May 11, 2014

Truck Accident 12

The respondents and plaintiffs in this case are Marcy Drucker and Leonard Hoffman, who are co-partners as the administrator of the estate of Samuel Hoffman. The defendant and appellant of the case is Knight of Rest Products Corporation. The case is being heard in the First Department of the Supreme Court, the Appellate Division.

The case involves a person injury negligence action and was heard by a jury. The jury returned with a verdict for the defendant, but through a motion of the court the verdict was set aside as contrary based on the credible evidence available in the case. The defendant is appealing this motion and states that the plaintiff did not prove prima facie in the case and the verdict should not have been set aside as the jury was not needed to draw the inference of negligence. The defendant states that the order to set aside the verdict and granting a new trial should be reversed and the verdict entered in favor of the defendant.

Case History

On the first of August in 1950 two trucks, one that was driven by the plaintiff and the other was owned by the defendant were involved in a head on collision. The day of the accident was rainy and the road was slippery. The plaintiff was thrown from his vehicle and sustained injuries as a result of the impact.

The defendant disputed both the liability in the matter and the extent of the injuries that were allegedly sustained by the plaintiff.

The defendant did not call their driver as a witness in the trial and offered no testimony to question their liability. The only evidence as to what caused the accident came from witnesses.

The plaintiff testifies that he was driving and the truck of the defendant came from the extreme left lane and then was right in front of his truck. He remembers flying out of the vehicle and that is it.

John Babick, was driving a car right behind the truck of the plaintiff and states that the truck of the defendant sideswiped the plaintiff’s truck and then hit the truck head on. He said the plaintiff was flung from the truck and was lying on the road and bleeding.

The defendant offered testimony from a physician in the case as well. The physician stated that the plaintiff sustained a facial bone fracture and negated the complaints of back injuries and neurological complaints. This was the only proof given in the case by the defendants.

Case Discussion and Decision

There was evidence that the road conditions at the time of the accident were unfavorable. However, there was no proof in the case as to what caused the driver of the defendant’s truck to swerve into the other lane. The only information given about the accident was provided by the witness Babick. When considering this it is apparent that the plaintiff did not establish prima facie in the case.

After reviewing all of the facts of the case the court has approved the appeal made by the defendant. The order that set aside the verdict and granted a new trial is to be reversed. The verdict in favor of the defendant is granted.

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May 7, 2014

Labor Law §§240 (1) and 241 (6)...cont

The project manager for the construction site testified that it was either his job or the job of the supervisor/foreman to tell delivery trucks where to put their loads. He testified that he was notified that a delivery was going to be made to the site that morning and that in turn called the supervisor. He stated that he told the supervisor to only put two or three pallets on the second floor and no more than that. He stated that the supervisor said that he would comply. After the accident, the project manager testified that the supervisor came to him and apologized. The project manager stated that the supervisor had confessed to him to having more than three pallets put on the second floor because “he wanted to make his job easier, so he would not have to go down to the ground floor.” The project manager also testified that he had told them that even with only the three pallets on the second floor that they would need to be spread out to the side walls after they were placed on the second floor. He stated that he learned later that the laborers had been unable to keep up with the speed of the delivery truck in placing the pallets.

The injured laborer filed his lawsuit citing breaches of Labor Law §§240 (1) and 241 (6) requesting a summary motion to show negligence against the two companies that were in charge of the construction site and its safety. Under Labor Law §240 employers are required to provide safety devices to prevent falls for workers who are working at elevations. In this case, the company failed to provide any type of safety device and so they are liable under this law for the employee’s injury. The law states, "All contractors and owners and their agents, except owners of one and two-family dwellings who contract for but do not direct or control the work, in the erection, demolition, repairing, [or] altering . . . of a building or structure shall furnish or erect, or cause to be furnished or erected for the performance of such labor, scaffolding, hoists, stays, ladders, slings, hangers, blocks, pulleys, braces, irons, ropes, and other devices which shall be so constructed, placed and operated as to give proper protection to a person so employed." In this case, the company failed to abide by these restrictions and the employee was injured. The court finds them liable under this section.

Labor Law § 241 (6) states, "All areas in which construction, excavation or demolition work is being performed shall be so constructed, shored, equipped, guarded, arranged, operated and conducted as to provide reasonable and adequate protection and safety to persons employed therein or lawfully frequenting such places." Clearly, this was not the case in this situation. The supervisor, knowing the danger to the employees if the load was placed on the unfinished floor continued to command the delivery driver to overload the floor until it collapsed injuring the victim.

For the victim to be able to demonstrate a claim under Labor Law § 241 (6), he must be able to show a specific safety rule that was violated by the company in question. And he must show that this violation was a proximate cause of his accident. In this case, he cited 12NYCRR 23-2.1 (a)(2) which states that "[m]aterial and equipment shall not be stored upon any floor, platform or scaffold in such quantity or of such weight as to exceed the safe carrying capacity of such floor scaffold, or platform." The Supreme Court again decided that the victim had made his case and that summary judgment is granted under this section assigning liability to the companies.

May 4, 2014

Labor Law §§240 (1) and 241 (6)

On March 12, 2002 a building was under construction at 195 St James Place in Brooklyn, New York. A cement bricklayer was working laying cement blocks on the second floor of the building. The second floor was partially constructed with metal beams and decking, but the front wall was still open. A crane type of machine that is used to place pallets of materials on the upper floors of the building was brought in to place several fully loaded, very heavy pallets on the second floor.

Almost as soon as the pallets were placed, the cement brick layer went over to them to get a bag of cement. As he approached the pallets, the floor gave way under the weight of the pallets. The cement brick layer and the heavy materials that were on the pallets, plummeted 15 feet to the lower floor causing the victim to sustain severe injuries. The victim filed a lawsuit against the company who delivered the materials that collapsed the floor and against the company that the construction supervisor worked for.

The driver of the crane type truck that delivered the heavy materials to the site testified at trial. He stated that when he arrived at the site and saw the condition of the building, he prepared to unload the truck on to the sidewalk. He was approached by a supervisor of the construction site who told him that he would need to lift the pallets up to the second floor. He testified that he informed the supervisor that the pallets weighed much too much to be loaded directly on to the second floor. He advised the supervisor that he thought the weight would cause the floor of the building to collapse.

The supervisor told him to place the materials on the second floor. He told him that as soon as he placed a pallet, the workmen would go to the pallet and unload it which would distribute the weight evenly about the site and the floor would hold. The driver of the delivery truck told him that he did not like that idea. The supervisor was persistent. The driver placed one pallet of sand far back on the second floor. The supervisor told him that since the building did not shake that it proved that it would be safe to place more weight on the floor.

The delivery truck driver placed two more pallets on the second floor. The supervisor again told him that it would be safe because the weight would quickly be evenly distributed. When he got to the last few pallets that were loaded with heavy concrete blocks, the delivery truck driver was very concerned about the weight load on the unfinished second floor of the building. He unloaded the first of the concrete block pallets onto the side walk. The supervisor went over to the truck and started to yell at him about not putting it on the second floor. Again the driver warned the supervisor about the danger of putting the heavy pallets on the unfinished second floor. Again the supervisor vehemently admonished him to unload the pallets to the second floor. Since he was worried that the customer would complain if he did not deliver the pallets where the customer wanted them delivered, he went ahead and put all of the remaining pallets on to the second floor. He testified that it was only about four minutes after he put the seventh pallet on the second floor that it collapsed.

To Be Cont...

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April 30, 2014

The worker was knocked off of the truck

On May 13, 2005 a iron worker subcontractor for the construction manager of the New York Times Building located at 8th Avenue and 40th Street in Manhattan, was unloading two steel beams from a delivery truck. They were conducting an operation called, “shaking out the steel” in which each beam is lifted by a crane and rotated so that it is in the proper placement to be lifted up to the building where it will be placed. Each of the beams is about forty feet long, fourteen inches high, and thirty six inches wide. They weigh between 4 and 41 tons each. The first beam was lifted and placed down on the truck bed without issue. The second beam was going to need to be adjusted by the employee to rotate it into the proper position. The employee mounted the truck and was attempting to rotate the beam when the crane unexpectedly dropped the beam down onto the truck. The worker was knocked off of the truck and onto the ground. The first beam rolled off of the truck and landed on the employee while he lay prone on the ground. The commercial truck accident crushed the employees’ legs and caused one of his legs to be amputated. The second beam did not fall from the truck because it was still attached to the crane.

The injured worker filed a lawsuit against the building construction company under Labor Law §240. He stated that it applied because the object fell that was being lifted. The building construction company argued that Labor Law §240 did not apply in this case because at best when the pipe was hoisted by the crane, it did not go above the employees waist as he stood on the truck. The court disagreed. They felt that this is not simply the case of something falling off the back of a flatbed truck. The proximate cause of the accident was that the crane operator dropped the second beam which struck the first beam and knocked it off of the truck.

The employee also sought judgment under Labor Law §200 common-law negligence where it is the duty of an owner or general contractor to provide construction site workers with a reasonably safe place to work. However, the court ruled that since the company did not supervise the work or have direct knowledge of the hazard, that Labor Law §200 cannot apply.

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April 26, 2014

On or around the years of 1997 or 1998, a woman was driving her car on State Route 53

On or around the years of 1997 or 1998, a woman was driving her car on State Route 53 at the intersection with State Route 17 when she was involved in an accident. She stated that as she approached the intersection with the intent to make a left turn, she stopped her car and looked to ensure that she could conduct the turn in safety. She stated that she observed a commercial truck, but that it was so far away and moving so slowly as not to be a hazard in her maneuver. However, as she was nearly through her turn, she was struck in the rear quarter panel by a motorcycle that she had been unable to see.

The motorcycle driver stated that he had been driving behind the slow moving truck and decided to pass it. He moved out from behind the truck into the right lane and was attempting to pass the vehicle when the woman’s car pulled out in front of him. In the original trial of the case, the court found that he was 70% at fault in the accident and that the woman who was turning left was 30% at fault in the accident.

He sustained severe injury to his left hand which required him to have surgery and to wear a cast for about one month. However, he had previously injured that hand in a chain saw accident and had limited use of the hand prior to the accident in question. The original trial awarded him only $5000.00 for past pain and suffering. The Supreme Court in this case did not feel that the award was sufficient. It was also noted that the victim had sustained damage to his two front teeth that required them to be pulled and a permanent dental bridge to be placed. His face and lip were cut and his nose was broken. These injuries by themselves would have caused him the substantial pain and discomfort following the truck accident that he was claiming compensation for. The court decided that this award should be raised to $35,000.00.

The Court ruled that all of the other compensation awards were fair and applicable to the case at hand and only had issue with the one award. They ruled that they would only affirm the verdict of the original court if the amount was duly raised. If the insurance companies refused to raise the amount, the verdict would be overturned and a new trial ordered.

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April 23, 2014

On December 29, 2003 a worker arrived at a job site at 1955 Second Avenue

On December 29, 2003 a worker arrived at a job site at 1955 Second Avenue, New York, New York to install a fence. The worker and his associates were all employees of a sub-contractor for a larger project. Their job was to install the fence. The larger project was for the New York Housing Authority. A different company was installing fuel oil tanks both below and above ground at the housing complex. Whenever a tank needed to be installed, a temporary chain link fence needed to be put up around it. One of those tanks was in the rear yard area at 1955 Second Avenue. The worker and his three co-workers parked their work truckon Second Avenue and unloaded the compressor. The compressor was very heavy, but it was on wheels.

The transport of the compressor was achieved with three men pushing the compressor while a fourth stood in front between handles like a rickshaw to pull and steer it. As they were moving the compressor down Second Avenue, one of the wheels jammed into a hole or depression in the roadway causing it to tilt to one side. The jarring motion of the compressor shoved the victim knocking him to the street. He sustained injuries in the fall. The victim filed a labor law claim because he contends that the City of New York failed to provide a safe place for him to work. His suit was filed against the New York City Housing Authority and against the companies that were in charge of the construction. Since he elected to receive worker’s compensation benefits, he was not allowed by law to file any direct lawsuit against the company that he was working directly for.

The Supreme Court ruled that since the victim was not able to show that the city had any prior knowledge of the sink hole that caused the compressor to tilt, it could not be held liable for any negligence in not having it fixed before the victim had his accident. Further, the victim’s claims against the companies that operated the construction site were dismissed. On the day of the accident, the only company employees that were at the site were the co-workers of the victim and the victim himself. There were no representatives of the charge companies on scene nor were they supervising or directing the task.

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March 6, 2013

Following the accident, the injured party filed a lawsuit against the Water Department and the Town of Hempstead.

In fall of 1989, an employee of the water department of the Town of Hempstead borrowed a city pick-up truck to drive it home. He had been allowed on several prior occasions to borrow the city truck to get home. He believed that it was OK for him to borrow it on this date to get home. On his way home, he was involved in an auto accident that resulted in serious personal injury. Following the truck accident, the injured party filed a lawsuit against the Water Department and the Town of Hempstead.

The Town of Hempstead countered that they do not feel that they should be held liable since the employee was not at work or engaged in any city business at the time of the accident. Further, he had not requested permission to borrow the truck on this date. The other times that he had been permitted to borrow the truck; he had asked for and received permission to do so. This was not the case on the night of this incident. In fact, the Staten Island employee’s job for the city did not require the use of a vehicle at all. The employee even testified that he had received specific instructions prior to the date of the accident not to take a truck home. He advised in testimony on several different occasions that no one had given him permission to use the truck on that night. He advised that he took it anyway because he needed to get home. The evidence that was presented in reference to the employee being told specifically that he could not take the truck home was not argued by either side. However, there were no prior violations by this employee or any other on file prior to the accident of the “no personal use” policy that had been implemented in the fall of 1989.

The Justices, however, ruled that since the employee had been allowed on prior occasions to use the truck, he would have believed that there was an inference of implied permission. Vehicle and Traffic Law § 388 (1) states that an owner of a motor vehicle is liable for the negligence of one who uses or operates the vehicle with the owner’s express or implied permission.

Because of this, the majority of the Westchester Justices ruled that the employee had discretion to use the vehicle and is liable to cover him in the accident.

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February 28, 2013

Serious injury results when tailgate opens

On April 1, 1987, a New York City Department of Sanitation employee was injured at work. That day, he was working with another employee of the New York City Department of Sanitation who was assigned to drive the truck. The injured employee was loading bags of garbage into the truck when the tailgate of the truck popped open and struck him in the groin area. As a result of the accident the Nassau employee suffered serious and permanent physical injuries. The injured employee alleges that the cause of the accident that day was that the other employee had failed to ensure that the tailgate pins locking the tailgate were free from obstruction and fully engaged.

A safety report that was issued following the incident states, “. . .it was apparent that 1 1/2 [inches] of debris by the left pin, and 1 1/4 [inches] of debris by the right pin. This debris, it appears, held the tailgate away from the body of the truck making it unable for the pins to rise to the proper level. The pins being unable to rise to the proper position enabled the tailgate to force open under pressure of cycling when the truck became loaded.” It was exposed that the pins were not checked that date at the beginning of the driver’s shift or when the vehicle was dumped prior to the truck accident. Failure to clear the debris out of the tailgate was a violation of department regulation teletype #86-3431.

Department regulation # 86-3431 states that the operator of a garbage truck in the city is not to rely on the electronic indicators in the cab area of the truck to determine if the tailgate is properly secured. He must get out and visually check the pins to make sure that they are not blocked by debris. The Suffolk safety inspector found debris in both of the pins and it was this debris that kept the pins from locking and permitted the tailgate to open. The supervisor that date stated that the driver was at fault and that he would be duly disciplined. The driver was not disciplined.

The court found that on the date of the accident it was the driver’s responsibility to check the pins. The driver stated that he did examine them. There are unresolved factual matters as to how the accident occurred and what the proximate cause of the accident was. Any summary judgments would be inappropriate in such a case. It was referred for trial.

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February 18, 2013

The incidents surrounding the accident are that a gas station was under construction on the corner

On June 3, 2004 on Jamaica Avenue near the intersection with Route 112 in the Town of Brookhaven, Suffolk County, New York, a man was involved in a three car truck accident that resulted in serious personal injury to a driver of a black Hyundai. The incidents surrounding the accident are that a gas station was under construction on the corner. The construction manager of the gas station operated a white van that was illegally parked in front of the no stopping or parking sign on the side of the roadway. A dump truck also working on the gas station was dropping off a dumpster at that location and was blocking part of the roadway. The driver of the dump truck stated that he put out cones and set his lights to emergency flash to let oncoming traffic know that there was a hazard. The first vehicle in the accident completed a left hand turn onto the roadway and was blocked by the dump truck. She stopped in traffic to wait for the dump truck to move. The second vehicle did not see her stop and struck her vehicle, which knocked her into a third vehicle and ultimately it was knocked in to the vehicle of the victim on the opposite side of the roadway. The victim filed a lawsuit against the construction manager for causing the truck accident. The construction manager alleges that he was not responsible for any vehicle other than his white van and that the dump truck was not his or in any way under his control. He states that liability should be attached to the dump truck company and not to him.

The Nassau Court hearing this matter states that there are serious issues of fact that need to be determined. Whenever such issues of fact exist, it is incumbent upon the Court to ensure that a jury hears the arguments. Any motions for summary judgment must be denied as a matter of course in such circumstances because the Court cannot determine which issues of fact are credible and which ones are not credible. Because material facts of this accident are in dispute or different inferences may reasonably be drawn as the facts of this case, the Supreme Court must deny the motion for summary judgment as requested by the construction manager and his company. Only a trial can resolve issues of fact that are presented.

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February 15, 2013

Delivery truck in the wrong pavilion

On January 9, 1960 an owner of a gasoline station in The Bronx, New York. On this date, the gasoline delivery truck arrived to fill the underground tanks. There is an asphalt area on the side of the station to provide the delivery truck with a safe location to pump out the fuel. The delivery trucks are not supposed to be on the concrete customer pavilion at any time. While the delivery truck is delivering the fuel, the owner would go out to the customer pavilion to be available in case of emergency since it took about an hour for the fuel delivery.

On the date of the commercial truck accident, the owner of the station was attending to a customer at the service island by pumping the gasoline into the customer’s car. The delivery truck was on the asphalt section delivering the gasoline. When the tanks were full, the driver got in and decided to cut through the concrete customer pavilion section rather than exit out of the station through the asphalt delivery side. He had failed to secure the handles to the bulk box compartment swinging doors on the side of the truck prior to pulling off. In fact, he stated that he did not even know that the owner was out on the customer pavilion and thought that he was still in the office area.

