Can I Sue an 18-Wheeler Driver for Hitting Me?

Your Right to Compensation After an 18-Wheeler Accident

Over the course of the last few years, the number of 18-wheelers on Houston roadways has increased exponentially. Unfortunately, this puts everyday drivers at a higher risk for accidents involving serious injuries or death. Collisions involving 18-wheelers often result in severe harm to occupants of other vehicles.

If you are involved in an 18-wheeler accident, you might be entitled to compensation from one or more parties. At Bailey Cowan Heckaman, we have secured millions of dollars in verdicts and settlements on behalf of our clients. We have decades of experience and will fight for you and your family. 

Contact our office today at (888) 367-7160 to request a free consultation. There are no fees unless we win. Call now to get started.

18-Wheeler Accidents and Injuries

The number one thing you should do after an 18-wheeler accident is to seek medical treatment.  Even if you are unsure whether you are severely injured, you should still be treated by a doctor or physician. Depending on the circumstances of the case, you might be entitled to compensation from an at-fault driver or another liable party.

Given their size and weight, crashes involving 18-wheelers rarely result in only property damage or minor injuries. 18-wheeler accidents can be complex, involving multiple liable parties and more than one insurance policy. To protect your right to recovery, it is highly recommended that you consult with an 18-wheeler accident attorney early in the process. 

Obtaining Compensation for Your Injuries

When your injuries are caused by another person’s negligence or recklessness, you deserve compensation. If it can be shown that somebody else caused the accident or was at least partially at fault, you might be able to pursue a claim for damages. 

Types of 18-wheeler accidents where another party may be at fault:

If you are hit by an 18-wheeler, it is generally in your best interest to speak to an attorney. An attorney can help determine if you have a valid claim and should sue a responsible party.

Why You Need an Attorney

18-wheeler accidents may not be as straightforward as they initially seem. Many trucking companies (carriers) are backed by the largest insurers in the country. They have ample resources at their disposal to fight injury claims. An attorney can help ensure that you receive the compensation that you deserve from any and all liable parties.

Potentially liable parties in an 18-wheeler accident:

One of the complexities involved in 18-wheeler accidents is that more than one party may be legally responsible for your injuries. Hiring an attorney can help you prove liability so that you get the financial recovery you need to cover all of your accident-related losses.

Injured in an 18-Wheeler Accident? Contact Our Office Today.

If you were injured in an 18-wheeler accident in Texas, contact our office at (888) 367-7160 to schedule a free consultation. All case evaluations are confidential and without obligation to retain our services. Get justice now; call today to get started.

BCH Advocates for Texan Man Injured in Vaping Device Explosion

Bailey Cowan Heckaman PLLC has filed a personal injury lawsuit against Texas Vapes Stores, LLC on behalf of an injured Texas man whose vaping device exploded causing him second-degree burns.

Per the complaint, Plaintiff was handling the SMOK X-Priv vaping device in his home when the device suddenly exploded, and fire erupted from the device. While the device was on fire, it stuck to Plaintiff's hand resulting in serious second-degree burns to the hand, palm, and fingers.

Plaintiff was immediately driven to a nearby hospital.

Read more about this case in our press release.

BCH is proud to advocate for accident victims and their loved ones. Driven by our passion for helping others, our national trial lawyers work hard to earn the trust of our clients and to win them the justice they deserve. To speak with an experienced lawyer, contact BCH online today.

BCH Brings Wrongful Death Suit Over Long Island Man’s Fatal Onewheel Nosedive

Bailey Cowan Heckaman PLLC has filed a new wrongful death lawsuit over alleged product defects associated with the Onewheel self-balancing transportation device.

As stated in the complaint, our firm represents the family of a man who was involved in a crash in August 2020 while riding his Onewheel device down a Long Island road. The lawsuit claims that while the man was riding on flat, paved road, his Onewheel suddenly shut off and nosedived, causing him to be thrown from the board. The incident was seen by several witnesses and recorded on video, the lawsuit states.

As a result of allegedly being thrown from his board, the man sustained severe head and brain trauma, multiple fractures, broken ribs, a broken arm, and a punctured lung. Despite receiving medical attention after his crash, he died from his injuries in September 2020.

Read more about the lawsuit on this press release.

The latest lawsuit follows several wrongful death and personal injury claims brought by BCH on behalf of victims and families across the country. As with other Onewheel lawsuits, the new filing accuses Future Motion of failing to uphold duties to safely design, manufacture, and market its Onewheel device.

