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New York Personal Injury Law Blog

2013 Numbers Show an Increase in Traffic Injuries and Fatalities

Last month, the New York State Department of Motor Vehicles released the official statistics of injuries and deaths caused by traffic accidents in New York City.  It turns out that the recent implementation of the new 25 mph default speed limit in the city is very timely, as according to Streetsblog, traffic injuries reached an all-time high in 2013.

The number of overall traffic injuries grew by about two percent between 2012 and 2013.  Pedestrian injuries rose five percent and bicyclist injuries increased by eight percent.  In total, vehicle drivers injured 11,398 pedestrians and 3,817 cyclists in 2013.

There was also an eight percent increase in the total number of traffic fatalities in 2013. Both injuries and fatalities were greater than in any of the previous five years. Within this category, pedestrian deaths increased from 135 to 183, after four years of decreased numbers of deaths. Consistent with previous years, motorists injured 4,278 children; eight were killed. Motor vehicle accidents are the leading cause of injury death among children in the city.

Car Maker Fails to Notify After Defective Ignition Switch Reported

The name of the first person known to have died because of a faulty ignition switch was redacted in the public report released by General Motors. Her family did not know that they might be eligible for compensation and had not been contacted by the giant automaker.

GM has linked 13 victims to the ignition switch defect, according to a story in the New York Times.  Her Connecticut family had thought that she died of a stroke while at the wheel.  She was 81 years old and although remarkably active, could have had a stroke or some other event that caused her to lose control of the car, a Saturn Ion. 

Recent Pedestrian Deaths Reveal Risk to Elderly

Right after the lower speed limits took effect in New York City as part of the mayor’s Vision Zero initiative to eliminate pedestrian fatalities, three people were killed this past weekend within a 12-hour span.  These most recent pedestrian fatalities occurred in Brooklyn, the Bronx and Queens.

In one incident, an elderly woman was crossing Conduit Boulevard near Belmont Avenue in the East New York section of Brooklyn when she was hit by a BMW.  The accident occurred around 11:40 AM on Saturday.  The driver of the vehicle stayed at the scene. 

Stiff Regulations Seek to Prevent Truck Accidents in NYC

Last week, a truck driver from Florida hit a bridge on the Merritt Parkway near the New York-Connecticut line, spilling the cargo, a load of butter that melted in the ensuing fire. The Parkway was closed for most of the day while the mess was cleared.

Semi-trucks are not allowed on the Parkway, and, according to the news report that quoted a Connecticut State Police spokesperson, the driver would have known that had he been using a commercial GPS system.  However, he was using his cellphone, and that GPS does not provide information about highway restrictions. 

Pedestrian-Car Accidents: Preventable with Speed Limit Change?

As part of Mayor de Blasio's Vision Zero initiative, an effort to eliminate pedestrian accident fatalities in New York City, the 30-miles-per-hour default speed limit has been lowered to 25-miles-per-hour. The change went into effect on November 7, and a piece in New York Magazine, summarized below, tells the story of the change and its hoped-for effect on the number of pedestrian deaths - a number that almost equals that of murders in the city.

NYC Law Firm Block O'Toole & Murphy, LLP, Named To National "Best Law Firm" List

U.S. News & World Report and Best Lawyers have announced their 2015 rankings, and we are proud to report that Block O'Toole & Murphy, LLP has been named to their prestigious list of "Best Law Firms" in the United States. Also, once again, the rankings include firm Partners Jeffrey A. Block, Daniel P. O'Toole and Stephen J. Murphy, individually, as "Best Lawyers" in the entire country.

NYC Personal Injury Law Firm Block O'Toole & Murphy, LLP, Secured The 10th Largest Settlement In The United States in 2014

According to The National Law Journal, the $8,800,000 personal injury settlement obtained by Block O'Toole & Murphy Partners Stephen J. Murphy and David L. Scher in January of 2014 was the 10th largest settlement in the entire country for the year 2014. On the day of her accident, Ms. Krluc was a 51 year old Queens resident, originally from Bosnia, who worked in hotel maintenance and was a loving mother and grandmother. It was an otherwise typical afternoon in early June and Ms. Krluc was walking to pick up her two grandchildren from their elementary school. Suddenly, a collision occurred in the adjacent intersection, between a Ford van and a Chevrolet minivan, which caused the Ford van to jump the curb and strike Ms. Krluc on the sidewalk where she was walking. She suffered numerous fractures and orthopedic injuries, but most significantly a brain injury, which her suit claimed resulted in permanent cognitive deficits, memory problems and mood alteration that had a devastating impact on her happiness and ability to enjoy a normal life.

Pedestrian Accidents More Likely on Long Island

This blog has reported frequently on pedestrian accidents in New York City and the efforts of Mayor de Blasio to combat the seeming epidemic of this type of accident. But what about Long Island? A report last year identified the roads in Suffolk and Nassau counties that are most dangerous and linked to a high rate of pedestrian deaths.

Child Killed Outside of School

A girl was killed and nine others injured when a car jumped the curb in front of a Bronx elementary school in Kingsbridge. The vehicle, a Honda Accord, was driven by a 55-year-old woman when it went into reverse in front of PS 307 at 124 Eames Place and drove onto the sidewalk, where children and adults were gathered around the school entrance.

Pedestrian Killed by Semi Truck in Glendale

The New York lawyers at Block O'Toole & Murphy are all too aware of the perils associated with tractor-trailer accidents. Too often they result in death. Today, media outlets are reporting that a pedestrian was struck and killed by a tractor trailer in the Glendale section of Queens. The male pedestrian was 46.