As the truck pulled past the owner of the station, he was struck in the rear end by one of the bulk box compartment doors that were sticking out. The force of the blow spun him around and into the rear tires of the delivery truck. A witness grabbed him and pulled him free of the wheels. This accident resulted in serious injury to the gasoline station owner. A lawsuit was filed by the gasoline station owner against the delivery truck driver and the company that the delivery truck driver works for.

At trial the jury found that the gasoline station owner was guilty of contributory negligence. The Supreme Court on appeal disagreed and stated that there is no evidence whatsoever to find that the station owner was responsible in any way for this accident. He was doing his job in a legal and safe fashion when the Long Island delivery truck left the area that it was supposed to be in and struck him. The trial court verdict was overturned and the case was remitted for a new trial.

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February 11, 2013

The eastbound vehicle was occupied by a male driver

On July 2, 1955 at around four o’clock in the afternoon, a truck driver left the Twin Bridges bar and headed west on Route 11 between Mooers, New York, and Champlain, New York. At some point his truck came in contact with a vehicle that was eastbound. The eastbound vehicle was occupied by a male driver, his wife, two daughters, and his daughter in law. The Staten Island male driver of the car was killed in the commercial truck accident. The wife was still in the hospital and unable to testify at the time of trial. The daughters both claimed that they saw the truck shortly before impact cross over the center line of the road to sideswipe their vehicle. The daughter in law, who was seated directly behind the deceased driver stated that she had observed the truck cross the center line previously and then return to the correct side of the road. She stated that as the gap closed between the two vehicles, the driver of the truck crossed the center line again and this time hit their car with his truck.

The driver of the truck was criminally charged with Driving Under the Influence of Alcohol or Drugs and later Vehicular Homicide. He was convicted and sentenced to five years imprisonment. The jury was not privy to this information and although there was much discussion about the truck driver’s condition, there was no proof of his condition presented in the court. In fact, although it was pointed out that at the hospital following the accident, the truck driver’s blood was drawn and was given to the State Trooper, the results of that blood alcohol content kit was not discussed in the civil trial. There was not even a mention that it was or was not tested. If the jury had been told of his criminal charges and arrest, the inference could probably have been made.

However, as it stands, the victim’s family’s Westchester attorney only brought forth witnesses who could testify to the truck driver’s condition the night before while he was at the same bar. He had been so drunk that he had tossed his truck keys to another patron. He was described as being loud and boisterous and causing a scene. However it was pointed out that this was his normal demeanor even if he was sober. It was clear that he was asked to leave the bar.

The Justices found that at no time in the original trial was the term intoxication defined. The Justices also found that the evidence of his demeanor and condition from the night before was highly prejudicial. They felt that this blurred the real issue “and confused the jury to a point which deprived the defendant of a fair trial.”

In this case, judgment is reversed on the law and a new trial ordered.

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January 31, 2013

Widow is awarded money for husband's demise

The Workmen's Compensation Board has made an award to the Nassau widow of an employee who suffered a fatal coronary attack, which the Board found was causally related to injuries he sustained in an auto accident during the course of his employment.

According to records in court, the worker was operating his employer's truck when it was struck by a United States mail truck. The impact caused him to be thrown to the pavement and he was unconscious for several minutes. He was taken to a hospital. The worker continued to do his regular work until his death several days later. According to a Suffolk doctor who was called at the worker's residence, the worker was acutely ill and was suffering from severe chest pains. After the doctor administered morphine to the worker, he was rushed to the hospital where he died few hours after. The death certificate shows the cause of death to be coronary occlusion and coronary thrombosis.

At the hearing, two doctors presented conflicting testimony regarding the cause of the worker's death. One doctor, testifying for the employer, said the worker's heart and other contents of his chest cavity were shaken up by the truck accident but that the condition of the heart, arteries and thrombus was formed more than two weeks before the fatal attack. The doctor who testified for the widow said the force of the blow sustained by the worker when he was thrown from his truck may have produced heart injury.

The court found it impossible to reject as insufficient in law the testimony of the doctor presented by the widow because, according to the court, it was not empty speculation, nor was it a mere general medical lecture. The court pointed out that the hypothetical question posed to the doctor contained all of the salient facts of the case, and his opinion was directed to those facts. The record emphatically establishes that in forming his opinion, he considered both the autopsy and microscopic findings.

There are in this case two conflicting expert opinions each one based upon the same facts. The selection of either is an exercise of fact-finding power which is entirely within the province of the Board and outside the limited jurisdiction of the court. The court said it is not its function to render a decision upon the basis of which expert opinion it deems is more weighty or persuasive. The testimony of each expert was sufficiently direct and specific to create an issue of fact and to warrant a finding either for or against causal relation. That issue has been resolved by the appropriate body the Board in favor of the widow, and the court said the record leaves it no course but to affirm.

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January 29, 2013

Telephone Co. truck injures eight year old

The records of the personal injury case showed that an eight-year old child was playing cops and robbers when he was struck by a car directly in front of a building owned and operated by a telephone company. The sources said the truck of the Manhattan telephone company was standing adjacent to and west of a vehicle parked near the easterly curb of the avenue where the accident happened. Thus, within the roadway of 32 feet, at the site of the truck accident, parked parallel, were three vehicles, two near the easterly curb and one near the westerly curb.

Prior to the occurrence of the truck accident, the child ran across the avenue from the west curb to the east curb. Upon arriving at the east curb, he was directly in front of the telephone company building; he then turned to retrace his steps in a westerly direction of the avenue and was struck down by one foot west of the telephone company's truck by an automobile proceeding northerly. The Queens operator of the northbound vehicle testified that prior to the accident he had stopped for a red light and then made a right turn into the avenue traveling north toward the scene of the accident. He said he observed the double parked truck.

The right front headlight of the northbound vehicle came in contract with the child. The operator of the northbound vehicle said he did not see the child prior to the accident. The child also testified that he did not see the moving vehicle before the accident. The mother of the infant testified that children habitually played in front of the telephone company building.

In the light of the physical and traffic conditions and the known propensity of children to play at or near the building, whether or not the telephone company's parked truck served to obstruct the view of the infant as well as the view of the operator of the northbound vehicle and thus present a hazard within the range of reasonable apprehension was a question of fact, the court ruled.

The evidence, the court found, does not establish the height, width, shape and construction of the parked vehicles, including the telephone company's, adjacent to the easterly curb of the avenue. The court noted, however, that the telephone company's brief concedes that the view of the operator of the northbound vehicle was obscured. This concession supports the inference that when the infant stepped off the easterly curb of the avenue, his view of the northbound vehicle also was obscured by the two paralled parked cars in front of him. The court said it cannot, as a matter of law, state that the infant was not within the zone of danger apprehended by the regulation against double parking.

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January 27, 2013

He was working as a concrete laborer on the site.

On November 4, 2003 at a construction site on Cantiague Rock Road in Hicksville, New York, an employee of a concrete company was injured. He was working as a concrete laborer on the site. His job on that day was to prepare a concrete frame for a lamp pole base in the parking lot area of the job site. While he was standing next to the hole that the lamp pole base was going to be put in, he was struck from behind. The blow knocked him in to the hole and caused him serious bodily injury. He never saw what struck him. Witnesses on the scene, however, stated that they observed the concrete laborer standing on the side of the hole placing the wooden frame. They stated that the concrete truck had begun to back up and apparently did not see the concrete laborer. The chute of the concrete truck was down in preparation for the pouring of the concrete into the hole. The chute struck the concrete laborer in the area of his upper back which pushed him in to the hole.

The Staten Island concrete laborer filed a law suit against the construction company, the property management company, the property owner, the concrete company’s independent contractors and the concrete company. Within the first year of the law suit, most of these companies were able to prove that they were not involved in the truck accident and had no liability connected with the accident. What was left was a lawsuit against the concrete company, the subcontractors of the concrete company, and the construction company.

The issues that are under evaluation in this suit are under Labor Law § § 240 (1), 200 and common law negligence claims. Also under consideration are Labor Law 241 (6) claims. The victim further alleges violations of the following Industrial Code regulations: 12 NYCRR §§ 23-1.23(a-c); 23-1.5(a-b); 23-1.5(c)(1,3); 23-1.7(b)(1)(I), 23-4.2(a, f-g); 23-9.7(d); 23-9.11(a).

In order for Labor Law § 241 to be applicable to this suit, the victim is required to show specific Industrial Code violations that support his cause of action. He did so and added US Dept. of Labor, Occupational Safety and Health Administration §§ 1926.601(b)(4), 1226.651(a) and 1926.702(b). Because the victim was able to articulate and specify the applicability of Labor Law § 241 9(6) he succeeded in convincing the court that his contentions held more weight than the company’s did.

However, the victim also attempted to add to his claim that there was a large pile of debris on the accident site that he believes could have caused the accident. The company disagreed and the Court Justices stated that there was no reason to believe that if the pile of debris had not been present, that the concrete truck would not have backed up to pour the concrete. Since the concrete truck would have still had to back up to pour the concrete, the accident still would probably have occurred. The presence of the pile or lack thereof would not have altered the facts of the case that set this accident in motions. In order for the company to complete the job required by pouring the concrete into the hole, the frame had to be placed by the victim and the driver of the concrete truck still had to back up and would most likely have still hit the victim. The presence of debris has no bearing on this case. The Westchester company did not suggest any arguments to overturn the complete dismissal of the victim’s Labor Law §§ 240 (1), 200 and common law negligence claims. Because of this, they are not part of the company’s motion and cannot be affected by the decision that the Court will render.
The Court must evaluate each of the Industrial Code violations as they relate to Labor Law § 241. The first one to be considered is 23-1.23 (a-c): Earth Ramps and Runways. Since there were no earth ramps or runways that might have been involved in this accident, this Industrial Code is not relevant to the facts of this case.

Industrial code 23-1.5 (a-b) and 23-1/5 ( c ) (1,3): General Responsibility of Employers deals with health and safety protection which is required. These subsections also deal with the requirement of competency in providing workers with a work place that contains equipment in good condition and safeguards to ensure a safe working environment. Since these subsections all deal with the general responsibilities of employers they cannot be a basis for liability under Labor Law §241 (6). In order for this Law to be in effect, the victim must site specific violations and not general conclusions.

23-1.7 (b)(1)(I): Protection from General Hazards, (b) falling hazards (I ) hazardous openings does not define what is meant specifically by a “hazardous opening.” This Law is also not relevant to the accident in question because it deals with providing barricades or substantial cover over an opening. In order for the job to have been completed, this Law cannot apply since covering the opening would have prevented the pouring of the concrete to complete the job. Also, barriers would not have prevented this accident since both the concrete truck and the concrete laborer had to be present within the confines close to the hole in order to make the lamp post base.

Likewise, 23-4.2(a. f-g): Trench and area type excavations, does not apply since this was not a trench or an excavations. There were no walls that required shoring. This accident did not result of because of a slide and/or cave in.

Labor Law 23-9.7 (d) refers to the backing of trucks at construction sites. However, this law is also not applicable because there was an additional employee who was in place to observe, guide, and signal the driver of the cement truck as it was backing up. This rule also does not take in to consideration an employee standing off to one side while a vehicle is backing and getting struck by something protruding from the vehicle.

Labor law 23-9.11 (a) as it pertains to mixing machines and charging skips is not relevant since this accident did not occur as a result of walking under a charging skip. There were no charging skips involved at all. Because none of the specific Industrial Codes listed by the victim were relevant to this case, the Court finds that the victim’s Labor Law § 241 (6) claim is dismissed.

Continue reading "He was working as a concrete laborer on the site." »

January 19, 2013

Vehicle in accident not covered by policy

On June 19, 1965, a company truck belonging to a fleet of company vehicles was involved in a serious accident resulting in injuries and lawsuits to recover damages. However, when the Bronx owner of the fleet applied in a timely manner to their insurance company for litigation support and the benefits owed under the policy, they were informed that the particular vehicle in question was not covered under the policy.

A review of the policy showed that although the company owned five vehicles, three of the five that were listed on the policy had different engine numbers than the vehicle insurance policy. In fact, the three vehicles that were listed on the policy were not owned nor had they ever been owned by the company. The company filed a lawsuit against the Queens insurance company claiming a mutual error in the policy and demand for benefits.

The insurance company contended that since the vehicle that was in the truck accident was not listed on the policy that it would not be covered. The court maintained that there have been numerous other cases that have been examined in situation like this. It is more important that the written word of the contract reflects the verbal agreement between the parties than the other way around. Since the intent of both parties was to insure the fleet of vehicles owned by that company, the insurance company needs to make the adjustments to the policy to demonstrate that fact. That means that the vehicles that are listed on the policy, but that are not owned by the company need to be removed. It also means that the vehicles that are owned by the company and not listed on the policy need to be added. In all of the precedent cases reviewed this correction to comply with the verbal agreement between the parties was upheld.

The Supreme Court ruled that since the intent was to cover the vehicles owned by the company and that there is no doubt that this vehicle was owned by the company at the time of the accident, it should be covered. They point out that if one of the vehicles that was listed on the policy, but not owned by the company in question had been involved in an accident that their belief is that the insurance company would have failed to insure it because its agreement was with the company to insure its fleet and the vehicle was not part of the fleet.

It is so ordered by the Justices that the insurance company is held liable to represent the company as the insurer of the vehicle.

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January 17, 2013

Nissan driver loses control of car

On October 24, 2009 at approximately 4:15 a.m. a Nissan was north bound on the Seaford Oyster Bay Expressway when the driver, the son of the owner, saw a license plate in the roadway and attempted to avoid hitting it. The Nissan swerved, lost control and then struck a concrete divider wall. The operator of the vehicle stated that following the one car accident, he collected the license plate and called a tow truck to come remove his vehicle.

Following the accident, the Suffolk operator of the Nissan discovered that the license plate had come from a vehicle that had been involved in an accident on the opposite side of the expressway six days earlier. He filed a lawsuit claiming that the tow truck company that had removed the driver’s vehicle from the first accident had not removed the debris from the roadway properly according to Traffic Law § 1219 (c ).

Vehicle and Traffic Law § 1219 (c ) states that “[a]ny person removing a wrecked or damaged vehicle from a highway shall remove any glass or other injurious substance dropped upon the highway from such vehicle". Several precedent cases were discussed with varying degrees of applications to the accident in question. Ultimately the question at hand deals with the liability of the tow truck driver or the owner of the vehicle from the previous accident to be responsible for any debris that was left in the roadway that could and did cause an additional accident.
The Supreme Court in this case was approached the night before trial with a request for summary judgment in the case of the owner of the vehicle that was involved in the first accident. It was decided that since she had no knowledge or responsibility to the removal of the vehicle which was done by the tow service that her request for summary judgment was appropriate and was approved.

The second request for Summary Judgment came from the tow service because they state that they were hired and directed by the City and that they responded accordingly. They were dispatched to the one side of the expressway where they collected a vehicle and cleared all debris. They were unaware of any debris that had gone over the median wall onto the other side of the expressway and did not intentionally leave any debris behind.

The Nassau Court agreed and so ordered for summary judgment on the side of the towing service that no liability be assigned to them in this case.

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January 13, 2013

Rental truck runs into rear of another vehicle

On August 6, 2005 an employee of an ice company was driving a rental truck on Rout 25A at the intersection of Warner Road in Huntington, Long Island, New York at about ten in the morning when he ran into the rear end of another vehicle that was stopped at the traffic light.

In this case, the owner of the rental truck company is asking for a summary judgment relieving it from liability due to the coverage under the Graves Amendment that provides an owner of a vehicle that “is engaged in the trade or business of renting or leasing motor vehicles shall not be liable under any State law for damages sustained in a motor vehicle accident provided there is no negligence or criminal wrongdoing on the part of the owner.” (see, 49 USC § 30106[a])

The driver of the rental truck opposes this motion since he claims that when he attempted to stop the truck, he discovered that the truck’s brakes were faulty. He claims that his negligence to maintain the truck in a safe fashion removes any protections that the Graves Amendment would otherwise have provided to the truck rental company.

As far as the liability that exists for the driver of the truck. A prima facie case of liability is automatic when an operator of a moving vehicle strikes the rear of a stopped or stopping vehicle. In light of the facts at hand it is clear that the injured party has established its case against the driver of the truck. However, it is now triable issues of fact that the driver of the truck alleges the brakes were insufficient to stop the truck and that he is not responsible for the accident because of the brake failure. The driver of the truck is compelled to bring evidence to prove that the brakes were not safe and that the rental truck owner had knowledge or should have had knowledge that the brakes were not sufficient to stop the truck safely. Additionally, the injured driver stated that he has been involved in several accidents which have caused previous injury to his back. The insurance company for the driver of the truck has filed a motion to have the driver examined and to have information presented to determine which of his injuries are old and which ones are new.

The Justices order that there is enough question of fact for no summary judgment to be made and the case will go to trial.

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January 10, 2013

Falling debris causes major injuries to worker

On July 2, 1998, the Supreme Court Appellate Division First Department of New York was called upon to decide the issues in a case possibly involving a commercial truck accident. On the date in question, an employee of a property management company was working in a 40 story building that was under construction. It was his responsibility to prepare the stock room and make sure that the tools required to operate the building were at hand. One of his duties was to read the water meters in the building. While he was walking along a sidewalk near the loading dock where the construction deliveries were made, a net that is suspended over this walkway to catch falling debris from the upper stories fell on him causing substantial physical injury.

There are numerous questions of fact as it regards the incidents in this case. Some of the witnesses claim that the accident was caused when a truck delivering glass to the site was backing along the side near where the net attaches to the building. They contend that a handle sticking up from the top of the truck snagged the netting and pulled the net down. Other witnesses state that the company that was hired to keep the debris removed from the net so that the net would not get weighted down failed in their duty to keep the net clean and the weight from debris piled up in the net caused the net to fall. Another theory is that the net fell frequently and was faulty.

The court was concerned with several of these issues. In particular they felt that the fact that the crank handles on the truck were enmeshed in the net following the accident did not demonstrate that the handles had snagged the net. They stated that it was not surprising that the crank handles should be enmeshed in a net that had fallen on the truck covering it.

The injured Manhattan property manager had filed action based on Labor Law § 240 (1) and Labor Law § 241 (6). The Court found that since Labor Law §240 (1) dealt with injuries to construction employees only, and that since the injured party in this case, was a property manager and not a construction worker that Labor Law §240 did not apply in this case. However Labor Law § 241 (6) would.

