Bayou Corne Sinkhole: A Continuous Cause of Danger

On August 3, 2012, a sinkhole was discovered in northern Assumption Parish in Louisiana, which resulted to the evacuation of about 350 residents living nearby. The sinkhole, named the Bayou Corne, resulted from an underground salt dome cavern that suddenly collapsed.

The site of the collapse, known as Napoleonville Dome, is owned by Occidental Chemical Corporation and is under lease to Texas Brine Co., a petrochemical company that specializes in injection mining. On August 2013 the sinkhole was found to have expanded to 25 acres (10 ha), from just 15 acres (6.1 ha) in May of the same year.

Residents have already been forced to evacuate their homes, without any clue as to when things will be resolved. Despite the $875 a week that Texas Brine Co. has been paying them, affected residents have decided to file a class action lawsuit against the involved companies for all the harm and danger which the situation continues to cause them.

Read More

What Exactly is the Obagi Blue Peel?

Everyone wants smooth, blemish-free skin, but for most people that is a thing of the past, back when one was very young. As one ages and the skin gets exposed to the elements, signs of wear and tear will inevitably emerge, most especially on the face. To counteract the worst of these signs, many people turn to skin treatments such as the Obagi Blue Peel.

The Obagi Blue Peel is a product developed by Obagi Medical Products, Inc. for in-clinic use. It is essentially a chemical peel which must be administered by a dermatologist, and can be used not only on the face, but most areas of the body. Obagi Blue Peel may be used to remove blemishes and treat acne as well as encourage the development of new skin cells by removing old, damaged ones.

The primary component of Obagi Blue Peel is 15% to 20% trichloroacetic acid (TCA), which acts on damaged cells. The blue component is tinted Glycerine, which serves as a guide for the physician in controlling the depth and evenness of the application. It is applied in layers and the procedure may take about 15 minutes, depending on the necessary number of layers. A slight bluish tinge will remain on the skin after treatment which will fade within 24 hours.

A slight burning sometimes painful sensation may be experienced by the patient, but this can be alleviated by an analgesic taken prior to the procedure and cool packs applied to the treated area after the procedure. It may take one to three sessions to achieve the desired results spaced at 8 week intervals. The Obagi Blue Peel is a medium penetration chemical peel, so it is used for serious skin blemishes. Incorrect use of the product can lead to serious skin damage. The skin will begin to peel after three days and may take up to 10 days before the skin is fully healed. For best results, after-care instructions should be closely followed.

Read More

Choosing a Hairstyle

Women want to have great hair; that’s the truth. Choosing the right hairstyle, therefore, it something that is important in order to make an impact and to feel good. Soft, beach waves may look good on some women, but won’t give much appeal to others. There are many factors that can come into play when choosing a hairstyle: texture, face shape, and facial features play a part in getting the right hairstyle. Making sure your hairstyle fits you is the best way to make heads turn.

First thing is to determine your face shape: round, oval, diamond, long, oval-shaped, heart-shaped, triangular, and square. It is essential to find cuts that compliment the shape of your face. Next, understand the texture of your hair. Having fine hair may prevent you from having blunt bangs, and people with frizzy and course hair may require long lengths to avoid frizz and to weight it down.

The right hairstyle can help in enhancing your favorite features, such as a long neck or beautiful eyes. Choosing the right cut that compliments your features can make you feel confident and good about yourself. Along this line, hair can also help in hiding certain flaws. Also, you should consider how much time and effort you are willing to give to maintain the hairstyle: trimming, blow-drying, and regular haircuts should all be considered if you want to keep your hair in a certain style.

Adding some color or highlights can help in giving hair more oomph, but this can be optional. If you are uneasy with a certain style or would like to try a new one, asking or consulting a hair stylist would be the best way to get professional advice. With the help of a trusted hair stylist, choosing a new style may seem less stressful and more fulfilling. Looking at other people’s hairstyle for inspiration can also inspire you to try a new hairstyle, and above all, make sure your hairstyle is maintainable and does not take too much of your time.

Read More

Factors affecting Permanent Alimony Payments

Alimony, also known as spousal support or spousal maintenance, depending on circumstances, is an aspect of divorce that is often referred to in satires because it generates a quasi-comical response in American audiences. It is something that many people vaguely believe is forever. It may happen that one spouse may agree to continue to support the other spouse for an agreed period of time in a divorce settlement, which would make it spousal support. Otherwise, alimony may be ordered by the court, which would make it spousal maintenance. The trend nowadays, however, is for the courts to award no alimony, or to grant it on a limited basis if it is so warranted.

