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Perilous Parkways

/ Car Accident /

Perilous ParkwaysGARDEN CITY, N.Y. – Since 1927, the Southern State Parkway has been a fixture in Long Island. For the most part, it’s also remained unchanged, and according to several legislators and safety officials, that’s a big problem.

According to a 2016 study conducted by the New York State Department of Transportation, more than 10,000 traffic collisions happened on the Southern State Parkway over the past five years. These crashes included more than 3,000 that resulted in serious injuries and nearly three dozen fatal accidents.

A Long Island car accident lawyer at Cellino & Barnes says many of those crashes can be attributed to outdated road design and crumbling infrastructure. In some cases, even the signs can be outdated.

“The Southern State Parkways is one of the most dangerous roadways on Long Island,” car accident attorney Steve Barnes said. “It has short entrance ramps, and the aging design of the road doesn’t always give drivers the time and distance they need to safely merge into traffic, which could be going 55 miles-per-hour, or faster.”

The roadway is notoriously dangerous. In fact, it has the attention of several lawmakers who recently introduced bills in both the New York State Assembly and the New York State Senate. If passed, the bills would establish a study to evaluate the configuration of the Southern State Parkway, including its entrance ramps, exit ramps, signage, and whether other safety measures are needed.

The act would also help traffic safety officials obtain federal funds that could pave the way for safety improvements.

“New York State can sometimes be held partially responsible for an accident that occurs on a problematic roadway,” Barnes said. “In many cases, the Department of Transportation has known about technical flaws that present safety hazards for drivers, but it often takes a devastating accident to get these issues ironed out.”

Unfortunately, any plans for a redesigned parkway could be months, or even years away. But statistics have shown that a deadly accident occurs every other month on Southern State Parkway.

If you or a loved one has been injured by a negligent or speeding driver on this dangerous stretch of roadway, the Long Island car accident lawyers at Cellino & Barnes can help. They’ve obtained more than $2 billion for their clients, and their experience could help you get the best result possible from an injury claim.

Contact one of our Long Island car accident attorneys for a free case evaluation.

Cellino & Barnes (800) 888-8888

Workplace Safety Tops To-Do List

/ Construction Accidents /

Workplace Safety Tops To-Do ListNEW YORK – Lawmakers in every state are introducing new bills this year that aim to improve workplace safety. These changes could be important in many places, as construction booms and increased traffic have caused a spike in the number of accidents.

In Kansas, lawmakers are considering a plan that would put workplace safety enforcement in the hands of the state’s Department of Labor. Traditionally, enforcement has been the duty of the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration, but Kansas legislators argue that OSHA has been taxed by recent cuts, and the state could do a better job of making sure all construction sites and businesses maintain a safe working environment.

In Kentucky, coal is king. It’s also a risky business, but with the proper safety regulations in place, state lawmakers believe the number of accidents can be reduced. The state increased the number and frequency of mine inspections a few years ago and now, many lawmakers hope to keep inspectors busy – and some are looking to increase the number of inspections.

And in New York, the city is planning to spend billions of dollars to redesign streets and begin working on several construction safety projects. The new road designs aim to keep pedestrians and bicyclists safe from the city’s buzzing traffic. Many of those who will benefit from these updated streets are construction workers who use city sidewalks and bike lanes to commute to work.

Construction workers in the Big Apple have been fighting a battle of their own. City Council introduced a package of 21 bills that would promote safety on work sites. This “Construction Safety Act” was developed as a direct response to the spike in construction accidents in New York over the past few years.

With any type of legislation, there are pros and cons – but the focus remains the same: preventing another construction accident in New York, and other respective states.

Unfortunately, accidents are common in these jobs – even when safety is a top priority. If you’ve been injured in an accident, the New York construction accident lawyers at Cellino & Barnes can help.

Trusted with personal injury cases for over 50 years, a New York construction accident attorney can help hard working New Yorkers get the best result possible from an injury claim. At Cellino & Barnes, their experienced New York construction accident attorneys are focused on helping their clients maximize their results.

