Monthly Archives: November 2014

Nov 28, 2014 - Premises Liability


On behalf of Peter Hileman of Drake, Hileman & Davis, P.C. posted in Premises Liability on Friday, November 28, 2014. Late fall and early winter are peak times for slip and fall injuries throughout the Commonwealth. Accumulations of ice and snow can make walking near commercial properties a particularly treacherous activity. In a previous blog post, we discussed a lawsuit filed by New Jersey woman against a Philadelphia, Pennsylvania-area home improvement store. In that case, the woman claimed that she slipped and fell on a puddle of water at the front of the store after husband dropped her off from their car. Imagine if that puddle of water had instead been a slab of ice. Pennsylvania law has long recognized the duty of a landlord to take reasonable care to ensure that conditions on their property are not unreasonably dangerous to others. Another tenant of premises liability doctrine holds that a property owner also has a duty to exercise reasonable preventative measures against foreseeable risks. This means that they should not require extra notice of potential hazards which were known to them, or reasonably should have been known them. A good example of this is the current Doylestown Borough ordinance regarding snow and ice removal. According to the code, property owners must clear their walkways which pose a danger to others within 10 hours after a period of snowfall has ended. Essentially, this means that a land owner should have known that their publicly assessable walkways may cause a hazard after a […]

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Nov 20, 2014 - Truck Accidents


On behalf of Peter Hileman of Drake, Hileman & Davis, P.C. posted in Truck Accidents on Thursday, November 20, 2014. In a previous blog post, we discussed the serious consequences that sometimes result when truck drivers are excessively fatigued. In that post, we noted that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says that a driver who has been awake for 24 hours straight is equally impaired as someone who is legally drunk. In July 2014, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration implemented new regulations regarding the total hours of service in which commercial drivers are allowed to operate. These so-called “HOS Regulations” are meant to reduce truck accidents by preventing overly fatigued drivers from continuing to operate across America’s roadways. Truck drivers are now limited to driving for only 14 hours per workday but must stop for a break after 11 hours of continuous driving. The maximum allowable work hours per week for truck drivers has now been capped at a total of 70 hours. Truck drivers are also now required to take a 30-minute break during the first eight hours of their shifts. The new regulations contain a provision aimed at allowing a truck driver’s natural body clock to “reset” by resting for a specified period of time when the body most requires rest. Currently, drivers who have reached their maximum 70-hour work week limit are not permitted to resume driving until they have rested for 34 consecutive hours. Additionally, drivers must have rested during the hours of 1:00 […]

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Nov 12, 2014 - Wrongful Death


On behalf of Peter Hileman of Drake, Hileman & Davis, P.C. posted in Wrongful Death on Wednesday, November 12, 2014. Pennsylvania safety officials hope that a new law will help curb boating and water-related accident fatalities. The new law, which went into effect Nov. 1, now requires all boaters and waterfowl hunters throughout the Commonwealth to wear life jackets while on the water between Nov. 1 through April 30. This regulation also extends to water vessels less than 16 feet in length such as canoes and kayaks. According to the Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission, research drawn from boating accident reports show that nearly 80 percent of all boating accident fatalities happened to individuals not wearing life jackets. The PFBC says that a large number of those fatal accidents are caused by the human body’s reaction to becoming immersed in cold water. An agency spokesperson says that the sudden unexpected plunge into cold water is the real culprit. According to the spokesperson, the involuntary gasp caused by a dunk in water below 70°F can bring about hyperventilation and quickly diminish a swimmer’s ability to escape the water. National statistics also seem to support that theory. The PFBC says that boating accidents which happened during the colder parts of the year typically result in more deaths. It is estimated that boating accidents which occur in water that is 39°F are roughly 4 times more likely to result in death when compared to warmer water accidents. Pennsylvania boaters, waterfowl hunters and other […]

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Nov 6, 2014 - Drunk Driving Accidents


On behalf of Peter Hileman of Drake, Hileman & Davis, P.C. posted inDrunk Driving Accidents on Thursday, November 6, 2014. In a previous entry on our website, we explained that Pennsylvania motorists should always elect to choose full tort car insurance vs. the limited tort option. That is because full tort coverage will allow you to recover for bodily injuries even if you are not seriously injured. The other reason is that full tort coverage only costs approximately 15 percent more, or $150 extra per year, than limited tort insurance. This may not seem like a wise decision at the time you are writing the check to the insurance company, but if you have an accident later, you will understand the prudence of taking that extra precaution. However, Pennsylvania’s relatively recent tort reform laws have several exceptions to the rules that normally limit the recovery of injured plaintiffs. Accidents caused by drunk drivers are not covered under the limited tort provisions. This means that even motorists with limited tort insurance coverage are entitled to seek compensation for their injuriesif they were caused by a drunk or drugged driver. Some other exceptions to the limited tort law are accidents caused by drivers who intentionally use their vehicle to injure or kill others, and drivers who fail to maintain mandatory minimum car insurance. Our law firm wants you to know that we believe that the American legal system should recognize your pain and suffering as a valid claim worthy of compensation. For […]

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"I slipped on ice a few years ago and ended up needing surgery. As a result I lost a few months of work. Drake Hileman and Davis helped me in so many ways, not just getting compensation, which they did. But they were there to answer the many questions I had through the whole process. I'm from Warminster, PA. Hoping I don't need them again, but I would recommend the firm to anyone. Great lawyers and staff."

Drake, Hileman & Davis

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