Around 6 a.m. on Tuesday September 25, 2012 a bicyclist was struck and killed by a vehicle while he was biking on Queens Boulevard near Hoover Avenue in Kew Gardens. The vehicle fled the scene and the police are still trying to identify the driver. The bicyclist, identified as 38 year old Alex Martinez, was found unconscious in the middle of the roadway and his bicycle was completely destroyed. Mr. Martinez, a father of two, was rushed by ambulance to Jamaica Hospital were he died.
Reports identify Queens Boulevard as the "Boulevard of Death" due to the number of pedestrian fatalities that have occurred on this busy roadway which is also the widest roadway in New York City. Reports state that between 1993 and 2000, 72 pedestrians were killed on Queens Boulevard, many due to reckless drivers. Similar to pedestrians, cyclists are also vulnerable to reckless drivers on busy roadways such as Queens Boulevard.
With the City increasing bike lane miles across the five boroughs, cyclists should feel safe traveling on New York City streets. However, road conditions and driver distractions often lead to accidents with cyclists and pedestrians alike. Earlier this year the NYPD began tracking these bicycle accidents. It is important for cyclists to understand that New York City Traffic Rules grant cyclists the same rights to occupy New York City roadways as drivers.
Families of pedestrian or cyclists that have died due to a serious accident should be aware that the responsible parties could be held liable for the wrongful death of the individual. Bringing a wrongful death claim against a responsible party allows certain family members to be compensated for the financial losses caused by a loved one's death.
Block O'Toole & Murphy, LLP is a law firm that specializes in wrongful death actions, representing the victims and the families of victims that have died due to serious accidents involving cyclists and pedestrians. If you or a loved one was involved in a bike or pedestrian accident in New York City our experienced team of trial lawyers can help investigate your case and identify the responsible parties. Please contact us at 212.736.5300 or at www.blockotoole.com
NBC 4 New York, "Father of 2 Killed in Hit-Run on Birthday" Pei-Sze Chenge, September 26, 2012
New York Daily News, "Queens bicyclist, 38, killed in hit-and-run on 'Boulevard of Death'" Joe Kemp, September 25, 2012
New York Daily News, "Hard Look at Bicycle Accidents" Rocco Parascandola, April 6, 2012
New York Daily News, "Everything from murders to auto fatalities fall sharply" Jose Martinez with Pete Donohur January 2, 2005
Center for Disease Control - MMWR - "Current Trends Queens Boulevard Pedestrian Safety Project - New York City" February 10, 1989