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Summer TBI Prevention

Summer presents a great opportunity to enjoy time outside with family and friends.  Sometimes, these outside activities can also pose risks.  This is especially true for activities where you are more exposed to the risk of traumatic brain injury (TBI).  When you and your loved ones are outside, it is important to remember the following tips to avoid summer injury:

 

  • Wear a helmet when doing outdoor activities like biking, skateboarding, and riding your four-wheeler
  • Remember to replace your helmet after a serious fall. Many helmets are only built to withstand one hard impact
  • If you're doing an activity for the first time, pay attention to the safety instructors and make sure you're using all of the safety equipment. Know when something is too challenging or risky for you, and don't be afraid to back down if you need to.
  • Make sure you know the area before you go out! It is important to know the basic layout of the terrain when hiking, biking, or being out on the water.  There may be hidden challenges or dangers that could have serious consequences for your family if you are unprepared.
  • When swimming in an unknown depth of water, always go feet first. This will help to prevent serious head, back, and neck injuries.
  • Always check the weather before going out on your outdoor adventure!

If you have recently been in a summer accident, it is important to closely monitor your body's response and recovery after the accident.  If you suspect a TBI, immediately seek help from a qualified physician who can diagnose you and develop a comprehensive treatment plan.  If your accident was due to the fault of another, it may also be time to seek legal action.  This is especially true if your injuries cause you to miss extended periods of work or not be able to continue your line of work at all.  Other major expenses resulting from an accident may include medical bills.  If you or a loved one has recently been in an accident due to the fault of another, please contact Altoona, PA area personal injury attorney Doug Stoehr to set up an initial, free consultation.  His law office can be reached by visiting his website at http://www.stoehrlaw.com or calling his firm at 814-946-4100.

Thank you to Brainline.org for the background information!

Throwback Thursday: Snowmobile Safety and Accident Prevention

This blog post, originally highlighted on our website several years ago, bears repeating as we enjoy winter sports outside. Please take a minute and review this article, which can be found below, to make sure your snowmobiling practices are as safe as possible!

An online article, which can be accessed by clicking this link, talks about The International Snowmobile Manufacturers Association's (ISMA) global campaign to raise awareness for snowmobile safety and training.  According to the publication, different countries' laws governing snowmobile operation are extremely variable, and there are generally fewer regulations for snowmobile operation than for other, similar vehicles like ATVs.


Most fatal snowmobile accidents occur when excessive speed and/or alcohol consumption play a role.  Not only does alcohol impair judgment and inhibit responses, it can also lead to hypothermia.  Night driving is also a particular hazard, and some reports estimate that most fatal accidents occur between the hours of 8PM and 3AM.  Interestingly, many snowmobile accidents also result in drowning.  When children are involved in fatal accidents, the majority of deaths tend to result head and spine injuries from impact against an object, such as a tree or wall.


The online article also offered several easy and practical snowmobile safety tips, several of which can be found below:

  • Wear warm, water repellant clothes with a windproof outer layer.  Don't forget gloves and goggles.
  • Tell others of your estimated time of arrival and let them know your route.
  • Always ride with someone else--don't travel alone.
  • Carry a first aid and safety kit.  A tool kit, flashlight, maps, and flares may be useful.
  • Be alert to potential avalanche concerns.  If you live in an avalanche-prone area, consider traveling with ice picks and poles to help you out in the case of an emergency.
  • If you go through the ice on your snowmobile, a special snowmobile suit may help you stay afloat for a short period of time.  Pull yourself onto the ice and roll away from the hole!  Keep your mittens/gloves on during this time, even though they are wet.
 
Off-road vehicles, such as snowmobiles and ATVs, are potentially dangerous vehicles for many of our state's youth.  Improper ATV use is leading cause of serious injury among Pennsylvanians.   Attorney Doug Stoehr of Altoona, PA handles cases involving injury as a result of accidents involving off-road vehicles.  For more information about Attorney Doug Stoehr and his central Pennsylvania practice, please call his law firm at 814-946-4100. 

Winter Sports Injuries

Being from Western Pennsylvania, it's hard not to enjoy the fall, but with the changing of the seasons we know that winter is now upon us.  For many of us, this winter will include a trip to one of the three ski resorts that serve our area.  Ski resorts can be a great place to cut loose with family and friends, but unfortunately sometimes those fun times end prematurely when you or a family member is injured.  At the law firm of Attorney Douglas V.Stoehr, we have experience in handling injuries related to skiing, snowboarding, and snow tubing accidents.  Sometimes these injuries can be very serious and life-altering.  If you have been injured in a winter sport activity please contact us to discuss the possibility of a personal injury claim. 

