Articles Posted in New York

A State Island justice recently threw out the million-dollar lawsuit of a young judo student, whose ankle was broken three years ago while he was trying to block an adult student’s takedown maneuver at a martial arts academy.

A State Supreme Court Justice ruled that participants, even as young as 11, the age the teen was when he was injured, assume the risk of being hurt when they engage in contact sports.

The teen and his father challenged the school was negligent by having him practice with an adult student, who was older and weighed more than the then 11-year-old.

According to court documents, the now 14-year-old had trained in the martial arts since he was 5 years old.

The incident occurred on Aug. 19, 2010.

The teen, then 11, was training with a second-degree black belt in judo, according court papers.

At that point, an older student was paired up with the boy to train with him.

judo chop.jpgThe older student attempted a foot sweep to the side of the younger boys’ foot. When the boy tried to block it he suffered an ankle fracture from the contact.

The foot sweep is a regular judo technique.

The teen and his father alleged the school had mismatched him with the adult student and had not properly supervised the training session.

The teen’s father, who filed the lawsuit on his son’s behalf, sought at least $1.25 million in damages.

Court records show that the academy submitted an affidavit from a judo expert who said pairing an adult student with a minor student is a common practice during judo drills. The expert went on to say that there is no standard practice requiring participants in judo drills to be paired based on height, weight, age or experience.

The judge ruled that the academy was not negligent in pairing the adult and minor together to train because the injury occurred during the normal course of training.

The judge in this case dismissed the teen’s case because even though the boy was 11 at the time he suffered the injury, he still assumed the risk of his injury, therefore no act of negligence occurred. Under the legal theory of negligence, an injured party can hold someone liable for their suffering if certain elements exist, including a duty to the injured party, if that duty is breached and if damages occur as a result of the breach of duty. In this particular case, the teen’s father claimed the academy had a duty to his son because he was a student, and they breached that duty when they allowed him to be paired with an older, bigger student. The lawsuit alleged that the academy was responsible for causing the boy’s injury because they paired the smaller boy with the physically larger one, resulting in his broken ankle.

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A 30-year-old man was killed after being electrocuted Monday morning while walking on the tracks near the Broadway G train stop. Another man, 26, was shocked and sustained serious injuries.

The deceased and his friend were walking north on the southbound side of the subway, near Union Avenue, when the man apparently stopped to urinate and accidentally came into contact with the third rail, according to the FDNY and NYPD.

The man’s friend tried to help him, but sustained an electric shock as well.

According to officials, both were taken to Woodhull Hospital, where the 30-year-old died of cardiac arrest.

A spokeswoman for the FDNY said the second man was listed in serious but stable condition.

488706_nymetro_.jpgIt is unknown at this time as to whether the Metropolitan Transportation Authority, which runs the subway system, was negligent in any way. The MTA is a common carrier and must deliver a certain standard of care to its passengers. If this man’s death could have been prevented by the MTA taking reasonable precautions, a wrongful death lawsuit could arise. It will certainly be interesting to see how this case plays out.

Nearly four million New Yorkers use the subway everyday as their main mode of transportation. With that said, each day, numerous subway riders are injured on public transportation, mostly due to improperly maintained subways. A recent study conducted by the Federal Railroad Administration showed that on average, 3,000 train-related accidents occur every year that result in around 1,000 deaths and other catastrophic injuries.

The Metropolitan Transit Authority maintains the New York City subway system. Should subway riders in New York become injured, the MTA could legally be held responsible for any injuries suffered to its subway riders. If you or someone you love has suffered an injury on a train or subway in New York, you may be eligible to obtain financial compensation for your medical bills, lost wages and even pain and suffering.

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Anytime you are walking anywhere, you should always err on the side of caution and pay close attention to your surroundings when crossing the street. But, did you know that some roads are inherently more dangerous than others?

