Articles Posted in Wrongful Death

A 15-year-old student was struck by a vehicle Wednesday morning near Gulf High School.

According to Pasco County Fire Rescue, the teen was struck by a van in the intersection of School Road and Madison Street in New Port Richey.

Authorities said the teen was unresponsive and was airlifted from the scene to an area hospital.

The driver of the van is a teacher at the school and coach of the boys soccer team.

The teacher’s 7-year-old child also was in the van. The teacher, who told authorities it was dark and he did not see the teen, was quite upset after the crash, officials said.

Officials did not say what led to the crash, but police said speed does not appear to be a factor.

The teen underwent surgery and remains in critical condition.

A pedestrian accident is a common and tragic occurrence at certain busy intersections. Motorists have a responsibility to yield to pedestrians, and pedestrians have the right of way. An investigation into the circumstances behind a pedestrian accident can usually provide the evidence needed to help injury victims recover full and just compensation for their suffering.

Injuries caused by pedestrian accidents may include internal bleeding, broken arms or legs, head injuries, back and neck injuries, or spinal cord trauma. Fatal pedestrian accidents leave a family without a loved one. While nothing can replace the loss of a loved one, recovering monetary compensation from the at-fault party can help cover medical bills, funeral expenses, etc. so that your family does not have any added financial stress.

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A 50-year-old motorcyclist died Friday after colliding with a van that pulled out in front of him, according to the Florida Highway Patrol.

The Odessa man died at Medical Center of Trinity, the Highway Patrol said. The crash occurred near the intersection of State Road 54 and Black Lake Road in Odessa.

Here’s what troopers believe happened:

A Brooksville man was driving a 2015 Chevy Express van south on Asturian Parkway in Odessa about 5 p.m. Friday.

At the same time, the motorcyclist was driving a 2004 Harley Davidson Fatboy west on SR 54, with a woman as his passenger.

As the motorcyclist approached Black Lake Road, the driver of the van tried to turn left into the eastbound lane of SR 54. The driver of the van drove into the motorcyclist’s path, troopers said, and the motorcycle collided with the front of the van.

The motorcyclist was taken to the hospital, where he died. The passenger on the motorcycle was taken to St. Joseph’s Hospital with critical injuries.

Alcohol was not a factor in the incident, troopers said, and the driver of the van was wearing his seatbelt.

As of Saturday, chargers were pending.

A motorcycle crash can happen in a matter of seconds, but the consequences can last a lifetime. As the victim of a motorcycle accident caused by another person’s negligence, you may have the right to pursue financial compensation for all resulting damages.

Unfortunately, motorcyclists and their passengers are more likely to suffer serious injuries in an accident than other motorists. This is because they lack the protections passenger vehicles provide like no windshield, seatbelt, cushion, or other barrier, which exposes the rider and passenger to the environment and its many hazards. Moreover, a motorcycle cannot usually stand upright on its own, so most accidents cause the two-wheeled motor vehicle to tip over. Because of this, injuries can be severe, and even deadly.

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A 54-year-old woman died Wednesday after she was hit by a truck while walking in the road, according to the Florida Highway Patrol.

The woman died at Florida Hospital Zephyrhills.

Troopers believe the collision occurred about 7 p.m. Wednesday after a 61-year-old man driving a 2013 Ford F-150 east on County Road 54, nearing the intersection with Ohio Street struck the woman walking

east in the roadway on County Road 54, east of Ohio Street.

Troopers said alcohol wasn’t a factor in the collision, and no charges were filed.

After you lose someone in a fatal pedestrian accident, it might be difficult to think about pursuing legal action. However, there are a few things that you should know about wrongful death cases immediately after a pedestrian accident:

  • Your time to file a case is limited by the state statute of limitations. In Florida, you have two years from the date of death to file a claim. You may not be able to recover damages after that time expires.
  • The stress of filing a claim does not have to be your burden. A wrongful death attorney will handle settlement negotiations, discovery, and litigation on your behalf.
  • Filing a wrongful death claim may be your only chance to recover for medical bills, funeral costs, lost income, pain and suffering, and other damages that the driver caused when your loved one was killed. If you choose to not take any legal action, then you are unlikely to ever see a fair financial settlement.

