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Spring Weather Can Make Driving Tricky!

The weather in spring, especially in early spring, can be wild and unpredictable.  From heavy snows, to sunshine, torrential rain, and/or wind, the weather can make home management and travel very difficult!  Are you prepared to handle the unique challenges that spring may make you face?  


One thing you can do to keep yourself safe is to have an emergency kit in both your house and your car.  Some things to include in your kit are items like a flashlight, batteries, bottled water, packaged food, a blanket, a first aid kit, and safety flares. If you are driving, it will be extremely important to monitor the road conditions and leave plenty of room between the cars around you.  This is especially true in times of heavy rain, slow, and/or sleet.  You will also have to engage in defensive driving and be aware of what other drivers around you are doing! Although you might be obeying common safety rules, you can't be certain that others around you are taking the same safety precautions.


it is your duty as a member of your community to drive your car safely, responsibly, and with regard for the well-being and safety of others.  This is especially true to remember in cases where you've been drinking! Call a designated driver and save the life of not only yourself, but other innocent bystanders.  Also play it safe and do not engage in distracted driving, such as talking on your cell phone or texting.


However, if you have been the victim of another's negligent driving, Attorney Doug Stoehr is a central PA area attorney who takes cases for automobile accident victims.  These cases may occur in situations where people have been injured or passed away due to the fault of another person, such as through car/pedestrian, bike, motorcycle, and truck accidents. For more information regarding his practice or to set up an initial consultation, please call his office at 814-946-4100.

"Daniel's Law" Passes in PA

As a heads up, you should know that on November 4th, Governor Wolf signed a bill known as "Daniel's Law" into effect.  This bill enforces harsher penalties on those who engage in distracted driving.  Within this bill, people who receive a distracted driving ticket will be punished similarly to those who engage in drunk driving.  This law was proposed after a Pennsylvanian named Daniel Gallatin was killed when a distracted driver crashed into the back of his motorcycle and killed him.  According to Governor Wolf, "This behavior, which has been allowed to go under-punished for far too long, has been demonstrated to be just as dangerous as drunk driving. Distracted driving has fatal, irreversible, and grave consequences and by signing this Bill I hope to make our roads and highways safer for our citizens, and everyone using them." (as quoted on PersonalInjury.com). 


We cannot stress to you enough how important it is to remain safe and alert while driving, especially during periods of increased motor activity like Thanksgiving and Christmas. Motor vehicle accidents, bicycle accidents, and pedestrian accidents can be easily prevented with a few simple, common-sense tips, such as not driving while fatigued or distracted, along with wearing your seatbelt. Attorney Douglas V. Stoehr works with clients who have been injured in motor vehicle, pedestrian, and bicycle accidents. If you feel that you have been wrongly hurt in an accident, please contact our office for a free consultation. Safe driving!

Auditors Reveal Nursing Home Complaints in PA

Sometimes, audits bring up things you would never believe.  According to TribLive.com, an auditor for the Pennsylvania Department of Health discovered that the department refused to accept anonymous complaints against nursing homes for almost three years.  Halting these complaints violates federal policy, and also potentially puts many elderly residents into harm's way.   There was no rationale discovered for halting these reports. According to the TribLive article, "Complaints increased 63 percent after the agency rescinded the policy of not accepting anonymous complaints, the audit said."  Many other interesting facts were discovered in the audit, including not enforcing certain laws requiring a set number of direct nursing services for residents each day. 


Elder abuse complaints can come in many forms, not just physical abuse.  Other, equally as damaging forms, of elder abuse can occur in settings such as nursing homes or hospitals.  Mental and psychological abuse, as well as financial and sexual abuse occur all too often to the elderly population.  If you feel that a loved one has been a victim of elder abuse, please contact Attorney Doug Stoehr to set up a free consultation.  Attorney Stoehr has experience and knowledge pertaining to elder abuse legal claims, and will work hard to fight for the rights of your family or friend. Call his office at 814-946-4100 to set up your consultation.  

Douglas V. Stoehr practices personal injury law in Duncansville and Altoona, Pennsylvania. He serves clients throughout western and central Pennsylvania, including Duncansville, Hollidaysburg, Altoona, Huntingdon, State College, Johnstown, Clearfield, Tyrone, Ebensburg, Northern Cambria, Portage, Windber, Carrolltown, Gallitzin, Saxton, Bellefonte, Centre Hall, Pine Grove Mills, Warriors Mark, Spruce Creek, Roaring Spring, Bellwood, Claysburg, Blue Knob, Lewistown, Mount Union, Belleville, McConnellsburg, Breezewood, Williamsburg, Windber, Punxsutawney Martinsburg, Somerset, Philipsburg, Everett, Williamsport, Cumberland, Oakland, Indiana, St. Mary's, Blair County, Cambria County, Huntingdon County, Clearfield County, Mifflin County, Jefferson County, Huntington County, Centre County, Bedford County, Somerset County and Fulton County.

To read the original article and to learn more about the audit in its entirety, please click here:
http://triblive.com/news/adminpage/10850267-74/depasquale-complaints-agency

What To Do After A Bike Accident

So you've been in a bike crash. It's scary, disorienting, and you're not sure what to do next. What are some good steps to take post-crash? Take a look at these tips:


  • Make sure to get checked out by a doctor, even if you don't think you've been seriously injured. Sometimes, your brain can't process the pain right away and you may be more seriously hurt than you realize. It's better to be safe than sorry!
  • Also, make sure to let the driver know that they hit you. Don't be rude or combative, but make them aware that they hit you. Gather their contact information, including insurance, and give them yours.
  • Make sure that the police are aware of the accident. Call them at the scene. Also check and see if there are any witnesses nearby that may be able to provide information, too. Keep the crash scene intact so the police can survey the scene when they arrive. 
  • As the post-accident consequences unfold, make sure to document everything you can. This may include things like taking pictures of your bicycle, the scene, and injuries. It is also good to hold on to any paper documents, like the accident report, medical expenses, and other miscellaneous information.


It is also important to note that, if the situation becomes more complicated and/or you are severely injured, you should not be afraid to see legal consult. In our Altoona, PA area, Attorney Stoehr is a personal injury lawyer who is skilled in taking cases for victims of bicycle accidents. He takes cases in central Pennsylvania through Pittsburgh. For more information or to schedule your free consultation, pleas call his firm at 814-946-4100

Police Misconduct and Victims' Rights

Most of our law enforcement officers work tirelessly and diligently to keep our homes, community, state, and country safe.  However, police are people just like the rest of us, and can sometimes make poor choices.  

Do you know your rights if you've been a victim of police misconduct? Sometimes, police officers can violate your civil rights, such as using excessive or unreasonable force, falsely arresting and imprisoning, and maliciously prosecuting.  Although the police obviously have the right to arrest when they reasonably believe that an individual has committed a crime, this does not give them the right to arrest someone without probable cause.  Additionally, in the case of excessive force, FindLaw.com's website states that "If the amount of force was reasonable, it doesn't matter that the officer's intentions were bad. But the reverse is also true: if the officer had good intentions, but used unreasonable force, the excessive force claim will not be dismissed."  

Would you like to learn more about what your rights are after police misconduct? Please call our office at 814-946-4100.  Our Altoona, PA area law firm has handled similar cases and will review your case to see what your rights are! Douglas V. Stoehr serves personal injury clients throughout western and central Pennsylvania. 
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