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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 wrongful death NYC

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Vision Zero recently released a cycling trend in New York City. However the presentation is a little bit disappointing as it doesn’t contain any bicycle accidents statistics or safety analysis that compare the surge in the number of bicycle rides in the city with the number of bicycle accident injuries and deaths. So we used the bicycle accident injuries and deaths statistics from the NYPD and we compared them with the DOT estimated numbers of rides.

While the city has been making some improvements over the years and  created new bike lanes, numbers clearly show that this is not enough as a record high percentage of riders dying in bicycle accidents were recorded in 2019 and 2020. While the de Blasio administration has been pushing New Yorkers to use bicycles and other clean modes of transportation, recent data show that more has to be done to protect New York cyclists.

The ratio of  bicycle accident fatalities compared to the number of rides which was pretty high in 2014 when Vision Zero started decreased significantly in 2015, remained a little higher in 2016 and 2017 and droped in 2018. Unfortunately it didn’t last. In 2019, the percentage of cyclists deaths was back at the 2014 levels and it reached a record high in 202o.

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During the third quarter of 2021, a total of 71 people died in crashes in New York City including 24 pedestrians, 5 cyclists, 9 passengers and 33 motorists. Since the Covid19 crisis started, auto accident fatalities in New York City have peaked and  street safety activists are pointing fingers at the de Blasio administration for failing to keep the streets safe.

A total of 14,335 people were injured in traffic accidents in New York City during Q3 2021 compared to respectively 13,437, 16,083, 16,300, 15,860, 16,048, 13,998, 13,472, 14,900 during Q3 2020, 2019, 2018, 2017, 2016, 2015, 2014, 2013. Before 2015, the passengers category  was the one with the most injuries with usually between 5,000 and 6,000 passenger injuries during Q3. In 2015 after the introduction of the Vision Zero program, passenger injuries significantly declined to 4,121 while motorist injuries jumped from 4,502 to 6,043. The increase in motorist injuries is linked to an increase in accidents related to distracted driving and more and more people using their cellphone while driving. After the first year of Vision Zero, passenger injuries during Q3 went back above 5,000 and then, back below 5,000 after the Covid19 crisis hit in 2020. Motorist injuries, mostly linked to distracted driving continued to rise reaching a record high in 2019 with 7,437 motorists injured during Q3.

New York Auto Accident injuries by category during Q3
6,349  motorists were injured in car accidents in New York City during the third quarter of 2021 compared to 5,931 for the same period of 2020 and 7,437 for the same period of 2019. Motor vehicle accident injuries reached a peak during Q3 2019 in New York City and then dropped to levels never seen since 2014 when the Covid19 crisis hit.  They were up during this year’s Q3 but not as high as what they used to be during Q3 2019.

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location of the fatal crashTwo childhood friends were driving back home from an after-hours party when the one driving ran a red light and crashed into another car. The passenger was ejected and died. The accident occurred around 6:30 am last Saturday morning. According to the police, 26 year old Jovanni Padilla was speeding down Saratoga Ave when he ran a red light at the intersection of Sutter Ave and crashed into a KIA SUV. His best friend, 23 year old Kainen Martin was asleep in the passenger seat. Ther impact was so intense that he was ejected from the car.  The police found him lying in the street and he was rushed to the hospital where he later on died from his injuries. The driver, Jovanni Padilla did not have a license and was drunk at the time of the accident. He was also trying to escape on foot when the police arrived and caught him. Padilla was first charged with DWI and driving without a license  and later on with mansluaghter, assault and vehicular manslaughter. The driver of the KIA SUV was hospitalized with minor injuries.

Best friends since childhood

Jovanni and Kainen had been best friends since they were children. Padilla felt so guilty after he understood that his friend had died that he asked the cop  “Just shoot me in the head”. He later on attended the candle light vigil held at the house of Kainen’s mother  in Brooklyn. Both Jovanni and Kainen’s family knew each other and both were distraught by the fatal accident.

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Man-working-on-tubular-scaffold-scaledAfter a 21 year old worker fell to his death on a Brooklyn construction site, Everest Scaffolding, a NYC roofing company located in the Bronx, received a $300,370 OSHA  fine. This fine was the second largest OSHA fine of Q2 2021 . The accident related to the fine occurred on November 13, 2020. The young worker was installing a supported tubular welded frame scaffold during the construction of a seven-story building in Brooklyn when he fell almost 50 feet and died.

OSHA investigators found that:

  • the roofing company did not evaluate the feasibility of using fall protection
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A SUV driver struck a pedestrian in Brooklyn, NYC, and while he remained at the scene of the accident, the pedestrian who was hit, vanished from the accident scene. When EMS arrived, they looked for him but could not find him. The accident occurred in Bath Beach. The SUV driver was making a right turn from Bath Avenue onto Bay Parkway when he struck the pedestrian. He remained at the scene of the accident and was not charged. The next day, the police were called for someone injured in a house and found the 52 year old pedestrian dead in his apartment. They found out that the pedestrian stumbled home and suffered a massive head injury that killed him.  Read more in the NY Daily News

While still on a declining trendline, over the past 8 years, NYC pedestrian fatalities have been on the rise this year compared to the previous years. 66 pedestrians died between January 1st and July 31st this year compared to 57 during the same period of last year and 57 during the same period of 2018.

Spike of pedestrian fatalities in New York City

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Bronx intersection where the MTA bus accident occurredA pedestrian crossing the street in the Bronx was fatally struck by a MTA bus last night around 8:30 pm. The bus driver was making a left turn at the intersection of Johnson Avenue and Kappock Street in New York City, when he struck a 68 year old woman whose identity has not been revealed by the police.

The victim was run over by the rear wheels of the bus and died at the scene of the accident.

