A bicycle accident at a Citi Bike docking station in New York has left a visitor from Connecticut with nerve damage and the inability to sense taste and smell, according to the 73-year-old rider and his lawyer.
Ronald Corwin has filed a $15 million claim against NYC and the operator of Citi Bike claiming that a 6 inch barrier erected in front of the docking station was negligently installed and was the cause of his accident.
The accident happened last October when Corwin was returning the bike to the docking station at the intersection of Madison Avenue and 56th Street in Midtown. He alleges that the concrete barrier was not seen in time as its color blended into the background. The front wheel of his bike collided with the barrier and he flipped over and landed with his head on the ground.
Injuries to his head have apparently led to serious long-term damage according to Corwin, his wife and the lawyer who is helping him file the lawsuit against both NYC and the private operator in charge of Citi Bike. He says that he is now suffering from something called traumatic nerve palsy which is caused by damage to a nerve. The injury has apparently meant that Corwin’s senses of taste and smell have both disappeared. According to his lawyer, Guy Smiley, Corwin says everything tastes of “cardboard”, while he can no longer distinguish different smells either. The accident victim has apparently been visiting various specialists but has been unable to get any respite from the nerve damage.
Although New York City is the owner of the Citi Bike scheme, which has only recently been installed, it is actually managed by a private operator. The operator is apparently liable for any claims against it as a result of personal injuries. The operator’s insurance company is presumed to be the one to be involved in Mr. Corwin’s claim. The arrangement then protects New York City from being subject to any lawsuits itself. A spokesman from the City’s Law Department says that the city is not making any comment about the litigation taking place.
The barrier in question has already been modified by the Citi Bike operator. It is also called a “wheelstop” and is designed to stop vehicles from backing up too close to the bike docking station. The barrier is around 6 feet in length and 6 inches high. The barrier has now been painted orange and an orange construction cone has been placed nearby to warn riders of the existence of the barrier. The modifications only happened after Mr. Corwin’s accident, however.
Anyone who is injured in an accident of this type may be able to claim damages from whoever is held responsible, but proof of the liability must be demonstrated. The injuries to Mr. Corwin in this case do seem to be serious. The amount he has claimed is designed to cover medical expenses as well as an amount for “pain and suffering”. These sorts of claims are very hard to pursue without the help of an experienced personal injury lawyer who understands how to assess liability and calculate the total damages due.
If you have an accident anywhere in the New York City or Long Island area which is not your fault, then you should contact Richard S. Jaffe Esq. of the Law Offices of Cohen & Jaffe LLP. He is a proficient personal injury lawyer and has handled many cases like Mr. Corwin’s successfully. Contact him at the Law Offices of Cohen & Jaffe LLP, 2001 Marcus Avenue, Suite W295, Lake Success, NY 11042 Phone: 516-358-6900 or toll free: 800-483-6149.