Posts Tagged ‘lawsuit’

Cashing In on Paul Walker

Wednesday, September 30th, 2015

More trouble for VW.

And yet he’s still making more money than you:

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This case is similar to those against Asiana and Boeing for Flight 214, in that seat belt design might have played a very small role. Perhaps these seat belts could have been designed better, I don’t know. Perhaps we’ll find out after trial or, more likely, this case will settle for a couple million and we’ll never hear about it again…

Press Release: “Asiana suit dismissal vindicates firefighters’ ‘heroic efforts’ in tragic crash, Dennis Herrera says”

Friday, August 7th, 2015

Just released, see below.

I don’t know. The NTSB weighed in and the SFFD certainly DID NOT get an A+ grade, to say the least:

“The overall triage process in this mass casualty incident was effective with the exception of the failure of responders to verify their visual assessments of the condition of passenger 41E.

The San Francisco Fire Department’s aircraft rescue and firefighting staffing level was instrumental in the department’s ability to conduct a successful interior fire attack and successfully rescue five passengers who were unable to self-evacuate amid rapidly deteriorating cabin conditions.

Although no additional injuries or loss of life were attributed to the fire attack supervisor’s lack of aircraft rescue and firefighting (ARFF) knowledge and training, the decisions and assumptions he made demonstrate the potential strategic and tactical challenges associated with having non-ARFF trained personnel in positions of command at an airplane accident.

Although some of the communications difficulties encountered during the emergency response, including the lack of radio interoperability, have been remedied, others, such as the breakdown in communications between the airport and city dispatch centers, should be addressed.

The Alert 3 section of the San Francisco International Airport’s emergency procedures manual was not sufficiently robust to anticipate and prevent the problems that occurred in the accident response.”

Here’s some more on Flight 214 from San Francisco Magazine. Some quotes in there from SFFD personnel appeared to show a bit of self deception, IMO.

And there’s this, from the San Jose Mercury News:

San Francisco’s emergency personnel also were criticized. While praising firefighters for rescuing several passengers from the burning wreckage and having more than the required number of personnel on hand, the report said “the arriving incident commander placed an officer in charge of the fire attack” who hadn’t been properly trained. The responders also had communication problems, including being unable “to speak directly with units from the airport on a common radio frequency” and didn’t rush medical buses to the scene, which “delayed the arrival of backboards to treat seriously injured passengers.” In addition, the report said airport emergency officials in general lack policies “for ensuring the safety of passengers and crew at risk of being struck or rolled over by a vehicle” during rescue operations. During the chaotic initial response to the Asiana crash, two firetrucks ran over one of the teenage passengers lying outside the plane. The San Mateo County coroner ruled the girl was alive when she was hit, but the San Francisco Fire Department disputes that finding.

Obviously, this was an aircraft accident that involved pilot error, as most do. Equally obviously, some of the problems on that day showed that the SFFD wasn’t training properly, realistically.

All right, here’s the release:

“Asiana suit dismissal vindicates firefighters’ ‘heroic efforts’ in tragic crash, Herrera says. City Attorney adds, ‘Our hearts go out to the parents of Ye Ming Yuan and to all the surviving loved ones of the three who lost their lives’ in 2013’s Asiana tragedy

SAN FRANCISCO (Aug. 7, 2015) — Parents of the 16-year-old passenger who was ejected and killed in the crash of Asiana Flight 214 on July 6, 2013 dismissed their civil lawsuit against the City and County of San Francisco today. Neither the plaintiffs nor their attorneys appear to have issued a public statement accompanying their dismissal, which was filed in U.S. District Court this afternoon.

City Attorney Dennis Herrera issued the following statement in response:

“Our hearts go out to the parents of Ye Ming Yuan and to all the surviving loved ones of the three who lost their lives in the tragic crash of Asiana Flight 214. We’re grateful for a dismissal that will spare everyone involved the added heartache and costs of litigation, which we believed from the beginning to be without legal merit.
“As we remember those who lost their lives in the Asiana crash, I hope we acknowledge, too, the heroic efforts of San Francisco’s firefighters and police who saved hundreds of lives that day. With thousands of gallons of venting jet fuel threatening unimaginable calamity, our firefighters initiated a daring interior search-and-rescue that within minutes extricated trapped passengers, and moved them safely to medical triage. In the face of great danger to their own lives, our emergency responders showed heroism and selflessness that day. They deserve our honor and gratitude.”

