With all the attention slip and fall accidents on New York City sidewalks get in the wintertime, it's often easy to overlook the dangers on pedestrian and bike paths across the numerous bridges throughout the Five Boroughs. In the winter months, snow and ice can make the Brooklyn, Manhattan, Williamsburg, and Queensboro Bridges extremely hazardous.
While building owners have a responsibility to clear away snow, ice, and other debris from sidewalks adjacent to their properties to prevent accidents, the Parks Department has a responsibility to prevent snow related sidewalk accidents in New York City's public parks. That obligation to clear away snow and ice extends to the pathways and bike paths on Parks Department property as well. However, a number of New Yorkers have complained to the popular street-safety blog, Streets Blog, that the Parks Department is failing to maintain safe conditions in the face of an onslaught of winter storms in the Big Apple.
Accidents on snow and ice covered sidewalks across New York cost residents and visitors millions in medical expenses, lost wages and more. These treacherous surfaces are the responsibility of property owners or the City itself and legally must be cleared within a given time frame. If you slip and fall on a slippery sidewalk, the abutting property owner or the City could be held legally responsible for your injuries, medical expenses and lost wages.
This season's record snowfalls up and down the Eastern Seaboard and interior New York serve as a reminder that winter weather can make living and working in New York City treacherous at best. Several states east of the Mississippi have already recorded the most snowfall ever in November (with Upstate New York receiving up to seven feet of snow in some places) While many of the injuries and deaths this season have been caused either by roof collapses or automobile accidents on slick roadways, improperly cleared sidewalk are just as dangerous for pedestrians. In fact, snow and ice covered sidewalk accidents in New York (most typically slip and fall accidents) contribute to one of the top 10 causes of emergency room visits in the Big Apple-sprains and broken bones.
Public and private swimming pools across the city provide the perfect opportunity to enjoy the summer and beat the heat with family and friends. But pool accidents in New York City claim the lives of unsuspecting victims every year-senseless losses that, for the most part, could be avoided with the proper equipment, maintenance, and supervision.
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.
Knee surgery in New York is a common medical procedure performed for a variety of different reasons but one of the most common is to repair damaged caused in an auto or slip and fall accident. Car accidents are notoriously disastrous for people's knees as most vehicles are designed to place the lower portion of your legs under the dashboard and steering wheel. When the front crumple zones of vehicles work as they should, the front section of the car folds in, often causing the dash to collapse and impact or even trap the legs of passengers within.
In New York, slip and fall accidents are one of the most common causes for injury. The number of those accidents dramatically increases in the winter months. By how much? In recent weeks New York emergency rooms have seen a 300 percent increase in winter-related injuries (most from slip and fall accidents involving ice and snow covered surfaces)-well over four hundred during the last week of January and first week of February alone. The danger is so bad that the New York Times ran yet another article warning New Yorkers about the hazards of icy streets, sidewalks, stairwells, and walkways.
In addition to being the causal factor in many motor vehicle crashes, the presence of snow and ice is a major contributing factor to slip and fall accidents in New York City. Every winter slick spots on pedestrian walkways and building entryways can-in a second-cause irreparable damage and lifelong disability. However, the Department of Buildings warns that those aren't the only safety risks caused by inclement weather and dropping temperatures. Falling snow and ice can cause severe injuries and even kill pedestrians or cyclists within city limits.
Winter storms can turn any New York City sidewalk into a sheet of ice or a slippery slush-coated slide. Regardless of how careful you are, slip and fall accidents do occur. Falling on an icy sidewalk can result in serious injuries, pain and suffering, and significant lost time from work.