Goldstein, Heslop, Steele, Clapper, Oswalt & Smith

Altoona Personal Injury Blog

Interstate 99 accident kills 2

An accident on Interstate 99 near Altoona left two people dead and one other person critically injured. Two other people were also taken to the hospital in what police described as guarded condition, but they indicated that they thought the two women would survive the accident.

The accident involved a mini-van that police believe may have been travelling too fast for the conditions, although police indicated that they did not think there was ice on the road.

Rise in fatal hit and run crashes means potential legal problems

According to recent figures, the number of deaths due to hit-and-run accidents is at an all-time high, at least dating back to 1975, when statistics were first officially kept.

Although experts are still trying to put a finger on exactly why, the number of fatalities due to hit-and-run car accidents has risen almost consistently since 2012, with only one slight decrease in the number between 2013 and 2014.

Falls top OSHA's list of workplace dangers

Like most people in Pennsylvania, you want to feel safe while you are at work. You should be able to expect that your employer is implementing all the necessary precautions to ensure your safety and your co-workers' safety, but you might be surprised to learn this is not the case. According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, violations leading to injuries -- particularly falls -- are still widespread.

You might feel protected because your boss provided you with safety equipment, but were you properly trained on its use? Many OSHA violations and subsequent injuries not only stem from a complete lack of necessary protections, but also from insufficient or nonexistent training.

Colder weather may mean more hazards on construction sites

With the fall season well underway and winter just around the corner, many Pennsylvania workers already dread getting out in the cold to make their commutes to work. For individuals like you who work in construction, that dread likely also pertains to having to work outside in inclement weather and cold temperatures.

Not only does the weather present inconveniences, it can also result in more hazards existing on construction sites. You certainly do not want to become injured from a weather-related hazard that could have been taken care of before the accident occurred. In the event that you do suffer injuries on the job, you may need to look into your workers' compensation options.

Danger of delivery truck accidents shown as child is killed

In Altoona and its surrounding areas, delivery trucks are constantly on the road at all hours. With how the world currently functions and people able to receive deliveries at the click of a button for work and personal use, this is no surprise. This can combine with time tested methods for children to get back and forth the school - the school bus - to create a dangerous situation. When children are waiting for the bus, accidents can happen. Unfortunately, some of these can cause severe injuries and fatalities. Those who have had a child injured in delivery truck accidents should think about their rights to seek compensation in a legal filing.

Recently, a 7-year-old child was waiting for the school bus when he was hit by a delivery truck. According to the coroner, the boy was killed after suffering blunt force trauma. A school bus driver found the child and called emergency services at shortly after 7 a.m. The investigation indicates that a delivery truck backed up and ran over the child. The circumstances of how the child was hit are still being assessed.

Risk of teen car accidents worse with teen passengers

There are innumerable dangers on the road in Altoona and all across Pennsylvania. People will be cognizant of them when they head out on the road in any capacity. Encountering a drunk driver, a reckless driver, a negligent driver or a distracted driver are among the most frequently referenced risks. All can cause car accidents with injuries and fatalities. Some of the most problematic drivers on the road are teens. Because they are new drivers and will frequently make mistakes due to youth and inexperience, it is wise to keep a watch for them.

Research has found that in addition to the above-listed behaviors that can cause an accident and are prominent in teens, there is another unexpected issue that can cause a crash: teens driving with fellow teens in the vehicle. There is a major difference in safety when teens are driving with other teens as passengers. According to AAA, the number of accidents with fatalities rose by more than 50 percent when there was a teen passenger compared to when teens drove by themselves. This rise was for everyone who was involved. That includes the teens in the vehicles, people in other vehicles, pedestrians and bicyclists.

Fatal truck accidents on the rise

If you tense up when a large truck barrels up behind you or passes you on the highway, you are not alone. Most people understand the dangers of sharing the road with tractor-trailers and other large commercial vehicles simply based on their size and speed. When the drivers of those trucks are careless or reckless, it often leads to tragedy.

A recent report from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration shows that the anxiety you feel around trucks in not misplaced. In fact, things seem to be getting more dangerous on the roads in Pennsylvania and across the nation. If you lost a loved one or suffered a catastrophic injury in an accident with a truck, you know first-hand how life-changing it can be.

Fatality shows danger of construction workplace accidents

Workplace accidents can happen in any kind of job in Pennsylvania with people suffering injuries and fatalities. Some industries are more dangerous than others, and the work is inherently risky. One of those industries is construction. Given the nature of the work with people stationed at great heights, using heavy equipment and trusting their safety to others, it is no surprise that many workplace accidents occur and people are hurt or lose their lives. For those injured, workers' compensation benefits are critical. For those killed, there are steps that must be taken for the family left behind to get death benefits. Having legal help is step one after a workplace accident.

A worker on a construction site died when he was hit by a piece of equipment. The accident occurred at around 8:30 a.m. when the man, said to be in his early-20s, was hit by an item that had been in the air. Reports suggest that the object spun and hit him. He was killed instantly. It has been referred to as a "freak" accident. It is being investigated by law enforcement and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration or OSHA. The project was to drill lines for an energy plant.

Does crash prevention technology stop distracted driving?

In a little over a decade, smart phones went from a new piece of interesting technology to an essential part of everyday life. Like most other people in Pennsylvania, you probably use your own smart phone for a wide range of tasks, including listening to music, browsing the internet and setting up GPS directions to new locations. Unfortunately, some people struggle to put their phones down while driving, putting you and everyone else at risk for a car accident. 

Distracted driving is a deadly habit. While most new vehicles now come equipped with crash warning systems, they may not actually be helping the problem. 

Are there time limits to get benefits after workplace accidents?

When a Pennsylvania worker suffers an injury or occupational illness on the job, there will be an expectation that he or she can get workers' compensation benefits. These benefits are crucial so the workers can stay financially solvent and get the medical help necessary to get back on the job. However, when seeking workers' compensation benefits after workplace accidents, there are fundamental factors that should be considered. One key issue to remember is the time limits when seeking benefits.

Except in instances where the employer is aware of the injury or the employee has given notice to an employer within 21 days of suffering the injury, there will be no workers' compensation until the injured worker has given that notice. It is necessary for the notice to have been given within 120 days after the injury has happened. If not, the workers' compensation is not given. Should a worker's benefits be denied, there will be three years from the date when the injury occurred to file a claim petition.

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