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Levine and Slavit, PLLC - Blog

Personal Injury Attorneys - Manhattan, Brooklyn, Queens, Long Island and the Bronx

The New Move Over Law Gets Personal

Posted On May 1, 2011 @ 01:32 AM by Ira Slavit

No, I didnt get a ticket for failing to obey the new Ambrose-Searles Move Over Act that requires drivers to exercise due care to avoid colliding with an authorized emergency vehicle which is parked, stopped or standing on the shoulder of a road or highway with its emergency lights activated. More specifically, on parkways, interstates, and other controlled access highways with multiple lanes, drivers are required to move from the lane immediately adjacent to the emergency vehicle, unless traffic or other hazards exist to prevent doing so safely. So there we w

New York's Top Court Holds Uninsured Motorists Coverage Applies to Intentional "Accident"

Posted On Apr 9, 2011 @ 02:04 AM by SEO Admin

We've stressed to our clients and in our writings the importance of protecting them and their families by obtaining as much Supplementary Uninsured Motorists ("SUM") Coverage as possible. SUM coverage provides the insured and their family with coverage when they are injured or killed in a motor vehicleaccident the fault of someone else who has no insurance or less liability insurance than the insured.In this way, you are not at the mercy of someone who not only causes harm, but also has no or little insurance to compensate their victim.Butis there coverageif the injured is the victim of an intentional crime? Yes, says New York's Court of Appeals inState Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Company v. Langan, 2011 WL 1118579 (March 29, 2011

Bus Safety Subject of Legislative Attention Following Last Weeks Charter Bus Crashes

Posted On Mar 19, 2011 @ 11:14 AM by Ira Slavit

In 2009, the United States Department of Transportation (DOT) released the Motor Coach Safety Action Plan setting forth concrete steps for improving motorcoach safety. The action plan addresses major safety issues such as driver fatigue and inattention, vehicle rollover, occupant ejections and oversight of unsafe carriers. With the two recent fatal charter bus accidents, efforts are being speed up the implementation of the safety improvements. Available technology includes collision warning systems that alert drivers to obstacles in their paths and tell them when they are swerving from their lanes, strengthening bus roofs so that they aren't sheared off, as happened to the New York bus when it hit a signpost, and using anti-ejection glazing windows to prevent passengers from being

Court of Appeals Broadens Ability of Persons To Recover for Injuries Caused by Negligently Operated Emergency Vehicles

Posted On Mar 7, 2011 @ 10:34 AM by SEO Admin

A bit of a chill swept through the plaintiffs bar in 1994 when the Court of Appeals, New Yorks highest court, held that persons injured in motor vehicle accidents couldnot recover damages for injuries causedbymunicipal motor vehicles responding to an emergency responsible for the damages unless it could be proven that the driver a showing of reckless disregard for the safety of others, a much higher standard than the usual negligence. The court's interpretation in Saarinen v. Kerr, 84 N.Y.2d 494 ofsection 1104 of the Vehicle and Traffic Law ("VTL") caused attorneys to give great pause to taking on such cases. The courts dismissed many lawsuits that were brought where the conduct complained of seemed egregious. But some relief came last month in

Nassau Countys Hempstead Turnpike Retains Distinction A Being Most Dangerous Road for Pedestrians in NYC Region

Posted On Feb 20, 2011 @ 01:37 AM by Ira Slavit

This years report from the Tri-State Transportation Campaign concerning pedestrian safety in the New York City region finds that an average of 415 pedestrians are killed in New Jersey, downstate New York, and Connecticut each year. The report, Most Dangerous Roads for Walking, uses three years of federal data to pinpoint the exact location of each pedestrian death in downstate New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut. The chart below compares some of thisyear's figureswith last's.The most dangerous places for people to walk are roadways known as arterials - wide, high-speed roads designed to move as many cars

Red Light Cameras Reduces Rate of Fatal Red Light Running Crashes By 24 Percent in 14 Large Cities

Posted On Feb 15, 2011 @ 01:04 AM by SEO Admin

We've written previously about whether red light cameras are primarily intended to raise revenue. A new analysis by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety shows red light cameras saved 159 lives in 2004-08 in 14 of the biggest US cities. Extrapolating this data to all large cities, a total of 815 deaths would have been prevented. The results shows that red light cameras reduce not only fatal red light running crashes, but other types of fatal intersection crashes as well. Red light running killed 676 people and injured an estimated

Move Over Act Requires Drivers On The Road To Make Room For Ambulances, Police Cars And Other Emergency Vehicles

Posted On Feb 5, 2011 @ 03:57 PM by SEO Admin

Hoping to protect emergency responders on highways from themselves becoming involved in a motor vehicle accident, effective January 1, 2011, a new law in New York State, the Ambrose-Searles Move Over Act requires drivers to exercise due care to avoid colliding with an authorized emergency vehicle which is parked, stopped or standing on the shoulder of a road or highway with its emergency lights activated. Drivers must reduce speed on all roads when encountering such vehicles. Importantly, on parkways, interstates, and other controlled access highways with multiple lanes, drivers are further required to move from the lane immediately adjacent to the emergency vehicle, unless traffic or other hazards exist to prevent doing so safely. Unfortunately last night provided a vivid example of the importance of the new law. A veteran Nassau County police officer died early Saturday af

New York Bucks Nationwide Trend of Increased Pedestrian Fatalities

Posted On Jan 28, 2011 @ 12:43 AM by SEO Admin

A report released earlier this month by the Governors Highway Safety Association (GHSA) reveals that pedestrian fatalities increased during the first six months of 2010, by seven, from 1,884 to 1,891. The increase is small 0.4 percent but is notable because overall traffic fatalities during this period were significantly down, and it comes on the heels of four straight years of steady declines in pedestrian deaths. If the second six months of 2010 also show no significant change, this will be the first year of increase or no progress after four years of decline. Pedestrian traffic fatalities dropped from 4,892 in 2005 to 4,091 in 2009, an average decline of 200 each year. New York, however, like California and Texas, experienced reductions in pedestrian fatali

Car Roofs Getting Much Safer According to Insurance Institute for Highway Safety Tests

Posted On Jan 12, 2011 @ 02:32 AM by SEO Admin

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety's TOP SAFETY PICK award recognizes vehicles that do the best job of protecting people in front, side, rollover, and rear crashes based on good ratings in Institute tests. The winners offer a higher level of protection than federal safety standards require. Last year the Institute toughened criteria for TOP SAFETY PICK by adding a requirement that all qualifiers must earn a good rating for performance in a roof strength test to assess protection in a rollover crash. This toughened criteria lead manufacturers to improve roof strength so that whereas at the beginning of the 2010 model year only 27 vehicles qualified for the award, the number has now grown to 68. Vehicles rated good for rollover crash protection have roofs more than twice as strong as the current federal standard requires. The Institute estimates that such roofs reduce the risk

November 2010 Issue of NYC Vital Signs Devoted to Improving Traffic Safety in New York City

Posted On Nov 27, 2010 @ 06:30 PM by SEO Admin

The New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene released a data report focused upon traffic death statistics and touting its plans to improve safety in 2010-2011. The data in this report are from the NYC Department of Transportations (DOT) Traffic Fatality Database, the primary source of traffic-related death and injury statistics in New York City. Key findings included (1) males and people in their 20s make up a disproportionately high number of those killed in motor vehicle accidents compared to their prevalence in the population; (2) traffic fatalities in NYC disproportionately occur on major streets; (3) pedestrian fatalities occur most often at intersections along major streets; (4) risky driver behavior contributes to NYCs traffic fatalities unsafe speed, driver inattention, failure to yi

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