Douglas V. Stoehr, Attorney at Law
Free Case Evaluation
814-946-4100
No Recovery / No Fee
Super Lawyers

National Group to Study Trucking Habits

Earlier this month, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) announced they they are planning to survey tractor-trailer drivers to see how long their commute is to their trucking jobs, especially if their commute is greater than 2.5 hours.  This survey is part of a larger study that is examining commuting time as it relates to driver fatigue and safety.  FMCSA plans to get feedback not only on commuting time, but also work history, schedules, annual miles they drive, and their break and rest periods.  


Unfortunately, commercial truck drivers are a common cause of motor vehicle accidents on our roads and highways. Many times, these commercial drivers are fatigued and are driving above the mandated allotment of hours. Sometimes, they are also driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol.  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:
https://www.ccjdigital.com/fmcsa-to-study-truck-drivers-commuting-habits-safety-impacts/undefined

Ice and Snow May Mean "Slow!"

Are you up-to-date on winter safety practices? During this season, people have to take extra precautions due to the weather.  This is especially true when you are out walking.  According to our own regional UPMC website, there are many preventative measures you can take to prevent winter accidents.  Some of their suggestions include:

  • Make sure that you're consistently wearing boots or other slip-resistant shoes
  • Take extra precautions when entering and exiting your car
  • Watch for slippery floors at entrance points of homes and other buildings
  • Try to avoid carrying items, or walking with your hands in your pockets. This allows you to keep your hands and arms free for balance. 
  • As always, be careful of black ice.
  • Tap your feet on the ground to test for slippery areas, and walk flat footed if that area is icy.

If you have slipped and fell on the property of another, you may be entitled to compensation for medical bills and potential pain and suffering.  This may include cases where sidewalks were improperly maintained due to the winter weather, such as failure to remove snow and ice.   Attorney Doug Stoehr takes cases for clients who have sustained slip-and-fall injuries due to the fault or negligence of another.  For more information on his Altoona, PA area practice, please call his firm at 814-946-4100.

To read more from the UPMC article, please click here

Woman Injured at Kohls Seeks Lawsuit

Recently, a PA woman sued Kohl's department store after she was knocked over by a restocking cart.  According to records, the woman went to a Kohl's store in November 2015 to do some Christmas shopping.  She was approaching a price scanning kiosk to check an item's price when she was knocked over by a Kohl's employee who was pushing a restocking cart full of upright vacuum cleaners.  The woman sustained significant damage to her body, especially her right side.  Over the past two years since the incident, the woman reports that she has nerve damage in her right leg, which significantly weakens her right leg and ankle.  She also stated that her injuries negatively impact her ability to care for her 96-year-old mother, for whom she is the primary caretaker.  

Personal injuries can happen when you least expect them.  This includes situations in which you are injured on the property of another, such as through improperly maintained parking lots, sidewalks, and entryways, as well as when potentially dangerous areas are not clearly marked.  If you've suffered a personal injury due to the fault of another, it may be time to consult an attorney.  Attorney Doug Stoehr is skilled in handling personal injury cases across the central and western Pennsylvania area.  If you are interested in talking more about your potential legal claim, please call his Altoona, PA firm at 814-946-4100.

For more from the original article, please click here

England Is Revolutionizing Pedestrian Safety

There are many differences between the United Kingdom and the United States, but one of the latest differences comes from how pedestrian crosswalks are handled.  According to a recent article, a London company recently developed a "smart" pedestrian crossing zone. In this new zone, technology, including LED lights and cameras, are used to keep pedestrians and drivers safe. One of the features includes accounting for walkers looking down at their cell phones, which causes a warning light to come into the pedestrian's field of vision and veers them away from the road.  Another feature includes creating a virtual buffer around children who may run into the street.  Drivers and bikers on the road would see the danger ahead on the road and know to avoid the child. An additional great aspect is alerting drivers and cyclists when a pedestrian is in their blind spot.  

Currently, PA pedestrian law states that "When traffic-control signals are not in place or not in operation, the driver of a vehicle shall yield the right-of-way to a pedestrian crossing the roadway within any marked crosswalk or within any unmarked crosswalk at an intersection." However, pedestrians need to do their part to remain safe, too. The law additionally states that "No pedestrian shall suddenly leave a curb or other place of safety and walk or run into the path of a vehicle which is so close as to constitute a hazard."

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.

For more about the "smart" crosswalks in England, please click here

Large Trucks on the Road

Have you ever wondered how many tractor-trailer and large vehicle accidents occur on the road each year?  The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration has compiled data from 1975-2014 to track trends in vehicle safety and crashes.  Here are some of the highlights of their findings:

  • In 2014, almost 4,000 large trucks and buses were involved in fatal accidents
  • From 2013-2014, the number of large trucks involved in injury crashes increased by 21% (88,000 accidents in all).  There were also 346,000 large trucks involved in property damage during that time. 
  • Vehicle miles traveled (VMT) by large trucks increased by 1.5 percent from 2013-2014

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.

