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Pennsylvania and Ohio Injury Law Blog

Police: Girl, 6, struck and killed by drunk driver

She was at the perfect age for waving glow sticks in darkening air and delighting in their yellow and pink swirls. A play date was coming to an end for the 6-year-old. Her mom and sister were standing there with her, on the driveway at her friend's Shaler Township home, about an hour north of Pittsburgh.

The sounds of play were broken off by the roar of an engine and squealing tires. A car hurtling at more than twice the speed limit veered off the residential street, plowed over a mailbox and barreled through the yard. A neighbor said she heard a "terrible bang" and ran outside. On the ground she saw glow sticks scattered around the convulsing body of the little girl.

Listen to this

It's the sound no one really wants to hear: silence. Unfortunately, about 20 percent of Americans suffer some degree of hearing loss. While many of the losses are due to aging, there are also other causes of hearing loss that leave people with diminished capacity to not only enjoy life but to participate safely in life.

The Hearing Loss Association of America says on its website that continuous noise in the workplace can cause hearing loss over extended periods of time. However, even if your hearing is damaged by long-term workplace exposure to noise, it can be difficult to obtain Pennsylvania workers' compensation benefits that include medical care and wage replacement.

Tragedy south of Pittsburgh

An hour south of Pittsburgh sits the township of Redstone, Pennsylvania, that includes a number of rural villages. It's not a particularly prosperous area; according to the U.S. Census, about a fifth of the township's residents live in poverty.

So when tragedy hits there, it hits especially hard. And it hit with a vengeance this past Saturday when two cars collided head-on. A 28-year-old woman was killed in the violent collision and a three-year-old girl in the woman's car "suffered major injuries," a news report stated.

Construction worker burned in electrical accident

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration lists electrical hazards as one of the top four causes of construction fatalities. A Pennsylvania man working on a State College mixed-use development was burned when the equipment he was operating hit an electrical line.

The 56-year-old Penfield man was flown to a Pittsburgh hospital. Officials were unable to describe the severity of his injuries at the time of the Centre Daily Times report.

Operator injured when crane topples

Construction workers who help erect tall structures know that cranes are invaluable tools to help move and lift materials. However, the giant machines also come with risks, as was illustrated in a recent Ohio construction accident.

On a worksite in downtown Dayton, a crane toppled to the ground with its boom stretching across a popular bike path. Fortunately, no one was on the path at the time of the collapse and the crane operator escaped the incident with injuries described as moderate.

Workplace violence: Sometimes unexpectedly quiet

Media outlets throughout Pennsylvania and Ohio -- and the rest of the world -- provided extensive coverage of the killings of a reporter and cameraman on live TV last month. The chilling video was a graphic illustration of workplace violence. While the shootings made headlines for days, experts say most nonlethal violence is kept quiet afterwards by employers.

Even though the nonlethal violence can result in injuries to one or more workers, the incidents might not even be counted as workplace violence, the CEO of a human resources consultancy says. "The aggressor gets terminated and the injured person gets treated under workers' comp and so it doesn't necessarily get counted as violence in the workplace."

Pedestrian accident victim dies 50 years later of severe injuries

Most of our readers were not yet born when an 8-year-old Pennsylvania boy was hit by a car on July 8, 1965. The day after the pedestrian accident, the Allentown newspaper reported that the boy hospitalized in critical condition had suffered broken legs, cuts and bruises -- as well as massive head injuries.

The severe brain trauma he suffered that day resulted in quadriplegia for the boy. Fifty years later, he was still being treated for the injuries suffered that summer day. A few days ago, the accident victim died as a result of those brain injuries from which he had never recovered.

Holding drunken drivers accountable

A half-hour southwest of Pittsburgh, a couple has filed a lawsuit against a Canonsburg fraternal club, claiming that the club served alcohol to an intoxicated local woman. The 43-year-old suburban woman is accused of slamming her car into the back of the couple's pick-up truck stopped at an intersection.

The woman in the pick-up suffered head trauma and a knee injury, while her husband sustained neck and back injuries.

Ball of fire engulfs two construction workers

The questions and answers in a 911 tell much of the story of two badly injured Ohio construction workers. Someone has called in to report a fire and the operator asks, "And what is on fire?" The caller responds succinctly: "A man." "An actual person?" the operator asks. "Yes," is the reply.

The Sharonville construction accident was described by witnesses and a loud noise followed by a ball of fire. Officials said two men in a cherry-picker were using a power washer to strip paint off of a pole when they touched an overhead power line. The men were hospitalized with serious injuries, according to a news report.

Worker touches power line, goes into cardiac arrest

One of the greatest dangers construction workers face is when they deal with electrical lines. Workers can suffer electrocution, severe burns and other serious injuries when a vehicle, ladder or body part touches a power line or there is an arc flash or arc blast.

According to a newspaper report, this morning a utility worker on a construction site touched a live power line. The 19,000-volt jolt sent the worker into cardiac arrest. No word was available on his or her condition. The electricity also set fire to the worker's truck and a utility pole and knocked out power to 400 Ohio businesses and homes in the Heath area west of Columbus.

Dallas W. Hartman P.C., Attorneys at Law

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