The National Transportation Safety Board determined that the crash of Asiana flight 214 was caused by the Asiana flight crew’s mismanagement in approaching and inadequately monitoring the airspeed of the Boeing 777 on its approach to San Francisco International Airport, according to the NTSB’s June 24, 2014 announcement. The NTSB also found that the flight crew’s misunderstanding of the autothrottle and autopilot flight director systems contributed to the tragedy.

On July 3, 2014, NTSB Member Mark R. Rosekind issued a concurrent statement that praised San Francisco’s first responders: “The critical role of the emergency response personnel at San Francisco International Airport (SFO) and the firefighters from the San Francisco Fire Department cannot be underestimated. Although certain issues regarding communications, triage, and training became evident from the investigation and must be addressed, emergency responders were faced with the extremely rare situation of having to enter a burning airplane to perform rescue operations. Their quick and professional action in concert with a diligent flight crew evacuated the remaining passengers and prevented this catastrophe from becoming much worse. In addition, the emergency response infrastructure and resources at SFO that supported firefighting and recovery after the crash are admirable, significantly exceeding minimum requirements.”

Asiana Flight 214 struck the seawall short of SFO’s Runway 28L shortly before 11:30 a.m. on Saturday, July 6, 2013, beginning a violent impact sequence that sheared off the tail assembly, rotated the aircraft approximately 330 degrees, and created a heavy cloud of dust and debris before the aircraft finally came to rest approximately 2300 feet from its initial site of impact. The sheared-off tail assembly and force of rotation resulted in the ejection of five people: two crewmembers still strapped into the rear jump seats, and three passengers seated in the last two passenger rows. All three ejected passengers suffered fatal injuries: two died at the scene, and one died six days later.

With nearly 3,000 gallons of jet fuel venting from fuel lines where two engines detached during the crash sequence, a fire started in one engines that was wedged against the fuselage. A fire also began in the insulation lining the fuselage interior, beginning near the front of the aircraft. The interior fire produced heavy smoke inside the aircraft and posed extremely dangerous conditions given the volatility of leaking jet fuel and its proximity to potentially explosive oxygen tanks. In the face of imminent explosion, the rescue effort safely evacuated and triaged of some 300 people. Asiana flight 214 carried 307 individuals: 4 flight crew, 12 cabin crewmembers and 291 passengers. Three of the 291 passengers were fatally injured.

The case is: Gan Ye and Xiao Yun Zheng, et al v. City and County of San Francisco, et al., U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California, case no. C14-04941, filed Aug. 13, 2014. Learn more about the San Francisco City Attorney’s Office at”

Old White Guy, Old White Guy, Less Old White Guy: A Random Sample of SF’s Supposedly “Diverse” Golf Course in San Mateo County

Monday, July 6th, 2015

So that’s 100% white guys. (Of “course,” our n=3 here, but even so. I mean, the people who take advantage of this golfing subsidy skew white, male, older, wealthier, right? I mean, am I wrong here? Disabuse me, Gentle Reader, if necessary.)

These are the only people I’ve ever seen at the white elephant known as Sharp Park, which, oddly, is operated by San Francisco even though it’s not even located in San Francisco.

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So, why would Interim Mayor Ed Lee go against the Board of Supervisors, who wanted to sell off / give away / otherwise rid ourselves of this light-skinned loxodontine from Way Down In Pacifica? Well, middle-class welfare tends to be hard to eliminate.

And then there’s this constituency:

“City management of the golf course is handicapped by a sclerotic labor contract that has some employees earning six-figure salaries* for work that pays less than half of that on most golf courses.”

Oh well. I suppose our southernmost “run-down” golf course will continue to make us a national laughingstock.

And who’s going to pay for the $20-$30 million* worth of deferred work what this ball-and-chain needs?

I don’t know.

Oh well.

