A group of street safety advocates petitioned newly inaugurated President Biden to enact a plan that would entirely eliminate road deaths in the U.S. by 2050. A coalition of 74 street safety organizations, including AAA, Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD), National Safety Council, and League of American Bicyclists, cosigned a letter to the White House on Jan. 20. The letter brought to Biden’s attention the nearly 40,000 deaths that happen on the nation’s roads each year.
The organizations appealed to Biden’s personal connection to loss, referencing his wife and daughter who died in a car accident in 1972, writing, “You know all too well the pain and devastation that comes when someone is killed in a crash.” They asked his administration to make a commitment to fully eliminate street deaths in the next 30 years.
Vision Zero is a street safety program that was first implemented in Sweden in the 1990s. The program aims to eliminate traffic fatalities and serious injuries while also enforcing measures to increase safety on roads. Vision Zero views traffic deaths as preventable, not an inevitable part of transportation. Some cities in the U.S., including Austin, Seattle, Washington D.C., San Francisco, and Boston, have committed to their own Vision Zero plans, but the letter urges Biden to make traffic safety a top national priority and cut down on fatalities.
Vision Zero’s Road Map to a Safer Future
To achieve its goal of zero traffic fatalities, Vision Zero advocates for fundamental changes in the way people interact with and think about transportation. For example, speeding kills about 10,000 people each year, which is about as many fatalities caused by drunk driving. But the penalties for speeding are much less severe than they are for drunk driving. One of Vision Zero’s key priorities is to reduce speeding “through safe street design, automated speed enforcement (or safety cameras), and setting safe speed limits.” Design, individual road users, and safety components (like traffic signs) are the three elements of street safety.
But Vision Zero is not only focused on drivers and passengers in cars. Pedestrian and bicyclist safety is also a top priority. U.S. pedestrian fatalities were at their lowest in 2009, totaling only 4,109. However, ten years later, this number hit a 30-year-high at 6,590 deaths. Biden’s Transportation Secretary nominee Pete Buttigieg mentioned the importance of implementing more pedestrian- and cyclist-centered street design moving forward. Changing street design from auto-centric to pedestrian-centric will be a challenge for Buttigieg after he is sworn into office.
Contact a New York Car Accident Lawyer
If you were injured in a car crash as a driver, passenger, or pedestrian, you may be entitled to financial compensation. Please call the New York car accident attorneys at Hach & Rose, LLP to learn how our team may be able to help you. We’ll do the legal legwork so you can focus on healing. Call us at (212) 779-0057 today.
The coronavirus pandemic hit New York City especially hard in the first few months that the virus spread across the United States. Traffic on the streets mirrored the logical trend of more people staying home and only going out when necessary – it decreased dramatically. But the New York Times reported a troubling statistic emerged alongside this trend. There were more deadly car accidents in 2020 than usual in the city.
This is despite the fact that Mayor Bill de Blasio enacted a plan in 2014 to increasingly improve safety on the streets, named Vision Zero. This plan aimed to completely eliminate traffic-related deaths in the city by 2024. With the upward trend of accidents occurring during the pandemic, this goal is becoming more unrealistic. But how did this happen?
The New York Times suggested that because New Yorkers felt isolated, cramped, and bored in their homes while attempting to shield themselves from the virus, they took to the streets to blow off some steam and recapture their freedom. This translated to a higher number of motorcycle riders and street racers on the roads than the city normally sees on an average night.
Because of this increased trend in reckless driving, car and motorcycle accident-related deaths rose 76% in one year. In 2019, the city recorded 68 motor vehicle deaths. But in 2020, that number rose to 120. However, the article reported that the number of pedestrian- and bicycle-related deaths dropped in 2020, related to past years.
NY Mirrors a National Trend
So, even though the city streets are still not as crowded as they were before the pandemic, they likely still have more reckless drivers on them than on an average, pre-pandemic day. However, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reported that in 2020, traffic-related deaths increased across the nation. This federal agency recorded traffic-related deaths in all states and found that the coronavirus pandemic is likely connected to this higher number of deaths on our streets.
Elderly and older people tended to stay home more often than younger people as the virus gained a chokehold on the country. Older people are generally more cautious, slower drivers, and therefore tend to cause fewer traffic accidents due to speeding. But younger, more adventurous drivers tend to cause accidents while speeding or driving recklessly. And because young people had less incentive to stay home during the pandemic, they were more likely to be on the roads.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration also believes that an increase in drug and alcohol usage during the pandemic is a factor in increased accidents. While Americans turned to substances to cope with the stress of the pandemic – from unemployment to a sickness in the family to strained finances – substance-related traffic accidents spiked across the nation.
Contact a New York Accident Lawyer
If you were injured in a motorcycle or car accident in the New York City area, do not hesitate to reach out to the accident attorneys at Hach & Rose, LLP immediately. Our lawyers have years of experience handling cases like yours and will fight to win the maximum compensation for you. Call us today at (212) 779-0057.
