Aug 8, 2014 - Premises Liability


On behalf of Peter Hileman of Drake, Hileman & Davis, P.C. posted in Premises Liability on Friday, August 8, 2014. Last July, a patient at a Pennsylvania hospital unexpectedly flew into a rant about guns being banned at the facility before opening fire on his caseworker and wounding his psychiatrist. During the exchange, the psychiatrist was able to access his own firearm and stopped the shooter by firing back and injuring him. The defendant was then taken to the ground and apprehended. Additional ammunition was found in the defendant’s possession. This incident follows another situation that happened at a Utah hospital back in May. In that case, a man who had been turned away from the emergency room earlier returned and brandished two handguns before being shot and wounded by visiting parole officers. Although the shootings made sensational headlines, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration says that hospital staff are some of the most likely workers to become victims of workplace violence. Security consultants throughout the medical industry also agree with that assessment. According to them, people working in emergency rooms or mental health units need to have a plan and be ready to react to a variety of threats. That’s because hospital shootings occur several times each year and typically involve so-called mercy killings or disgruntled family members attacking doctors using firearms. The basic concept behind premises liability law is simple. Customers have a right not to be injured when visiting grocery stores, shopping malls, retail stores and other similar […]

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Aug 1, 2014 - Car Accidents


On behalf of Peter Hileman of Drake, Hileman & Davis, P.C. posted in Car Accidents on Friday, August 1, 2014. The widespread appeal of handheld electronic devices such as mobile phones has led to a dramatic rise in distracted driving. A Pennsylvania organization known as Just Drive PA, has launched an effort in June to increase public awareness about the link between distracted driving and car accidents. Just Drive PA has collected data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and created a website to get its message out to the public. Perhaps one of the most surprising details about distracted driving is that some states only require that new drivers refrain from texting while behind the wheel. Pennsylvania has taken a more strict approach. Drivers of all ages are prohibited from texting while driving. However, it’s a mistake to think that texting while behind the wheel is the only form of distracted driving. The driver is considered distracted when their attention is taken away from driving. That means anytime that their eyes are diverted away from the road or their hands are removed from the wheel. Here are just a few examples of activities that constitute distracted driving: — eating, drinking or smoking — grooming, applying makeup — interacting with a pet that is moving around loose inside the car — reaching into the back seat for something — adjusting mirrors and headlights Of course, this list is not exhaustive and used mostly to demonstrate activities that could constitute distracted […]

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Jul 25, 2014 - Wrongful Death


On behalf of Peter Hileman of Drake, Hileman & Davis, P.C. posted in Wrongful Death on Friday, July 25, 2014. On July 19, a Bedminster Township, Pennsylvania, motorcyclist died just a block from his home after he was struck by an alleged drunk driver. The accident occurred in the small Bucks County town around 10:20 p.m. near the 700 block of Keller’s Church Road. The victim was operating his motorcycle at that time and had one passenger with him when a vehicle driven by a 64-year-old man struck the motorcycle. First responders took the 47-year-old victim to St. Luke’s Hospital in Fountain Hill, Pennsylvania, where he later died from his injuries. The victim’s passenger suffered injuries described as moderate in nature. An autopsy would later reveal that the motorcyclist died as the result of blunt force injuries. Authorities have since ruled the man’s death an accident. Police arrested the driver of the striking vehicle for homicide by vehicle, DUI, and other related charges for his role in the fatal collision. He was subsequently booked into the Bucks County Correctional Facility. The defendant is reported to reside in Doylestown, Pennsylvania. Authorities say the defendant’s next scheduled hearing is set for Aug. 4 at 2:00 p.m. The defendant is currently free on $100,000 bond. Although no amount of money can ever restore the loss of a loved one, a wrongful death lawsuit against the defendant’ s estate might help offset costs associated with an unplanned death. Additionally, victims of preventable fatal accidents […]

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Jul 18, 2014 - Commercial Vehicle Accidents


