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Who is Responsible for Gas Explosions in New York City?

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You may remember the New York City explosion that killed eight and injured 50 people in Harlem. An investigation into the incident, which happened about 18 months ago, revealed that the explosion was caused by a leaking sewer pipe and an improperly welded join in a gas pipe.

The sewer link caused the earth under the gas pipe to subside. The gas pipe began to bend because the earth that had previously supported it was gone. The bend was at the site of a join with bad welding that ultimately cracked, releasing natural gas into the surrounding earth and utilities.

Question: Will Right of Way Law Protect Pedestrians in New York City? Partt 2 of 2.?

Answer: Not right away. The law faces challenges from unions and in Albany. 

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In addition to the 2015 bus accidents reported in the previous blog post, nine people were killed in 2014 bus accidents. The need to improve this story state of affairs was enshrined in the mayor's Vision Zero, which aims to end traffic fatalities altogether and is based on the belief that traffic crashes are not "accidents."

The Right of Way law was developed and passed as part of Vision Zero. This law makes it a misdemeanor crime to injure or kill a pedestrian a pedestrian in a crosswalk. Although this law makes sense as part of the overall effort to eliminate traffic deaths, it has become controversial, especially among bus drivers.

Construction Worker Falls to His Death Down Elevator Shaft in Hells Kitchen, New York

On August 25, 2015, at approximately 12:40 p.m., a 30-year-old construction worker fell to his death when wooden boards covering an elevator shaft gave way, causing him to plummet four stories down into the basement of 577 Ninth Avenue, near the corner of 42nd Street in the Hells Kitchen section of Manhattan. The victim was found by police unconscious and unresponsive in several feet of water in the basement and was immediately rushed to Bellevue Hospital where he was pronounced dead. According to reports, the victim was not wearing a safety harness while walking along the wooden boards.

Fatal Error Costs Pilot Joseph Milo His Life

small airplane.jpgAn inexcusable mistake by an air traffic controller led to the death of pilot Joseph Milo earlier this month, according to reports released by the NTSB. The air traffic controller directed the pilot, who was operating a plane that was experiencing some mechanical difficulties, to a landing strip that no longer exists. Instead of being directed to a safe area, the air traffic controller directed Milo to land in an area which is now occupied by an industrial building. The confusion lead to a failed emergency landing on a LIRR track, killing the pilot and injuring the passenger. Senseless.

Question: Will Right of Way Law Protect Pedestrians in New York City? Part 1 of 2.

Answer: Not right away. The law faces challenges from unions and in Albany. 

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There have been several bus-pedestrian accidents in recent weeks resulting in injuries to the pedestrians. Descriptions of the accidents make for somewhat gruesome reading, but they also raise important issues about the safety of pedestrians in New York City. The remainder of this post describes some of the most recent bus incidents that hurt or killed pedestrians. Our next post will outline some of the challenges the city faces in implementing the Right of Way Law as it applies to buses. 

Car Accidents or Car Crashes? Two NYC Groups Push for Word Change.

car accident.jpgWhen one car hits another, or a bus plows into a pedestrian, or a taxi runs up on the sidewalk, we call such incidents "accidents." This blog often refers to events like these as truck or auto accidents. But in most cases, killing a bicyclist or smashing into a stop sign are not accidents, at least according to two New York City nonprofits, Transportation Alternatives and Families for Safe Streets.

Thinking That Semi-Truck Laws Don't Matter in NYC? Think Again.

semi truck.jpgAn editorial appeared in the New York Times on July 21, 2015, decrying two transportation bills pending in Congress. If passed, the bills will make highways around the United States because each makes the safe operation of large trucks far less certain.

Firm Partners Named to 'Best Lawyers in America' List

download.jpgbest lawyers in america.jpgPartners Jeffrey Block, Daniel O'Toole and Stephen Murphy of the New York City personal injury law firm Block O'Toole & Murphy have once again been named to the 'Best Lawyers in America' list. The Best Lawyers honor was founded in 1981 to identify prominent lawyers in a particular field. Inclusion on the list is an exclusive and coveted distinction, according to well-known attorneys across the country. In fact, The American Lawyer describes it as "The most respected list of attorneys in practice."

Statistics About Traffic Safety in New York City Can be Misleading

trafficjam.jpgIt will probably come as no surprise to New York City residents that New York is the worst city in the United States for driving., according to one study. Part of the calculation is based on gas prices; New York has some of the highest prices at the fuel pump. They are also the most likely to get parking tickets and have their cars towed. Moreover, the streets in New York are full of potholes, which make maintaining a vehicle costly.

Roundabouts Added to Reduce Motor Vehicle Accidents


We usually think of roundabouts as a feature of European roadways. However, the four-way stop that once was popular among American traffic engineers may become a thing of the past. Today's engineers favor the roundabout because it reduces congestion and keeps traffic moving - safely.

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