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Month: June 2014

Fourth of July Fireworks Safety

Fireworks are a staple at Fourth of July celebrations across Texoma. Even with recent rain showers, Wichita Falls and other North Texas communities aren’t out of fire danger. The hot dry temperatures coupled with the city’s dwindling water supply means that even a relatively small fire could have devastating consequences.

As of noon on June 26th, Wichita County Judge Woody Gossom has signed off on a fireworks order that set detailed restrictions on fireworks for the next 50 hours. According to KFDX News Channel Three, the governor has been asked to extend the restrictions through the end of July.

Wichita County Fireworks Restrictions

The use of fireworks in an outdoor environment by any person is restricted, even though Wichita County isn’t banning the sale of fireworks. You’re only going to be allowed to use fireworks, if you’re following certain guidelines.

The guidelines include where you can and cannot discharge fireworks, in addition to safe handling practices. People who are celebrating with fireworks are required to have a variety of fire-extinguishing items on hand in the event of a fire.

Additionally, it will also be necessary to have a person over the age of 18 acting as a spotter for potential fires. No fireworks are to be used during periods of high wind, which is 20 miles per hour or greater.

Notifying First Responders Ahead of Time

Finally, any business owner or individual allowing others to ignite fireworks on their premises, with or without charge, must register the activity with the Wichita County Sheriff and their local volunteer fire department at least 12 hours before the activity begins.First responders will take contact information including address and the name and information for the person responsible.

If you plan on using fireworks this Fourth of July, makes sure you’re fully capable of complying with all of the safety guidelines in place. Citizens can read a detailed description of the guidelines at Texoma’s Homepage.

Criminal Charges

Violation of any of these restrictions can result in a Class C Misdemeanor, which can include a fine up to $500. In addition to the criminal charge, offenders should know that if they violate the restrictions and somebody gets injured or suffers some type of property damage, they can be held liable for damages. The team at the Altman Legal Group wishes everybody a safe and happy Fourth of July holiday. For more information on fire damage cases, visit our website or call us at 940-761-4000.

Representing Victims And Families
since 1982

Our attorneys are happy to accommodate difficult schedules. We can meet you in the early morning or late afternoon hours.

We can even schedule appointments on the weekends. We are also available to meet you at home or in the hospital if you do not have transportation, or if your injury doesn’t allow you to travel.

What We Offer Clients And Their Loved Ones:

Initial consultations on personal injury cases are always free.
You do not pay us unless we win your case on personal injury cases.
We`re available to answer your legal questions.
We can be an advocate for your loved ones.
Help provide families with resources and advice.
Resolve automobile property damage claims.
Help you find a doctor, even if you don`t have insurance.
We can deal with the insurance companies.

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Deadly Farming Incident near Cyril, Oklahoma

A few weeks ago, a farming incident took the life of an Oklahoma man. Floyd “Junior” Etter Jr., 56-years-old, was run over by a combine while moisture testing the ground. Etter was well known in the community for helping others. KSWO News Channel Seven reports that this incident underscores just how dangerous farm work can be. The need for safety education and training can’t be overstated when farmers and farm workers are utilizing large pieces of heavy machinery on a daily basis.

U.S. Agricultural Safety Statistics

  • In 2010, approximately 1,823,000 full-time workers were employed in production agriculture.
  • In 2009, an estimated 1.03 million children and young adults under the age of 20 resided on farms.
  • About half of those performed farm work.
  • In 2010, 476 farmers and farm workers died due to work-related injury.
  • The fatality rate for farmers and farm workers is 26.1 deaths per 100,000 workers.
  • Tractor overturns were the leading cause of death for farmers and farm workers.
  • The leading cause of fatal injuries to children and young adults under the age of 20 involved machinery.
  • Every day, approximately 243 farm workers suffer a lost-work-time injury.
  • Five percent of those injuries result in permanent impairment.

Heavy Equipment Safety Concerns

Tractors, combines and other large pieces of heavy farming equipment represent the largest potential danger to farm workers and ranchers. It’s important to make sure everybody who is working with and around heavy machinery is properly trained in safety procedures and proper use.

Since most farms and ranches across Texoma are family-run operations, particular attention should be paid when children and youth farm workers are handling, operating and working around large pieces of machinery.

Farming Accidents in Texoma

If you or a loved one has been injured in a farming accident, contact an experienced personal injury attorney as soon as possible. Even if your farm or ranch is insured, contact a lawyer. Insurance companies aren’t always looking out for the best interest of the policy holder.

