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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A hard hat died at a NYC construction site after being crushed between a forklift and and a flatbed truck. 46 year old Jorge Castaneda from Queens was working at a Brooklyn construction site located at the intersection of Stewart Street and Broadway in Buschwick, Saturday afternoon around 3:00 pm. The construction worker walked between a flatbed truck and a forklift that was carrying scaffolding pipes. The forklift tipped over as it was passing next to Castaneda, crushing him against the truck.  Emergency responders lifted the forklift, liberated the poor man and rushed him to the hospital. Unfortunately the worker couldn’t be saved. He died from his injuries.  Read more in the NY Daily News

Forklifts are dangerous machines and unfortunately accidents involving workers on foot struck by such machines are all too common. Very often accidents occur because safety protocols established by the New York State Department of Labor were not followed. In the case of the death of Jorge Castaneda, the forklift may have tipped because it was not in compliance with Industrial Code §23-9.8(b) stating that forklifts may not be overloaded.

Picture of the site of the accident courtesy of Google Map

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NYC Fatal traffic accidents were at their lowest last January. During the first month of 2018, 11 people died in a traffic accident compared to respectively 18, 17, 13, 21 and 28 in January 2017, 2016, 2015, 2014 and 2013. The only months when the number of monthly fatal auto accidents in New York City was this low was in March 2016 and in May 2017. The monthly number of traffic deaths never went below 11 in the city.

While traffic fatalities have been on a declining trend since Vision Zero started, the opposite occurred with traffic injuries. They have been on a rising trend. However recent numbers seem to show some signs of stabilization.  4,351 people were injured in a car accident in New York City in January 2018. That’s a little bit less than the 4,383 people injured in January 2017 but more than respectively the 3,654, 3,449, 3,899 and 3,993 people injured in January 2016, 2015, 2014 and 2013.

Globally, traffic accidents continue to increase in New York City. Despite being lower than most previous months, the number of traffic accidents in New York City reached 17,762 in January 2018 compared to respectively 17,126, 17,798, 15,977, 16,597, 15,599 in January 2017, 2016, 2015, 2014 and 2013. January  is usually a month during which traffic accidents are lower than other months. The number of accidents is usually below the trend line in January.

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Two people died and 9 were injured in a fire accident in New York City. The fire started on the first floor of a building located on Hoffman Street near 87th Street in Belmont, Bronx around 1:30 am on Monday morning. After the fire broke out in one of the apartments on the first floor, tenants ran away without closing the door behind them to prevent flames from spreading. The fire quickly engulfed the rest of the building trapping residents on the second floor.  The scene was extremely chaotic as firefighters had to fight the flames to make their way upstairs to save the residents. 11 of them including a 7 year old girl were transported to the hospital, some with critical burn injuries. Two of them died shortly after.

Last December a similar fire accident occurred in the same neighborhood killing 13 people. The fire propagated in a similar manner in the building after a door was left opened by tenants as they were escaping their burning apartment. (Read previous post).

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t9zX2HV5k7o

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church fails to maintain buildingA man scavenging for construction material in a half demolished building was seriously injured after he fell through the floor. The accident occurred at a dilapidated Brooklyn building located at the intersection of Rutland Road and Brooklyn Ave in Prospect Lefferts Gardens.  The floor gave way under the weight of the 33 year old man and he got trapped. It took an hour for the paramedics and the firefighters to shore up the basement to take him out. The man was then rushed to the hospital where he was listed in serious condition.

Before being bought by the church next door, the building was a lounge. The church received a violation from the city Environmental Control Board for failure to maintain the building  after it partially collapsed. Concerned neighbors told the DOB at the end of January that the structure “was leaning”. The owner was supposed to raze the entire building but only half of it was demolished.

After the accident the DOB issued 3 violations to the church:

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bicycle accident locationA bicyclist died in a hit and run accident near Laguardia Airport in New York City. After reviewing surveillance videos, the Police now believe that the victim was hit by a shuttle bus.

36 year old Steven Morales was pedaling on Runway Drive near Laguardia Airport around 7:00 pm when he was mowed down by a vehicle that never stopped. The emergency crew gave him CPR and rushed him to a nearby hospital but he couldn’t be saved.

Runway drive which is an access road to Laguardia Airport was shut down for a few hours for investigation purposes. The police also searched surveillance camera and were able to find the shuttle and the driver who allegedly hit the cyclist. The driver denied hitting anyone. He wasn’t arrested. According to the police the bicyclist may have been hit by the rear wheel of the shuttle bus.

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crash locationA young man died in a car crash in Queens, NYC Saturday around 12:45 am.

