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Outdoor Dining in NYC Poses Safety Risk to Patrons

New York City restaurants have pivoted their dining room setups to comply with the city’s Open Restaurants program. The coronavirus pandemic has hit restaurants especially hard, but the city introduced the Open Restaurants initiative to help eateries get their revenues back on track. The guidelines allow restaurants to set up socially distanced tables outside – even on sidewalks and in the streets. While this has allowed restaurant owners to serve more customers safely in regard to the virus, it has presented a new and potentially deadly dilemma.

By seating guests on roadways and sidewalks, restaurant owners put them at a greater risk of getting hit by errant drivers, especially when the roads are narrow. Despite the city’s mandate to construct blockades between the roadway and the tables, there have already been four accidents in which a vehicle drove into dining tables since the government allowed outdoor seating in June.

According to NYC.gov, the barriers between the seating area in the roadway and the lanes must be 18 inches wide and no more than 36 inches tall. However, they do not require the barricades to be a certain weight or made of a specified material. Because of this lack of specification, restaurants are constructing barricades made from weaker materials, such as plywood or decorative planters.

The New York Post reported that a pickup truck slammed into the outdoor seating area of the cocktail bar, L’Wren, located on Fifth Avenue in Sunset Park, on July 21. The restaurant owner, Travis Klaus, said no one was seriously injured, but that the accident likely scared away some of his regular customers. Police reported that the 22-year-old driver of the pickup truck did not have a driver’s license and attempted to flee the scene. A L’Wren customer chased him down and stayed with him until the police arrived.

About 6,000 restaurants spread across the five boroughs are operating with outdoor seating in a roadway, according to the New York Post. The city has been carrying out inspections to ensure the safety of these dining areas and the compliance of their Open Restaurant guidelines. However, these accidents continue to happen, even when the barricades are deemed compliant, such as at L’Wren.

Contact a New York Car Accident and Injury Lawyer

If you were hit by a car while dining outside, either on a sidewalk or in a roadway, call the attorneys at Hach & Rose, LLP. You may be facing expensive medical bills, as well as dealing with pain and suffering, and we want to help you secure the compensation you deserve.

Call our office at (212) 779-0057 to get in touch with a member of our team today. We offer free consultations so that you can learn about your legal options.

What Causes Car Accidents in New York City?

In New York City, there is a car accident every two minutes. This amounts to over 200,000 car accidents every year. Out of those 200,000 accidents, there are close to 200 fatalities. But why are there so many accidents in just one city? Factors such as poor road conditions, dangerous driving hours, speeding, congestion, and age contribute to the high number of accidents.

One of the top causes of car accidents in New York City is negligence on the part of at-fault drivers, which is entirely out of the victim’s control. Negligence in driving could refer to driving while drunk or under the influence of drugs or being distracted by something such as a phone while driving. When a driver is distracted or inebriated on the road, they run the risk of swerving into oncoming traffic, drifting into the lane next to them, or running red lights. The results of these types of errors can range from minor to fatal.

Another major contributing factor to car accidents in New York is unsafe road conditions. Weather in the city can be unpredictable and sometimes dangerous for driving. In the fall, rainy and foggy conditions make roads slick and reduce visibility, leaving the driver at risk of skidding their tires or being unable to see the vehicle in front of them. During winter, snow and ice compound these problems by adding elements such as black ice and snow flurries. During blizzards, the driver may not be able to see the vehicle in front of them until it is too late, and when they brake, their car may skid and rear-end the other vehicle.

Some drivers pose a threat to fellow drivers simply because of age-related factors. Senior citizens are more likely to suffer from poor eyesight, hearing loss, and delayed reaction times. These issues could threaten both pedestrians and other drivers. As senior citizens get older, they may consider taking additional precautions, such as only driving during the day. They may also consider ride-sharing options or public transportation if they’re starting to see signs that it may no longer be safe to drive. These signs might include stopping at green lights or running red lights, sideswiping parked cars, or getting lost more easily.