Families may be facing lost wages, medical bills, rehabilitation costs and other expenses caused by a farm accident. Unlike many other industries, when farm works needs to be done, it waits for nobody.

After a farming accident, an attorney can help make sure you get the compensation you deserve, so you can get back to your regular life. The team at the Altman Legal Group sends their deepest condolences to the family members and friends of Mr. Etter.

Representing Victims And Families
since 1982

Our attorneys are happy to accommodate difficult schedules. We can meet you in the early morning or late afternoon hours.

We can even schedule appointments on the weekends. We are also available to meet you at home or in the hospital if you do not have transportation, or if your injury doesn’t allow you to travel.

What We Offer Clients And Their Loved Ones:

Initial consultations on personal injury cases are always free.
You do not pay us unless we win your case on personal injury cases.
We`re available to answer your legal questions.
We can be an advocate for your loved ones.
Help provide families with resources and advice.
Resolve automobile property damage claims.
Help you find a doctor, even if you don`t have insurance.
We can deal with the insurance companies.

Free Consultation

Over 40 Years of Experience

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Deadly Train Crash on FM 369

Last Friday afternoon, a fatal train-versus-car wreck happened on FM 369. The incident, which happened near Old Iowa Park Road, took the life of a 91-year-old Holliday resident. Apparently, Helen Havins’ car was stuck between two crossing gates.

Although the wreck is still under investigation, it appears as though she tried to move her vehicle forwards and in reverse prior to the collision. According to KFDX News Channel Three, the train struck her car with such force that the trunk flew over 100 feet from the scene. Officials with Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railway said that the crossing arms, lights and bells were in working order at the time of the wreck.

Ongoing Investigation

The train’s engine did have video recording equipment, so Burlington Northern and local law enforcement officials will be reviewing the footage to determine if this tragic wreck could have been prevented. Trooper Tony Fulton was quick to point out that trains are large and heavy, and they can’t stop on a dime.

Very few details have been released about how Havins ended up between the two crossing arms, and this collision is still under investigation with both the railway company and local authorities.

Railroad Crashes in Texas and Oklahoma

Texas has more railroad-vehicle intersections than any other state. In the three years prior to 2012, there were 822 railroad-crossing incidents, and Texas accounted for almost 10 percent of all railroad crossing accidents across the country.

In March, we reported on an incident that took the life of a pedestrian in Oklahoma. The victim, 58-year-old James Littleton, was struck and killed by a Union Pacific Train. Very few details were released about the crash which took the life of a Tushka, Oklahoma man.

In 2012, a train crash in Midland, Texas took four lives, when a tractor trailer carrying veterans and their families was struck during a parade.

After a Crash Involving a Train

Any time a pedestrian or passenger vehicle occupant gets killed by a train, an in-depth investigation needs to be conducted. It’s absolutely critical to determine the exact causes of train crashes, so that potentially similar incidents can be prevented in the future. It’s also necessary to determine if negligence played a part in the crash or if crossing safety equipment malfunctioned.

The team at the Altman Legal Group sends their deepest condolences to the family members and friends of Helen Havins.

Representing Victims And Families
since 1982

Our attorneys are happy to accommodate difficult schedules. We can meet you in the early morning or late afternoon hours.

We can even schedule appointments on the weekends. We are also available to meet you at home or in the hospital if you do not have transportation, or if your injury doesn’t allow you to travel.

What We Offer Clients And Their Loved Ones:

Initial consultations on personal injury cases are always free.
You do not pay us unless we win your case on personal injury cases.
We`re available to answer your legal questions.
We can be an advocate for your loved ones.
Help provide families with resources and advice.
Resolve automobile property damage claims.
Help you find a doctor, even if you don`t have insurance.
We can deal with the insurance companies.

Free Consultation

Over 40 Years of Experience

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Fatal Wreck on Highway 287

Last week, a fatal wreck involving one vehicle happened on Highway 287. According to KFDX News Channel Three, the crash happened between Fisher Road and Hammon Road.

A white Chevy SUV traveling northbound on 287 crashed into a light pole and concrete divider after apparently losing control. First responders were swiftly on the scene. The passenger was pronounced dead on the scene, and the driver was airlifted to the 11th Street Emergency Room of United Regional Hospital.

Fatal Texoma Wreck Still Under Investigation

At this time, it’s still unclear why or how the driver, 39-year-old Michelle Doyle, lost control of the vehicle. Could it have been a case of distracted driving? Were drugs or alcohol factors in this wreck?