As it regards Labor Law § 240 (1) was "not designed to encompass the type of routine maintenance work performed * * * which is 'far removed from the risks associated with the construction or demolition of a building'” (Manente v. Ropost, Inc., 136 A.D.2d 681, 682, 524 N.Y.S.2d 96). The injured party had produced several precedent cases in which to show an applicability of his accident under Labor Law §240(1). However, the court duly noted that some of the cases that the injured party had used as precedent, actually concerned Labor Law 241 (6) and not Labor Law § 240 (1). It is the responsibility of the injured party in cases such as this one to prove that he meets the elements of the Labor Laws in order to invoke their protections. “To invoke the protections of Labor Law §§ 200, 240(1) and 241(6), the injured party ‘must demonstrate that he was both permitted or suffered to work on a building or structure and that he was hired by someone, be it owner, contractor or their agent.’" (See, Gibson v. Worthington Div.--McGraw-Edison Co., supra.) Because the record in this case clearly shows that the property manager was not employed or involved in construction work, it limits the Labor Laws that are applicable in this case. His activities on any work day and certainly on the work day in question were maintenance and operational by definition. These activities as remarked in Phillips v. City of New York, supra 228 A.D. 2d 570 held that Labor Law § 240(1) was not designed to encompass routine maintenance work "which is 'far removed from the risks associated with the construction or demolition of a building' and that takes place 'in a non-construction, non-renovation context'” in light of these facts, the injured worker’s Labor Law § 240 (1) claim was dismissed. The Justices also state that his Labor Law 241 (6) claim should be dismissed for the same reason in that Labor Law § 200 is the most appropriate law to apply to the safety issues at this work site. Labor Law § 200 discusses the common-law duty of an “owner or contractor to provide employees with a safe place to work, the application of which is not limited to construction work and does not exclude maintenance personnel, was properly sustained.” (See, e.g., Jock v. Fien, supra, 80 N.Y.2d at 967, 590 N.Y.S.2d 878, 605 N.E.2d 365.)

The issue as the cause of the accident falls in many forms. The most important problem in this case is that no one actually saw what caused the net to fall. All of the discussed theories have some form or another of merit which brings into discussion the liability of each party involved to one degree or another in the use of this net that caused the accident. Obviously, several workers knew that the net was not reliable, yet no one reported this problem up the chain of supervision. Therefore if the net was defective, it could not be replaced and the faulty nature of the net could not be documented.

The next theory discussed the fact that the company that was supposed to keep the debris out of the net was not doing a good job of ensuring that the net remained unburdened by the weight of debris. If in fact, it is proven that the amount of debris that was in the net at the time of the accident was excessive, then liability will fall with them. It is a similar story with the truck lever.

The court rules that there are enough questions of fact to preclude a summary judgment in this case except where it involves the modifications of the Labor Law Statutes that are invoked as previously stated.

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January 7, 2013

On Sunday, March 28, 1982 a commercial truck accident occurred

On Sunday, March 28, 1982 a commercial truck accidentoccurred in the Rotterdam Industrial Park in Schenectady County, New York. A part time employee of a transport company rented a truck from a local truck rental company and drove it to the industrial park on that date to collect a load of apace heaters that needed to be transported for shipment the following day. His nine year old son was with him in the rental truck, as was his employer. His employer’s 16 year old son and a friend of his arrived shortly thereafter in the employer’s personal car.

The Bronx employer got out of the truck at the industrial park office. The employee, his son and the two teenaged boys continued to the bay where the space heaters were located. The employee backed up the truck to about a foot or so from the building. He stated that the left just enough room for a person to get by while loading the truck. He then left the truck in reverse, but turned the ignition off. They began to load the truck.

While loading the truck, the employer’s 16 year old son decided that they needed music. He went in to the passenger compartment of the rented truck and tried to turn on the radio. It would not work. He then decided that the ignition must have to be on in order for the radio to work. He turned the ignition key and the truck came on. It lurched backward three times because it was in gear. By that time, the employer had gotten to the location. He jumped into the truck and turned it off.

When the truck lurched backwards, it pinned the employee against the wall crushing his right leg at the knee area. The injury resulted in arterial damage as well. The employee spent the next two and a half years between the date of injury and the date of trial suffering excruciating pain. He suffered pins being placed into his leg, casts, and traction devices. Multiple surgeries, relearning to walk and still the doctors stated that he would have to have the leg amputated. Damages were awarded to the worker in the amount of $1.8 million. The Long Island owner of the rental truck company contends that the amount is excessive and should be reduced.

The court disagreed.

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January 3, 2013

A wife, on behalf of the estate of her late husband, commenced an action

A wife, on behalf of the estate of her late husband, commenced an action against the owners of the Westchester company employing the husband, a truck company and a steel company, to recover money damages for the wrongful death and conscious pain and suffering of her husband.

According to sources, the husband was severely injured in the course of his employment during tree cutting and removal operations when he was struck by a tree trunk which was suspended from a crane and wire rope, which were designed, manufactured and sold and distributed to his employee by the defendant companies. He died as a result of those injuries. The husband's employer, a business involved in the storage and transportation of bleachers, was clearing property leased by it from the couple to create storage space for bleachers.

The New York Labor Law imposes a non-delegable duty on owners and contractors to provide reasonable and adequate protection to workers making them "responsible for a breach of the requirements of the statute irrespective of their control or supervision of the work site." While the duty imposed by the law may not be delegated, the burden may be shifted to the party actually responsible for the accident either by way of claim of apportionment of damages under certain rules or by contractual language requiring indemnification by the injured worker's employer.

In this case, the owner of the equipment, which caused the truck accident, claimed no defect in the premises themselves, but focused on the existence of a defect in the crane's wire rope or negligence in the supervision and execution of tree cutting and removal operations. The oral lease agreement to the property owner's family-held corporation is silent as to the details of safety rules and even as to decisions on property alterations. The Staten Island court found that there is some evidence that the couple took no part in the supervision of the operation, but that she observed the operation of the crane shortly before the accident occurred and her actual or constructive knowledge of the unsafe manner in which the operations were performed is a triable issue of fact.

The court further noted that the couple supervised the employer's operations and appears to have been responsible for establishing equipment inspection procedures and supervising the details of tree cutting operations. Any actual or constructive knowledge the couple had in their capacity as supervisor existed, and is inseparable from his knowledge as property owner. Because exercise by the property owner of control over the details of the manner of work, or actual or constructive knowledge on the part of the property owner of an equipment defect gives rise to liability under the Labor Law, they constitute triable issues of fact.

Losing a loved one and being involved in a lawsuit as a result of the negligent acts of someone else is difficult for all. To preserve and protect your rights, there are Attorneys who will stand by you and help see you through your case. These Attorneys can argue your side and make sure that you and your loved ones are compensated.

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December 31, 2012

This is a case between two establishments, a service station and a flower shop

This is a case between two establishments, a service station and a Bronx flower shop, as well as the insurance companies of each of these two establishments and is about the commercial truck accident, which occurred in the flower shop and in the service station.

The owner of the truck is a couple who has been a regular customer of the service station for quite a long time. When the male owner died, the female owner wanted the truck to be sold for $100. She asked the male manager of the service station to sell the truck. He agreed to do so and went to the residence of the owners to retrieve the truck. Because the car couldn’t start, he towed the car to his service station, all with the permission and consent of the female owner.

After the male manager had repaired the car, he placed a “for sale” sign on the car and parked it on the southern side of the service station. The truck’s front end was facing the northern part towards the flower shop. Te flower shop was adjacent to the service station’s north line. The truck was parked on that area for two to three weeks, before the commercial truck accident happened.

On January 8, 1965, the male manager closed the service station at around 9 in the evening. In the morning of January 9, 1965, the male manager received a call from the village policeman. The male manager went to the service station and saw that the truck had collided with the flower shop. The flower shop’s windows were broken. The male manager called the female owner and told her what had happened so she reported the commercial truck accident to her insurance company. The male manager also reported the event to his insurance company.

The owner of the flower shop filed an action against the male manager of the service station and the female owner of the truck, because of the damages to properties that had happened. The flower shop’s owner claimed that the commercial truck accident was due to the negligence on the part of the male manager in terms of parking the truck. The male manager’s insurance company wrote and demanded the female owner’s insurance company to furnish the coverage of the accident because the male manager was insured under the provision of the policy of the female owner’s insurance company.

However, the Long Island insurance company of the female owner told that of the male manager’s that it would not honor the male manager’s coverage. The insurance company said that the coverage policy does not apply to the service station’s operators, with respect to the accidents that may arise out of the operation. The case went on and decided the judgment against the male manager.

The action made by the male manager’s insurance company is for the judgment against the insurance company of the female owner, for an amount of $1246.97. The amount is for the judgment in the action made by the owner of the flower shop. The whole amount came out of the damages, the defense’s legal expenses and prosecution’s legal defenses.

The policy of the insurance company of the female owner says that the amount paid by the insurance company will be due to the damages incurred and that the damages may include personal injury or damage to the properties.

The policy also defined the term ‘insured’. The unqualified word ‘insured’ may mean the name of the person insured, whether the person is an individual, a spouse or someone who was using the vehicle in the course of the accident, provided that the owner of the vehicle permitted that person to use the vehicle. They are the ones who are responsible for the use of the vehicle.

When the male manager took the truck from the female owner’s residence, with the keys in it, placed the sign on the truck and parked the truck on the service station, the male manager used the truck with the female owner’s permission. This means that the female owner gave her consent to the male manager’s use of the truck. When the male manager used the vehicle, he became a part of the provisions, “while using” and the “actual use”, of the insurance policy. The male manager also became an additional insured, based on the provisions of the insurance policy.

As the male manager became an added insured under the insurance policy of the female owner, the female owner’s insurance company has to pay the amount that the male manager has to pay. This is because of the commercial truck accident happened when he “used” the truck.

Even though the commercial truck accident has already happened two to three weeks after the truck was being parked on the service station, the truck was not moved from the time it was parked there until the morning of the commercial truck accident. There is no evidence saying that someone has seen the accident happening. There is no evidence saying that someone did something on the truck, which made the truck to move and collide with the flower shop, as well. It is also speculation that there is a third party that may have intervened and caused the truck to move from its initial position. There is no evidence saying that an independent act or intervening cause had occurred to cause the accident.

The court found that the commercial truck accident occurred in the flower shop, which resulted to damage to properties, was caused by the male manager’s decision to park it in front of the flower shop on the service station. However, the male manager did not use the truck during the service station’s business operations and the commercial truck accident did not happen during the service station’s business operation, as well. The male manager did not become a part of the policy’s exclusionary provision, as he became an added insured.

The male manager’s insurance company is entitled to receive an amount of $1246.97 from the insurance company of the female owner. The amount is based on the judgment amount paid by the male manager’s insurance company as payment for the action made by the flower shop. The female owner’s insurance company also needs to pay another $1080.85 to the male manager’s insurance company for the expenses incurred in the defense of the male manager in the court trials with cost of interest.

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December 28, 2012

Hartford Fire Insurance Company (Hartford Co.) motions an order

Defendant Hartford Fire Insurance Company (Hartford Co.) motions an order, in pursuit of CPLR 3212, which aims to dismiss the complaints of a truck driver and his wife, plaintiffs, on the specific ground that plaintiff is not actually insured under that of Hartford Co.'s insurance product and that he was not in fact an occupant of the insured truck at the time that the commercial truck accident happened. The Manhattan plaintiffs contradicted Hartford Co.'s expressed motion for summary judgment and made a cross motion for an order in pursuit of CPLR 3212, which purports to grant them summary judgment on the grounds of liability and goes down into the actual computation of damages and consequently in aid of NYCRR 60-2.3, which deems Hartford Co. to have given due consent in the aforesaid action amounting to a total of $25,000.

The aforesaid instant action is geared on uninsured motorist benefits wanted by the complainant in lieu with the said motor vehicle accident which took place on May 13, 2004 when the plaintiff, who stood outside of the delivery truck that he used for his job on making beer deliveries to various establishments, was suddenly hit by a box truck and was injured as he was pushed in between the box truck and his own delivery truck in the 18-wheeler crash. Following the aforesaid accident, Countrywide Insurance, the insurance carrier for the owner of the box truck, offered the full policy payment amounting to that of $25,000 to plaintiff. Subsequently, in accordance to filing a demand for settlement, the plaintiff then filed the aid instant lawsuit which seeks to recover underinsured motorist benefits that is under the SUM certification of the said policy which was issued by Hartford Co. to the employer of the complainant, Windmill Distributing Company, LP, which is doing business under the name of Phoenix Beverages, Inc. (Phoenix), that actually insured the said delivery truck which the plaintiff used in order to make deliveries. The Hartford Co. Policy actually provides underinsured motorist benefits which amounts to $1 million to the insured person as well as to any other occupant of a motor vehicle that is supposedly insured for SUM on the said policy.
In the statement given, the plaintiff further attested that he was actually newly employed by Phoenix on the day the accident happened. His job routine task at that time comprises of mainly driving the beer delivery truck as well as distributing the beer products to different establishments which includes beer distributors as well as bars. On that fateful day where he acquired personal injury in the accident, he went on the assigned delivery route which he was assigned to cover for a week.

He further stated that his first stop for deliveries was at Europa Bar in Brooklyn, New York. He had a companion at that time, his co-worker who rode as passenger and was helping him in his beer deliveries.

The truck has a standard size of about 25 to 30 feet long. The beer products which need to be delivered were placed in 12 separate bays located in the rear of the truck; each having 6 on both sides of the delivery truck. The bays can be easily retrieved thru six distinct gates that can go up and down simultaneously on both sides of the delivery truck.

The Plaintiff stressed that upon arrival at the Europa Bar, he then parked just beside the bus stop which is located at the right side of Manhattan Avenue. After he has eased parking, he then turned off the ignition, put the hazard lights on, and then went out of the delivery truck. He proceeded to remove the beer cases which was placed at the third bay right at the driver’s side of the vehicle that is situated facing traffic, and then placed the beer cases right into the hand truck. He then carefully closed the door to the compartment and went ahead to deliver the beer cases in his hand truck to Europa Bar. When he arrived at the Europa Bar, he removed the beer cases from the hand truck and then replaced them with the empty beer cases right on the hand truck that he will take back to the delivery truck.

At the delivery truck, he proceeded to unlock and open the third bay and then placed the empty cases on the pavement which he was going to return to the truck, then he discharged full beer cases from the delivery truck, and then placed the full beer cases on his hand truck for the second delivery, after which, he then went on to place the empty cases of beer on the third bay. Upon doing so, he then properly closed and locked the truck.

The plaintiff further retaliates that when he returned to the delivery truck, a police officer instructed him to move his vehicle on grounds of illegal parking at a bus stop. He then positioned the delivery truck right down at Manhattan Avenue and then parked fronting a fire hydrant. And then he went out of the vehicle; in which he made sure to turn off the engine as well as turned the hazard lights on before doing so. He and his co-worker walked back to Europa Bar with their hand trucks and transported the beer products to Europa Bar.

After he was done with his second delivery of beer products to Europa Bar, he then wheeled his hand truck to the direction of the driver's side of the beer truck. He then unlocked and opened the third bay of the delivery truck and prepared to set the empty beer cases inside which he just got from the Europa Bar. When the truck accident happened, he was not yet unloading the empty cases as he was still moving the empty cases inside the truck to make room for the ones he got from Europa Bar. He was not leaning forward to the bay of the truck when he was doing the arrangements because the bay was full of beer cases and it was absolutely unnecessary for him to lean down because he can reach on to the beer cases even without doing so.

He also said that his co-worker who was helping him out with the deliveries was still at the Europa Bar when the accident occurred. When he was hit by the box truck that apparently made the plaintiff forcibly pushed forward, dragged about 10 to 12 feet and he was pitted in between the truck box and his delivery truck.

The specific policy included that a person insured is described to be as follows;

• The person as the name insured and his or her spouse who are cohabiting the same house
• Pertains to another occupant of the insured vehicle at the time of the accident
• A vehicle duly insured for SUM under a specified policy coverage
• Any other type of motor vehicle that is being managed or operated by both you and your spouse

Hence, term "occupying" in relation to the subject SUM endorsement pertains to the act of entering or exiting by the plaintiff from the insured vehicle.

In congruence to its motion for summary judgment which seeks to dismiss the complaint of the plaintiff, Hartford Co. stresses that the said plaintiff was not in fact an occupant of the insured delivery truck at the time the accident took place. Further, Hartford Co. pointed out that the plaintiff already completely vacated or exited the insured delivery truck and was deemed away from the insured vehicle for a long duration of time as plaintiff and co-worker were busy with transporting beer products to Europa Bar as well as returning with the empty beer cases in the hand truck back to the delivery truck in situ. Thus, Hartford Co. states that the plaintiff's mere brief contact with the insured vehicle while returning the empty beer cases into the bay right at the truck rear could not be considered as still being an occupant of the truck at which time the truck accident happened.

In lieu with his contradiction to that of Hartford Co.'s appeal for summary judgment and also his own cross-motion for summary judgment basing on the issues of liability, said plaintiff hands over a sworn statement which discusses the following statements in detail.

That on May 13, the plaintiff was driving the delivery truck that is owned by his employer, Phoenix, wherein he has to make rounds of deliveries of beer products to varied customers of Phoenix which includes beer establishments as well as bars. He then managed to park the delivery truck near their first stop, the Europa Bar. Further, the plaintiff adds that his departures from the delivery truck, while he was making beer deliveries as well as returning the empty beer cases into the truck, were very brief as he has every intention to immediately return to the delivery truck due to the fact that he still has lots of deliveries to do at that particular day.

He stated that he was out of his truck for just 10 minutes during the second round of deliveries that he made to Europa Bar. He then returned immediately to the delivery truck and he was moving and arranging the empty beer cases so as to make sufficient room for the other beer cans that he was going to put into the third cargo bay of the delivery truck. While he was doing this; his upper torso was actually inside the delivery truck while his feet stood firm on the ground and his hands were in direct contact with the beer cans inside the truck.

As he was busy making room inside the truck in order to place the empty beer cases inside, he was unknowingly hit at the back with the box truck. His body was pushed in a forward motion and was pinned right in between that of the box truck and the delivery truck that he was driving. Moreover, the plaintiff purports that he was indeed occupying the beer truck at that significant point in time wherein the accident occurred as he was in direct contact with the truck and his connection with it has not been blatantly terminated.

