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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OSHA logoThe announcement of safety actions against employers who recklessly put their employees (particularly construction workers) at risk of deadly or dangerous accidents is one of the tools used by OSHSA to prevent workers from being injured on the job. Last year more than one hundred of theses announcements were made by OSHA over the months of February and March. This year only 4 of them were released by OSHA since Trump took over.

The threat of bad publicity has proven to be a good tool to fight safety and health hazards on the job. Now that the Trump administration has been slacking on announcements of major safety actions some Senators are worrying that  OSHA is unable to do its job properly. In a letter to the Department of Labor, Senators Elizabeth Warren, Patty Murray, Al Franken, Robert Casey Jr., Christopher Murphy and Bernard Sanders are expressing their concerns about OSHA’s recent behaviour. The six Senators are asking the Department of Labor to conduct a review in regards to what seems to be a change of policy at OSHA in regards to the announcement of major safety penalties against employers. The Senators also asked the Department of Labor why OSHA recently postponed the planned implementation of a new safety regulation protecting workers exposed to silica and beryllium which have proven to cause lung cancer and other respiratory diseases.

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A pedestrian died in a truck accident in New York City early Sunday morning. The truck never stopped after he hit the pedestrian and neither did several vehicles who also hit him after he fell on the ground. The truck hit the pedestrian around 2:30 am on Sunday morning as he was walking on the Northbound lane of the Cross Bronx Expressway near Castle Hill Ave.  The pedestrian died at the scene of the accident. The police are still investigating the hit and run.

Truck accidents have been on the rise in New York City over the last few years. Up until the beginning of 2016, the number of accidents in the city was contained below 1,000 a month, usually between 500 and 700 at the most. Over the last year, the monthly number of truck accidents has doubled and sometimes tripled in New York City. According to the most recent statistics from the NYPD, there were 1,571 truck accidents recorded in March 2017, compared to 1,017 in March 2016, 733 in March 2015 and 573 in March 14. Several factors such as the recent economic boom and the increase in the number of consumer goods being ordered through the internet may have contributed to this alarming increase in truck accident in NYC.Truck accidents NYC March 2017

 

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A motorcyclist almost lost his foot in an accident in New York City. The motorcyclist was driving on Cropsey Ave in Gravesend, Brooklyn, when he was T-boned by a speeding van. The van driver was making a left turn from Cropsey Ave onto Canal Ave. According to a witness the driver thought he could make it but instead he slammed into the motorcyclist which was driving North. The accident occured on Sunday night around 8:45 pm. The van driver stayed at the scen of the accident and wasn’t charged despite his recklessness. The motorcyclist’s leg was completely mangled and he was rushed to the hopsital. He may lose his leg according to the NY Daily News. Motorcycles being struck by left turning vehicles is all to ccomon. Drivers must be eductated to be on the lookout for motorcycles. In N.Y.C. especially motorcyclists, if possible, should slow down when entering intersections and not depend on vehicles to yield the right of way.

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accident sceneA 46 old pedestrian died in NYC after a drugged driver struck him as he was crossing the street. 67 year old Jihne Niu was crossing the street at the intersection of 46th Ave and 149th Street in Flushing, Queens when the accident occurred. The driver, a 46 year old man who was drugged behind the wheel hit him with his car. He stayed at the scene of the accident and was arrested shortly after the police found out he was under the influence of drugs. Jihne Niu was rushed to the emergency room but couldn’t be saved. Read more in the NY Daily News.

Unfortunately, more people than usual were driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol during the celebration of Memorial Day. On Friday, Governor Cuomo announced that the New York State Police would be cracking down on this type of dangerous driving behaviour over the long week-end. Patrols were added all over the State of New York and sobriety check points were use to identify and arrest people driving under the influence. Unfortunately they couldn’t prevent all accidents. Last year during a similar operation over the Memorial Day Weekend York State Police arrested 225 drunk drivers and issued 12,000 tickets for various other violations  during the Hoilday. New York City also targeted drunk drivers. (read more here). In New York City, the NYPD, the DOT, the TLC and mayor de Blasio announced on Friday that the NYPD would also be cracking down on drunk drivers. Additionally the City of New York was offering  $10 off the ride of anyone taking a taxi on Friday night or Saturday night. Entitled “Know your limit” the campaign was encouraging New York City drivers to ride home in a taxi rather than drive back home under the influence. It seems strange though that the rebate was dd  not apply on Sunday night, one of the most busy nights of the long week-end (read more here).

