Feds say more monitoring needed by natural gas stations

The Department of Environmental Protection announced on April 27 that they will step up air-quality monitoring near natural gas compressor stations. One site in Susquehanna County found levels of…

The Department of Environmental Protection announced on April 27 that they will step up air-quality monitoring near natural gas compressor stations. One site in Susquehanna County found levels of PM2.5, which is a particulate matter that could be harmful to those who are exposed to it long-term.

The air-quality monitoring will take place in 10 western and northern counties in the state. This is in addition to 27 locations across the state that are currently being monitored. The plan is to have the new monitoring in place by 2017.

The areas that are not monitored right now will be providing the first data to the DEP. They will be monitoring for sulfates, nitrates, metals, organic chemicals, oil and more. The health effects of these particulates when people are exposed include asthma, decreased lung function, bronchitis and emphysema. Those who are young and the elderly have the highest risk.

The greater potential risk, though, is from the PM2.5 particles. The particles are small and that can mean they get deep into the lungs, according to the Environmental Protection Agency.

A recent report by the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Control found the higher levels of PM2.5. The announcement from the DEP about increased monitoring came just five days later. The DEP, though, said that the plan had been in place for several months before results of the ATSDR study were released.

Other health problems that can be caused by exposure to PM2.5 over time include more hospitalizations, low birth weights, pre-term births and an increase in mortality. While PM2.5 could be harmful for the elderly and young children, there is no risk for others for a short amount of time.

Workers in areas where the PM2.5 exposure is high could experience illness. Workers’ compensation does provide benefits for those who are made ill because of their work. An experienced lawyer can provide more information on your legal options.

Source: StateImpact, “PA expands particulate monitoring as federal study finds high level in one location,” Jon Hurdle, May 05, 2016

Here’s how you can spot a drunk driver

As you make your way down the road, you understand the importance of paying attention to other drivers. While most people will do whatever it takes to remain safe,…

As you make your way down the road, you understand the importance of paying attention to other drivers. While most people will do whatever it takes to remain safe, this isn’t the case with everyone. For example, there are times when people drink and drive, thus increasing the chance of causing an accident.

It is important that you know how to spot a drunk driver, as this can help you avoid an accident. While there is no sure fire way of spotting somebody who is drunk, here are some of the signs of intoxication:

— Quick acceleration

— Tailgating

— Stopping without reason

— Weaving across the road

— Inability to stay in a single lane of traffic

— Driving slower than the speed limit

— Straddling the center line

— Slow response to traffic signals

— Driving on the wrong side of the road

— Swerving

If you notice that a driver is doing one or more of these things, there is a chance that he or she could be drunk. In this case, it’s best to keep your distance from the driver and contact authorities.

Even if you understand the importance of being a safe driver, you cannot assume that everybody else is doing the same. There will always be people who make mistakes on the road, which includes drinking and driving.

By knowing how to spot a drunk driver, you can improve the chance of avoiding an accident. If you are involved in an accident despite your efforts, make sure you contact the police and receive immediate medical attention.

Source: Mothers Against Drunk Driving, “How to Spot a Drunk Driver,” accessed May 10, 2016

What are some safety tips for construction workers?

Few jobs have as many hazards as construction. Workers only want to do the job and return home safely. Safety measures should be in place on every construction job….

Few jobs have as many hazards as construction. Workers only want to do the job and return home safely. Safety measures should be in place on every construction job. When an accident occurs involving injuries, not only do the injured workers pay, but the job site may be shut down and completion of the project delayed.

Here are a few safety measures that can help workers avoid the common injuries on a construction site:

— Sit down when possible when you are working at lower levels. Not every job requires construction workers to be up in the air. Lower level jobs can put a strain on your waist and knees. Sitting down on a stable stool can help avoid these injuries.

— Use tools that are ergonomically correct. When you use tools that are poorly designed, it is possible to develop medical conditions such as trigger finger, white finger, tendonitis and carpel tunnel syndrome.

— Lift objects using the strength of your legs. Backaches are common for construction workers and it’s often due to lifting incorrectly. Make sure to bend your knees and don’t twist to the side whenever you lifting.

— Keep your arms and wrists neutral. You could feel a variety of symptoms by the end of your shift, such as tingling, swelling and pain. Carpal tunnel syndrome can also develop.

— Keep your tool belt balanced. While nice to use because of the convenience, a tool belt that is unevenly balanced can mess with your body’s alignment.

These are just a few of the many safety tips that apply to construction workers. If you are injured in a construction accident, you have a right to seek workers’ compensation benefits. If you are denied, an experienced lawyer can help you file an appeal.

Source: safetyservicescompany.com, “5 Safety Tips for Construction Workers on Avoiding Stress and Injury,” accessed April 29, 2016

Do all truckers know how to drive in high wind?

