Personal Injury

July 23rd, 2019 by Rieders Travis in Personal Injury

Is There a Solution to Parking Shortages for Large Trucks in Pennsylvania? The shortage of parking places for large trucks in Pennsylvania has created dangerous conditions for all motorists. Truck drivers can drive only so far before becoming fatigued and having to stop for necessities such as food, water, gas, bathrooms, and sleep, but the facilities for parking vehicles legally and safely are woefully inadequate. According to the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDot), shortfalls in parking capacity in heavily traveled corridors may exceed triple the amount of available parking spaces.  On the Pennsylvania turnpike alone, there is a deficit of 890 parking spots for trucks, and frustrated truckers wind up leaving their vehicles wherever they can, usually alongside the highways or on ramps.  This creates problems for both truckers and motorists who have to navigate a maze of large vehicles parked where they do not belong.  In addition, trucks pulling back onto the road from unsafe parking can cause crashes. Any crash involving largely trucks is likely to be devastating and result in serious injuries or death. According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (https://www.iihs.org/iihs), 3,986 people died in…

What Does Roundup Verdict Mean for Future Lawsuits?

October 22nd, 2018 by Rieders Travis in Personal Injury, Products Liability

What Does Roundup Verdict Mean for Future Lawsuits?
Roundup Verdict in California and Future Lawsuits Roundup is a product commonly used by homeowners and commercial landscapers to kill weeds, but it has also been accused of killing people. Multiple lawsuits have been filed in recent years contending that Roundup (or glyphosate, the active ingredient in Roundup) is “dangerous to human health, unfit and unsuitable to be marketed and sold in commerce, and that it lacked proper warnings and directions as to the dangers associated with its use.” Now, a jury at the Superior Court of California in San Francisco has decided in favor of a plaintiff who alleged that Roundup caused his cancer. The jury awarded Dewayne Johnson $289 million in damages, $250 million of which is intended to punish Monsanto, the company that makes the herbicide. This verdict sets a precedent for thousands of other cases that similarly claim that Roundup causes non-Hodgkin's lymphoma, an aggressive cancer that starts in the body’s immune system. After the trial, Monsanto issued a statement saying that it stands by the studies that suggest Roundup does not cause cancer. The company intends to appeal this decision and continue to defend the…

What Is the New Fireworks Law in Pennsylvania?

June 28th, 2018 by Rieders Travis in Personal Injury

What Is the New Fireworks Law in Pennsylvania?
Setting off fireworks can be fun and exciting, but it can also be dangerous, and a new Pennsylvania law that went into effect October 30, 2017, makes it even more so. The law broadened the legal use of fireworks and slapped a new 12 percent tax on those purchases. The tax will help plug the budget deficit and provide grants to emergency medical services and volunteer fire departments. However, expanding fireworks use also increases the chance of causing injuries and damage. Under the new law, Pennsylvania residents, previously restricted to using items like sparklers, now are allowed to purchase consumer-grade fireworks like Roman candles and bottle rockets that fly into the air. Previously, these items were available only to out-of-state shoppers. While residents can now enjoy the freedom to create beautiful fireworks displays, this comes at a price. Once lit, these items are difficult to control and can cause injuries and fires. According to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) fireworks report, in 2013 alone U.S. emergency rooms treated 11,400 people for fireworks-related injuries. An estimated 55% involved injury to arms, hands and legs, while 38% were to the head.…

Why You Should Test Your Residence For Radon

February 16th, 2018 by Rieders Travis in Personal Injury

You may not know it, but your home could be dangerous to your health. Radon, a colorless, odorless, tasteless, radioactive gas produced during the natural decay of uranium in rock and soil, may be present in your home in an amount that can potentially lead to lung cancer.

