Gair, Gair, Conason, Rubinowitz, Bloom, Hershenhorn, Steigman & Mackauf is a New York Plaintiff's personal injury law firm specializing in automobile accidents, construction accidents, medical malpractice, products liability, police misconduct and all types of New York personal injury litigation.
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Bicycles are a common means of transportation, recreation and exercise throughout New York. Bicycles offer very little in terms of protection from the hazards confronting a bicyclist on the roadways of New York. This can, and often does, lead to severe and catastrophic injuries to bicyclists when an accident occurs. Unfortunately, a large percentage of persons injured in bicycle accidents are children. To read more on how we can assist you click here.

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Compartment Syndrome occurs when the pressure within a closed anatomic space (a compartment) becomes so elevated that capillary perfusion is compromised. Any closed anatomic space including the abdominal cavity is at risk of developing a compartment syndrome. Abdominal compartment syndrome is a clinical disease spectrum that results from increased intra-abdominal pressure (IAP) due to tissue edema or free fluid collecting in the abdominal cavity. Click above to read more.

Abdomen Anatomy

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Recent studies have found that fatal construction accidents in New york City have been occurring mostly on construction sites where non union workers were hired. According to  The New York Committee for Occupational Safety and Health (NYCOSH) an average of 80% of the workers dying in fatal falls on a New York construction site are non union workers (see previous blog). Today in an article in the NY Daily News, politicians and labor groups are asking the city to classify all recorded construction accidents by union or non union.

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Northern Boulevard and Prince aerial viewA pedestrian was fatally struck by a car in New York City last night. The 79 year old man was crossing the street at the intersection of Northern Boulevard and Prince Street in Flushing, Queens, when he was struck by a SUV.  The driver was a 56 year old woman. She stayed at the scene of the accident and wasn’t charged. The pedestrian was transported to the hospital in critical condition. He later died from his injuries according to the NY Daily News.

Northern Boulevard is considered one of the most dangerous arterial roads in New York City. When mayor de Blasio signed 11 Vision Zero bills into law he held his press conference on Northern Boulevard and 61st Street.  This is where 8 year old Nashat Nahian (whose family is represented by our firm) was killed by a  truck driver on his way to school.

Northern Boulevard is a Vision Zero Priority Corridor. To reduce pedestrian deaths on the Northern Boulevard, the DOT recently presented several safety projects to local community boards such as Northern Blvd – Honeywell St to Broadway Corridor Safety Improvements and the Northern Boulevard – 105 St to 114 St Corridor Safety Improvements.

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Car accidents are the number one cause of fatalities among teens. 2,679 teens died and 123,000 were injured in car accidents in 2014 in the US according to the most recent statistics. Distracted driving including distraction from other passengers, speeding, alcohol use and lack of seat belts are among the main factors contributing to these accidents. To raise awareness about these dangers and in an attempt to prevent teens from dying or being injured in car crashes the Congress created the National Teen Driver Safety Week in 2007. National Teen Drivers Safety Week 2016 starts Today for the ninth consecutive year. During this week, schools and communities will conduct campaigns related to this issue.  If you want to get involved in your community or learn more about National Teen Driver Safety Week you can find campaign material here.


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3415 Neptune Ave street viewA baby girl died in an elevator accident in New York City on Thursday.  Her mother was also injured in the accident. She was expected to survive. Last  Thursday around 10:30 am, 21 year old Aber Al-Rabahi put her 6 month old daughter Areej Ali in her stroller and headed out of her apartment for a walk. Aber Al-Rabahi and her daughter called the elevator on the 23rd floor of of the Sea Rise, a residential building located at 3415 Neptune Avenue, in Coney Island, Brooklyn. As the elevator doors opened, the mother pushed the stroller inside and walked in without  realizing that the car was stuck 6 feet below. The mother landed on the top of her daughter on the roof of the elevator. The elevator fell down eight stories where the the mom and her daughter landed on the roof. A maintenance worker who heard the mother screaming ran to the rescue. The mother and the infant were both transported to the hospital. The infant was pronounced dead on arrival at the hospital. The mother is expected to survive.

Neighbors told the NY Daily News that both elevators in the building were constantly having problems. On Wednesday night tenants complained that the elevator was not functioning proprely. A mechanic from Centennial Elevator Co. had arrived an hour before the accident. He was working on the elevator when the accident happened. Centennial Elevator has two open OSHA investigations . One of them is related to one of their employees who lost an arm  while repairing an elevator in New York City last May (see previous blog).

According to the Gothamist, this is the second time that someone was killed in an elevator accident at the Sea Rise Complex. In 1991, Chandler  Johnson bumped into the door of the same elevator. The door opened and Chandler fell to his death down the shaft. Since the young man died, there were 147 elevator violations in the building.

