Resources

Apr 12, 2016 - Wrongful Death

READ THE FINE PRINT ON CARBON MONOXIDE DETECTORS

On behalf of Peter Hileman of Drake, Hileman & Davis, P.C. posted in Wrongful Death on Tuesday, April 12, 2016. Carbon monoxide is very dangerous because, without a detector, you may have no idea that it’s in your home. Even when building up to deadly levels, you’re not going to see it or smell it. That’s why people often call it a silent killer. A carbon monoxide detector works much like a smoke detector, and there are even combination units that check for both at the same time. If the gas is found, it chimes and tells you to get out of the house before you suffer any harm. However, experts warn that you absolutely need to read the fine print. A lot of detectors are only rated to work at all for seven years. Don’t just assume that the detector is working because it’s not making any noise. After you get past that seven-year mark, it may have failed and it will stay silent even if your home is full of gas. Now, many detectors are set up to chime when they need to be replaced. This is to let you know in case you forgot—or if you bought your home with the detectors already installed and you have no idea how old they are. That being said, this function could break and you may not get any warning, so it’s best to keep track of the lifespan on your own. If you have lost a family member because of […]

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Mar 29, 2016 - Car Accidents

PARENTS MAY ACTUALLY BE SOME OF THE MOST DANGEROUS DRIVERS

On behalf of Peter Hileman of Drake, Hileman & Davis, P.C. posted inCar Accidents on Tuesday, March 29, 2016. Teenagers often get stereotyped as the worst drivers. People assume that they are constantly talking to one another, playing the music too loudly, and texting while they drive. While all of these things can be true, interviews with some parents have shown that they can be dangerous, as well. Studies have demonstrated that children are incredibly distracting, and driving with them in the car can be as hazardous as texting and driving. One woman who was interviewed admitted to a whole host of offenses, including the following: — Driving with her knees– Giving out food and drinks for breakfast in the morning, while driving– Working to break up arguments– Stopping a child who felt carsick from throwing up while in a moving car The woman admitted that she knew these things were dangerous. In fact, she said that her own cousin had watched a child drop something on the floor and then reached down to try to pick it up. When she did, she was involved in a car accident and was injured so badly that she passed away. The woman admitted that this was eye-opening, but that she still made poor decisions behind the wheel. The AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety carried out a study and determined that babies were eight times as distracting as passengers who were adults, while children were four times as distracting as adults. Has a […]

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Mar 22, 2016 - Car Accidents

DRIVERS MAKE MANY DIFFERENT TYPES OF MISTAKES AT YIELD SIGNS

On behalf of Peter Hileman of Drake, Hileman & Davis, P.C. posted in Car Accidents on Tuesday, March 22, 2016. One of the big reasons behind car accidents is that drivers often fail to do as they are instructed by the traffic safety devices that are in place. This includes stop signs, red lights, flashing lights, and much more. One device that seems to create a lot of confusion and different types of mistakes is the yield sign. A yield sign is intended to get a driver to slow down, look for other traffic, and then allow that perpendicular traffic to pass if necessarily. If there is no traffic, the driver does not have to come to a full stop, but he or she should still slow down and look both ways before driving into the street. These signs are often used in low-traffic areas were a stop-sign is deemed to be overkill, but where drivers do need to be alert regarding an intersection. The issue is that drivers will make mistakes that run from being overly cautious to completely ignoring the sign. Some drivers just come to a complete stop, as if they are going through a stop sign. This is incorrect, and it congests traffic. It could even lead to rear-end accidents. Other drivers, however, hardly slow down and just sail through the sign, knowing they don’t legally have to stop if the way is clear. However, this can be even more dangerous if they don’t see opposing traffic […]

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Mar 17, 2016 - Premises Liability

