Matthew Palacios Manhattan: Matthew Travis Palacios Killed In East Harlem Hit-And-Run Dump Truck Accident While Riding Bicycle By East 125th Street and First Avenue In Manhattan
HARLEM, NEW YORK (November 9, 2019) – A 25-year-old bicyclist identified as Matthew Travis Palacios was killed in a hit-and-run dump truck accident on East 125th Street and First Avenue in Manhattan.
New York police are saying that the accident took place around 3:00 a.m. The driver of the dump truck made an illegal left-turn as they were turning toward the Willis Avenue Bridge that connects Manhattan and the Bronx.
The driver of the truck hit Matthew Travis Palacios who was traveling in a bike lane coming off the bridge. The bicyclist was knocked to the ground and sustained serious injuries.
The driver of the dump truck did not stop to render aid to the victim and is currently being sought by police. Paramedics rushed to the scene in order to help Matthew Travis Palacios. He was transported to the Harlem Hospital but was later pronounced dead due to his injuries.
Yolanda Nieves is the mother of Matthew Travis Palacios and is asking the public’s held in finding the dump truck driver. A vigil was held by East 125th Street and First Avenue.
This has been the 27th fatal bicycle accident in New York City so far this year. This comes at the same time that city officials recently approved a $1.7 billion safety improvement plan.
Liability In Harlem Dump Truck Accidents
According to the Engineering News Record, “Serious accidents involving dump trucks and ready-mix concrete delivery trucks continue to edge up, part of a persistent, multi-industry problem with poor driving habits that has not yet responded to increased fleet and vehicle insurance premiums. Federal regulators and industry safety experts have sought to cut the accidents by limiting driver fatigue and using technology to keep a closer tab on what happens on the road.” In far too many circumstances profits, efficiency and speed of delivery are being placed over pedestrian safety.
Consider, for example, the disparity between accidents with private garbage trucks in New York vs state owned vehicles. State owned garbage trucks had significantly fewer accidents and were more likely to obey safety rules. At least with private garbage trucks safety has continued to erode over the past two years. According to data from the FMCSA fatal accidents in NYC have nearly doubled from 2014-2016 to 2016-2108.
If a dump truck driver makes a dangerous or illegal left turn and hits a pedestrian the company that they work for may be held at fault. According to New York Vehicle & Traffic Law Sec. 1141, “The driver of a vehicle intending to turn to the left within an intersection or into an alley, private road, or driveway shall yield the right of way to any vehicle approaching from the opposite direction which is within the intersection or so close as to constitute an immediate hazard.” Companies are generally held at fault for the negligent actions of their employees – insofar as those employees were working within the course and scope of their job duties.
Dump truck drivers are required to stop their vehicle after an accident. Failing to follow this law may result in penalties or even jail time. According to New York Vehicle and Traffic Law § 600 (2)(a), ““leaving the scene of an incident without reporting,” “other than for the mere failure of an operator to exhibit his or her license and insurance identification card for such vehicle or exchange the information required in such paragraph [(a) of Vehicle and Traffic Law § 600 (2)], shall constitute a class A misdemeanor….Any such violation committed by a person after such person has previously been convicted of such a violation shall constitute a class E felony.” Victims of dump truck accidents are protected by a number of laws.
The family of any victim that died in a dump truck accident may have legal recourse through a wrongful death claim. Damages in a civil claim can help cover lost wages, medical bills, funeral expenses, punitive damages, loss of love and emotional trauma. Potential beneficiaries in a civil dispute may include a victim’s parents, spouse, children or siblings. There are strict statute of limitations for civil claims, especially with state owned vehicles. A truck accident attorney can investigate your case free of cost and let you know what all of your legal rights are.
Investigating A Manhattan Dump Truck Accident
We at Pulvers, Pulvers & Thompson extend our deepest condolences to the family of Matthew Travis Palacios as they are going through such a difficult time. The dump truck driver involved in this accident should do the right thing and turn them-self into the police. Any person that may have seen this accident should call Crime Stoppers tip line at 800-577-TIPS. There needs to be some accountability for what happened. Beyond that, city officials need to do their part and take proactive measures to help make this intersection safer.