FDA Study Links Essure Birth Control to Higher Rates of Pain, Bleeding

New data from a study ordered by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) suggest that women with the Essure permanent birth control implant face higher rates of pain and bleeding compared to women without the device.

The new findings come from a recently published postmarket surveillance study into the long-term safety of Bayer’s Essure birth control device, which was taken off the U.S. market in December 2018 after thousands of women reported adverse side effects and serious complications.

An FDA press release from July 8, 2020 details the agency’s efforts to better understand complications women with Essure may experience. According to early overall results, researchers found Essure patients, when compared to women who underwent tubal ligation as their permanent birth control, tend to have higher rates of:

The FDA reported that it will work with Bayer to release an additional analysis at the 1-year mark following a patient’s Essure implantation, which is earlier than the previously planned 3-year analysis.

The agency continues recommend that women using Essure successfully to prevent pregnancy can and should continue to do so, and that women who suspect the device may be causing pain, bleeding, or other related symptoms speak with their doctors, as device removal can pose risks.

Essure Birth Control: A History of Safety Concerns

Since its approval in 2002, Bayer’s Essure permanent birth control has been the subject of numerous complaints from women across the country, many of whom have reported adverse side effects after having the device implanted, as well as the need for risky removal procedures.

Some of the most serious side effects associated with Essure include:

Over the past several years, health agencies and watchdogs have taken a number of actions to monitor the safety of Essure and inform women with the device about potential risks. In February, researchers at the National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI) suggested that Essure be removed in all symptomatic women. Previous studies have also showed that women with Essure face increased risks of repeat procedures, and that women who undergo Essure removal procedures face numerous risks, potential complications, and physical, financial, and emotional repercussions.

BCH: Fighting For Victims of Medical Device Injuries

Bailey Cowan Heckaman PLLC has been closely following safety concerns, studies, and FDA oversight of Essure for several years, and has made our team available to women and families who’ve suffered losses as a result of the implant in their fight for justice and compensation.

As a firm nationally recognized for our work in complex and high-profile claims – including those involving defective drugs and medical devices – BCH is here to help anyone who would like to learn more about their rights and legal options after experiencing side effects and complications involving Essure.

To request a FREE evaluation of your case, call us or contact us online. Based in Houston, BCH proudly serves victims and families nationwide.

TPC Group Cited by OSHA Over Port Neches Explosion

Texas Petroleum Chemical (TPC Group) – a Houston-based petrochemical manufacturer and owner of a Port Neches industrial plant where a series of explosions in November 2019 resulted in the evacuation of over 60,000 residents – has been cited by OSHA for workplace safety violations.

According to the U.S. Labor Department, regulators began investigating TPC after vapor formed at the base of a butadiene finishing tower at its facility in Port Neches ignited and caused a series of explosions and fires that rocked local communities for miles.

As reported by the Beaumont Enterprise, TPC was cited for three willful violations – the most serious citation classification – over failures to develop and implement emergency shutdown procedures, and nine serious violations for various issues including failures to inspect and test process vessel and piping components.

TPC faces $514,692 in fines, and has 15 business days from the date of the citation to comply or request an informal conference with an OSHA regulators.

Local Residents Still Face Asbestos Exposure Concerns, Needed Repairs

OSHA citations may be the most recent enforcement action to hit TPC, but they are not the only legal woes the company faces.

As we’ve reported on our blog, TPC Group was recently sued by the Texas Attorney General over environmental violations that contributed to the Port Neches explosions. The lawsuit claims TPC violated the Texas Clean Air Act and the Texas Water Code with harmful emissions, as well as contamination of the Star Lake Canal and other water sources.

In addition to regulatory actions, TPC may face additional blowback from local residents frustrated with the company’s failures to timely compensate them for losses caused by the explosions, which scattered debris across the local community, causing damage to homes and businesses.

While investigations are still ongoing, local residents and experts are also concerned about the risks of toxic exposure related to the release of pressurized Butadiene gas, as well as blast debris from the facility which investigators have confirmed contained asbestos.

Legal Support For the Local Community

BCH Partner Aaron Heckaman – who himself has deep ties to the community and family affected by the explosions and fires – has been speaking openly to fellow residents since November.