The most dangerous road for pedestrians in the tri-state area is the Hempstead Turnpike in Nassau County, according to the Tri-State Transportation Campaign. The road took the top spot for the fifth consecutive year since the group’s first analysis in 2008. Despite the fact that the New York State Department of Transportation started work in March 2012 to make the road safer by raising medians, creating new crosswalks, relocating six bus stops closer to crosswalks and changing traffic signals to calm traffic, it still ranked first in the 2013 analysis.

If you are wondering how the five boroughs ranked, Manhattan took first place with the most dangerous road being Broadway. This road saw 12 pedestrian fatalities over a three-year period and one fatality happening north of 96th Street. Broadway is also the most dangerous street in the Bronx. The most dangerous road in Brooklyn is Ocean Parkway. Woodhaven Boulevard is the most dangerous road in Queens for pedestrian-related auto accidents, and Richmond Avenue in Staten Island is the most dangerous road.

1422766_pedestrian_zone_sign (1).jpgBroadway in Manhattan was also recognized as the second most dangerous road in the tri-state area. Completing the list of the top 10 most dangerous roads for walking in the tri-state area were:

• Jericho Turnpike in Suffolk County, New York
• Sunrise Highway in Nassau County, New York
• State Route 110 in Suffolk County, New York
• Blackhorse Pike in Atlantic County, New Jersey
• Burlington Pike in Burlington County, New Jersey
• Route 1 in Middlesex County, New Jersey
• State Route 27 in Suffolk County, New York
• White Horse Pike in Camden County, New Jersey
• Route 9 in Middlesex County, New Jersey

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The mother of a 4-year-old girl who was struck and killed by an out of control car in Manhattan earlier this month has filed a lawsuit against the city, claiming that her daughter’s death could have been avoided if emergency vehicles had not been delayed in their response.

The 26-year-old mother said that while no amount of money can bring her daughter back, she wants the city to be held accountable for their actions so that this tragedy does not happen to anyone else in the future.

The young child was struck by a sport utility vehicle on June 4 as she was walking on the sidewalk with her grandmother on her way to school. The grandmother suffered injuries to her spine and ankle.

The 17-year-old driver of the SUV lost control of his car as he was being chased by police.

According to reports, city officials have admitted that there was a four-minute delay in dispatching an emergency vehicle to the accident site at Amsterdam Avenue and 97th Street. At a recent news conference, the fire commissioner blamed the 911 dispatcher who was sitting at the computer where the message arrived, but failed to respond in time. He rebuffed any suggestions that the mistake was a result of a failure in the city’s new 911 system, an advanced dispatch system that set the city back $2 billion.

1334533_ambulance.jpgHowever, the president of the union that represents the city’s emergency medical technicians, paramedics and fire inspectors, challenged the fire commissioner’s version of events.

He issued the following statement:

“The commissioner of the Fire Department tried to blame a young lady with an impeccable reputation for not doing her job, when the reality is that the call was never on her screen. I do know that in the weeks leading up to this incident there were many problems with the system.”

The family is apparently seeking $20 million in damages for the death of the young girl. The grandmother is also pursuing $20 million for her injuries. The lawsuit names the city, the Police Department and the Fire Department.

The driver of the SUV, who was allegedly driving without a license, was arrested and charged with manslaughter.

Losing a child is absolutely devastating for any parent. When such a tragedy claims a young life early and unexpectedly, dealing with the situation can be overwhelming. However, when someone else is to blame for a tragedy that could have been avoided, the family of the deceased can file a lawsuit to hold the negligent party accountable. While most people may choose to hold the careless or negligent driver liable in a crash such as this, as this case points out, there can be multiple parties to blame.

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A tourist from Terre Haute, Indiana is recovering after she was struck by a falling tree branch in Manhattan’s Central Park on Tuesday.

The woman’s name has not been released.

According to reports, the branch, about 3 inches around, fell from a tree and hit her at 3:45 p.m. Tuesday. She was conscious after the accident, but confused and bleeding from the head as an ambulance rushed her to a hospital.

