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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Car accidents are the leading cause of death among children below 13 years old in New York City.  On average two third’s of the children who die in car accidents in New York are pedestrians. While most often fatal accidents are the result of reckless driving, it is also important to educate children about the dangers of the streets.

As part of the Vision Zero program, employees from the New York City Department of Transportation are now visiting schools to educate NYC children about potential dangers encountered when crossing the street. The highlight of this school campaign is a Hip Hop video which the DOT hopes may catch the attention of the children.

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accident sceneA 15 year old boy was critically injured in a motorcycle accident in New York City. The accident occurred in Flatbush, Brooklyn, yesterday around 4:30 pm. The 15 year old boy was crossing East 43rd Street near Church Ave with a group of friends when he was hit by a motorcycle. According to witnesses the motorcyclist struck the boy at a high speed. The teenager was transported to the hospital in critical condition. The biker suffered minor injuries and was also transported to the hospital.

Read more in the New York Post

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New York Construction SiteNew York has the sixth lowest construction worker injury rate in the U.S. according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Despite being among the safest cities for hard hats, working on a New York City construction site remains one of the riskiest occupations in the City.

According to “The price of Life, 2015 report on construction fatalities in NYC” released by The New York Committee for Occupational Safety and Health (NYCOSH), construction work accounts only for 4%  of employment but for 20% of occupational fatalities in New York State. As in the rest of the nation, falls to a lower level are the number one cause of death on New York construction sites. Almost half of the fatalities on NYC construction sites are related to falls from Heights.

Roofing and siding workers doing construction work at an elevation are the most at risk of a fatal fall.  These workers are often working in an unsafe environment. 80% of New York roofing and siding contractors who received a visit from an OSHA inspector between 2010 and 2012 received violations.

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accident sceneA 48 year old man died in a motorcycle accident in New York City last Sunday. Edison Torres was riding his motorcycle East on the Bruckner Expressway in the Bronx, NYC. As he was near Pugsley Ave in Unionport, he collided with a car driving in the same direction. He then lost control of his bike and hit the ground. He was rushed to the hospital but he couldn’t be saved.  Read more in the NY Daily News

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Bicyclist and Pedestrian safety rideSo far this year 16 people were killed in a bicycle accident in New York City. This is the highest number of bikers killed over a period of 8 months in the city.  As bicycling is becoming more and more popular in New York, it is important that bikers feel safe when they ride. Pedestrians also are at increased risk of fatal accidents. 74 people died while walking in the streets of New York. Another worrisome problem is the growing number of hit and run fatal accidents. 28 people were killed by hit and run drivers since the beginning of the year. This is higher than the total number of people killed by hit and run drivers over the complete year of 2015.

This Thursday Please join Transportation Alternatives, Families For Safe Streets, Right of Way and Kidical Mass BK  to ride together to demand streets safe for biking and walking. The meeting point is at Fountain of Pamona at East 59th Street and 5th Avenue in Manhattan at 6:00 pm. The ride will start at 6:30 pm.

Riders want to send a message to Mayor de Blasio that “This is enough” ! Too many bicyclists and pedestrians have been killed or injured in traffic accidents in New York City this year and it has to stop.  Mayor de Blasio is not doing enough to make New York City streets safe. After improving during de blasio’s first two years as mayor, the number of bicycle and pedestrian accidents are increasing again. This Thursday riders will ask the mayor to take immediate action to fast track projects related to the construction of protected bike lanes and safeguarded pedestrian crossings in areas that have been designated priority areas by Vision Zero.

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teen driverDistracted driving is the number one cause of car accidents in the U.S.  Among age groups, statistics indicate that  teen drivers are the most at risk of being involved in a fatal crash related to distracted driving. Distracted driving is not only about cell phone use. Distracted driving can be any type of activity that diverts the attention of the driver from the road. Passengers behavior may distract the driver, especially when teens are sharing a car. This is the reason why programs such as the Graduated Driver Licensing (GDL) recommend to limit the number of passengers in the car for new teen drivers.