He has also advised homeowners and business owners to be wary of solicitations from TPC insurance representatives pushing insurance waivers that may limit their legal options to file lawsuits over damages they incurred, or seek compensation for illnesses that may arise as a result of toxic exposure.

As a Houston-based law firm experienced in fighting back against corporations that put profits over people and matters of toxic tortsindustrial explosions, and asbestos litigation, Bailey Cowan Heckaman PLLC is available to help local residents affected by the Port Neches November explosions.

Our team is actively reviewing potential claims, and is available to discuss your rights and legal options during a free consultation. Contact us to speak with a lawyer.

BCH Files Wrongful Death Suit Over Future Motion’s Onewheel “Nosedive”

Bailey Cowan Heckaman PLLC has filed a product liability lawsuit over the wrongful death of a father who suffered fatal brain injuries while riding a Onewheel device that abruptly shut off and nosedived.

What is Onewheel?

Onewheel is a self-balancing electric transport device – sometimes referred to as an electric skateboard or hover board – manufactured and marketed by Silicon Valley-based Future Motion Inc. (FM).

Though it uses a deck similar to that of a skateboard, it is powered by a single heavy tire and gyroscopes / accelerometers designed to keep riders level and allow them to steer by shifting body positioning. It can reach speeds of 20 mph or more.

Though the OneWheel and OneWheel+ XR have become popular, there have been growing concerns over injuries suffered by riders, as well as possible defects like the Onewheel nosedive – a scenario in which the motor may unexpectedly shut down, causing the board to slam forward, strike the ground, and send riders into what can be serious crashes.

That’s what happened to the victim in this case.

About the Lawsuit: Onewheel Nosedive Causes Fatal Injuries

Filed in California Superior Court for the County of Santa Cruz, the wrongful death lawsuit claims that one of the Onewheel’s key features – arguably its most dangerous – is that it provides a “pushback” when approaching the device’s limits of use, as well as when “regenerating” power on downhill grades to charge its battery.

However, the lawsuit notes, it is often the case that rather than solely providing a pushback, which is allegedly designed to warn riders to avoid dangerous situations, the Onewheel may abruptly lose its ability to help maintain balance, nosedive, and throw riders off the device. Different factors – such as a rider’s weight, tire pressure, battery level, speed, and grade of incline or decline – may also cause the Onewheel nosedive.

In our case, the victim had been riding his Onewheel on flat pavement in a Houston neighborhood park when, upon information and belief, the device experienced a nosedive, causing him to be thrown forward from the board. He experienced severe brain trauma in the crash, and later died during surgery.

Read more about the lawsuit here.

Our clients allege that the fatal crash occurred because:

Fighting for Onewheel Accident Victims Nationwide

Our trial attorneys at BCH intend to fight for the justice our clients deserve, and for compensation of the damages they suffered as a result of this tragedy. We are hopeful this case will highlight the dangers allegedly associated with the Onewheel, and compel FM into taking responsibility for its products and any harms they may have caused others.

Our legal team is aware many other consumers have experienced crashes, injuries, and potential defects with their Onewheel devices – including sudden shut offs and the notorious Onewheel nosedive. We are available to review potential claims from victims and families nationwide. Contact us to speak with a lawyer.

FDA Requests Immediate Removal of Zantac, Heartburn Meds Over Cancer Concerns

The U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA) is requesting manufacturers to immediately pull drugs containing ranitidine from the market.

The move, announced in an FDA press release on April 1, 2020, is the latest step in an ongoing investigation that has linked public health risks to a contaminant known as NDMA in ranitidine drugs.

Ranitidine, commonly referred to by the brand name Zantac, is used to treat heartburn.

Here are a few facts about the FDA’s request and ranitidine investigation:

The request for immediate removal of ranitidine drugs means ranitidine products like Zantac will not be available for new or existing prescriptions, or as over-the-counter drugs, in the U.S. Consumers are also advised to stop taking Zantac and any ranitidine tablet or liquid medications they currently have, dispose of them, and not purchase more.

As the FDA Center for Drug Evaluation and Research Director Janet Woodcock said in the announcement:

"We didn't observe unacceptable levels of NDMA in many of the samples that we tested. However, since we don't know how or for how long the product might have been stored, we decided that it should not be available to consumers and patients unless its quality can be assured."