This is not the first time someone has been injured by a falling tree branch in New York City.

917234_autumn_in_new_york_2.jpgIn June 2010, a 6-month-old baby was killed and her mother was injured when a tree branch fell on them while visiting the Central Park Zoo. In that same year, another man was also killed in the park by a branch that fell due to heavy snow. Finally, in 2009, a branch struck another person in the park leaving them with severe personal injuries.

While you may think that a falling tree branch can do no harm to pedestrians or bystanders, these accidents occur more than you think and can deliver devastating injuries. In fact, there are more than 100 tree and landscape fatalities that happen across the U.S. every year, according to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration. A fully matured tree can weigh as much as 10 tons, possibly more. When a tree of this size falls, the impact is undoubtedly strong enough to crush an automobile, seriously damage a home or building and severely injure or kill innocent onlookers.

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The Town of Chester Police will be hosting a free child safety event Saturday to help parents understand what they must do to keep their kids safe while traveling in an automobile.

The event, funded by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration with a grant from the NYS Governor’s Traffic Safety Committee, will be held from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Saturday, June 8 at the Town of Chester highway garage on Laroe Road.
Officers will be demonstrating how to properly install safety seats, as well as inspecting car seats. They will explain the benefits of using rear-facing seats, offer helpful tips and share other useful transportation information.

For more information call the police department at 469-7000 ext. 1.

825531_closed.jpgYou may be surprised to hear that car accidents are the number one cause of death in children ages 3-14 in the United States. Car accidents are traumatic, which is why children of all ages need special attention when riding in a car. Most adults fail to realize that it can take up to 12 years for a child to grow out of a car seat and be big enough to use safety belts. It is recommended for children to stand close to 5 feet tall and weigh between 80 and 100 pounds before using a seat belt. Until a child reaches that size and weight, car seats and booster seats need to be used to protect them in case of a collision.

So, just how effective are child safety seats? According to Safe Kids USA, child safety seats can be the difference between life and death should your child be involved in a serious automobile accident. Child safety seats reduce fatal injury by as much as 71 percent in infants and toddlers in passenger cars. When compared to seat belts, child safety seats reduce the risk of injury among young children by as much as 82 percent and fatal injury by 28 percent. The use of booster seats for children ages 4 to 8 reduces the risk of non-fatal injury by 45 percent compared to seat belts.

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A runaway trailer hauling crushed cars in upstate New York slammed into a minivan carrying two families Thursday, killing four young children and three adults in their early 20s.

All seven victims, including four children under the age of 10, were local residents.

Officials believe the trailer detached from the big rig and crashed into the van, basically ripping it apart. Both vehicles came to a halt on the shoulder of the roadway.

The crash occurred along a stretch of the two-lane road in rural Truxton, a town of only 1,100 located a few miles northeast of the city of Cortland.

Police said a few of the victims were trapped under the trailer. It had to be jacked up to get them out.

The collision is still under investigation.

Another man was injured when the van he was travelling in was hit by a trailer that broke away from a truck on Route 13 around 6 p.m. Wednesday in the rural town of Truxton, just 25 miles south of Syracuse.

1343698_trailer.jpgThe injured man was transported to Upstate University Hospital in Syracuse. No information is available at this time on his current condition.

According to officials, two people in the truck suffered no injuries.

Route 13 was shut down until 1:20 a.m. Thursday while police investigated the cause of the crash and crews removed debris and wreckage from the scene.

Even though officials have yet to determine the exact cause of the accident, it is clear that something made the trailer come loose. Sadly, this tragic accident serves as a reminder to all of us just how important it is to make sure all items you are towing are secured safely, especially now that summer is here and travel season is official underway. It is important to be aware that not just commercial trucks and big rigs can have cargo that can easily detach. Any items being towed, like boats or campers, can come loose if not properly attached and ultimately hold you accountable for injuries, and even deaths.