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11 pedestrians and 1 bicyclist died in auto accidents in New York City last March. In March 2013, before the Zero Vision campaign was launched 11 pedestrians and 1 bicyclist were also killed in traffic accidents in the city.  After a promising start in 2014, the Vision Zero program seems to have lost some of its effectiveness.

After declining to 15,553 last February, the lowest level over 4 years, the number of motor vehicle accidents in New York City jumped back to 19,055 in March 2017.

Traffic accidents are continuing to increase steadily in the city as do the number of injuries related to these accidents. However despite a rising trend, the number of  auto accident injuries in March 2017 was slightly  lower than in March 2016 but higher than in March 2015, 2014 and 2013 (see graph below).

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New York Civil Right Attorney DonadioOur NY civil rights attorney Christopher J. Donadio recently lectured at the American Association for Justice Winter Convention in Austin, Texas. He was asked to speak at the convention to educate plaintiff’s lawyers from around the country on how to litigate cases where police officers have unlawfully used Tasers to injure innocent people.

As of 2016, over 97.5% of police departments in the United States employ officers that carry Tasers, devices that can incapacitate a person with electricity. Although Tasers can be useful in reducing the need for deadly force, unfortunately, many officers have used them inappropriately and severely harmed and/or killed innocent people. As a result, there has been a rise in lawsuits involving the excessive use of Tasers. Despite the seemingly straight forward nature of cases involving excessive force by the use of a Taser, there are complicated legal issues, including the Qualified Immunity Defense, that can prevent those injured from obtaining justice.

Unfortunately many innocent victims have been denied justice because their attorneys did not have the knowledge to negotiate the various complex legal issues. As a result of Mr. Donadio’s success in litigating Taser cases, he was asked to educate lawyers from all over the country as to what must be done to insure that their clients are not denied justice.

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New York Medical Malpractice Lawyer Jeffrey BloomBy: Jeffery B. Bloom; 

Tort reformer Michelle Mello is at it again, this time in the latest New England Journal of Medicine writing about the proposals from Sec. Tom Price and the US House. Instead of caps (about which she states: “caps have not been shown to improve the quality of care, a key goal of the tort system”), Mello is now criticizing the proposals in the US House bills while praising health courts which she calls administrative compensation systems (and others would call a proposal for eliminating the right of trial by jury).

As to safe harbor for doctors who adhere to evidence-based practice guidelines, she concedes that these safe harbors are NOT effective in reducing liability claims or costs.

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Jeffrey-Bloom3On Wednesday, Our partner Jeffrey Bloom lectured and did a demonstration of a deposition of a defendant doctor in a medical malpractice case at Metropolitan Hospital Emergency Department Grand Rounds which was attended by New York Medical College emergency medicine faculty, residents, medical students and other observers and research staff.
Two days before Jeff was also invited by the NY Kings Supreme Court bench & court attorneys to present and discuss issues frequently encountered in the trial of a medical malpractice action in a “lunch and learn” program.

A co-chair of the Medical Malpractice Committee of the New York State Trial Lawyers Association and a member of the organization’s board of directors, NYC Medical Malpractice Attorney Jeff Bloom has lectured extensively to law students and fellow lawyers on the preparation and trial of medical malpractice lawsuits. He has also lectured in New York State Bar Association-sponsored programs entitled “Medical and Legal Issues in Breast Cancer and Gynecological Cancers and Surgery” and “Woman’s Health Issues and Malpractice.”

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Fernando Vanegaz died in a NYC construction accident18 year old Fernando Vanegaz died in a construction accident in Brooklyn, NYC, in September 2015. Two of his colleagues were also seriously injured in the accident. The construction workers were hired by  Michael Weiss an unlicensed contractor who was running an illegal construction site. Michael Weiss asked the workers to dig in an area where the NYC DOB had ordered not to excavate. The workers didn’t have much experience in excavating. When they asked for back up, the contractor ignored them. He also refused to provide any underpinning, shoring or bracing  after workers noticed a crack in a wall. Several times the workers expressed their concern about the crack in the wall, fearing for their lives. The contractor continued to ignore them. Then the tragedy happened, the wall collapsed, killing the young Fernando Vanegaz and seriously injuring two other of his co-workers. Both of them had to go through multiple surgeries for injuries to their spine, skull and facial bones.  The reckless contractor is now facing up to 15 year in prison.

Read more in the New York Times