dog bites

Dog Bites in Alabama: What Are the Most Dangerous Dog Breeds?

In recent decades, researchers have studied the underlying causes behind aggressive or even deadly interactions between human beings and dogs, and whether certain dog breeds are more prone to attacking humans.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention conducted a study in the mid-1990s regarding dog breeds that caused fatal attacks in the United States between 1979 and 1996. The Pit Bull was identified as being involved in 60 fatal attacks, Rottweiler was responsible for 29, and German Shepherds had 19 attacks.

Dog attacks make headlines on a regular basis even today. As per a national victims’ group, the canine breeds responsible for these attacks largely remain the same. These are the top dog breeds identified by DogsBite.org after compiling a 13-year fatality report involving attacks between 2005 and 2017.

Most Dangerous Dog Breeds

Pit Bull

Pit Bull attacks account for the most deaths in the United States. This breed is also responsible for the highest percentage of unprovoked attacks. Pit Bulls were responsible for 64% dog-bite related fatalities last year in the United States.

Rottweiler

Rottweilers are a close second when it comes to fatal and unprovoked attacks. The bite of this breed is extremely powerful. In fact, it measures 1,180 to 1,460 newtons on the force scale. Rottweilers were the top cause (almost 50%) behind deaths between 1993 and 1996 as per the CDC study.

German Shepherd

German Shepherds are beautiful dogs with a bite force of 1,060 newtons. This is enough to easily break your shin bone in two. There have been studies that found that this dog is also responsible for attacking smaller breeds.

Doberman Pinscher

The sheer strength and size of Doberman Pinschers make them a dangerous dog breed. The last reported Doberman-caused death in the United States was in 2011. This was when a Doberman Pinscher attacked and killed an elderly woman. She was the dog’s owner.

Bullmastiff

These large and intimidating dogs can easily weigh as much as 130 pounds. The Bullmastiff was responsible for the death of a Texas teenage boy. The boy was protecting another young girl that was being attacked and dragged by the canine.

Husky

Huskies are energetic and athletic dogs. They are also a current Instagram favorite. However, these are working dogs – not social ones. Siberian Huskies caused 15 deaths in the United States between 1979 and 1998.

Malamute

Malamutes are often known to attack other smaller breeds and animals. They caused 5 fatal dog bites between the years 1966 and 1980.

Wolf Hybrid

These are dogs that are the result of direct crossbreeding with wolves. Although all dogs are descendants of wolves, the bloodline has been diluted to a less aggressive degree in most dog breeds.

Wolf hybrids are unpredictable and skittish. In fact, it is illegal to own a wolf hybrid in most states. This dog breed was responsible for 14 deaths in the United States between 1979 and 1998 as per the CDC.

Boxers

Boxers are descendants of hunting dogs. They have powerful bites and strong jaws. They are a highly protective breed. This can be a good thing if you want a guard dog, but it also means that the breed has the propensity to be highly dangerous. The last known fatality caused by Boxers in the United States occurred in 2013.

Great Dane

Great Danes are the giants of dogs, often known as gentle giants. However, they can be very dangerous. Full-grown male Danes can easily weigh 200 pounds. In 2003, a Great Dane was responsible for killing a 2-year-old girl in the US.

Dog Bites are not just Painful but also Expensive

An estimated 1,000 people need emergency care in the United States each day because of dog bite injuries. These injuries, in some tragic cases, result in the death of the victim. There were 42 dog-bite-related deaths in the US in 2014. 20 of these deaths occurred in children while 16 were in individuals older than 50.

Most of the dog’s individual aggressiveness is determined by how it has been trained by its owner. But that said, there are certain dog breeds that are simply more aggressive and dangerous as compared to others. This is usually because of their massive strength and size. Since 2003, the average claim for dog attacks has increased by 90%.

This is driven by higher settlements and increasing medical costs. Injuries inflicted by canines accounted for more than 35% of homeowners’ liability in 2017. This was to the tune of nearly $700 million.