The deceased passenger has been identified as 35-year-old Richard Hines. Doyle and Hines were both residents of Haltom City, Texas. The driver was treated for unknown injuries, but they were described as serious. KFDX News also reports that the cause of this deadly wreck is still under investigation.

The Dangers of Distracted Driving

Although the cause of this crash hasn’t been determined yet, it’s not uncommon for distracted driving to be a factor in daytime one-vehicle wrecks. Any time a driver takes his or her attention away from the roadway, lives are put at risk.

Everybody knows that texting-while-driving is a dangerous behavior behind the wheel, but irresponsible drivers across Texoma engage in a variety of other distracted behaviors too. Anytime your cognitive, physical or visual attention is taken away from the task of driving, you’re distracted. Day dreaming, applying makeup, adjusting GPS machines and even eating fast food can all be types of distracted driving.

Wrongful Death Cases in North Texas

In cases where a driver’s negligent, reckless or careless behavior causes the death of a passenger, victim’s family members may be able to file a wrongful death lawsuit.

Although no amount of money can replace your loved one, a wrongful death lawsuit can help families who are facing extensive medical bills, funeral expenses and a loss of future earnings.

If you have lost a loved one in a car accident, contact the skilled team at the Altman Legal Group at 940-761-4000 for a free consultation. An experienced wrongful death attorney can be your family’s advocate during this difficult time. The team at the Altman Legal Group sends their deepest condolences to the family members and friends of Richard Hines.

Representing Victims And Families
since 1982

Our attorneys are happy to accommodate difficult schedules. We can meet you in the early morning or late afternoon hours.

We can even schedule appointments on the weekends. We are also available to meet you at home or in the hospital if you do not have transportation, or if your injury doesn’t allow you to travel.

What We Offer Clients And Their Loved Ones:

Initial consultations on personal injury cases are always free.
You do not pay us unless we win your case on personal injury cases.
We`re available to answer your legal questions.
We can be an advocate for your loved ones.
Help provide families with resources and advice.
Resolve automobile property damage claims.
Help you find a doctor, even if you don`t have insurance.
We can deal with the insurance companies.

Free Consultation

Over 40 Years of Experience

Contact Form

City Worker in Lawton Attacked by Dogs

Earlier this week, a city worker in Lawton was attacked by dogs. The city water employee, whose name hasn’t been released, was in the middle of restoring water to a home on Southwest Park Avenue when two pit bulls viciously attacked him.

According to KSWO News Channel Seven, he suffered from significant injuries to his head, arms and legs, but was able to get free of the dogs. First responders were swiftly on the scene, and he was rushed to the hospital. There’s no word on his current condition, but KSWO News did report that he was treated and released from the hospital.

Dogs Seized by Animal Control

No information has been released on how these dogs were able to attack this city employee. Were they let loose in a yard he was working in? Did they break out of a poorly-fenced in area or were they turned out off-leash to roam freely? Thankfully, the animals were seized by the animal control department.

The owner was apparently aware that at least one of the dogs has a history of aggression and has been known to bite. She reportedly told KSWO News that she did intend to get her dogs back, when and if they were going to be released by the city. Currently, there’s no word on the situation.

Dog Bite Injuries

Dog bite injuries can leave victims with severe lacerations, infections and painful scar tissue. Especially when bites to the face occur, it may be necessary to go through multiple reconstructive plastic surgeries.Dog attack victims might be facing a variety of stitches and staples to close lacerations.

In addition to the physical aftermath of a dog attack, victims frequently suffer from emotional and mental pain and suffering. Getting viciously attacked by what should be “man’s best friend” is a traumatic experience, and it can leave victims with a new-found fear of dogs, mistrust of friendly animals and painful emotional scars.

After a Dog Attack in Texas or Oklahoma

Victims of dog attacks are often facing expensive medical bills, lost wages and lengthy recovery periods, and dog bite cases can be incredibly complex.

In addition to dealing with negligent pet owners, it is often necessary to make a claim against their homeowner’s insurance policy. If you or your loved one has been attacked by a dog, contact the experienced team at the Altman Legal Group at 580-353-4878 for a free consultation today.

Representing Victims And Families
since 1982

Our attorneys are happy to accommodate difficult schedules. We can meet you in the early morning or late afternoon hours.

We can even schedule appointments on the weekends. We are also available to meet you at home or in the hospital if you do not have transportation, or if your injury doesn’t allow you to travel.