The most common causes of skiing and snowboarding injuries include:

  • Collisions with other skiers or snowboarders
  • Falls or collision with objects such as trees, fences, barriers or signs
  • Chair lift or tow line accidents
  • Accidents due to inadequate instruction from a skiing or snowboarding instructor,
  • Accidents due to skiing or snowboarding equipment failure. 

Your personal injury lawsuit will be based on the legal theory of negligence, and can be quite complex.  Furthermore, there is a Pennsylvania Statute that generally affords a defense to these types of claims.  Therefore, if you get hurt a ski resort, contact us.  We will investigate the facts and analyze the law, and will give you an opinion as to whether you have a claim.  Contact Attorney Stoehr at (814) 946-4100 for more information! 

Do you know Pennsylvania's snowmobiling laws?

If you are interested in using a snowmobile in Pennsylvania this summer, there are some rules and regulations that you need to know before you begin! 

For example, did you know that it is illegal to operate or be a passenger a snowmobile without wearing a properly fitted helmet? Also, no children aged 10-16 can operate a snowmobile except on family land.  This case is only changed if the child has taken a state-approved safety course and has received a certificate.

Also, many people may not realize that all snowmobiles that require general registration all need liability insurance coverage.  Proof of this coverage needs to be carried by the snowmobile operator.  If you fail to register your snowmobile and/or fail to obtain liability coverage, you may be fined up to $300.  There are also very specific regulations in Pennsylvania regarding brake systems, mufflers, sound levels, and visibility equipment.  So, the bottom line is: enjoy your snowmobile, but make sure to follow the state laws!

As fun and enjoyable as snowmobiling can be, all-terrain and off-road vehicles such as ATVs, dirt bikes, and snowmobiles are a leading cause of serious injury among Pennsylvanians, especially among our state's youth.   Attorney Doug Stoehr of Altoona, PA handles cases involving injury as a result of accidents involving off-road vehicles.  For more information about Attorney Doug Stoehr and his Blair county area practice, please call his law firm at 814-946-4100.

For more information about Pennsylvania's snowmobiling laws, please visit the original PDF handout here: 

http://www.dcnr.state.pa.us/cs/groups/public/documents/document/dcnr_015958.pdf.

Local ATV Accident Sends Two To Hospital

According to local news reports, our area saw two people who were injured after an ATV (all-terrain vehicle) crash last week.  Two adults were riding an ATV on a street in Houtzdale when they didn't stop at a blinking red light.  They were subsequently hit by a pickup trip, and were flown to our hometown hospital, UPMC Altoona, for care.  The driver of the ATV is suspected of being under the influence of alcohol while driving.  Both the STV driver and his passenger are said to have serious injuries. 


ATV use can be extremely dangerous in certain situations.  It goes without saying tat NO ONE should be driving any kind of vehicle after consuming alcohol.  Additionally, children appear to be the most susceptible to ATV-related accidents, and account for a large portion of ATV injuries and deaths.  Children under the age of 12 may be especially at risk for harm. Please exercise caution when riding your ATV, wear a helmet, and remain at a safe speed.  Also, do not ride your ATV when the weather or trail conditions suggest a heightened risk for injury.


ATVs, dirt bikes, and other off-road vehicles are a leading cause of serious injury among Pennsylvanians, especially among our state's youth.   Attorney Doug Stoehr of Altoona, PA handles cases involving injury as a result of accidents involving off-road vehicles.  For more information about Attorney Doug Stoehr and his central Pennsylvania practice, please visit his website at http://www.stoehrlaw.com or call his law firm at 814-946-4100.

Brush Up On Your ATV Safety For Fall!

Planning on riding on an all-terrain vehicle this fall? Are you sure that you're current on all the best practices for safety standards?  If you're unsure, it may be time to brush up on your facts! The website ATVSafety.org offers a variety of extremely helpful resources for you, your family, and friends.  They even have an online course so you can make sure you're fit and educated before you hit the road! You need to make sure you're safe and prepared before riding to avoid injuring yourself or others.   It should be noted that, within the Pennsylvania Vehicle Code, all-terrain vehicles need to be registered with the Department of Transportation.  A license is not required for drivers of these vehicles. There are no clear laws pertaining to the registration of dirt bikes. 


ATVs, dirt bikes, and other off-road vehicles (such as snowmobiles) are also a leading cause of serious injury among Pennsylvanians, especially among our state's youth. Attorney Doug Stoehr of Altoona, PA handles cases involving injury as a result of accidents involving off-road vehicles.  For more information about Attorney Doug Stoehr and his Blair county area practice, please visit his website at http://www.stoehrlaw.com or call his law firm at 814-946-4100.

Common Summertime Hazards--Did You Expect These?