On behalf of Peter Hileman of Drake, Hileman & Davis, P.C. posted in Commercial Vehicle Accidents on Friday, July 18, 2014. The Royal Canadian Mounted Police have confirmed the death of a woman who was aboard a bus which overturned in Canada on July 13. According to the RCMP, a commercial tour bus chartered through a Lancaster, Pennsylvania, company was traveling near Neils Harbour, Nova Scotia, when the driver apparently lost control in a turn. The vehicle then hit the shoulder on the side of the road before overturning onto its side. The RCMP says that there were 21 people aboard the chartered bus including the driver at the time of the accident. Most of the passengers were from the Lancaster, Pennsylvania, area. They were part of a tour group which had gone to sightsee along the Cabot Trail in Nova Scotia. A spokesperson with the Cape Breton District Health Authority said that a total of 18 of the passengers involved in the accident were treated at two area hospitals. The RCMP says that two passengers remained in serious but stable condition. Police have not yet issued a cause for the accident. The investigation remains ongoing. People injured in commercial vehicle accidents need to know that the commercial carrier has a duty to exercise reasonable care to ensure the safety and well-being of its passengers. This includes making sure that drivers are physically able to perform their functions and receive appropriate and ongoing training. This means that a commercial carrier can […]

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Jul 15, 2014 - Truck Accidents


On behalf of Peter Hileman of Drake, Hileman & Davis, P.C. posted in Truck Accidents on Tuesday, July 15, 2014. When most people think of truck accidents, they envision a semi-truck involved in an accident while driving down the interstate. However, truck accidents can involve a wide range of commercial vehicles and a variety of different emergencies. For example, a food truck explosion in Feltonville, Pennsylvania, injured a dozen people. Five of those victims suffered serious burn injuries. The truck accident happened on July 1. According to witnesses, it involved a massive fireball that resulted when the truck’s propane tank exploded. The explosion was so loud and forceful that many who live in the area around Wyoming Avenue and Third Street heard or felt it while in their homes. The two operators of the food truck were critically injured, both with third-degree burns covering more than half their bodies. It’s not known if the woman who was blown out of the truck was the 42-year-old woman or her daughter, who is 18. The others who were seriously injured included two young men and a 13-year-old girl. They are in critical condition. The other seven people who were transported included people trapped in their cars after the explosion. According to those who live in the area, the mother and daughter who operated the truck are from Guatemala. The popular food truck, called “Parrillada Chapina,” is usually parked there on a daily basis. It’s important for those who are injured in truck accidents […]

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Jul 11, 2014 - Motorcycle Accidents


On behalf of Peter Hileman of Drake, Hileman & Davis, P.C. posted in Motorcycle Accidents on Friday, July 11, 2014. A recent June 28 motorcycle rally held in Drums, Pennsylvania, helped raise money for veterans. The event is called the UNICO Motorcycle Charity Run and operates in partnership with the Keystone Wounded Warriors. UNICO is an acronym representing Unity, Neighborliness, Charity and Opportunity. The non-profit helps veterans wounded after Sept. 11, 2001 who are facing hardship of some kind. The rally, which was held last Saturday, marked the fourth year of the annual event A spokesperson for UNICO’s Hazelton, Pennsylvania, chapter says that in the past UNICO was geared on only assisting seriously ill people. He says that the organization saw that there were also some veterans who also needed help. Originally, UNICO got its start as an Italian-American service organization found in 1922. The rally normally receives about 100 biker participants and brings in roughly $4,000 in charitable proceeds each year. They are expecting similar numbers for this year’s event. A board member for the Keystone Wounded Warriors says that their organization has experienced tremendous growth in the last several years. He says that when they first began, they were able to assist about six people over the course of six months. Now he estimates that the non-profit hauls in about $250,000 per year and can reach a much wider base. Keystone Wounded Warriors prides itself on forwarding about 80 percent of all donations towards non-cash assistance to veterans, such […]

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Jun 27, 2014 - Premises Liability


By Jonathan Russell of Drake, Hileman & Davis, P.C. posted in Premises Liability on Friday, June 27, 2014. A man is in stable condition after police say he was shot in the leg while visiting a Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, bar. The 38-year-old man suffered the gunshot injury to his leg on June 16 at around 1:30 a.m. Philadelphia police say the shooting happened after a fight erupted inside the bar. Police say that is when one man pulled out a gun and fired it at the victim. The victim was evacuated from the bar, located in a West Kensington neighborhood, and admitted to Temple University Hospital for his injuries. Police are still investigating the shooting. They have not mentioned a cause for the disagreement between the two men. The suspected shooter has been at large since he fled the scene of the crime earlier in the month. He is described as having worn a blue tank top at the time of the incident. Patrons who frequent bars and nightclubs have a right to be safe during their visit. Alternatively, proprietors serving alcohol should take all reasonable care to ensure that their patrons are not harmed while inside their establishments. Otherwise, that proprietor runs the risk of premises liability. For example, it is foreseeable that people drinking alcohol might get into fights with some frequency. Therefore, it would be prudent for a proprietor to take the precautionary measure of installing metal detectors or hiring extra security personnel to mitigate the risk of that harm. […]

