Pedestrians Killed in Accidents to be Memorialized by Hells Kitchen Neighborhood Organizations This Saturday

Year ago our office represented the estate of Randolph Walker, who was run over and killed by a New York City Apple Tours bus in an accident that received much coverage in the press at the time. The circumstances were abhorrent and the company was effectively put out of business by the city after this accident. Just yesterday we were contacted by a community organization called CHEKPEDS (Clinton Hell’s Kitchen Coalition for Pedestrian Safety) and advised that a Pedestrian Memorial March will be held this Saturday, June 13, 2009, in memory of 6 pedestrians killed by careless drivers on … Read the rest

Bill Seeks to Improve Safety By Requiring Safety Device on New York City Housing Authority Elevators

Identical bills have been introduced in the New York State Senate (S04603) and Assembly (A8154) that would require the New York City Housing Authority (NYCHA) to place door or zone restrictors on its nearly 3,340 elevators. The devices prevent people trapped inside stalled housing elevators from opening the cab doors by locking the cab door when an elevator is not aligned with a floor landing. The devices operate even when an elevator loses power because they do not rely on electricity.

The bills come on the heels of a class action lawsuit filed in the United States Court for the … Read the rest

April Brought Us Not Just Showers But Also NYC Buildings Departments Construction Safety Week and the High Risk Construction Oversight Study

Last week was the annual construction safety week. The weeks schedule of events included seminars and events that were free of charge and open to the public. The seminars included: Safety Harness Giveaway & Worker Safety Training; How to Identify and Hire a Licensed Contractor; Homeowners’ Night: Resolving ECB Violations & Illegal Conversions; Construction, Demolition, & Abatement Operations; How to Obtain the New C-Class Hoisting Operators License; High Risk Construction Study: Cranes – Findings & Recommendations; High Risk Construction Study: Excavations – Findings & Recommendations; High Risk Construction Study: Concrete – Findings & Recommendations; Introduction to the New NYC Read the rest

Tragic Day Care Toddler Death Highlights Childrens Food-Related Choking Hazards

In 2000, 160 children age 14 and younger died from obstruction – 41 percent caused by food items and 59 percent by nonfood items. In part due to concerns about children choking, New York State regulation (18 NYCRR 418-1.5) requires handbags, backpacks or briefcases belonging to adults; plastic bags; and toys and objects small enough for children to swallow must be used and stored in such a manner that they are not accessible to children, especially in day care centers.

Unfortunately, an apparent violation of this regulation by an unlicensed day care center for toddlers turned tragic on March 17, … Read the rest

Fatal Fire Brings to Light Deficiencies in Fire Hydrant Inspection Requirements

On February 2, 2009, Amy Yeung perished in an apartment fire in Selden, New York. Firefighters reported that a lack of water pressure in the fire hydrant in her private community, Village in the Woods, made it more difficult to put out the blaze, and forced them to call for two water tankers from neighboring fire departments. This tragedy exposed a deficiency in the inspections of fire hydrants in private communities.

Neither Suffolk County nor the Town of Brookhaven regularly inspects private water systems to ensure that they have sufficient water pressure to fight fires. State fire code mandates annual … Read the rest

Death and Injuries Prompt Major League Baseball To Require That Each New Bat Be Examined and Certified For Safety

A major issue of concern that arose during this past baseball season was the frequent incidence of shattering baseball bats, particularly shattering maple bats. In fact, the issue was of such concern that baseball’s Safety and Health Advisory Committee was convened to study the problem and issue recommendations, including, if deemed appropriate, banning the use of maple bats.

After studying thousands of broken bats and hundreds that shattered into multiple pieces, the committee concluded the cause was the poor-quality “slope of grain” and ruptures caused by excessive bending. It was concluded that there was no inherent weakness in using … Read the rest

How Will “Doorbuster Bill” Proposed In Wake of Trampling Death of Wal-Mart Worker Effect Stores’ Civil Liability in the Future?

This past Black Friday bore witness to the inherent dangers in failing to properly control a crowd that could and did turn into a stampeding mob oblivious to the fact that a man was being asphyxiated beneath them. Two days after stampeding shoppers trampled a Wal-Mart worker to death at a Valley Stream, New York store, Queens-based New York City Councilman James Gennaro announced his plans to craft a “Doorbuster Bill” that would require retailers to enact greater security measures during major sales. Nassau County is apparently considering enacting a similar law.

On Black Friday, the now-traditional day after Thanksgiving … Read the rest

3 LIRR Train Accidents So Far This Year Isolated Incidents or a Pattern to Beware?

There have been three accidents thus far in 2008 at Jamaica Station, the Long Island Rail Road’s busiest station. Two of the train accidents have occurred within the last week, including one on November 23, 2008 that is being considered the worst accident in 15 years.

In that accident, an eastbound train entering Jamaica Station derailed as the eighth car passed over a switch. Three rear cars derailed, one jackknifing over three separate tracks. This accident damaged 4 of the 8 tracks at Jamaica Station. The week before, on November 19, 2 westbound trains bumped each other as they pulled … Read the rest

New Suffolk County Law Sets $150 Fine for Texting While Driving

Starting September 21, 2008, Suffolk County drivers caught driving while text messaging will face a $150.00 fine under a new county law that is the first of its kind in New York State. Westchester and Nassau recently approved similar laws, but those measures have not taken effect. New York City is considering a similar ban. Four other states have such a law: Alaska, Washington, Minnesota and New Jersey.

County officials said they hope that the new law will encourage New York lawmakers to approve a statewide measure. In May of this year, State Senate Republicans passed legislation yesterday prohibiting drivers … Read the rest

Add Laser Beams to List of Potential Injury Hazards at Concerts

People go to hear live music for a good time, but it’s not unheard of for disaster in the form of personal injury or death to strike. For example, on February 20 2003, fire erupted at a Great White concert killing 100 and injuring 180. The concert fire started when a spark from the band’s pyrotechnic gerbs display ignited the soundproofing foam insulation lining the walls of the club as Great White began their set.

On march 25, 1990, an arsonist started a fire at an unlicensed social club in the Bronx, New York, called “Happy Land”, that killed 87 … Read the rest