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Stephen M. Di Stefano is an expert Civil Trial Attorney as certified by the Supreme Court of New Jersey. He is also a member of the firm’s Accident & Personal Injury practice in the Marlton, NJ office. Stephen represents plaintiffs in personal injury matters, representing clients who have suffered catastrophic, life-changing injuries in motor vehicle collisions or fall-down incidents. Additionally, he has extensive experience in representing clients who have sustained serious injuries resulting from dog bites, product liability, assault and other cases of general liability.

Recently, while I was walking in Center City Philadelphia on my way to a deposition, I took notice of the many construction projects occurring in various sites throughout my journey. Visit any major city and you are bound to see a skyscraper being constructed. Although construction sites can provide workers with good jobs, there are also many dangerous aspects of those jobs.

For example, in a recent case, a 20-year old construction worker was on a scaffold in New York installing metal siding on a building. The worker was asked to go to the roof of the building to provide assistance for a different job. The worker went to the roof wearing his safety harness, but was unable to find a place to tie off. While he was on the roof, he fell about 20 feet to the ground. The construction worker suffered many severe injuries, including a head injury, spinal fractures, rib fractures, and internal injuries including a renal hematoma, a lung contusion, a lacerated spleen, and cervical and lumbar disk herniations.

Even worse, as a result of his head injury the worker developed degeneration of the brain tissue, which is a condition called encephalomalacia. This resulted in memory loss, motor problems, and impaired thought-processing and other cognitive functions. He is permanently disabled as a result of his injuries from the accident.

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There’s a good chance you’ve heard the phrase, “Dogs are man’s best friend,” at least once in your life. So it shouldn’t come as a surprise to learn that more and more households have dogs as pets. If you go for a hike, or a run, or a walk around your neighborhood, it’s likely that you will see at least one person walking a dog. In most situations, everything is fine and the dog presents no issue to the approaching stranger. However, what happens when something goes awry and a dog attacks someone for no reason? As you may already know, the outcome can be catastrophic.

In a recent case in Georgia, an 8-year-old girl was playing in front of her home when two pit bull/mixed breed dogs, who were owned by a neighbor, attacked her. The dogs dragged the girl about 100 feet, mauling her arms, legs, torso, and face. A driver passing by saw the girl and called 911. The police arrived, but the dogs were still attacking the victim. An officer shot and killed one of the dogs. The other dog escaped but was caught later and then euthanized.

The victim sustained severe wounds to her arms, and she required vein transplants from both legs. Surgeons were unable to save her left, nondominant arm, and it was amputated at the elbow. Afterwards, the girl is now wearing a prosthetic arm. She also has permanent scarring to her face, upper torso, and legs, and will require future surgeries, including scar-revision procedures, as she grows up.

Continue Reading The Serious Impact of a Dog Attack

Even though autumn is upon us, the ongoing pleasant weather often allows us to continue to have parties, picnics and carnivals outdoors for at least another few weeks until the temperature drops. While these events are typically fun and enjoyable, it is important to note that accidents can happen at such events, and sometimes the consequences are quite serious.

In one such recent accident, a man was attending his wife’s company picnic in New Jersey. The company holding the picnic had rented a Eurobungy bungee-trampoline device for the event. The device consists of a trampoline base and a harness with bungee cords on each side, which are attached to poles extending from the trampoline’s base. A user is strapped into the harness, hoisted into the air, and encouraged to jump on the trampoline while holding onto the bungee cords. From there, the operator of the device can control how high the user is lifted into the air.

While the rider was descending from a jump, the operator began lifting him again before his feet had a chance to touch down on the trampoline. As a result, the rider’s left arm took the full force of his descent. The man immediately felt severe pain in the arm and was diagnosed with a hyperextension injury and a rupture of the distal biceps tendon, which required surgery to repair. He then had physical therapy and incurred about $8,500 in medical expenses. He continues to suffer from pain, weakness and a reduced range of motion in the arm. He also has two large scars on the arm from the surgery.

Continue Reading Be Aware of Potential Hazards at Outdoor Parties & Events

Throughout the year many of us will be traveling with family and friends on vacations from work and the everyday grind. Most of us will stay in hotels or rental homes while vacationing. While you should not get bogged down worrying about the possibility of getting into an accident or mishap while on vacation, it’s still worth noting that accidents do happen, and safety should always be a top priority.

In one recent case, a hotel guest slipped and fell on water surrounding an ice vending machine. The injured guest was later diagnosed as having a bulging disk at L5-S1 with facet joint hypertrophy and lumbar strain. This caused persistent low-back pain with radiculopathy. The pain caused the woman to develop an altered gait, which allegedly caused her to slip and fall down the stairs at her boyfriend’s home about two months later, further worsening her injuries. She underwent a series of 17 pain management injections and physical therapy treatment. She continues to suffer pain in her back, which is worse when she walks or stands for long periods of time.

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Fast food restaurants are an American staple. Drive down any major highway in the US and you’re bound to see a sign or advertisement for some fast food chain’s restaurant. Although these restaurants can provide tasty meals at an affordable price, they have also been the subject of many personal injury lawsuits over the years. The McDonald’s “hot coffee” lawsuit is one case that many people think of when the topic of fast food restaurant lawsuits comes up. What many don’t realize, though, is that fast food restaurants have been the subject of personal injury lawsuits for other reasons. For example, these restaurants’ floors are often made of tile, which can create dangerous slip hazards to customers.

In one recent case, a woman and her family went to eat at a local hamburger restaurant. As she was walking back from the bathroom, she slipped and fell on grease that was on the floor. She was diagnosed with a back sprain and a contusion to her left elbow. Unfortunately, despite physical therapy, she developed severe, persistent elbow pain. She was later diagnosed with complex regional pain syndrome, a chronic permanent condition that caused her to suffer electric-shock-like pain, swelling, and burning to her arm. Her past medical expenses totaled about $36,000, and her future medical expenses are estimated to be about $359,400.

She attempted to return to her job, but was unable to remain on a reduced schedule and instead went on temporary disability. Her past lost earnings totaled about $94,600, and her future economic loss is estimated around $1.71 million.

Continue Reading Pedestrian Pitfalls and Other Dangers for the Unwary

With the summer in full swing, many people will see their social calendars filling up with fun events such as parties, gatherings, events, and the like. While summer is a time for fun, we need to remember that regardless of whether we are hosts or guests, safety is always an important factor that all of

Now that summer is almost here, it is time to remind everyone of an important topic: trampoline accidents. Although they can be fun, trampolines also can be very dangerous, especially if multiple people are using one at the same time. Trampoline accidents have resulted in life-changing injuries to adults and children alike. Such accidents can