January 2012 Archives

January 16, 2012

Cruise Ship Crashes Off of Tuscany Coast Near Italy


The cruise ship Costa Concordia with passengers and crew of over 4,000 crashed into a rocky reef because the vessel was 2.5 miles off course on friday the 13th, 2012. The island coast of Giglio is known for its rocky sea floor. Six people were killed, twenty were seriously injured and numerous others were unaccounted for. Because the size of the gash of over 160', the ship must have been moving pretty fast in the water at the time of the disaster.120114092333_Costa_Concordia.jpg
Carnival Corp., a U.S.-based cruise giant,is the parent company who owns the company that caused the accident, Costa Cruises. This is not the first time that this company was involved in a deadly maritime accident. In 2010, the Costa Europa crashed into a pier in Egypt killing three crew members.
Some important questions need to be answered: why was the ship so close to the shore? why was the ship 2.5 miles off course? was the captain eating in the dining room or was he on the bridge? if he was on the bridge, what was he thinking? how fast was the ship moving? why didnt the captain, Francesco Schettino, call in a "mayday" at the time of the incident? why did the crew members tell passengers that everything was fine and there was no danger until the ship started turning over on its side? did the delay make use of some of the lifeboats impossible? why wasn't the evacuation organized? why were the instructions from the crew contradictory?

There were about 1,000 Italians,500 Germans, 100 French, 126 Americans and other passengers on board at the time plus 1,000 crew members. Some of the passengers told of their account. Mike van Dijk said that he had to scream at the controllers in order to release the lifeboats. Valerie Ananias from Los Angeles told of a couple handing them their baby during all of the frantic confusion. She said that she thought they were going to die at four different times.

Anyone on the ship can make a claim under maritime law for any damages that they received as a result of the accident,either as a passenger or a crew member. The owner of the ship in addition to the owner of the cruise line will be responsible for those damages. Damages may include wrongful death for the families who lost loved ones;or for personal injuries for those who survived the disaster. These damages may include pain and suffering, medical bills , emotional distress, loss of income, loss of the cost of the cruise, any permanent injuries. Because Carnival Corp. is a U.S. corporation, suit may be filed in the United States, if required.

Don't be fooled into hiring an attorney who claims to be an expert in personal injury and death cases. Research their track record and compare it to ours. We have been handling these type of cases for over 36 years and this is all we do. The law offices of Paul Snow has handled numerous maritime cases and has a license from the U.S.Coast Guard. We know these type of cases backwards and forwards. You can call us at 601-969-1977 or contact us online to ask any questions that you may have FREE of charge. WE do not charge any attorney fee unless and until we recover for you. If you were involved in this disaster or know someone who was and want to discuss the case, call now before it is too late. The insurance company for the cruise line hopes you don't call us, we hope you do. We are here to help you and protect your rights.

January 9, 2012

Motorhome Blowout Causes Accident In Forrest County, Mississippi


Two people have died and numerous people injured when the RV they were riding in had a front tire blow-out causing the RV to go out of control run off of I-59 and hit a tree; two people were ejected from the RV. Mr. Alfred Holt Jr. of Ga. was driving the RV at the time of the accident and was killed in the accident along with Darryl Parker. Ten other passengers were injured in the crash and taken to Forrest general hospital in Hattiesburg,MS. Solomon Brannan owns the motorhome.

Lets look at the tire first. The tire blew out for a reason: was it defectively made? was it put on improperly by a local mechanic? was it worn down so much that it should have been replaced before the trip started? These are questions that need to be answered. IF the tire were defectively made, then a claim could be made by everyone in the vehicle against the maker of the tire for a defective product. This is called product liability.

IF the tire was not defective, then we need to look at who serviced the tire last. If the local mechanic's shop failed to put the nuts back on the tire properly or put too much air or not enough air in the tire, then they may be liable for the accident.

IF the tire was not defective,nor any improper handling by the tire shop, then we need to look to see if the tire was worn down so much that it should not have been used on the trip. The owner should have known whether the tire was in good or bad shape. If in bad shape, the owner should have either told the driver to replace the tire or had the tire replaced before the trip was made. If the owner told the driver about the bad tire and the driver decided not to have the tire replaced, then the driver may bear some responsibility. Also, the driver should have been properly instructed in how to properly operate the RV by the owner before leaving on the trip. These on complicated machines that need experience and know-how to operate safely.

So, a claim may be made against the owner and/or the driver. Since the driver was driving the RV with permission of the owner, then the owner's insurance company should apply to the accident; but, because there are some many victims, it may be on a first come, first served basis.

Because this accident happened in MS, a Mississippi Accident Injury Attorney should be consulted to go over all of your rights. Our law firm has been handling accident cases for over 36 years. This is all we do. Our track record speaks for itself. Check it out for yourself.

If you would like a free consultation to discuss your accident case, call 601-969-1977 now or contact us online. Paul Snow handles all types of cases involving serious injury and death including RV accidents, car accidents, truck accidents, motorcycle accidents and accidents from defective products. We do not charge any attorney fees unless we recover for you.paul snow.jpg