In Texas, there are two kinds of alimony: temporary and permanent. According to an article found on the website of Woodlands-based law firm BB Law Group PLLC, temporary alimony may be awarded to one spouse while the divorce is ongoing if there is a significant disparity in the financial resources of the spouses, and the requesting spouse can provide proof of necessity. This is to provide the requesting spouse time to adjust to a changed standard of living. Once the divorce is finalized, the temporary alimony ceases.

In some cases, even after the divorce is finalized, the court may order the more affluent spouse to pay spousal maintenance if one of the following factors applies:

  • Conviction of the paying spouse of domestic violence within a two-year period from the date the divorce was first filed
  • The marriage lasted at least 10 years and the requesting spouse does not have the resources to adequately meet basic needs and has custody of a dependent child who needs constant supervision
  • The marriage lasted at least 10 years and the requesting spouse does not have the resources to adequately meet basic needs or the capacity for gainful employment due to lack of employable skills
  • The marriage lasted at least 10 years and the requesting spouse does not have the resources to adequately meet basic needs or the capacity for gainful employment due to a qualified disability
  • The marriage lasted at least 10 years and the requesting spouse has custody of a disabled child

When the requesting spouse qualifies under any of these factors, permanent alimony may be granted. However, except for the last two cases, the payment period will not exceed three years. Under the last scenario, the requesting spouse may be eligible to receive alimony for up to 10 years, depending on the length of the marriage and the duration of the disability.

Read More

Erb’s Palsy and Negligence in Birth Injuries

It may seem inconceivable that a birth injury can still occur in this day and age of modern science and technology, but unfortunately, it does. Statistics indicate that on average 3 newborns sustain some type of birth injury an hour in the US. That’s about 7 for every 1,000 births. Not all of these can be attributed to medical malpractice; being born is an inherently traumatic experience and sometimes it can result in injury, even death. However, some injuries lend themselves more to an interpretation of negligence. One such birth injury is Brachial Plexus Nerve Palsy, otherwise known as Erb’s palsy.

Erb’s palsy is a physical injury to the baby that can only occur during normal delivery. The injury centers on the brachial plexus, a group of nerves located in the area of the neck. Functionally, the brachial plexus has control over hand and arm movements. Injury to these nerves can lead to some numbness and weakness in one arm. Depending on the extent of the physical trauma, Erb’s palsy may also result in total or partial use of one arm temporarily or permanently.

The trauma occurs when the delivery has some complications such as breech birth, abnormally long labor, or a proportionally too-large baby. The website of The Driscoll Firm lists the causes of trauma to include excessive pressure exerted on the shoulder which may stretch the neck too much; alternatively, the injury could be caused by the incorrect use of forceps, which is used to assist delivery. Either way, such an injury may be considered medical malpractice, and may render the delivering physician liable in a personal injury claim.

In most cases, the effects of Erb’s palsy resolve on its own without any treatment within 3 months, but not always. If you or a family member has a child who suffers from Erb’s palsy, and believe it occurred because of negligence on the part of the physician or the hospital staff, than you may be able to get some compensation for it to help in treatment and management of the injury. Consult with an Erb’s palsy lawyer in the area today and find out more.

Read More

Construction Accidents

One would say with little thought that construction accidents are to be expected considering the nature of the work, and it is true that there is a certain element of unavoidable risk. However, there are cases when injury or death could have been avoided if the proper safety rules, regulations and equipment had been observed.

Recent construction accidents that occurred in different parts of the US range from equipment malfunction to falling objects. In the case of the New York City mishap, the crane stopped working in the middle of lifting a 13,500 pound slab of concrete 30 storeys directly above the street. In Oregon, a crane is again involved but this time, its load of trusses shifted, and fell inside the building, crushing one worker and injuring three others, one of whom was in critical condition. In San Francisco, accidents are plaguing the work crew at the Levi Stadium construction site, so far leaving two dead.

Most construction accidents may be considered a safety issue, and a significant number may be construed as resulting from negligence. In the New York case, investigations may reveal a lack of proper maintenance that led to malfunction. If you have been injured in New York due to a machine malfunction at a construction site, a New York construction site attorney may be able to help you recover compensation in your case. Improper securing of the trusses could be the reason for the Oregon incident, while the deaths in San Francisco may be due to improper safety training of the workers.

In other words, as pointed out in an article on the Hach & Rose, LLP website, many of these incidents constitute an unsafe workplace environment. It is mandated by law that employers have a duty of care to provide their workers with a reasonably safe environment to work in. And because the construction industry is risky, employers need to be more conscientious than, say, an office manager. Failure to fulfill this duty may render the employer liable for personal injury claims. If you live in the East Texas area and are a victim to an unsafe work environment, contact a Fort Worth Personal Injury Lawyer today to learn more about your legal options.