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The Florida Highway Patrol is investigating a fatal hit-and-run crash at an intersection in Holiday Tuesday evening.

According to the agency, the crash involved a pedestrian walking into the path of a vehicle at the intersection of Flora Avenue and Brightwell Drive around 6:15 p.m.

The pedestrian was transported to a local hospital, where he later died.

The vehicle involved in the crash fled the scene after impact.

Anyone with information regarding the crash is asked to contact the Florida Highway Patrol at (813) 558-1800 or by texting *FHP. Anonymous tips can also be reported to Crime Stoppers at 800-873-TIPS.

Auto accidents happen every day across the state of Florida, but there is nothing worse than a hit-and-run accident. Florida law requires all drivers to stop when they are involved in an accident that results in damage to a vehicle, personal injury, or death. The law also requires that the drivers exchange information such as name, address, phone number, driver’s license number, license plate number, and insurance information. If a motorist chooses to flee the scene, this is considered a misdemeanor, but if the collision resulted in serious injury or death, then it is enhanced to a felony carrying a five year prison term.

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A 1-year-old boy in Wesley Chapel is in critical condition after Pasco County Fire rescue says he fell into a pool.

The near-drowning happened on Tremont Drive in Wesley Chapel around 7 p.m.

The boy has been transported to an area hospital. No further information is available at this time.

Drowning, in a swimming pool or another body of water, is a very real threat, especially to babies and young children. Drowning is the leading cause of all accidental deaths among children one to four years of age, and the next leading cause among all children from one to 14 years of age.

Drownings and swimming accidents can easily occur in public and private swimming pools, fitness clubs, lakes, ponds, and rivers, and even in home spas, hot tubs, or  bathtubs. In non-fatal drowning cases, brain damage can happen after only four minutes of submersion. An estimated 20% of drowning victims suffer severe, permanent neurological disability if they survive the incident.

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The National Safety Council estimates 420 people will be killed during the three-day weekend, which begins at 6 p.m. Friday, Aug. 31, and ends at 11:59 p.m. Monday, Sept. 3.

An additional 48,400 injuries are estimated to occur that require medical attention.

While these statistics may seem daunting, there are ways to help prevent accidents and injury to you or your loved ones. Here are some safety tips our Pasco County Auto Accident Attorneys recommend to make it a safe and enjoyable weekend for everyone.

  • Wear a seatbelt: NSC estimates that about 163 lives may be saved this Labor Day weekend for those wearing seat belts
  • NEVER drive while intoxicated: If you are consuming alcohol, do not get behind the wheel. Call a taxi or use Uber or Lyft to get where you need to go safely.
  • Practice defensive driving: Get plenty of sleep to avoid fatigue, and drive attentively, avoiding distractions.
  • Before heading out on road trips, learn about your vehicle’s safety systems and how to use them: Fix recalls immediately and make sure your vehicle is ready to make a long distance trip.

While Labor Day can be a fun, relaxing time, it is also one of the most dangerous holidays of the year. Enjoy this end of summer time with family and friends, but remember to be safe!

If you find yourself involved in an accident this holiday weekend, do not delay in calling our Pasco County Auto Accident Attorneys at Whittel & Melton for a free consultation at 727-847-2299. We will be available 24/7 to help you.

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A Wesley Chapel man was killed by another driver while riding his motorcycle Saturday.

The 23-year-old was riding his motorcycle southbound on U.S. Highway 19 just south of San Marco Drive at about 12:30 p.m. when he was struck by a vehicle driven by 83-year-old man, who was attempting to make a U-turn, according to the Florida Highway Patrol.

The 83-year-old man sustained minor injuries and was transported to Bayonet Point.

The motorcyclist was pronounced dead at the scene.

The investigation is ongoing.

If someone you love was killed in a motorcycle U-turn accident, you may be both grief-stricken and anxious about the financial repercussions. At Whittel & Melton, our Pasco County Motorcycle Accident Attorneys understand motorcycle culture and laws. We can evaluate your case to help you decide what your  legal options are for seeking financial compensation.

