The sprawling New York subway system carries over four million passengers every day. While the vast majority of the daily trips go uninterrupted, New York subway accidents, by their very nature, can be tragic and life-altering. While the subway system — in conjunction with strenuous efforts of the MTA and Transit Police — has made huge strides toward making the underground safer for workers and passengers alike, an alarming amount of tragic (and preventable) deaths and injuries occur every year.
Tragic NYC Subway Worker Accidents
Between 1946 and 2007, 238 NYC transit workers were killed in subway accidents — that’s an average of almost four workers per year. However, over half that number died prior to 1960 when safety rules and regulations were dramatically tightened. Still, on average, two subway workers are killed in accidents involving trains or tracks each year.
This just emphasizes what Transportation Workers Union Local 100 President John Samuelsen already knows: the subway lines that crisscross New York City create “an incredibly dangerous and unforgiving work environment.”
Subway workers must be on guard at all times and can’t trust in their safety to anyone but themselves.
Recent Fatal Queens and Long Island Subway Accidents
Since 2007, four high-profile subway accidents have claimed the lives of as many workers while several other accidents have involved injuries ranging from minor to severe.
- In April of 2007, 14-year subway veteran Daniel Boggs was killed in Columbus Circle when he accidentally stepped in front of the No. 3 Express train.
- Just a week later TWU worker and longtime Queens resident Marvin Franklin was struck by a train. A friend later reported that Franklin had been “almost run over by a train a few times.”
- In April of 2010 James Knell, a 13-year MTA veteran and nine-year maintenance supervisor, was electrocuted by the third rail near a Rockaway train station. An investigation revealed a safety covering on the rail was missing.
- In April of 2013 James Moore was killed after falling under the Queens-bound E Train. An investigation revealed part of the handrail along the walkway where Moore died was loose though officials have yet to determine if that played any part in the accident.
Contributing Factors to Fatal New York Subway Accidents
The privately owned NYSUBWAY.com states that the three major contributing factors to the vast majority of worker-related subway accidents in the city are:
- Being struck by moving trains
- Falls (either onto the tracks or from heights)
- Accidental electrocution (most often on the third rail)
- Clothing/bags being snagged by oncoming trains
In at least three of the fatal accidents above, workers or supervisors failed to obey safety precautions.
The Aftermath of a Subway Accident Can Ruin Lives — Protect Yours Today
If you or a loved one has been injured in a subway accident, contact an experienced transportation accident attorney today. Call the Law Offices of Nussin S. Fogel at 888-391-8546 or 212-385-1122 to schedule your free, no-obligation consultation now.