Taxi cabs are nearly synonymous with New York, dotting the streets of all five boroughs and transporting countless passengers every day. Unfortunately, with so many taxis, there are numerous accidents involving motorists, bicyclists, pedestrians, and others. According to the Taxi and Limousine Commission, there are approximately 820 crashes each month. Many of these wrecks leave victims with serious injuries, some of which are fatal. If you or a loved one has been hurt in a taxi accident, how do you seek justice?
You start by hiring an experienced personal injury law firm that is ready to stand up for you. That firm is Miller, Montiel, & Strano, P.C.
Why Do Taxi Accidents Happen?
Every taxi accident involves different factual circumstances. It is the victim’s responsibility to explain to the court how those facts point to negligence. That means understanding the most common reasons that these wrecks occur. Here are some examples:
Driving under the influence. As with any other automobile accident, driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol can have catastrophic results. Some drivers operate their taxis under the influence of prescription medications, which is still negligent if it impairs their driving.
Fatigued driving. Taxi drivers are known to work long shifts, which means fatigue can easily set in. There are even some drivers who finish a shift with the taxi company and then drive on the side for rideshare businesses like Uber. Driving without enough rest is akin to drunk driving and can be just as dangerous.
Reckless driving. If you’ve been in enough taxis in New York, you probably already know how reckless some drivers can be. Reckless driving is a rather broad category of unreasonable driving behavior that puts others at risk and interferes with the proper use of the roads. Speeding, tailgating another vehicle, and weaving in and out of traffic lanes may be considered reckless driving.
Distracted driving. Texting while driving and other cell phone use is illegal, and this is a main source of distracted driving in New York. Other sources include talking to the passengers, eating food, and listening to the radio. Anything that takes the taxi driver’s focus away from driving can be considered a distraction.
Other drivers. Sometimes, the risk of a taxi accident comes from other motorists. They may engage in reckless driving or any of the other above behaviors and put lives at risk. If the other driver was performing work duties at the time of the accident, his or her employer could be held liable.
Unsafe roads. If the roads are unsafe, whether due to government neglect, hazardous construction zones, debris falling off of vehicles, or other dangers, an accident could easily take place. Third parties such as governmental entities and construction companies could be held liable.
Manufacturing defects and poor maintenance. As a general matter, a manufacturing defect could make the taxi unsafe. So could lack of proper maintenance. Taxis undergo significant wear and tear and require diligent and timely repairs and maintenance work to stay safe.
Bicyclists and pedestrians. Everyone is expected to obey traffic laws, and that includes bicyclists and pedestrians. The unsafe operation of a bicycle could cause a taxi driver to suddenly apply the brakes, causing a rear-end collision. Meanwhile, jaywalking is one example of dangerous pedestrian behavior.
Who Can Be Held Liable for Taxi Accidents?
Considering the above causes of taxi accidents, there are several parties who could be responsible for the victim’s injuries. They include:
- Taxi drivers
- Taxi companies
- Other drivers
- The employers of other drivers
- Governmental entities
- Automobile manufacturers
- Repair shops
Not all taxi accidents have just one at-fault party. There are many instances in which multiple parties may share the blame. For instance, the taxi driver may have engaged in unsafe driving maneuvers. However, the taxi company could have failed to properly train or discipline the driver, contributing to the accident.
In cases like these, it will be essential to thoroughly investigate all available facts surrounding the accident. This helps ensure that all parties who could be held liable for the taxi accident are brought into the lawsuit as defendants. The more parties who share liability, the more compensation that the victim could receive for his or her injuries.
Potential Damages In Your Taxi Accident Case
All automobile accidents, including those involving taxis, are different. In turn, the types of injuries you suffer and the consequences they have on your life will differ from those of another taxi accident victim. Nonetheless, for most of these matters, injury victims can seek the following damages:
- Medical bills, including past, present, and future expenses
- Lost wages
- Lost earning capacity
- Pain and suffering
- Emotional distress
- Loss of enjoyment of life
Wrongful death damages are also available to eligible surviving family members if the victim dies from his or her injuries. Wrongful death lawsuits are similar to personal injury claims, although the potential damages are different. Our firm is able to assist you if a loved one died in a taxi accident due to someone else’s negligent conduct.
Contact Our Queens Taxi Accident Attorney
The personal injury attorneys of Miller, Montiel, & Strano, P.C. are dedicated to the rights of taxi accident victims and their families. When you retain us to represent you, we will investigate the circumstances of your accident and get to work building a case. We will seek the maximum damages available under the law and handle your case from start to finish. Call us today to learn more.