Dog attacks required 28,000 people to undergo reconstructive surgery in 2015. The cost of a dog-injury-related hospital stay is estimated to be $18,200. This is without rehabilitative care and lost wages.

Committed Dog Bite Attorneys in Alabama are Ready to Fight for You

The personal injury attorneys at M. Adam Jones & Associates have helped many victims obtain the compensation they deserve following a dog injury. We understand how to deal with animal attack cases and will help you take the right steps to maximize recovery.

Contact us today to schedule a free, no-obligation consultation with a member of our legal team.

  1. Adam Jones,

Managing Partner

  1. Adam Jones & Associates, LLC

206 N. Lena St.

Dothan, AL 36303

Tel: 334-699-5599

Fax: 334-699-5588

 

workplace injury

Should I Be in a Hurry to Return to Work after an Injury?

After someone is injured in a workplace accident, employers and their insurers are usually eager for them to get back to work. The sooner an injured employee returns to work, the sooner they can stop paying workers’ compensation benefits. The employee may also be anxious to start working again so they can get a full paycheck and get back to a regular routine.

While it is understandable for a worker to want to get back on the job, it is important to do so with an abundance of caution. Coming back to work too soon is definitely not in the employee’s best interests. They need an adequate amount of time to recover from their injury, and if it is not fully healed, there is a chance that the injury will be aggravated, and their condition will become worse. In some extreme cases, they could even end up with a permanent injury that prevents them from going back to their job at all.

If something like this were to happen, it would not only be bad for your physical health, it could jeopardize your workers’ compensation benefits as well. When you go on workers’ comp, you have a duty to mitigate the effects of your injury. This is done by receiving necessary medical care, doing what your doctor tells you to do, and taking the time that is needed to get fully recovered or if applicable, reach maximum medical improvement.

Your boss might be putting subtle pressure on you to come back to work. You might be hearing comments like, “we really need you back” or “I sure hope the doctor gives you approval to come back to work soon.” Keep in mind, however, that you are the one who loses by going back to work before you are physically able to do so. If you get hurt again, you are the one who will pay the price, not them.

When Should I Return to Work after an Injury?

The simple answer is, you should only return to work after you have been medically cleared to do so and your doctor issues a “return to work” date. While you are out of work, you should be making regular visits to your doctor to receive updates on your progress.

During each visit, the doctor typically provides notations about your work status. At some point, the doctor might clear you to come back to work either “with restrictions” or “without restrictions.” If you are cleared to come back with restrictions, this means that you still have some physical limitations, and you might only be able to do certain jobs.

For example, you might not be ready yet to do tasks that require heavy lifting or standing on your feet for too long. If your work clearance has restrictions, be sure to follow them as directed by your doctor so you don’t re-aggravate your injury.

When you go in for your doctor visits, be sure to ask them about your disability and work status each time. It could happen that a doctor clears you to go back to work on paper, but they fail to tell you this verbally. In such cases, you might not realize that you have a “return to work” date, and if you do not come back to work on that date, you could be in trouble with your employer.

Could I Lose My Job if I Don’t Come Back to Work When My Employer Wants?

This is a bit of a tricky question. An employer is not allowed to fire an employee in retaliation for filing a workers’ compensation claim, but in most cases, they are also not required to hold your job for you while you are out on workers’ comp leave. There are some exceptions to this, however, such as if you have an employment contract that guarantees your job, or if your injury qualifies you to take leave under the Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA). In any case, an employer will usually take an employee back after they are medically cleared as long as they have a position available for them.

Suffered a Workplace Injury in Alabama? Contact an Experienced Workers’ Compensation Lawyer

Workers’ comp claims can be complicated and confusing, and there are a lot of difficult questions such as when you should return to work after an injury. For this reason, it is always best to work with a skilled and knowledgeable workers’ compensation attorney. For experienced legal help with workplace accidents and injuries in Alabama, contact M. Adam Jones and Associates or assistance. Call our office today at 334-581-9238 or message us online to schedule a free consultation with a member of our legal team.

