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January 2016 Archives


Imagine waking up halfway through a surgery. You can hear what's going on around you, and feel pressure if not pain. But you're paralyzed, and can't communicate that you're awake. This terrifying scenario unfortunately is not something out of science fiction. It's called anesthesia awareness, and it happens to patients every year. 

Blizzard of 2016 opens door to recreational sledding accidents

Now that the Blizzard of 2016 has passed through Pennsylvania, leaving more than two feet of snow in its wake, many kids will likely want to break out the sleds and inner tubes and take to the slopes. Unfortunately, some of those same children will likely be injured or even killed while taking advantage of the ideal winter sledding conditions. When those injuries result from negligence on the part of property owners who should have taken steps to protect anyone sledding from preventable harm, the injured person or his or her family may sue for damages. 


If your loved one has died from what you suspect may be medical malpractice, an autopsy can help determine what really happened. However, often medical professionals do not want to order an autopsy. They may be confident that they already know the cause of death, be unwilling to incur the expense of the procedure, or may simply be afraid that an autopsy could uncover evidence that could be used against them in a medical malpractice lawsuit. 

Safety tips for winter biking

There are bikers, and then there are the bikers who commit to riding all year long, even when snow and ice cover the ground. While their determination is laudable, these bikers need to take extra precautions during icy wintry conditions to prevent not only slips and spills, but collisions with other bikers, pedestrians or cars that could result in serious injury or worse. 


An accident this past summer in Pennsylvania's Pocono Mountains illustrates the dangers that drivers can face when they share the road with truck drivers who have medical conditions. In this instance, a truck driver blacked out, and his truck crossed the median and struck a bus filled with Italian tourists. Three people were killed, including the bus driver, and 13 people were injured.

Mechanical failure may have caused Pennsylvania plane crash

Three men are dead after a small plane taking off from a private airstrip at the Nemacolin Woodlands Resort in Farmington crashed shortly after takeoff. Reports state that after the plane took off, one of its doors malfunctioned, fell off and hit one wing of the plane. The plane then crashed into some trees, where it caught fire. Bystanders also report having heard a sound that could have indicated engine failure right before the crash. The plane was reported to have been a single-engine Beechcraft BE36 (Bonanza), a model which has been in production since 1947.


Kevin Roper, The Wal-Mart truck driver who slammed into a limo carrying Tracy Morgan in June 2014, injuring Morgan and others and killing comedian James McNair, is seeking to have the criminal charges against him dismissed. Roper's attorney, David Glassman, is claiming that the criminal charges against his client -- one count of death by auto and four counts of assault by auto -- should be dismissed because his client won't be able to get a fair trial in light of the publicity surrounding the case. The civil lawsuits against Roper have already been settled.

Can you get a DUI on a snowmobile?

Yes. Pennsylvania law prohibits riders from operating a snowmobile while under the influence of alcohol or any other drug. Riding a snowmobile requires a great deal of focus and attention to steer and navigate obstacles, and being under the influence of alcohol impairs a driver's ability to respond to these dangers. Riding a snowmobile under the influence of alcohol also endangers the safety of others on the road, whether they are other snowmobilers, drivers, cross-country skiers or pedestrians. 


If you slip and fall on someone's property in Pennsylvania in the wintertime, you might not have much recourse in a premises liability lawsuit. That's because of something known as the "hills and ridges doctrine," which limits property owners' liability for accidents caused by natural and recent accumulation of ice and snow. 

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