Contact a New York Car Accident Lawyer

It may seem like getting into an accident is almost beyond your control but finding the right legal firm to represent you afterward is not. Hiring the right personal injury firm after a car accident is the most valuable decision you can make immediately following your injury. The right firm could be the difference between receiving the maximum compensation and only receiving the bare minimum or nothing at all.

If you’ve been in an accident, please don’t hesitate to reach out to the New York car accident attorneys at Hach & Rose, LLP. We will fight aggressively for your right to compensation while you focus on healing. Call us at (212) 779-0057 to discuss your next steps with a dedicated member of our team.

Electric Scooter Injuries Are on the Rise, Doctors Say

Injuries sustained from electric scooter accidents nearly doubled from 2018 to 2019, according to a new study. Since electric scooters became a popular mode of transportation in 2014, they have caused a number of accidents, some of them fatal. As scooter companies reckon with these unintended consequences, doctors have grown used to seeing scooter injuries in their emergency rooms.

According to an article from Medical Xpress, in 2019, there were 29,600 scooter injuries nationwide that required hospital treatment. Dr. Eric Wagner, a surgeon at Emory University, said many of the injuries he treats are serious head injuries. Though scooter companies such as Lime encourage helmet use for all of their riders, many choose not to wear them. This results in serious injuries when a rider falls from the scooter or is struck by another vehicle.

Among the injuries riders sustain from scooter accidents are:

  • Brain bleeds
  • Broken bones
  • Concussions
  • Skull fractures
  • Internal organ injuries

Doctors are especially concerned about the potential for riders to suffer a traumatic brain injury when they fall off a scooter at a high rate of speed. About 13% of all emergency room scooter cases that doctors see are traumatic brain injuries, which are caused by violent blows to the head. They can also occur when part of the fragmented skull pierces the brain after a serious fall.

Common symptoms of traumatic brain injuries are:

  • Headaches
  • Confusion
  • Ringing of the ears
  • Slight nausea

However, any of the following symptoms may indicate a more severe brain injury:

  • Seizures
  • Vomiting
  • Disorientation
  • Loss of memory
  • Clear fluid starts leaking from your nose or ears
  • Loss of muscle control

The demographic that accounted for the greatest number of scooter injuries in the past five years was men aged 15 to 35, according to Medical Xpress. Doctors say scooter accidents can be avoided or minimized by avoiding alcohol and substances while driving the scooter and wearing a helmet. Additionally, experts warn against going too fast on the scooter, especially if you are riding it at an older age when your balance, coordination, and reaction time might be slower. Many accidents can be avoided if scooter riders abide by traffic laws, ride at a moderate speed, and wear protective gear.

Contact a New York Personal Injury Lawyer

If you were injured in a scooter accident, you might be entitled to compensation. The lawyers at Hach & Rose, LLP have secured substantial recovery for clients injured through no fault of their own, and they want to do the same for you. Reach out to our legal team at (212) 779-0057 to discuss your legal options and how much your case might be worth.

Pedestrian Injured by Falling Basket Designed to Protect Passersby From Falling Subway Debris

A metal basket struck a pedestrian Sunday, August 2, seriously injuring them and sending them to Jamaica Hospital for treatment. This type of basket is attached to the undersides of elevated subways throughout New York City and is designed to catch debris that often falls loose from the tracks.

According to the Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA), construction crews were working on the East New York J and Z line tracks at the time of the accident, around 11:45 a.m. The pedestrian, whose identity has not been released, was walking near the intersection of Fulton St. and Alabama Avenue when the basket fell on them, according to the Daily News.

The protective metal baskets were only installed last year after the MTA received numerous reports of debris falling on pedestrians. But as soon as last October, the MTA found that the baskets were not as trustworthy as they should have been and were not working as designed. The Daily News reported that there are 325,000 metal baskets installed for the 168 miles of elevated subway tracks in New York City.

Last October, the MTA issued a rapid inspection of all 325,000 baskets after a 15-piece hunk of metal fell from the tracks and crashed through a parked car. The inspection found over 2 million pieces of debris that could potentially fall and not be caught by the baskets, according to the Daily News. The MTA had planned to replace the metal baskets with safer, more reliable netting throughout the city, but the coronavirus pandemic put this plan on hold.

