Enhanced Bucks County DUI Patrols Beginning at 10:00 PM This Evening

As highlighted in our most recent article, Thanksgiving Eve marks the beginning of an increase in DUI patrols in the local area with the objective of cracking down on accidents, injuries and deaths caused by impaired driving throughout Pennsylvania during the holiday season.
DUI PIC
An article published in the Newtown Patch, a source for local news in Bucks County, details the county’s planned attack to monitor impaired driving throughout the county this evening. According to the article, linked here, police units from eight (8) separate departments will be out this evening with the objective of detecting and deterring drunk driving.

In what is anticipated to be “the most heavily traveled Thanksgiving in almost a decade”, the Bucks County District Attorney’s Office intends to combat the potential for a heightened number of impaired drivers by rolling out DUI patrols who will be roving along the Street Road corridor.

According to the article in the Newtown Patch, starting at 10:00 PM this evening “21 police from Bensalem, Middletown, Solebury, Upper Southampton, Warrington and Warwick Townships, as well as Newtown and Penndel Boroughs, will patrol the four-lane thoroughfare from Bensalem to Warrington, as well as its feeder streets, until approximately 3 a.m. Thursday…”

To understand why Bucks County is taking such a progressive and aggressive stance against drunk driving, the Newtown Patch provides the following startling data. Just in Pennsylvania, the Thanksgiving weekend was the third-deadliest holiday period in 2015. There were 1,428 crashes, which resulted in 21 traffic deaths. These statistics provide a very clear picture of exactly why Bucks County has targeted Thanksgiving Eve as a night to unveil its most recent strategy to deter impaired driving. Furthermore, as cited in the Newtown Patch article, ten (10) drivers were arrested on suspicion of driving under the influence just last year.

As noted in our previous article, the upcoming holiday season should be one of joy and festivities celebrated with family and friends. Please take special note of this early alert regarding the presence of impaired drivers on the road, the heightened police awareness, and to always think twice before getting behind the wheel after imbibing in the holiday spirits.

Legal Disclaimer: The contents of this website are intended solely for informational purposes. They neither constitute nor imply an official legal opinion on behalf of Howland, Hess, Guinan, Torpey, Cassidy and O’Connell, LLP, nor do they establish an attorney-client relationship of any kind. Howland Hess O’Connell encourages all readers to seek and consult professional counsel before acting upon the information contained on this site.

Advertisements

Thanksgiving Eve: The Beginning of the DUI Danger Zone

It should be no surprise to most to hear that the Thanksgiving weekend is the most traveled holiday period of the year. Students are returning home from college and families are traveling from all over to be together for the holiday. But did you know that DUI arrests are categorically at their highest between Thanksgiving Eve and the end of New Year’s weekend? That means we are now entering what can be described as the “DUI Danger Zone”.

For that reason, you can expect police presence to be ramping up in the following week and continuing into the New Year. This means more DUI Checkpoints as well as patrol forces out specifically for monitoring potentially impaired driving.

To understand why Thanksgiving marks the beginning of this ramped up police presence and concentration on DUI detection and accident prevention, consider the following. In 2013, over 300 people died in motor vehicle accidents nationally just during the Thanksgiving weekend. In 2014, and just in Pennsylvania alone, there were 499 crashes reported over Thanksgiving weekend and 13 deaths attributable to impaired driving.

The time-frame between Thanksgiving and New Years is a festive time intended to be celebrated with family and friends. That said, it is important to remain smart, alert and safe. Please take special note of this early alert regarding the presence of impaired drivers on the road and also to think twice before getting behind the wheel this holiday season.

Legal Disclaimer: The contents of this website are intended solely for informational purposes. They neither constitute nor imply an official legal opinion on behalf of Howland, Hess, Guinan, Torpey, Cassidy and O’Connell, LLP, nor do they establish an attorney-client relationship of any kind. Howland Hess O’Connell encourages all readers to seek and consult professional counsel before acting upon the information contained on this site.

Recently Enacted Medicare Regulations Ban the Use of Nursing Home Arbitration Agreements

In a vast majority of nursing home contracts, one can expect to find a provision calling for arbitration as a means of binding dispute resolution. However, on September 28, 2016, the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services enacted a new rule prohibiting the use of arbitration clauses in nursing-home contracts which require patients and their families to settle any disputes over care through arbitration rather than through the court system. The rule was published officially on October 4th and goes into effect November 28th, 2016. To be subject to this new Rule, the facility must be receiving federal funding from Medicare or Medicaid.

To be more exact, the Rule mandates that long-term care facilities (a/k/a nursing homes) are precluded from entering into agreements with patients which call for mandatory resolution through arbitration. Under the new rule, a facility may not require a resident or a resident’s representative to sign an arbitration agreement as a condition of admission to the facility.

It is worth noting that this Rule does not prevent a patient and facility from entering into a binding arbitration agreement after a dispute arises, just that it cannot be a part of the admission agreement or a condition of entry. Additionally, this new Rule does not impact nursing home agreements entered into by a patient and facility prior to November 28, 2016. Those agreements, and any provisions mandating pre-dispute arbitration, are not affected by this Rule.

The team of attorneys at Howland, Hess, Guinan, Torpey, Cassidy & O’Connell, LLP are well-versed in the area of Elder Law and have extensive experience in representing both patients and facilities in legal disputes involving nursing homes. If you have any questions about the information in this article or are interested in getting more specific information regarding the impact of these changes to the law, the attorneys at Howland Hess O’Connell are available to assist you today. Call for a free consultation at (215)-947-6240 or contact us online to schedule a meeting.

Legal Disclaimer: The contents of this website are intended solely for informational purposes. They neither constitute nor imply an official legal opinion on behalf of Howland, Hess, Guinan, Torpey, Cassidy and O’Connell nor do they establish an attorney-client relationship of any kind. Howland Hess O’Connell encourages all readers to seek and consult professional counsel before acting upon the information contained on this site.