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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 Tagged with New York train accident

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train accidents 2016 statistics63% of all train accidents reported by the top 10 US  Commuter Railroads in 2016 occurred in New York City suburbs. The New Jersey Transit logged 21 of them (35%), the Long Island Rail Road 10 (17%) and Metro-North 7 (11%). These numbers were released at the beginning of the month by the  Federal Railroad Administration.

Most human caused train accidents logged by the 10 biggest US Commuter Railroads in 2016  also occurred on The 3 New York Commuter Railroads. Of a total of 33 train accidents caused by human error, 67% occurred in New York suburbs, with 40% of them occurring on the New Jersey Transit.

human caused train accidents 2016 graphThe New Jersey Transit (NJT) which reported 21 train accidents last year represented alone 35% of all the accidents.  The NJT, the third biggest transportation system in the US has been struggling with finance for years. Funds that were supposed to be invested in large development projects were used for day to day operations. As a result, commuters were charged higher fares for overcrowded trains that often suffer delays.

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LIRR_Train33 people suffered personal injury in a train crash in Long Island, NY on Saturday night. A Long Island Rail Road (LIRR) train carrying 600 passengers sideswiped a maintenance train and derailed just East of the New Hide Park station in Nassau County. The accident occurred around 9:00 pm. The Huntington Bound passenger train was coming from New York City. After the crash, scared passengers were trapped in the dark for up to an hour until they could be rescued. Among the people injured, 27 were passengers and 7 were workers. The New York Times reported 4 serious injuries.

In a press conference, NY Governor Cuomo told reporters that the accident could have been worse. He also said that the maintenance train violated clearance and intruded into the space of the commuter train. The passenger train sideswiped the maintenance train causing some cars to derail. Yellow paint from the maintenance train was found on the passenger train where the side swipe occurred.

Further investigation by the National Transportation Safety Board  will determine why the maintenance train violated clearance. Regulations related to operation of work equipment are different than regulations related to operation of passenger trains. According to Union sources the maintenance train was operated by a non union LIRR employee.

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MTA_Metro_North_6710_on_New_Jersey_Transit_train_1728After several train accidents occurred in the New York area over the last several years, Metro North has been taking measures to improve safety and remedy disciplinary issues among the staff. Yesterday the NY Post announced that several employees who were accused of cheating on safety tests have been suspended.  These suspensions are the result of an investigation that was launched approximately two years ago after allegations of widespread cheating on safety exams. Last year 13 Metro North employees were arrested and charged after investigators discovered that workers obtained questions and answers from 8 safety exams over 3 years.

Picture: courtesy of Wikipedia

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grade crossingA Metro North train crashed into a car in Bedford Hills NY last Wednesday.  The driver of the car was crossing the Green Lane railroad crossing when the car stalled. As the crossing gate started to go down she immediately realized what would happen next. She and her passenger quickly escaped from the car before it got hit by the train.  Thankfully nobody was injured in the crash. The service on the line was disrupted for thousands of passengers. New York Governor Andrew Cuomo who has been campaigning for the Federal Government and the MTA to improve grade crossings reiterate its call for better safety measures. Read more in the Lohud

Picture: an example of grade crossing courtesy of Wikipedia

 

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Two people died and dozen others were injured in an Amtrak train accident that happened between New York and Philadelphia  in the NorthEast Corridor yesterday morning. Train 89, also known as the Palmetto, struck a backhoe, killing the operator of the backhoe and an Amtrak supervisor.  The train had left New York for Savanah, GA around 6:00 am and was near Philadelphia when the accident happened.  None of the passengers died but more than 30 of them were transported to the hospital to be treated for non-life threatening injuries.

A team from the National Transportation Safety Board arrived yesterday at the site of the accident. They started to investigate the reasons why a maintenance crew was working on an active track. In a statement New York Senator Chuck Schumer indicated that it was highly possible that human error was the cause of the accident. He said that the Amtrak’s chairman, Mr Anthony Cosica told him that Amtrak employees have to follow a rigorous 20 step procedure to obtain clearance to place equipment on the track. Schumer added that a possible breakdown in communications between the train dispatchers and the maintenance crew may have been at the origin of the crash.

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howard Hersenhorn smallNew York Train Accident Lawyer Howard Hershenhorn  is representing one of the four victims who were killed when a sleeping engineer derailed a speeding train in the Bronx in 2013. He was recently quoted in a Lohud article related to this accident. Here is what he told the newspaper about the NTSB leniency toward William Rockefeller, the train operator:   “I think it’s an outrage that the NTSB gave him a pass because of the alleged undiagnosed sleep apnea, and his shift being changed. For God’s sakes, he’s a train operator.”

The article indicates that in the years before the fatal train accident, union members questioned the safety of  the Spuyten Duyvil curve and recommended installing a a system that automatically activates the brakes on a speeding train when an engineer is unresponsive but Metro-North never addressed their concern.

Read the complete article 

 

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Amtrak AccidentAn Amtrak train heading from New York to Washington DC derailed yesterday night in Philadelphia. 6 people died and many the 243 passengers of suffered personal injury and were taken to the hospital. Among the people injured 6 of them were in critical condition. The Amtrak accident happened yesterday night around 9:30 close to Frankford Avenue and Wheatsheaf Lane near a bend in the track. One of the nation’s deadliest railroad accidents happened in the same spot on Labor Day 1943. A train carrying military service members on leave derailed killing 79 of them and injuring 117. The cause of yesterday’s train accident is still unknown. Speed as well deteriorating infrastructure and aging equipment are among the potential factors to be investigated. Former Congressman  Patrick J. Murphy was on board when the accident happened and tweeted the pictures on the left.
Read more about this train accident in the New York Times

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A preliminary report related to the accident between a northbound Metro-North Railroad passenger train and  a 2011 Mercedes Benz ML350 sports utility vehicle (SUV) that killed six people in Valhalla, NY was published a few days ago by the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB). The accident happened on February 3rd 2015 . The report indicates that witnesses saw the SUV stopped on the railroad crossing before the gate went down. As the gate lowered it fell on the back of the car. The driver exited the car, looked at the back and went back in the car. She then proceeded to drive forward when she was struck by the train. The driver of the train operated the emergency brake 300 feet before the collision and hit the SUV at a speed of 49mph. As the train and the car continued to travel northbound, a dozen large pieces of the electrified third rail detached, piercing the SUV, tearing into the first passenger car in two locations and setting it on fire.  The preliminary report doesn’t provide any information on how and why the third rail pieces were able to detach.  Furthermore according to the NTSB the warning lights, alarms and gate arms were functioning however the accident  has prompted new attention to the safety of such crossings around the New York City region. Read more in the New York Times