Cellino & Barnes (800) 888-8888

Pilots: Safety Not Always First With Airlines

/ Airplane Injuries /

Pilots: Safety Not Always First With AirlinesNEW YORK – Air travel is often considered one of the safest modes of transportation, but if you ask pilots, many of them will tell you that the airlines are not putting safety first.

At a global debate, pilots announced their growing concerns with many airlines and the lack of safety culture principles. In fact, one study found airline executives and financial decisions have greatly impacted airline safety in recent years.

The study found several trends and gaps in aviation safety. These problems included:

  • Hiring trends of low-wage, inexperienced staff, including pilots
  • Outdated aircraft equipment
  • Lack of proper maintenance, or adequate maintenance workers
  • Overworked staff, including pilots

One of the most alarming concerns involved pilot fatigue. According to polls, 76-percent of the pilots working for cut-rate companies reported they were tired at work. In general, more than half of all pilots said they were frequently flying without enough rest.

Even at this rate, researchers believe many pilots are afraid to say that they were fatigued at the helm, and the true number of sleepy pilots could be much larger.

A New York airplane injury lawyer at Cellino & Barnes says the fatigue and lack of safety culture can also trickle-down to other staffers, including maintenance crews and flight attendants.

“Each year, thousands of passengers are injured in the air – on both domestic and international flights out of New York,” airplane injury attorney Ross Cellino said. “Many of these injuries can be traced back to that lack of safety culture and training among airline crews and staff.”

Some of the most common incidents on airplanes have to do with falling luggage. It’s estimated that over 4,000 people suffer injuries every year after being struck by falling suitcases, bags, boxes, or other carry-on items.

New York airplane injury lawyers say it is the flight staff’s duty to make sure all items are properly stowed before take-off. It is also the crew’s responsibility to make sure overhead bins are functioning properly and won’t suddenly open in-flight.

“Unfortunately, these accidents are surprisingly common,” Cellino said. “It’s also no secret that some airlines are cutting costs and giving the few staff members they have left more responsibilities; it can often be overwhelming and safety is sometimes overlooked.”

These accidents can cause serious and permanent injuries, but victims of irresponsible airlines don’t have to fight the big corporations alone. The New York airplane injury attorneys at Cellino & Barnes have helped many travelers get compensation for their injuries.

If you’ve been injured in an airport, or in-flight, contact Cellino & Barnes for a free case evaluation.

Cellino & Barnes (800) 888-8888

Clear off Your Vehicle

/ Truck Accident /

Clear off Your VehicleROCHESTER, N.Y. – It happens every winter: as the snow piles-up on cars, negligent drivers take-off without brushing the snow off the roof. Their windshield may be clear, but these drivers are creating hazardous conditions for others using the roads.

Driving in winter weather is dangerous enough without having to dodge snow or ice falling off another person’s vehicle. According to State Police, several people suffered eye injuries last week when chunks of ice fell off one vehicle and smashed the windshield of another.

A Rochester truck accident attorney at Cellino & Barnes says drivers who don’t clear off their cars can even be considered a traffic violation in some states, and if it causes an accident, negligent drivers could be held responsible for any injuries.

“Many of us have been in that situation: stuck behind a vehicle with snow and ice flying off the roof in Rochester,” truck accident lawyer Ross Cellino said. “It’s downright dangerous and it has been known to cause serious accidents, but it’s really simple to avoid.”

Rochester truck accident lawyers suggest using common sense; and there are some tricks to help drivers get the snow and ice off their cars in a hurry:

  1. Use some de-icing spray on your windows before turning on your windshield wipers
  2. Have a broom or shovel handy to clear those hard-to-reach areas of your car’s roof
  3. Work from the top down. Start with the roof. Sometimes, it can dislodge ice over windows
  4. Park your car facing east. When the sun rises in the morning, it gives you a head-start
  5. NEVER use hot water to melt ice. You’re doing more harm – not only can this damage your car, hot water can also freeze faster in cold conditions!

These tips go for truck drivers too. In a recent poll, more than half (54%) of truckers reported they ‘rarely or never’ remove snow and ice from their trucks and trailers, AAA reported.

