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 Personal Injury

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A welder died and another construction worker was seriously injured after a building collapsed on a NYC construction site yesterday.

50 year old David Johnson, a father of two daughters going to college, was working on the demolition of a building located at 147-05 94th Ave in Jamaica, Queens, when the second floor where he was standing collapsed.  Johnson and another unidentified worker were buried in the debris. When firefighters arrived, the condition were so bad that they had to use ladder trucks to free the victims. Johnson was pronounced dead at the scene of the accident. Hi co-worker was transported to the hospital with critical injury.

Johnson was an unionized welder with Local 79.  He took the job at the non unionized  demolition site run by the general contractor Cole Partners Inc because it was hard for him to find work. Before the accident, Leslie White, another member of Local 79 who worked as a safety supervisor on another site told him the day before “that thing is going to collapse”. Johnson told her not to worry.

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skull-breaker-challenge-victimSeveral children and teenagers recently suffered serious personal injury after they were pranked by others in a new disturbing challenge on the popular app Tik Tok called “The skull breaker challenge”.  The prank requires two people to ask a third person to stand in line with them and take turns jumping. The person pranked is placed in the middle and when she or he jumps the two others kick their feet out from under making the person in the middle fall backward.  A 12 year old kid in Alabama ended up at the hospital with a broken wrist. Another 16 year old girl in Miami was also hurt in the same prank after she was told by other kids that they were shooting a video for a school project. A 13 year old  boy in New Jersey suffered a concussion followed by a seizure. His mother said that she arrived at the school 20 minutes after the accident and found her son unresponsive while the school was waiting for an ambulance.

SERIOUS INJURIES AND DEATH

Falling backward can not only result in serious injury but can also be deadly. Severe injuries of the neck and head can occur when falling backward. Bruises, hematoma, skull fracture, neck fracture and concussion are the most common injuries suffered in these type of accidents. Internal bleeding, loss of consciousness, paralysis and death can also occur in the worst cases.

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train-accident-prevention
Did you know that 95% of fatal train accidents were caused by vehicles at train crossings and pedestrians on tracks? Every 3 hours in the US someone is hit by a train. Most of these accidents are preventable.

According to preliminary Federal Rail Road Administration Statistics, 262 people died and 871 were injured in 2,296 collisions with trains in 2018 in the US. 2,217 collisions occurred at highway-rail grade crossings. Pedestrian rail trespassing resulted in 1015 causalities (fatalities and injuries).  California and Texas have the most accidents  for both highway-rail grade crossings and trespassing.  New York ranked number 4 of  all states with the most pedestrian trespassing causalities. 36 people died and 13 were injured while trespassing on New York railroads in 2018.

Tips for New York Pedestrians to stay safe near railroads

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Two years ago one of our clients, actress Ruthie Ann Miles and her five year old daughter were struck by a reckless driver as they were crossing the street in the crosswalk with the light in their favor. The daughter was killed and the actress who was pregnant at the time of the accident, later on lost the baby she was carrying. Another 1 year old child was also killed in the accident. The driver, Dorothy Burns, had a history of reckless driving. In the year preceding the accident she was caught 4 times speeding in school zone areas and 4 other times running a red light.

Despite the many Vision Zero Initiatives implemented since 2014, the number of people dying in traffic accidents increased again last year after 4 years of decline. Many accidents were caused by reckless driving.

In an effort to address this problem, the City Council is about to adopt a new program that targets reckless drivers. The reckless driving initiative is expected to start as a 3 years pilot. During that time any owner of a vehicle that is charged with 5 red light camera violations or 15 speed camera violations in a year will have to complete a safety course developed by the DOT. If a reckless driver refuses to attend the safety course his vehicle may be seized.

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New York Train Accident Lawyer Richard SteigmanOur partner Richard Steigman will be chairing the New York State Trial Lawyers Institute 2020 CPLR Update Seminar next month in New York. Honorable Ariel E. Belen (Ret.), FCIArb, JAMS Mediator & Arbitrator, Justice, Appellate Division, Second Department will also be part of the faculty.

“One of the key requirements of successfully managing a civil caseload is staying abreast of legislative changes and court decisions in the field of New York Civil Practice. This year in particular, there are substantial changes that every lawyer in this field needs to know. This seminar will provide an in-depth review of these new developments, including practice tips and pitfall warnings that are invaluable for the civil litigator.”