In light of the COVID-19 pandemic, the FDA advises consumers to not return medicines to drug-take-back locations, and instead to follow disposal instructions on medications, or in accordance to the FDA’s recommended safe disposal steps. The FDA has of not found NDMA in other products, including Pepcid (famotidine), Nexium (esomeprazole), or Prilosec (omeprazole).

BCH Is Actively Reviewing Potential Ranitidine / Zantac Lawsuits

Bailey Cowan Heckaman PLLC has been closely following the FDA’s ongoing investigation into ranitidine and Zantac cancer risks, and studies dating back to 2004 which have found risks of bladder cancer due to high levels of NDMA. Despite years of concern, Zantac maker Sanofi failed to bring this information to the public’s attention.

While investigations continue, BCH is actively reviewing cases from individuals and families who may have potential claims, including those involving people who have been diagnosed with bladder, kidney, stomach, or similar cancers, and who have had prescriptions for or long-term use of Zantac or ranitidine products.

BCH is a nationally recognized Civil Trial Law Firm with a highly regarded practice focusing on class multi-district litigation (MDL) and major pharmaceutical injury cases. If you have questions about Zantac lawsuits and your rights and legal options, call or contact us online to request a free consultation. Based in Houston, BCH serves victims and families nationwide.

Texas Sues TPC Over Port Neches Explosion, Release of Asbestos

On Friday February 21, 2020, Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton sued TPC Group over numerous environmental violations that contributed to a series of explosions at the company’s plant in Port Neches late last year.

As discussed on a previous blog, the November 27, 2019 explosions prompted the evacuation of over 60,000 residents, and left many concerned about the potential risks of toxic exposure related to the release of pressurized Butadiene gas, and the significant amount of asbestos installed at the plant.

Legal Update: Asbestos Discovery Confirmed, Texas AG Files Suit

Bailey Cowan Heckaman PLLC has deep ties to the Port Neches area – the same community our very own Partner Aaron Heckaman calls home – and is closely tracking legal updates as the Texas AG’s case unfolds, and concerns within the community grow. We are also available to speak with local residents affected by the blast who have questions about their rights to compensation.

Again, we advise local residents and businesses to be wary of solicitations from TPC insurance representatives and adjusters who want them to sign insurance waivers. Doing so may limit legal options to file lawsuits over suffered harm and losses, and may create potential difficulties in securing sufficient compensation should victims later discover life-altering illnesses that may have been tied to the explosions.

Texas AG Sues TPC

The Texas Attorney General’s Office filed its lawsuit against Texas Petroleum Chemical on Friday February 21, 2020 in Travis County District Court on behalf of the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality. The suit comes after TCEQ officials referred the case to the Texas AG, which has the authority to pursue criminal investigations and steeper penalties, in December. Typically, the agency works to bring companies into compliance within its organization – a strategy many environmental watchdog groups argue often fails to deter repeat offenders. In the lawsuit, the state’s top prosecutor alleges TPC Group violated the Texas Clean Air Act and the Texas Water Code for harmful emissions, and for water contamination in the Star Lake Canal and other

Study: Essure Birth Control Device Should Be Removed in All Symptomatic Women

A study recently published by the National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI) suggests that the implantable birth control device Essure “should be removed in all symptomatic women.”

According to patient reports, most adverse health effects – including perforations, expulsion, and infection – associated with the Essure device have been attributed to incidents during and immediately after implantation. Researchers in this study, however, focused on analyzing the prevalence and severity of non-gynecological symptoms before and after Essure implants were removed.

Non-gynecological symptoms associated with Essure include:

As part of the study, women who experienced at least four non-gynecological symptoms associated with Essure completed a questionnaire prior to device removal, as well as 1, 3, and 6 months after removal. Patients with bleeding or tube perforation were excluded from the study.

Patients in the study experienced their first clinical symptoms at anywhere from 1-60 months (median 13 months) post-placement, and had their devices removed within 12-72 months (a median of 38 months).The most prevalent symptoms prior to device removal ranged from urinary tract disorders (26%) to weakness (96%).

In terms of symptom severity (on a scale of 0 to 10) researchers found the following:

Ultimately, researchers observed a substantial decrease in symptom severity when Essure devices were removed – leading them to conclude that all women with Essure devices who experience symptoms should have them removed.

BCH: Helping Essure Victims Nationwide

The study is yet another affirmation of the dangers associated with Essure, a permanent, implantable birth control system that’s been used by over 750,000 women as a means to prevent pregnancy. In the years following its 2002 FDA approval, Essure – which was developed by Conceptus, a company later bought by Bayer, became the target of thousands of lawsuits filed by women and families who claim the medical device caused severe and fatal injuries.

