New York Bucks Nationwide Trend of Increased Pedestrian Fatalities

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 … Read the rest

NYC Buildings Department Announces Construction-Related Accidents Dropped By 28% In 2010

On January 11th, 2011, the New York City Buildings Department announced that there was a 28% decrease in construction-related accidents in New York City in 2010 when compared to the previous year.

In 2010, there were 157 reported construction-related accidents compared to 218 in 2009. There were four fatal construction-related accidents in 2010, a 78% decrease when compared to 2008. The total number of reported construction-related injuries also dropped from 241 injuries in 2009 to 165 in 2010, a 31% decrease. All four of the fatal construction-related accidents in 2010 – two in Brooklyn and two in Manhattan – involved … Read the rest

CPSC Approves Strong New Crib Safety Standards as 2008 Federal Consumer Safety Legislation Bears More Fruit

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) has recalled more than 11 million dangerous cribs since 2007. Detaching drop-side rails were associated with at least 32 infant suffocation and strangulation deaths since 2000. Additional deaths have occurred due to faulty or defective hardware. Federal crib standards had not been updated in nearly 30 years. But finally on December 28th, 2010 the CPSC approved new mandatory standards for full-size and non-full-size baby cribs.

The crib standards will cover used as well as new cribs. The mandatory crib standards will: (1) stop the manufacture and sale of dangerous, traditional drop-side cribs; (2) … Read the rest

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

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 … Read the rest

Plaintiff’s Hard Drive Off-Limits to Defendant in Wrongful Death Case Alleging Medical Malpractice/Product Liability/Negligent Training and Supervision

The plaintiffs in DeRiggi v. Krischen, 20753/08, NYLJ 1202476938011, at *1 (Sup., Nassau Decided December 17, 2010) sought to recover for the wrongful death of Patricia DeRiggi, who died at the age of 30 during percutaneous disk decompression surgery, an out-patient procedure used to treat lower back pain.

Plaintiffs allege that Mrs. DeRiggi’s left common iliac vein was perforated twice during the surgery resulting in an intra-abdominal hemorrhage and death. They also allege that the defendants HydroCision and/or New York Spinal Implants, the manufacturer and/or distributor of the Spine Jet HydroDisectomy System used in the procedure, were negligent … Read the rest

Municipality Liable for Slip and Fall on Black Ice Even Without Prior Written Notice

Slip and fall cases can be notoriously difficult cases in which to prevail, especially when the location of the accident is in a public area, such as a sidewalk or a parking lot. A key requirement is often the existence of prior written notice to the municipal property owner. But recently the Court of Appeals in San Marco v. Village/Town Of Mount Kisco, 2010 WL 5104993, 2010 N.Y. Slip Op. 09197 (December 16, 2010), held that since the black ice hazard at issue may have been created by the municipality’s negligent snow removal efforts, and, if so, the municipality may … Read the rest