Harsh, snow-loaded winters tend to be the norm in New York State. That is why people using the public roads and highways rely on snowplows to clear these thoroughfares and make them safe to use. It’s not an easy job, but snowplow operators have a moral and legal obligation to carry out their duties without presenting a risk to the public.

Unfortunately, accidents happen, and when they do, the result is usually catastrophic. In 2014, the Atlantic published an article on the growing number of snowplow-related fatalities in the City of New York, and titled it “Snowplows Are Attacking New York City Residents.”

Even the smaller snowplows dwarf regular motor vehicles when it comes to weight and size: some are massive government plows while others are large pickup trucks with a heavy plow secured to the front. When a collision takes place, typical injuries include:

  • Whiplash
  • Traumatic brain injury (TBI)
  • Spinal cord injury
  • Fractured bones
  • Severe burns
  • Disfiguring facial lacerations
  • Death

Snowplow accidents can be attributed to a wide range of factors, such as:

  • Defective vehicle brakes
  • Air brake failure
  • Tire blowouts
  • Blind spots and reduced visibility due to storm conditions
  • Slippery roads due to freezing rain or ice build-up
  • Driver fatigue or inexperience
  • Driving while texting or talking on the phone
  • Driving too quickly
  • Driving while under the influence of drugs or alcohol

Determining liability in a snowplow collision is challenging. This is because the machines can be owned and operated by private contractors, municipal governments, or the New York State Department of Transportation. Each one of them will be determined to protect their interests and minimize liability as much as possible. This is where a New York personal injury attorney can provide invaluable assistance.

An experienced personal injury lawyer will carry out a complete and comprehensive investigation to pinpoint what caused the accident and who is responsible. They will use police reports, witness statements, and your medical documentation to reconstruct the collision, determine its proximate cause, and proceed accordingly. If the snowplow operator is determined to be at fault, then you can sue for the following:

  • Current and future medical treatment costs
  • Lost wages
  • Loss of future earning ability
  • Past and future pain and suffering
  • Wrongful death (if you lost a loved one in the collision)

If you are injured in a snowplow accident, then seek medical attention first so that your injuries may be assessed, treated, and documented. Then, contact a personal injury attorney who can help you file a claim against the company or government entity that owns the equipment and employs the operator. Your attorney will fight to get you the compensation you need and deserve so that you have the financial resources you need to recover. Jayson Lutzky is a New York City accident and personal injury attorney. Over the past 33 years, he has recovered millions of dollars for his clients who were injured. Call 718-514-6619 to set up a free in-person consultation if you have been injured. Visit www.MyNewYorkCityLawyer.com to learn more about Jayson Lutzky, P.C.