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car accident Archives

PA's Distracted Driving Laws

Unfortunately, PA seems relative lenient on distracted driving use compared to other states.  This is a dangerous and significant problem when it comes to the safety of drivers on our state's roads.  Interestingly enough, PA does not currently have a law that prohibits drivers from using their cell phones while they're driving.  Instead, PA only has a texting law that prohibits sending and receiving text messages.  This means that drivers can still use social media, take pictures, or use other phone features while driving.  Additionally, the fines imposed if you are caught texting while driving are minimal compared to other states.  Across the state, over 18,000 citations have been issued over the past five years, and the total amount issued has increased by almost 120%.  Almost all people cited were males, and most were in their 20s.  

Car Accidents At A Low Speed

Ever wonder if the impacts of a car crash are less if you're moving at a lower speed?  Well, research shows that even a low speed collision can lead to large and significant medical issues down the road.  For example, you may think that it's safer to drive through neighborhoods and small towns where the speed limit is much lower than on the highways.  However, that's not necessarily true.  As stated in 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."  Furthermore, many of these accidents are accounted for by people driving large vehicles (trucks, SUVs, and vans). One theory is that these big cars are harder to see over and, therefore, make the drivers more likely to hit people who are walking nearby.  

Regardless of the season, 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

Car Crash Ejects One From Vehicle

Unfortunately, a recent accident in Clearfield County is making the local news.  According to reports, a driver under the influence of drugs and/or alcohol did not stop at a stop sign, and consequently hit another car.  The other car had two people inside, and one of them was thrown through the side window and went to the hospital to receive care.   Police continue to investigate the incident.

Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol is a significant cause of car crashes across the state.  If you are a victim of a car crash due to another's negligent driving practices, and have sustained injuries, it may be time to seek legal advice. Attorney Doug Stoehr is your experienced Altoona, PA area injury attorney who can review your claim.  Call his office at 814-946-4100 to learn more and discuss your potential case.

Original article may be found here:  https://www.wearecentralpa.com/news/local-news/car-accident-in-clearfield-sends-one-person-through-passenger-window/

Chronic Pain Following A Car Wreck

If you or someone you know has ever been in a car crash, the idea that chronic pain often follows an accident may seem like common sense.  However, did you know that car crash victims have over an 84% increased risk of experiencing chronic pain?  This is one of the many new aspects of a research study going on in University of Aberdeen School of Medicine, Scotland.  Researchers from the university have been studying chronic pain as it relates to many different types of accidents and injuries. The focus of their studies include areas like car accidents, workplace injuries, fractured bones, surgical operations, childbirth, and other miscellaneous hospitalizations. Their study involved interviewing patients across multiple years. They interviewed over 200 patients three times over a period of four years. Their results may be surprising!  In addition to the car crash statistic listed above, over 30% of patients who were victims of any kind of trauma were more likely to experience a new onset of chronic pain following their trauma.  However, there was no significant link between childbirth or surgery and chronic pain.  

Low Speed Doesn't Mean A Lack of Injuries

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.

How Cars and Motorcyclists Can Share The Road

Sometimes, motorcyclists get a bad reputation while driving on the road.  However, it is the responsibility of both motorcycle and car drivers to maintain safe practices while driving on the road.  Although this can be tricky at times, a few tips may help make it easier for both of these drivers to share the road in a safe manner:

Fourth of July Driving Safety Tips

Are you planning on driving somewhere to celebrate during our Fourth of July holiday?  It is important to be especially cautious during this holiday time period.  Others who are out celebrating may be be driving under the influence and/or making other similarly unsafe choices. In an effort to keep yourself safe on the road, here are some tips from a local news article out of New Bern, NC:

Motorcycle Accident Statistics

In an effort to raise motorcycle safety awareness, we are highlighting some common themes that tend to occur when a motorcycle accident occurs, as well as some safety statistics.   It is so important to respectfully share the road with other vehicle and motorcycle drivers in an effort to prevent accidents on the road.  Motorcyclists and bicyclists may be particularly vulnerable to injury due to to their exposure to the outside elements when they're riding.  According to an article cited at the bottom of this post, here are some interesting facts relating to motorcycle accidents:

Car Accidents Rise In The Summer

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. 

Safest Spots In A Car

Have you ever wondered which seats in your car are the safest in the event of an accident?  A recent report from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety examined this question and found some interesting results.  According to their research, passengers in the back seat may be at heightened risk for serious injury or death in a head-on collision as opposed to travelers in the front seat.  Although these results may seem like the opposite of what you might expect, researchers are attributing the risk to back seat passengers based on several factors.  Many seatbelts in the back seat are not designed well for passengers, which may increase their risk for injury.  Most research and crash tests tend to focus on the safety of front seat passengers as opposed to back seat passengers.  Seatbelt safety technology has improved greatly over the years for those in the front seat, but these same technological advances are not always used in the back seat, too.  Additionally, seatbelt tensions do not always react the same way in the back seat, which sometimes makes restraints too loose or too tight in the event of a collision.  Additionally, there are no front airbags in the back seat.

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