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An “unusual condition” was observed by the engineer of the commuter train that derailed last week in Connecticut right before the wreck, according to federal officials.
While that condition has yet to be revealed, federal officials did say repair work was done last month in the area of the crash.

The National Transportation Safety Board has not yet determined a cause of the May 17 crash that injured 70 people and interrupted service for days on the railroad used by tens of thousands of commuters north of New York City.

However, the NTSB did say that a joint bar, used to hold two sections of rail together, had been damaged and repaired last month. It was also revealed that rail sections in the area of the derailment have been shipped off to Washington for additional inspection.

The NTSB also shared that the Metro-North railroad is conducting an inspection and inventory of all the joint bars on its main tracks.

920015_commuters.jpgThe eastbound train traveling from New York City derailed during evening rush hour in Bridgeport before coming to a stop and being struck just seconds later by a westbound train. According to reports, the engineer of the westbound train applied the emergency brakes before smashing into the eastbound train.

The eastbound engineer told investigators he saw an unusual condition on the track as he approached the area.

Some of those injured in the crash have filed lawsuits alleging negligence by Metro-North.

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A 76-year-old patient on dialysis with two failed and diseased kidneys had the wrong kidney removed by a surgeon at Mount Sinai Medical Center In New York City.

The patient is currently doing well after doctors subsequently removed the second failed kidney.

The surgeon has since been relieved from his medical and administrative duties.

A Sinai spokeswoman apologized for the error, saying it should never have happened at Mount Sinai. The hospital would not reveal when the incident occurred or who the surgeon was that performed the botched operation.

Medical errors happen every day, but few are on this level of seriousness. Wrong side surgeries take place at various hospitals throughout the country, despite the fact that many facilities take great efforts to eradicate these types of mistakes in operating rooms. In July 2008, a surgeon at a Minneapolis hospital removed the wrong kidney from a cancer patient. The doctor argued that he was distracted by beeper calls and other patients in his care when he made a mistake on the patient’s chart, resulting in the failed surgery.

565751_a_babys_coming.jpgWhile this incident may seem like a slam dunk medical malpractice case, a patient that has endured this type of injury still needs to enlist the help of a NYC Medical Malpractice Attorney at Whittel & Melton to obtain any and all possible compensation and benefits. To prove that medical malpractice occurred, it must be demonstrated that the victim was harmed by the medical mistake. While the hospital announced that the victim is doing well, it is unknown whether any physical harm fell upon the victim. Regardless, the patient could have suffered mental and emotional anguish, something that victims can seek financial compensation for through a medical malpractice lawsuit.

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BMW is the latest vehicle manufacturer to join in on a widespread airbag recall announced last month affecting 3.3 million Hondas, Toyotas, and Nissans.

BMW announced this week that they will recall approximately 42,000 of its 2002-3 3 series models because a passenger side air bag defect could release shards of metal into the passenger compartment should a side frontal collision occur.

The recall affects 325ixT and 325iT Sports Wagons, M3, 325Ci, and 330Ci convertibles and coupes, and 325xi, 330xi, 325i, and 330i sedans of the 2002 and 2003 model years.

In the event of a crash where the passenger airbag is inflated, the device that causes inflation is at risk of rupturing, which could release metal fragments into the vehicle. If these shards make contact with passengers in the vehicle, it could lead to serious injuries, such as lacerations.

223790_interior_car_details_4.jpgWhile BMW owners should hear from the company regarding this issue this month, replacement components may not be available until July. As soon as the parts arrive, owners can bring their vehicles into their local dealership to receive free repairs.
Although BMW has not reported any serious injuries or deaths linked to this defect, that does not mean that no accidents have happened, or won’t sometime in the future. An auto accident can happen in a matter of seconds. If a driver or passenger is injured in a collision, they may not immediately think to question the impact of the deployment of the airbag, but with recent developments, this should be a concern.

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