Additionally, the plaintiff contests that Hartford Co. should be prevented from denying him his SUM coverage that he deserves on specific grounds that the latter failed to serve a disclaimer in lieu with the claim for benefits that that the plaintiff has filed. Furthermore, the plaintiff also contends that Hartford Co. should be considered as to have given due consent to that of the settlement of underlying claim which was served between the plaintiff and that of the insurer for the third-party which amounts to a total of $25,000 because apparently the plaintiff's legal counsel informed Hartford Co., in pursuit of 11 NYCRR 60-2.3, that Countrywide Insurance Company, which stands as the insurer for the third-party, had ultimately presented the full policy limit payments in the amount of $25,000 that corresponds to the finals as well as full settlement of the said plaintiff's claim against the stated third party, and subsequently, the counsel did not receive due response from that of Hartford Co. approximately within 30 days after the notice has been delivered.

It is important to note that summary judgment is only granted when there are no given material issues of fact which stands trial. There should also be enough and substantial information to support such claim. After which, the burden of proof is now in the opposing party to produce evidence that could cripple the testimony of the plaintiff and submit the necessary material issues of fact in the court.

After due examination of given testimonies and facts, the court then finds that there are material issues of facts present and thus both parties were denied their claims. However, the court sides with the plaintiff in his claim that he was indeed occupying the said truck because of the fact that his ties with the truck was not severed as he was using it to make rounds to establishments which is a part of his work and considering that there were no previous passengers noted in the said delivery truck. Although as a matter of law they were not able to determine whether the plaintiff can be considered an occupant of the said truck and the fact that Hartford Co failed to disclaim the coverage which makes the said coverage null and void; like it never existed. There were material issued noted upon examination of the deposition of both parties that is why both claims were denied in its entirety.

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December 19, 2012

On August 24, 1950 a truck was involved in an accident that resulted in a personal injury claim

On August 24, 1950 a truck was involved in an accident that resulted in a personal injury claim. An action was commenced in the Supreme Court of Kings County for review. The elements of this case are that following the accident, the Brooklyn insurance company for the truck contacted the insured person who had been driving the truck and told him that he was not going to be covered in the accident. The insurance policy had been purchased about four weeks prior to the accident and was supposed to be in effect for one year.

However, 21 months after the truck accident and an entire year after the notice of a lawsuit action had been served; the insurance company contacted the driver and informed him that at the time of the accident, his insurance had lapsed due to a suspension and that the insurance company would not be covering the accident. The date that the accident occurred was in the early part of the policy and clearly within bounds of being covered by that policy. The driver of the truck filed a lawsuit to make the company supply the insurance coverage that he had paid for.

The Supreme Court stated that after a review of the evidence in this case, there was no evidence that either the driver or anyone on behalf of the driver authorized suspension of the policy. Further, they could find no one in the insurance company who had authorized a suspension of the policy at any time and certainly not during the time span that covered the accident in question.

In fact, the court stated that the insurance company had already undertaken the defense of the driver in this truck accident. It is unclear why they waited until 21 months after the accident before disclaiming. Since the company still retained the entire premium money which was paid for insurance by the Queens driver, which included the truck that was in the accident. All of these facts support the finding that there was never a suspension in coverage of the truck that was involved in this accident.

The Supreme Court orders that the insurance policy was not suspended and that the policy was in effect. The insurance company is hereby ordered to defend the driver in the action resulting from the personal injury accident in Kings County.

Issues of law are constantly changing. A person who is not specifically trained in the law cannot begin to know what all of their rights are without the assistance of a professional. Here at Steven Bilkis and Associates, we provide Truck Accident Attorneys, Injury Lawyers, Big Rig Jackknife Injury Attorneys, and 18 Wheeler Crash Injury lawyers. Commercial Truck Accident Lawyers will stand by you and ensure that your rights are protected. Wrongful Death Attorneys can argue your side and make sure that you and your loved ones are considered. We make sure that you are rightfully awarded compensation for your suffering.

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December 14, 2012

This case is fairly straightforward

This case is fairly straightforward. It involves a truck accident which happened in the afternoon of October 1958. A panel truck was parked at the curb between an X-ray mobile truck parked in front of it and an unoccupied car parked behind it.

As the Nassau driver of the panel truck maneuvered to drive away from the curb, he first backed the truck for a distance of several feet. The right rear bumper of the truck accidentally caught onto the left front bumper of the car behind it so that as the driver drove the truck forward, the car was pulled along and propelled into the rear of the X-ray mobile truck in which the complainant was waiting to be X-rayed.

The Suffolk complainant requests the court for a summary judgment against the owners of the truck and its driver (who however died before the summons and complaint could be served to him). They also request for immediate assessment of damages by a jury. The owners of the truck, the defendants, moves that the plaintiffs be prevented from presenting a bill of particulars to the jury since they failed to provide this before initiating the demand.

Given the facts of the case, the complainant is clearly entitled to recover. The defendants opposed the motion for summary judgment but they did not present any proof and questions of doubt with respect to the truck accident which would require a trial. Additionally, the defendants do not deny the allegations that at the moment of the truck accident the panel truck was being operated by the driver as a matter of their business and also with their knowledge and consent. Moreover, as a response to the complainants allegations regarding the details of how the truck accident happened, the defendants merely denied any knowledge.
Considering these responses made by the defendant in the light of the facts, the court determines that there is no sufficient reason to deny the motion for instant judgment. In fact, the defendant’s allegations in their opposing affidavit, concerning information which it allegedly received regarding the accident, includes a statement allegedly made by the driver to the investigator employed by the defendant’s attorney. This gives the lie to the defendant’s claim of lack of knowledge as to the circumstances of the truck accident. In view of this, it must be presumed that defendant had plenty of chances to find out the facts relative to the truck accident.

Notwithstanding the opportunity which the defendant had to inform themselves of the facts, the information about the accident which was brought to their attention as referred to in their affidavit, does not bring up any material dispute as to the circumstances of the truck accident. Assuming, as claimed by the defendant that the car parked behind their truck was illegally parked, and even though there was no contact between the truck in question and the X-ray mobile where the complainant was, these facts do not serve to relieve the defendant of their liability since the operation of the truck was the immediate cause of the truck accident.
With regard to the motion by defendants for preclusion of the bill of particulars, the court believes that the bill of particulars would affect the determination of the motion for summary judgment. However, the defendant is entitled to the particulars with regard to the injuries allegedly suffered by the complainant and the related damages. The court grants the motion to preclude unless the complainants provide the defendants with a bill of particulars within ten days after a copy of the court order is given to the defendant. Otherwise, the motion to preclude is denied.

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December 12, 2012

The accident report has to speak for what happened in the accident.

On October 31, 1958 a mother was waiting to have her infant daughter x-rayed in a mobile X-ray truck, the truck was struck by another vehicle. The child was injured in the accident. The driver in the commercial truck accident later died. The accident report has to speak for what happened in the accident.

Apparently, the commercial truck driver attempted to move his vehicle which was parked against the curb in front of the place of business. There was an unoccupied vehicle parked behind his truck, and the mobile X-ray truck was parked in front. The driver put his vehicle into reverse and struck the car parked behind him. The bumpers interlocked due to the size difference in the vehicles. The commercial truck driver pulled forward causing the vehicle attached to its bumper to come into hard contact with the mobile X-ray truck that had been parked in front. The impact caused the injury to the infant.

The parents of the infant filed suit in Brooklyn, New York against the driver and the company that employed the driver for damages incurred because of the driver’s actions. They asked the court for an order granting summary judgment against the company and to direct immediate assessment of damages by a jury.

The company that hired the driver made a cross-movement for an order of preclusion because they claim that the parents of the infant had failed to serve a bill of particulars to them after it was requested. Further, they claim that they have no knowledge or information about the nature or circumstances of the accident. They also state that because the driver is deceased and cannot tell them what happened that they should not be held to as a high a degree of proof in opposing the motion of the parents as they would have if the driver was still alive.

The court held that in light of the fact that the incidents and particulars of this case are not the exclusive knowledge of the parents. The facts involved in this case are public knowledge and documented in reports that could easily have been obtained by the company or its representatives prior to the court date. Further, the parents provided the following documentation to the company in their opposing affidavit: a statement allegedly made by the truck driver to an investigator hired by the parents before his death. Because these items were provided to the company, the court presumes that this company had ample opportunity to become aware of the facts of this case prior to trial.

There is no dispute about how this accident occurred. There is no dispute about who caused the accident in that there was only one driver involved. There is no dispute that the actions of the driver caused the injury to the child.

The court finds that there are ample grounds to direct a motion for summary judgment and an assessment of damages for the parents. The court also finds that more detail needs to be provided to the company in reference to particular charges. So the parents are ordered to provide the information to the company within 10 days after service or the motion to preclude will be granted.

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December 10, 2012

On February 19, 2005 a commercial truck accident occurred near the intersection of First Avenue and 78th Street

On February 19, 2005 a commercial truck accident occurred near the intersection of First Avenue and 78th Street. A pedestrian was attempting to cross the street on 78th Street. A commercial truck was attempting a left turn from 78th Street onto First Avenue heading north. The Queens pedestrian was struck by the rear left wheel of the commercial truck while he was inside the confines of the crosswalk. While this would seem to be a straightforward account of an accident, there are still questions to be answered. Depending on the way you evaluate an incident, the fault can lie with either party.

The victim states that the truck driver is responsible for the accident and his injuries because he was lawfully crossing the street inside the crosswalk when the commercial truck accident occurred. The commercial company that owns the truck claims that the pedestrian was intoxicated and that the truck never hit him. They claim that he walked into the back wheels of the truck while he was intoxicated.

The question is considered as to whether a pedestrian or a motorist has the right of way at an intersection and code 34 RCNY § 4-04(b)(1) clearly states that “the operator of a vehicle shall yield the right of way to a pedestrian crossing a roadway within a crosswalk when the pedestrian is in the path of the vehicle or is approaching so closely thereto as to be in danger.” Also Vehicle and Traffic Law §115(a) provides “when traffic-control signals are not in place or not in operation the driver of a vehicle shall yield the right of way, slowing down or stopping if need be to so yield, to a pedestrian crossing the roadway within a crosswalk on the roadway upon which the vehicle is traveling. . .” Several expert witnesses were offered who stated that had the driver been using due caution and looking in his mirrors for pedestrians, the accident would not have occurred. They stated that they believed that the truck driver should have been able to stop the truck which would have prevented injury to the pedestrian.

The commercial truck owners presented a doctor who worked at the emergency room where the victim had been taken following the commercial truck accident. He stated that in his professional opinion, the victim had been intoxicated when he examined him in the emergency room. However, since there was no blood alcohol test administered, it is only the doctor’s personal observations that led him to believe the state of the victim was intoxicated. There is no medical proof that the victim was intoxicated at the time of the accident or to what degree, if he had been drinking that he was impaired. Especially, since another witness who stated that he had seen the victim just minutes before the commercial truck accident and that he had not observed any visual signs that the pedestrian was drunk. In court, one witness does not necessarily count out another witness that says the opposite. Each witness must be evaluated based on the veracity of their testimony.

There was discussion brought up at the trial that alleged that a piece of the back of the commercial truck was sticking out and that it is that faulty part that struck the pedestrian. Since each commercial vehicle company maintains a Vehicle Condition Report for each vehicle the victim requested a copy of the Vehicle Condition Report for the truck that hit him. Also contained in this report would be the condition of the vehicle as a whole, to include the brakes, horns, mirror, etc. Each commercial truck is also required to have a CADEC electronic recording device for this company. This device consists of an electronic recording cartridge and a recorder. The electronic cartridge records information from the vehicle such as the speed which is recorded at given intervals set by the company. The victim’s requests for this information have been ignored repeatedly. Rather, the company provided him with sample reports that did not relate to the specific vehicle involved in the accident. Some of the witnesses also alleged that the truck was travelling at an excessive speed at the time of the commercial truck accident. The records from the CADEC and the Vehicle Condition Report would then become even more important to the outcome of this trial. However, the company maintains that due to a technical glitch, the CADEC electronic cartridge from the vehicle in question did not record any information on the date of the accident. The driver stated that he handed his Vehicle Condition Report in to his supervisor at the end of his shift, but the company claims that they cannot locate the Vehicle Condition Report for that vehicle for the date of the accident. The victim presents the supposition that the company has intentionally spoliated evidence by misplacing the Vehicle Condition Report and failing to preserve the CADEC electronic report.

Under New York law, “spoliation sanctions are appropriate where a litigant, intentionally or negligently, disposes of crucial items of evidence involved in an accident before the adversary has an opportunity to inspect them.” Kirkland v New York City Housing Authority, 666 NYS2d 609 [1 Dept 1997]

The company submitted copies of depositions that stated that it is not unusual for the company to lose Vehicle Condition Reports. They also stated that their CADEC electronic devices have a 25% failure rate. Since there is no evidence to imply that the company intentionally disposed of the evidence from these sources, the court advised that the company must provide to the victim the maintenance records concerning the vehicle that was involved in the accident.

The court decided that the Long Island company’s motion requesting a summary judgment on the issue of liability is denied and that the victim’s motion to strike the company’s answer for spoliation of evidence is also denied except that the company is required to produce a copy of the maintenance records on the vehicle that was involved in the accident.

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December 9, 2012

Following the notification of a lawsuit, the business notified their insurance company

On May 8, 1964, a truck driver for a commercial company drove his employer’s truck to a business on Lake Shore Drive in Oswego, New York. Upon his arrival, the truck was being loaded by a crane operated by an employee of the business with scrap metal. One of the pieces of scrap metal struck the commercial company’s truck driver and causing him injury. After the injury, the commercial truck driver notified the business that he was filing a lawsuit for injuries and damages.

Following the notification of a lawsuit, the business notified their Bronx insurance company. The business’ insurance company then notified the insurance company for the commercial motor vehicle that the victim had been driving. They maintained that the loading of the commercial truck was covered under the motor vehicle policy that was under their jurisdiction. Therefore, the insurance company that was responsible for the damages should be the insurance company that covered the truck. The insurance company that covered the truck disagreed. They felt that it was the responsibility of the insurance company that covered the business, their property, and the actions of their employees. The insurance company for the truck was not notified of the truck accident until eight months after the accident in December of 1964.

The insurance company for the truck applied to the court for a motion of summary judgment on the contention that the insurance company for the business had failed, as a matter of law, to comply with the notice provisions of the insurance company for the truck’s policy. The notice of accident as it applies to that policy states:

‘When an accident occurs written notice shall be given by or on behalf of the insured to the company or any of its authorized agents as soon as practicable. Such notice shall contain particulars sufficient to identify the insured and also reasonably obtainable information respecting the time, place, and circumstances of the accident, the names, and addresses of the injured and of available witnesses.’

The policy also states that “no action shall lie against the company unless, as a condition precedent thereto, the insured shall have fully complied with all the terms of this policy. In short, the insurance company for the truck claims that by notifying the company eight months after the accident, it is not timely as a matter of law and so by reason of the policy, they are not liable. The court maintains that “to grant summary judgment it must clearly appear that no material and triable issue of fact is presented.” (Di Menna & Sons v. City of New York, 301 N.Y. 118, 92 N.E.2d 918). The court maintains that summary judgment should not be granted where there is any doubt as to the existence of triable fact.

The question involved here being if eight months was short enough of a time period to be considered timely under the insurance company for the truck’s policy. The court maintained that following much discussion of timeliness as defined in numerous other cases, that the insurance company for the business should be held to the same responsibility of timely notification that it demands of its own insured’s and that they should be considered co-carriers and not a separate insured person themselves. The court also feels that it is unreasonable in this day and age of ease of information to believe that the business’ insurance company could not have found out what information it was seeking.

In response, the court finds that timely notice was not given and wrote:

‘The finding of the trial court that notice of the accident was given by the representative of third party plaintiff to third party defendant ‘as soon as practicable’ as required by the policy provision is contrary to the proof. Such representative did not use due diligence in 1960 to ascertain the name of the insurance carrier affording coverage to the truck being unloaded at the time of the accident by plaintiff in the main action. Proof of financial security must be furnished contemporaneously with the registration of a motor vehicle (Vehicle & Traffic Law § 312) and any person may obtain a copy of the certificate of insurance from the Department of Motor Vehicles upon payment of the legal fee (Cf. 1942 Op.Atty.Gen. 194). The lack of diligence on the part of the representative of third party plaintiff is emphasized by the alacrity with which the required information was obtained and notice given to third party defendant some two years later when the main action was commenced.'

The court asks if there were any extenuating circumstances that would have prevented the business’ insurance company from giving written notice to the insurance company for the commercial motor vehicle. The answer was that there was not. The insurance company for the business had knowledge of the accident on May 12, 1964 only four days after the accident. The court feels that because the business’ insurance company is an insurance company, they should have known that the insurance company for the commercial motor vehicle was in play. The court then feels that it would only have been appropriate for one insurance company to provide the other insurance company with timely notification.

Because the insurance company for the commercial motor vehicle was not notified by the business’ insurance company in a timely manner, the court decided to grant the motion for summary judgment dismissing the motion of the business’ insurance company that the insurance company for the commercial motor vehicle is responsible to cover the lawsuit. The court finds that since insurance company for the commercial motor vehicle was not notified in a timely manner by the other insurance company, it cannot be found responsible and is relieved of liability. That being said, the court finds that there is no reason to determine if one insurance company should be considered primary and the other secondary. There is only one company that is liable; the company that represents the business where the incident occurred.

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December 4, 2012

A man was sitting in his truck at a stop light when he was struck in the rear

A man was sitting in his truck at a stop light when he was struck in the rear by a commercial rental truck causing substantial injury to his vehicle and to him. He and his wife filed a lawsuit against the driver of the rental truck, the business that hired him, and the rental company that leased him the vehicle.

The Long Island rental company appealed the Supreme Court’s first decision because they should not have included it in the issue at all. They advised that they hold no liability in the course of this accident because all they did was lease the truck and that the truck had been maintained in good working order. They advised that there was nothing wrong with the truck or the truck’s brakes which would cause it to strike the vehicle in front of it without driver error.

The driver of the rental truck had made a deposition earlier in which he had agreed that there was nothing wrong with the rental truck or its brakes and that the accident was driver error. The Westchester driver was using the rental truck in the course of his business and was working for that business at the time of the accident. The business concurred that he was working for them and that it was their business.

The rental truck company moved for summary judgment based on the Graves Amendment (see 49 USC §30106), “it could not be held vicariously liable for the accident. . . .(because) pursuant to the Graves Amendment, generally, the owner of a leased or rented motor vehicle cannot be held liable for personal injuries resulting from the use of such vehicle if: (1) the owner is engaged in the trade or business of renting or leasing motor vehicles, and (2) there is no negligence or criminal wrongdoing on the part of the owner.” In this case, there was clearly no negligence or criminal wrongdoing on the part of the rental car company in that the vehicle had been maintained in good working order. The accident was admittedly driver error.