If you or a loved one has been injured in an accident involving a car or truck covered in snow and ice, you could receive significant compensation for your injuries. The Rochester truck accident attorneys at Cellino & Barnes have extensive experience handling these types of matters, and they’re focused on getting clients the best result possible.

For a free case evaluation, call Cellino & Barnes anytime – 24/7

Cellino & Barnes (800)888-8888

 

Rely on Responsibility, Not Luck This Weekend

/ Car Accident /

Rely on Responsibility, Not Luck This WeekendBUFFALO, N.Y. – More than half of Americans plan to be Irish this weekend, spending an estimated $5.3 billion St. Patrick’s Day outfits, food and drinks. But the luck o’ the Irish only goes so far.

In Western New York, it’s a must-see event as thousands of people flood Delaware Avenue for the annual St. Patrick’s Day Parade. While most of these parade-goers are responsible with their alcohol consumption, there are some who are not.

A Buffalo car accident lawyer at Cellino & Barnes says drunk driving continues to be a major problem on the holiday.

“People know the risks of driving drunk, and dozens of others pay the price every year in Buffalo,” car accident attorney Steve Barnes said. “They can get pulled over and receive a DWI, or even worse: cause a car crash that takes someone else’s life.”

In 2015, nearly three dozen people were killed in drunk-driving crashes over St. Paddy’s Day weekend, WalletHub reports. That adds up to a deadly crash every 72 minutes. Roughly three-quarters of these crashes involved a driver who consumed twice the legal limit.

During the St. Patrick’s Day week alone, New York State Police made roughly 500 alcohol-related arrests last year, according to state records. Most of those arrests occurred on the holiday itself, but since St. Patrick’s Day falls on a Friday this year, safety advocates fear the problem could get worse.

“Since many people don’t have to work the next day, they could be staying at the bar later into the evening, and that’s when things can get out of hand,” Barnes said. “Not only are they consuming more alcohol, they’re also losing daylight, and nighttime driving is more dangerous for everyone – even the designated driver.”

The Buffalo car accident lawyers at Cellino & Barnes urge everyone to enjoy St. Patrick’s Day responsibly. That means planning ahead and getting a designated driver, if you plan on enjoying a green beverage or two.

If the worst-case scenario happens to you or your family, trust the firm that has helped Western New Yorkers get the best result possible from a drunk driving crash. Contact the Buffalo car accident attorneys at Cellino & Barnes for a free case evaluation.

Cellino & Barnes (800)888-8888

Often Overlooked: School Bus Safety

/ Car Accident /

Often Overlooked: School Bus SafetyNEW YORK – Most school-aged children use the bus to get to and from their classes each day, and it’s generally thought of as one of the safest modes of transportation. But safety advocates are urging parents and drivers to rethink safety – both on and off the school bus.

According to federal statistics, most accidents happen before or after a child has stepped off the bus. A Bronx bus accident lawyer at Cellino & Barnes said these moments are some of the most dangerous times for children.

“Some drivers either don’t notice the flashing lights of a school bus, or they ignore them completely,” Bronx bus accident attorney Steve Barnes said. “It’s a growing problem across the country, and it’s putting many children at risk.”

The New York Association for Pupil Transportation (NYAPT) recently conducted a survey of 878 bus drivers that reported being passed 727 times in one day.

When applied to the more than 50,000 school buses on the road in New York State, drivers illegally passed yellow buses over 41,000 times each day.

It’s not just a problem in New York, either. Other states are also reporting a rise in the number of accidents involving school buses and passing vehicles. In Tampa, Florida, there’s an average of 486 accidents that result in 302 injuries and two deaths every year, WFTS reported. In some areas, accident rates have gone up 65-percent over the last five years. In DeKalb County, Georgia, bus drivers now average about 1.2 accidents each day, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported.

“School bus safety needs to be a priority for every single person that drives a vehicle,” Barnes said. “Passing a school bus with its lights on is illegal, and it’s unacceptable, because there are young lives at stake.”

