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.

Articles Posted in Auto Accidents

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A pedestrian was killed and six other were injured by a reckless driver on Canal Street in Chinatown, New York last week.  A surveillance video of the accident shows 70 year old Henry Herman of Monroe, NY, backing up for at least half a block and then crashing into pedestrians on the busy sidewalk near the intersection of Forsyth and Canal Street. People were in shock as was the driver. He came out of his car, checked on the people he hit and said “My god” according to a witness. It was raining at the time of the accident and it may have affected the driver’s vision. The police believe the driver was accelerating into a parking spot and he might have lost control and jumped the curve. He was arrested and charged with failure to yield to pedestrian and failure to exercise due care.

56 year old Chun Deng Zhang from Queens died in the accident. Two other people were critically injured. Four others suffered non-life threatening injuries.

See video surveillance in the NY Post

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teens riding with teensA recent study by the AAA Foundation found that crashes involving a teen driver with other teen passengers in the car are 515% more deadly for road users than crashes involving a teen driver with passengers older than 35.

When teens ride together in a car and they are involved in an accident the fatality rate increases by:

  • 17% for pedestrians and cyclists
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location of the deadly car accidentA man died and a woman was injured in a car crash in New York City last Friday night. According to the NY Daily News the driver of a white 2001 Nissan Sentra was driving East on Rockaway Boulevard around 10:30 pm. He was planning to make a left turn onto Guy R Brewer Boulevard. When he arrived at the intersection the left turn light was red and a tow truck operated by Onpoint Collision and Towing Services was in front of him. The tow truck driver told the News that the reckless driver went around his truck on the right and then proceeded to turn left to get onto Guy R Brewer Boulevard. In order to do so he had to cross several lanes of traffic. He was T-boned by a white BMW that slammed in the car’s door. The tow truck driver confirmed that the woman who was driving the BMW had the green light. He saw the entire accident including when the EMS arrived and pulled the driver out of his car. The emergency team tried to resuscitate him but according to the tow truck driver, the man seemed dead. He was transported to the hospital where his death was confirmed. The BMW driver was also taken to the hospital to be treated for non-life threatening injuries.

Read more in the NY Daily News

Picture: Courtesy of Google Map

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accident sceneA 30 year old pregnant woman died in a NYC crash and a teenage girl is in a coma with serious spine injury that may prevent her from walking again. On Saturday morning, 30 year old Jennifer Parisella, a farmer from Middeltown was on her way to a farmers market in the city when she rear ended a tractor-trailer on the Major Deegan Expressway near Brook Avenue around 7:00 am. The young woman who was five months into the pregnancy of her first child died at the scene of the accident.  Her two stepchildren, 14 year old Sky Mendoza and 12 year old Orlando Mendoza were also in the van. They were sitting on the back seat. A 28 year old man who was a relative of the family was in the front passenger seat. Sky Mendoza suffered critical brain and spine injury. She is still in a coma and she might never walk again. Orlando suffered a broken collarbone and the 28 year old man injured his leg.

The police are still investigating the reason of the crash. The 42 year old truck driver stayed at the scene of the accident. He wasn’t charged.

Read more in the New York Post 

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Dusk and Darness Accident PreventionThe NYPD announced last week that A NYC pedestrian died from his injuries the day after an accident that occurred in the Bronx on November 7th around 6:30 pm.  52 year old Alvaro Gutierrez was crossing Southern  Boulevard at Elsmere Place when he was struck by a minivan.  Gutierrez who was hit in the crosswalk, flew in the air and landed on the roadway. He was transported to the hospital where he died the following day. The minivan driver wasn’t charged.

Winter is the worst season for pedestrians

Statistics show that, in New York, after daylight saving time ends, pedestrian accidents increase dramatically, especially during evening hours. The months of November to March are the deadliest for New York pedestrians. To boost awareness about this situation and encourage drivers to drive safely the city has been deploying its ‘Dusk And Darkness’ Vision Zero Safety Initiative for the third consecutive year.

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pedestrianSix NYC pedestrians were killed after being hit by cars in six different accidents in Queens over the last 10 days.

On Sunday night around 6:30 pm, a 29 year old man was killed by a hit and run driver on Continental Avenue near Exeter Street in Forest Hill. Niklas Ahern from Tribeca was walking next to a female friend on Continental Avenue when a grey or silver four door sedan struck Niklas and sped off in the night leaving the young man unconscious lying on the street with trauma all over his body. The driver was found by the police on Monday. 28 year old Irving Duran was charged with leaving the scene of a fatal crash. Read more in the NY Daily News

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dSbIyGfb0Lc

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New York Pedestrian Accident Lawyer Rachel JacobsNYC pedestrian accident attorney james rubinowitzTwo of our young NYC personal injury attorneys, Rachel Jacobs and James Rubinowitz, were invited last Monday night to share their skills with the students of the Cardozo Law School’s Intensive Trial Advocacy Program (ITAP). During this two-week immersion program, students are taught cutting-edge strategies for courtroom litigation under the instruction of leading jurists and lawyers from across the country. The program is a cornerstone of Cardozo’s practical skills curriculum.