ROOT CAUSES CAN DETERMINE FAULT IN ACCIDENTS

On behalf of Peter Hileman of Drake, Hileman & Davis, P.C. posted in Premises Liability on Thursday, March 17, 2016. When an accident happens, to determine whether or not there is a premises liability case for those who are injured, it’s important to break things down and look at the root causes of the accident. Only by doing this can fault be determined in specific situations. A popular example of this is the tragedy that happened at the Kansas City Hyatt-Regency Hotel back in the 1980s. There was a dance contest at the hotel, people grouped up to watch it from pedestrian walkways, and the walkway on the fourth floor collapsed. It then hit the one below it and they both fell all the way to the ground floor. Over 200 people were injured and 114 perished. When looking for the root cause, what was found was that a longitudinal weld did not have the strength needed to support the walkway. That weld gave out as people stood on the walkway in groups, giving it more weight than usual, when people just walked across it. When the weld failed, a support rod from the walkway then tore through the box beam. That’s what made the walkway collapse, and the second one was destroyed by the impact with the first. Root causes can go even further when establishing fault. There were clearly design issues with the walkways, and it was later discovered that project management errors made it so that these issues […]

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Mar 11, 2016 - Wrongful Death

MEDICAL MALPRACTICE CASE OF DOCTOR’S DEATH CONTINUES

On behalf of Peter Hileman of Drake, Hileman & Davis, P.C. posted inWrongful Death on Friday, March 11, 2016. A few hours before a 26-year-old doctor died on May 29, 2013, of a brain hemorrhage, doctors and physician assistants were still trying to determine what was wrong. Some thought it was brain swelling, others thought it was an infection and still more thought that it was a blood clot or a platelet disorder. The woman died after a major vein in her head burst due to a blood clot. The woman’s attending physician testified in a court in the medical malpractice trail that she ordered a CT scan because the woman had a history of headaches and her platelets were dropping. Even though the physician put a rush on the CT scan, it would take another hour for it to be done. The doctor said she thought the woman was having some type of neurological emergency in her testimony given at a deposition. However, when she was on the stand, she said she didn’t think it was an emergency. It would take about four hours for the woman to have an MRI done. When the woman was first admitted to the hospital, her platelet level was “off the charges.” It’s not known why this test wasn’t repeated for two days. The physician’s assistant said that she thought the woman might have been having a stroke. Once the woman started to experience tunnel vision, the physician’s assistant said that was a […]

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Mar 3, 2016 - Drunk Driving Accidents

WHAT IF YOU GET A DRUNK UBER DRIVER?

On behalf of Peter Hileman of Drake, Hileman & Davis, P.C. posted inDrunk Driving Accidents on Thursday, March 3, 2016. Uber is an app-based driving service that allows people to call someone else to pick them up and lets them pay with a credit card, all from their phone. It’s very popular with those who go out to the bar, have a bit too much to drink, and know they should find a safe ride home. In fact, Uber has stated, along with Mothers Against Drunk Driving, that they help to lessen the amount of drunk driving incidents across the United States. But what if you get an Uber driver who is also drunk? Is this something that could realistically happen? According to one woman, it definitely can. She claims that she called an Uber driver who turned out to be the same person who was at a party with her. She’d says she had seen him drinking wine and smoking a joint at the party. He showed up to get her, and she says she had to make him stop so she could get out of the car. The woman says that she contacted the company. She says she also found that a lot of other people had complained about the same thing. However, she learned that most people never went to the police. She also said that the company, which has a policy saying that drivers can never use alcohol while working, gave vouchers to those who complained. […]

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Feb 25, 2016 - Motorcycle Accidents

RELATIVELY SPEAKING, MOTORCYCLE DEATHS ARE VERY HIGH

On behalf of Peter Hileman of Drake, Hileman & Davis, P.C. posted in Motorcycle Accidents on Thursday, February 25, 2016. When looking at the raw stats, it appears that motorcycle deaths make up just a small portion of all traffic deaths—just 14 percent. That leaves another 86 percent to be divided among categories like drivers, passengers and pedestrians. However, the key thing to remember is that there are far fewer motorcycles on the road, so the total percentage is naturally going to be smaller. When you factor this in, it becomes apparent that motorcycle accident death rates are actually quite high. On the whole, motorcycles accounted for less than a single percent of all of the total vehicle miles traveled in the United States. This statistic is actually more important than looking at the amount of motorcycles and contrasting it with the amount of cars. Many people who own motorcycles do not use them very frequently. They don’t use them as daily drivers and they park them in the garage for the winter, for example. Because of this, the amount of vehicle miles traveled gives a more accurate picture of how common motorcycles are. If they led to just as many deaths as other vehicles, they’d also come in with less than one percent of the total deaths. The fact that they come in at 14 percent shows a stark difference between the two. The statistics used to reach these numbers came from studies of accident death rates between 2008 and […]