Some school districts are considering attaching red-light cameras to their vehicles to catch negligent drivers in the act. In fact, North Carolina lawmakers have introduced a bill that would allow counties to adopt ordinances that would assess civil penalties to violators who pass a stopped school bus.

In many cases, these incidents result in close-calls that go unpunished, but some incidents end with heartache and frustration. If your child has been injured, the Bronx school bus accident lawyers at Cellino & Barnes have worked on similar cases in all 50 states, and this experience has helped many families get significant compensation after an accident.

When a negligent driver ignores the flashing lights and injures your child, the Bronx bus accident attorneys at Cellino & Barnes can protect your rights and help your family get the best result possible from an injury claim.

Contact us for a free case evaluation.

Cellino & Barnes (800)888-8888

Nursery Products Behind a Spike in Infant Injuries

/ Defective Products /

Nursery Products Behind a Spike in Infant InjuriesBUFFALO, N.Y. – Every parent has a short list of ‘must-have’ items: a crib, a stroller, toys, and a baby carrier. Although these are basic items for any growing family, a new study is warning parents about how dangerous some of these products can be.

More than 66,000 children are sent to emergency rooms each year, after getting injured in an accident related to nursery products. That’s an average of 128 hospitalized infants each day.

According to a new Nationwide Children’s Hospital study, most of these accidents resulted in concussions or other head injuries. In fact, research has found that the majority of the incidents involved a child, usually an infant, falling out of a stroller, carrier or crib.

These basic nursery items are also on the recall list more than any other children’s product or toy. A Buffalo defective product attorney at Cellino & Barnes says parents and expecting parents should at least be aware of these accidents when shopping for their nursery.

“These accidents are more common than most people think, and they’ve happened right here in Buffalo,” defective product lawyer Steve Barnes said. “Parents should be doing their research to make sure they’re looking for products that meet the latest safety standards, and the items they’ve already purchased should be checked for recalls on a regular basis.”

Recalls as a result of defective cribs, strollers and carriers can be found on Recalls.gov, a resource which lists almost all federal consumer product recalls. Buffalo defective product lawyers say parents should also check with the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission on a regular basis to make sure the products they’ve purchased for their child meet the latest safety standards.

Doctors noted that many of the children’s’ injuries were a result of improper installation, and parents must carefully read directions for many nursery products before putting them together, or setting them up.

Unfortunately, many other injuries are caused by defects in nursery products. These defects can include broken parts, choking or strangulation risks, poor durability, or an overall lack of safety testing.

If your child has been injured as a result of a faulty nursery crib, carrier or stroller, the injuries can be very serious, often impacting a child’s learning ability or progress. Any defective product is unacceptable in today’s safety-focused society – and the products that can injure a child should be immediately pulled off the shelves to save other children and parents the heartache and pain that goes with one of these accidents.

The Buffalo defective product attorneys at Cellino & Barnes have helped many families get compensation for these injuries by holding the manufacturers responsible for negligently marketing unsafe nursery furniture, transports and toys.

Trusted with personal injury matters for over 50 years, Cellino & Barnes has taken many of the nation’s biggest manufacturers to court to make sure safety is the industry’s number-one priority. To find out how our team can help with your situation, contact a Buffalo defective product attorney for a free case evaluation.

Cellino & Barnes (800) 888-8888

Cellino & Barnes Secures $5 Million Settlement for Electrocution Victim

/ Construction Accidents /

Cellino & Barnes Secures $5 Million Settlement for Electrocution VictimROCHESTER, N.Y. – One of the victims of a 2015 work site accident will receive a $5 million settlement that will help cover the costs of medical treatments, pain and suffering, lost wages, and other daily expenses.

The victim was working on a flatbed truck delivering steel I-beams to a Western New York construction site in April, 2015. Operators were using a boom crane to unload the cargo when the tall crane came into contact with high-power wires above.

The contact with the power lines caused the victims’ truck to energize, and it sent more than 7,000 volts of electricity through the workers’ bodies.

In comparison, the electric chair only carried 2,000 volts.