The Supreme Court ruled that the summary judgment on the issue of liability as it related to the rental car company needed to be dismissed. That based on the evidence and the law, they could not be held liable in this case.

As far as the liability goes, the law is clear that a rear-end collision establishes a prima facie case of negligence on behalf of the driver of that vehicle.

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December 2, 2012

On July 27, 2007, an employee for a water pollution control plant in Brooklyn, New York was at work in an area that was under construction to upgrade the facility

On July 27, 2007, an employee for a water pollution control plant in Brooklyn, New York was at work in an area that was under construction to upgrade the facility. Part of the employee’s job was to provide identification checks on all persons working on the site to ensure that they were members of the Teamsters Union. The water pollution control plant provided him with a Chevrolet Silverado work truck to use while he was performing his duties. On this date while he was pulling up to park the truck, he observed another truck pull in and turn down a temporary road. The employee advised that he got out of his truck to walk down the road to check the man’s union card because it was a nice day. When he got out of his work truck, he stepped onto a temporary ramp that was set up by some of the construction workers on the site. The ramp was constructed of two by four pieces of wood. When he stepped on it, the boards separated and he fell approx. 18 inches to the ground breaking several bones in his foot. He filed a lawsuit to gain compensation for his injuries.

The employee stated in his suit that he felt that the water treatment plant was responsible for paying for his injury because they either knew or should have known that the ramp was in use on their property and that the ramp was not safe. The company disagreed. They felt that they did not install the ramp and that they did not know that it was in use. They did not feel that they should be held responsible for his injury because he was injured by his own fault because he was using the two by fours to walk on. The water treatment plant requested a summary judgment to dismiss all liability against them.

The court disagreed. They stated that the employees’ injuries came from an unsafe condition that was present at the construction site, i.e. the faulty ramp of two-by-fours which collapsed. The question of law is if the plant had actual or constructive notice of the condition of the ramp being used on the premises. The employee does not dispute that the water treatment plant did not build the ramp itself, only that they knew that it was there and did nothing to either make it safe or remove it.

The court finds that there is enough evidence that they may have known that the ramp existed that the case needs to go to trial and that they will not make a summary judgment in this case.

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November 29, 2012

In March of 1974, the Supreme Court Appellate Division, First Department heard an appeal in reference to a commercial truck accident

In March of 1974, the Supreme Court Appellate Division, First Department heard an appeal in reference to a commercial truck accident. The commercial truck was accused of being illegally double parked on the side of a one way street in New York City. An eight year old girl was playing on the sidewalk and darted out into the roadway. She was struck by a passenger car that was driving down the roadway. She stated that she had not been able to see the car coming because her line of vision was blocked by the commercial oil tanker truck. Her account of the incident was corroborated by seven witnesses and her brother in law. The witnesses were playmates and neighbors. The oil tanker company stated that they did not have a truck there at that time on that date. The driver for the oil tanker company who normally works that area stated that he was not on that street on that date.

The Queens police officer who was first on the scene, pulled up behind the passenger car that hit the child, and blocked the roadway. The detective that responded to the scene took copious measurements and drew a detailed crime scene sketch which was later copied onto a more formal diagram. Even though he did not copy all of the measurements that he originally made onto the final formal diagram, those that were on the diagram were exactly the same as the ones that he had on his informal sketch. The measurements that the officer took show that the collision occurred within 15 feet of the sidewalk. A normal lane of traffic is 12 feet. The information on the measurements with the vehicle in place and the skid marks on the roadway, clearly show that there was no room for a commercial vehicle to be double parked on the roadway. If a vehicle of any size had been located where the witnesses claimed the vehicle was located, it would have been struck by the passenger car as it swerved to the left in an attempt to avoid the child. However, even if the truck had been there, it would have had no bearing on the accident itself.

The Staten Island child darted out in to traffic in the middle of the block. The child was not in a crosswalk and had no legal reason to be in the roadway at that particular spot. The question of liability in this case which was brought up in court was misleading at best. In the original trial, there was a tremendous amount of time and testimony given to the issue of the commercial oil tanker truck. So much testimony was given to the issue of the commercial vehicle, that negligence of the passenger car driver who struck the child took second place. In fact, the Supreme Court stated that the issue became so blurred as it concerned the commercial vehicle, that it was impossible to determine if the driver who struck the child was guilty of any negligence at all. The Supreme Court decided that the only issue that should have been dealt with in the first trial should have been the negligence or lack thereof in the case of the passenger car driver who actually struck the child. The Supreme Court further stated that it did not matter if the truck was there or not since the child was not in a crosswalk, the responsibility to cross the road safely fell entirely to her. The Court felt that even at eight years of age, she had the responsibility to look both ways and to ensure that she was able to cross the road in safety. Further, since the girl came off the curb and out into the roadway from between two parked vehicles, the court feels that it is possible that there was no fault at all on the part of the passenger car driver that hit her. A person darting out into traffic is not given the right of way in the roadway. In this case, the passenger car had the right of way when she entered the roadway. Only by showing some form of negligence on the part of the driver of the passenger car, can the child or the child’s parents as the case may be put liability on someone else. In other words, the driver of the car that hit the child would have to have been speeding, making an illegal lane change, losing control of his vehicle, or going the wrong way on the one way street in order for the accident to have been his fault. Since none of the above situations were shown, then it is doubtful that the driver of the passenger car is at fault in this accident.

In spite of all of this, the court is concerned that the question of negligence on the part of the driver of the passenger car did not get the attention that it deserved in the first trial of this case. There was overwhelming physical evidence on the scene and presented in court that the commercial oil tanker truck was not there. The transcript of the appeal states that, “Respecting the time-honored axiom that a jury’s judgment as to the facts is all but sacrosanct, the evidence of plaintiff and the non-blotter witnesses is more than countervailed by the physical principle that two bodies cannot occupy the same space simultaneously.”

The Supreme Court further stated that as to the driver of the passenger car, the only evidence of failure to control his vehicle is that he did hit the child with it. The Court states that this might have been enough of a foundation for the jury to find him liable if not for the clouding of the issue by the topic of the commercial oil truck.

Because of this, the court ruled to overturn the original verdict in this case and to order a new trial on the clear issue of negligence, uncomplicated by the issue of if a commercial truck was there or not.

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November 24, 2012

On September 30, 2011, a woman submitted a charge against Nassau County

On September 30, 2011, a woman submitted a charge against Nassau County for negligence in conducting its sanding/salting operations. She alleged that the operations were done in an unsafe manner, therefore causing the truck accident that injured her.

According to reports, County truck number 3124 was removing snow and salting the streets in Hempstead, New York. The woman said that she was standing between two parked cars in the street when suddenly, the truck threw a "metal projectile" that hit her left hand and forehad. During the hearing, both parties referred to the "metal projectile" as a reinforcement bar.

Because of the injuries she sustained, the woman charged Nassau County with negligence. The County then submitted a motion to the Court for a summary judgment to dismiss the woman's complaint. To support this, the County brought forth as a witness the Equipment Supervisor and Acting Highway Maintenance Supervisor of the Hempstead Garage. The Supervisor had been an Equipment Operator before and had sanded, salted, and plowed the town roads. He said that although clogs sometimes occur in the opening to the funnel where the salt leaves the vehicle, the clogs are just frozen chunks of salt. He also said that there was never a time when a driver had reported a clog in the funnel from that wasn't frozen salt. After seeing the piece of metal that hit the woman and injured her, he said that it looked like a reinforcement bar used in construction. However, it did not resemble any of the truck parts and he had no idea where it came from.

During the hearing, the Suffolk woman mentioned that there were other cars traveling down the road and on the other side of the street. She said that she was shielding her eyes from the sand when she saw the truck pass by. Because her eyes were closed when the truck accident happened, she only saw the piece of metal after. She did not see it come from the truck.

When a motion for summary judgment is submitted, the Court determines whether or not there is an important factual issue that should be resolved. The party submitting the motion is required to show that it has a right to summary judgment. In this case, the County was able to show this by demonstrating that the truck was not malfunctioning and therefore could not have thrown off the metal reinforcement bar that hit the woman.

The Court also finds that the woman's arguments are weak. She said that the truck had a history of mechanical issues and that the County was negligent because it did not screen the salt before using it. However, she could not prove that the bar was seen in the salt before the accident, or that screening the salt before using it was required. Also, although part of the truck had been repaired a few weeks before the incident, there was no evidence that something was wrong with it.

The Law states that the liability for the owners or operators of "hazard vehicles" which do highway work only apply in situations where they recklessly ignored the safety of others. In this case, the County was able to prove that it did not operate the vehicle in a reckless way and without considering the safety of others.

When there are no factual issues to be resolved, and where the party which moves for a summary judgment shows that it has a right to receive that judgment, the Court will grant it. Therefore, the Court granted a summary judgment in favor of Nassau County.

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November 22, 2012

This is a summary of the decision of the Supreme Court of the State of New York

This is a summary of the decision of the Supreme Court of the State of New York in Nassau County on a motion for summary judgment submitted by BNJ Granite/Cabinets last March 7, 2011. BNJ Granite/Cabinets and Innovative Stone were charged with negligence and failing to provide its employees with a safe work site and working conditions. This negligence was alleged to be the cause of the truck accident in which Michael Tyson was injured.

On January 12, 2009, Michael Tyson of the Bronx was injured as he was working in BNJ Granite's granite manufacturing business site in Holbrook, New York. Tyson was hired by Innovative Stone to transport two slabs of granite, around 6 feet by 10 feet and weighing 900 pounds, in his truck. The slabs were to be placed on the flatbed of his truck with an A-frame support to hold the slabs in place. The A-frame was assembled by two BNJ Granite employees. The slabs would be then be lifted by a forklift onto the truck and into the frame.

One of the BNJ employees, under Tyson's guidance, lifted the first granite slab and positioned it on the surface of the truck. He did the same with the second slab when suddenly, it fell from the A-frame into where Tyson was. Tyson had been laying wooden planks on the truck's base to cushion the granite and prevent it from breaking. The slab landed on both his legs and crushed them. He had to have three surgeries and both legs amputated.

According to BNJ granite, because Tyson was directly involved in loading the slab onto the truck and in guiding the direction of the second slab, he was liable for the truck accident. Tyson argued that in the testimony of the employee who had controlled the forklift, he was not sure if the slab was positioned correctly when he lowered it onto the A-frame. Therefore, since there was a possibility of BNJ's employee being the cause of the accident, BNJ Granite was not entitled to move for summary judgment. The Court also finds that even though Tyson could have contributed to the accident, there was an element of comparative negligence and BNJ cannot be found completely innocent.

The party which submits the motion for summary judgment must establish first that it is entitled to judgment and must offer enough evidence to show that there are no unresolved factual issues in the case. The other party must then provide evidence that there are still unresolved factual issues.

Now, let's discuss the main charge against BNJ Granite of Brooklyn. An individual suing for common-law negligence must prove that there is a duty owed by the defendant against him, that there was a breach of that duty, and that that breach caused the injury. In order to see whether the defendant has a duty against the prosecutor, the court checks whether the relationship gives rise to a duty of care and whether the harm could have been foreseen.

Even where there is no original duty, if the defendant performs an act for the benefit of the prosecutor, it must be done carefully and with the safety of the prosecutor in mind. In this case, even though there was no original duty owed to him by BNJ Granite, the company loaded the granite onto the truck for Tyson's benefit. Its employee was aware that Tyson was at the back of the truck and should have been more careful in loading the slabs, considering their size and weight.

Now that BNJ Granite's duty to Tyson has been established, it must show that the breach of this duty was not the direct cause of the truck accident that led to Tyson's injuries. In this matter however there are triable issues as to whether the employee was negligent in loading the slab and whether this negligence caused the accident. Because the accident happened very quickly, neither the employee nor Tyson remembered the facts and circumstances surrounding it. In instances like this, the truth of the issues are usually determined through a trial and cannot be decided on in a summary judgment. The Court therefore denied BNJ's Granite motion for a summary judgment.

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November 20, 2012

The bus companies denied liability

One day in July, a the driver of a truck owned by a car leasing company, and leased to a delivery company experienced recurrence of a mechanical problem with the truck in which the accelerator pedal occasionally sticks, does not elevate automatically when the driver's foot is off it, and which the driver is able to correct only by tapping the pedal with his foot. The driver called the mechanics responsible for the maintenance of the truck who instructed him to drive the truck back into Manhattan.

In the afternoon, the truck was travelling westbound on the Long Island Expressway when the pedal stuck again as the truck was descending an incline. At that point the Expressway curved slightly to the left. The driver looked at the pedal for a moment, during which period the truck swerved on to the shoulder of the Expressway, striking two parked buses. A passenger in the bus suffered very severe injuries to his legs.

The passenger filed an action for damages against the truck driver and the bus companies. The bus companies denied liability arguing that the buses were not the proximate causes of the injuries sustained by the passenger.

The court pointed out that City of New York's Vehicle and Traffic Law provides that, except when necessary to avoid conflict with other traffic, or in compliance with law or the directions of a police officer or official traffic-control device, no person shall stop, stand or park a vehicle on a state expressway highway or state interstate route highway, including the entrances thereto and exits therefrom which are a part thereof, except in an emergency.

Likewise, the Traffic Regulations provides that stopping or parking or operation of a motor vehicle is prohibited on the berm or shoulder adjacent to a parkway or an expressway except for emergency purposes.

The court ruled that, in this case, the facts point out that the negligence of the bus owners was a substantial cause of the injuries sustained by the bus passenger. The court explained that negligence of the bus owners was closely, indeed immediately, connected in time and space to the injuries sustained by the bus passenger. The court pointed out that the statute and the regulation create a legal relationship between the operators of the bus and other vehicular traffic. The statute and the regulation were designed with an awareness that from time to time vehicles on high speed state highways go on to the shoulder under circumstances that make the presence of standing or parked vehicles a source of danger. It does not matter whether the truck driver in this case intended to go on to the shoulder because of mechanical failure, or to avoid another vehicle, or whether the truck did so because a steering wheel malfunctioned or as a result of driving error.

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November 13, 2012

New York's Labor Law or common law negligence

A case was filed raising the issue of whether the collapse of forms used for framing poured concrete foundations, stacked on top of a flatbed truck that killed a 40-year old man falls within the provisions of the New York City's Labor Law or common law negligence.

One day in March of 2006, the man was fatally injured while standing on a flatbed truck when a bundle of concrete forms lying on the floor of the truck fell on him, causing him to fall to the ground below. The decedent was employed by a subcontractor to the owner of the premises where the accident happened. The subcontractor was to perform demolition, excavation, and foundation work in the construction of house.

The project where the demolition was done called for the construction of several three-family and two-family homes. The decedent had been working on the site loading concrete forms onto a flatbed truck. The forms were used in pouring the concrete foundation and were then removed. The forms were then stacked in groups of fifteen, bound together, and lifted by a Caterpillar 320 machine out of the foundation hole and onto the flatbed truck. There were six bundles of concrete forms that had to be lifted. Each bundle contained 15 concrete forms that were tied with two metal straps on each side. The truck accident occurred with the fourth bundle.

The Westchester contractor denied liability to the decedent under the Labor Law asserting that it was not an "owner," "contractor," or "agent" of the owner or general contractor at the time of the accident. Since it was undisputed that the contractor was the owner nor general contractor on the subject construction project, the only issue remaining is whether it was a statutory agent of the owner or general contractor.

The court explained that an entity is deemed a contractor within the meaning of Labor Law if it had the power to enforce safety standards and choose responsible subcontractors. Therefore, to impose liability, the defendant must have the authority to control the activity bringing about the injury so as to enable it to avoid or correct the unsafe condition. To recover under Labor Law, a plaintiff must establish the violation of an Industrial Code provision, which sets forth specific, applicable safety standards, in connection with construction, demolition, or excavation work.

An employee of the contractor testified that the owner of the building hired all of the subcontractors to perform work on the subject construction project, and the contractor did not exercise any supervision or control over the work performed by the decedent and had no authority to do so. The court also found that there was no violation of any Industrial Code provision by the subcontractor because court testimonies showed that the decedent was not working in an area that is considered hazardous.

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November 11, 2012

In the morning of October in 1969, a 40-year old woman was involved in a car accident

In the morning of October in 1969, a 40-year old woman was involved in a car accident and sustained serious personal injuries while operating her automobile eastbound on New York State Route 17. According to sources, the automobile struck a cement brick located on the roadway.

The Staten Island woman filed an action against a company manufacturing split limestone alleging that it had negligently loaded concrete building blocks upon a truck that it owned or controlled, with the result that one or more of these blocks fell on to the pavement of Route 17 and caused the unfortunate automobile accident. The manufacturing company has a policy of liability insurance.

An investigation on the accident was held and showed that prior to the day of the accident, the truck, while heading eastbound on Route 17, broke down a short distance to the east of Binghamton on Route 17. The truck was carrying split limestone, for delivery. The truck was towed to another location and the manufacturer borrowed another truck from a car leasing company. The borrowed truck was the one involved in the accident. The borrowed truck was also insured.

The Manhattan insurance company denied liability and alleged that the borrowed truck had not passed the scene of the accident until after the accident had occurred. However, the investigation on the part of the woman showed that the borrowed truck, loaded with split limestone, passed the scene of the Truck accident before its occurrence.

An action was also filed against the insurance company of the truck involved in the accident. However, the truck's insurance company asked the court to dismiss the complaint saying it did not know or was not notified of the accident or the facts of the accident. The woman also said she did not know that the truck was insured.

The court found that the woman, being primarily involved in the accident, had the responsibility to inquire as to the existence of insurance coverage as soon as she knew that the truck involved in the truck accident was insured. The court ruled that the woman cannot be excused for failing to know that if any truck under the control of the manufacturing company was involved in the accident, it had to be the truck borrowed from a leasing company. The woman's failure to notify the leasing company and its insurer of their potential liability so they could conduct their own investigation until almost 13 months later constitutes a violation of the notice conditions of the policy as matter of law.

The court pointed out that an insurance policy requirement that notice be given as soon as practicable requires that notice be given within a reasonable time, and failure to give such notice, it is well settled, vitiates the contracts as to both the insured and the party recovering a judgment against the insured.

