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Third-Rail Subway Explosion: ‘Accidents Happen’ Says Union Rep

An experienced MTA worker is in the burn unit of New York-Presbyterian Hospital after a subway explosion several days ago. Suffering from severe burns on much of his body, he is the most critically injured of four transport workers harmed in the accident.

The explosion occurred as the MTA crew was working on the tracks at Union Square. A cable made contact with the third rail, creating the explosion.

“When you work in a system with live train traffic and a live third rail, industrial accidents happen,” said John Samuelson, head of Transport Workers Local Union 100.

While Samuelson is right, there are serious risks involved with MTA power work, it is unacceptable to accept that it is just part of the job description for an MTA worker suffers severe burn injuries to his face, neck and legs.

Something went wrong and it should be examined thoroughly so that similar industrial accidents can be prevented in the future. In NYC construction accidents, the authorities always uncover serious violations leading to the injuries. We would anticipate a similar response when authorities release their accident report on the Union Square subway accident.

New York MTA workers are generally protected by workers’ compensation, but in some accidents the circumstances also permit the victim to file a third-party lawsuit. An experienced New York injury attorney can help an injured worker learn his or her legal rights.


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