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Truck Drivers Guilty of Distracted Driving

When you see tractor-trailers moving along our country's highways, you expect their drivers to be safe, alert, and vigilant. Unfortunately, this is not always the case.  A local New York City news source posted an article a few years ago about the increased occurrence of truck drivers who text and drive.  According to the news report, through local ABC news station 13WHAM,  "A hidden camera investigation has uncovered a dangerous trend on highways. WABC-TV in New York City set up camera on several of highly travel roadways, catching truckers texting and talking on their phones and one driver even talking on two cell phones at once. The New York State Department of Transportation said nearly 16,000 truckers were ticketed for distracted driving in 2013, but only four of them were suspended and taken out of service." 4 out of 16,000 drivers who were caught texting while driving seems like a tiny percentage!  

 
If you are involved in a car accident, most states, including Pennsylvania, have at least one section on the incident report dedicated to distracted driving violations.  Fines and charges may increase if you are cited with one of these violations.  Distracted driving is a major cause of motor vehicle accidents on the highway.  If you have been injured as the result of a distracted driver, it might be time to consult an attorney.  Attorney Doug Stoehr is a personal injury lawyer serving western and central Pennsylvania.  Please call his firm at 814-946-4100 for more information. 

Two Tractor-Trailers Collide, Cause Accident on I-80

A few weeks ago, I-80 East was closed for part of a day due to two tractor-trailer trucks causing a large accident.  While on the highway, one truck hit the back of another truck, which resulted in an accident and stopped traffic for many hours.  According to accident reports, at least one person is dead as a result. Unfortunately, these types of truck accidents are not uncommon on PA highways, especially highways that tend to be congested with many large tractor-trailers.

Commercial truck drivers are a significant cause of motor vehicle accidents . Often, these commercial drivers are fatigued and are driving above the mandated allotment of hours. Additionally, many of them are driving large vehicles that are not up to federal and state safety standards. As a result, passengers and other vehicles often bear the brunt of their illegal activity and are often seriously injured or die from a resulting collision. If you have been injured or a loved one has died as a result of a commercial vehicle accident, please contact our law office for a consultation at no cost to you at the Law Offices of Attorney Doug Stoehr at 814-946-4100.

New Alert Keeps PA Drivers Informed During Road Closures

Unfortunately, it does seem like Pennsylvania has a high number of car accidents each year, which leaves other drivers stranded on the highways for a long period of time while waiting for crash sites to be cleared.  However, Pennsylvania officials have recognized how frustrating this can be and are trying to keep drivers more informed.

 
According to PennLive.com, a tool called 511PAConnect will soon be available to drivers to keep them updated in the event of a long-term road closure as the result of an accident on a state highway.  This system will be a location-based alert that uses the same technology that issues Amber Alerts for missing children.  People in areas impacted by the road closure will get a message on their cell phone, and will then have the option to register for either text message or phone call updates.  Features include updates every 15 minutes, as well as personalized messages that can be sent out to groups of people.  


Despite our best efforts, sometimes an accident is unavoidable.  If an accident does occur, it's important to know that Pennsylvania is a comparative negligence state.  Comparative negligence simply means that if your negligence contributed to the accident, your damages will then be reduced by the amount of your negligence.  So please take every precaution to decrease the chances of contributing to an accident, and properly prepare your vehicle and yourself for the conditions ahead. 


Some preventative maintenance and exercising a little caution can go a long way in preventing an accident from occurring in the first place, and protecting you from liability.  However, if you are injured in a vehicle accident this winter please allow Attorney Douglas V. Stoehr to review your claim by calling our Altoona, PA law firm at 814-946-4100.

Holiday Driving Can Be Dangerous!

We're not out of the danger zone for holiday accidents yet! Please be safe, responsible, and alert when traveling between Christmas and New Year's Eve.

Remember that our law office is available to take your calls at 814-946-4100 to provide legal guidance involving any car accident concerns you may have! Our law office is skilled in handling car, bicycle, truck, and pedestrian accidents. This is also true for those people who have suffered injuries from a car accident due to other's distracted or fatigued driving.