When the wind picks up, every driver on the road needs to pay close attention to how this alters driving conditions. Driving in high wind is easier said than…

When the wind picks up, every driver on the road needs to pay close attention to how this alters driving conditions. Driving in high wind is easier said than done, especially for truckers. The higher the vehicle the more difficult it is to control when winds pick up. Adding to the challenge is the fact that high winds are often accompanied by rain and other adverse weather conditions.

All truckers are trained at how to drive safely in high wind. Unfortunately, some overlook what they should be doing, thus putting themselves and other drivers at risk.

Some of the things that truck drivers should do include:

— Slow down to a safer speed. The slower you drive in the wind the easier it is to control the vehicle.

— Increase following distance. Every driver, truckers included, should give themselves more time to stop.

— Keep both hands on the wheel. When the wind blows, you may feel that you are losing control of your vehicle. If you feel this in your car, imagine what it’s like for a trucker.

It is good to know that most truckers do whatever it takes to remain safe in windy conditions. Unfortunately, not every truck driver realizes the importance of changing his or her approach.

If you find yourself in close proximity to trucks when the weather takes a turn, do your best to keep a safe distance. This can help you avoid an accident and injury in the event that a truck driver makes a mistake. Your safety should always come first.

Source: D&D Truck Sales and Service, “7 Safety Tips for Driving a Truck in High Wind,” accessed April 26, 2016

Common questions related to construction injuries

If you work in the construction industry, you are well aware of the dangers that surround you on a daily basis. Even if you take the necessary steps in…

If you work in the construction industry, you are well aware of the dangers that surround you on a daily basis. Even if you take the necessary steps in remaining safe, this is not always as easy as it sounds.

You know one thing to be true: It is possible that you could be injured in a construction site accident at some point. For this reason, you want to learn as much as possible about this scenario. This will ensure that you are prepared if something bad does happen.

Here are some of the most common questions associated with construction injuries:

— What steps can you take right now to improve the safety of your workplace?

— If you are injured on the job, is it best to hide this from your employer or inform them without delay?

— Who is liable if a person is injured at a construction site?

— Are all construction site injuries covered by workers’ compensation?

— Who is responsible for ensuring that a construction site is as safe as possible?

— What types of construction accidents are most common?

You never want to be involved in a construction site accident. Even more so, you never want to be injured. Unfortunately, this is all part of the industry. It only takes one mistake for somebody to be injured on the job.

As a construction worker, make sure you understand the risks associated with your job as well as the steps you can take to improve your level of safety. If you do find yourself injured in a construction accident, your health is more important than anything else.

Source: FindLaw, “Construction Injuries FAQ,” accessed April 19, 2016

Distracted Driving Awareness Month is upon us

Distracted Driving Awareness Month began April 1. It is the National Safety Council’s way of trying to get drivers to pay more attention to what’s going on around them…

Distracted Driving Awareness Month began April 1. It is the National Safety Council’s way of trying to get drivers to pay more attention to what’s going on around them when operating their vehicles. The government reports that 431,000 people were injured in distracted driving traffic accidents last year and 3,170 people were killed. Another horrifying statistic is that 10 percent of drivers ages 15 to 19 years old were distracted at the time that they were involved in fatal car accidents.

Many drivers erroneously believe that using a hands-free mobile device is safe — 80 percent of drivers, in fact. However, there are over 30 research studies that have found that a driver’s brain is distracted even when he or she is using a hands-free device.

One part of the message that the NSC wants to get out to the public is that your vehicle’s infotainment systems are not safe to use while driving. Over 53 percent of drivers believe that these systems that are installed by the car manufacturer are safe to use. The technology in a vehicle, according to the NSC, “should prevent crashes, not increase their likelihood.” Those who do use these features or mobile devices don’t see as much as 50 percent of their surroundings.

If you have been injured in a car accident caused by a distracted driver, you have a right to seek compensation for your injuries and losses. A Pennsylvania personal injury attorney can help you learn more about your legal options, which may include filing a lawsuit against the driver and other responsible parties.

Source: cars.com, “Your Attention, Please: April Is Distracted Driving Awareness Month,” Matt Schmitz, April 14, 2016

You should understand these things about truck accidents

As you know, sharing the road with trucks is something you have to do. It doesn’t matter where you are traveling, you know that commercial trucks are everywhere. While…

As you know, sharing the road with trucks is something you have to do. It doesn’t matter where you are traveling, you know that commercial trucks are everywhere. While there is nothing wrong with this if everyone shares the road, you are aware that this is not something all drivers do.

Here are a few things you should understand about truck accidents:

— Most truck accidents are related to negligence. This can include but is not limited to a lack of sleep, distracted driving, speeding, and improper training.

— Truck accidents typically cause injuries. When a truck collides with a passenger vehicle, the size difference alone puts the people in the smaller vehicle at a disadvantage. This often leads to serious injuries and even death.