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Jun 18, 2014 - Drunk Driving Accidents


By Drake Hileman of Drake, Hileman & Davis, P.C. posted in Drunk Driving Accidents on Wednesday, June 18, 2014. A recent celebration held on June 14 in Newport, Pennsylvania, paid homage to victims killed by drunk drivers. Last Saturday, the Perry County Fair Grounds hosted the seventh annual SuBeLex Memorial Festival in Newport. The name of the event is the combination of letters taken from the names belonging to three victims of a drunk driving accident that occurred on Oct. 14, 2002. The tragedy that sparked the origin of the festival involved a car accident that happened in New Bloomfield, Pennsylvania, and resulted in the deaths of two victims and left another paralyzed. Following the accident, the family members of the victims and their friends organized the annual festival as a way to honor their loved ones while also bringing awareness to the problem of drunk driving. One of the founders of the festival says that the non-profit typically brings in enough money each year to purchase things like DUI simulation goggles. The devices are then used to illustrate the dangers of drinking and driving at various drug and alcohol awareness forums throughout the county. A local radio station provided the music for the festival, which also featured a blood drive hosted by the Central Pennsylvania Blood Bank. Additionally, children’s activities were also featured, along with various craft vendors and other service organizations. A highlight of the event was the presentation of bricks, which will be taken and put on […]

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Jun 11, 2014 - Truck Accidents


By Drake Hileman of Drake, Hileman & Davis, P.C. posted in Truck Accidents on Wednesday, June 11, 2014. A new debate has now entered the conversation regarding commercial truck drivers operating their vehicles while exhausted. The question is who should be held accountable for truck drivers that feel compelled to drive tired in order to earn a living? A recent New Jersey truck accident that killed one person and injured three others is now getting a lot of attention due to a celebrity’s involvement. Actor Tracy Morgan was inside a limo van that was struck from behind by a Walmart tractor-trailer on June 6. Inside the limo van, one person was killed and three others seriously injured, including Morgan, after the limo van was flipped over from the truck’s impact. The driver of the truck, a 24-year-old man from Georgia, was later charged with death by auto and four counts of assault while driving. As the law currently stands, operators of commercial tractor-trailers are not supposed to work longer than 14 hours each day. They are also restricted from actually driving any longer than 11 hours during any single stretch of time. Obviously, the regulations are intended to keep truck drivers from falling asleep at the wheel. Police haven’t yet gone so far as to say that the truck driver fell asleep at the wheel, but they did mention prolonged sleep deprivation in their charging documents. What is interesting is that sleep deprivation can have the same effect as drinking […]

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Jun 6, 2014 - Pedestrian Accidents


By Drake Hileman of Drake, Hileman & Davis, P.C. posted in Pedestrian Accidents on Friday, June 6, 2014. On June 5, a New Hanover, Pennsylvania, women received her sentence for her role in the negligent vehicular death of an elderly pedestrian. The 64-year-old former school bus driver will avoid prison time but she will be on probation for three years for misdemeanor involuntary manslaughter. Additionally, she must complete 600 hours of community service. According to the criminal complaint, the defendant was driving her school bus in Lower Pottsgrove, Pennsylvania, with five children on board, headed to school. It was around 7:08 a.m. on Sep. 9, 2013. When police say that the front bumper of the bus struck a 78-year-old Pottstown, Pennsylvania woman while she was crossing the street at Mervine and North Charlotte streets. The defendant continued on after the pedestrian accident and delivered the children to school before returning to her home. Police later discovered her there after an intense investigation. She claims that she was unaware that she had struck a person. At her sentencing hearing, the defendant demonstrated profound remorse for the death of her victim. Her defense attorney mentioned that the defendant had a spotless driving record prior to the accident. She had not even received a speeding or parking ticket in over 30 years of driving. In an unusual twist, the victim’s family did not seek stiff punishment for the defendant but instead asked that the woman be compelled to spend the bulk of her 600 […]

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