpointed both a significant failure by Health Eligibility Center leaders and deficient oversight by the Washington central office.

Healthcare system working against you? St. Louis Personal Injury Attorneys Hoffman & Gelfman can help. Contact us today.

Posted in Injuries at Work, News, Personal Injury, Personal Injury Attorney, St. Louis Personal Injury Attorney, St. Louis Personal Injury Lawyer, Wrongful Death | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Legionnaires Death Toll Rises in Western Illinois

Two new fatalities have been reported, bringing the death toll to 10 in the recent outbreak of Legionnaire’s disease at Western Illinois’ Quincy Veterans Home. St. Louis Personal Injury Attorneys Hoffman & Gelfman want to fill you on the latest in this deadly outbreak.

Illinois Department of Veterans Affairs and CDC are still investigating the as-yet undetermined source. The 129-year-old facility has been posing complex challenges to the investigation, spanning 200 acres with 400 residents housed in eight of its 48 buildings.

So far all victims were residents. The disease has a two-week incubation period, affecting the those with underlying medical conditions and the elderly more frequently, thus more fatalities could arise.

The disease is not rare. Outdoors, legionella bacteria survive in soil and water, rarely causing infections. Indoors, however, legionella multiplies in warm water systems that have not been properly maintained, transmitting infection via the air. Legionnaire’s cannot be spread from person to person. Symptoms include fever, chills, and cough. Though most recover, it results in death in 5-30% of victims.

As a precaution, Quincy Veterans Home residents have been relegated to bottled water and sponge baths. Decorative and drinking fountains, hot water tanks, water and A/C systems, and other sources of aerosolized water are being cleaned and disinfected.

Has improper sanitation adversely affected you or your family? St. Louis Personal Injury Attorneys Hoffman & Gelfman can help. Contact us for your free consultation today.

Posted in News, St. Louis Personal Injury Attorney, St. Louis Personal Injury Lawyer, Wrongful Death | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Know and Avoid these Common Medical Malpractice Issues

You’re no doubt familiar with the old saying, “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure,” and that couldn’t be more true than with regard to medical malpractice. To keep you safe, the St. Louis Malpractice Attorney professionals at Hoffman & Gelfman want to keep you in the know.

Circumvent these common medical malpractice issues with awareness:

Surgical errors

The single most common type of claim filed, surgical errors make the difference between a full recovery and a life mired with medical difficulty. Common errors include:

  • Wrong site surgery
  • Wrong patient surgery
  • Unsanitary instruments
  • Damage to organs and tissue
  • Nerve damage

Prescription drug errors

Improper and incorrect prescriptions result in more than anticipated side effects, injuring 1.3 million patients annually. Constantly question doctors and pharmacists to avoid common prescription errors:

  • Improper dosage
  • Incorrect medication or confusing medicines
  • Drug interactions
  • Wrong route of administration (oral versus sublingual or suppository)


Common when cancer is missed or serious chronic conditions are misdiagnosed as less serious, standard of care plays an important role in misdiagnosis cases. When selecting a doctor, opt for one with appropriate training to your perceived needs.

Failure to treat

Overworked, understaffed healthcare facilities that rush patients through can easily result in the worsening of conditions. All individuals are deserving of thorough medical attention.

If you’ve suffered medical malpractice, you need a St. Louis Malpractice Attorney who’s on your side. Contact Hoffman & Gelfman today.

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When An Emergency Room Mistake Becomes Malpractice

Almost everyone has to go to the emergency room at least once in their life. Having to go can cause fear and anxiety in the patient. The doctors, nurses, techs and other medical staff are held to a standard in the medical community to be able to provide you with the best possible care. You trust the ER staff to do what they’re supposed to do and help keep the fear and anxiety at a minimum. When they don’t, the results can have a lasting effect.

When emergency medical professionals don’t follow the standards of care when dealing with medical emergencies, it constitutes medical malpractice. Many things can be considered malpractice. The typical ones are:

  • Failure to diagnose a medical condition- If a condition is completely not diagnosed
  • Failure to treat a condition properly- If a condition is treated with the wrong treatment or medication
  • Delayed diagnosis of medical condition- If the medical professional waits to diagnose for reasons that aren’t medically necessary
  • Delayed treatment of medical condition- If the medical professional delays treatment
  • Failure to obtain informed consent- Patient or responsible party must give consent for all medical procedures and treatments
  • Inaccurately interpreting a diagnostic test (e.g. x-ray, CT scan, MRI)

Some of these mistakes can cause very serious injury and even death. If you or someone you know has been the victim of medical malpractice, let your St. Louis malpractice attorneys help today!

