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7 Facts You Should Know About Subway Accidents

7 Key Facts to Understand About Subway Accidents
What you should know about subway accidents

NYC Subway Accidents

New York City’s subway system is the largest in the United States and one of the largest in the world. Every day, about 4.3 million people use the subway to go work, to the university or any other place in the city. With so many people taking the subway, it is inevitable that some of them will be injured in an accident. According to the Metro Transit Authority (MTA), 158 people were killed by subways in 2020, with 58 of them dying. Even though the authorities take safety very seriously, hundreds of individuals are harmed in subway premises each year due to the authorities’ negligence. 

What Should You Do After a Subway Accident

A subway accident is a very unpleasant experience and can even lead to serious injuries. If you ever find yourself involved in a subway accident, there are some important steps that you should follow to avoid problems in the future. 

  • Do not give statements blaming anyone or admitting it was your fault. In case you need to explain what happened just stick to the facts and do not express your personal opinion. 
  • Gather as much evidence as possible. Take pictures of the scene, make sure all the objects that were important factors are captured. Take photos of your injuries. If someone witnessed your accident, you can ask them for their contact information in case you may need a statement from them in the future. 
  • Seek medical help. Even if you consider that you only suffered minor injuries, it is crucial to see a doctor as soon as possible. Some injuries cannot be detected immediately so it is better to have a professional check you to prevent future complications. 
  • Collect and keep copies of all the medical documentation you are given, this includes medical bills, exam results and medical records. 
  • Contact an experienced personal injury attorney. If your accident was caused by negligence from the MTA, you might be entitled to financial compensation but if you plan on filing a personal injury claim with the MTA you will need professional assistance. 

Injuries Caused by Subway Accidents in NY

Subway accidents can cause a variety of lesions that can range from minor to severe injuries. Here’s a list of some of the most common:

  • Fractures
  • Traumatic brain injury (TBI)
  • Spinal cord injuries
  • Internal bleeding
  • Sprains and strains
  • Concussions
  • Lacerations
  • Death

Most Common Causes of Subway Accidents

Most people believe that most accidents are caused by derailed trains, such as those we see on the news. Nonetheless, the majority of accidents remain unnoticed by the media because they are not so dramatic. These are some of the most common causes of accidents in the subway:

  • Wet and slippery floors: It is very common to see wet and slippery surfaces on rainy days. These areas can represent a great danger to the subway users. Slipping while going down the stairs can result in a very serious injury. The authorities should ensure that all wet areas, stairs or ramps are either blocked or cleaned to prevent someone from falling. 
  • Lack of illumination: Most of the subway system is underground, this means that natural light does not reach the majority of areas. Proper illumination is crucial to prevent people from tripping with an obstacle. 
  • Electrical shocks: Subways stations and trains have lots of electrical systems. In some cases these electrical systems may not be working properly and can cause someone to be shocked.
  • Lack of maintenance: Trains and stations have to be regularly maintained to ensure the safety of the users.  Some incidents like getting trapped between the doors are caused by lack of maintenance. 

Types Subway/Train Accidents in New York City

In crowded areas like the subway station, different kinds of accidents can happen. For example, one of the most common accidents is slipping and falling. Like previously mentioned, wet surfaces can be very dangerous because it is very easy to slip and fall when walking on a wet floor or ramp. Another type of accident that can occur in the subway system is persons becoming stuck between the train doors as they close. This type of collision might result in lacerations or crush injuries. Other types of subway accidents can be caused by operator errors, excessive speed, poor maintenance, and inadequate security.

Who is Liable if I Slip and Fall in The Subway?

Determining liability in a slip and fall accident in the subway is not as simple as you may think. Subway stations are very crowded places and many things can happen. The MTA will only be responsible for your accident if you are able to prove that due to their negligence you slipped and fell. For example, if there was an area in the station with uneven floors and poor illumination and those conditions were the cause of your injury, then you might be able to get compensation from the MTA. However, if your accident occurred because someone pushed you while walking and you fell, the MTA cannot be held responsible since they have no control over passengers and users of the subway.

How Long Do I Have to Report a Subway Accident?

Because the MTA is a government organization, you must take additional measures to report a subway accident and seek compensation. First, you will need to submit a notice of claim within 30 days from the date of the accident. This document basically lets the institution know that you are going to file a claim against them and you must describe the accident and the injuries you suffered. Once the 30 days have passed, you are allowed to initiate a personal injury lawsuit against the MTA. Keep in mind that you only have 1 year and 30 days after the accident to do this. If you fail to follow the steps in the appointed time, your case will be discarded.

Subway Accident Lawyer

If you have recently been involved in a subway accident, it is crucial to look for professional legal advice. If your injuries were caused by the negligence of the authorities you can pursue compensation, however, this is not a simple thing to do without the help of an experienced personal injury lawyer. At Greenberg & Stein P.C., you will find some of the best lawyers in New York. Our legal team has years of experience handling all kinds of cases and recovering compensation for our clients. Do not hesitate in contacting us to schedule a free consultation with one of our attorneys to review your legal options. Call us at 212-969- 8784.