3 people died and 16 suffered injury in a bus accident that occurred in Queens, NYC, last week. Around 6:00 am last Monday, 49-year-old Raymond Mong was driving an empty charter bus owned by the Dahlia tour company when he ran a red light and crashed into a MTA bus in Flushing. The crash occurred at the intersection of Northern Boulevard and Main Street. Footage from a security camera shows the Dahlia bus recklessly speeding through the intersection and crashing into the MTA bus which was making a right turn from Main street onto Northern Boulevard.
The bus driver, Raymond Mong, died in the accident as well as a pedestrian (68 year old Henry Wdowiak) and a MTA bus rider (55 year old Gregory Liljefors). Among the 16 other people who were injured in the accident, five of them were still hospitalized with 3 of them in critical condition. According to the most recent results of the investigation, Mong drove through the intersection at a speed of 58 mph. The maximum speed limit in the city is 25 mph.
Two people died and several others were injured in a NYC car accident caused by a drunk driver who was speeding. 34-year-old Andrew Shakespeare was driving back from a wedding on Sunday morning. He had 4 other passengers in his car. He was allegedly drunk and was speeding on the Grand Central Parkway in Queens, NYC. As he approached the 188th street exit, Shakespeare changed lanes and side-wiped a Nissan Sentra driven by a 59-year-old woman. He then lost control of his BMW X5 SUV and careened into a Nissan Rogue driven by a 52-year-old man. Both cars crashed into the center guard rail. A 38-year-old woman driving a Mercedes was then struck by the BMW despite trying to swerve to avoid hitting the two cars. The impact sent her car into trees on the side of the road and back rolling over on the road.
The BMW front passenger, 34-year-old Layon Campbell was transported to the hospital with critical head and body injury. He was pronounced dead upon his arrival. 16-year-old Akeam Grant who was sitting on the rear right seat of the BMW died at the scene of the accident. The two other passengers, a 21-year-old and a 16-year-old survived. One of them fractured his pelvis and his right arm. The other lacerated his right arm. They were both transported to a hospital to be treated.
Among the people in the 3 other cars involved in the crash, both drivers of the Nissans were taken to the hospital for neck and back injuries but were listed in stable condition. The two passengers of the Nissan Rogue were also rushed to the hospital. The front passenger, a 50-year-old man injured his right leg. The rear passenger, a 63-year-old man fractured his rib and his neck. He also suffered from neck and back pain. Both passengers are in stable condition. The Mercedes-Benz driver was also transported to the hospital to be treated for pain in her right shoulder.
A 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).
5 young people died in a house fire in New York City Sunday afternoon. 2 year old Chayce Lipford, 10 year old Rashawn Matthews, 16 year old Jada Foxworth, 17 year old Melody Edwards and 20 year old Destiny Dones all died in a fire that broke out in a house located on 208th Street in Queens village, Sunday afternoon around 2:30 pm. 911 received a call at 2:36 from someone who was driving in front of the house and saw flames coming out of the 1st floor window. The firefighters only took 4 minutes to arrive but by that time the house was already completely consumed by fire. The only survivor is 46 year old Maurice Matthews, father of Rashawn Matthews. He jumped from a second floor window. According to CBS New York, the victims may have been trapped in the attic of the house. The house had no working smoke detectors. The investigation about the exact cause of the accident is still ongoing.
Following the tragic accident, the FDNY fire Safety Education Unit founded by the FDNY Foundation and the New York Red cross set up a stand in Queens Village to teach community residents about the importance of having smoke detectors in their house. They also installed smoke detectors in houses that didn’t have any.
A 22 year old woman died from her injury after a drunk driver crashed into her car in NYC. The drunk driver, 32 year old Neville Smith is a NYPD detective. He was off duty when he crashed into Vanessa Raghubar’s car. The accident occurred around 4:00 am Sunday morning on the Van Wick Expressway. Vanessa was returning from her sister’s birthday party when the drunk detective crashed his Mercedes into her Honda. The impact was so strong that Vanessa’s car was propelled against a light pole and a tree. She and her two passengers, her sister and her sister’s boyfriend suffered critical injuries. All 3 were transported to the hospital where Vanessa died the following day.