The tragedy occurred in a residential area of Spuyten Duyvil where bus drivers should expect pedestrians and drive cautiously. According to officials, the driver has been withheld from further service and will have to take a fitness for duty test. (Read more in the NY Daily News

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8 pedestrians, 3 cyclists, 4 motor vehicle passengers, and 13 motor vehicle drivers died in auto accidents in New York City during the month of July. Usually, monthly pedestrian deaths account for the largest share of the road fatalities in New York City but since the pandemic started, monthly motorist deaths often account for the biggest part of the motor vehicle accident fatalities in the city. As a result of this increase in motorist fatalities, since the end of the lockdown, the number of auto deaths was above 20 for 9 months out of 14. As a comparison, in 2019, it was above 20 only twice during the entire year and in 2018, only once during the entire year. Speed and recklessness have been a factor in many of these deaths as well as an increased amount of New Yorkers travelling by car instead of public transportation because of Covid19 fears.

Car accident deaths by road users in New York July 21
NYC traffic accident deaths in the month of July reached their highest since July 2014 with 28 fatalities. Since June last year, road fatalities have been out of control in New York City. For the 4th consecutive month, auto accident fatalities remained above 20 and significantly above the trendline. These high numbers of fatalities had not been seen since 2013 before Vision Zero started.

Auto accident deaths NYC July 2021

Traffic accident injuries lower than before the pandemic

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Brooklyn location of the deadly pedestrian accidentA 6 year old pedestrian was killed by a reckless driver in New York City yesterday afternoon.

Little Hiromi Tami was crossing the street with her mother near the  intersection of 12th Avenue and 67th Street in Dyker Heights, Brooklyn when 30 old year old Qiuhua Zhu sped into oncoming traffic, blew a red light and slammed into the little girl. He then  sped away, circled the block, came back and was arrested by the police. All 3 of them were living in the neighborhood where the accident took place.

Mother devastated by the accident

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A total of 5 construction workers lost their life on the job in New York City between April 1st and June 31st . Since 2015, this is only the second time that construction fatalities recorded by the NYC Department of Buildings during the second quarter reached such a high number. The other time was in 2019. 2 fatalities occurred in Brooklyn, one in Manhattan, one in the Bronx and one in Queens. 3 of the fatalities were falls and two were related to mechanical construction equipment. The last two weeks of May were particularly deadly. On May 19th, at around 8:20 am, two workers were cleaning debris on the 5th floor of a construction site located at 20 Bruckner Boulevard in the Bronx. They loaded a new elevator car with the debris, got in the car with the debris and proceeded to head downstairs. The elevator had a mechanical failure and the car fell from the fifth floor. One of the workers was pronounced dead at the scene of the accident and the second was injured and transported to the hospital. Three days later in Queens, a deadly accident occurred when two workers were instructed to use an extension ladder from the sixth floor chimney shaft to the roof. One of the workers said he heard a “crush sound” as he was at the second or third step of the ladder and turned around, he didn’t see anything so he kept going and took the ladder by himself to the roof. His colleague was found dead almost two hours later on the second floor. He had fell in an elevator shaft. 5 days later on May 27th, a hard hat who was working on a roof during a demolition job, fell to his death at a construction site located at 1045 Flatbush Avenue in Brooklyn. Two other workers died earlier in April, one of them came in contact with a live wire and was fatally electrocuted on a Manhattan construction site located at 555 West 22nd Street and the other one fell to his death from a dangerous scaffolding installation at a construction site located at East 53rd Street in Brooklyn.  These recent fatalities were so alarming that the DOB organized a massive sweep of all major construction sites in the city and temporarily closed hundreds of them for not respecting safety standards. (see previous blog).

Hard hat fatalities NYC Q2 2021
Falls remain the number one cause of fatal construction accidents in New York City. Again during Q2, 3 of the 5 fatalities were fall. Most of the time fall fatalities are the result of negligence by the contractor and could have been prevented. Fatalities often occur on sites that have a history of violations and complaints, for example, the construction site located at 1200 East 53rd Street in Brooklyn has so far recorded a total of 30 complaints, 50 DOB Violations including 8 open and 40 OATH/ECB violations including an open one for failing to notify the DOB after the death of the worker. A stop work order is still active at this location. The site located at 45-18 Court Square in Queens previously logged in 53 complaints, 54 DOB violations including 3 open and 39 OATH/ECB violations including 11 open. Before the deadly accident occurred at this site, the contractor was fined for failing to safeguard all persons and property affected by construction operations. This violation is still open. The same goes for the site located at 1045 Flatbush Avenue in Brooklyn which as of Today has a stop work order with 20 OATH/ECB violations open, most of them of the highest severity. Hard hats working on construction sites that are unsafe have a much higher risk to die in a construction accident.

Construction worker fatalities by type of accidents Q2 NYC
The number of construction workers injured on the job was a little lower than usual during the second quarter. A total of 144 workers suffered injury in construction accidents in New York City during the 3-month period of April, May, June 2021 compared to respectively, 68, 150, 233, 170, 171 and 134 during the same period of 2020, 2019, 2018, 2017, 2016 and 2015.  Last year the numbers were lower because of the Covid19 lockdown and we can not compare them to any other year. Manhattan had the most injuries, followed by Brooklyn, Queens, the Bronx and Staten Island.

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truck in NYCBig trucks are dangerous in dense cities like New York. While truck accidents only account for a small percentage of all crashes in New Yok City, they are often deadly or result in severe injuries to pedestrians or cyclists.

The city recently published a plan to move freight in a safer and more sustainable way around the city

E-commerce drastically changed the way New Yorkers are getting their goods delivered and led to a significant increase of trucks in the city while at the same time the city is trying to be more sustainable and encourage people biking, walking or using public transportation.