*Practically everything in Frisco is “sustainable” these these days. But what about Sharp Park? And then there’s this, from our drought-addled Year of the Lord 2015:

Dan Noyes:How do you respond to this not being fixed for four years?”
Gavin Newsom’s Jogging Buddy / Political Booster / Lawyer: “Well, that’s probably not exactly accurate. There are a series of leaks in the system and we manage them as best we can.” 

50,000 gallons? That’s a Cosco Busan bunker oil spill-worth of water daily. Oh well.

Dogged Elephant Dr. Hamburger!? – Scenes from the Controversial McDonalds at Haight & Stanyan – SFGov Wants to Shut This Place Down?

Thursday, June 11th, 2015

Here’s Camden Avery’s Hoodline update from a couple months ago, and that leads us to this – Stanyan McDonalds owner CC Yin is the “Asian Mr. McDonalds,” a “dogged elephant,” AND “Dr. Hamburger!” Oh my.

Anyway, here are some shots taken since SFGov’s rumblings about shutting down the joint made the news.

What’s this – beat cops?

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And then, as I was passing by again a couple  hours  later, a different set of beat cops:

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I hadn’t noticed as many cops here, you know, historically.

Here’s the famous patio – it looks like a ghost town these days, most of the time, but this is where a handgun ended up skidding along the bricks before an SFPD arrest about a month ago. AFAIK:

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Here’s a shot from the parking lot, across Stanyan. Is Mickey D’s responsible for this as well?

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And look, it’s SFGov itself enjoying the parking lot:

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Speaking of which, it looks like ZipCar has a deal to use this underused lot:

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Le mise en scene – it’s pretty bucolic most of the time, actually:

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A small silver security guard car is over to the right – prolly it itself scares away a lot of hippies these days:

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Two women loitering, I suppose. Is this threatening to area residents?

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And there go the loiterers, cutting through the lot.

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Are you bored? I’m bored.

I’ll tell you, if you can’t handle the Stanyan Street McDonalds, you can’t handle much.

Drip Drip Drip – “SF Archbishop Star of Sea Emotional Abuse Priest Scandal Grows Bigger” – Drip Drip Drip

Monday, April 27th, 2015

Well here it is, a compendium, below.

I’ll tell you, right about now is generally when the board of directors of a typical organization would be holding an emergency meeting to assess, and then take action. But my experience in such matters is limited to non-Catholic orgs. Would these matters indeed go all the way up to the Pope, the Bishop of Rome, Italy? IDK.

On It Goes


More Trouble for Bay Area Catholics – Unearthed Lawsuit Against Father Illo for Infliction of Emotional Distress

Saturday, April 25th, 2015

[UPDATE: Apparently, we’re talking about Negligent Infliction of Emotional Distress [NIED] and not Intentional Infliction of Emotional Distress [IIED], so I’ve deleted the word “intentional.”

Here’s today’s allegation:

“The facts of the 2005 lawsuit against Father Illo, which required him to pay $14,000 for therapy for the young girl he traumatized, are as follows:

An 11-year-old girl came to Father Illo in confidence to report an incident of sexual abuse by one of the priests in Illo’s parish in Modesto.

Upon listening to the child’s report of abuse, Fr. Illo responded by yelling at the child, calling her a liar and calling the character of the child’s mother into question.

Fr. Illo then invited the offending priest into his office, where the two of them further confronted the child.

It was only after Fr. Illo invited his secretary in the room and she found the child in a hysterical state that she was removed and the mother was called.

Fr. Illo has a sworn duty to immediately report all allegations of abuse to the police.

As part of the case, church documents detailing an internal canonical investigation were subpoenaed. This report raises questions about Fr. Illo’s leadership and referring to his personality as being “dictatorial, manipulative and insensitive.” The report recommended counseling for Fr. Illo. 

Controversy has dogged Father Illo since he was appointed by San Francisco Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone to Star of the Sea Parish and School in late 2014.  After taking charge of the San Francisco parish he banned altar girls, saying only boys can be altar servers. The move sparked criticism along with his statements to parents that he planned on replacing the school’s teachers with nuns from Dominican Sisters of Mary, Mother of the Eucharist order the same nuns that walked out on students at Marin Catholic High School last week to protest an event to prevent bullying of LGBT youth.”

