In spite of the fact that statistics show we are much safer using mass transportation than driving, mass transit accidents do occur, and when they do, they often affect very large numbers of people. Millions of passengers, not only from the five boroughs of New York City, but from commuter counties like Nassau, Suffolk, Westchester, and from parts of New Jersey, use New York City mass transit daily, and train, bus, subway, and ferry accidents are not as rare as we might hope. Not only do they injure passengers who are totally blameless; they sometimes injure those passengers catastrophically or cause their deaths.
If you have had the misfortune of suffering serious harm during a mass transit accident, you should consult with experienced accident attorneys with proven results. Scaffidi & Associates, conveniently located in Manhattan, is here to help you deal with your recent ordeal. We are experienced in complex negotiation and litigation procedures, and intent on helping you receive the compensation you deserve for your physical and emotional trauma, and financial losses. If you have experienced the tragic death of a loved one due to a mass transit accident, our knowledgeable attorneys are also well-prepared to guide you through a wrongful death lawsuit.
You May Need Our Legal Assistance More than You Know
In the immediate aftermath of a mass transit accident, most people are in pain, confused, and frightened. Of course the medical situation is by far the most urgent, but then the reality of the financial situation becomes apparent. In most cases, a serious injury means a prolonged period without income. It may even mean dealing with a permanent disability that interferes with current employment, possibly requiring retooling for a new position, or even retiring. With increased medical, rehabilitative, and homecare costs, the loss of income may threaten not only your lifestyle, but your ability to support your family.
Causes of a Mass Transit Accident
Although mass transit vehicles are regulated by various government agencies in terms of the maintenance and replacement of buses, trains, tracks, tunnels, and bridges, the infrastructure in New York is old and worn. This means that structural and mechanical defects are all too common. Causes of mass transit accidents include:
- Broken or defective equipment, including traffic and train signals
- Driver error or violations (e.g. distracted driving, ignoring signals, speeding)
- Driver impairment by alcohol or drugs
- Driver drowsiness or fatigue
- Incorrect structural design or engineering of equipment
Any one, or some combination, of these factors, may result in a vehicle-on-vehicle collision, a vehicle striking a pedestrian or bicyclist, derailment, explosion, mechanical malfunctions, or electrical problems. Passengers can also slip or be pushed onto subway or train platforms or tracks, get trapped between doors, or fall on icy bus steps. Chillingly, there is also the possibility that accidents involving public transportation can be the result of malice or intentional conduct. Many individuals have been assaulted, robbed, or even raped on mass transit vehicles.
Types of Injuries Suffered in a Mass Transit Accident
Because you do not have a seat belt or air bag on mass transit, injuries during an accident may be more severe than those resulting from traffic accidents. When crashes or derailments occur, especially at high speeds, passengers are unprotected and can easily collide with other passengers and broken metal. If fires break out or explosions occur, passengers may suffer serious burns. EMTs who deal with the aftermath of mass transit accidents report all types of severe injuries, including:
- Compound fractures
- Crush injuries
- Internal bleeding
- Spinal cord injuries
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Organ damage
Some of these critical injuries may be fatal; others may cause life-altering events, such as amputation, paralysis, or cognitive impairment.
Compensatory Damages Scaffidi & Associates May Obtain for You
Should you be injured in a mass transit accident, we will fight to get you compensatory damages for:
- Medical, surgical and rehabilitative costs
- Lost income (present and future)
- Property damage
- Physical pain
- Emotional suffering
- Permanent disability
In addition to compensatory damages, if the fault carries a degree of extreme negligence, such as uninspected or improperly maintained equipment or driver impairment, you may also be entitled to punitive damages designed to punish the guilty party and dissuade others from engaging in similarly awful misconduct.
Contact Our New York City Mass Transit Accident
As soon as you consult with Scaffidi & Associates’ highly capable mass transit attorneys, we will begin investigating all aspects of your case, in terms of what caused the accident, your physical injuries, your emotional trauma, and how prolonged your recovery is likely to be. This last item is crucial because when we ask for damages we have to estimate your costs, both present and future, as closely as possible.
We will look at police data, examine your medical records, interview witnesses, and, if necessary, take photographs of the site. We also have the resources to bring in technical and/or medical experts as courtroom witnesses at the time of trial.
The mass transit accident attorneys at Scaffidi & Associates not only have comprehensive knowledge of the regulations governing public transportation but are compassionate individuals. Our priority is to protect you from injustice and make sure you receive every dollar of compensation to which you are entitled. When you come to us, we will take over all the legal aspects of your case, providing you with the time you need to heal from your physical injuries and emotional trauma. You can reach us by phone or email, or by filling out one of the contact forms on our website.