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South Williamsport Personal Injury Blog

Your vulnerability to medical mistakes may surprise you

With all of the education and training that doctors, nurses and other health care professionals here in Pennsylvania and elsewhere receive, you would think that they know what they are doing 100 percent of the time. Sadly, this is not always the case. In fact, you could find yourself shocked at just how vulnerable you could be to medical mistakes.

After all, medical professionals are human. The problem is that when someone in the health care field makes a mistake, it could cause substantial harm. You have probably heard horror stories about surgical errors in which a surgeon operates on the wrong body part or leaves something inside the patient, but many other mistakes could occur as well. No area of medical care is immune.

Grieving parents file wrongful death suit

Pennsylvania parents may know the mix of emotions that accompany the milestone of a child going off to college. Though certainly a child furthering his or her education in pursuit of a degree in a chosen field is a reason to feel proud, many parents often worry that harm will befall their child as he or she moves away from home to live on a college campus. In many cases, these fears are not unfounded; however, one grieving family has filed a wrongful death suit on behalf of their deceased son. 

The young man was a freshman at a Pennsylvania school, attending Lafayette College to play lacrosse. In the autumn of his first year away from home, he was found dead in his dorm room, which he shared with several other students. An investigation revealed that something caused him to fall and hit his head on the concrete floor. 

Slip-and-falls defendants often try to blame victim

Pennsylvania shoppers are in the midst of the busiest retail weeks of the year. The holiday season is traditionally a time when people venture out for more than just household necessities. Many people have occasions to give gifts, or perhaps are shopping for a new home appliance or vehicle, as big ticket items are usually on sale in December. With so many people in and out of stores, the often wet and icy weather can lead to an increase in slip-and-falls. 

Though many stores try to take precautions, like using salt to melt ice and clearing snow, there is still an increased risk. Floors inside a store can quickly become wet and slippery, and if the danger is not clearly marked, a shopper could easily suffer serious injury. Medical bills and other consequences of a serious fall can fall upon a victim if proper legal steps are not taken against the establishment. 

Pennsylvania Supreme Court makes workers' compensation ruling

Pennsylvania has long maintained a reputation for being home to hard-working men and women. In decades past, the steel mills, coal mines and railroads helped shape the nation's infrastructure on the backs of laborers. These days, the industry may be a bit more modern, but dedicated employees are still injured on the job each day, and may qualify to claim workers' compensation benefits.

Pennsylvania's Supreme Court recently made a ruling that involves recipients of workers' compensation. Sometimes, an injured worker has suffered because a third party caused an on-the-job injury. In many cases, an employer or insurance provider may want to file a lawsuit against the party responsible for causing an injury to the employee. 

Widow files wrongful death suit after husband killed by explosion

Winter is coming to Pennsylvania, and some areas of the state have already had their first snowfall of the season. This time of year, many residents may want to make sure the heating system in their home is working properly. When service is needed, they often rely on an experienced utility worker to get the job done. The wife of one such worker has filed a wrongful death suit after her husband was killed in a home on a service call. 

Last year, the man was sent to a home in Pennsylvania to work on a natural gas utility system. Unfortunately, a small part on the system had been installed wrong years ago by the Honeywell Company, also the party that manufactured the system. A terrible explosion followed the man's attempt to service the system, and he was killed. 

New workers' compensation law in effect

Pennsylvania workers should be aware that a new law will affect what happens if they are injured on the job. In October 2018, Governor Tom Wolf signed a law that directly affects how workers' compensation claims are handled. The law will affect both new and existing cases where an injured worker is collecting benefits after being hurt on the job. 

According to the new law, an employer's insurance company can request that an injured worker be examined after two years of filing a claim, to determine if they are still too injured to work. This means that a doctor will be allowed to determine if an injured worker will be able to receive full benefits in the future. If the doctor determines that a worker is less than 35% injured at the time of the follow-up exam, his or her benefits may end after 10 years. 

Wrongful death prompts action from governor

For Pennsylvania college students, a new semester can bring both nerves and excitement. As a student attempts to find his or her niche, many are drawn to the appealing prospect of joining a fraternity or sorority. Unfortunately, a "pledge" must often complete a series of challenges to earn one's spot, and some of these tasks can cause serious personal injury or even wrongful death. 

The process, often referred to as "hazing," caused at least one death last year. The student in question was required to drink a dangerous amount of alcohol, and was never able to recover. Often, less serious injuries go unreported, because a student is afraid to appear weak, or "uncool," by their peers that have given the instructions, often senior members of the fraternity or sorority. 

Accident involving toddler may be wrongful death

Pennsylvania parents would likely agree that one of their greatest fears is an accident that causes serious injury or death to their child. Sometimes, negligence on the part of a product manufacturer can be considered wrongful death. Recently, a small child was tragically killed, and authorities have already determined the parents were not at fault. 

A 4-year-old child was playing in his home as his parents prepared a meal. He became entangled in a treadmill used for exercise. A Pennsylvania medical examiner determined that the child was killed when his neck was crushed. After an investigation, authorities determined the parents are not responsible and that they had been properly supervising the child. 

Car accidents may be handled as criminal cases

Pennsylvania drivers would probably say they do all they can to avoid a car crash. By nature, most crashes are unintentional. Many car accidents do not require much investigation, and the matter can be quickly resolved. Recently, an unusual accident that resulted in death has authorities suspecting the accident was intentional. 

The investigation began after several Pennsylvania residents heard a loud noise. The frightening sound turned out to be a vehicle that had exploded. Three people in the car were killed, including a 2-year-old boy. All of the people in the vehicle knew each other, and one of the adult victims was the child's father. The third victim is reportedly a family friend. 

Car accidents involving school buses on the rise

Pennsylvania residents might find themselves alarmed as they continue to see news stories where school buses have been involved in crashes. Several have occurred in the state already this year, and the fear that buses continue to be involved in car accidents have many parents concerned. Many families rely on buses to get children to and from school each day, and each moment a bus is on the road is a moment that children are potentially in danger. The latest crash resulted in fatality. 

Recently, a Pennsylvania school bus, fortunately empty except for the driver, was involved in a serious accident. A vehicle had come to a stop, signaling a left hand turn. A driver approaching from behind failed to stop in time and swerved to avoid a rear end collision. Unfortunately, this maneuver caused the vehicle to end up in oncoming traffic. 

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