New York City Personal Injury Law Blog

Who can be Held Responsible for Slip and Fall Accident in a New York Roadway Trench

Posted on Oct 26, 2014 in Slip and Fall

A construction company working on New York road failed to put up the required barrier or warning cones, to make people aware of the construction project in progress. A person who had just finished shopping happens to walk across this area of road, and loses his footing because he steps into a trench just four inches deep, dug up by the company. As result of this, he falls down, and suffers a serious elbow fracture.

Responsibility of the Construction Company

City Trench

Numerous factors need to be considered before suing the city authorities.

Any construction company operating on public places or roads is required to put up warning signs and barriers for alerting the public that walking, riding a bike, or driving in that area is dangerous. The construction company has the obligation to inform the public about the hazard created due to their work. In the above case, the construction company failed to take these measures, and because of that, a person walking on the road was seriously injured. In this situation, who is actually responsible for the accident and the injuries caused to the person?

Who is Responsible for the Accident?

In the above case the construction company is no doubt responsible for the accident because it failed to put up the require barriers and cones to warn the public of the hazard. However, the victim who is claiming compensation for his injuries will have to sue not only the construction company, but also the town department or municipality of that area. The municipality is also sued because this municipality hired the construction company to repair the road and therefore is jointly accountable for the accident.

The municipality is legally obligated to do any job in a proper and safe manner. Even though it hired a construction company to do the job, it is still obligated to see the job is being done in a safe and proper manner. The construction company failed to put up barricades and warning signs to alert the public. Therefore, it is accountable for the accident. However, it was the primary duty of the municipality to see the project was done properly without causing any injury to the public. Therefore, the municipality is also held accountable for the incident.

Generally, in trip and fall accidents, the owner or person in charge of the property where the accident occurred is held responsible. However, in public places, the authority in charge of maintaining the area will be held responsible, even if the work is being done by another party. The construction company no doubt failed in its duty and was negligent, since it did not alert the public of the hazardous condition of the road.

All Parties Accountable

The person fell down and sustained a fracture directly due to the construction company’s negligence. However, the lawsuit will also have to be filed against the authority that is primarily responsible for that road, which is the municipality. Therefore, you need to take into account all the parties responsible, especially if the slip and fall accident happens in public places.


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