Smith was charged with vehicular assault, assault, driving while intoxicated and refusal to take a Breathalyzer test. More charges are expected.
Vanessa who studied psychology was supposed to graduate in June. Her family wants justice.
A FDNY firefighter fell to his death Thursday afternoon as he was fighting a fire in a NYC apartment. 42 year old, William Tolley was responding to a two-alarm apartment fire on the third floor of a building located on Putnam Ave in Ridgewood, Queens. The fatal accident happened when the fire was almost extinguished. Tolley had just finished executing a routine operation on the rooftop. He was about to get in the bucket at the end of a five story ladder when something went wrong and he fell to his death.
It is not clear so far if Tolley took a misstep or if a mechanical issue with the ladder or the bucket caused the accident. The truck was kept on the street with the ladder extended for investigation purposes.
The FDNY said the fire was a minor blaze with very limited risk of injury or death and the accident was “bizarre”.
A construction worker was pinned between a forklift and a van and died from his injuries. The forklift accident occurred in front of a FDNY warehouse in Queens on Saturday afternoon. The 28 year old man drove the forklift in front of the warehouse in order to upload merchandise from a van. He put the forklift in neutral and stepped out. As he was walking toward the van, the forklift started to roll behind him, crushing him against the van. He was rushed to the emergency room but he died at the hospital. According to the NY Daily News, the equipment belonged to the FDNY.
Forklift accidents are unfortunately too common. 11% of the forklifts operating in the US are involved in accidents every year. Among these accidents 35,000 workers will die or suffer severe injuries and 65,000 will suffer minor injuries. Here are a few tips to prevent such accidents from happening.
A 17 year old driver accidentally killed his grandmother in a car accident in New York City on Sunday. The young man who lives in Queens with his parents and grandparents was about to take the family to church when the accident occurred. As he backed up in the narrow driveway of their home, Jadesh struck his grandmother who had stepped into the path of the car. 75 year old Chandravti Lakhan was transported to the hospital in critical condition. She couldn’t be saved. According to the neighbors, the whole family is very united. The parents and the grandparents live together with 5 children in a house located on 267th St. near 83rd Ave in Queens, NYC. It wasn’t uncommon for Jadesh to take his grandparents out. The whole family was visibly distraught by the tragedy.
Read more in the NY Daily News
An infant died in a car accident last week in Queens. 8 month old Navraj Raju was in a stroller pushed by his mother last Thursday morning when he was struck by a van. The mother and the infant were on the sidewalk when the driver of the van backed out of a driveway and hit the stroller. The van driver was unlicensed. The car accident occurred at 92-20 Astoria Boulevard. The picture above shows the location of the accident. It is an area particularly difficult to navigate for pedestrians, especially families. Cars parked in front of the building between the deli and the gas station have to back out onto the sidewalk when leaving their parking space. They have reduced visibility when backing out. Additionally vehicular traffic is constantly crossing the sidewalk to access the gas station.
Astoria Boulevard was identified in 2015 as a Vision Zero priority. The segment of Astoria Boulevard between 80th street and 110th street was identified as a pedestrian crash corridor. It is among the top 10% most dangerous corridors for pedestrians in this particular neighborhood. It is supposed to be re-engineered in the future to make it safer for pedestrians. The proposal from the Department of Transportation to make some specifically dangerous segments of Astoria Boulevard safer can be downloaded here. However despite fixes being identified for Astoria Boulevard in 2015, not enough is being done by the de Blasio administration to quickly implement these changes. Transportation Alternatives organized a stroller protest to ask the Mayor to fulfill his promise to reduce traffic deaths.
Read more about the accident on Streetblog