PENNSYLVANIANS LOVE THEIR RECREATIONAL VEHICLES AND ENJOYING THE GREAT OUTDOORS – UNTIL SOMETHING GOES WRONG DUE TO SOMEONE’S NEGLIGENCE OR A PRODUCTS DEFECT AND THEY SUFFER A DEVASTATING CRASH AND INJURY.
Pop-up campers, camper vans, fifth wheels, and motorhomes may have long braking distances, poor maneuverability, and large blind spots, and they can be easy to overload and roll over due to their higher center of gravity. Small recreational vehicles such as All-Terrain Vehicles (ATVs) are heavier, faster, and more powerful than they used to be, and, with some current models capable of 100 miles per hour, they are increasingly dangerous. This is also true of watercraft such as jet-skis.
It is not surprising that between 1982 and 2014, more than 13,600 people nationwide lost their lives in ATV-related crashes. Pennsylvania ranked third in the nation, with 682 deaths, behind only Texas and California. Since ATVs offer less protection than an ordinary vehicle, surviving a crash can bring severe head, neck and internal injuries or even lead to brain or spinal cord injuries or paralysis.
People enjoying their RVs sometimes forget to be responsible, follow the rules, and operate their vehicles in a safe manner, and others sharing the road may act unsafely as well. If their negligence results in serious harm, permanent damage or death, they must be held responsible.
Our attorneys at Rieders, Travis, Dohrmann, Mowrey, Humphrey & Waters know the courts and the system and what you need to do to increase your chances of winning a good settlement or at trial. Our attorneys represent people who have been harmed in crashes involving recreational vehicles, including:
- Large RVs and campers
- All-terrain vehicles (ATVs)
- Dirt bikes
We offer a free consultation to carefully examine the individual facts in your case and determine the best way to handle it. Contact us today by calling (570) 323-8711 or by using our online contact form to set up your free consultation.
What are Problems With Large RVs?
Any vehicle crash can injure, maim, and kill, but when large RVs or vehicles pulling campers and trailers are involved, the consequences can be disastrous. There are additional dangers associated with these and other modified vehicles, since they serve the purpose of being both automobile and a movable home. Features like propane tanks, power generators, and appliances increase the potential risks in a crash.
Increased dangers include:
- Fires from propane and fuel systems that are not properly protected
- Instability of a large vehicle, especially on bumpy or dirt roads, or if there are problems with tires such as blowouts or de-treading
- Structural defects that may not be strong enough to withstand a crash
- Not using safety equipment such as seat belts as passengers move around the vehicle
- Distracted driving, especially if drivers are elderly, tired, or have hearing and vision defects
- Potential for roll-over accidents due to the higher center of gravity
- Danger due to large blind spots and difficulties navigating narrow roads or tight turns.
ATVs and Dirt Bikes
ATVs and dirt bikes are not allowed on Pennsylvania roads, but young, immature riders often take chances and endanger themselves, motorists and pedestrians. Unsafe behavior has led to the confiscation of more than 100 dirt bikes and ATVs by Philadelphia authorities in just one year.
Snowmobiles may crash with fixed objects, other snowmobiles, and vehicles, often due to unsafe speed and intoxication. Young people over 16 are allowed to ride a snowmobile without a license or training, and they may be prone to errors of judgment. Pennsylvania snowmobilers are required to register their machines with the Department of Conservation and Natural Resources, and if they will be operated off the owner’s private property, they must be covered by liability insurance and wear a helmet.
What to Do In Case of a Crash
If you or a loved one was involved in a recreational vehicle accident you should first get medical help for your injuries. You should also get legal representation before you talk to an insurance company in order to protect your rights and maximize the compensation you receive. Insurance companies will try tactics such as trying to shift responsibility or getting you to accept the lowest settlement, and our attorneys have the skills and experience to help ensure you get the best settlement possible.
Pennsylvania has special laws pertaining to off-road vehicles and use of such vehicles on private land. Cliff Rieders was instrumental in actually writing and correcting that legislation so that it would have less of an effect on the innocent injured users. However, these laws are specialized and it is important that the lawyer know how they work and apply in your situation. There is special legislation addressing recreational use of land and water, equestrian (horseback riding), and a variety of other matters even such as ski resorts.
Achieving Results When it Counts
The skilled and experienced Pennsylvania RV accident attorneys at Rieders, Travis, Dohrmann, Mowrey, Humphrey & Waters have spent decades honing their skills and successfully representing Pennsylvania families who have suffered an injury or loss due to someone else’s negligence. We offer personal attention and loyalty to every client, aggressively fighting for their right to compensation. Whether in settlement negotiations or pursuing a favorable trial verdict, we are thoroughly prepared and committed to achieving a just outcome. With our highly competent staff, we offer strength in numbers while providing top-notch personal service.
If you or your loved one has suffered harm from someone else’s negligence or incompetence in an RV crash, your next step should be to consult Rieders, Travis, Dohrmann, Mowrey, Humphrey & Waters by calling (570) 323-8711 or by using our online contact form. Based in Williamsport, we serve clients throughout the state of Pennsylvania, offering a free consultation on all personal injury matters. More than that, we offer you experience, knowledge, compassion, and a long history of results.