New York City Premises Liability Law Blog

Problems can sometimes come up in connection to sidewalk sheds

Things designed to help with one type of safety problem can sometimes give rise to their own unique problems. Take sidewalk sheds for example. These structures, also referred to as sidewalk scaffolding, can play a very important role in keeping pedestrians safe from falling objects when construction is being done on a building or there is a significant problem with a building’s facade. Given how harmful falling object accidents can be, preventing them can be critical.

However, there are certain things that could cause sidewalks sheds to go from being an important safety protection to a generator of significant problems.

Slip-and-fall accidents and the statute of limitations

While some people in New York are looking forward to a winter wonderland during this holiday season, they must keep in mind that ice and snow pose dangers not just to drivers on the roadways, but also to pedestrians walking on the streets and sidewalks. One slip-and-fall accident can lead to serious injuries, perhaps necessitating a lengthy hospital stay and extensive rehabilitation.

When a person is injured in a slip-and-fall accident, their main priority is healing from their injuries. However, as the medical bills mount and they are unable to go to work, their finances may soon be stretched tight. When this happens, they may want to pursue a personal injury lawsuit to seek compensation for the damages suffered.

Trees and sidewalk safety

Many things could potentially create tripping hazards out on sidewalks. Among these are trees and where their roots end up growing. This can be seen in complaints a woman in Brooklyn has leveled regarding a city-planted tree near her home.

Purportedly, the roots of this elm tree have lifted some of the concrete on the sidewalk outside the woman's home up around two or three inches. The woman has expressed multiple concerns about this, including:

  • Safety concerns: The woman says there have been tripping incidents in relation to a raised edge created by the lifted concrete. Reportedly, the woman has put paint on the edge to try to make it more visible to people.
  • Security concerns: The raised edge purportedly has made it so the woman can no longer fully close the security gate that leads to her home.
  • Legal-related concerns: The woman has expressed worry that the raised concrete might result in accidents that expose her to litigation.

Falling objects are a serious hazard on construction sites

Objects dropped from work sites injured more than 52,000 people in the past year, according to the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration. That averages to about 143 people a day or one person every ten minutes reporting an injury due to an object falling on them.

Moving walkways: The future of urban transportation?

Anyone who regularly travels by air has likely encountered their share of moving sidewalks. However, outside of airports and a few other contexts, these walkways aren't a major part of everyday transportation. Might this change in the future?

A recent study done by a research team in Switzerland looked at the potential of moving walkways to serve as an alternative to automobile travel in urban centers. In the study, researchers designed a moving sidewalk system for the Swiss city of Geneva in which moving walkways would replace roads on primary travel routes in the city. The study also estimated the potential capacity of urban moving sidewalks to be 7,000 passengers an hour.

Handrails can play a key role in preventing falls

Older individuals can be susceptible to falls. Seniors can suffer serious injuries when they fall. There are many things that can impact a senior's fall risk in a certain area. One is the handrail situation in that area. Properly placed handrails are among the things that can help seniors avoid falls during activities such as walking and going from floor to floor.

Take action if you were injured on Black Friday

Black Friday is the one day of the year when shopping is especially dangerous. People turn out in droves to purchase items on their wishlist at incredible discounts, and the desire to get those deals sometimes brings out the worst in people. Pushing, shoving and serious disorder during these sales can lead to accidents that cause injuries.

People who are injured in Black Friday accidents have the same right to seek compensation as those who are injured in accidents on any other day of the year. These victims have the same responsibilities as well.

Know your options for seeking compensation after a fall

The autumn and winter months are dangerous times to walk on sidewalks. We discussed this issue in our previous blog post. When hazards of the season, or any other hazards, aren't cleared from the walkways in a suitable manner, it is possible that people can fall and get hurt. If you are injured in a fall on a sidewalk, you might opt to seek compensation for the injuries. We can help you to explore your options for doing this.

We know that you are probably focusing on the treatment plan your doctor has provided for the injuries you suffered. That is exactly where your focus should be after the accident; however, if you opt to seek compensation, you will need to take action within a certain amount of time.

Staying safe when out shopping on Black Friday

Black Friday is now just a few days away. This day sees large numbers of shoppers stream to stores throughout the country to do their holiday shopping and to take advantage of the Black Friday specials stores offer.

Now, on Black Friday, finding good deals is not the only thing that is important. So too is staying safe. Given the high volume of shoppers out on Black Friday, that a lot of the shopping on this day happens while it is dark outside, that there can be a lot of potential distractions out there on Black Friday and that this day can give rise to some chaotic situations, some special safety concerns can arise on this shopping day.

How security personnel respond to panics matters

One of the important roles security personnel can play is responding when events occur which could impact the safety of people in the area they are working security in. One example of such an event is a crowd panicking. In such a panic, security workers may be able to help calm things down and keep people safe.

Unfortunately though, if security workers respond in an improper manner to the panic, they could end up making the situation worse, rather than better. A recent report suggests that the actions of security personnel in a panic that happened in an airport here in New York earlier this year actually furthered the panic.

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