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Pittsburgh Injury Law Blog

Pennsylvania woman killed in motorcycle accident

Residents of the Pittsburgh area who have motorcycles have started to take to the roads. This activity unfortunately can lead to motor vehicle accidents involving motorcycles. Sadly one of these accidents recently left a woman from Butler dead.

The accident occurred one evening on Route 19. According to a spokesman for the Allegheny County medical examiner’s office, the woman and her husband were travelling on the road when they were struck by an automobile. Though the woman survived the initial collision her injuries were too severe and she died several hours later at an area hospital.

Deaths due to traffic accidents down in Pennsylvania

It sometimes feels that every time one reads or watches the news, another motor vehicle accident resulting in a death has occurred.  The reality however, is that throughout the nation the rate of death in motor vehicle accidents based on miles driven, is down. Experts believe there are multiple reasons for this reduction.

The first is that fewer people are drinking and driving. A spokesperson for Mothers Against Drunk Driving indicated that the actions of law enforcement could be the reason for this. The organization would like for things to be taken a step further by making ignition interlocks required for everyone caught driving drunk.

Expedited SSD Claims for Veterans

If you are a veteran or wounded warrior, you may be eligible to have your Social Security Disability (SSD) or Supplemental Security Income (SSI) claim expedited. Benefits offered through the Social Security Administration (SSA) however, are different from those through the Department of Veteran's Affairs.

For veterans to have their Social Security disability claim expedited, they must have been a military service member who either became disabled while on active duty on or after October 1, 2001. Once the Social Security Administration receives your application for disability benefits and you've been identified as a qualifying veteran, they will begin processing the claim, expediting it through. On average an application takes about 3-6 months for a decision to be made on the claim. When a claim is expedited, the amount of time for a decision to be made off of the application will be much less.

Although veterans may be able to have their claims expedited, they still have to meet Social Security's strict definition of disability. This means, you are unable to perform Substantial Gainful Activity or SGA, due to your medical condition. The SSA sets SGA at $1,070.00 gross per month. No matter how many hours you work, you cannot earn more than SGA when applying for SSD or SSI benefits. You must also be expected to be out of work for at least 12 months or more due to your condition.

Fall on Pennsylvania museum terrace leads to lawsuit

There are many attractions in the state of Pennsylvania that individual from near and far flock to. Two years ago a woman from another state was injured while visiting one of the state's attractions--an art museum. The injury occurred as the woman was walking on an outdoor terrace and she tripped. She said the incident occurred because of a slate walkway that was broken and uneven.

As a result of the fall the woman claims she injured the following parts of her body:

  • Head
  • Left foot
  • Left hip
  • Knees
  • Left shoulder
  • Neck

Explosion risk prompts recall of gas fireplaces

As spring makes its way into Western Pennsylvania, residents can still likely expect a few cool evenings. This could prompt some residents to turn to their gas fireplaces for warmth. Because of a recent recall, individuals with gas fires made by Hussong Manufacturing Co. Inc. will want to find another way to stay warm.

The reason for the recall is the possibility that an explosion could occur while using the gas fireplaces. The recall is not just a precaution. The explosions that have occurred, nine so far, are due to the premature release of gas from the fireplace.

What is Supplemental Security Income

When applying for disability benefits through the Social Security Administration (SSA), you may have come across the term Supplemental Security Income (SSI). Supplemental Security Income is a federal program through the SSA that provides benefits to low income individuals who do not have enough work credits for Social Security Disability benefits. They must be either 65 or older, totally or partially blind or have been deemed disabled by the SSA with a medical condition that prevents them from working at least 12 months or more.

As it stands in 2014, if you are working and applying for disability benefits, you cannot make more than $1,070.00 gross per month whether you are applying for SSI or SSD. You will be over what is called Substantial Gainful Activity (SGA). SSA believes that if you are able to earn over SGA you are capable of working and will be denied disability benefits. To be eligible for SSI payments, you must have limited income and limited resources. This will include money you are earning from work, your spouse's income, Social Security benefits or pensions and also the value of food and shelter you may be receiving from someone else.

Woman struck by truck following car accident dies

While no two car accidents are ever exactly the same there are nonetheless certain scenarios that seem to lead to car accidents occurring. These include vehicles travelling the wrong way on a road and secondary crashes that are the result of a previous collision. These both played a role in a fatal accident that occurred earlier this week in the Pittsburgh area.

The tragic incident occurred in the early morning hours after a Jeep, driven by a 22-year-old woman, entered the interstate heading the wrong direction. This led to a collision with another vehicle on that road that was apparently headed the right direction. Following that collision, the woman in the Jeep exited her vehicle and according to witnesses, stood in the middle of the road.

Pennsylvania Tree Trimmer Involved In Chainsaw Accident

Now that Pennsylvania's weather is warming up, outdoor work will become a common occurrence. Working outdoors can often require the use of power tools and machinery, which in some cases, can become quite dangerous and result in serious injuries. This is true for one Pennsylvania man who was working as a tree trimmer when he was struck in the shoulder by his own chainsaw.

The tree trimmer was a 21 year-old man who was working with a company pruning trees on Monday, March 31, 2014. It is reported that while he was up in a tree, his chainsaw kicked back slicing him in the neck and shoulder areas. He was then brought down from the tree by his coworkers.

Emergency responders were able to take the motor off of the chainsaw but they left the blade intact incase removing it would cause more damage. He was taken to Allegheny General Hospital where the trauma team said it was a good sign that he was still able to speak.

Settlement of Pittsburgh sunbather's lawsuit may be near

While most people are aware that spending too much time in the sun can be dangerous over time, few likely expect to be seriously hurt at the time they are engaging in the activity. In the summer of 2009, this happened to a woman. She was injured when, while sunbathing at a pool owned by the city of Pittsburgh, a car driven by one of the people employed by the pool ran her over.

Car Accidents and the Elderly

Older drivers are at a higher risk for serious injuries when involved in an automobile accident. As drivers age, accidents are not only more common but also more severe when it comes to sustaining injuries. Older drivers or passengers are more likely to experience injuries, sometimes fatal, when involved in even a minor crash. With age, individuals become more fragile making it harder to recover from an accident and also withstand the effects of an automobile accident.

The U.S. Department of Transportation's NHTSA announced on December 5, 2013, a new plan to ensure the safety of older drivers and passengers. NHTSA's plan will focus on vehicle safety, improved data collection and studying driver's behavior. They hope to find new technology for vehicles that can reduce the risk of death and serious injuries in older occupants. This would include better collision safety standards in cars. They also plan to conduct driving studies that are more realistic so they can better understand the effects of mental conditions in older adults such as dementia. They will then focus on educating the public on how to notice signs that you or your loved one may be at risk when driving. This will include keeping an eye out for signs of loss of vision, strength, flexibility and cognitive abilities.

Not only are injuries more common and severe, accidents in general are at a higher rate for adults over the age of 65. In 2012, 5,560 people who were 65 and older, were involved in fatal motor vehicle accidents according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA); 214,000 were injured. Older drivers now make up 16 percent of all licensed drivers and is expected to increase.

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