What We Offer Clients And Their Loved Ones:

Initial consultations on personal injury cases are always free.
You do not pay us unless we win your case on personal injury cases.
We`re available to answer your legal questions.
We can be an advocate for your loved ones.
Help provide families with resources and advice.
Resolve automobile property damage claims.
Help you find a doctor, even if you don`t have insurance.
We can deal with the insurance companies.

Free Consultation

Over 40 Years of Experience

Contact Form

Fatal Wreck Near Odell Still Under Investigation

A fatal wreck that happened last week, involving a married couple, is still under investigation. The crash happened near Odell in Willbarger County. According to KFDX News Channel Three, this two-car wreck involved drivers who were actually newlyweds. For currently unknown reasons, their cars collided head on. Sadly, they were both pronounced dead on the scene. The newlyweds were driving in separate vehicles on Country Road 87 North and FM 2397. Apparently, the wreck happened at the crest of a hill. Nicolas Cruz, 31 years old, was in a 1990 Mazda pickup truck and 26-year-old Kristina Munoz was in a 1999 Saturn.

The wreck happened near an egg farm, which they both worked at. Very little information has been released about the cause of this crash, which is still under investigation. Initial reports indicate that roadway layout may have been a factor in this wreck. Tony Fulton, a Trooper with the Department of Public Safety, said that the road was very narrow with no markings where the crash occurred. Investigators are still trying to determine exactly what happened, and whether or not one or both of the drivers could have been driving too close to the center of the road. Munoz is survived by three children.

U.S. Motor Vehicle Crash Facts

  • Over 30,000 people are killed in motor vehicle wrecks each year in the U.S.
  • Car crashes are the leading killer of children, teens and young adults (ages five to 34).
  • In 2005, in addition to the impact on victims’ families and friends, motor vehicle wreck costs totaled $41 billion in medical and work loss costs.

Texas Motor Vehicle Crash Costs

  • Crash-related death costs in Texas total $3.5 billion annually.
  • $34 million of the $3.5 billion is attributed to medical costs.
  • $3.47 billion is attributed to work loss costs.

Texas comes in right behind California ($4.16 billion in crash-related costs) as the state with the second highest crash-related medical and work loss costs. Since these numbers only measure the financial impact of crashes, it’s nearly impossible to imagine or calculate the emotional and personal loss victims’ families and friends go through. If poor-roadway layout was a contributing factor in this crash, hopefully this tragic wreck will shed some light on areas and roads in North Texas that can be made safer for motorists. The team at the Altman Legal Group sends their deepest condolences to the family members and friends of Nicolas Cruz and Kristina Munoz.

Representing Victims And Families
since 1982

Our attorneys are happy to accommodate difficult schedules. We can meet you in the early morning or late afternoon hours.

We can even schedule appointments on the weekends. We are also available to meet you at home or in the hospital if you do not have transportation, or if your injury doesn’t allow you to travel.

What We Offer Clients And Their Loved Ones:

Initial consultations on personal injury cases are always free.
You do not pay us unless we win your case on personal injury cases.
We`re available to answer your legal questions.
We can be an advocate for your loved ones.
Help provide families with resources and advice.
Resolve automobile property damage claims.
Help you find a doctor, even if you don`t have insurance.
We can deal with the insurance companies.

Free Consultation

Over 40 Years of Experience

Contact Form

Insurance Assistance Event for Oklahoma Tornado Survivors

John Doak, the Oklahoma Insurance Commissioner, is planning a consumer assistance event for tornado victims who still have unresolved claims. This Tuesday evening event is going to take place at Westmoore High School’s lecture hall. According to KSWO News Channel Seven, almost 100,000 insurance claims have been filed since last year’s tornadoes. So far, payments have topped $1.1 billion. Although most residents have already settled their claims, many families are still dealing with their insurance companies.

Answering Questions and Assisting Consumers

Doak is hoping that this forum will help to get the remainder of unresolved claims moving along. A variety of representatives will be on hand to answer questions. There will be representatives from the Oklahoma Insurance Department’s Consumer Assistance Office, legal help, an anti-fraud department and Medicare assistance. According to Doak, the claims that haven’t yet been settled are going to be some of the most difficult cases to resolve. If you’re unable to make it to this event or you still have questions, it may be helpful to speak with a personal injury attorney who has experience dealing with insurance companies.