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Girl Recovering From Being Hit By Bus in June

Some accidents cause injuries that take months or years to recover from. Injuries that are so extensive, doctors have no idea when the victim will get back to the activities they love. It is easy to lose hope in this kind of situation.

The family of 7-year old Paige Breckle, however, is optimistic.  On June 25, Paige was hit by her own school bus after it dropped off at her house in Cedar Hill. Paige’s brother, Justin, said when she got off the bus, the yellow safety arm that makes children walk out away from the bus did not extend.When Paige was crossing, her purse fell, and when she went back to get it, the bus driver did not see her. He drove off, running over her. Justin pulled her in the house, called 911 and waited for help. Paige broke her pelvis, incurred several internal injuries and wears a boot on one leg. She endured a nine hour surgery and was expected to walk for months.

Today, she is learning how to walk again. Doctors say she is getting stronger by the day. And while her family has been by her side, Paige just wants to play and get back on the monkey bars. So, they say, that is their goal.

If you or someone you know has been the victim of an accident, let your St Louis accident attorneys help you today.

Posted in Car Accidents, News, Pedestrian accicents, Personal Injury, Personal Injury Attorney, St. Louis Personal Injury Attorney, St. Louis Personal Injury Lawyer, Truck Accidents | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Nursing Home Cams May Become More Common

In today’s society, there is more demand to work longer, harder hours. Often, places are understaffed and overworked. This can be true of nursing homes. As a result, abuse and neglect of the elderly can increase, making the stay in the nursing home unpleasant and frightening.

Things can change and residents of nursing homes can take back their rights. This can happen by allowing cameras to be installed in their rooms. CBS St. Louis reports that the governor of Illinois signed this into law after lawmakers saw the need. Last year, more than 150 cases of abuse and neglect were reported in Illinois nursing homes. The bill’s main sponsor, Republican Greg Harris, hopes that people knowing they’re being recorded will deter them from the abuse.

The bill states that roommates would have to consent to the recording, as well. If one roommate does not give consent, the nursing home will have to make other arrangements to move the resident who wants camera surveillance. The nursing homes will have to put signs up to alert visitors and staff of the surveillance both at the main entrance of the facility and at the door to the room.

Is this where we are headed here in St. Louis? Time will tell.

If you or someone you know has been a victim of nursing home abuse or neglect, let your St. Louis nursing home abuse and neglect attorneys help.

Posted in News, Nursing Home Abuse, Nursing Home Neglect, Personal Injury, Personal Injury Attorney, St. Louis Personal Injury Lawyer | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Jefferson County Crash Injures Two, Kills One

There are automobile accidents every day. When we get in a car, we take the chance that something can happen where someone is driving recklessly or just simply not following the rules of the road, possibly causing an accident to occur. This results in numerous injuries and deaths as a result of these accidents.

According to an article in St. Louis Today, an accident Sunday left two people injured and one man dead. The accident was on Highway 61, north of Brad Ford Dr. in Herculaneum, Jefferson County. Police say that 61 year old Danny Coaley was driving his 1993 Chevy S-10 when he crossed the center line. He collided with an oncoming 2010 Ford F150 head-on, driven by 29 year old Trevor Buerck. Trevor and his 3- year old son, Nolan were taken to St. Anthony’s Medical Center, both with minor injuries. Coaley, who was not wearing a seat belt, was killed as a result of the crash.

Many times, accidents cause problems beyond injuries. Some of the things you might face following an accident might be:

  • Medical bills after the initial injuries
  • Inability to work, short or long term, depending on severity of injuries
  • Cost of car repair
  • Pain and suffering due to being in an accident

If you’ve been in an auto accident, you need an experienced auto attorney on your side. Let your St. Louis auto attorneys help you today!

Posted in Car Accidents, News, Personal Injury, Roadway Accidents, St. Louis Personal Injury Lawyer, Wrongful Death | Tagged , , | Leave a comment