s

Tag Archives: negligent maintenance

State fair ride malfunctions causing injuries and one death

At a time when summer fairs are most popular for families, a tragic accident occurred when an amusement park ride malfunctioned according to reports in the New York Daily News. Video footage of the event showed that the seat of a ride called the “Fire Ball” broke and disconnected from the main pendulum. This sent ride accident victims crashing down to the ground, causing various degrees of injuries to seven people. Another man was killed in the accident after apparently being ejected from the machine and thrown into the air. Public safety experts note that the ride in question had been inspected several years ago for possible cracks and other dangers, at the request of the manufacturer. At that time, the manufacturer reported that there were concerns regarding a welding failure that could cause cracking and deadly malfunctions. However, it was unclear whether the ride had undergone more recent safety inspections to that degree to ensure rider safety. Advocates explain that cursory inspections are sometimes the only thing done before allowing unsuspecting fun-seekers from riding potentially dangerous rides. They say that regular maintenance is crucial as well as in-depth evaluations of all aspects of the equipment to avoid accidents and injuries. Some owners and operators avoid the high costs involved and negligent maintenance can sometimes be the result. This negligence is most concerning when dealing with equipment such as these carnival rides that move fast and high and often include high impact forces. This ride would swing people up to 40 feet in the air as it twisted and turned and then swung back and forth. Detailed evaluation and fixing of broken or deteriorated parts is essential given the heavy use and potential for harm involved. You can see more about this deadly amusement park accident with equipment failure here.

Photo for illustrative purposes only. Photo Credit: Ava [License]

Queens construction accident leaves injured worker with crush injuries

New York – Work crews were working at a construction site in the Kew Gardens neighborhood of Queens when a heavy metal beam fell onto a worker. The crush victim suffered leg injuries, including multiple broken bones in his legs after being trapped under the metal beam. The heavy steal I-beam was being used as a hammer by a crane to drive metal supports into the ground when it fell. According to witnesses, the hammer beam was suspended by the crane’s cable that broke. Investigators are looking into the reason for this apparent equipment failure that caused the accident. Experts say that the crane and its cable may not have been properly rated to hold such a heavy object such as this seven ton beam. However, other possibilities include that negligent maintenance or safety inspections could have led to the catastrophic collapse and the hardhat worker’s subsequent crush injury. The injury victim was rescued from the work accident site and taken to Jamaica Hospital for emergency treatment. To find out more about this worker’s comp injury, see this article.

Photo for illustrative purposes only. Credit: davocano [License]

$2.75 Million Premises Liability — Woman Suffers Broken Neck, Brain Injury From Falling Object

New York – A woman was walking along when a piece of stone facade collapsed off the side of a Brooklyn building. The collapse debris hit her in the head and neck, leaving her with a spinal fracture in her neck and a traumatic brain injury with concussion. After being hospitalized for several weeks and undergoing fusion surgery of her neck, the woman sought the legal guidance of the experts at Morrison & Wagner to file a negligent repair negligence lawsuit. They settled the case with the defendants agreeing to pay the injury victim $2,750,000.

Photo for illustrative purposes only. Credit: Bruce Monroe [License]

— — —

Woman’s neck fractured by falling piece of building’s facade (VerdictSearch by Priya Idiculla)

Settlement: $2,750,000

— — —

Court: Kings Supreme, Kings County, New York

Injury Type(s): brain damage; cognition, impairment; compression fracture; concussion; corpectomy; discectomy; effusion; finger; fracture, C4; fracture, neck; fracture, vertebra; fusion, cervical; hand; hardware implanted; head; memory impairment; physical therapy; pneumonia; shoulder; sutures; traumatic brain injury; trigger point injection; vertigo

Case Type: Premises Liability – Negligent Repair and/or Maintenance – Falling Object

Date: November 4, 2016

Plaintiff Attorney(s):
Eric H. Morrison; Morrison & Wagner; New York, NY

— — —

Facts & Allegations:
On Sept. 22, 2014, the plaintiff, an unemployed woman, was struck by a limestone fragment that had fallen off of the fourth-story facade of a building located in the Sunset Park section of Brooklyn. The woman sustained injuries of her head and neck.

The woman sued the premises’ owner and the premises’ manager. She alleged that the defendants were negligent in their maintenance of the premises. She further alleged that the defendants’ negligence caused the accident.

The plaintiff’s counsel contended that the accident was a result of prolonged neglect of the building’s exterior. He contended that photographs depicted chips, cracks and other irregularities of the facade.

Defense counsel contended that the accident may have been a result of erosion caused by power-washing of the building, but he ultimately conceded liability.

Injuries/Damages
The injury victim’s head was struck and lacerated by the limestone fragment. She was placed in an ambulance, and she was transported to Lutheran Medical Center, in Brooklyn. Doctors determined that she sustained a concussion and a compression fracture of her C4 vertebra. Her scalp’s laceration was closed via application of sutures. After four days had passed, she underwent surgery that included a corpectomy, which involved excision of her C4 vertebra; a discectomy, which involved excision of the anterior portion of her C3-4 and C4-5 intervertebral discs; fusion of the anterior region of her spine’s C3-4 and C4-5 levels; and implantation of a stabilizing cage. During her convalescence, she developed pneumonia and pleural effusion. Her hospitalization lasted about two weeks. She subsequently underwent physical therapy and a pain-management regimen, which included administration of painkilling trigger-point injections.