You may not know it, but your home could be dangerous to your health. Radon, a colorless, odorless, tasteless, radioactive gas produced during the natural decay of uranium in rock and soil, may be present in your home in an amount that can potentially lead to lung cancer. According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA), approximately 21,000 deaths each year are attributable to radon-induced lung cancer. It is the second leading cause of lung cancer in Pennsylvania, second only to smoking. The Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (DEP), estimates that 40% of Pennsylvania homes contain unsafe levels of radon gas, which can move up into homes via cracks, drains, or any openings in the foundation. For this reason, it pays to test your residence for the presence of radon. If you or a loved one has suffered injury because you bought a home which was found to have high levels of radon and this was not disclosed to you by the seller or the seller’s realtor, you may be entitled to compensation. The skilled and experienced Pennsylvania personal injury attorney Clifford A. Rieders of Rieders, Travis, Humphrey, Waters & Dohrmann has spent…

NEGLIGENCE-CAUSATION-FACTUAL CAUSE, DEFINITION

January 10th, 2018 by Rieders Travis in Personal Injury

Roverano v. John Crane, 2017 Pa. Super. LEXIS 1110 (December 28, 2017) (per curiam).  This was an asbestos case in which the Superior Court affirmed in part, reversed in part and remanded for new trial to apportion damages among tortfeasors.  William Roverano was employed at PECO from 1971 until his retirement in 2001.  He developed lung cancer.  Many of the defendants filed for bankruptcy.  All of the defendants except the two that went to trial settled prior to the jury verdict.  The plaintiffs’ experts said that it was both the smoking and exposure to products that caused lung cancer.  The jury returned a verdict for Mr. Roverano and his wife.  The court apportioned the judgment equally among the 8 defendants whom the jury determined to be tortfeasors.  This resulted in a separate entry of judgment against the two remaining defendants for a reduced amount. 1. The court properly charged on factual cause.  The Court did not specifically refer to the Standard Jury Instruction, but that is what was approved.  The court rejected defendant’s request for a “but for causation” jury charge.  The Pennsylvania Supreme Court has clearly rejected such a…

Distracted Walking

October 26th, 2016 by Rieders Travis in Personal Injury

PA Distracted Walking Accident Lawyer
Walking can be dangerous to your health -- especially when you or someone else is not paying attention. Walkers who are distracted, usually because they are making calls or texting on mobile phones, have suffered cuts and bruises, sustained serious head injuries or even been killed. They are particularly vulnerable when walking in urban areas, crossing busy streets and negotiating traffic.  They suffer injuries from walking into objects and people, and sometimes even from walking off a curb, bridge, train platform or cliff. And they may cause accidents for motorists when they unexpectedly dart out into traffic. On the other hand, pedestrians almost always have the right of way, unless they are not walking in a crosswalk. As Justice Musmanno famously said involving an intoxicated pedestrian: A drunk pedestrian is just as entitled to a safe place as anyone else, and more in need of it. While that is a paraphrase of the great Justice’s thinking, too many drivers are completely oblivious or even resentful of pedestrians, bikers, and other people who are not in a vehicle.  Sometimes this is even worse with SUV drivers, who feel that they are the king or queen of…

Octave ex rel. Octave v. Walker, 103 A.2d 1255 (Pa. 2014) Case Summary

February 23rd, 2015 by Rieders Travis in Personal Injury

An estate filed a negligence suit to recover for physical injuries sustained by James Octave upon being struck by a tractor-trailer driven by David Walker.  The state police concluded that Octave attempted to commit suicide by jumping under the truck's trailer.  The estate said that defendant Walker could not obtain information about Octave's prior psychiatric history because of the Mental Health Procedures Act.  The court distinguished this case from those where mental health records are sought but are not necessary to establish any claim or defense.  In fact, this is a very limited ruling.  The court said that in terms of obtaining mental health records in personal injury litigation, a patient waives his confidentiality protections under the MHPA where judged by an objective standard, he knew or reasonably should have known his mental health would be placed directly at issue by filing the lawsuit.  Disinterested eyewitnesses said that James Octave attempted to commit suicide by jumping under the truck's trailer.  This put the estate on notice that if they filed a civil action, a suicide defense would likely be advanced.  There was a history of suicidal ideations that might be…