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Top Causes of Teen Summer Driving Accidents

Many of us know that summer is a big season for teen driving accidents, since students are out of school and on the roads more frequently.  However, did you know what the major causes of teen driving accidents in the summer are? AAA has compiled some data to take a look at this phenomenon, what the causes of accidents are, and how we can help prevent them.  According to their study, the top causes for teen driving accidents in the summer are 1) talking or getting something for someone else in the vehicle, 2) using their cell phones to talk, text, and/or use an app, and 3) attending/looking for something else inside of the vehicle.  

How can we help teens become more responsible drivers?  There are many ways, including modeling good behavior when you are driving, using apps to help teens minimize their use of cell phones while driving (such as rewarding apps for not opening their cell phone while they drive, or apps that lock the phone while the car is in motion), and keeping open lines of communication with your teen about the dangers and risks of driving while distracted. 

It is important to note that 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 office at 814-946-4100 for more information.

Tires Can Be Big Factor In Summer Accidents

Are you aware of the stress that is placed on your tires when driving in the summer? Although you should always be aware of your tire pressure and regularly check your tires, it's very important in the summer. Many tires blow out as a result of the summer heat, which can pose a danger to your car and other cars traveling on the road with you. Especially when your tires are under-inflated, the hot air can cause internal heat to build up inside the tire, which can lead to a tire blowout. 

Tire blowouts can lead your car to go out of control, endangering the lives of your passengers and other cars on the road.  It is your responsibility as a driver to keep your car in good, safe working order in an effort to minimize harm to everyone on the road.   Car accidents are a very real danger when driving, no matter on the highway or on a secluded country road.  The physical and psychological damage caused by car accidents can be extensive and result in years of medical and professional care.  If you or a loved one has been injured in a car crash that was the fault of another, Attorney Doug Stoehr would be willing to set up a free consultation to discuss a possible legal claim involving your accident.  Attorney Stoehr has experience litigating personal injury claims relating to car crashes, and if you would like to meet with him, please contact our law office at 814-946-4100.

Low Speed Collisions Can Still Cause Significant Damage

Even if you are hit by a car traveling at a low speed, it can still mean big medical problems if you are involved in an accident.  You may think you're safer and at a lower risk for accidents when traveling in residential neighborhoods where the speed limit is lower, and in some ways it's true. However, in some situations, it may not be.  According to a Forbes article, "At low speeds, below about 15 miles per hour (m.p.h.), risks are low and increase relatively slowly with small increments in speed.  However, as speed increases above 15 m.p.h., small changes in speed yield relatively large increases in risk.  The death rate more than doubles for pedestrians when speed increases from 25 to 35 m.p.h." It is also interesting to note that about 40% of vehicle accidents are accounted for by people driving vans, SUVs, and trucks.  These bigger vehicles may reduce visibility and make it harder to see adults and small children who are walking nearby.


As our families are outside more in the summer months, it is very important to pay attention to your surroundings while you are out driving, walking, and biking. If you hit another person or car, you could cause severe and lasting injury, as well as significant psychological and emotional distress to the victim and their families.  Victims of accidents injured due to the fault of another may 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 victims of personal injury. If you would like to consult with him about your case, please contact our law office.


To read the Forbes article, please go here:
https://www.forbes.com/sites/tanyamohn/2011/09/30/low-driving-speed-can-cause-serious-pedestrian-injury-and-death-report-finds/#1565daa457ff

Apps to Reduce Distracted Driving

Did you know that there are apps you can download to help you be a safer driver?  DMV.org listed some apps that you can put on your phone to keep you safer and less distracted when driving down our nation's roads.  Some of the apps block text messages while you're driving, while others send out notifications when you've left and arrived at your destination safely.  Others share your location and reward you for the numbers of safe miles that you've driven! Read more here to figure out which apps may be right for you and your family members.  


It is important to note that 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 office at 814-946-4100 for more information.

Collisions Increase In The Summer Months

You may not know this, but the warmer weather also brings about a rise in traffic accidents and tickets.  An article written by Insurance Hotline reported that almost 27% of tickets and 27% of car accidents occur during July, August, and September.  Many people believe this rise in ticketing is due to summer travel and tourism, which is coupled with increased road construction in the summer.  It is also likely that people are less cautious when driving in the summer, because the roads are generally clear and dry. No matter the cause, these statistics are reason enough to be extra cautious when you are driving around with your family this spring and summer. 


