In 2008, a tragic accident on the subway stairs resulted in a 61-year old Williamsburg grandmother lying at the bottom of the stairs, bleeding from her brain. Days later, seizures wracked her body as she lay in a Bellevue Hospital bed, slowly stealing her ability to communicate with loved ones and leaving her bedridden, totally dependent on others for care.
Maria Alcantara was on her way to meet her husband after her shift at a Williamsburg factory where she had worked for 18 years. Mrs. Alcantara tripped on a crack in the concrete at the top of the subways stairs and fell, cracking her head against the cement then tumbling down the flight of stairs.
She was rushed to the hospital suffering from a traumatic brain injury. Within days, she was unable to communicate verbally and in the years since she has become bedridden and totally unable to care for herself.
Accidents on the subway stairs in New York are often overshadowed by accidents on the subway platforms or tracks. However, as Mrs. Alcantara’s case points out, these accidents can be just as tragic. If such an accident is caused by disrepair or neglect, individuals or their surviving loved ones can file a lawsuit in New York seeking monetary damages for medical expenses, lost wages and pain and suffering.
The lawsuit filed on behalf of Mrs. Alcantara was contested by the MTA and New York City Transit Authority (the agencies responsible for maintaining the underground including stair surfaces and stairway lighting). However, photographic evidence showed an inches deep gash in the concrete at the top of the subway stairs. This evidence went a long way toward convincing a jury that the agencies were responsible for her accident-especially since the New York City Transit Authority documentation shows the gouge was recorded two months prior to the accident.
Early last month Mrs. Alcantara was awarded $16 million after a jury ruled the MTA was 100% liable for her accident.
If you or a loved one has been injured in an accident on the subway stairs in New York City, contact a New York transit accident attorney today for a consultation. Call the Law Offices of Nussin S. Fogel for a free consultation at (800) 734-9338 or (212) 385-1122 to learn your rights.