RICHARD D. LINDERMAN
Richard D. Linderman, Esq., is a graduate of Pottstown High School, West Chester University, and received his law degree from Duquesne University in Pittsburgh. He resides with his wife, Virginia, in Pottstown and is the father of one daughter and grandfather of two grandsons and a granddaughter.
Mr. Linderman is a Senior Partner of O’Donnell, Weiss & Mattei, P.C., and his areas of practice include Litigation, Estate Planning and Estate Administration. He has been very active in the TriCounty Area Chamber of Commerce, having served as its pro bono solicitor for 25 years. In addition, he has taught at Penn State Berks Campus and Montgomery County Community College, West Campus.
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The material in this publication was created as of the date set forth above and is based on laws, court decisions, administrative rulings and congressional materials that existed at that time, and should not be construed as legal advice or legal opinions on specific facts. The information in this publication is not intended to create, and the transmission and receipt of it does not constitute, a lawyer-client relationship.
HIGHWAY FUNDING AND DISTRACTIVE DRIVING
The O’Donnell, Weiss & Mattei Law Firm presented a television program during the month of June featuring the American Automobile Club (AAA). O’Donnell, Weiss & Mattei (OWM) moderated the program. Dick Linderman, one of the senior partners at the law firm, annually hosts Ted Leonard and Theresa Podguski, who are both associated with AAA. Mr. Leonard is the Executive Director of the PA AAA Federation in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, and Theresa Podguski is the Director of Legislative Affairs at AAA East Central.
The primary focus of the two segments of the program was a transportation funding bill entitled Act 89 which Governor Corbett signed in 2013. The second issue that was discussed was distractive driving as it pertains to text messaging and cell phone conversations while actively driving a motor vehicle.
Act 89 was strongly supported by Mr. Leonard and Ms. Podguski. Both guests stated that our Pennsylvania transportation infrastructure is deficient and in some cases obsolete. For example, 36% of our major roads are rated in poor or mediocre condition, and 44% of our Pennsylvania bridges are structurally deficient and or functionally obsolete. What Act 89 did was invest an additional 2.3 billion dollars into the state’s roads and bridges over a five-year plan. 10,000 roadway miles will be improved or rebuilt, and thousands of bridges will be improved as well.
One of the major projects being funded by Act 89 is the Route 422 pavement, bridge and interchange improvements at the Armand Hammer interchange in Lower Pottsgrove/Pottstown. This work began last year and will take a few more years to complete.
Cell phone use and text messaging while driving was the second topic of discussion. There is no true number of crashes attributed to cell phone use and text messaging. Drivers simply have no motivation to admit that they were not paying attention, and cell records are usually subpoenaed only in cases of serious injury or death. However, more than two trillion text messages were sent in the United States in 2012. That was more than six times the number reported just five years before.
In Pennsylvania, we have a texting ban which went into effect two years ago. The law prohibits any driver from using an interactive wireless device to send, read or write a text-based notation while his or her vehicle is in motion. It is considered a primary offense, which means that a police officer can stop you if he or she observes you sending a text message while driving. Ms. Podguski stated, “Common sense tells us that texting while driving takes your eyes off the road, your hands off the wheel and focus away from the act of driving.” She stated that 44 states have passed text-messaging-while-driving bans. AAA Clubs continue to work to get laws passed in the remaining six states.
Text messaging merits special attention due to the significant eyes-off-road time involved in writing, reading and sending messages in addition to cognitive distraction similar to what is involved in other distractive driving behaviors. AAA recommends that motorists turn off their phones before driving or pull over to a safe location to talk, send text messages or use e-mail. Clearly, text messaging presents a clear and persistent danger to all drivers on the road.
If you would care to discuss the above in detail, please call me at 610-323-2800 or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Also, please watch OWM's July 2014 Legal Talk program regarding Highway Funding and Distractive Driving on our website here.
OWM Law sponsoring First Friday celebration in Phoenixville on 8/1/14, 9/5/14 and 10/3/14.
James C. Kovaleski, Esq., and Rebecca A. Hobbs, Esq., speaking at Spring Mills Senior Living, Phoenixville, PA on 7/16/14 at 5:00 p.m. regarding "Basic Estate Planning: The Three Key Documents" (contact Spring Mills Senior Living at 1-888-933-2900).
David A. Megay, Esq., speaking at Chester County Night School Seminars (6:30p.m.-8:30p.m.) at Owen J. Roberts High School, Pottstown, PA, on 9/24/14 entitled "Starting Your Own Business" and on 10/29/14 entitled "Buying and Selling Real Estate in PA" (contact Chester County Night School at 610-692-1964 or online at www.chestercountynightschool.org).
David A. Megay, Esq. speaking at a SCORE Business Planning Seminar on 10/30/14 at 7:00 p.m., at New York Plaza, Suite 102, 244 High St., Pottstown, PA (contact SCORE at 610-327-2673).
Watch Legal Talk, brought to you by OWM, on PCTV, Tuesdays at 8:30 on Channel 28, and Thursdays at 9:30 p.m. on Channel 98, or on our website here.