Trees can be inspiring and beautiful — but they can also be dangerous, and even deadly. While trees may appear to be safely anchored into the ground, appearances can be deceiving. A tree can look perfectly sturdy when in reality, it has already been fatally weakened by poor soil, insect infestation, or other factors. When a tree is unhealthy or has been improperly maintained by the property owner, it can pose a serious threat to innocent passerby.
Because trees and tree limbs are enormously heavy and often fall rapidly and unexpectedly, the injuries they cause are almost always severe. Not only do tree accidents cause physical injury, they often leave their victims with emotional scars. After an accident, injury survivors and family members who have lost loved ones often struggle to cope with feelings of anxiety, fear, anger, and depression. To make matters even worse, tree injuries frequently lead to enormous medical bills which place survivors under huge financial strain.
If you or someone you love was hurt by a tree fall accident caused by negligent property maintenance, you may be able to recover financial damages for all the pain you have endured. The premises liability attorneys of Reiff & Bily can help.
Reiff & Bily: Pennsylvania Tree Fall Injury Lawyers
You and your family have been forced to shoulder a terrible burden. Because of another person or company’s choices and actions, you have been condemned to months or years of physical suffering, emotional trauma, and financial hardship. You and your loved ones deserve to see justice done.
At the law offices of Reiff & Bily, we have highly experienced tree fall injury attorneys with a record of excellence. For over 34 years, our seasoned lawyers have been representing Pennsylvanians in Bucks County, Berks County, Lancaster County, Lehigh County, Philadelphia, and more. We have made multiple recoveries exceeding $1 million, and have won hundreds of millions for our clients since 1979. If you have been hurt by a tree fall accident, our knowledgeable legal team is here to advocate on your behalf.
To schedule your free consultation, call Reiff & Bily today at (215) 274-0072.
Tree Fall Injury Statistics
Tree falls are more common than you might expect. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) reports that roughly 100 tree fall injuries occur in the United States every year — that’s one incident every few days. For those who work around trees, such as loggers and arborists, injury rates are as much as 10-30 times higher than the average accident rate per industry. Tree fall accidents have recently occurred in Pennsylvania, according to our injury lawyers. In 2009, 23-year-old jogger Mary Ladany was fatally struck by a falling tulip poplar branch in Philadelphia’s popular Fairmount Park. The branch which tragically killed Ladany was 30 feet long and fell from 50 feet above. When non-fatal, falling trees and tree branches often cause terrible physical damage. Common tree fall injuries include:
- Broken Bones
- Crush Injuries
- Head/Neck Injuries
- Internal Bleeding
- Organ Damage
- Spinal Cord Injury (SCI)
- Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI)
Who is Liable for Tree Fall Injuries?
Trees that are diseased or infested with insects are not structurally sound, and are more likely to fall or break during windy or stormy weather. Dead trees and trees whose roots have been exposed from soil erosion can fall at average wind speeds. While damaged trees may be toppled by wind, natural forces alone are not responsible. Such trees would have been safe if appropriate maintenance measures were taken. In other words, most tree accidents involve premises liability.
If a landowner knows that a tree on his or her property is hazardous but fails to correct the problem, that landowner may be held responsible if the tree falls and injures someone. Some courts have held landowners liable for damage caused by falling trees where the owner should have known or realized a tree on his or her property was likely to fall.
Tree fall accidents can also occur if someone carelessly trims branches without monitoring where the branches are falling. Property owners have a duty to prevent weakened, dead, and dangerous trees from causing injuries to passerby. This includes trimming branches that become too large, removing dead or diseased trees, and regularly inspecting trees to determine if they are at risk of falling. If a landowner fails to take these reasonable steps, he or she may be financially liable for injuries that occur as a result.
If you or a loved one was seriously injured by a falling tree or tree branch, a Philadelphia premises liability attorney from Reiff & Bily can fight for compensation and justice on your behalf. To schedule your confidential, no-cost consultation, call us today at (215) 274-0072, or contact us online.