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November 8, 2012

A personal injury action was filed stemming from an accident

A personal injury action was filed stemming from an accident in Nassau, in which a 30-year old man, during his employ as a groundskeeper with a school district, severed a portion of his left ring finger when the tailgate portion of a dump body installed on a 1996 Ford F-350 dump truck dropped on his finger.

The groundskeeper related that in the spring of 2003, he noticed that the tailgate of truck 23 began to swing back and forth and he could hear it banging as he drove the truck. He said the tailgate was popping off while he was driving, and the bottom part of the tailgate used to come out of the section that was clamped to hold it together. He also testified that, from the spring of 2004 until the day of his truck accident in April 2005, the tailgate fell off the truck on a daily basis and that he complained to school personnel about said situation, but nothing was done to remedy the alleged problem.

One of the third-party defendants wanted the claims of strict products liability dismissed because the facts show that the tailgate at issue was damaged prior to the groundskeeper's accident and was subsequently profoundly modified and altered as a result of that damage thereby resulting in his injuries. That defendant also said that there was no evidence establishing a manufacturing or design defect in the tailgate.

Further, that Queens defendant pointed out that the groundskeeper worked with the truck on a daily basis from 1996 until his accident in 2005 and that he worked on the truck and with its tailgate for seven or eight years before he first complained about the tailgate.

In this case, the court found that the third-party defendant failed to submit proof establishing that the groundskeeper's injuries were not caused by a manufacturing defect in the tailgate of the truck. The court said the defendant could have shown this by submitting direct evidence of tests, mechanical processes and inspections, instead of relying solely on the testimony of a person.

The Court pointed out that there was conflicting evidence presented regarding when the repairs as a result of the commercial truck accident were performed. The testimonies of various witnesses presented in court did not point out whether or not the additional accident occurred before or after the groundskeeper's accident.

As the third-party defendant relied heavily in its argument that it is clear that it cannot be liable for injuries stemming from the performance of a tailgate that, in the wake of the tailgate accident and subsequent repairs, was so profoundly modified and altered before the accident as to simply cease.

Based on the evidence presented and the testimonies of witnesses, the court directed the third-party defendant to pay for the injuries sustained by the groundskeeper.

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October 22, 2012

Dump Truck Runs Red Light and Hits Jeep

Local police accused a dump truck driver of careless driving. The allegations were placed against the Highland Lakes man when he ran a red light and subsequently hit a black jeep, being driven by a 53-year-old man.

The responding police sergeant and patrolman found that both drivers, thankfully, escaped injury.

Traffic was backed up in both directions while the lane was shut down to clean up fuel in the roadway.

The fuel was in the roadway because the dump truck’s fuel tank was damaged causing diesel fuel to pour out onto the ground and into storm drains. The Riverdale Volunteer Fire Department, New Jersey Department of Transportation and Morri County Hazardous Waste experts were on hand and involved in the cleanup process.

The 51-year-old dump truck driver was found to have ignored the red light and charged with careless driving, improper maintenance of headlights and damaged mud flaps.
The truck is owned by Mal Brothers Transportation of Wayne.

Extensive damage to vehicles meant that both the dump truck and the Jeep had to be towed.
A source reveals that running red lights is, obviously, one of the top causes of vehicle collisions. These types of truck accidents are more likely than any other type of crash to result in some degree of injury. They result in almost 1,000 wrongful death suits and about 90,000 personal injury cases.

When choosing to run a red light, a driver is saying that their time on the road is more important than the others and they are also admitting that they think everyone should be watching out for them and not vice versa.

Safe drivers in The Bronx and Brooklyn know that the proper attitude to have while driving is one of defense, obeying all traffic laws, all posted limits and restrictions and watching out for changes in the environment. A policeman says, “The safest driving attitude is not one that says, ‘I must do this and go there - now.’ It is one of ‘what’s the right and respectful way to drive to my destination?’”

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October 20, 2012

Fuel Leak When Semi Truck Crashes

Oil and diesel fuel were spilled in a semi-truck accident in July of 2000 on Highway 195 near Pullman. The 50-year-old driver was injured.

The man, who was driving a 1998 International semi-tractor trailer, had to receive stitches to bind up a cut to his head and was admitted to the Pullman Memorial Hospital for overnight observation. A source says it is common when certain signs are present to hold a patient overnight to ensure no further damage was done to the brain or other parts of the body.

According to a state patrol trooper in Nassau, the driver was looking at a map when the truck went off the side of the road and into a ditch where it hit a plow.

The truck was hauling about 15,000 pounds of oil in barrels and smaller quart containers. 45,000 pounds had been unloaded earlier that morning.

Suffolk Officials with the Department of Ecology environmental hazard team responded to the request to check out the damage at the scene of the truck accident. Much of the oil cargo and the diesel’s own fuel had spilled into a farm’s irrigation waterway that was next to the road. The oil and fuel were also soaking into the dirt.

The truck, which was a conventional tractor with sleeper cab, was torn from the frame and destroyed in the wreckage.

The truck driver was charged with negligent driving. The Department of Ecology threatened him with a fine as well.

A witness says that a diesel fuel spill quickly dissipates, so that was not the most serious ecological damage done in the wreck. The oil, however, is known to stick to everything it comes in contact with. “Hopefully, the cleanup process was quick and did not leave the farmer’s land too badly damaged,” the Lawyer reported.

Whatever the extent of the long-term damage was, the farmer can reasonably sue the truck driver or his insurance carrier for loss of his equipment and possibly earnings from his crop. Hopefully, he sought out competent legal aid.

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September 24, 2012

76-year-old Milk Truck Driver Dead after Driving off the Road

A tanker truck almost completely full of milk drove straight off the road when attempting a curve along Route 19 in Bergen, New York, Tuesday.

The 76-year-old driver from Perry in Wyoming County died in the crash. He was driving the milk delivery truck for a local milk delivery company.

A state police sergeant said the road was wet. “If you make even the slightest mistake you get off that soft shoulder; it’s pretty unforgiving.” A cop pointed out that the shifting load of milk would have made recovering from a mistake that much more difficult.

When the driver couldn’t recover, the truck flipped. He was crushed to death inside the cab.
A local resident heard the wreck. He said, “Girlfriend said it sounded like thunder, and I said, ‘No, that’s a heavy crash.’” When he went outside, his suspicions were found to be true.
Local authorities think the truck went right through the bend in the road without slowing down or trying to turn the wheel at all.

The resident said that he remembers other truck wrecks in the same general area as this most recent one. “People have a habit there; it's not the first fatality right within 20 feet of where he is. They have a tendency to roll that curve fast."

The accident is still under investigation. Authorities were trying to discern if the driver had a medical condition that may have affected his ability to compensate for road conditions and contributed to the crash.

Attorneys with a Law Office reveal another possible cause of the accident: falling asleep at the wheel. The United States Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) estimates that somewhere around 100,000 collisions reported to police are caused by drowsiness or fatigue. Of that number, it’s estimated that as many as 1,500 fatalities and 71,000 injuries occur.

An astronomical number, but it is not as large as one would think when comparing that number with how many drivers report falling asleep. A Farmers Insurance study in Long Island reveals that more than 10 percent of drivers admit to having fallen asleep behind the wheel and more than 20 percent say they have momentarily dozed while driving.

These are shocking statistics, especially considering that a bit more than 193,552,000 people have driver’s licenses in the U.S.

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September 21, 2012

Congressional Legislation Aimed at Freezing Semi Weight and Length

Current proposals in the House and Senate would continue the freeze on national truck size and weight limits on Federal-aid highways. The sizes would be stuck at 53 feet and 80,000 pounds if the legislation passes.

A source says, “The bills would improve safety and prevent the excessive degradation of roadways, tunnels, and bridges.” The proposed Senate bill, called Safe Highways and Infrastructure Preservation Act of 2011, is expected to extend the present weight limit and freeze on triple-trailers. This would be applicable on all 160,000 miles of the National Highway System.

“This legislation needs to be passed to prevent serious injuries and deaths,” a New York City Attorney specializing in Truck Accidents reports.

In fact, many in the public agree and think that any legislation taken to improve the safety of the nation’s roadways is a welcome improvement. Too many families in the nation have suffered the loss of health or life in accidents associated with tractor trailers.

One recent court case awarded a family a $2.4 million in a wrongful death suit brought against a truck driver and his company when the truck driver forgot what length trailer he was pulling and killed a bicyclist.

The Westchester bicyclist was run over by the rear wheels of the trailer as it made a right turn.

The investigating officers on the scene pronounced that the bicyclist was at fault. The family’s attorney, however, conducted an independent investigation. He hired accident reconstruction experts to look for valuable clues as to who was really at fault. The experts found two key pieces of evidence. Apparently, the driver failed to monitor his right mirrors during his turn, and because of this, he thought he was pulling a 48-foot trailer instead of the 53 footer he was actually hauling.

The trucking industry has totaled more than $600 billion annually since 2004, and that number is projected to continue increasing. As a business, it’s understandable that they want to make a profit. But if companies are left to decide on their own weight restrictions and size, the opportunity to make more profit will lead many of them to make the wrong choices. Some of the companies will invariably choose unsafe payloads.

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September 12, 2012

Truck carrying Prison Food Involved in Accident

According to police reports obtained by a reporter, a prison food truck was involved in a traffic accident. The truck was transporting food to the prison located in Texas. However, on the way, the truck was struck by a train. This not only put the driver’s life at risk, but also meant that thousands of customers went without food.

The truck accident happened at around 10 am in the morning near to the Texas Department of Criminal Justice on Highway 90. When the truck turned into the prison unit the train hit it.
The train was travelling at high speed which meant that it carried on for almost 100 yards before it was able to come to a complete stop. The truck was severely damaged and there was still a piece of the truck attached to the train. It was very lucky that nobody was injured or killed in the accident.

This has delayed the prisoners in receiving their food, but as many posters on the internet point out there are more important things in the world than hungry prisoners. The delays were only minor, and as the prison had enough stocks of food for a few days, the prisoners never actually went hungry.

The police reports read by the rep states that there were cans of food which were spread all over the platform. There were also pieces of the truck spread over the area. As many of the cans were undamaged they could be salvaged and reused. This made it possible for the prison service to save money without needing to buy extra food for the prisoners again.

Recovery services arrived quickly to clear the truck from the tracks. As a high speed train was involved in the accident, train maintenance officials were called to the scene. They needed to check that the train was correctly on the rails before it could be moved. The train could then be moved safely out of the way of the crossing so that other vehicles could use the road again.

In Staten Island and Queens, accidents like this are rare.

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September 1, 2012

Accident Involving Ammunition Truck Closes I-40

A traffic incident involving an ammunition truck was very worrying for onlookers, observed a witness. The accident resulted in the road at the Fort Smith Junction to be closed for most of the day on Wednesday.

The truck which was carrying around 28,000 lbs. of explosives was involved in a dangerous traffic accident which put many lives at risk. The explosives were being transported from the McAlester Army Ammunition Plant.

Police were first called to the scene of the accident. However, as the police explain, the accident was much more serious than most. The accident involved a fairly large quantity of explosives. For this reason a specialist team needed to travel from Fort Sill in order to take a look at the load and make sure that it was safe.

When dealing with such a large quantity of explosives it is vital to make sure the public is completely safe. While this did cause quite long delays for drivers wanting to use the interstate, it was essential. It simply wasn’t worth the risk to quickly and hastily move the vehicle carrying the explosives. If this exploded then it could cause lots of damage, including a possibility of a loss of human life.

The whole of the westbound carriageway of interstate 40 was shut down while police and specialists dealt with the truck and explosives onboard. This caused the traffic on the interstate to backup for over a mile, said the police. This created a gridlock which affected the interstate for more than three hours.

For safety, the airspace around the site of the truck accident was cleared and closed. It was only opened again when they could be sure that there was no risk of the explosives blowing up. The police always take lots of precautions when dealing with accidents which involve explosives.

After a wait of around four hours the military managed to make the load of explosives safe and moved the truck out of the way. When the accident was completely cleared, the interstate was opened. Traffic was able to travel along the interstate 40 again on late Wednesday afternoon. The Bronx and Brooklyn rarely experience accidents like this.

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August 30, 2012

Interstate 65 reopened after Accident

Police reopened the northbound lanes of Interstate 65 after a truck accident which affected a semi-truck, explains a witness. The trailer was thought to be carrying hazardous materials which caused concern for the cleanup operation. This also complicated the process of reopening the road.

The crash happened at about 3 o’clock in the early hours of the morning. This was around a mile south of the exit for Indiana 38. This caused large delays for anyone traveling along Interstate 65 as traffic quickly stated to back up.

The accident blocked all the lanes of the highway which caused police to divert traffic. The traffic was taken off the highway to get around the site of the accident, mentions the police. Then the traffic could be diverted back onto the highway after the accident.

The road remained closed for five hours. Normally roads are opened quicker than this after an accident; however, the hazardous materials complicated the cleanup. Specialist cleanup teams were needed to check the state of the truck and to ensure that it was safe to be moved without spilling the load.

The semi-truck contained a large quantity of bleach and ammonia. This crashed into a barrier for road construction workers in the early hours of the morning. The driver’s identity has not yet been released. However, we are told that the driver of the semi-truck has not been injured and only required minor treatment.

The bleach and ammonia only leaked inside the truck. Fortunately none spilled out onto the road. If it did spill onto the road then it would have been even more difficult to clean up and open the road. This would have resulted in even longer delays while cleanup teams worked to clean the road.

This week was not a good week for motorists. A crash happened in Staten Island and Westchester at around 7:30 am which also caused traffic to slow down. The local police department rushed to the scene of the truck accident but said that there were no injuries. However, road closers resulted in substantial delays for any motorists traveling along affected routes.

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August 24, 2012

Road Rage Caused Crash

According to an Idaho police report obtained by a source, the possible reason for an accident is due to road rage. Aggressive driving is thought to be the reason why an accident which involved four cars and a dump truck on interstate 84 occurred. Interstate 84 was gridlocked for hours as a result of the truck accident.

The report explains that this accident snowballed and created a chain reaction. This meant that different members of the emergency services needed to work together. Motorcycle police controlled the traffic and various ISP officers needed to investigate the accident scene.

When the VW stopped, the dump truck attempted to swerve out of the way of it and tipped over through the barrier. According to eye witness reports, the truck spilt the entire load of a tone of gravel over the road at around 2:30 PM. The driver of the truck received only minor injuries.

The VW car also hut another mid-sized pickup truck which was traveling west on Interstate 84. This caused the truck to spin out next to a highway divider. Reports from other drivers explain that they believe the driver was driving aggressively. The driver is said to of been agitated by something when passing the truck.

Police questioned the driver of the Volkswagen Bug. However she was not available to give any interviews to the press. It is thought that driver error and unsafe driving are to blame for this accident.

The police investigation is currently ongoing. It is said that the police currently do not have enough evidence to prove that road rage was to blame. The police will try to hear from more drivers and witnesses so that they can learn exactly what happened.

Road rage is thought to cause many accidents in Westchester and Staten Island each year. If you are ever involved in a road rage incident then you just need to ignore it and get out of the way. There’s no point getting angry as well because this increases the risk that you will also be involved in the truck accident.

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July 26, 2012

One Person Dead in Car Accident which Flips Cement Truck

A man driving a Suzuki attempted to reverse across four lanes of traffic. The car crossed the path of a cement truck which caused the truck to flip over. As a result of this the cement was spilled over the road.

The accident occurred on the northbound carriageway of Interstate 5 in Nassau, just south of the on-ramp for Palm Avenue. The driver of the Suzuki car hid the cement truck at around 1:30 in the early hours of this morning, according to reports obtained by the police.

This accident had a serious impact on traffic as the road was blocked for many hours. The driver of the cement truck was a 43 year old man traveling at around 50 miles per hour. The Suzuki driver reversed backwards across all of the lanes and struck the cement truck.

The exact reasons why a driver would try to reverse on a highway are not known. However, it has been speculated that the driver had missed his exit and decided that it was a fairly good idea to reverse so that he could try and get off again.

The accident caused the cement truck to turn over which then spilt cement over the whole road. This made cleaning up the debris from the accident very difficult.

The cement truck was also blocking the second, third and fourth lanes of the interstate. It’s estimated that an area of 7.5 yards was covered in cement from the truck. Before the road could be opened, not only would the truck have to be moved, but also the cement would have to be cleaned from the surface of the road.

The driver of the Suzuki from Suffolk was pronounced dead by the time the emergency services responded. The driver of the cement truck was unharmed by the accident as it’s a much stronger and more substantial vehicle.

The police department have not currently released the name of the driver which has died. This is so that the family of the victim can be notified before it is available in the press.

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July 23, 2012

Driver Arrested After High Speed Chase

Police in Long Island attempted to stop a driver suspected of drunken driving, explains a source. However, the driver was not willing to stop and instead took off at high speed. The police followed and this quickly turned into a very dangerous high speed car chase.

The driver is facing charges for drunken driving and also failing to stop and leaving the scene of a traffic accident.

The high speed chase started at around 3 PM. Police were alerted to the pickup truck which was driving dangerously by other drivers phoning it in. The vehicle was travelling westbound along the Interstate at high speed, with little regard to other people on the highway at the same time.

According to reports which have been seen by the press in New York, the speed of the pickup truck was faster than 100 miles per hour on some stretches of the road. The driver also went off the road quite a few times which kicked up debris onto the road and caused problems to other motorists on the road.

A few minutes after police received the first 911 call about the driver, the car crashed into a semi-truck. This severely damaged the front of the vehicle, however it was still drivable. Instead of stopping like he should have done, the driver instead drove off at high speed.
The police were quickly catching up to the driver of the car. The driver turned off the interstate at exit 121. He carried on driving through the town and joined highway 30 while driving at excessive speeds.

There was a passenger in the vehicle at the time of the crash. This caused a bloody nose, but nothing too serious. This was caused because the passengers face hit the windshield and dashboard. This could only happen if the passenger was not correctly restrained in the vehicle with a seatbelt.

As with all traffic accidents a blood alcohol test was ordered explains the policeman. The results of this test are still pending, although it’s suspected that alcohol did have something to do with the incident.

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June 16, 2012

Failing brakes cause a truck accident that injured at least three people and closed traffic lanes for most of the day Sunday

The scene was all too common on I-70 Sunday. The road was closed most of the day because of an truck accidentinvolving an 18 –wheel truck and an unsuspecting SUV, said a witness.

The truck appeared to have been driving out of control according to local authorities when it’s brakes failed and slammed into a Chevrolet Trailblazer causing it to roll over on its side.
Passengers in the SUV were all injured to some degree. One of the passengers had to be cut out of the truck and had serious injuries. The other two passengers were left with only minor injuries but were sent to the hospital for observation according to police.