The accident killed one worker, and injured two others. One of the survivors of that accident, an Ontario County man represented by Cellino & Barnes, has accepted the settlement after nearly two years of negotiations.

A Rochester construction accident lawyer at Cellino & Barnes says no sum of money will ever restore this man’s life to the way it was before the incident, but the settlement will allow the victim and his family to afford the care and treatment he will likely need for the remainder of his life.

“It’s heartbreaking when accidents like this happen, and it can be overwhelming to an entire family,” Rochester construction accident attorney Steve Barnes said. “This man will have to live with devastating injuries and burns the rest of his life, and these frustrations are amplified because incidents like these can be prevented.”

According to public records, an Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) investigation revealed that many provisions were not in place before this accident. Investigators later issued citations and penalties to the victims’ employer.

Rochester construction accident attorneys say these citations are far too common on work sites – and the solutions are often simple, like training programs or oversight to ensure workers are taking the proper safety precautions.

“This incident reemphasizes the need for safe work site practices across the nation,” Rochester personal injury attorney Kerby Wright said. “When safety procedures are in place, it ensures that other workers will be able to return home to their families every evening without harm.”

The National Safety Council reports that nearly 5 million people are injured on the job every year – and almost 4,000 workers are killed, as the result of a preventable accident.

Construction sites or jobs involving transportation or warehousing are the most accident-prone industries, but safety advocates said injuries have been reported in every type of career – even those that are not labor intensive.

If you or a loved one has been injured on a work site, the law offices of Cellino & Barnes can help. Their Rochester construction accident lawyers have helped many people across the nation get compensation for their injuries, and their clients have received more than $2 billion in settlements and verdicts.

When a job-related accident puts you in the hospital, trust the firm that has helped other hard-working families get the compensation they deserved. Contact Cellino & Barnes for a free case evaluation.

Cellino & Barnes (800) 888-8888

The Accident Wasn’t My Fault

/ Car Accident /

The Accident Wasn’t My FaultNEW YORK – When you drive distracted and cause an accident, it’s no shock to see your insurance premiums spike. But even those who are not at fault could end up paying more for coverage, a consumer report found.

The Consumer Federation of America did some research on the insurance industry and obtained price quotes from a handful of the largest auto insurers in 10 cities, including Queens. The study found that drivers in New York City tend to fork over the most cash after getting into accidents they didn’t cause.

The consequences add to the costs of auto insurance, and in New York, that can be a steep penalty for doing nothing wrong.

In Queens, the average premium hike was $401 for those who were not-at-fault.

“These charges are in addition to the medical bills, lost wages and other costs associated with personal injuries that can happen as a result of a car crash in Queens,” car accident lawyer Ross Cellino said. “Many of these victims suffer real injuries, and to be hit with an insurance increase can be another unexpected punishment.”

Two states have already banned such penalties – California and Oklahoma – but that leaves the majority of the nation’s drivers exposed to significant rate hikes if another driver crashes into them.

The report also found that some insurers were more unfair than others. One insurance company applied additional charges to every quote except in cities where rate hikes were prohibited by state law. These surcharges sometimes raised quoted rates by 10 percent or more.

Other insurance companies occasionally charged innocent drivers, and only one insurer never increased rates for those who had not-at-fault accidents.

Insurance groups argue that the report is overly simplistic – and it’s missing several key factors insurance companies use to generate the true cost of a driver’s auto premiums.

The report, whether it’s accurate or not, raise several questions:

WHY ARE SOME SAFE DRIVERS FACING HIGHER PREMIUMS?

According to the insurance companies, it’s often not clear to them who is at fault.

In some cases, the driver who hit you may not have insurance at all – forcing your insurance company to raise your rates. In other instances, your insurance company could incur costs while trying to get a payment from the other driver’s insurer.

HOW CAN A SAFE DRIVER KEEP THEIR PREMIUM LOW?

Shop. Shop. Shop.

Any driver should be able to find the best rate by shopping around. If your insurer slaps you with an unexpected rate hike, chances are some other insurance company will jump at the opportunity to sign you up at with a better deal.