Premises liability

I was Hurt on Someone Else’s Property, what are my Options?

During a typical week, most of us spend a major portion of our time outside of our home. We go to work, go out shopping, go out to restaurants, spend time with friends, and occasionally go on vacations. Sometimes, accidents can happen when we are out on someone else’s property. Many times, these are just minor mishaps. Other times, however, they can result in moderate to severe injuries.

If you were hurt on the property of another party, you may have a right to compensation under the legal theory known as “premises liability”. There are a number of incidents that may be covered under this theory, such as:

  • Slip and fall accidents;
  • Animal attacks;
  • Elevator and escalator accidents;
  • Swimming pool accidents;
  • Fires and explosions;
  • Exposure to toxic substances;
  • Injuries that happen because of negligent security.

An owner or caretaker of the property may be liable for injuries sustained by visitors under certain circumstances. For a premises liability claim to be successful, however, the plaintiff must prove several elements, including:

  • The defendant owed the plaintiff a duty of reasonable care;
  • The defendant breached this duty;
  • This breach resulted in the plaintiff getting injured;
  • The plaintiff’s injury resulted in compensable losses.

The extent of the duty owed by a property owner or caretaker depends largely on what type of visitor you were when you were hurt on the property. There are three general categories of property visitors:

  • Invitees: These are visitors who have explicit or implied permission to be on the property, usually for the benefit of the owner or caretaker. Examples of invitees include customers of restaurants, grocery stores, and other retail establishments, hotel and resort guests, residential and commercial property tenants, and individuals who are walking through a public park. The highest duty of care is owed to invitees, and those in charge of the property are responsible to take reasonable steps to keep the premises free of hazards and to adequately warn visitors of any dangerous conditions that exist.
  • Licensees: A licensee is someone who also has explicit or implied permission to enter a property, but they generally do so for their own benefit. Examples of visitors in this category include social guests, neighbors, and delivery carriers. A slightly lower duty of care is owed to licensees; property owners are required to take reasonable steps to protect and adequately warn visitors of known hazards, but they are not necessarily required to inspect the property to discover unknown dangers.
  • Trespassers: A trespasser is someone who is not authorized to be on the property. As such, landowners have no legal obligation to protect trespassers from hazardous conditions, they must only refrain from willful and wanton conduct or entrapment that may cause them harm.

Pursuing a Premises Liability Claim in Alabama

If you were an invitee or licensee when you were hurt on someone else’s property, you may have a case against the owner, depending on the specific circumstances. However, establishing your visitor status and duty of care owed to you is only half the battle. If the injury occurred in Alabama, you must also know that a defendant can be barred from recovering damages if they are found to be even 1% responsible for the underlying incident that caused the injury. You can be certain that the defendant will try to use this against you by claiming that the injury was at least partially your fault. Some possible defenses they may use include:

  • The condition was clearly marked (with a sign, cone, or similar);
  • The hazardous condition was “open and obvious” to a reasonable person;
  • You were not paying adequate attention to where you were going;
  • You were in an area that is restricted to visitors or they are not normally expected to be.

Given the uphill battle you are facing, it is important to take proactive steps to protect your legal right to compensation. Take multiple photographs of the accident scene from various angles to show the hazard and how you got hurt, obtain statements and the contact information of anyone who may have witnessed the event, get immediate medical attention to fully document your injuries and ensure that you are properly treated, and retain skilled legal counsel as early as possible in the process.

Injured on Someone Else’s Property? Speak with a Seasoned Alabama Personal Injury Attorney

If you or a loved one was hurt on the property of another party in Alabama, call M. Adam Jones and Associates for a free, no-obligation consultation. We will thoroughly review your case and advise you of your legal options. Call us today at 334-581-9238 or send us a message through our online contact form.