One New York City woman’s death caused by falling debris has shined a light on safety infractions of hundreds of other city buildings, according to The New York Times.
Sixty-year-old architect Erica L. Tishman was killed after a piece of debris fell from a building she was walking past in December of 2019. The city’s Department of Buildings issued the owners of the 17-story office building a fine in April of that year because the terra cotta facade above the 15th floor was deteriorating and could potentially break off, putting pedestrians in danger. Himmel + Meringoff Properties, the building’s owner, paid the $1,250 fine but apparently did not repair the problem.
After Tishman’s death, the Department of Buildings launched surprise inspections at the city’s buildings, finding 220 other structures in violation. The Department issued a number of Class 1 facade violations, which are “immediately hazardous” to pedestrians but are not necessarily major violations. Class 1 violations include loose masonry, bricks, or stones on the building’s exterior, or cracks in its facade that could injure passersby.
Falling debris, whether from a construction site or from shoddy masonry, can potentially pose serious health risks to workers or pedestrians. As was the case with Tishman, who died before first responders even arrived at the scene, head injuries are the most common and most severe results of falling debris. The victim might experience a traumatic brain injury such as a concussion or contusion, paralysis, a spinal cord injury, or even blindness. They might also need treatment for cuts, bruises, broken bones, and neck injuries.
When someone is injured on another person’s property, due to the property owner’s willful negligence or irresponsibility, the victim or victim’s family can file a premises liability lawsuit. In this type of suit, the plaintiff must show that:
- they were on the defendant’s property legally
- the property owner should have known about the dangerous condition that caused the accident but for some reason didn’t fix it or provide ample warning
- the property owner’s negligence caused the victim’s injury
When a pedestrian is injured by a falling object, they are eligible to file a premises liability lawsuit to win compensation for medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering. If the pedestrian died because of their injury, their family may choose to file a wrongful death lawsuit.
Contact a New York Pedestrian Accident Attorney
If you were injured by a piece of falling debris, you might be eligible to file a premises liability lawsuit against the property owner. The attorneys at Hach & Rose, LLP have years of experience representing injured pedestrians and want to help you recover the compensation you deserve. Call Hach & Rose, LLP or contact us online to receive a free consultation.
As one of the most populous cities in the world, New York’s streets are clogged with pedestrians and motorists day and night. Because the two are constantly in close proximity, accidents happen frequently, and often with devastating results. Among the possible causes of pedestrian accidents in New York City, some of the most common include:
- Speeding — Drivers often strike child pedestrians when they are going too fast through residential areas.
- Failure to Maintain Vehicle — Drivers may cause crashes because they did not properly maintain their vehicles, causing sudden mechanical issues.
- Defective Highways — Governmental entities could be responsible for some accidents caused by dangerous highways.
- Failure to Obey Traffic Signs or Lights — Drivers often strike pedestrians when they do not acknowledge traffic lights or signs.
- Distracted Driving — Drivers may not see pedestrians when they are distracted by cell phones, climate controls, or in-vehicle navigation systems.
- Driving While Intoxicated (DWI) — Drivers who cause accidents because they were under the influence of drugs or alcohol will often face criminal charges, but such cases are completely separate from civil actions.
- Improper or Illegal Turns — Drivers who perform certain unauthorized turns can inadvertently strike child pedestrians.
- Inclement Weather — Any kind of unfavorable weather makes pedestrians more difficult to see, especially children.
- Reckless Driving — A person commits the offense of reckless driving if they drive a vehicle in willful or wanton disregard for the safety of persons or property.
- Driver Fatigue — Drivers who are struggling to stay awake can be more likely to cause pedestrian accidents.
- Defective Parts — Some vehicles malfunction because certain parts fail, and manufacturers can be liable for defective parts.
- Other Traffic Violations — A number of other New York traffic law violations can also cause pedestrian accidents.
Contact a Pedestrian Accident Attorney in New York
If you were severely injured while walking as a pedestrian in New York City, Hach & Rose, LLP can help you get justice. We will seek the maximum compensation possible from the negligent motorist who caused you harm. Time is limited to take legal action, so contact us at (212) 779-0057 to schedule your free, no-obligation consultation right away.
A report by localize.city, a website that analyzes street safety to give buyers and renters the full picture before they move, found that at least a dozen areas across the five New York City boroughs are significantly more dangerous. Alarmingly, in these 12 areas, pedestrians and cyclists are three times more likely to face injury or death from getting struck by a vehicle.
On average, these intersections saw about 238 crashes in the past five years involving cyclists and pedestrians, compared to the city’s average of 75. The researchers found that intersections under bridges or elevated tracks were significantly more dangerous than other streets.
