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 Truck Accidents

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memorial for NYC victim of bike accidentA 25 year old bicyclist was fatally struck by a hit and run truck driver in NYC.  Aurilla  Lawrence was fatally hit by a gas tanker truck near the intersection of Broadway and Rodney Street in Williamsburg last Thursday night around 11:30 pm. The driver fled the scene of the accident and so far is still at large. Lawrence was a beloved member of the bike messengers community who  nicknamed her  “Aurilla Gorilla”.

Last Sunday around 200 bike messengers and street safety advocates organized a memorial ride on the streets of New York to commemorate the victim. Bicyclists met at Lenox Avenue in Harlem and rode their bikes South on Fifth Avenue toward Union Square. The Union Square Park is an area where Lawrence used to hang with fellow bike messengers in between deliveries. As a tribute to her, the bike-a-thon made a stop at the park and  participants raised their bikes to her memory.

Then the 200 cyclists continued their way toward Brooklyn. They crossed the Williamsburg bridge to ultimately arrive at the location of the accident where a ghost bike and a makeshift memorial were installed.  The participants gathered around the memorial and paid tribute to their beloved co-worker.

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accident scene4  people were injured in an accident caused by a New York City Sanitation truck in Queens on Saturday night. The truck was driving West on the Belt Parkway near Merrick Boulevard when it overturned. During the crash, the compactor of the truck detached and landed on  the top of two other cars, destroying them. 4 people were injured including the driver of the truck who was badly bleeding. According to witnesses he was covered in blood. Another victim was seriously injured and 2 others only suffered minor injuries. All four of them were transported to the hospital to be treated. The police are still investigating the accident.

 

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private garbage truck involved in New york fatal bicycle accidentPrivate garbage trucks are among the most dangerous vehicles in New York City. 5 people died and 73 were seriously injured in commercial waste truck accidents in NYC over the last two years (2017 and 2018).

After years of complaints by street safety advocates, the NYC Department of Sanitation finally released a Draft Generic Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS) for its Commercial Waste Zones plan.  This plan is the blueprint to reform the dangerous waste hauling system in New York City.

The actual system allows for 90 different private garbage truck companies to service 100,000 businesses anywhere in the city. As a result, garbage truck drivers and trash collectors are assigned long routes that they have to service each night. Trash collection is one of the most dangerous jobs in America. In New York City a commercial trash worker can pick up to 30 tones of commercial waste during the course of a daily shift that can last for up to 16 hours.  It is also common knowledge that some of them s are exploited and make between $40 and $80 a night while their unionized colleagues can make up to $100,000 a year.

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Tractor Trailer Accident ManhattanIt’s a miracle that no one was injured in a tractor-trailer truck accident that occurred Monday morning in Manhattan around 8:00 am. The morning commute was light that day as most  New Yorkers were observing the Martin Luther King Day Holiday and were off from work. As the tractor-trailer was crossing the intersection of 23rd Street and 6th Ave, the trailer disconnected from the truck cab and slammed into the entrance of the subway station for the F and M lines. The trailer not only blocked the access to the subway entrance but all also to all the 6th Avenue lanes. The police temporarily closed 6th and 7th Avenues to the traffic while they were towing away the rogue trailer. The entrance of the subway that had just reopened in November after 4 months of renovations was slightly damaged and was temporarily closed again. Read more in the Gothamist

Dramatic increase of NYC truck accidents

Truck Accidents NYC October 2018Truck accidents have been increasing dramatically in New York City over the last few years. In 2013 the monthly number of truck accidents in New York City was around 500 to 600 monthly. In 2014 it increased slightly and the NYPD was recording between 600 and 700 truck accidents every month. In October 2015, the number of truck crashes reached 827. The number of truck crashes recorded that specific month was a record number for 2013, 2014 and 2015.

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Pickup truck accident locationA pedestrian was fatally struck by a pick up truck in New York City last Friday around 5 pm.  51 year old Jose Rubi was crossing Maspeth Avenue in Bushwick when he was hit by a 46 year old man driving a 2015 Ford pick up. The driver stayed at the scene of the accident and wasn’t charged. According to the police, the driver was attempting to make a left turn onto Vandervoort Ave when he struck Rubi. He told the police that he didn’t see the victim.

The police blamed the victim for crossing “mid block”. However it is unclear how the police could determine that the pedestrian was crossing mid-block while the driver testified that that the accident occurred as he was making a left turn at the intersection.

After the accident, the pedestrian was rushed to a nearby hospital but he didn’t survive his injuries.