In continuing on prior blog posts, it is important to be aware of the unique dangers and hazards that the summer weather can bring.  Some of them might be familiar to you, such as drowning, heat strokes, and bike accidents.  However, did you expect to see fireworks, food poisoning, and playground injuries to be among the list of top summertime hazards? All of these accidents possess potentially painful, serious, and/or life-threatening injuries.  If they are caused at the fault of another person, it may be time to seek legal counsel. 


 Unfortunately, many accidents see an expected and marked increase in the spring and summer, including incidences highlighted above, and those involving car, bike, and boating accidents. Victims of  accidents injured due to the fault of another may have lasting and extensive injuries that result in compounded medical bills and significant changes in mobility and ability.  Attorney Doug Stoehr is an attorney serving western and central Pennsylvania that handles cases involving personal injury. If you would like to consult with him about your case, please contact our law office.

To read more information about the top 10 summertime hazards, please click this link to Webbins.com's original article (http://www.webbins.com/blog/top-10-summertime-accidents).  This article talks in depth about many of the top injuries and accidents that occur in the summertime and how you can keep yourself safe!

Avoid Accidents While Camping This Summer

Are you planning on camping and experiencing one of our state's great parks this summer? If so, there are a few apps that you can put on your phone or tablet to make camping easier, more enjoyable, and safer! Check out the list, provided by GoErie.com (http://www.goerie.com/article/20160616/LIFESTYLES21/306169914/apps-can-enhance-your-camping-experience).  These apps include camp cooking recipes, constellation spotting guides, and various tips for knot tie techniques.  One of the other most important apps is the first aid and safety app!  


Many accidents see an expected and marked increase in the spring and summer, including incidences involving camping, car, bike, and boating accidents. Some of these accidents are the result of faulty equipment, such as many tools used during camping activities.  Victims of accidents injured due to the fault of another may have lasting and extensive injuries that result in compounded medical bills and significant changes in mobility and ability.  Attorney Doug Stoehr is an attorney serving western and central Pennsylvania that handles cases involving personal injury. If you would like to consult with him about your case, please contact our law office.

Six PA State Parks Make List of Great Family Parks!

We all know that our state of Pennsylvania is beautiful and offers a huge range of outdoor adventure opportunities, especially in the summer! We have so many great natural parks in our state, which includes many lakes that allow for fishing, boating, kayaking, and canoeing.  Recently, six of our state's parks made the list of "Top 100 Family Friendly Places to Fish and Boat", including two in our area! Keystone State Park in Pittsburgh and Bald Eagle State Park near Bellefonte both made the list.  


 Unfortunately, outdoor activities, especially in the summer when children and their families are spending much more time outside, tend to increase accidents as well. Boating accidents cause a significant number of injuries every summer, as do four-wheeling (ATV) accidents.  The warm weather and longer days also lead to an increase in reckless and distracted driving, which can result in many more motor vehicle accidents.  Accidents such as those noted above are frightening, unexpected, and potentially life-changing.  Clearly, the consequences of such accidents can be both severely emotionally and physically damaging. If you or a family member has been injured as a result of a pedestrian or bicycle accident and would like a free consultation with Attorney Stoehr, please contact our law office. 


Attorney Doug Stoehr is a lawyer specializing in personal injury and services the western and central Pennsylvania area.  He takes cases involving boat, car, truck, and other accidents.  If you feel that you have been wrongfully hurt in a pedestrian accident and would like to consult with him about a possible personal injury claim, please contact our law office.


The original article can be found via PennLive.com at this link:
http://www.pennlive.com/pa-sportsman/2016/06/which_six_waters_in_pennsylvan.html#0

Amazing Snowmobile Rescue Story Makes National News

How amazing and resourceful kids can be!! Our firm just read the most exciting article about a son who rescued his father from a potentially deadly snowmobile accident.  While out riding in the Lake Tahoe backcountry, a father was in a serious snowmobile accident while out with his young son.  In an effort to save his father, the boy got on his snowmobile and navigated his way out of the park to find help.  To read more about this amazing true story from Reader's Digest, please click here.

Snowmobiling is a very common winter sport in the United States, especially in our part of rural Pennsylvania.    It is an enjoyable way to get outside in cold weather and can be a way for families to spend time together. As stated on SnowMobile.org, "Historically individuals who snowmobile at a young age continue to snowmobile with their parents throughout their lives, sharing great experiences as a family. In many winter regions, snowmobiling is simply the main form of winter outdoor recreation and in some cases the main method of transportation available."
However, off-road vehicles, such as snowmobiles, are also a significant cause of serious injury among Pennsylvanians.  Attorney Doug Stoehr of Altoona, PA handles cases involving injury as a result of accidents involving off-road vehicles.  For more information about Attorney Doug Stoehr and his Blair county area practice, please visit his website at http://www.stoehrlaw.com or call his law firm at 814-946-4100.
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