- The area around the bridge in the south side of Williamsburg
- The intersection of Myrtle Avenue and Wyckoff Street in Ridgewood
- The border between University Heights and Fordham around Jerome Avenue
- The area between Atlantic Avenue and Willoughby Street
- The area between Pacific and Fulton streets, from Bedford to Brooklyn avenues
- Lower East Side/Little Italy/Soho: concentrated around Delancey/Kenmare Street
- Corona: general boundaries between 35th and Roosevelt Avenues, from 94th to 108th streets
- Jackson Heights: general boundaries between 37th Avenue and Broadway, from 76th Street to 84th Street/Whitney Avenue
- Flushing: general boundaries between College Point Avenue and Parsons Boulevard, from 37th to Franklin avenues
- Jamaica: general boundaries between 89th to 90th avenues, from 164th Street to 168th Place
- St. George/Tompkinsville: general boundaries from Jersey to Bay streets, between Victory Boulevard to Fort Place/Taft Avenue
- Stapleton: general boundaries between Bay and Van Duzer streets, from Wright to Tompkins streets
The heavy concentration of vehicles on New York City’s streets combined with the low visibility in areas directly under or around bridges can spell disaster for people trying to cross the street, either by foot or by bicycle. Take extra precautions in these areas of the city and call an attorney if you have been injured.
Contact a New York personal injury attorney
If you have been injured as a pedestrian or cyclist in New York, Hach & Rose, LLP can help you get justice and fair compensation. Our team has years of experience handling these types of cases and wants to help you win the compensation you deserve. Call our office at (347) 318-9604 or reach out online to discuss your legal options today.
According to a 2019 study by JAMA Pediatrics, Halloween is one of the most dangerous nights to be a pedestrian. In the United States, children are more than twice as likely to be involved in fatal car accidents as pedestrians, and the risk increases on Halloween as trick or treaters take to the streets. Research shows that from 1975 to 2016, a total of 608 pedestrians died on Halloween night. Children aged 12 to 15 are the most vulnerable subgroup, accounting for 32% of all child fatalities, while children aged 5 to 8 accounted for 23%.
Many factors can contribute to the increased pedestrian fatality rates on Halloween night, including darker evenings, vision-impairing costumes, and negligent drivers. To remain safe this holiday, it’s extremely important to be aware of the potential risks your children might face, and how they can be avoided.
60% of fatal accidents occurred between the hours of 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. Almost 70% of these accidents took place in the middle of the road when pedestrians weren’t using crosswalks at intersections. Additionally, young drivers between the ages of 15 to 25 posed the greatest risk to child pedestrians, accounting for almost one-third of all serious accidents on Halloween.
To ensure the safety of child pedestrians while out trick-or-treating, here are some tips that parents and guardians can follow:
- Young children should always be accompanied by a responsible adult when walking around in neighborhoods
- Both children and adults should put away their smartphones to minimize distraction and remain aware of their surroundings
- To increase night-time visibility, place reflective tape on children’s costumes
- Avoid costumes with masks that can obstruct a child’s vision
- Always use crosswalks at intersections
Here are some tips that drivers can follow to ensure the safety of child pedestrians on Halloween night:
- Move cautiously through neighborhoods where children may be trick-or-treating
- Watch for children wearing dark clothing during the evening
- Young, inexperienced drivers should not be encouraged to operate a vehicle
- Do not operate a vehicle after consuming alcohol
While Halloween should be a fun holiday for the whole family, serious and fatal injury accidents, unfortunately, can and do occur.
Call a New York Pedestrian Accident Attorney
Drivers have a responsibility to watch out for pedestrians, and they should be particularly cautious on Halloween when children are commonly out and about on busy streets, sidewalks, and intersections. A driver who fails to operate their vehicle responsibly and harms a child could be held liable for the injuries they cause.
Did a distracted, intoxicated, or otherwise negligent driver cause your child harm on Halloween? If so, the New York pedestrian accident lawyers of Hach & Rose, LLP will stand up for your family and will demand justice. Call us at (212) 779-0057 or fill out a contact form to discuss how we can help you during a free, no-obligation consultation.
Dongan Hills, NY (July 3, 2019) – NYPD officers were quickly summoned to the scene of a pedestrian crash with a motor vehicle that took place on Tuesday afternoon, July 2nd. The incident occurred at approximately 1:25 p.m. at the intersection of Hylan Boulevard and Jefferson Avenue in the Dongan Hills section of Staten Island.
North Greenbush, NY (July 2, 2019) – A pedestrian accident that took place in North Greenbush on Saturday evening, June 29th, is currently being investigated by authorities. Police stated that the incident, which left a 14-year-old girl with injuries, happened around 5:45 p.m. at the intersection of Route 4 and Williams Road.
Tonawanda, NY (July 2, 2019) – On Monday evening, July 1st, a woman was struck and injured by a truck in front of Mississippi Mudds on Niagara Street in Tonawanda. The incident was reported to have taken place around 6:45 p.m., according to authorities.
Katonah, NY (July 1, 2019) – A tragic mishap took place on Sunday, June 30th, that resulted in the death of a woman in the town of Katonah. Police stated that the incident happened on Anderson Road at approximately 3:37 p.m.
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