Rachel and James just finished a trial during which they represented the four adult children of a 90 year old pedestrian who was fatally struck by a motor vehicle as she was crossing a street in New York City.  They presented to the students of the Intensive Trial Advocacy Program (ITAP) the opening statement and the summation that they gave to the jury at trial.

The pedestrian suffered excruciating pain and suffering before she died

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While the number of traffic fatalities is on the rise nationally, in New York, most probably because of the many Vision Zero Initiatives launched over the last five years, traffic fatalities were at their lowest during the third trimester of 2018 compared to the third trimester of the five previous years. The decline in traffic fatalities during the summer of 2018 is due to the decrease in pedestrians and cyclists fatalities while the number of motorist fatalities was at its highest since the beginning of Vision Zero.

From July 1st to September 30 2018, 59 people lost their life in NYC auto accidents compare to respectively 65, 61, 60, 76 and 82 during the same period of 2017, 2016, 2015, 2014 and 2013. It is interesting to notice that there are now as many motorists deaths as pedestrian deaths. Pedestrians used to be the category of road users the most at risk of dying in trafic accidents. However according to the most recent statistics drivers now have as much risk as pedestrians of getting killed in a traffic accident in New York City. Total traffic fatalities in New York City third trimester 2018

A record number of 16,300 people were injured in car accidents in New York City during the third trimester of 2018 compared to respectively 15,860, 16,048, 13,998, 13,472 and 14,900 during the third trimester of 2017, 2016, 2015, 2014 and 2013.  Not only in New York but all over the US, distracted driving has led to a significant increase in motorist injuries. Over the last 3 years and despite Vision Zero intense efforts to make New York City Streets safer, the number of motorists injured in car accidents in New York has been increasing tremendously.

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marijuanaTwo recent studies indicate that States that had legalized the recreational use of marijuana have seen a significant increase in car accidents compared to States that haven’t legalized marijuana for recreational use.  One of the studies was released by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) and  the other one by the Highway Loss Data Institute (HLDI). These two studies were presented last week at the Combating Alcohol- and Drug-Impaired Driving Summit, that was hosted by IIHS and HLDI.  The study presented by HLDI looked at collision claims per insured vehicle in the Sates of  Colorado, Nevada, Oregon and Washington compared to the States of  Idaho, Montana, Utah and Wyoming from January 2012 to 2017. Researchers found that the frequency of collision claims per insured vehicle rose a combined 6 percent by year in the States that started the retail sale of Marijuana compared to the States where Marijuana is still a controlled substance. The study presented by IIHS compared the change in crash rate in Colorado, Oregon and Washington with neighboring States that didn’t enact recreational marijuana laws and found a 5.2% increase in the rate of crashes in States that authorized the recreational use of Marijuana compared to the States that didn’t authorize it.

The numbers found by both teams of researchers are consistent with each other however because the police still have no proper tool to detect if a driver was under the effect of Marijuana when involved in an accident it is difficult to prove that the legalization of marijuana make roads less safe.

While alcohol tests after an accident are pretty reliable, there are still no available tools to test if a marijuana user was impaired by the drug at the time of the accident. Because THC remains in the body for a long period of time after the substance is  consumed, a positive THC test doesn’t imply that the driver was high behind the wheels.

 

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NYC ambulance accidents3 people suffered personal injury in an ambulance accident in New York City. The accident occurred Tuesday morning around 7:30 a.m. on East Fordham Road at Elm Place. The FDNY ambulance careened into an optical store after it collided with a car. The ambulance was on its way to a call. Two FDNY workers who were in the ambulance as well as one of the car occupants were injured and rushed to the hospital. Thankfully there were no pedestrians on the sidewalk or in the store which was closed.

Ambulance accidents are unfortunately occurring too often in New York City. Despite having special exemption from stopping at red-lights and stop signs as well as from speed limits ambulance drivers still have to be mindful of pedestrians, cyclists and other motor vehicles. Pedestrians and cyclists are especially vulnerable to being run down by speeding ambulances. When such accidents occur, it is not always easy for the victims or their family to get proper compensation for their injuries or the loss of a loved one because of what is known as the “emergency doctrine” pursuant to which emergency responders involved in accidents  on emergency calls can’t be held responsible unless they drove with reckless disregard for the safety of others.

Almost 100 ambulance accidents every month in NYC