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Patient identification : executive summary coverWrong patient error is medical malpractice that can have deadly consequences. As healthcare is becoming more and more sophisticated, patients are visiting multiple care providers and their personal data are being shared through multiple IT systems. The growing complexity of the health care system has led to an increase in patient errors according to a recent report released by the ECRI Institute.

The report entitled “Deep Dive” is based on the analysis of more than 7,500 events of patient identification errors.  The researchers found that most identification errors are corrected before they affect the patients. However some do reach the patients. Some patient identification errors may have limited consequences. For example, a nursing home resident was mistaken for another resident and taken for an unnecessary exam to an affiliated hospital. Other identification errors can have dangerous consequences. An infant was infected with hepatitis B after receiving breast milk pumped from the wrong mother. Some wrong patient errors can be fatal. A patient who suffered cardiac arrest was not resuscitated because the medical staff followed a “do-not-resuscitate” order from another patient.

Wrong patient errors can happen at all stages of a medical process, from registration to electronic data entry, surgical intervention, medication administration, diagnostic or blood transfusion. They can occur in various settings such as nursing homes, doctor offices, hospitals or pharmacies. They are not only committed by doctors but also by nurses, transporters, medical secretaries or anyone else from the medical staff interacting with the patient. Often as the patient is mistaken for another one, the error doesn’t affect only one person but two.

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NYCHA_Logo_480x480Two toddlers died in a fire last April in a Bronx apartment belonging to the New York City Housing Authority. The investigation found that the apartment was visited four hours earlier by Rene Rivera, a former NYCHA maintenance employee. When a NYCHA worker visits an apartment they have to execute several safety checks that include smoke detectors check. The employee signed on his report that the smoke detectors were working in the apartment he just visited. He later confessed to investigators that he actually never looked at them. The employee’s failure to check the smoke detectors resulted in the death of two toddlers in a fire a few hours after his visit.

In an article Today in the NY Daily News, Rivera complains that the work overload at the Butler Houses was such that he didn’t have much time for safety checks.  Rivera blames the faulty error on an understaffed crew and unrelenting pressure to keep things moving. The 27-year NYCHA veteran worker explained that he was overwhelmed by the 25 to 30 appointments he had to respond to every day.

Read more in the NY Daily News

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Rear End CollisionThe Traffic Injury Prevention Journal  recently released a study comparing traffic accidents involving novice teen drivers and experienced adults. The study uses data from the Strategic Highway Research Program 2 (SHRP2) Naturalistic Driving Study. Naturalistic driving is a new approach of analyzing driving behavior. In the SHRP2 naturalistic driving study, 2,360 drivers of all ages and genders across the US agreed to have their driving behavior electronically monitored. For a specific period of time, each participant’s car was equipped with high tech data-collecting devices that analyzed their day to day driving activities and behavior.

A team led by researchers from the Center for Injury Research and Prevention at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia used the naturalistic driving data to compare crash rates and rear-end striking crashes among novice teens and experienced adults.  Researchers found 539 crashes involving novice teen drivers (16 to 19 years old) or experienced adult drivers (35 to 54 years old). They looked at data from onboard instrumentation such as scene cameras, accelerometers and GPS to  identify rear-end crashes. Each of these rear-end collisions were then analyzed to obtain information about impact velocity and severity of the crash.

The study found that rear-end crashes represented 43% of all significant at-fault crashes. Novice teen drivers had a crash rate of 30 per million miles driven and a rear-end striking crash rate of 13.5 compared to respectively 5.3 and 1.8 per million miles driven for experienced adult drivers. The median impact velocity for rear-end crashes was 18.9 mph for novice drivers and 2.8 mph for experienced drivers. Rear-end crash severity was also higher for teens than for adults.

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LIRR_Train33 people suffered personal injury in a train crash in Long Island, NY on Saturday night. A Long Island Rail Road (LIRR) train carrying 600 passengers sideswiped a maintenance train and derailed just East of the New Hide Park station in Nassau County. The accident occurred around 9:00 pm. The Huntington Bound passenger train was coming from New York City. After the crash, scared passengers were trapped in the dark for up to an hour until they could be rescued. Among the people injured, 27 were passengers and 7 were workers. The New York Times reported 4 serious injuries.

In a press conference, NY Governor Cuomo told reporters that the accident could have been worse. He also said that the maintenance train violated clearance and intruded into the space of the commuter train. The passenger train sideswiped the maintenance train causing some cars to derail. Yellow paint from the maintenance train was found on the passenger train where the side swipe occurred.

Further investigation by the National Transportation Safety Board  will determine why the maintenance train violated clearance. Regulations related to operation of work equipment are different than regulations related to operation of passenger trains. According to Union sources the maintenance train was operated by a non union LIRR employee.