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Arlington Heights bike accident injury attorney

If you are among the many commuters biking more often due to this unprecedented time in our country, then it is important to stay up to date on your rights on the roadways, especially when it comes to protecting yourself from the likelihood of bicycle accidents and injuries. Whether you have just begun biking as a way to cope with stay-at-home orders, to increase your exercise, or simply to rely less on your vehicle during this time, there is some good news for you: Illinois law states that bicyclists have many of the same rights as drivers. 

What Rights Do Bicyclists Have on the Road?

Generally speaking, drivers are required to treat you, the biker, as they would treat other drivers. While it may be a relief to know that you are entitled to most of the same rights that regular motorists are, it is helpful to be aware that you are also accountable for the same responsibilities. For example, bikers should travel in the same direction as vehicles, and if you drive a low-speed or electric bike, you are required to follow all the same laws that are applicable to cyclists, just as drivers must obey all the same laws that apply to them. 


Arlington Heights car accident attorney

Many times, when drivers think of using a seat belt, they assume that as long as they buckle up at least some of the time, or for long-distance trips, nothing else really matters. Many drivers adopt the mentality that occasional seat belt use is ”good enough.” However, the truth is that although car accident injuries are more likely for drivers and passengers who choose not to buckle up, they can also occur for those who use their seat belts incorrectly. Yes, it is possible to wear a seat belt the wrong way, and in many cases, wearing it the wrong way can be just as dangerous as not wearing one at all.

How You Wear Your Seat Belt Matters

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reports that drivers and passengers can reduce their chances of moderate to critical injury by 50 percent, and chances of fatality by 45 percent by buckling up, but how you buckle your seat belt matters. Here are some dangers of wearing your seat belt the wrong way:


Rolling Meadows medical negligence attorney Legionnaires disease

A common cause for personal injury cases and medical negligence lawsuits, Legionnaires’ disease, originally discovered back in 1976, still continues to cause health problems nationwide due to building maintenance negligence and misdiagnosis within the healthcare community. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports that 1 out of 10 people who contract Legionnaires' dies from the disease, and health departments recorded approximately 10,000 cases in the United States in the year 2018 alone. While these numbers represent official cases, experts say these statistics are not entirely accurate, as many new cases remain undiagnosed. If you fear you or your loved one has recently been exposed to the bacteria responsible for Legionnaires’ disease, it is important to understand how the disease is transmitted and how your health may be affected.

How the Disease Spreads

Manifesting as a pneumonia lung infection, Legionnaires’ disease is caused by Legionella bacteria, which grows naturally in fresh water supplies, such as lakes and streams. When this bacteria makes its way into a building’s man-made water management system and multiplies, it is at this stage that it becomes hazardous for humans to breathe in. If the plumbing system of a building or structure is not properly maintained, the bacteria can be inhaled via mist from showers, cooling fans, hot tubs, or even decorative fountains. Here are some basic transmission facts you should be aware of:


Schaumburg medical negligence attorney Legionnaires disease

First discovered following a 1976 outbreak at an American Legion convention in Philadelphia, Legionnaires’ disease left affected attendees with serious lung infections -- a type of pneumonia -- caused by bacteria known as Legionella. Research has shown that this bacteria grows in poorly managed water systems, often due to negligence on behalf of a building’s owner, such as those who own a nursing home facility that houses a complex water system. When mist from this infected water is inhaled, through showers or hot tubs, for example, residents can contract Legionnaires’ disease, posing grave risks to their health. The same bacteria that causes this disease was also responsible for cases of Pontiac fever that occurred in Michigan during the 1960s. 

The Prevalence of Legionnaires’ Cases Today

Although the disease earned its name back in the 1970s, cases of Legionnaires’ disease are still very prevalent today. The number of cases has fluctuated over time, but the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reported there were nearly 10,000 cases in the United States in 2018. The CDC has also stated that this number is likely a misrepresentation of the actual number of people affected by the disease, as many cases are undiagnosed. 


Rolling Meadows personal injury attorney Legionnaires' diseaseAlthough many people may have heard of Legionnaires' disease, they may not know that it is a severe form of pneumonia. In many cases, it is possible that the disease could have been prevented. If you or someone you love has been diagnosed with the condition, you and your family may be entitled to compensation. In some cases, the misdiagnosis of this disease may even be the result of medical malpractice. Typically contracted through the inhalation of contaminated mist, the condition can be fatal, especially in those with compromised immune systems or certain lung conditions. Victims and their families may be able to pursue compensation for a Legionnaires' disease infection through a personal injury or wrongful death lawsuit. 

Symptoms of the Disease

At first, Legionnaires' disease may look like the flu, as early symptoms include headaches, fever, and muscle aches. However, as the condition worsens -- typically by the second or third day after contracting the infection -- the victim may experience chest pain, shortness of breath, gastrointestinal issues, confusion, and severe coughing, which may produce mucus or blood. If left untreated, the condition can (and often does) result in fatality. Those with compromised immune systems, such as the elderly and those with specific lung disorders, are not only at higher risk for fatalities, but they are also at an increased risk for contracting Legionnaires’ disease. A milder form of Legionnaires disease, Pontiac fever, can produce the early symptoms but may not progress in severity. Still, victims may be entitled to compensation for any medical expenses, missed time at work, or pain and suffering related to their condition.

How Is the Disease Contracted? 

Like other forms of pneumonia, Legionnaires' disease is an inflammation in the lungs caused by an infection. It is contracted through the inhalation of the bacterium legionella. Found in both soil and water, the most common method of intake is through a mist, such as via an air conditioning unit of an old building, where the bacteria is able to grow and run rampant. Other places and ways that the condition can be contracted include:

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