The 59-year-old driver of the truck sustained minor injuries, confirmed hospital workers. The driver will reportedly be charged with careless driving causing injuries. Officials believe the main cause for the crash was excessive speed for the steep grade.

“The driver was going too fast and this could have been avoided,” a State trooper told a reporter. “He is luck nobody was killed.”

The truck was carrying a material called sulfatrol according to State Troopers. “This material spilled all over the highway and is not dangerous but could cause trouble,” said one police officer. “We had to keep the road closed all day to keep vehicles away and make sure it was all cleaned up.”

Accidents of this nature can often be fatal and much more devastating for drivers and passengers, said a reporter. “We will hear about this type of truck accident thousands of times and there is almost always a fatality or serious injury.” He added.

Statistics show a small improvement in the frequency of these accidents in nassau and Suffolk, according to a study recently conducted in the seven of the United States, but they remain a high concern for police, troopers, truck companies and other drivers on the highways.

“Stricter laws and regulations have been put in place, but we have a long way to go,” said one state trooper. “Having the ABS on the vehicles helped but it isn’t a perfect solution. The drivers have to take responsibility for their own distractions and rest when they need to.”

Continue reading "Failing brakes cause a truck accident that injured at least three people and closed traffic lanes for most of the day Sunday" »

June 9, 2012

Police officer saves man’s life at the scene of a terrible truck accident

"I first noticed a fire on the road. When I went near, I saw a man lying there and diesel was leaking from an overturned truck. As a result of the collision, both the vehicles had caught fire. There could have been a blast in the vehicles. I rushed towards the man and pulled him away from the spot, and called a PCR van," said the police officer, which also heads up anti-terrorist operations at Daryaganj police station.

The truck driver speeding and then slamming into the bus allegedly caused the accident, which happened at a busy local crossing on Friday, said a witness.
He explained that when the truck and the bus collided, the truck turned over on its side and the bus driver was thrown onto the road.

The police officer was reportedly out patrolling when he saw the fire and the bus driver passed out near the two vehicles. His act of saving the injured bus driver was captured on camera according to his fellow officers, who now plan to reward his bravery.

"I reached the spot some two minutes after the accident. Though several people saw the man lying on the spot nobody rushed to his rescue. I just did my duty," said the officer. After bringing the man to safety, the officer said the firefighters already had the fire under control.
Sources said the police officer had a long history with his department and worked in various units since 1995. He was promoted to inspector last year and is well thought of at his station.
He was perhaps best known for his work against one of his city’s bigger criminals and drug lords. Accidents like this are rare in The Bronx and Brooklyn.

“Any officer in my shoes would have done exactly what I did,” the brave officer told a reporter. “Saving people and protecting our citizens is part of the job.”

No other injuries were reported from the truck accident but the bus and the truck that were involved have both been totaled according to court reports.

“These types of accidents are devastating for the vehicles involved,” said the owner of a local towing company. “I’m thankful nobody else was seriously injured in this accident. From the way the bus and truck look, I’m surprised,” he added.

Continue reading "Police officer saves man’s life at the scene of a terrible truck accident" »

May 28, 2012

Truck company owner being charged for a truck accident that killed 19 people and injured eight others

The owner of a truck company faces charges today for 19 deaths and 8 injuries in an accident involving his container truck.

A group of 25 people from New York City and Staten Island, who were traveling in a party bus to a wedding party, were unsuspectingly hit by a large container truck. The minivan was sideswiped and turned over, according to a witness.

19 of the people in the van died on impact according to police reports. Fire trucks and ambulances came quickly to the horrific scene and began to cut people out of the vehicle.
Police accused the truck owner under articles 70 and 82 of the Traffic Law.

“Article 70 of the Traffic Law states that the owner or manager of a vehicle is responsible if a traffic accident caused by their vehicle leads to damages,” said a New York Truck Accident Lawyer and added, “Article 82 states that those who unintentionally cause death while driving shall be imprisoned from one to three years, and/or fined from 2 million riels (US$990) to 6 million riels (US$1,486).”

“We did not arrest the owners of the truck because they did not drive the truck, but they have to be responsible for the accident by paying [compensation] to the [families of the] dead and the injured,” said the police officer involved in the case.

“The container truck driver drove his truck too fast while the road is curved and slipped because it was raining which caused [him]…to hit the electricity pole and crash into the 15-seat minivan.”

The seven surviving people and the driver of the truck were sent to a hospital for treatment of severe injuries tells a Lawyer. Head on collisions are on the rise in the area; according to a local police officer stating that just last month a head-on collision killed five people and injured eight.

“We hope these charges will send a serious message to truck drivers and the owners that are suppose to enforce regulations,” he said. “These crashes are too devastating for people and families.” The owner of the truck company could not be reached for comment.

Continue reading "Truck company owner being charged for a truck accident that killed 19 people and injured eight others" »

May 9, 2012

One Confirmed Dead Following Collision with Fire Truck

Sources have confirmed that one-person lie dead following a collision between the van that he was a passenger in and a fire truck. It has been reported that the fire truck was responding to a call when it struck a van that was making a left turn in front of the fire truck. Although the van had a green light when its driver initiated the turn, the fire truck struck the van on its left rear, thereby demolishing part of the van and killing one of the eight passengers. Six of the passengers and six firefighters were hospitalized with minor injuries, and two more whose conditions were listed as critical.

The 51-year old deceased man was identified to a Lawyer as a long-time resident of a state group home that is located in Willowbrook. The van was transporting individuals from the home to a day program that is offered by the Lifestyles for the Disabled. He was described as one who was always smiling and as being happy-go-lucky. He was also a competitor in Staten Island’s Special Olympics for the past several years.

The fire truck was responding to a reported fire, which turned out to be an overheated vehicle, and at the time of the accident had its lights and sirens activated. Immediately after the accident, the firefighters’ mission changed to that of rescuers and exited their vehicle to render aid to the accident victims. Firefighters had to use a hydraulic tool in order to extricate the victims from the van.

Sources close to the investigation in Queens and Westchester have told a reporter that the fire truck did not follow standard procedures in coming to a complete stop before entering an intersection of which the fire truck is facing a red light, essentially running the red traffic light. Other witnesses have stated that due to the street conditions the van had to make either a left or a right turn in order to clear a path for the fire truck. The investigation into the accident is ongoing and fire department officials could not be reached for further comments.

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April 30, 2012

Woman Files Lawsuit Against Truck Driver

As part of our ongoing investigative and reporting efforts, a rep strives to not only bring you the latest in truck accident investigations and reports, but also writes about when certain legal cases are presented that are of interest to our readers. As a matter of policy, a Lawyer does not specifically mention names of those persons that are involved in the legal system in any manner. This not only protects those persons who are desirous of maintaining their privacy, but also helps to avoid any confusion between certain stories that we cover.

A Missouri woman has filed legal suit in St. Clair County Circuit Court on February 9 against trucking company Empire Express of Memphis, TN. The suit alleges that the plaintiff was injured when one of the company’s drivers reportedly struck her vehicle in the rear with the truck on June 17, 2009.

The suit further alleges that she sustained permanent injuries to her head and lumbar spine as a result of the driver having rear-ended her vehicle. The suit further alleges that she has suffered great pain and mental anguish due to her injuries and blames the driver that has been named in the suit. The woman has also stated within her complaint that, “she incurred medical costs and has been deprived of participating in her normal life activities.”

The incident in question occurred as the plaintiff was sitting in traffic and waiting her turn to enter the entrance to I-44 in St. Louis, MO, on her way home. It was at this point that the driver of the truck struck her vehicle from behind, thereby causing her injuries. As a part of her complaint, she states that the truck driver “negligently drove without keeping a proper lookout, failed to keep his vehicle under control, drove too fast, failed to decrease his speed and followed Hollis-Bentley's vehicle too closely.” As of this writing, a study has not determined whether the truck driver received a citation for the accident brought forth in this lawsuit. The plaintiff is seeking monetary damages in this case of between $50,000 and $75,000, plus costs. This would happen in Nassau and Suffolk also.

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April 28, 2012

Police Looking for Witness to Vehicle Accident

The driver of a Wonderbread truck may have witnessed a fatal vehicle crash that killed a 20-year old man. Police are looking for the bread truck driver to question him about what he saw on Nashville Road and Highway 50 around 6:30am when the accident occurred. The young man was driving in one direction when his car jumped the center divider and hit a pickup truck traveling in the other direction. There are no other witnesses to question about this accident.

The driver of the pickup truck survived and was taken to a nearby hospital where he was treated for minor bruises and other minor injuries. It is unclear at this time why the young man would swerve his car into the lane. The car may have malfunctioned or the man may have fallen asleep behind the wheel. With many possibilities, local law enforcement officials are hoping the bread truck driver may be able to provide additional details. So far, police have not been able to locate the driver of the bread truck.

Since police have yet to determine how this accident happened, the young man's name has not been released. Police may also need more time to locate the man's family so they can make funeral arrangements and begin the grieving process. Funeral arrangements will probably be announced once the man's identity has been released.

After the truck accident, Nashville Road and Highway 50 were closed for hours while police gathered evidence and cleared the scene. Without the bread driver's account of what he saw it is unclear whether law enforcement officials will be able to determine how this accident happened. In cases like these where there is little evidence, having a witness can help greatly. The police in Tenn., as they would in Manhattan or Long Island, are actively looking for the driver of the bread truck by asking the driver to step forward. Any details the bread truck driver can provide may help law enforcement officials solve this case and allow the man's family to put their loved one to rest.

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April 21, 2012

A 15-year veteran at the New York City Department of Sanitation filed a complaint

A 15-year veteran at the New York City Department of Sanitation filed a complaint arising from an accident where he sustained personal injuries. The complaint was filed against the manufacturer of the garbage truck, the City of New York/Department of Sanitation, and a co-worker.

The action arises from an accident which occurred on September 15, 2005, at 10 A.M., in which the sanitation worker, was injured while performing his garbage collection duties on Staten Island. On that day, the sanitation worker was standing behind a garbage truck (Model 25-CU-041) and attempting to maneuver a scrap piece of wood into the hopper when the hopper appeared to self-activate, and his hand got caught on the wood thereby pulling both his arm and body into the hopper mechanism crushing his right hand and arm. At the time of the accident, he was working with a co-worker, who was seated in the driver's compartment when the truck accident occurred.

According to sources, the vehicle in question was ordered from the manufacturer after a competitive bidding process. As a general rule, manufacturers are not consulted or otherwise involved in the drafting of the detailed specifications for the truck. The detailed specifications are provided by the City and the manufacturer is not allowed to deviate from those specifications.

The manufacturer argued, among others, that the design of the hopper was reasonably safe for its intended use based upon a "tried and tested" design in use in New York City and various other public and private collection agencies throughout the United States and that there is no evidence of any manufacturing defect or a failure to inspect, as the design was extensively tested and approved by the City of New York.

In this case, the court found that the garbage collector never showed that there was defect in the truck as of its manufacture date. The court also noted that there was no design defect in the truck in that the truck, as designed, was reasonably safe for its intended use.

Manufacturers and sellers in the Bronx and Brooklyn may be held liable for injuries caused by ordinary negligence, like the failure to exercise reasonable care in avoiding the occurrence of injuries which can be expected of a product which would be dangerous if negligently manufactured or sold. Gross negligence, however, arises only when the conduct of the tortfeasor shows either a reckless disregard for the safety or rights of others or when the conduct "smacks" of intentional wrongdoing. In this case, no proof of either ordinary nor gross negligence is evident.

The court further noted that the sanitation worker, and the City, could no longer file a claim of breach of warranty against the manufacturer of the truck because the truck's warranty already expired. The truck was manufactured in 2001 and it had a one-year warranty.

Continue reading "A 15-year veteran at the New York City Department of Sanitation filed a complaint" »

April 19, 2012

Commercial Accidents Statistics Published by New York Truck Accident Lawyer

Each year, a company publishes a collection of figures for the previous year’s accidents and collisions for Commercial Vehicles. The list also includes the stats for Tractor Trailer and Semi Truck accidents. After much anticipation, the numbers for 2010 are out, shedding light on the grim upturn in serious accidents involving commercial vehicles. During the last calendar year, accidents involving Commercial Vehicles numbered upwards of 500,000. One fifth of accidents resulted in significant injury for at least one person involved. The death rate for accidents was just at 1 percent, a markedly higher number than 2009, when only about .8 percent of collisions resulted in a fatality.

According to the source who released the numbers, these truck accidents will only increase over the coming years. The massive up-tick in accidents and collisions is a direct result of the increased number of commercial vehicles on the road. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety estimates that an increase of as much as 25 percent in the number of Commercial Vehicles on the Roadways is possible by the end of 2012.

The study pointed out that the increase presents a major problem for US traffic and criminal courts, which are already significantly backlogged with cases. He said that the extremely high number of cases which are settled out of court is a direct result of the agonizingly slow legal process involved for those in accidents. This problem is exacerbated by the notoriously long lag time required by insurance companies in Nassau and Suffolk to settle a suit.

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April 14, 2012

Truck Accident Could Bring Legal Troubles

A routine morning trip to school turned into a tragedy on Tuesday morning outside of Louisville, when a dump-truck driver collided with the back of a school bus on its morning route. Thirteen students from the Jefferson County Public School System, along with the driver of their bus, were injured and transported to local area hospitals for treatment, reported a source who is connected to the case. The bus was traveling north on Interstate 65, and the truck accident occurred in the vicinity of the Watterson Expressway.

Kosair Children’s Hospital received the injured children, all of whom were from 6 to 9 years old. Doctors at the hospital said that the students were suffering from minor back pain and mild neck injuries. While many of the students were taken directly to the hospital, others were taken on to school. Of the group that actually arrived at the school, many subsequently reported head and neck pain and were taken to the hospital as well. The Lawyer reporting on the case mentioned that these injuries are characteristic of a highway speed collision, and alluded to the fact that these types of truck accidents can frequently be more deadly.

Additional information about the accident was not available at the time of this article’s publication, pending the completion of the investigation. Police have not indicated whether the driver of the dump truck will be charged with a crime, although a witness said it was likely in a case like this that criminal charges could be filed. These accidents are uncommon in Staten Island and New York City.

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April 9, 2012

Overturned Logger Could be Trouble

Traffic on Harris Creek Road was obstructed on Monday due to a logging accident which had occurred early in the day in the Horseshoe Bend area of Boise, Idaho. A witness who was present at the scene reported that the driver operating the logging truck had just been hired by the logging company and was working his first day on the job. This claim could not be corroborated by third-party sources.

Photos of the truck accident site show the truck on its side against a very steep, snowy embankment. The load of logs the rig was carrying appears to have been dislodged, and pieces of timber can be seen 50 to 60 feet from the truck. The person who reported on the incident said that large rigs can frequently get into trouble in snowy conditions. Under normal circumstances, a small shift in weight, or an unbalanced tire might not cause significant problems, but in heavy snow these issues can become significant.

Additional details on the accident were unavailable at this time, pending an investigation by the local police department, as well as by the logging company itself. The cause of the incident is unknown, as is the condition of the logging truck operator. The Lawyer interviewed for this article stated that cases like this occasionally result in criminal proceedings, and it is possible that the reporting officers are remaining particularly tight-lipped about the details of the accident, pending criminal charges.

Truck accidents like this one are common in rural areas like Long Island and Westchester County. These areas have many super highways which are traveled by trucks.

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April 2, 2012

Propane Truck Upset Causes Alarm

North Carolina became the site of a dramatic situation that resembled many Hollywood movies early on Tuesday morning, when a propane truck overturned on N.C. 68 in the Pleasant Ridge area. One vehicle was involved in the accident in addition to the truck, reported a witness that provided details of the incident. One person involved in the crash was injured, but the injuries were not considered serious. Traffic was detoured throughout the day, but it was anticipated that normal flow would resume by Wednesday.

Due to the highly volatile nature of propane, the truck accident had to be dealt with extremely carefully by fire and rescue crews. The Deputy Chief of the Greensboro Fire department was on hand to provide oversight and communicate with reporters. He said that after the accident, emergency crews safely transferred as much propane as possible out of the tank, although it was impossible to remove the entire load. The attorney connected with the case said that a third-party company with experience in these types of truck accidents had been called in to set the propane tank upright so the extraction process could be completed.

Specifics in the case are still forthcoming from the investigating officers. It is unclear at this time if anyone involved would face criminal charges, although the advocate said that such litigation would be unlikely, due to the relatively minor level of injury to those involved. Investigating officers in Manhattan and Queens are expected to release a report when they conclude their investigation.

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March 31, 2012

Questions surround Truck Accident

Green County, Indiana- Officials from the Sullivan County Police department were involved in heavy cleanup on Monday after an accident on State Road 159, reported a witness who was in Green County at the time of the truck accident, which occurred early in the afternoon somewhere south of Dugger in Sullivan County.

Sullivan County 911 logged an emergency call at around 1:30, and immediately notified police and other emergency personnel. Officers responding to the scene found a three-axle coal truck which had flipped onto its side, spilling its contents into the road. The policeman was unable to speak to the severity of the accident, or the condition of the driver. It is possible that slick road conditions may have been a factor in the accident. One other theory which has been mentioned suggests that the coal load may have shifted or settled unevenly, causing a weight imbalance which contributed to the truck accident.

The latest report on the cleanup activity came at around 3:00 on Monday afternoon. A representative of the Sullivan County Sheriff’s Department reported that the Sherriff’s department was working actively with crews from the Indiana Department of Transportation to resolve the situation and bring traffic back to normal flow.

Unfortunately, many of the details surrounding the incident are still unclear. The source, who works in both The Bronx and Brooklyn, we interviewed for this article said that frequently in cases like this, the investigating officers will refrain from making public comment until after the investigation is complete.

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March 15, 2012

5 killed in Texas accident

Three children and two adults were killed in a head on crash that took place in Texas. The collision resulted in a fiery explosion, Police told a reporter. Police authorities indicate that the accident happened this past Sunday afternoon. The adult in the truck accidentwas driving a Volkswagen vehicle when it got out of control and slammed into a dump truck head on.

Everyone in the vehicle was killed as soon as the impact happened. Three of the passengers were children ranging from age two to eight; two boys and one girl. The driver was the children's grandmother. It was reported to the TV station that the other adult in the truck accident was the driver of the dump truck who was also killed in the accident. The dump truck was on its way to a garbage dump and that makes this truck accident a commercial truck accident. Any truck accident which happens in the act of work is considered to be a commercial truck accident.