To read more about holiday accidents and statistics, please click this article:

Staying Safe This Labor Day Weekend

Are you prepared for the road this Labor Day weekend?  An article in a recent edition of USA Today may give you a lot to think about.  According to their reports, car crash deaths are on the rise, even though cars are considered safer.  This Labor Day weekend may end up being the deadliest one since 2008, according to the National Safety Council.  They predict that fatal accidents on the road may result in over 400 deaths this coming weekend.   Across the country, around 20,000 people have been killed in road accidents since 2016 began.  Millions more people were injured.  

However, some sources say that these increases may be due to the fact that people are driving more in general in the past years, which will lead to a proportional increase in accidents.  Distracted driving is also becoming more of an issue than in past years.  

Either way, how can you reduce your chances of being in an accident this coming weekend?

  • Don't drive impaired, and don't get into a car with an impaired driver.  
  • Always wear your seatbelt, even for short drives.  
  • Avoid driving late at night
  • Pay extra care to other drivers and any swerving, sudden stops, or unusual movements.

Car accidents are frightening, expensive, and time-consuming. Car accidents may also result in injuries that are extensive, painful, and long-lasting.  If you suffered an injury due to a car accident caused by another, it might be time to consult with an attorney.  Attorney Doug Stoehr is a personal injury lawyer serving western and central Pennsylvania. For more information on his Altoona, PA law firm, please visit his website athttp://www.stoehrlaw.com or call his office at814-946-4100.

Thanks to USA Today for the background information. 

Tractor-Trailers Can Cause Big Problems on Highways

Recently, a terrible accident occurred on I-81 in Pennsylvania that involved a motorcycle driver and a tractor-trailer.  The motorcycle driver crashed when a blanket got stuck into his back wheel, then was hit when multiple tractor-trailers consequently ran over him. The driver was thrown from his cycle, where he was hit by the large oncoming trucks.  According to reports, none of the tractor-trailers drivers stopped to help or investigate the accident. State police are still looking for the drivers. 


Tour bus and commercial truck drivers are a significant cause of motor vehicle accidents onAmerica's roads and highways. Often, these commercial drivers are fatigued and are driving above the mandated allotment of hours. Additionally, many of them are driving large vehicles that are not up to federal and state safety standards. As a result, other vehicles and motorcycle riders often bear the brunt of their illegal activity and are often seriously injured or die from a collision with the tour bus or commercial truck. If you have been injured or a loved one has died as a result of a commercial vehicle accident, please contact our law office for a consultation at no cost to you at the Law Offices of Attorney Doug Stoehr at 814-946-4100.


Original article can be found here:
http://www.cbsnews.com/news/blanket-causes-deadly-motorcycle-accident-in-pennsylvania-police-say/

Construction Season Safety Tips

Well, Pennsylvanians, "construction season" is unofficially here.  Need some tips as to how to keep your sanity and keep yourself/others safe on the road? Check out these tips below, courtesy of DrivingAmbitionInc.com.

  • The article from Driving Ambition notes that you should be aware that traffic delays in work zones aren't always confined to certain hours, and can occur late at night and early in the morning.  Be aware at all times. Also, be patient with construction workers.
  • Although obvious, always remember to slow down in work zones.  This will protect you, the other cars, and the construction workers!
  • Also, don't tailgate! Leave breathing room for other cars in case unexpected stopping/slowing down occurs.  
  • As always, DON'T text and drive.  You will need your attention focused on the road when going through work zones even more so than when driving regularly down the road.  Don't make a foolish mistake like texting and potentially cause long-lasting consequences for yourself and others. 
  • As noted in the article, "Expect delays and give yourself plenty of time to reach your destination on time.  A great resource is the National Work Zone Safety Information Clearinghouse (http://www.workzonesafety.org/).  This website contains information on work zone delays throughout the country."

