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2007 Wrongful Death Suit Against MTA at a Standstill

A 58-year-old subway signalman and transit worker for the MTA was killed on the job on April 30, 2013. The man was walking back from an assignment he was given in a Queens tunnel. While en route to 46th Street in Woodside, he fell off of the benchwall (the narrow, elevated walkway beside the tracks) and onto the tracks directly in the path of an E train.

He had just completed an assignment in a Queens tunnel and was walking back to the nearest station, 46th St. in Woodside. He was walking on a narrow, elevated walkway called a benchwall that's parallel to the tracks. For some reason, as he reached the platform edge, he fell onto the tracks, and into the path of a Jamaica-bound E train.

Authorities are investigating the circumstances of the accident including whether safety protocols by workers and managers were followed.

Exactly six years before Mr. Moore's gruesome death, another MTA employee was also killed on the job. Believe it or not, the family of the deceased worker is still awaiting a decision from the Manhattan Supreme Court.

In this case, a train hit the MTA worker while he was setting up perimeter lighting for a construction job on an express track at the Columbus Circle/59th St. station.

Because it was under construction, that particular track was scheduled to be closed at 11 p.m. for workers to replace rails and ties while trains continued to run on parallel tracks. The train controllers did not follow these orders and instead decided to wait longer before closing off the track.

Without notifying this MTA worker, train controllers actually rerouted a train onto the express track where he was working. He went to work that day believing he would be safe, but instead was hit by a train that wasn't supposed to be there.

The man's family filed a wrongful death lawsuit which has been moving at a disturbingly slow pace since 2007. This could indicate the MTA's avoidance and intentional delaying of the process, which could be considered failure to cooperate.

While the MTA initially agreed to let the man's attorney and his investigation experts inspect the scene of the accident, that inspection was canceled. Why? It was found that one of the investigation experts had lost his certification and would have to be recertified before he investigated the accident scene. A lawyer representing the MTA claimed that the case is simply moving slow because they are short staffed.

The family's attorney wants to inspect Columbus Circle but also plans to recreate the scene as it was when the worker was killed so his experts can evaluate conditions like lighting. The MTA claims that the price to recreate this request would be $268,000. Lawyers for the family have scoffed that the price and are seeking the intervention of the court to determine a fair and less expensive solution.

Delay in litigation in the court system of New York State and especially the five boroughs have continued to frustrate attorneys for innocent victims. Defendants, their lawyers and their insurance companies seek to slow down cases as they fully know how desperate injured victims are to resole their cases and continue on with their lives. Often, injured victims lose significant time from their jobs and resulting pay and benefits during their cases. This puts them in economic distress.

Additionally, the court system is often overwhelmed with case volume. Recent budget cuts in the Supreme and Civil Courts of New York State has reduced the number of judges and clerks, bringing courtrooms and dockets to virtual standstills. The mix of over burdened courts with defendant and insurance company delay tactics has proved to be a major battleground for plaintiff's lawyers representing injured, innocent victims.

We at The Law Firm of Steven I. Fried, PC fight aggressively, efficiently and vigorously for our injured clients.

Categories: Wrongful Death

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The Law Firm of Steven I. Fried, P.C. - Bronx Personal Injury Attorney
Located at 5600A Broadway, Bronx, NY 10463.
Phone: (212) 964-5777.
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