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10 motorists and 7 pedestrians died in NYC traffic accidents in October. No fatalities were recorded among cyclists and vehicle passengers. Truck accidents reached a record high while bus accidents were unusually low for October. Motorcycle accidents started to decline compared to the summer months as the temperature drops and bikers keep their motorcycle in the garage.

The total number of monthly traffic deaths continues to decline despite a rise in the total number of monthly accidents in the city. Traffic injuries continue to rise as well.

Traffic Accidents Injuries and Deaths NYC October 2018
Over the last five years while Vision Zero initiatives focused mostly on making the streets safer for pedestrians and cyclists, distracted driving has led to a significant increase in accidents injuries and fatalities.

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Negligent garbage truck company out of businessAfter two people were killed by Sanitation Salvage garbage trucks and ProPublica released an in depth look at the company’s dirty business (see previous blog the trash hauler came under intense scrutiny.

At the end of last month, Sanitation Salvage sent a letter to the Business Integrity Commission to announce that it had surrendered its license and was going out of business.

After years of exploiting workers and endangering New Yorkers, the company run by the ruthless and heavily politically connected Squitieri Brothers is finally going down. Street safety advocates, labor unions and elected officials are all celebrating the news.

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private garbage truck involved in New york fatal bicycle accidentOver the last two years private garbage trucks killed 5 people and were involved in 73 serious crashes.  Reckless drivers behind the wheel of unsafe trucks traveling long routes for extended hours are a danger for New York City residents without counting the resulting toxic emissions in the air. A recent study by New York Comptroller Scott Stringer looks at the weaknesses of the actual system and advocates for a new waste system prioritizing safety and sustainability.

Race to the bottom dynamic

While residential waste in New York City is collected by the City’s Department of Sanitation, 3 million tons of commercial waste coming from more than 100,000 New York businesses from restaurants to hospitals are collected by private trash hauling companies.  There is little oversight of the private companies and each business owner in New York City is free to pick any of the 273 private companies available in the city  based on prices, reliability and the ability of the hauler to remove the type of trash generated by the business. As a result the same block can be visited by multiple garbage trucks during the same nights. A previous investigation by the Investigative Fund and ProPublica found that a stretch of five blocks in Manhattan was visited every night by 27 different garbage truck companies.  Because each private truck hauler can pick up for clients all over the five boroughs of New York City, their trucks drivers are assigned incredibly long routes to visit all businesses. Obviously the competition is fierce and companies are forced to propose low prices to their clients to stay in the business.  As a result the margins are low for most trash haulers. Truck fleets are old and many trucks are unsafe and truck drivers and helpers are poorly paid for performing long routes in limited time. Additionally while travelling every year 23 million miles in New York City which is 96 times the distance from the hearth to the moon private garbage trucks are a major contributor of airborne pollution.

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private garbage truck involved in New york fatal bicycle accident43 people have been killed in private garbage truck accidents in New York City since 2010. Barreling down the streets of New York City  with little to no respect for road regulations and for their surroundings, trash haulers gone rogue have become death threats on wheels for pedestrians and cyclists.  Running red lights, driving in reverse on one-way streets, speeding, drinking behind the wheel, New York commercial garbage truck drivers are involved in three times mores accidents than their peers in Los Angeles, Seattle or San Francisco according to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration.

Drivers are complaining that they are pushed to cut corners by their bosses who are assigning them routes that are too long to finish in the assigned time but New Yorkers have had enough of their dangerous behaviors.  Many have documented their erratic and dangerous behaviors on social media.

One week crack down

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Last Halloween, a terrorist driving a rental truck plowed into bicyclists and pedestrians on the Greenway bike path along the West Side Highway near Battery Park. In his act of terror, Sayfullo Saipov killed 8 people and injured 13 others after he entered the bike path  North of Chambers Street and drove 14 blocks down the path, striking bicyclists and pedestrians on his way.  The police were able to stop him after he slammed into a school bus at the Chambers Street intersection and tried to run away on foot.

According to the authorities, Saipov was inspired by the Islamic Sate group when he committed his act of terror. He is now behind bars and held without bail. He pleaded not guilty but the federal prosecutors announced on Friday that they are seeking the death penalty which is extremely rare in New York. The last time it occurred was in 1953 for Julius and Ethel Rosenberg.

Our firm represents most of the victims of the terror attack and while this decision by the  federal prosecutors will satisfy the families of the victims it will never make up for their losses.