If a family member has been involved in a motorcycle accident that resulted in wrongful death due to another driver’s negligence, you may be entitled to compensation and our attorneys would like to make sure that you are compensated adequately for your losses. We know the aftermath of a serious motorcycle accident can be messy, and we will stand by your side from throughout the entire process to make sure you get what is rightfully owed to you.

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An 81-year-old man died Monday after colliding with a car on U.S. 301, according to the Florida Highway Patrol.

The Dade City man was riding south on the sidewalk along the highway around 8 a.m., according to the FHP. When he tried to cross the highway’s southbound lanes, he was hit by a Chevrolet Cruze driven by 69-year-old man, also traveling south.

The man was taken to an area hospital, where he died of his injuries, according to the FHP.

Bicycle accidents involving cars are a huge problem. Cyclists, like pedestrians, suffer the major brunt of injuries mostly due to the sheer size difference. Unlike occupants of passenger cars, who are protected by seat belts, airbags, and the walls of the car itself, cyclists have minimal protection aside from a helmet. Cyclists are no match for the weight of a several-ton car.

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The Fourth of July is next week and that means firework displays and cookouts will be on the rise. Our Pasco County Injury Attorneys at Whittel & Melton want everyone to know that these activities can cause extreme injuries to children and adults when safety measures are not taken into consideration.  

According to the United States Consumer Product Safety Commission, an average of 230 people will go to emergency rooms every single day due to firework-related injuries in the month surrounding the Fourth of July holiday. Fireworks are nothing to mess around with as they can cause serious burn injuries. In fact, a sparkler, which many consider safe for children to hold, can reach temperatures close to 2,000 degrees. It is important to always supervise children around fireworks. Other common fireworks-related injuries include loss of hearing and eyesight, shock, smoke inhalation and loss of fingers.

If you plan on celebrating this Fourth of July with fireworks, we urge you to keep the following safety tips in mind:

  • Do not allow children to play with fireworks. We encourage you to not let your child to play with a sparkler, but if you do, please constantly supervise them and never let them light the sparkler themselves.
  • All body parts should be kept away from fireworks.
  • If you choose to light fireworks, please only light one at a time.
  • Keep a bucket of water or hose nearby in case a fire erupts.
  • All used fireworks must be doused with water before throwing them in the trash.
  • Please note the legalities surrounding Florida and fireworks, and take that into consideration before buying. Under Florida law, only sparklers, approved by the Florida Division of State Fire Marshal, are legal for consumer usage. It is illegal to use exploding and/or flying fireworks in Florida, which include: shells and mortars, multiple tube devices, Roman candles, rockets and firecrackers.

On a similar note, if you are going to be grilling, follow these tips as many people are injured by gas and charcoal grills:

  • Always supervise the grill and the surrounding area.
  • Do not grill in an enclosed area.
  • Keep the grill in an open area away from your house, deck, trees or anything flammable.
  • Use long-handed tools when cooking so you can avoid serious burn injuries.
  • Always follow the grill’s manufacturer’s directions.

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A Citrus County woman was killed and four others, including her two children, were injured in a Sunday morning crash in Pasco County.

The crash happened on U.S. 41 just south of County Line Road in Spring Hill.

According to the Florida Highway Patrol, a 26-year-old man was driving northbound in a 2018 Hyundai Accent when he drifted into the southbound lane. His vehicle collided head-on with a 2002 Saturn SC2 driven by a 30-year-old woman.

The woman died at the scene. Two passengers in her vehicle, a 9-year-old and a 7-year-old, were airlifted to St. Joseph’s Hospital with serious injuries.

The other driver and his passenger were taken to Bayonet Point Hospital with serious injuries.

FHP did determine that alcohol was a factor in the crash.

The roadway was closed for hours as crews cleared the scene.

The collision is still under investigation.

Alcohol-related collisions are entirely avoidable. When drunk drivers cause serious personal injuries and/or wrongful death, our Pasco County Auto Accident Attorneys at Whittel & Melton can provide the legal representation needed to hold the responsible party accountable and to recover the compensation you deserve.

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