The accident victim claimed that her head’s injury caused damage of her brain, with residual effects that included confusion, disorientation, vertigo, and impairment of her memory and other elements of her cognition. She also claimed that her neck remains painful, that the pain radiates to her shoulders, and that her fingers and hands experience occasional tingling sensations. She undergoes periodic physical therapy.

The plaintiff sought recovery of past medical expenses, future medical expenses, damages for past pain and suffering, and damages for future pain and suffering.

Defense counsel contended that the woman did not sustain an injury of the brain.

Result
After selection of a jury, but prior to the scheduled start of the trial, the parties negotiated a settlement. The defendant’s primary insurer tendered its policy, which provided $1 Million of coverage, and the defendant’s excess insurer agreed to pay $1.75 Million. Thus, the settlement totaled $2.75 Million. Defense counsel claimed that, had a trial occurred, a discovery issue may have prevented the plaintiff’s counsel’s presentation of a safety expert who had been retained.

— — —

Judge: Judge Donald Kurtz

Editor’s Note: This report is based on information that was provided by plaintiff’s counsel and defense counsel. Additional information was gleaned from court documents.

Train derailment in Brooklyn causes mass casualty incident

New York – Long Island Rail Road (LIRR) company officials confirm that there were over 100 injury victims from this week’s train accident. Reports show that the LIRR train derailed in Brooklyn during morning rush hour as it pulled into the station. Inspectors from the transportation and safety bureaus were unsure as to what caused the crash but they note that the train overran a stopping block. They explain that the bumper is there as a safety design to prevent accidents and collisions. However, it is unclear if the accident occurred due to speed, driver error, broken equipment from negligent maintenance or even human error. Emergency responders from the scene transported the crash victims to various hospitals with wide ranging injuries, including spinal injuries such as neck and back pain, head injury, dental injuries and suspected broken bones. Drug and alcohol testing was underway for the train engineer, according to officials with the National Transportation Safety Board. You can read more about this derailed train here.

Photo for illustrative purposes only. Credit: Metropolitan Transportation Authority of the State of New York [License]

Two workers hit by a subway in Brooklyn train accident

New York — A Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) subway train accident injured one worker and killed a second victim in Brooklyn. The two transit workers were setting up warning lights to warn subway traffic into the Fort Hamilton station that construction and repair work was underway. The MTA uses these warning lights to signal train operators to slow down or stop. This safety system apparently failed when the workmen we struck by the train as it rounded a bend in the track. One of the MTA employees was injured in the work accident and taken to the hospital for care. However, the other laborer was killed in the train crash after suffering extensive and fatal injuries.

Investigators are looking into the cause of the collision to determine if any negligence may have caused the wrongful death. Union and work safety advocates note that more rigorous safety precautions are needed to protect workers as well as the public. They say that safety protocols must be reviewed and additional safety equipment should be issued to prevent future accidents or injury. Some have also pointed out that proper preventative maintenance is necessary to prevent an accident. Negligent maintenance has become an issue in many fast-paced workplace injuries according to specialists. To find out more about this workers comp injury please see this article.

Illustrative Photo Credit: Barry Pousman [License]

Long Island Railroad train accident injured tens of passengers

New York – This week’s train collision involved a passenger commuter train and a maintenance train. Long Island Railroad (LIRR) officials reported that there were approximately 600 passengers on the train at the time of the crash. The initial investigation reveals that the maintenance train got in the way of the commuter one as it was traveling on a nearby track. The closer-than-normal proximity of the 2 trains caused the train accident and led to the train derailment. As the trains collided and then derailed, victims were sent flying in all directions. Emergency responders reported that at least 33 accident victims were injured in the train crash. The injured people were extricated from the wreck and evacuated to area hospitals.

Commuter safety specialists and passengers alike have expressed their outrage. They complain that the train companies must tighten their safety standards to prevent such tragic accidents. They note that vehicles as large and fast as a train require the highest level of safety and accident prevention. Some have contended that safety enforcement has become too lax and has led to negligent maintenance of the equipment. They also warn that engineer drivers often speed and disregard safety directives. Many have pointed to the recent New Jersey train crash that killed one passenger and injured over 100 people on the train and in the train terminal. Federal investigators don’t believe there’s any relationship between these 2 incidents. However, public activists point to the overall environment of lax safety compliance as proof of a more systemic danger that has created a hazardous condition. You can see more about the recent train derailment with updates on the investigation here.