— Truck companies will do whatever it takes to avoid responsibility. Even if you know that the trucker was responsible for the accident, you can be rest assured that the trucking company will fight back against this. They don’t want to admit fault, as it could cost them a lot of money.

Have you or a loved one been injured in a truck accident? If so, you know that there is nothing more important than receiving the best medical care. From there, you should think about contacting us to learn more about your legal rights. We are more than happy to answer your questions, provide guidance, and help you understand what the future will bring. It only takes one phone call or email to get started. From there, we will be on your side every step of the way.

How can you prevent construction accidents this summer?

As the weather warms up, construction crews of all types begin to take on more projects. And of course, when this happens, the likelihood of an accident is much…

As the weather warms up, construction crews of all types begin to take on more projects. And of course, when this happens, the likelihood of an accident is much greater.

Nobody knows for sure why construction accidents increase during the summer months, but some of the potential culprits include longer daylight hours, more distractions, vacation planning, and different sleeping patterns.

While this is a major concern, there are steps companies can take to prevent accidents during the summer months. These include:

— Holding regular meetings to ensure that everybody is on the same page at all times.

— Making sure all workers are wearing the appropriate gear, even if the weather is warm.

— Hydration. When temperatures heat up, the chance of dehydration also increases. It is essential for all workers to stay hydrated, even if they are not feeling poorly.

— Protect against working too many hours. With long daylight hours and nice weather, some workers are tempted to stay on the job for too long. When this happens, a person gets tired, which can lead to an accident that causes serious injury or even death.

There is no sure fire way to prevent construction accidents this summer, but there are steps employers and workers can take to protect against this.

If for any reason a person is injured in a construction accident, he or she should not wait to receive medical attention. The individual should call for help from the site and then do whatever it takes to make a full recovery. Furthermore, it’s important to let your employer know what happened.

Source: For Construction Pros, “Ten Tips to Prevent the Construction-Accident High Season,” accessed April 06, 2016

2 injuried in accident, citations issued to 2 drivers

When an accident occurs and both drivers are cited, who is determined to be at fault? For example, is the person who was driving without a license at fault…

When an accident occurs and both drivers are cited, who is determined to be at fault? For example, is the person who was driving without a license at fault for simply being on the road in the first place or is the person who allegedly committed a lane violation at fault?

That will be up to the insurance companies and the court, if a personal injury lawsuit is filed over an accident that occurred in Williams Township on Interstate 78 West. According to police, a man from Nazareth, Pennsylvania, switched lanes while driving a 2016 Ford Taurus. When he did so, a 2008 Nissan Pathfinder, which was driven by a woman from New Jersey, struck the Taurus and then the back of a 2007 International Harvester 9200i. That truck was driven by someone from Auburn, Pennsylvania.

The truck was able to pull over onto the right should. The Nissan also came to a stop on the right shoulder, although it had spun around and was facing the wrong direction. The Taurus stopped in the left lane.

There were six passengers in the Nissan, including two 9-year-olds and a 1-year-old. The driver of the Nissan was transported to the hospital with unknown injuries.

The driver of the Ford was also taken to the hospital, but his injuries were not known. The driver of the truck was not injured.

The 68-year-old driver of the Ford, according to police, was cited for a lane violation. The 28-year-old driver of the Nissan was cited for driving without a license. The Nissan and the Ford both were towed from the accident scene.

Source: Lehigh Valley Live, “3-vehicle wreck caused by Nazareth man on I-78 injures 2, police say,” Tony Rhodin, March 31, 2016

Stress can result in a workers’ compensation claim

Do you find yourself stressed at work? If so, you are in the same position as millions of other Americans. It may not be typical, but there are times…

Do you find yourself stressed at work? If so, you are in the same position as millions of other Americans. It may not be typical, but there are times when stress can result in a workers’ compensation claim. This doesn’t mean you can make a claim just because you are stressed. Instead, you need to answer a few questions before deciding what to do next:

— Has the stress led to a permanent impairment?

— Did you experience stress in excess of what is normally expected for your position?

— Are you able to prove that the cause of the stress was directly related to your job?

There are many types of workplace injuries that are considered common. For example, a broken bone related to a warehouse accident is something that companies and workers’ compensation providers may expect.

On the flipside, the same cannot be said of stress related claims. These are psychological in nature, making them difficult to prove. But even with the higher standard of proof, it is possible to file this type of claim.

If stress causes extreme anxiety, maybe even resulting in an emotional breakdown, the employee may have the right to file a workers’ compensation claim.

There is nothing simple about a workers’ compensation claim associated with stress. Even though this can be a challenge to prove, it is something that many before you have done so successfully. If your stress is above and beyond what most would consider normal, you may need to file a claim as you are unable to perform your job duties with your current condition.

Source: American Bar Association, “Stressed at Work? You Might Have a Workers Compensation Claim,” accessed March 29, 2016