I’ll tell you, this school must look like a dream come true to a lot of parents who rolled snake-eyes in SFUSD’s kindergarten “lottery,” but signing your kid up there sure seems like it comes with a lot of baggage…

ASSIGNMENT DESK: A Patent Dispute of Concern to Hot Young Women – Local Angle! – Health Angle! – LIFEFACTORY vs. ???

Thursday, March 19th, 2015

I’ll tell you, ONLY IN MARIN, ’cause only in Marin will you find the LifeFactory company, which makes those expensive, fashionable glass water bottles with silicone covers what are all the rage at the hot yoga the past few years. LF offers us “mobile glass solutions for modern life,” don’t you know.

I’ll tell you, this company up in Sausalito is crunchier than all get out, so you’ll have plenty to talk about when you go up there to ask about their knock-down drag out fight with The Competition.

That’s right, the Lifefactory ppl have US Patent 8579133 B2, Protective sleeves for containers. Check it:



You can see their press release below.

But come now the Ello and Zulu ppl to say, well, read what they have to say right here.

This story writes itself.

Bonus Time: Local Successful Female Entrepreneur of Color

Question Time:

1. Dear LF, what’s wrong with people buying Ello bottles at Costco #144 in SoMA for $7.49? (Oh, you’ll get an earful on that one, about how Ello sucks, which, you know, the pop-tops do seem a bit cheesy, but then again, everybody I know with the LF bottles complains about leaking caps, so there you go,)

2. And if your lawsuit is going so great, why is it that ppl can still buy Ello stuff in ‘Merica?  

3. And Ello uses squares instead of circles (and Zulu uses a diamond pattern, I think), so what’s so wrong with that? 

Enquiring Minds Want To Know. 

I’ll tell you, nobody’s covered this one. This is your story.

This is the most accessible, local patent law case you will find. I’m srsly.



“SAUSALITO, Calif., July 21, 2014 — Lifefactory, Inc. (, the leading provider of mobile glass solutions for modern life, today announced that it has filed a patent infringement lawsuit against Leapfrog Product Development LLC, the manufacturer of the Ello and Zulu water bottle lines, for offering for sale, selling, and distributing reusable glass bottles with protective silicone sleeves in violation of Lifefactory’s patent. The company’s lawsuit alleges infringement of Utility Patent No. 8,579,133, which covers Lifefactory’s innovative sleeves and wraps for protecting containers.

The lawsuit, filed in United States District Court, Northern District of California, represents Lifefactory’s dedication to protecting its brand while issuing a warning to others attempting to or planning to infringe on its innovations. The lawsuit is the largest and most significant to date brought by Lifefactory, and is part of the company’s ongoing proactive efforts to combat the unlawful production, distribution, and sale of products that infringe on its valuable intellectual property rights.

“Lifefactory’s patent portfolio represents years of hard work and showcases our commitment to innovation on behalf of our customers,” said Roy Mabrey, C.O.O. of Lifefactory, Inc. “Putting our utility patent into full effect will allow our retail partners and consumers to be able to purchase high-quality products they can trust without confusion.”

Lifefactory has been awarded numerous design and utility patents and has additional patents pending in the U.S. and internationally. For additional information, please visit


Lifefactory is the leading provider of mobile glass solutions for modern life. The Company brings the purity of glass, the protection of silicone, and the power of color to a full line of products designed for healthy families. Lifefactory’s materials are free of all known harmful substances including BPA/BPS and phthalates. All components are made in North America andEurope. All products are dishwasher safe. The Company is privately held and headquartered in Sausalito, CA.

SOURCE Lifefactory, Inc.”

Oh My: Rob Anderson and Mary Miles Take Aim at the SFMTA’s Plans for Polk Street

Tuesday, March 3rd, 2015

This was the team that tied SFGov up in knots with an injunction for four long years.