What followed was a timeline of Essure’s ultimate downfall:

Essure may no longer be sold, but its impact is still felt by thousands of women who must endure painful symptoms, serious injuries, and fatal risks. At Bailey Cowan Heckaman PLLC, our award-winning attorneys are actively representing women nationwide in Essure litigation. If you have a potential case, contact us for a free consultation.

Concerns Rise Over Asbestos in Talc-Based Beauty & Cosmetic Products

With asbestos litigation being the longest, most expensive mass tort in American history, most people are familiar with the naturally occurring set of minerals, its known dangers, and the many laws regulating its use and abatement which exist today.

Although asbestos is perhaps most notably recognized for diseases like mesothelioma, its long latency (the time it takes for the disease to develop), and its impact on workers in many industrial settings, the scope of its impact on public health is much more expansive than many realize.

Asbestos has well-documented risks for adverse health problems – including asbestosis (a lung disease), diffuse pleural thickening, and various forms of cancer – and it can affect a variety of people, professions, and products – from building supplies and barber shops to beauty and cosmetic products.

Advocates, Regulators Look to Standardize Asbestos Testing in Cosmetics

Asbestos contamination in beauty and cosmetic products has become a major focus for safety advocates and regulators in recent years. Due to rising concerns, it was the subject of a recent FDA Public Meeting held on Tuesday, February 4, 2020 at the FDA’s Campus in Silver Spring, MD.

The Meeting – “Testing Methods for Asbestos in Talc and Cosmetic Products Containing Talc” ­– discussed the science behind testing methodologies, terminology, and criteria that can be applied to characterize and measure asbestos and other potentially harmful elongate mineral particles (EMPs) which may exist in cosmetics made with talc (or talcum powder).

The ultimate goal for the FDA Public Meeting is to create more rigorous and standardized testing methods for asbestos and other particles in cosmetics and other consumer products which pose health concerns for the public. The motivations are clear:

Why Is There Asbestos in Cosmetic Products?

Asbestos finds its way into cosmetic products because there is a considerable lack of regulatory oversight and standardized testing involving cosmetic-grade talc – a clay mineral comprised of magnesium, silicon, and oxygen. Talc is used widely in consumer cosmetics – such as lipstick and foundation – to help absorb moisture.

Unless products containing talc are specifically tested for contamination, there is no way to know if it contains asbestos. As such, risks of asbestos contamination in talc and talc-based cosmetics is high.

Unfortunately, regulations over cosmetics are severely insufficient and outdated:

Though the Cosmetic, Toiletry and Fragrance Association (now known as the Personal Care Products Council) encouraged its members in the cosmetics industry to use asbestos-free talc in products as far back as 1976, it’s still being found in makeup and other beauty supplies today. In a time when consumers have access to an array of new and seemingly ingenious cosmetic and beauty supplies, the need for modernizing cosmetics regulations in the U.S. and ensuring product safety is crucial.

With its Public Meeting, the FDA hopes to not only determine effective testing mechanisms – such as transmission electron microscope (TEM), which experts say is far better at detecting asbestos than X-ray diffraction (XRD) or polarized light microscopy (PLM) – a but also obtain input from scientists, attorneys, and industry insiders on regulating how manufacturers source, use, and test talc.

As of now, the FDA is asking cosmetics companies to voluntarily register products and list all ingredients – including talc.

Fighting for Victims of Asbestos Exposure

As a national trial practice with extensive experience in complex asbestos, mesothelioma, and toxic exposure claims, Bailey Cowan Heckaman PLLC believes consumers should never bear the burden of having to determine which products are free from potential contaminants – products made available to the public should arrive on shelves only after testing ensures they are safe.

Unfortunately, that isn’t always the case. Even if new regulations are eventually enacted, product manufacturers and corporations have proven their tendency to prioritize profits over people. This means protecting the public will rely not only on regulatory enforcement and compliance, but also aggressive litigation against manufacturers that fail to ensure the safety of their products.

At BCH, our Houston-based attorneys actively represent victims and families across Texas and the U.S. in a range of civil lawsuits involving asbestos exposure and product liability claims. We’re available 24/7 to discuss your potential case, and what options you may have. Call  or contact us online to request a FREE consultation.