The witness said that it seemed as if the truck driver's death came at the hands of the fire and not necessarily the impact itself. The Police said, "The truck driver was on the phone with his wife when the crash happened.

He told her about the accident and he tried to escape, but the truck went up in flames." The truck was en route to another state with a trailer attached to it. The Police confirmed that everyone involved in the accident was wearing a seat belt.

The truck driver’s wife is distraught, but is happy that she had a chance to hear the last words that her husband uttered to her before he died, “I love you.”

Commercial truck accident like this are often reported in Suffolk County but rarely in New York City which does not have four lane highways like the ones in Long Island.

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March 12, 2012

Crash with truck leaves one injured

While driving along 82nd Street, close to Highway 27, police told a reporter that a man ran a red light and careened into a salt truck that was owned by the city of Lubbock. The man had to be cut from his vehicle and a helicopter had to come on the accident scene to get him and take him to the University Medical Center located close by.

The man’s injuries were life-threatening, after the accident, and he remains in critical condition. Officials from the emergency team reported that the man was not wearing a seat belt at the time of the accident. This may have been the reason of the extent of his injuries. No one was hurt in the city vehicle and investigations are still ongoing at this time.

The police explained that running a red light is a serious offense and can cost you your life. The police think that the speed at which the driver was going may have caused the crash. He was never in control of the vehicle at any time. The vehicle spun out of control and landed into the salt truck on the median. The driver remains in the hospital under medical supervision, and he is expected to recover.

The man’s family was notified of the truck accident by the police and they are thankful that he will be closely watched and nursed back to health.

Truck accidents caused by cars which are out of control are not unusual. In Queens and Staten Island there are many reports of accidents like this one. It is not clear why this is but the fact is that this is what occurs.

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March 7, 2012

Truck carrying hay overturns

A large truck turned over on Highway 15 in close proximity to the Dillon area this afternoon and caused a traffic congestion that was miles long. The truck was carrying hay and when it overturned, all of its contents were scattered on the highway, tells a witness.

Tis particular truck accidentcaused a major delay is on the highway and police had to shut down more than one lanes. The accident happened during rush hour. It happened approximately 1 p.m. in the afternoon. The police came on the scene to put things in order. They told the authorities that the truck was exiting the Twin Bridges area onto the highway when it shifted and tipped over. There are about 30 bales of hay packed on the truck. When this happened, the two southbound lanes were shut down for over an hour until the police got the roads cleared.

The police said that fortunately for the driver of the truck, he was not injured during the accident. He was a little shaken up, because of what happened, but he came out without a scratch on his body. Police patrolled the area until all of the hay was taken up off of the highway. Traffic resumed as soon as the roads were cleared and the lanes were open for the evening rush hour.

Truck accidents like this commercial truck accident are apt to happen in rural areas for many different reasons. First of all trucks carrying hay are not apt to be found driving around and making deliveries in urban areas. Secondly, highways like the ones found in Long Island and Westchester County are more likely to have trucks on them and therefore more likely to have accidents like the the one described here.

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February 17, 2012

Pie Crust Truck Overturns

Police told a reporter about a truck accident that occurred on Monday morning on Highway 70 in Washington County. The tractor trailer vehicle blocked the highway for several hours and traffic was jammed in 4 miles along the highway. A witness claims that the truck was carrying pie crusts to Buffalo Township when got out of control and careened off the road and turned over. The media came on the scene to cover the story. The tractor-trailer truck flipped over and landed on the highway in the westbound lane. Lucky for everyone, there were no cars that were driving in the westbound lane during the time of the crash.

Also fortunate for the driver of that tractor-trailer, he was not killed in the crash. He was taken from the truck and driven to the hospital where he received treatment for his injuries. A policeman was uncertain at this time whether they will file charges against the tractor-trailer driver or not. New York City and Long Island police try to warn drivers against being unaware of what's going on around them. Truck accidents often are caused by the fact that the truck driver becomes bored and distracted and does not pay attention to the conditions on the road he's driving on. There were no drugs or alcohol involved in this case but that is often the case. Drivers on long hauls often use alcohol and or drugs to deal with the boredom which comes with this kind of job.

Every motorist was unhappy that the highway was shut down for so long. It was during busy rush hour, and it caused a lot of inconvenience for many motorists. In addition, the crash caused diesel fuel to spill onto the road and cleanup crews had to be called on the scene to take care of the matter.

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February 7, 2012

On August 1, 2005 an employee of a construction company was working on a construction site

On August 1, 2005 an employee of a construction company was working on a construction site when he was injured. He was working as a laborer taking out tile, glass and fixtures from old apartments at the site and taking them to the dumpster. When one dumpster filled up, his manager told him to drag the empty dumpster from across the street over to the side of the street that he was working on in order to start putting debris into it. One of the sheet rock trucks was blocking the location and the manager told him to ask the sheet rock people to move that truck over to make room for the dumpster. The worker went over to the truck and asked the sheet rock workers to move the truck. As they started to move the truck, the worker was walking backward, guiding the sheet rock truck when he stepped on to a manhole cover. The manhole cover popped up onto its side and the worker fell into the hole with both legs. There were several witnesses to his fall. The worker testified at trial that earlier he had seen some water department people draining the fire hydrant into the man hole and that they had removed the cover and one man had gone down in to the hole. He stated that he had not seen any of the construction people on the site that he worked with anywhere near the man hole prior to his fall. This did not happen in Queens or Long Island.

There are several questions of fact in this case. First of all, the Justices cannot determine who owned the housing that was being worked on at the time of the truck accident. They also cannot determine who actually owns the property where the incident occurred. No deeds or affidavits have been submitted clarifying ownership. There is a question of who owned the manhole and who worked on the manhole thereby establishing who had responsibility to operate and maintain the manhole.

The Justices in this case determine that there are enough questions of fact to require a jury to hear this case. They determined that there could well be a findable case under Labor Law §241 for the fall and that as such, they are precluded from deciding on any summary judgment. It is so ordered by this Court that a trial shall be held in this case.

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January 30, 2012

An action was filed seeking declaratory judgment

An action was filed seeking declaratory judgment. The plaintiffs, who are the insured and one of their insurers, seek an adjudication that another insurer, is obliged to defend a certain action for personal injuries based upon the alleged negligence of one of the plaintiffs. The personal injury action was filed by workers who were injured as a result of a truck accident. According to sources, the motor truck involved in the accident had been leased. The truck was covered by a liability policy.

The policy not only protected the named insured, the owner of the truck, but also any person or organization legally responsible for the use of the subject truck. The policy, however, does not protect the named insured if the accident occurs while the automobile is not being used exclusively in the business of the Named Insured and over a route the Named Insured is authorized to serve by federal or public authority.

The plaintiffs contended that at the time of the truck accident the truck was operated in the business of the named insured and that therefore the policy applies to the pending personal injury suit. The insurer, on the other hand, asserted that the named insured did not operate the truck exclusively in his own business at the time of the accident and that therefore there is no coverage here.

The court found the situation anomalous. It pointed out that, if the named insured operated the truck exclusively in his own business then under common law principles, the plaintiffs would not be held liable in the personal injury action pending against them. One the other hand, if the named insured did not operate the truck exclusively in his own business when the alleged accident occurred the policy would seem to be inapplicable. According to the court, liability of the plaintiffs depends upon their relationship to the name insured at the time of the accident. It may not be assumed or considered that the insurance company is adequately informed about the relationship between the plaintiffs and named insured and concerning the conditions under which, and the agreement by which, the truck was operated on the day of the accident, the court pointed out. Therefore, the facts which would reveal whether the policy issued by the insurance company covers the case can be properly evaluated only at a plenary trial, the court concluded.

Although the plaintiffs insist that the named insured was an independent contractor operating exclusively in his own behalf, the court said there are no facts from which this allegation may be determined. The leasing agreement between the plaintiffs and the named insured does not indicate whether the named insured was to act exclusively for the plaintiffs, and the agreement itself was over a year old at the time of the accident, the court noted. Courts in the Bronx and Brooklyn would handle a case like this in a similar way.

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January 12, 2012

Two vehicle wreck involves milk truck

This was a case with a bit of a different twist. A Ford utility van rear-ended a milk truck. While there was some spilled milk, over all, both the Ford driver and the trucker were okay after the wreck. From the truck accident reports, the police indicated that the Ford driver wasn’t paying attention to what he was doing and because he was driving while distracted, he slammed into the back end of the milk truck, explained the source.

There was some on scene clean up and a warning issued by police to drive with care in the area and avoid the frozen spilled milk. It was also suggested that others traveling the same highway use due care and attention to the road conditions and slow down accordingly. There is some speculation that the driver of the Ford utility van may be issued a speeding citation, added the police, which wouldn’t be too surprising given the road conditions at the time and the Ford driver’s inattention.

Luckily, neither driver was hurt, but this story could have very easily turned out another way. Driving while distracted cannot only cause injuries, it may kill someone, added the expert. Those behind the wheel of a vehicle owe it to themselves and others on the road, to take care while driving. It’s only common courtesy to take care out there and pay attention to your own driving, the road conditions and what others are doing around you. Your life may depend on it.

Truck accidents liked this have been reported in Staten Island and Suffolk.

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December 14, 2011

Red Light Runner Slams into Truck

Some days, it doesn’t pay to get out of bed. This particular day was not a good one for this woman and her two children. The woman, who was driving a PT Cruiser was headed east on a street when she careened into a commercial truck that was heading south.

While the details are not crystal clear in this case, what is known is that the woman blew a red light just prior to the accident. She was taken to the hospital. Thankfully, the two children were not hurt and the trucker was in good shape as well, said the source.

Chances are that the police with cite the woman for running the red light and will also want to take some time to find out what she was doing just before going through it. They will want to find her cell phone and determine whether or not she was using it at the time of the truck accident, as in texting or having a conversation while driving.

They will also be checking to see if she was attempting to use an onboard GPS device, handling her kids to settle them down, reaching for something on the floor of the vehicle or was eating and driving at the same time. This accident has all the signposts of driving while distracted and only further investigation will give the police enough details to know what charges they may lay, explained the reporter.

There is one other thing to consider here, and that is, even though it may look like this truck accident was caused by driving while distracted, the woman may well have been under the influence, another thing the police will be checking. Police in Brooklyn and Queens would handle this accident and the evidence they found the same way.

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September 7, 2011

Truck hits bridge on Onondaga Lake Parkway

A man is given a ticket due to him crashing into the CSX Bridge while driving his truck along the Orondaga Lake Parkway.

The driver was employed to transport computer equipment and was driving a rental truck, explains a Law Firm. The truck driver lost control for some reason and struck the bridge on Wednesday afternoon.

The local sheriff said that the driver of the truck was a 60 year old man. However, instead of stopping to report the accident like he should have done, he continued driving for over a mile. He then stopped in a large parking lot.

The driver of the truck has received a ticket for not stopping at traffic lights, and also driving off after causing damage to the property.

He told his rep that the reason he didn’t stop is because he thought it was just a minor accident. He didn’t realize that he crashed into the bridge and caused any damage. Apparently he thought that he just scraped the top of the bridge.

By looking at damage caused to the vehicle it is clear that he should have certainly realized the extent of the damage that he caused to the bridge. It would have been difficult for him to think that the accident was only very minor.

Fortunately nobody was injured in the accident. However, the road traveling northbound needed to be closed by the authorities for over an hour. This allowed the crew to clean up the road and also check that the bridge is stable and relatively undamaged. After the road was cleaned up, the northbound lanes were then reopened to traffic.

There is no reason why this truck accident should have happened if the driver was actually paying attention. The height of the bridge is marked at 10 feet and 9 inches. The height of the truck is known to be 13 feet. This is something that the driver of a truck should know, and he should never have attempted to drive under such a low bridge. Accidents like this are common in Long Island but not in Manhattan.

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September 4, 2011

School Bus Almost Hit by Coal Truck

A bus carrying a group of high school students nearly collided with a coal truck carrying about 20 tons of coal. Luckily, the bus driver was able to swerve the bus in time and missed the truck completely. Debris and dirt hit the bus and caused the windshield to shatter which caused minor injuries to the driver, the students were not harmed. Students credit the bus driver for acting quickly and saving their lives.
After the accident, school officials were called to the scene along with law enforcement and medical personnel to assess if anyone suffered any major injuries. The only injuries reported were minor injuries to the bus driver's face. The parents of students were called and students were safely transported back to their high school, says a New York Truck Accident Lawyer. Students were then given the option of taking the rest of the day off or attending classes at the high school.
It was reported that the coal truck was to blame for the accident. The coal truck swerved into the opposite lane as the bus was approaching. It is unclear why the coal truck was in the wrong lane. After the incident students were upset but grateful to the driver for his quick reaction to the situation, claims a NY Truck Accident Attorney. The bus driver is being considered a hero for thinking quickly and avoiding a potentially deadly accident.
The students were on their way to a nearby university to take part in a science lab. The high school and university had created a program where students could attend labs at the university to enrich the academic life of the students. Unfortunately, the students did not get the opportunity to attend labs that morning. Accidents like this one are investigated fully when the happen in The Bronx and Manhattan.
The incident occurred in the morning around 7am. There were few vehicles on the road at this time. It is unknown if the driver of the coal truck will face any criminal charges for driving in the wrong lane or endangering the lives of the students, their chemistry teacher and the bus driver.

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June 11, 2011

Fuel Tanker Loses Control

A fuel tanker dumped roughly three to 6,000 liters of gas late on Tuesday after getting out of control on a rural Manitoba highway, explains a New York City Truck Accident Law Office.
The accident happened somewhere between 10 pm and 11 pm on PR 280 about 50 kilometers west of Gillam, indicates an attorney from the City Office close to the source.
According to the New York Truck Accident Law Office, RCMP say the tanker was driving eastbound when it hit an oncoming vehicle at the crest of a hill. The truck caught the edge of the road and landed on its side in the south ditch. The oncoming vehicle couldn’t stop.
It is not yet clear whether drugs or alcohol had a direct relation to this accident. Both parties are being investigated although the likelihood of finding a correlation is still unknown. Neither driver is said to have drug or alcohol problems so the findings will be of interest. It is also said that the driver of the fuel tanker may have very well been tired, but this too is currently unknown and an investigation is under way.
Police are combing the area for witnesses, but still have yet to find anyone to come forward with information. Anyone who thinks they may have been in the area or may have seen something are encouraged to contact local police with that information, even if they think it might be insignificant in nature.
The 46-year-old truck driver from Grand Rapids suffers minor injuries that are said to not be life threatening. It is not known if he was or is still in the hospital, but right now he seems to be doing okay.
As of Wednesday morning, PR 280 was still closed between Split Lake First Nation and Gillam while environment workers got the scene cleaned up. It is unclear exactly how long it will take to get the roadways cleared and traffic flowing regularly on the road. Drivers heading that way are urged to proceed with caution at this time. An accident like this one which occurs in Manhattan, New York City, would call for a Truck Accident Lawyer in NY City to handle the legal aspects.

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June 9, 2011

Malfunctioned Brakes cause accident on I-70

Failing brakes cause a truck accident that injured at least three people and closed traffic lanes for most of the day Sunday, a New York Truck Accident Lawyer explained. The scene was all too common on I-70 Sunday. The road was closed most of the day because of an accident involving an 18 –wheel truck and an unsuspecting SUV, stated an Accident Lawyer.

The truck appeared to have been driving out of control according to local authorities when its brakes failed and slammed into a Chevrolet Trailblazer causing it to roll over on its side.

Passengers in the SUV were all injured to some degree. One of the passengers had to be cut out of the truck and had serious injuries. The other two passengers were left with only minor injuries but were sent to the hospital for observation according to police.

The 59-year-old driver of the truck sustained minor injuries, confirmed hospital workers. The driver will reportedly be charged with careless driving causing injuries. Officials believe the main cause for the crash was excessive speed for the steep grade.

“The driver was going too fast and this could have been avoided,” said a State trooper. “He is lucky nobody was killed.”

The truck was carrying a material called sulfatrol destined for Nassau and Suffolk County according to State Troopers. “This material spilled all over the highway and is not dangerous but could cause trouble,” said one police officer. “We had to keep the road closed all day to keep vehicles away and make sure it was all cleaned up.”

Accidents of this nature can often be fatal and much more devastating for drivers and passengers, described a New York Truck Lawyer. “We will hear about this type of accident thousands of times and there is almost always a fatality or serious injury.” He added.

Statistics show a small improvement in the frequency of these accidents, according to a study recently conducted in the seven of the United States, but they remain a high concern for police, troopers, truck companies and other drivers on the highways. An accident or this nature which takes place in Nassau and Suffolk Counties, NY will always have a lawyer who is familiar with the local laws on call for direction and guidance.

“Stricter laws and regulations have been put in place, but we have a long way to go,” said one state trooper. “Having the ABS on the vehicles helped but it isn’t a perfect solution. The drivers have to take responsibility for their own distractions and rest when they need to.”

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June 6, 2011

Truck Accident Knocks Out Hydro Pole

The intersection of Derry Rd. W. and Creditview Rd. will be shut down for several hours, says a New York City Truck Accident Law Firm, after a transport truck struck a cement hydro pole this morning causing live wires to dangle dangerously over the road. It is unclear how long the wires had been there, and if this was a dangerous situation to begin with.
The accident was reported around 11:30 am. Emergency crews arriving on the scene stated that the pole was falling over the road, with live wires sparking.
Peel Regional Police quickly shut down the intersection and the roads in the immediate area, says the NYC Truck Accident Law Firm. Work crews were dispatched to the scene to clean up fuel that flooded the eastbound lanes of Derry Rd. It is not known at this time how long that job will take. Crews couldn’t give an estimate until they got a good look at the damage to the area how long it would take to fix.

Had this accident happened in Nassau County, Long Island, it would be necessary to contact a Long Island attorney to handle the case.
Enersource Hydro Mississauga says about 2150 customers lost power as a result of the collision. Power should be restored shortly. They want everyone to know that they are working diligently on fixing things and that if you are out of power, you should just be patient. No one is going to go unnoticed and everyone will eventually have their power restored. They say that phone calls, especially angry ones don’t help the situation, to just sit tight, and wait. Power will be restored to the area as quickly and efficiently as possible.
The driver of the transport was not injured, although it is unclear whether drugs or alcohol were involved with the accident at this time, although an investigation into the matter is currently pending. The hydro pole will have to be replaced because of the damage.
"Members of the public shouldn't expect the Derry Rd.-Creditview intersection to be open for quite some time," said the Peel Police.

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