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Leading Tampa Bay personal injury attorneys underscore the importance of wearing a seatbelt

Click It or Ticket: The National Seat Belt Enforcement Campaign Begins May 23

Florida drivers know that buckling up is the law. Yet fatal crashes continue to increase, as violators fail to put on their seatbelt when driving or riding in a vehicle. While statistics show that drivers and passengers have been buckling up more consistently during daytime hours, evening and night time fatal crashes between the hours of 6 pm and 5:59 am have continued to increase.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Association (NHTSA) has instituted a national seatbelt enforcement mobilization period beginning May 23rd and ending June 5th, 2016. The mobilization was created to enforce seat belt laws 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Local law enforcement agencies will be joining forces and patrolling “Coast to Coast” on major interstates including I-10, I-40, I-70, and I-80. The objective of the patrol is to remind citizens that law enforcement’s priority is safety.

The Click It or Ticket campaign highlights key issues in traffic safety. Research conducted by the NHTSA showed, while 88.5 percent of passenger vehicle occupants buckled up in 2015, almost 50 percent of occupants of fatal crashes nationwide are not restrained. Even more tragic, in some states the rate is as high as 70 percent unrestrained in fatal crashes. These startling statistics are the key reason the enforcement mobilization period was formed.

“Buckling up is one of the easiest ways to put your life out of danger’s way,” remarked attorney Jennifer Burns, “No one regrets putting on their seatbelt.” Jennifer Burns is one of Tampa Bay’s foremost personal injury attorneys, handling car accident claims with tenacity and compassion.

Law enforcement agencies will issue citations to all seatbelt law violators pulled over during the Click it or Ticket time period. Local police are maintaining a zero-tolerance policy for those without seatbelts. For more information on the NHTSA’s Click It or Ticket campaign please visit


Clearwater Personal Injury Lawyer Jennifer Burns Endorses Consistent Helmet Use Following Teen Skateboarding Death

Personal injury attorney Jennifer Burns, of Tampa Bay's leading injury law firm of Carlson Meissner Hart & Hayslett P.A., cautions Tampa Bay sports enthusiasts that failure to wear protective gear while skateboarding can lead to serious injury, broken bones, traumatic brain injuries and even death.

The February 1, 2015 death of St. Petersburg, Florida teen Austin Demauro, resulting from a dangerous skateboarding game known as “skitching”, is a stark reminder that skateboarding is a hazardous sport that can yield deadly results if not approached cautiously. The Tampa Bay Times reported that Demauro was not wearing a helmet when he latched onto the back of a friend’s moving car while riding his skateboard. After losing control of the skateboard, Demauro fell and hit his head on the pavement, dying from his injuries. 

According the National Safety Counsel, more than 78,000 people sought care in emergency rooms in 2011 alone, as a result of skateboarding injuries. More than half of the injured skateboarders were under the age of 15. indicates that skateboarding injuries often occur when the skateboarder loses balance, and usually involve the wrist, ankle or face. 

Safe Kids Worldwide, a global organization dedicated to preventing injuries in children, recommends several measures skateboarders should take to protect themselves against injury and death, including wearing a helmet, wrist guards, knee pads, elbow pads and a mouth guard; riding on smooth, dry surfaces located in a well-lit area away from traffic; checking skateboards for problems before each use; and crouching down when losing balance to minimize the impact of a fall.

Attorney Jennifer Burns reminds sports enthusiasts that, “Skateboarding can be a fun way to burn calories while increasing balance and coordination. While the sport is not without risk, injuries can be avoided or minimized by following the advice of leading safety organizations, especially the recommendation to wear a helmet 100% of the time.”

Attorney Jennifer Burns helps skateboarders, bikers and other sports enthusiasts who are injured as a result of another person’s negligence to evaluate the merits of their case and develop an effective strategy for pursuing compensation under Florida’s personal injury laws. 

This information is provided for educational purposes only and does not constitute legal advice.

***Jennifer-A-Burns***At the Law Offices of Carlson, Meissner, Hart & Hayslett, P.A. we believe in active participation and giving back to the communities in which we live and work.

1969 Ford Good Humor Ice cream Truck

During the summer, the ringing of the bell along streets in many American towns and cities meant one thing--the Good Humor Ice Cream Truck. It all began in 1920, when Ohio ice cream parlor owner Harry Burt followed his son’s suggestion and put chocolate coated ice cream on a stick. Before long, Burt had a fleet of a dozen trucks making door-to-door deliveries of his new Good Humor ice cream products.

The fleet of Good Humor trucks saw rapid expansion during the 1950’s and 1960’s. One of the trucks that were part of that explosive growth period was this 1969 Ford ice cream truck, which was originally placed in service delivering Good Humor Ice Cream to neighborhoods in Boston, Massachusetts. When the Good Humor Company stopped using trucks to sell ice cream in 1978, the distributor restored and warehoused this rare surviving vehicle. It was purchased years later by a resident of Hull, Massachusetts whose original intention was to let his son start a business. The son soon lost interest, and the truck was used to cater events for several summer seasons. The last event he catered from the vehicle was associated with the 2004 Democratic National Convention in Boston.

Paul Meissner purchased this vehicle in 2004 and it has appeared ever since at various fund raising and charitable events. The Law Firm of Carlson & Meissner donates all of the ice cream distributed at these events.