May 20, 2013

On the afternoon of May 20, 2013, an EF5 tornado swept through the town of Moore, Oklahoma. This tornado was part of a larger system that sent at least five other tornadoes across central Oklahoma the day before. In Moore, 51 people lost their lives and at least 230 others were injured. The tornado was over a mile wide and left nothing but devastation in its wake. More than 56,000 tons of debris had to be removed from the damaged areas in the months after the tornado struck.

Is Your Insurance Company Acting in Good Faith?

If you’re still going back and forth with your insurance company, and you suspect they aren’t acting in good faith, you need to speak with an experienced attorney as soon as possible. Insurance companies are required by law to treat their policy holders fairly. Unfortunately, that’s not always the case. It’s not uncommon to hear about some very well known insurance companies denying and delaying claims to avoid paying on claims or to wear down policy holders. If your insurance company is denying or delaying payments without just cause, contact the skilled team at the Altman Legal Group for a free consultation. Our lawyers have extensive insurance litigation experience. Our Lawton, Oklahoma office can be reached at 580-353-4878.

Representing Victims And Families
since 1982

Our attorneys are happy to accommodate difficult schedules. We can meet you in the early morning or late afternoon hours.

We can even schedule appointments on the weekends. We are also available to meet you at home or in the hospital if you do not have transportation, or if your injury doesn’t allow you to travel.

What We Offer Clients And Their Loved Ones:

Initial consultations on personal injury cases are always free.
You do not pay us unless we win your case on personal injury cases.
We`re available to answer your legal questions.
We can be an advocate for your loved ones.
Help provide families with resources and advice.
Resolve automobile property damage claims.
Help you find a doctor, even if you don`t have insurance.
We can deal with the insurance companies.

Free Consultation

Over 40 Years of Experience

Contact Form

Head-on Collision near Lake Arrowhead

On Monday afternoon, a head-on collision sent one person to the hospital. According to KFDX News Channel Three, the wreck happened near Lake Arrowhead, close to the intersection of 1954 and 2606, at about 3:15 p.m. Apparently, the driver of a Hyundai passed a pickup truck in a no-passing area of the roadway. The driver then struck a Honda head on. The driver of the Honda was taken to United Regional Hospital for treatment of injuries, which were initially described as non-life threatening. There’s no word on the victim’s current condition or the extent of injuries involved. Authorities do suspect that drugs or alcohol could have been factors in this crash, which is likely still under investigation.

Drunk Driving Crashes in America

Each day, nearly 30 people across the U.S. die in crashes involving impaired drivers. When motorists drink and get behind the wheel, they put everybody on the roadway at great risk. Officials with The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) want drivers to know that buzzed driving is drunk driving too. In some cases, one drink can be one drink too many. If you’ve been drinking or you plan on drinking, make plans to get a safe ride home.

Just the Facts on Drunk Driving

  • Drunk driving kills over 10,000 people each year.
  • In 2012, on average, one person was killed every 51 minutes in a drunk driving crash.
  • One in three traffic fatalities happen in alcohol-impaired crashes.
  • Nearly one-third of crash deaths involve a drunk driver.
  • The annual cost of drunk-driving crashes totals more than $51 billion.

After a Wreck Involving an Impaired Driver

If you or a loved one has been injured by an impaired driver, contact an experienced personal injury lawyer as soon as possible. Cases involving criminal charges can be complicated. A skilled personal injury attorney can stay abreast of investigative details, legal developments and other issues that will be pertinent to your case. An attorney can even deal with your pushy insurance company too, to make sure that you get the compensation you deserve after an injury. If you’ve been injured by a drunk driver, you shouldn’t have to worry about how you’re going to pay for your medical bills. Let an experienced car accident lawyer handle the details. The team at the Altman Legal Group wishes the victim a speedy a full recovery.

Representing Victims And Families
since 1982

Our attorneys are happy to accommodate difficult schedules. We can meet you in the early morning or late afternoon hours.

We can even schedule appointments on the weekends. We are also available to meet you at home or in the hospital if you do not have transportation, or if your injury doesn’t allow you to travel.

What We Offer Clients And Their Loved Ones:

Initial consultations on personal injury cases are always free.
You do not pay us unless we win your case on personal injury cases.
We`re available to answer your legal questions.
We can be an advocate for your loved ones.
Help provide families with resources and advice.
Resolve automobile property damage claims.
Help you find a doctor, even if you don`t have insurance.
We can deal with the insurance companies.

Free Consultation

Over 40 Years of Experience

Contact Form