As the plan for netting replacements waits out a persistent pandemic, more instances of falling debris and even falling baskets are likely to occur. New Yorkers can potentially sue the MTA, or any government entity, if they are injured as a result of that entity’s negligence or failure to act responsibly. But there are generally many rules and deadlines to keep in mind if you plan to sue a government entity such as the MTA.

Filing a Notice of Claim

If you suffered an injury caused by the MTA, you must file a Notice of Claim within 90 days of the injury. Family members can also file a Notice of Claim for the wrongful death of another family member. The Notice of Claim is an official document that includes information such as:

  • The victim’s name and address, and the name and address of their attorney
  • The time and location of where the injury or accident occurred
  • The circumstances surrounding this claim
  • The type and degree of injuries sustained

After the government receives this claim, they will have 30 days to respond with a request for a hearing. During this hearing, the victim or their family will testify under oath to the circumstances of their injury. Then, the victim or their family can file a legal suit against the MTA (or other entity).

Contact a New York Accident Attorney

If you were injured by falling subway debris or injured on public transit due to someone else’s negligence, you may have a right to compensation. The attorneys at Hach & Rose, LLP can help you sort out the facts of your case and understand how much it might be worth. Our attorneys have spent years winning compensation for our clients after they sustained injuries and want to do the same for you. Call our office at (212) 779-0057 to schedule your free consultation.

Scooter Company Revel Suspends NYC Operations After Fatal Crashes

The ride-sharing scooter company Revel has temporarily suspended its services in New York City while the company reassesses safety protocols following two deadly accidents.

On July 28, the scooter service sent out the following message on Twitter:

New York riders – starting today, NYC service will be shut down until further notice. We’re reviewing and strengthening our rider accountability and safety measures and communicating with city officials, and we look forward to serving you again in the near future.

A local CBS broadcast journalist died after falling off a Revel moped on July 18. The victim, 26-year-old Nina Kapur, was riding on the back of the moped, which was being driven by an unidentified 26-year-old man at the time of the accident. Revel provides riders with two helmets each time they rent a moped, but neither Kapur nor the driver was wearing them. Kapur died at Bellevue Hospital on the same day. The driver only suffered minor injuries.

Just ten days after Kapur’s death, 32-year-old Jeremy Malave died after he crashed his Revel scooter into a light pole and suffered severe head trauma in Queens. Officials are unsure whether he was wearing a helmet at the time of the crash.

Some state officials, including New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio and U.S. Congressman Adriano Espaillat (D-N.Y.), called for Revel to suspend and reevaluate their practices, according to Fox News. On Twitter, Espaillat called for the scooters to be removed from city streets, suggesting that they presented a clear danger to motorists, riders, and pedestrians. Mayor de Blasio said that Revel agreed to suspend operations after meeting with him on July 28.

Before its suspension, Revel allowed anyone 21 and older to operate the scooter when they provide a valid driver’s license and pay a small fee. No one younger than 18 was allowed to ride on the moped. New York City requires riders to wear helmets within city limits, but many Revel riders were often spotted without the helmets provided with each scooter.

The suspension comes just weeks after Revel suspended 1,000 New York City riders for not cooperating with the company’s safety guidelines. Prior to the suspension, Revel told the New York Times that Kapur’s death was the first fatality the company had seen in over 3 million rides.

Call a New York City Personal Injury Lawyer

If you have been injured in an accident involving a Revel scooter, the attorneys at Hach & Rose, LLP want to help you win the compensation you deserve. Despite the challenges presented by the COVID-19 pandemic, the team at Hach & Rose, LLP is still poised and ready to fight for your rights and the compensation that you deserve.

If you or a loved one has suffered because of someone else’s reckless or negligent actions, please reach out to the New York personal injury attorneys at Hach & Rose, LLP. Call us at (212) 779-0057 or make an appointment online to consult with a member of our legal team today.

Street-Racers in New York City Take Advantage of Empty Highways

New York City is battling the coronavirus pandemic and all of its unexpected consequences, including street-racers speeding down nearly-empty stretches of road.