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, your family, and yourself for the conditions ahead. If you are injured in a vehicle accident, please allow Attorney Douglas V. Stoehr to review your claim by calling our Altoona, PA law firm at 814-946-4100.

Beware of "Frontover" Accidents!

Be aware of the front end of your car when driving and pulling out of spaces!  A local Pittsburgh news article highlighted the growing number of "frontover" accidents, in which a driver doesn't see a person (especially a child) in front of their car and pulls out, hitting the person.  These accidents are becoming increasingly common as people are now driving much larger vehicles than the typical sedans of the past. It is notable that, according to some reports, about 80% of these types of accidents involve larger vehicles like SUVs and trucks. The blind zones in front of these types of cars can be up to 8 feet long. 


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 the original article, please go here:
http://pittsburgh.cbslocal.com/2017/05/08/increasing-number-of-children-killed-in-frontover-accidents/

May Is Motorcycle Safety Month

The month of May is designated as Motorcycle Safety Month, which means that it's the time of year when motorcycles tend to increase on our state's roads.  It is important for both motorcycle and car drivers to be aware of each other and follow a few basic safety tips to keep everyone alert and safe on the road! Wear your helmet, give other cars and riders plenty of room, and share the road.  Motorcycle riders can also take free refresher classes through the PA Motorcycle Safety Program.


Unfortunately, not only do cars frequently hit motorcycles, but tour bus and commercial truck drivers are a significant cause of accidents as well, especially on our state's 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. 


In addition, wearing a helmet is a common safety procedure that this law office feels should be followed at all times to protect yourself, whether you are on a bicycle or a motorcycle. However, we recognize that, at this time, mandatory helmet laws for those over 21 are not yet in effect in all areas of the country. We also strongly feel that motorcyclists, cars, and bicyclists should share the road in a responsible and respectful manner. If you are a motorcyclist who has been wrongfully injured in a motor vehicle accident and may suffer from a spinal cord, brain, or other serious injury, please contact our law office at 814-946-4100 for a consultation at no cost to you.

Taxi Hits Two Pedestrians In Pittsburgh

In Pittsburgh, news reports note that a taxi hit two pedestrians last month.  One of the pedestrians unfortunately passed away as a result.  According to reports of the accident, the taxi initially collided with another car before going onto the curb.  It then hit the walkers as they were crossing the street. The accident caused a section of the city to close and many emergency responders quickly arrived at the scene.  Sadly, this is a situation which likely could have been avoided if drivers had taken more care in the city steets.  

Pedestrian accidents are frightening and occur without warning.  Additionally, the consequences of pedestrian accidents can also be emotionally and physically damaging. Attorney Doug Stoehr is a lawyer specializing in personal injury and services the western and central Pennsylvania area.  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 at 814-946-4100.

Take Care With Spinal Cord Injuries

If you've ever been in an accident, such as a car or bicycle accident, you know how painful and persistent those injuries can be.  However, if you also happened to have injured your spine, the lasting damages can be even more severe. What are some of the expenses that occur after you've injured your spine? Take a look below.  

Medical treatment alone following a spinal injury can be exceptionally expensive, and requires a good deal of extended care.  You may require rehabilitation, mental health counseling, medication, and potentially permanent changes in your lifestyle and mobility. If you are permanently paralyzed, your medical expenses may total over $1,000,000 in your first year post-injury alone.  Some of your treatment costs may not be covered by insurance.  Additionally, you may find yourself paying large sums for lots of little add-on costs, such as gas to and from visits, meals while you're out, and wear and tear on your cars.  Of course, spinal injuries often also lead to a loss of income or a change in the ability to perform your job. 

If you've been in an accident, such as a motor vehicle or bike accident, and have suffered a spinal injury as a result, it may be time to consult an attorney.  Attorney Doug Stoehr is a central Pennsylvania lawyer who is skilled in handling these types of legal claims.  Call his office today at 814-946-4100 for a free initial consultation at his Altoona, PA firm. 

PA Drivers Can "Ride On Red"!

Heads up, everyone! A new state law went into effect this past week. Called the "Ride on Red" law, it allows PA drivers to go through some red lights.  The law states that if a stop light isn't responsive and if no one else is coming around you, you can legally drive through the intersection on the red light.  It's consider a common sense law to alleviate some problems in vehicles that can't be detected by the existing red light system, such as motorcycles. Use common sense and caution when taking advantage of this law!

Although this new law is now in effect, 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. 

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