To read more of the FMCSA's statistics, please click here

Halloween and Premises Liability

 If you are expecting to welcome trick or treaters onto your property this Halloween, there are a couple things that you should be aware of.   First, if you are a homeowner, you have a responsibility to keep your property safe for anyone entering your property.  These people are owed a duty to be protected from certain dangerous conditions that you either caused or created, know about, or should have known about.  These types of cases are known as premises liability cases, or more commonly, "slip and fall" cases.  Second, you could be responsible for injuries if it happens on your property, and you breached the duty owed to the people entering your property.  At the law firm of Douglas V. Stoehr, we have experience in handling premises liability or "slip and fall" cases, but we would prefer that no one gets injured this Halloween.  We can provide a few tips for you to keep in mind while decorating, and getting ready to hand out candy:  
  • Make sure that your walkway, sidewalk and/or steps are well-lit and visible from the street to your front door.
  • Make sure that any dangerous conditions on walkways, sidewalks and steps are repaired or marked clearly to let people know of the dangerous conditions
  • Remove anything that may cause an individual to trip or fall while on your property, i.e., decorations and extension cords. 
If you or a family member is a victim of a premises liability or "slip and fall" case, please call Attorney Doug Stoehr's Altoona, PA area firm at 814-946-4100 to discuss your potential claim.   As always, remember to have fun and be safe out there this Halloween.  

Car Seat Picture Goes Viral

In case you ever needed another reason to make sure that your children are properly secure in their carseats, look no further than this article.  A PA mother posted a picture on social media that showed the wreckage of her car after an accident next to a picture of her children's intact car seats.  To take a look at the picture and read more about the article, please click here

It is very important to remember that all babies and toddlers should be strapped into appropriate and properly installed car seats.  Older children should also use a booster seat.  Obviously, make sure that all children (and all passengers in general) are wearing their seat belts. It's also important to keep younger children away from airbags, which could do more harm than good in a crash.  You as a driver also need to do your part to drive safely and defensively.  Children should know that when you're driving, you will not be able to turn around to help them, check on them, give them food, etc.  Your focus needs to be on the road to keep your car, and other vehicles, on the road safe! 

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.

Autumn Is A Dangerous Season For Driving

Autumn is fast approaching, which means cooler weather, changing leaves, and football. Unfortunately, it also means that certain kinds of accidents are also on the rise.  One of these potentially deadly types of accidents is pedestrian accidents.  According to data compiled by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, pedestrian accidents are the most likely to happen during the fall months.  Take a look at some of these statistics highlighted in one of their reports from a few years ago:

  • Friday and Saturday have higher fatality rates than any other day of the week. 
  • October, November, and December have higher fatality rates than any other month. 
  • On average, 13 pedestrians die in vehicle crashes each day, or one pedestrian every 107 minutes. 
  • Bad weather does not necessarily contribute to a pedestrian death, but a bad light condition does. 
  • Nearly 46 percent of pedestrian fatalities are alcohol-involved. 
  • One in five pedestrians killed were killed in hit-and-run motor vehicle crashes. 
  • Autumn is the deadliest season for pedestrians, with two of the highest fatality months being October and November. 
  • The number of pedestrians killed between 6 p.m. and 9 p.m. is greater than during any other 3-hour time frame. 

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.

Another Pedestrian Accident Occurs in PA

Last month, a person was injured in a serious pedestrian accident in Allegheny County.  A person was walking across the road when they were struck by a car.  At the time of the news report, there was no information about the driver of the vehicle who struck the walker. When the article was released, the victim was originally thought to be dead,  but the report was later corrected and reflected that the victim was alive, but suffered injuries. 


It is extremely unfortunate that things like this continue to happen in our community.  It is your responsibility as a licensed driver in the state of Pennsylvania to not only drive your care with care and caution, but also be aware of other hazards on the road.  Drivers frequently share the road with bicyclists, motorcycle drivers, and pedestrians, especially in more residential areas.


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.


Attorney Doug Stoehr is a central PA area attorney who takes cases where people have been injured or passed away due to the fault of another person, such as through ca, /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.

To read the original article, please click here:
http://pittsburgh.cbslocal.com/2017/07/27/bethel-park-fatal-pedestrian-accident/

Large Settlement for York, PA Man's Premises Liability Injury

Premises liability cases are more common than what many people may think. This one particular case, however, resulted in a very large claim for a York, PA man. According to news reports, an 80-year-old man was at a shopping center in York Township when he tripped over an unmarked step, and his head and face went into the edge of a chair of a neighboring tattoo parlor. The corresponding fall did extensive damage, including the loss of vision in one eye. This injury left him functionally blind. After the man took legal action, he was recently awarded four million dollars for injuries. For more on the news report, please click here.

Slip and fall injuries may result from improper care or maintenance of indoor and outdoor facilities, like floors, sidewalks, driveways, and/or steps. Owners may not promptly shovel their sidewalks, pour rock salt on their steps, or fail to perform other types of common and expected interior and exterior maintenance measures. If an injury occurs due to the improper maintenance of such areas, the owners of the property may be liable for the injury. Failure to identify potential hazards (such as steps) is also the responsibility of the building/land owner.

If you or a loved one has sustained an injury from a slip and fall or premises liability accident, it might be time to consult with an attorney. Attorney Doug Stoehr is a personal injury lawyer located in Altoona, PA who serves the western and central Pennsylvania area. For more information on his legal practice, please call his office at 814-946-4100. 

BACK TO TOP