The seminar will take place on Wednesday February 12th from 6:00 pm to 9:00 pm at the NYSTLA office located at 132 Nassau Street, 2nd floor in New York, NY. Click here for more info or to register

 

 

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aerial-view-of-the-Grand-Central-Parkway-and-Cross-Island-Parkway-exit3 people died and one person was seriously injured in a wrong-way car accident in Queens, NYC. The accident took place on Saturday morning around 5:40 am. 27 year old Divante New was driving the car of 36 year old Sayquan Hallums who was in the passenger seat. They were driving the wrong way on the Grand Central Parkway near the Cross Island Parkway exit in Queens when they crashed into another car. 26 year old Megan Ann Smith who was in the passenger seat was killed. Her boyfriend who was driving the car was critically injured. The police didn’t release his identity. Megan Ann Smith graduated in 2011 from St. John’s Preparatory School in Astoria, Queens. She was an an honor student and a member of the softball team. Her family declined to talk to the media.

Foggy windshield might have play a role in the deadly accident

According to the brother of Sayquan, the Honda car driven by Divante had an old defective windshield that would fog up easily. He said that when the heat was up inside the car the old windshield would fog up so badly that only Sayquan was able to drive the car.

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A NYPD cop in plainclothes was injured in a hit and run car accident in New York on Monday.

The accident occurred around 7:45 pm. Two undercover officers in a disguised Uber car stopped the driver of a Mercedes who ran a red light on East Houston Street.   The two officers were outside of their car talking to the driver of the Mercedes when a speeding black minivan driver lost control of his vehicle and rear-ended the fake Uber car belonging to the Police. One of the officers got pinned between the Mercedes and his car and the other one fell on the ground but wasn’t hurt. The driver of the Mercedes wasn’t hurt either. He was also out of his car but had time to to jump on the side to avoid  being stuck between the two vehicles. The driver of the minivan pulled away and took off. He was arrested 3 blocks away from the accident and taken into custody. The officer who was injured suffered a fractured leg and was taken to the hospital.

 

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geograph-4749794-by-John-BakerIn the aftermath of the tragic construction accident that killed Segundo Huerta and injured 5 other workers on a Bronx site in August last year (see previous blog), the NYC Department of Buildings recently released a notice to remind special inspectors, construction superintendents, design professionals, and permit holders about the requirements related to cold-formed steel light-frame construction in New York City.

Cold form steel framing is often used in low rise and mid-rise building projects. It refers to the structural frame that creates the form and support to the building.  While erecting such structures, clear procedures including properly bracing loading decks, or avoiding overloading floors with temporary construction loads must be followed to prevent collapse.

The NYC Building Code has specific regulations and requirements related to cold form steel framing. Last month, the DOB issued a service notice reminding construction professionals about it. Here are some of the main points:

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FDNY-twit22 people were injured in a fire that erupted in a high-rise in Manhattan.
The fire started around 2 AM on Tuesday on the 24th floor of a 41 story building located on E. 72nd St.

CLOSING THE DOOR COULD HAVE PREVENTED MANY INJURIES

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accident sceneA 10 year old boy and a 68 year old woman died in two separate truck accidents in New York City last week. Both accidents occurred on the same day.

10 year old boy killed by NYC Sanitation truck

The first accident occurred in Queens last Tuesday around 7:00 am.  10 year old Shreejan Panthee was on his way to school with his mother Mina. Both of them were crossing the 57th Avenue crosswalk near 97th Street in Corona, Queens, when a NYC Sanitation truck made a right turn onto 57th Street from a nearby driveway and struck them. The boy was run over by the rear wheels and the mother was knocked down on the ground.  Both the mother and the child were rushed to the hospital. Shreejan died a few hours later. Her mother Mina was critically injured but survived. A man who witnessed the accident told the media that he screamed at the truck driver: “Slow down, you are going to hit them!”. Mina, her husband Purushottam Panthee and their son Shreejan came from Nepal in 2010. The husband works as a chemist in Long Island and the mother works in a beauty salon in the Bronx. Shreejan was a smart boy who won spelling bee prizes and enjoyed swimming. The Queens Nepali Community was in shock. A vigil was organized at night at the location of the accident. The truck driver wasn’t immediately charged by the police however he was placed on “modified duty,” and stripped of driving responsibilities by the NYC Sanitation Department.