If you live and/or work in New York City or the surrounding areas, chances are you’ve spent a lot of time on public transportation. Without the subways, buses, trains, and ferries that get us around the city, life would be much more difficult and the streets would be even more packed with cars. But with the aging infrastructure, crowded facilities, and natural dangers presented by the rails and buses, the city’s public transportation system is also the site of dozens of injuries and deaths each year. If you are one of the many people injured on public transportation in or around New York City, you may be be entitled to recover money, however, depending on the circumstances of the injury.
What Caused the Injury?
The first step is looking at what actually caused your injury. There can be a multitude of factors but usually there is one or two primary reasons for an accident. If the injury was caused by a defect with the vehicle or tracks itself, or by the actions of anyone working for the transportation agency (e.g. an operator, driver, dispatcher, maintenance person, etc.), then there is a high likelihood of recovery. For example, if your bus driver negligently drives the bus into an accident, causing your injury, then you will have a strong case for recovery against the transportation agency.
Even where the accident was not directly caused by the transportation agency, you may still have a valid claim. If there was a dangerous condition that caused your injury that the transportation agency should have remedied but did not – for example, if a rider dropped oil all over a platform, no one cleaned it up for hours, and you slipped on it – then you could have a valid claim. Even if someone commits a crime against you on public transportation, you may have a claim if the agency was negligent in maintaining security.
Did You Play a Role in Causing the Injury?
Oftentimes, the rider himself might be said to have played a role in causing the injury. For example, if you ran to catch the train and stumbled over equipment left on the platform, causing you to be injured, the court might find that both you and the agency were both negligent. In such cases, you as an injured plaintiff are not necessarily blocked from bringing a case. Instead the court will weigh your negligence with the negligence of the agency in determining an appropriate award.
What Are Your Injuries?
It may go without saying, but, in order to recover on a negligence claim for injuries sustained on public transportation, you will need to prove the full extent of your injuries and their costs either during settlement negotiations or leading to trial. If you have suffered injuries, you can recover for the cost of your medical bills, including rehabilitation and physical therapy, as well as time that you missed from work, damage to your career, and pain and suffering. Proving the full extent of these injuries can be difficult, and defendants will push back hard on your claims, so it is important to contact a personal injury attorney as soon as possible after the injury occurs to begin the process of bringing your claim.
Get Assistance with Your Public Transportation Injury Claim
If you have been injured on public transportation, do not hesitate to work with a personal injury attorney who solely represents your interests and will work to get you the maximum amount of compensation available to you. Attorney Justin Brandel represents victims of public transportation injuries across New York City, and will fight to get you the compensation you deserve. Call his office today to set up a free consultation.
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