The family of a 66-year old Los Angeles woman killed in a 2009 car crash has filed a products liability lawsuit against Toyota alleging that the car the woman was operating had a faulty electronic throttle control mechanism leading to sudden, unexpected acceleration in the vehicle. The woman was killed when the car she was driving accelerated to speeds of up to 100 mph on a 30 mph speed limit road. In order to avoid striking other motorists, she swerved her car onto a median and crashed into a tree and a telephone pole.
In a recent court case, California employers scored a victory in the legal process as the state's regulators ruled that a national insurance provider had to cease forcing employers to resolve disputes over worker's compensation at an out-of-state location. California's Insurance Commissioner announced a settlement with Zurich American Insurance Co., an Illinois-based firm, which allowed for the arbitration of worker's compensation disputes involving California businesses in the state rather than in Chicago, where the company is located. Employers had complained that this requirement was prohibitively expensive and gave an unfair advantage to insurers, thus forcing them to pay higher premiums. The right to resolve disputes in California is now an option, with the choice left up to the employer.
Recently, the family of a 24-year-old woman killed by a hit-and-run driver as she was riding her bicycle to her boyfriend's house has filed a wrongful death lawsuit against the 31-year old driver. The wrongful death suit alleges that the driver was negligently operating his vehicle when he hit the woman, and that the woman had adequate lighting on the front and back of her bicycle. The driver alleged that he did not see the woman riding her bike due to vegetation protruding from the road, and that he thought he had hit a deer when he struck the woman, but turned himself in when he realized what had actually happened. The lawsuit seeks $5 million in damages for effects such as sorrow and mental anguish.
A recent study undergone by the University of Michigan found that victims of traumatic brain injuries are more likely to fall victim to ischemic strokes. In an ischemic stroke, blood flow to the brain is blocked and reduced, causing extensive brain damage or death. The researchers scoured the records of California hospitals of patients admitted to the emergency room for trauma between 2005 and 2009, and found that the occurrence of a traumatic brain injury increased the risk of an ischemic stroke by 31 percent. This makes a brain injury tied with hypertension, or high blood pressure, as the leading cause of ischemic strokes.