This unfortunate saga began on April 26, 2010 when at approximately 4:30 AM, 45 year old Track Supervisor James Knell died after he came into contact with the electrified third rail at the Beach 90th Street & Station in Queens.
A couple of days later, a report in the New York Daily News claims the death could have been avoided had proper safety regulations been followed. Almost 2 months later, an internal report revealed that Mr. Knell was moving a container of spikes weighing at least 90 pounds when he fell.
According to the New York Daily News, the family is set to file a $50 million wrongful death suit against the city. John Marzulli has more in this brief report:
The widow of a track worker electrocuted on a third rail in Queens is set to file a $50 million wrongful death suit against the city, the Daily News has learned.
Jackie Knell will file a notice to sue today, charging there were numerous violations at the work site April 26, when her husband slipped and fell.
Lawyer Sanford Rubenstein said the “third-rail protecting boards were removed and there was no signage or lights alerting employees of the exposed third rail.”
The News reported last month that a preliminary investigation of the tragedy raised a number of safety concerns, including that Knell was lugging 90 pounds of spikes when he apparently lost his balance.
A spokeswoman for NYC Transit declined to comment.
This case should prove interesting as it would probably reveal the exact safety regulations in place along with which were not followed prior to his death. Hopefully in the end, another incident like this will never occur again.