To better understand how a teen driver perceives the risks of driving with other passengers, Catherine C. Mc Donald, PHD, RN at the Center for Injury Research and Prevention, The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, Philadelphia, PA, USA and Marilyn S. Sommers, PhD, RN, FAAN, Lillian S. Brunner Professor of Medical–Surgical Nursing, University of Pennsylvania, School of Nursing, Philadelphia, PA conducted focus groups and interviews with teen drivers. Their findings were recently published in the Journal of Pediatric Nursing. The study entitled “Good Passengers and Not Good Passengers:” Adolescent Drivers’ Perceptions About Inattention and Peer Passengers, found that depending on situations, other passengers behavior may reduce accident risks.  Accidents risks are lowered when another passenger helps the teen driver with technology such as GPS, cell phone or music. However when music is played too loud or other passengers distract the driver with Snapchat or other cell phone apps the risk of accidents increases.

When teaching and discussing road safety with their teens or when handing their car keys to them, parents should keep this study in mind. While passengers behaving badly may increase the risk of accidents related to distracted driving, the help of a good passenger may prevent teens getting distracted while driving.

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Jay Street before after protected bike laneBetween 2010 and 2014, one bicyclist died and 270 people were injured on Jay Street in Brooklyn NYC. The Jay Street bike lane was voted the most dangerous bike lane in Brooklyn by the readers  of the Brooklyn Paper in 2012. Last month the New York City Department of Transportation finally installed a protective bike lane on Jay Street. The bike lane which is protected by parked cars, increases bicyclists safety. However since its installation some motorists are still driving or parking on the protective lanes and the police are not doing much to prevent them from doing so. Barriers or bollards would be the best way to keep all car traffic out of the lane. According to commuters using the lane on daily basis, the protective bike lane makes it easier to commute but it is still not a place to safely bike with a family. Read more in the Brooklyn Paper . Also read additional proposals to improve  cyclists safety on Jay Street here and provide your personal input here.

Illustration: NYC DOT implemented proposal for Jay Street Protected Bike Lane

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accident sceneAn 80 year old man suffered critical injuries in a car accident in the Bronx, NYC. The man was driving on the Cross Bronx Expressway last Thursday when he ran out of gas. He parked his SUV on the shoulder but didn’t properly put the vehicle in park position. As he got out of the car and walked behind it, the car started to roll backward. The man was run over by his own car. He was rushed to the hospital in critical condition.

Read more in the NY Daily News 

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accident sceneAn elderly pedestrian was fatally struck by a car in New York City last week. 89 year old Wai Lee was crossing Quentin Road near Coney Island Ave in Brooklyn, NYC when she was struck by a car. The driver, an 81 year old man was trying to park when he hit the victim. The NY Daily News reported that the man was trying to park when he put the car in drive by mistake. He then accelerated and hit the victim. The woman was transported to the hospital in critical condition. She later died there from her injuries.

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location of the accidentA 23 woman died in a car accident in New York City on Sunday morning. 6 other people were also injured in the accident.  The deceased victim, Desray Leroy and all the other people injured in the accident were riding in the same car.  They were celebrating the 21st birthday of Stephany Leroy, the sister of the victim according to ABC7 NY. They were coming back from a club and the 7 of them were packed in a 2004 Audi 6 sedan. The car’s maximum capacity is 5 people. Desray Leroy was sitting on the lap of one of the passengers. They were driving North on 120th Street in South Ozone Park, Queens. As they arrived at the intersection of Linden Boulevard, the driver allegedly ignored the stop sign and struck a Honda Civic. The Audi then veered into a wall and then flipped over. The driver of the Civic, a 53 year old woman identified as Ray Mouton, was arrested for aggravated unlicensed operation of a vehicle according to the NY Daily News. The 6 other passengers of the Audi were taken to the hospital with non life threatening injuries. The police are are still investigating the exact cause of the crash.

Picture: location of the accident, courtesy of Google Map