Car accidents are frightening, expensive, and time-consuming.  These accidents become more complicated and potentially lethal when they occur in a work zone.  Car accidents may also result in injuries that are extensive, painful, and long-lasting.  If you suffered an injury due to a car accident caused by another, it might be time to consult with an attorney.  Attorney Doug Stoehr is a personal injury lawyer serving western and central Pennsylvania. For more information on his Altoona, PA law firm, please visit his website athttp://www.stoehrlaw.com or call his office at814-946-4100.

Please find the original article here:

http://www.drivingambitioninc.com/blog/bid/56989/Top-10-Work-Zone-Safety-Tips-for-CDL-Drivers

Throwback Thursday: Editorial on Distracted Driving

Please enjoy our Throwback Thursday post a day late this weekend! Enjoy the weekend, everyone!

Pennsylvania has had a driving and texting ban that has been in effect since 2011.  However, many drivers continue to text on the road, as well as engage in other forms of distracted driving.  What have Pennsylvania and other states done to address this issue?  Some of the things that police have done include sitting in unmarked SUVs and riding city buses to be able to look down on drivers.  You might want to read this editorial, written in Lancaster Online, to find out more.  

 Distracted driving is a major cause of motor vehicle accidents on the highway.  If you have been injured as the result of a distracted driver, it might be time to consult an attorney.  Tractor-trailer drivers are also cited with distracted driving, and can leave devastation in their wake after a highway accident.  Attorney Doug Stoehr is a personal injury lawyer serving western and central Pennsylvania.  Please visit his website athttp://www.stoehrlaw.com for more information.

Winter Driving Requires a Different Kind of Technique!

You passed your PA driver's license test and are a good, safe driver. However, you might not know that there are a few factors that make winter driving a lot different than other seasons.  Here are some tips tha may be new to you and can save you and your passengers from injury in the future!  

  • You should always decrease your speed and leave at least three times more space than usual between you and the car in front of you.
  • Remember to brake gently to avoid skidding, and to use low gears to keep traction on hills.
  • Keep your lights and windshield clean to increase visibility.  
  • Be particularly careful on bridges and overpasses, which will freeze first.  
  • You should NEVER pass snow plows because it's likely that the road in front of the trucks is much worse than the road behind them.  
  • Of course, the best tip is, if you don't have to travel in winter weather...DON'T! 

However, despite our best efforts, sometimes an accident is unavoidable.  If an accident does occur it's important to know that Pennsylvania is a comparative negligence state.  Comparative negligence simply means that if your negligence contributed to the accident, your damages will then be reduced by the amount of your negligence.  So, please take every precaution to decrease the chances of contributing to an accident, and properly prepare your vehicle and yourself for the conditions ahead. 

Sharing the Road Safely: Semi Truck Drivers May Be A Risk

Cell phone use while driving is irresponsible, reckless, and a threat to the safety of the driver, their passengers, and other vehicles on the road.  Most drivers recognize these facts, however, many still choose to ignore safety laws and continue to text and talk on their cell phone while on the road.  Drivers of cars are not the only people who are guilty of not obeying the safety laws; semi-truck drivers have also been caught using their cell phones while driving.  As startling as this phenomenon seems, it is not uncommon on the highways.  As a result of this and in response to a semi-truck accident that was supposedly caused by a truck driver on his cell phone, the National Transportation Safety Board has recommended banning the use of cell phones for truckers nationwide (except for emergency purposes).   The accident, cited by the NTSB as a possible reason for cell phone bans for truckers, involved a truck driver who was talking on his phone while driving and caused an accident that killed 11 people.  Directly before the accident, the driver made a call and crossed a median on an interstate, crashing into a van carrying twelve people that were coming home from a wedding.


Attorney Doug Stoehr is a personal injury lawyer serving the western and central Pennsylvania area.  One of his major areas of practice is injury or death due to motor vehicle accidents.  He has noticed a trend of accidents involving cell phone usage, either talking or texting, and urges you not to use your phone while driving and be wary of other drivers on the road who may be using their phones.  For more information on his law firm, please click here.

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