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Pittsburgh Injury Law Blog

Exoskeleton helps former Olympian walk again

There is no question the former Olympian Amy Van Dyken-Rouen is a force to be reckoned with. Her aggression helped to propel her to a total of two Olympics as a swimmer where she won six gold medals. Lately however the woman has been in the news in conjunction with the catastrophic All Terrain Vehicle accident she had this past June. 

The fall left her unable to feel or move anything below her waist. Since the incident she has been working on rehabilitating her body. This recently paid off as she was allowed to walk with the assistance of a bionic exoskeleton device. Since she has not regained feeling in her legs it would not be possible for her to reach this mile stone without the aid of the exoskeleton. Other paraplegics are likely expressing their hope that the device soon becomes available to all.

Pennsylvania program may save lives following car accidents

Traffic accidents are an unfortunate unintended result of the wide spread use of motor vehicles throughout the nation. While there are continual efforts to try to reduce the number of crashes that occur, once they do happen and someone is hurt, it is important to address those injuries as quickly as possible. The Pennsylvania Transportation Department has a program designed to help with that aspect.

Called the Yellow Dot Program, it involves the placement of a sticker that is a yellow dot, in the back window of the vehicle. The appearance of that sticker alerts the emergency personnel who respond to the accident that medical information that could have a bearing on the outcome of the incident is in the glove compartment.

Father files Dram Shop lawsuit following death of son

Drunk driving occurs in communities throughout the nation. As is the case with all motor vehicle accidents, those in which alcohol is a factor can lead to serious injuries and even death. Accordingly, many communities do what they can to promote alternative modes of transportation. Unfortunately this does not always work and some individuals get behind the wheel of cars to drive anyway. These incidents sometimes lead to lawsuits against the parties responsible for the crash.

Do you know what constitutes aggressive driving?

Car accidents are a reality on roads throughout the state of Pennsylvania. While each crash has its own set of contributing factors, in general there are several factors commonly cited as reasons. One of the things that often contributes to motor vehicle accidents in the Pittsburgh area is aggressive driving.

Understanding that this is an issue on the roads, police departments throughout the state have partnered with PennDOT to try to make Pennsylvania highways safer by deterring aggressive drivers. In addition to additional enforcement on the state’s roads, this takes the form of education as well. Since 2006, this approach has targeted more than 580 roads.

Woman injured in slip and fall sues convenience store

While many residents of the Pittsburgh area may deem filling the car up with gas a pesky chore, few likely consider it to be dangerous. The reality however is that in certain situations it can be. This is particularly true when the temperature drops and surfaces become slippery. A woman who was hurt when she slipped at a 7-Eleven located in another Pennsylvania city learned this firsthand.

The woman said she slipped and fell on ice that was located around the pump. As a result of that fall she said she suffered severe bodily injuries. The injuries were not specified but she indicated that it is possible that they could become permanent.

Update on Fayette County fair accident involving horse

On Thursday, July 31, 2014, an accident occurred just outside the Fayette County fair that killed a horse. You can visit our previous blog post here where we first wrote about the incident. The details of the incident have been updated.

We now know it was a family of four in the vehicle that was traveling on Route 119 South when they struck the horse. The driver says he never even saw what they had hit. The accident occurred during a fireworks show that was going on at the fair. Police have reported, that the fireworks scared the horse, causing it to break free onto the road.

Thursday was the fair's annual rodeo and horse judging event. Fireworks were originally scheduled for Wednesday according to the fair's website. The fair then posted on its Facebook page that the fireworks were to be rescheduled for Thursday. Horse owners said they were unaware of the change. They have also expressed that horses do not respond well to fireworks and that the fair board should know that having the two together is not safe.

Defective seat belt leads to $55M verdict

Many of the vehicles being produced by car makers around the world incorporate new safety features, most of which drivers are probably not even aware of. Virtually everyone however, is familiar with, and many use the seat belts which are included in every vehicle. The message communicated to drivers and vehicle occupants of all ages is that their use will help to minimize injuries that might be suffered in a motor vehicle accident, should one occur. Accordingly, those who click the buckle on a seat belt expect that it will perform as intended. 

Multi-vehicle accident involving a horse near Fayette County fair

Multi-vehicle accident involving a horse near Fayette County fair

On July 31, 2014, around 10 p.m., two vehicles and a horse were involved in an accident. The crash occurred along Route 119 and Ranch Road in Dunbar Township, near the Fayette County fair that was going on nearby.

Fayette County 911 dispatchers said a helicopter was requested shortly after the accident. Several injuries were reported and the horse is said to have been killed in the crash. The first people to arrive at the scene said an individual who was involved in the accident was sitting against a nearby guide rail with leg injuries. Only one person was sent to the hospital by ambulance with minor injuries while the others refused medical treatment.

It is believed that the horse wandered from the Fayette County fair where they have several farm animals as part of their festivities. State police barracks in Uniontown, reported one vehicle hit the horse and then a second vehicle rear-ended that vehicle.

Cooling treatment shows promise in reduction of cerebral palsy

When a mother-to-be enters a hospital to give birth to a child, she does so assuming that she and her unborn child will receive a certain level of medical care that will result in both leaving healthy. Unfortunately this is not always the outcome as a variety of things can go wrong. One of those things is a baby being deprived of oxygen.

The deprivation of oxygen to a baby during delivery can result in an injury to the baby. When a child does not receive a high enough level of oxygen during delivery, sometimes referred to as asphyxia, brain cells can die resulting in permanent damage. The severity of the injury will vary depending on many factors including how long the baby went without oxygen. Babies may be diagnosed with cerebral palsy or developmental delays. In the most tragic cases, the baby may die.

Water Jet Ski Safety

Water scooters, better known by the brand names of Jet Ski, Sea Doo and WaveRunner, are used frequently in the summer for recreational water activities. A water scooter is a watercraft that a rider sits on rather than inside. They also do not have any brakes to assist in slowing down. This poses may threats for an accident or injury to occur. This was the case for one Penn Hills man on Sunday, July 13, 2014 when his water scooter capsized while riding on the Allegheny River.

The man was riding on the water scooter with a young boy on the back. It is reported that the man was driving the water scooter aggressively around a pontoon boat. Both the man and the boy were thrown off of the water scooter and into the river; the young boy, however, was pulled to safety on board a pontoon boat. The driver remained in the water, lost his unfastened life vest and then disappeared under the water. Rescue units appeared on the scene Sunday evening to search for the missing man. The search went on for three days until the man's body was found Wednesday morning 2 ½ miles away from where he fell off of the water scooter. The cause and manner of the man's death has not been released.

Water scooters have been involved in 20 percent of all reported boat injuries yet only make up 8% of registered boats in Pennsylvania according to a report from the Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission. Water scooters can reach speeds of up to 70 mph. If a driver is moving at high speeds and hits a wave or has to make a sharp turn, capsizing is almost always a result.

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