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Pittsburgh Injury Law Blog

What you need to know about products liability

When you buy a product you likely expect that it will work as intended and not cause you any harm. Unfortunately this is not always the case. All too often people—maybe even you—are hurt or even killed while using a product they assumed was safe. This pertains to a wide variety of types of products including:

  • Industrial equipment
  • Household equipment
  • Automobiles
  • Furniture
  • Toys
  • Medicines
  • Food

I appealed my denial. Can I get an earlier hearing date?

If you have applied for Social Security Disability benefits and your initial application was denied, it's normal to feel disappointed and discouraged. But you should know that the Social Security Administration denies around 70% of applications on the first go around. If you've been denied, it's important to realize that this isn't the end of the road. You can appeal the decision and get a second chance at receiving SSD benefits.

If you choose to appeal your denial, you will be given a hearing date, where you will present your case to an Administrative Law Judge. Because the SSA is currently dealing with a huge backlog of hearing cases, your assigned hearing date will probably be a year or more away. Hearings are scheduled by the Social Security hearing office in the order in which the request for hearing was filed. So it's done strictly by dates. It is organized this way in order to be fair to each applicant.

Woman Dies in Rear-End Collision in Ambridge

On Friday, January 23, a Beaver County woman was killed after a Penske Truck struck her car from behind. The accident occurred on Ohio River Boulevard, (Route 65) in Ambridge.

Police reported that the woman was stopped at a red light when the truck crashed into her vehicle. The victim's vehicle was pushed approximately 260 feet. The trunk was pushed into the backseat of the vehicle due to the force of the impact.

There was no indication of any braking prior to the crash. Skid marks were not present at the scene. Police obtained the truck's black box to determine if the brakes were applied and how fast the vehicle was going.

Pennsylvania's Highest Court Rules In Favor of Plaintiffs on the Use of Defenses.

The Pennsylvania Supreme Court recently issued a ruling on two important defenses that defense attorneys try to use to defeat the rights of injured parties. In this case, the rulings were in favor of the injured parties. The issues involved the 1) Gist of the Action Doctrine Defense and 2) Certificates of Merit. Although Berger and Green's clients were not part of this case, Berger and Green Attorney Mark Milsop wrote an Amicus Curiae Brief on behalf of the Pennsylvania Association for Justice (PAJ) in this case.

Head-On Collision in West Mifflin Leaves One Dead and Five Injured

On Tuesday, a head-on collision occurred on New England Road in West Mifflin around 7 p.m. The road is narrow, has two lanes and is about a half of a mile north of Route 837.

The accident involved two SUVs. One of the SUVs crossed over the center lines and crashed head-on into the other SUV. In the one vehicle was a driver and two passengers. All three were taken to nearby hospitals for their injuries. The driver later died at the hospital because of significant injuries.

In the other SUV was a driver, passenger and child who was secured in a child's seat. They were all taken to nearby hospitals as well for treatment of their injuries.

Will OnStar program result in fewer car accidents?

It is not uncommon to hear people complain about the actions of other drivers on the roads. It is possible that even those individuals making those comments could unknowingly be guilty of some of the same things they accuse others of. A new feature offered by OnStar could inform drivers provide unknowing drivers with this information. The service will provide feedback on driver performance to OnStar customers who enroll.

The director of business development and alliances, global connected consumer experience at General Motors indicates that the assessment is designed to help drivers gain an understanding of how they drive and provide feedback. The end result will hopefully be that drivers are smarter, better drivers.

Flash-Freeze Causes Major Pileups and Three Fatalities on Pennsylvania Roadways

On Sunday, a sudden flash-freeze caused multiple pileups around the area. Three lives were lost due to the major accidents. The accidents began to occur just before 7 a.m.

The flash-freeze was caused by a sudden light rain that froze on contact with the cold roadways.

Fifty-six vehicles were involved in the first major pileup on the Schuylkill Expressway in Philadelphia. One person died in the accident and at least 31 were injured. Police brought SEPTA buses to take injured victims to nearby hospitals.

What should I do if the other driver doesn't have insurance or enough insurance?

Maintaining valid car insurance is required by law in all 50 states in the union. While each state has different requirements about what kind of insurance is necessary and how much is required, penalties for not carrying car insurance are steep regardless of where you are. That's because, in case of accidents or other emergencies, having car insurance can help expedite the claims process. If both parties in a car accident have insurance policies, cases are much easier to handle.

But if a driver who doesn't have insurance, or doesn't have adequate insurance to cover the damages hits you, the claim can get very complicated very quickly. If you're in an accident caused by an individual who doesn't have insurance at all, but you do, you can submit a claim for uninsured motorist benefits. This claim would be processed through your own insurance company, based on coverage that you had purchased in your own policy.

Will personal breathalyzers catch on?

Most readers would likely agree that drunk drivers are to blame for far too many motor vehicle accidents on roads throughout the United States. While the circumstances surrounding every drunk driving accident vary, in some situations it is possible that the driver to blame was not even aware that he or she was too intoxicated drive. As it turns out there is a tool those individuals could have used before they turned on their car and pulled on the road. 

Accident reconstructionists hope to avoid future crashes

Following a serious crash many activities will take place. In some situations an accident reconstruction investigation is commenced. Recent chain-reaction crashes that have occurred in areas of the United States have prompted investigations such as these to be initiated. In this post we will look at one such investigation taking place in another state.

The reconstruction involves 15 investigators who have been working together in the same room—called the “war room”—trying to determine the root cause of the crash that in addition to sending 22 individuals to the hospital, left one person dead. All told the crash involved a fire, close to 60 vehicles and stretched a quarter of a mile. Following the crash the stretch of road remained closed for two days. To keep people out as they work they posted a “do not disturb” sign on the door.

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