Illustrative photo credit: Metropolitan Transportation Authority of NY [License]

Child fell from a window of New York City housing project

New York – A 3-year-old boy fell out of a window in a tenement housing project in Harlem last week. Reports show that the child was able to push right through the loose window guard before falling to his death. The broken window guard was found on the ground next to the injured child. Officials examining the scene are trying to determine if the window guard was broken or possibly not installed correctly. Complaints from neighborhood activists say that negligent maintenance and installation of safety equipment is a known problem in many apartment buildings. Some have contended that management of these apartments routinely ignore requests for repair of broken equipment and safety hazards. However, others have explained that someone moved an air conditioner unit from that window and didn’t replace the window guard correctly. Investigators will need to determine if proper safety instructions in the use of the window guards were adequately explained to the family and residents of the apartment complex. They will also conduct tests to determine if faulty equipment failure played a roll in this fatal accident. The child fall victim plummeted 13 stories to the ground and possibly struck an object on the way down. He suffered fatal injuries, including a serious head injury, according to witnesses. Read more about this child who suffered fatal fall injuries here.

Illustrative Photo Credit: Paul Sableman [License]

Elevator accident leaves injured worker with arm amputation

New York – An elevator repairman was working on a recently installed elevator when a terrible accident occurred, injuring the worker. According to witnesses, the technician was in the middle of repairing the broken down elevator when something came loose. The man began screaming for help and a bystander called 911. Police, fire rescue and emergency medical services units raced to the scene and rescued the injury victim, treating him for an amputated arm and a leg injury. The wounded man was taken in to surgery in an attempt to reattach the severed limb. Trauma specialists explain that many times an amputation can be reattached but the victim can still be left with severe pain and suffering as well as a permanent disability.

An investigation into this case is underway, with building code and work safety officials looking into the cause of the accident. They will need to look at the training and safety equipment provided as well as the protocols being followed to determine if any negligence took place. In addition, they will need to see if any equipment failure or negligent maintenance of both the elevator and tools could have led to this horrific work injury. See this article for more details.

Illustrative Photo Credit: Aaron [License]

Preventing a work injury and knowing your rights if you are injured at work

New York – Work accidents are common but often avoidable, according to a New York City worker’s compensation injury lawyer. However, many employees and employers alike are unaware of how to go about preventing accidents, injuries and death in the workplace. There are several areas of responsibility that are shared between employer and worker to ensure safety while on the job. These include work-sponsored trainings that involve both formal and informal instruction on how to use equipment and avoid injury in all necessary settings. Also included is the responsibility of the boss and managers to provide safety equipment, such as helmets, secure scaffolding, rigging, harnesses, gloves, eye goggles, ear protection and the like. They are required to make sure that the equipment is not only available but also not broken and with proper instructions. Unfortunately there is sometimes employer negligence when it comes to these necessary safety points, which can lead to an unsafe work environment and even a hazardous situation. Negligent maintenance of equipment is an easily overlooked danger when employers and managers place heavy pressure of deadlines and productivity on their workers. However, a major concern also exists for jobs that involve repetitive motions, slip and fall hazards, overexertion and falling from a height. There are things that employees can do to protect themselves and prevent accidents but some employers try to shift the burden of safety entirely to the worker. This is a concern and should be discussed with a work injury lawyer.

Beyond work accident prevention, work staff should become familiar with their responsibilities and rights if they’re injured on the job. This can include immediate notification of the supervisor or boss of the injury, calling an ambulance, going for emergency or immediate medical treatment, if needed and filing all necessary paperwork about the accident and injury. Employers are usually required to maintain a worker’s comp insurance policy to pay for medical treatment of the injury. The worker also has the right to speak to an accident lawyer that specializes in workman’s compensation injuries for assistance. An experienced law firm can assist with obtaining insurance benefits, hospital, doctor and treatment coverage as well as filing a worker’s comp lawsuit, if necessary. This informative article can explain more.

Illustrative Photo Credit: Bill Jacobus [License]

MTA bus accident in Midtown leaves multiple injuries in its wake

New York – Yesterday’s Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) bus crash led to at least nine accident victims receiving emergency treatment of their injuries. Several of the injured passengers refused transport to a hospital but may require medical care at a later date. The bus driver admitted to losing control of the bus and crashing into a support pillar of a highway overpass bridge above. The questions regarding why and how the driver lost control remain the focus of the investigation. Police and MTA officials were looking into the cause of the accident, including a check into the driver’s safety record and accident history. They have received eye-witness reports that he was a distracted driver, possibly reaching to get a bottle when the motor vehicle collision occurred. The crash occurred near a curve in the road which may been a factor in the incident. Further scrutiny of this accident with injuries must include evaluation of the mechanical condition of the bus itself. Investigators will need to look at the repair and maintenance records for the vehicle to determine if it was safe for public transportation use. In addition to driver error, negligent maintenance can contribute to mechanical failures and an accident. The city’s MTA hasn’t issued a comment on the bus accident, pending investigation. However, public transit safety advocates are expressing deep concern regarding the driving habits of some of the drivers. They insist that the bus companies and city are responsible to take immediate corrective action against any dangerous driver in order to prevent more accidents, injuries and even death. You can read up more about this bus collision here.

Illustrative Photo Credit: Metropolitan Transportation Authority of the State of New York [License] Photo: Marc A. Hermann / MTA New York City Transit