Read More

Drunk Driving and Its Effects

Drunk driving is a crime in all states in the US, although there are variations in sanctions, punishments and enforcement. In general, however, it is considered a serious criminal offense. Drunk driving is alternatively referred to as driving while intoxicated (DWI), driving under the influence (DUI), operating a vehicle while under the influence (OVI), or operating while impaired depending on the state.

According to car accident lawyers at Habush Habush & Rottier S.C., whenever a charge of drunk driving is levied, the defendant risks a conviction that may mean a fine, a term of imprisonment, and other impediments to freedom such as an ignition interlock and suspension or revocation of a license. Under some circumstances, the suspension of a driver’s license may only be lifted after a specified period if the driver obtains an SR-22, a special insurance for high risk drivers, and it can be expensive and difficult to obtain.

The most obvious way to avoid the effects of drunk driving is not to drink and drive. In fact, it may not be a good idea to get behind the wheel at all. In some states, a charge of drunk driving may be levied against an intoxicated person who is seated behind the wheel even if the vehicle is parked.

If a charge has already been filed, the next best thing is to get effective legal representation as soon as possible. It is no joke to be convicted of drunk driving, and should be avoided as much as possible. A good defense lawyer familiar with drunk driving laws in the state would be able to mount a plausible defense even if field sobriety tests yield positive results. It is important that no statement or admission is given prior to consulting with the lawyer, as these can be used as evidence against the defendant. If unfortunately there has already been a conviction, it still may not be too late. A good lawyer can find a way to justify appealing the conviction at the state level.

Read More

Cruise Ship Dangers

There are inherent cruise ship dangers that are exacerbated by the failure of those in charge to demand and expect discipline and competence among the staff members. This is generally because most cruise ship workers are not equal or suited to the tasks expected of them, or did not receive adequate training.

Cruise ships have recently dominated the news, unfortunately because a number of them have sunk or crashed, causing injuries to passengers and crew members alike. The most famous of recent ship wrecks was that of the Italian cruise ship Costa Concordia, which sank on January 13, 2012, killing 32 people. It was suspected that Captain Francesco Schettino lost control of the ship when he deviated from the programmed route and ran it aground on Isola del Giglio in Tuscany. The Costa Concordia is currently in the midst of a salvaging project to finally get her out of the water after almost two years half-submerged.

Such dangerous incompetence demonstrated in the Costa Concordia is unfortunately quite common in foreign-registered cruise companies, although not usually so high up in the chain of command. These companies are not under the jurisdiction of the US and are therefore not subject to US safety rules and regulations. This leads to many incidents of

According to the WorkSTEPS website, pre-employment screening is important in determining the functional capability of a potential worker. This will in turn provide the company, or cruise ship, with staff that can competently and safely perform their tasks. In the long run, an efficient and capable pool of employees will translate to significant savings in operations as well as minimize cruise ship dangers that can lead to untoward incidents such as ships running aground. For anyone that has been involved in a cruise ship injury, an attorney from The Louis A. Vucci, PA may be able to provide more information about legal actions you or your family may be able to take.

Read More

Effects of the Gulf Oil Spill

One of the most resonant effects of the Gulf oil spill which occurred more than three years ago is economic. Although not as large as the environmental and health impact, it is something that can be easily quantified. People along the coast which were affected directly by the oil spill lost their homes, employment and/or their source of livelihood, and many are treading water as they struggle to survive the disaster. Many have given up and moved away, while others are hanging on, hoping that they can make a claim for damages from BP, owner operator of the Deepwater Horizon Oil rig which was the source of the spilled oil when it exploded.

Many of those who are hanging on are those that have sunk money into the place by buying property or establishing businesses, or both. Those with commercial or business interests in the area find themselves holding the bag in the aftermath of the oil spill, and are just now starting to pick up the threads of normal operations and some have even started planning for the future.

Many consider ongoing claims against BP for economic losses due to the disaster as part of their recovery plan, but it may not be as simple as it used to be. BP has cried foul against some claims which they allege are fraudulent, causing delays in payouts for both legitimate and fraudulent claims. This new wrinkle can have a serious effect on companies which are struggling to make ends meet, let alone do any realistic financial planning.

It is possible that the mood of economic uncertainty in the area could persist for long time, and investors remain cautious. Property values in the immediate area have sunk by about 15%, and they are forecast to sink another 20% before it starts to get better. By then it may be too late.

Read More