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Pittsburgh Premises Liability Law Blog

Expand your knowledge about the common slip-and-fall accident

If you are like most Pittsburgh residents, you probably feel confident in your ability to avoid slip-and-fall accidents. Unfortunately, overconfidence and complacency may work to increase your odds of suffering a fall. After all, most of these accidents strike out of nowhere when the victim is feeling relatively safe.

You probably already know that many slip-and-fall accidents occur outside in inclement weather. However, indoor slip-and-fall accidents are also a risk. Often, all a fall victim suffers from is embarrassment, but sometimes a serious injury may result from even a seemingly minor fall. Here are some important facts you should know about slips and falls.

How does Pennsylvania address the safety of amusement rides?

The state of Pennsylvania provides an Amusement Ride Safety Division within the Department of Agriculture. This division is responsible for inspecting, approving and registering all amusement attractions in the state. Owners of these attractions also play a role; they are required to register each attraction with the Department and to submit affidavits of inspection before the attraction begins operating.

The Department of Agriculture takes amusement ride safety seriously. A good way to see how safety is addressed is by reviewing the manual issued to attraction operators and attendants. Some of the important safety points contained in this manual include the following:

Does Pennsylvania have a dram shop liability law?

It is common today to see signs posted in dram shops, bars or even restaurants telling customers that the staff reserves the right to refuse service to people who appear visibly intoxicated. There is a very good reason for these postings as just about every state in the nation has legislature addressing liability for over-serving customers. Pennsylvania is no exception, with carefully worded legal code to handle these matters.

In Pennsylvania, the code states that alcohol licensees cannot be held liable for third party injuries suffered off premises and caused by someone who was served at the establishment. In simple-speak, this means that if a bar customer crashes into you after leaving the premises, the dram shop cannot be held liable. However, what if a bartender serves alcohol to a visibly intoxicated customer before the accident?

Pennsylvania Borough worker dead after an explosion

The long history of Pennsylvania is rife with stories about the devastation fires or explosions can cause. Advancements in the safety and technology of these modern times means less explosions occur, but accidents do still happen. No one knows this better right now than the residents of Factoryville, Pennsylvania, who are mourning the loss of a valued neighbor and municipal worker.

The man died Monday evening near the Factoryville Borough Maintenance Building. The victim was on duty helping to perform a controlled burn when an unexpected explosion took his life. According to news reports, the victim was operating a skid steer loader while burning debris such as scrap wood and branches. The explosion occurred at approximately 6:30 p.m. and could be seen and felt for many miles.

Premises liability due to inadequate security

Premises liability covers a wide range of incidents that could cause a person to suffer from injuries, including inadequate security measures. While it can be a complex area of the law when it comes to proving fault, you only need to understand a few things to know if you have grounds for a claim. We hope this blog post about inadequate security will help you determine if you can seek a legal remedy for your injuries.

All property owners have a duty to make certain their premises remain reasonably safe for visitors. When a property owner fails to do so and a person becomes injured, the owner may be held liable. Having adequate security is an important element in preserving safety for everyone. A few examples of good security include proper lighting, functioning locks, surveillance cameras and the presence of security staff.

Liability for winter slip and fall injuries

With snow starting to fall more frequently and temperatures staying below freezing most days, icy conditions increase the risk of a slip or fall injury. The most common places for slips or falls to occur during winter are much the same as during the rest of the year, with parking lots and sidewalks outside businesses becoming even more hazardous.

If you've been injured after slipping on a patch of ice in a store's parking lot and are considering claiming damages, you may be wondering whether the store is liable for your injury. After all, they can't control the weather, can they?

Truck accidents can happen for a number of reasons

As the driver of a passenger vehicle in the Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, area, you know one thing to be true: You'll often find yourself in close proximity to commercial trucks.

It doesn't matter if you're driving on I-79 from Pittsburgh to Washington on your commute home after an exhausting day at work or sitting on I-376 in rush hour traffic, we all have to share the road properly in order to remain safe.

Samsung owners stung twice by recalls

For Samsung Galaxy Note 7 owners seeking to relieve boredom on holiday flights, reading books and magazines had to suffice as distractions because their phones were banned from planes. In October, the Department of Transportation (DOT) prohibited the smartphones from being brought onto the plane via carry on or stowed luggage. Previous to this order, the DOT allowed the phone owners to bring their devices onto the plane if the phones remained powered down. Having received many reports of the phones overheating, however, the agency decided to the phones presented a risk to air traffic safety in any capacity-powered on or off.

Capitalizing on a rare Apple stumble with reviews of its latest iPhone iteration, Samsung sped up development of its Note 7 to extend its market share. Initially, the phone received positive reviews for its design. The praise evaporated as soon as reports of overheating batteries and melted cases surfaced. According to the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), 92 reports of overheated batteries were filed. As a result of the excessive heat, 26 people were burned and 55 cases of property damage were put on record.

Combating distracted driving with apps

If you have been following our blog, you are aware of the dangers associated with distracted driving and have read about laws enacted to prohibit drivers from engaging in dangerous practices. If people are aware that texting and driving are a dangerous combination, why do they continue to engage in this behavior?

Some psychologists believe that our desire to text, in spite of this risks associated with this activity, arises from the positive feedback that our brains provide when we respond to a text message. Triggered by a ping or buzz programmed into the phone, a chemical called dopamine is released whenever we anticipate receiving a reward. In this case, a response to a text message is the reward. When we get and reply to a text, these good feelings reinforce our notion that texting is beneficial even if we know we could become injured while texting and driving.

Infant dies in elevator of dangerous property

Because of the often brutal scenes first responders in Pennsylvania and elsewhere witness every day, it may take a lot to rattle them. However, a recent tragic accident in the elevator shaft of a dangerous property left some rescue workers visibly shaken. The incident has also raised the ire of many tenants and may result in serious consequences for the building's owner.

A woman living in a privately owned apartment building in another state left her apartment on the 23rd floor pushing her 6 week old baby in her stroller. She stopped at the elevators, possibly unaware that long overdue repairs had begun on them just 90 minutes earlier. However, when the elevator doors opened, the car was six to eight feet below the opening. The baby's stroller rolled forward and plunged into the shaft, crashing onto the roof of the car. The woman fell also, landing on the baby in her stroller.

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