WHAT CAN I DO IF I’M INJURED?

Car accidents are not only costly – they’re dangerous too. Even when drivers follow all the rules of the road and practice safe driving habits, one bad driver can change everything.

Although the insurance company will likely offer to pay certain medical expenses, it is a business for them – and a Queens car accident attorney at Cellino & Barnes says insurance companies don’t often provide crash victims with fair compensation.

Obtaining an experienced attorney is the easiest way to ensure that you and your family obtain the best result possible from an injury claim.

If you or a loved one has been injured in a crash, contact the Queens car accident lawyers at Cellino & Barnes today for a free case evaluation.

Cellino & Barnes (800)888-8888

The Two Most Important Interventions For Bicyclists

/ Bicycle Accidents /

The Two Most Important Interventions For BicyclistsNEW YORK – More than 700,000 people regularly ride their bicycles on city streets, and that number is growing, making cycling more popular than ever in the Big Apple. But crashes involving bicyclists are also on the rise.

According to the Department of Transportation, more than 4,000 cyclists were injured on city streets in 2015. That’s nearly a ten percent spike from the previous year.

Now, more than ever, safety matters in the cycling community – and other cities around the globe are taking notice. A new report on cycling safety in a Canadian city came to the common-sense conclusion that those who wear helmets and travel on protected bike lanes are less likely to be involved in an accident.

The report reads, “the two most important interventions available to improve cyclist safety are cycling safety devices (helmets, lights and bells), and cycling infrastructure.”

The report was conducted to back a potential mandatory-use helmet law in the city of Winnipeg, but it doesn’t make any recommendations to city officials who are about to enact new regulations or enforce existing safety laws. However, the report notes that helmets have been proven to significantly reduce head injuries in accidents with an impact of 15 miles per hour or less.

Most cyclists in New York can travel at speeds of up to 10 mph, so helmets could be a life-saving piece of equipment. Unfortunately, few cars are traveling slower than 20 mph. At these speeds, studies have shown that bicycle helmets have almost no safety benefit.

Still, safety advocates urge bicyclists to wear a helmet because it does decrease a rider’s risk of serious injury. The more important aspect to bicycle safety is keeping cyclists away from cars. Dedicated bike lanes and infrastructure built on low traffic streets was found to be associated with a reduced risk of accident.

In New York, work has already begun on many city streets. Since 2007, the DOT has implemented protected bike lanes on more than 72 miles of roadways. Still, the number of accidents involving bicycles continues to rise, mostly due to the growing popularity of two-wheeled transportation.

WHAT TO DO IF I’M INJURED IN A BICYCLE ACCIDENT

For many New York families, the progress is not happening fast enough. More than dozen cyclists are killed in traffic collisions each year, and thousands more taken to city hospitals.

These accidents not only cause families grief and heartache, they are also costly. The average bicycle crash can cost a family nearly $60,000 in medical expenses, lost wages and other damages. These accidents can also cause a victim to lose quality of life, and although it’s difficult to monetize, it raises the overall cost of an accident even higher.

If you or a loved one has been injured in a Brooklyn bicycle accident, know you are not alone. Thousands of other New Yorkers have had similar experiences, and many of these victims have relied on the Brooklyn bicycle accident attorneys at Cellino & Barnes for help.

With decades of experience, our Brooklyn bicycle accident lawyers have tried cases in court – and they’ve won. Cellino & Barnes has recovered over $2 billion for injured clients, and they will use their network of resources to help victims get the best result possible.

When a negligent driver crashes into a bicyclist, the injuries can be catastrophic. Trust the team that has helped many other New Yorkers receive compensation after an accident. Contact a Brooklyn bicycle accident lawyer at Cellino & Barnes today for a free case evaluation.

Cellino & Barnes (800)888-8888

Client Thanks

I would like to thank your firm for representing our family on behalf of my late husband. This whole process was, at times, difficult for us and sometimes painful. But, we were always in good hands as Brian and Maria are two of the hardest working and sincerest people I have ever had the pleasure of meeting. They did a tremendous job.

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