Since the city issued stay-at-home orders to flatten the curve of the virus’s spread, the roads have been much emptier than usual. For some New Yorkers, this presented the opportunity to use long stretches of highway as a racetrack, according to an article from Patch.

Specifically, residents in Tribeca complain of about 30 cars and motorcycles racing up and down a mile-long stretch of the West Side Highway. Residents near the roadway say they hear loud revving engines at all hours of the day and late into the night.

Impact of Coronavirus on Driving Safety

These street-racers pose a danger to nearby pedestrians and other drivers on the road. Between 2013 and 2016, there were over 44,000 pedestrian accidents in New York City. Because Mayor Bill de Blasio instructed residents to stay home, there are likely more pedestrians out than usual. Since many people can’t go to school or to work, many have turned to daily walks to get fresh air and exercise. With more pedestrians out and about comes a greater risk of accidents occurring, especially when reckless drivers are present.

Speeding drivers pose a threat to non-racing drivers on these roads, too. The New York Police Department reported 3,922 car accidents in Manhattan in 2018. This number is likely to spike with dangerous drivers on the road. Additionally, there are fewer police officers to respond to complaints about racers because their energy is focused on handling COVID-19. According to Patch, over 7,000 NYPD officers are currently out sick. This is 20% of their police force. The remaining officers must keep themselves available to respond to COVID-19-related calls.

If you are injured in a pedestrian or car accident because of someone else’s reckless driving, you can and should take legal action against them. You should not have to suffer financially because of another person’s negligence. The drivers who are taking advantage of the empty roadways created as a result of COVID-19 are knowingly breaking the law and could cause a tragic accident.

Contact a New York Accident Attorney

You should never have to face the challenges of a car accident alone. You may need help navigating the costs of car repairs, lost wages, medical bills, and pain and suffering. The legal team at Hach & Rose, LLP is here to help you, even during these difficult times.

Given the coronavirus pandemic, we have taken a proactive approach to protecting our clients and employees. We are able to provide the same high-quality service that you have come to expect. We offer online consultations and are here to answer your calls, emails, or messages, so don’t hesitate to contact us. Call (212) 779-0057.

Wilton, NY – Man Charged with Rape of 16-Year-Old Girl

Wilton, NY – Man Charged with Rape of 16-Year-Old Girl

Wilton, NY (July 5, 2019) – State police have announced the arrest of a man from Wilton who has been accused of rape. William Traver, 39, has been charged with the rape of a 16-year-old girl after police arrested him at his home on Friday, July 5th.


Dunkirk, NY – Woman Taken to Hospital After Hit by Neighbor’s Firework

Dunkirk, NY – Woman Taken to Hospital After Hit by Neighbor’s Firework

Dunkirk, NY (July 5, 2019) – A fireworks accident that happened on Thursday, the Fourth of July, left a woman injured in the town of Dunkirk, according to authorities. Police stated that a woman was hit with a firework on Bayshore Drive at approximately 10:15 p.m.


Florence, NY – Police Investigating Cause of Deadly Motorcycle Accident on Wolcott Hill Road

Florence, NY – Police Investigating Cause of Deadly Motorcycle Accident on Wolcott Hill Road

Florence, NY (July 5, 2019) – On Friday, July, 5th, police were immediately called to the scene of a fatal motorcycle crash that took place on Wolcott Hill Road in the town of Florence. According to State Police in Sylvan Beach, 26-year-old Brandon E. Humphrey, of Camden, tragically lost his life in the accident that occurred at 1:08 p.m.


Bulls Head, NY – Injuries Sustained Following Two-Vehicle Crash in Staten Island

Bulls Head, NY – Injuries Sustained Following Two-Vehicle Crash in Staten Island

Bulls Head, NY (July 5, 2019) – A two-car crash in the Bulls Head neighborhood of Staten Island ended with injuries on Friday, July 5th, according to firefighters who were called to the scene. The crash occurred at approximately 3:33 p.m. at the intersection of Victory Boulevard and Goller Place for reasons that are being investigated.


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