Lawsuits Due to Accidents

If you have been seriously injured in a transportation accident, an attorney can help you explore your case. Attorneys can help you obtain the appropriate financial compensation for your injuries.

It is important to clarify how you were injured and how the accident is classified. This determines the type of lawsuit you file and the financial award you may be entitled to get.

Accident Deaths and Injuries

Deaths due to transportation accidents are not uncommon. In fact, “passenger transportation incidents account for about one out of seven preventable injury-related deaths,” says the National Safety Council (NSC). (1)

Among the most common types of transportation accidents are those involving personal and other lightweight vehicles. The Insurance Information Institute (III) reports there was an increase of 1.35 in the motor vehicle crash fatality rate per 100 million vehicle miles traveled in the first half of 2020. III indicated the increase was probably due to “faster driving”. (2)

For New Yorkers, the statistics are even more jarring. The New York Department of Health says between 2012 and 2014, “On average there were 1,098 deaths each year due to unintentional motor vehicle traffic-related injuries, killing 5.6 of every 100,000 New Yorkers.“ (3)

There were also 141 deaths due to motor-vehicle traffic related motorcyclist injuries and 312 deaths due to motor-vehicle traffic related pedestrian injuries in New York state during the same time period. (4)

Motor vehicle crashes are not the only type of transportation accidents.

If you or someone you know was injured in a transportation accident, a lawsuit can help get the compensation you deserve.

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Types of Transportation Accidents

Among the common types of transportation accidents are:

  • Airplane: 30 air carrier accidents in the U.S. during 2018 left 25 people seriously injured. (5)
  • Bus: There were 5,184 people killed in large truck and bus crashes on U.S. roadways in 2018. (6)
  • Car: Excessive speed or racing was among the top U.S. driver behaviors contributing to fatal crashes in 2018. (7)
  • Motorcycle: Motorcycles are less stable than closed vehicles and both operators and passengers are more vulnerable. (8) “The majority of motorcycle fatality crashes occur on city streets, rather than highways.” (9)
  • Scooter: Scooters are 28% of the two-wheel vehicles on NYC streets. (10)
  • Subway: Research findings indicate there were 211 subway train-related fatalities between January 2003 and May 2007 in NYC. (11)
  • Taxi: An NYC Police Department Collision Report shows 355 taxis were involved in crashes citywide during the month of December. (12)
  • Train: National data indicates 74.8% of all fatalities were categorized as “public” in 2013, a category including trespassing. (13)
  • Truck: During 2019, there were 80 fatal crashes involving large trucks and 4,275 crashes resulting in personal injuries in New York state. (14)
  • Vehicle services, including Lyft and Uber: Uber reported over 100 fatalities from 2017-2018 in relation to their app. (15)

New York City Personal Vehicle Accidents

Some accidents involve personal vehicles such as cars, motorcycles, scooters, taxis, trucks, and vehicle services (Lyft and Uber).

According to a 2020 citywide report by the NYC Police Department, there were 8,300 motor vehicle crashes in December alone. These personal vehicle crashes were due to a number of factors. (16)

Among the long list of contributing crash factors were: (17)

  • Distracted driving — 2,253.
  • Following too closely — 617.
  • Failure to yield right-of-way — 558.
  • Speeding — 334.
  • Improper lane changes — 327.
  • Backing unsafely — 283.
  • Passing too closely — 277.
  • Disregarding traffic control — 221.

According to the report, these crashes also resulted in 18 deaths and 3,402 injuries. This includes the deaths of 3 cyclists and 317 injured cyclists, along with the deaths of 4 pedestrians and 596 injured pedestrians. (18)

Clearly New York City personal vehicle accidents are concerning, but so are mass transit accidents.

Mass Transit Accidents

Mass transit includes airplanes, buses, subways, trains, and ferries. Often, the most complex mass transit systems are found in the larger cities. Millions of people use these systems daily.

New York City

Many of the mass transit systems in New York City are public systems operated by the Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) or its agencies. Others are operated by the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey.

The MTA is the nation’s largest mass transit system serving 15.3 million people. (19) In 2019 the network provided a total of 2.56 billion rides. (20) With such an extensive transportation network, accidents are not rare and often result in injuries.

Safety indicators showed MTA performance had fallen short of safety targets in several key areas. For example, New York City Transit customer injury rates on subways failed to meet safety target rates by 7.4%. And customer accident injury rates on buses failed by 43.9%. For the MTA Bus Company, the customer accident rates failed by 14.2%. (21)

Accident Negligence

Mass transit accidents can range from being struck by a train or bus, to crashes, or derailments. One of the primary reasons for these accidents is some form of negligence. When someone is careless or irresponsible, and their behavior leads to accidents or injuries, they should be held accountable.

Negligence plays a role in accidents resulting from faulty equipment or equipment failures, mechanical failures, improper maintenance, or operator errors. Operator errors include behaviors such as excessive speed, use of alcohol or drugs, inattentiveness, and judgement errors.

Operators have a duty to make sure passengers riding the transportation system arrive at their destinations safely. When passengers are injured, operators can be held responsible.


There are many ways passengers can be injured while riding on mass transit. Passengers can be injured by closing doors while disembarking trains. They can get caught in mechanisms on train platforms or on station escalators.

Slips, trips, and falls are also common injuries suffered while embarking or disembarking both trains and buses. Worse yet, in serious accidents passengers may be thrown from train cars. And plane crashes often result in many injuries and multiple deaths.

Serious injuries sustained in mass transit accidents can require extensive medical treatment with lengthy recovery times. Additionally, if you were seriously injured in a mass transit accident, you may suffer mental or emotional damage affecting your quality of life for years to come.

If you have suffered serious injuries from a mass transit accident, an attorney can help.

Were you or a loved one injured in a transportation accident? You may be eligible for compensation.

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Why You Need an Attorney

In order for you to gain full compensation and heal, you may need to file a lawsuit. An attorney can deal with insurance claims, help you navigate the legal system, and negotiate settlements on your behalf. When necessary, your attorney can represent you in court.

An experienced mass transit accident attorney knows the law, understands the insurance claims process, and sees the responsible parties are held accountable.

Weitz & Luxenberg Helps

Weitz & Luxenberg has been helping clients like you for over 30 years. Our mass transit accident attorneys highly succeed in winning verdicts and negotiating settlements for our clients.

Below are just a few examples of our many successes:

  • W&L secured over $20.5 million in a hit-and-run case for the now paralyzed victim.
  • W&L negotiated a $1.4 million settlement for a woman run down by a New York City ambulance.