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Feb 19, 2016 - Car Accidents

THE 4 MAIN REASONS CAR ACCIDENTS HAPPEN

On behalf of Peter Hileman of Drake, Hileman & Davis, P.C. posted in Car Accidents on Friday, February 19, 2016. You may have heard that driver error causes the majority of accidents, and that’s true, but it’s important to note that it’s not the only reason. There are four main causes to consider in Pennsylvania, so it’s time to take a look at them, starting with the fourth-most common reason and working up to the first. — 4. Equipment Failure This can take on a lot of different forms, but it essentially means that the driver does nothing wrong and crashes because a part of the vehicle breaks on the road. This could mean the brakes go out, the gas pedal gets stuck or that the windshield wipers fail in a storm. — 3. Roadway Design When a road is laid out poorly, it can cause sight lines that make it hard for drivers to see turns or where other traffic is merging in. Issues with materials can also mean a road surface causes a crash. Additionally, the devices used to control traffic—stoplights and road signs—could be set up ineffectively or in a confusing manner. — 2. Poor Roadway Maintenance Poor maintenance to the road itself could cause huge potholes that damage vehicles or cause accidents. Loose materials can also make drivers lose traction. Additionally, stoplights and other devices could break down so that drivers don’t know what to do. — 1. Driver Behavior As noted above, the behavior of drivers […]

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Feb 11, 2016 - Car Accidents

MISSIONARY DIES IN CRASH WITH SCHOOL BUS

On behalf of Peter Hileman of Drake, Hileman & Davis, P.C. posted in Car Accidents on Thursday, February 11, 2016. A missionary for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints was killed in Pennsylvania when she was involved in a car accident with a school bus. The woman, who was 20 years old and was from Utah, was a passenger in the vehicle that crashed. Three other missionaries were with her in the vehicle, and they were taken to medical centers for treatment, though they are all expected to recover. Two children who were on the school bus were also injured and received treatment, and their injuries were described as minor. There were a total of 32 children on the bus at the time of the crash. The church put out a statement offering support to the family who had lost their daughter and for those who were recovering. They praised the example that was set by the young woman who passed away and noted that others were blessed with her friendship. The crash happened on snowy roads at the intersection where W Trindle Road and North Locust Point Road come together. Pictures from the scene show the small vehicle sitting near the bus, with heavy damage that caused the roof to cave in and bent the car down in the middle, covered in snow as emergency crews work to clear the wreckage. Descriptions of the accident say that it was the bus that struck the smaller vehicle. When loved […]

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Feb 1, 2016 - Wrongful Death

WHAT TO DO IF AN INJURED PERSON DIES BEFORE A LAWSUIT BEGINS

On behalf of Peter Hileman of Drake, Hileman & Davis, P.C. posted in Wrongful Death on Monday, February 1, 2016. If a family member is injured, he or she may be planning on starting up a personal injury lawsuit, depending on how the injury occurred. For example, if your spouse is injured in a car accident caused by a negligent, reckless driver, the two of you may start planing a lawsuit to recover the financial losses while the person is still getting treatment at the hospital. What should you do, though, if the person passes away before that lawsuit officially begins? One option may be to start a wrongful death lawsuit. The key to that suit will be how and why the person passed away. For instance, if the injuries directly led to the person’s death—perhaps his or her condition worsened over time—then you and other family members do have a right to look into a wrongful death case. A person does not have to die immediately for it to be a wrongful death. There just has to be a clear link from the death back to the incident itself. One complication, though, is if the person passes away from some unrelated issue, so there is not a link. Then a wrongful death lawsuit may not be appropriate. For example, if the person is injured and being treated but then dies from an unrelated illness or simply from natural causes, a wrongful death suit may not fit. As you can imagine, […]

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