The 21 year old man whose identity wasn’t released lost control of his vehicle while driving on Union Turnpike in Forest Hills near Woodhaven Boulevard. He hit a divider near the Stop & Shop supermarket and slammed into an edge of the supermarket’s loading dock (see picture from Google Map). His car burst on fire. By the time the emergency crew responded to the accident it was already too late. The victim was rushed to the hospital but he couldn’t be saved.

Read more in the NY Daily News

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Auto accident deaths NYC 2017In 2017, 102 pedestrians, 20 cyclists, 24 passengers and 63 drivers died in auto accidents in New York City compared to respectively 134, 18, 17 and 54 in 2016.

According to the traffic collision data released monthly by the NYPD, a total of 209 people died in traffic accidents in 2017 compared to a total of 223 in 2016 and 286 in 2013 before Vision Zero was launched. This is the lowest number of motor vehicle accident fatalities ever recorded since the city started to create statistics in 1910.

The decline in traffic fatalities is mostly due to the decline in pedestrian deaths that went down by 39% from 168 in 2013 before Vision Zero to 102 in 2017. During that same time fatal bicycle accidents almost doubled going from 11 to 20. Passenger deaths stayed almost stable from 23 to 24 and motorists fatalities declined by 25%.

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After 13 people died and 4 were critically injured in a fire accident in New York City, the FDNY  reminds New Yorkers that a simple move can save lives. If you are fleeing a room on fire, shut the door behind you! In apartment buildings this simple action can prevent the fire from spreading to hallways and stairs. In houses, closing a door can save the whole structure. Above all all it can prevent others from being injured or from dying.

Last month, a fire started in the kitchen of an apartment located at 2363 Prospect Ave in Belmont. A young mother was in the kitchen and ran away leaving the kitchen door opened behind her. This allowed the fire to spread upstairs and then throughout the entire building. 12 people died in the fire including four children. 4 other people were critically injured. Among them was a man who died from his injuries a few days later. The FDNY believes that if the kitchen door had been closed, the deaths and injuries may have been prevented.

If you find yourself in a situation were you have to flee from a fire just remember one thing: Close the Door!

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NYC construction workers safetyIn an effort to reduce the number of construction workers injured or killed in New York City, Mayor de Blasio introduced at the end of last year “Intro. 1447-C”, a bill requiring each construction worker to attend 40 hours minimum of safety training to be able to work at a New York construction site (see previous blog).

Therefore by March 1 2018, hard hats working on a NYC construction site will have to show that they attended at least 10 hours of safety training within the previous five years if they want to continue working. Workers can do so by attending an OSHA 10 class.  Workers can Google” OSHA 10 training NYC” to find many options available during the week as well as during the week-end.  During an OSHA 10 hours training course, workers will learn basic work place safety and how to reduce the risk of accidents. They will participate in interactive exercises and study real life cases. Subjects will include fall protection, personal protective equipment, electrocution and more.

By December 1st 2018, construction workers are required to complete OSHA 10 and 20 additional training hours specified by DOB or OSHA 30. Workers also have the option to attend a DOB-approved 100-hour training program.

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15 people died and 5,450 were injured in 19,983 auto accidents in New York City in October. October is usually a bad month for car accidents in the city. As shown in the graphs below the total number of accidents was above the trend line in October.  The monthly number of traffic injuries was also the second highest number ever recorded in the city. The highest number of crash injuries was 5,557 last May. While the total number of crashes and related injuries have been steadily growing over the years, the number of people dying in crashes declined since 2013 when Vision Zero was launched. The number of people dying in car accidents went from 35 in October 2013 to 25 in October 2014, 26 in October 2015, 14 in October 2016 and 15 this last October. In 4 years fatal crashes declined by more than 50%. Additionally for the last two years the number of traffic deaths was below the trend line for the month of October while in the past it was always above it during this specific month.

car accidents injuries and deaths NYC October 2017
Despite all the Vision Zero efforts, crash injuries are on a rising trend.  Since last May their monthly number stayed above 5,000. Motorist injuries are the main cause of this rising trend. While in October 2013 motorist injuries accounted for less than a third of the total number of injuries, four years later they account for almost half of them. On the other hand, passenger injuries have been declining over the last four years. Distracted driving is suspected to be a factor. When drivers are alone in their cars they maybe more tempted to use their electronic equipment than when they travel with passengers.

crash injuries New York City October 2017
The number of monthly deadly crashes in New York City stayed below 25 for more than a year. It is the first time that the number of monthly fatal accidents stayed below 25 for that long. The highest number was 24 in June followed by 22 in September. The last time this number was above 25 was in June, 2016 when 29 people died in car accidents in the city. The city speed reduction from 30 mph to 25 mph may have been a factor in the recent decrease in fatal crashes.