They’re ba-aack:

Mary Miles (SB #230395)
Attorney at Law
for Coalition for Adequate Review
San Francisco, CA 94102
Edward Reiskin, Director
Roberta Boomer, Board Secretary
and Members of the Board of Directors of the Municipal Transportation Agency
#1 South Van Ness Avenue, 7th Floor
San Francisco, CA 94103
DATE: March 3, 2015
This is Public Comment on Agenda Item 12, the “Polk Streetscape Project” (“Polk Project” or “the Project”), on the MTA Board’s March 3, 2015 Agenda. Under the Brown Act and CEQA, you are legally obligated to accept and consider this Comment and to place it in all public files on the Project. Therefore, please assure that this Comment has been distributed to all members of the MTA Board and placed in all applicable files on the Project.
The “categorical exemptions” invoked do not apply to the Project, and therefore you may not lawfully approve the Project or any part of it as proposed, since such approval will violate the California Environmental Quality Act (“CEQA”) (Pub. Res. Code §§21000 et seq.)
The Project proposes to reduce traffic and turning capacity on Polk and other Streets by eliminating existing parking lanes, reducing traffic lanes and installing obstructions to traffic flow and turning on this busy commercial corridor.
The unusual and highly inconvenient scheduling of this hearing before the MTA Board after 3:00 p.m., on a day with an extraordinarily long MTA Board Agenda shows the MTA Board’s contempt for the public and the significant impacts of the Project. The hearing should be continued to a date and time when the public can be heard without waiting hours for hearings on unrelated matters, and where the public’s comments will receive the Board’s full and serious attention. The hearing precludes public attendance by many people, including all those people who have to be at work. Combined with the short notice, that scheduling deprives the public of the opportunity to meaningfully participate in the environmental review and administrative proceedings on the Project.
On January 15, 2015, the San Francisco Planning Department issued a “Certificate of Determination of Exemption from Environmental Review” (“Exemption”) claiming that the Project was categorically exempt under Classes 1, 2, and 4 of CEQA, invoking 14 Cal. Code Regs. [“Guidelines”] §§ 15301, 15302, and 15304. None of those categorical exemptions apply to this Project. Further, the significant cumulative impacts on traffic, transit, parking, loading, and air quality caused by the Van Ness BRT project one block away, and by the CPMC Project at Van Ness Avenue at Geary Boulevard, make the Polk Project not categorically exempt. (Guidelines §15300.2) Both of those Projects also present “unusual circumstances” precluding categorical exemption of the Polk Project.
1. The Polk Project Does Not Fit Within The Categorical Exemptions Invoked…

First SF Loses Its Hooters and Now This: Dick’s Last Resort Shutters After Six Months – Who’s Next for 353 Jefferson?

Wednesday, January 14th, 2015

Of course, our Hooters was having to deal with some wage and hour lawsuit issues when it went away, but one supposes the rents up there at 353 Jefferson were too high for them to keep on keeping on.

This was the replacement – Dick’s Last Resort. It lasted six months.

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I can’t imagine locals going to 353 Jefferson for any kind of restaurant, and the tourists are probably heavier at the other end of the wharf, and the building is set back a ways from the sidewalk, so these can be challenges:

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Who will try to make a go of it next at this cursed location?

Whoa: Asiana Airlines Flights To and From SFO “Likely” to be Suspended for as much as Four Months – Punishment for Flight 214

Thursday, November 13th, 2014

From San Francisco-based military writer Kyle Mizokami comes word of a plan to temporarily suspend Asiana Airlines flights between Incheon International Airport (ICN) and SFO:

Asiana Faces Suspension of San Francisco Flights

“Under the plan, the ministry will ask Korean Air to use larger aircraft on the Incheon-San Francisco route to increase the number of seats, bring in chartered planes, or channel passengers on transit routes. A senior ministry official recently visited concerned lawmakers at the National Assembly to brief them on the plan.”

Does this seem real to you? It seems real to me. Or perhaps elements of the Republic of Korea are trying to scare Asiana straight after the Flight 214 disaster?

Korean Air currently uses Boeing 747 and 777 aircraft on this route – might it be tough for it to expand capacity just for a few months? IDK. I can’t think of too many options for KA to use planes larger than these, excepting for one or two of their ten newish double-decker superjumbo Airbus A380’s, but it’s not like those aircraft are just sitting around waiting to be used this way.

This suspension idea doesn’t make sense to me – I suppose we’ll find out tonight…

[UPDATE: Well, a 45 suspension just got handed down, but Asiana wants to appeal the decision.]