South Orange, NJ – Woman Injured in Fall When Faulty Manhole Cover Gives Way in South OrangeNY/NJ Legal News
South Orange, NJ (July 27, 2022) – A woman was walking home on Monday, July 25th when the ground beneath her opened up and she fell partway down a manhole in South Orange.
The victim, Venessa Diagne, screamed for help as she put all her strength into not falling the rest of the way down the manhole. Some neighbors came to her aid.
According to a local source, the cover for this particular manhole rises when it rains, presenting a hazardous situation for anyone on the sidewalk.
Underneath the raised cover, stagnant, muddy water that was not properly draining could be seen.
Diagne sustained non-critical injuries to one of her legs and the righthand side of her torso.
Two of Diagne’s neighbors have previously fallen into the manhole.
The city of South Orange said it is investigating the incident.
Our thoughts are with the injured victim and their family at this time. We hope for their full recovery.
Liability for Manhole Cover Accidents in New Jersey
Most victims of manhole accidents are uncertain of their rights and don’t know who is liable for their injuries. The personal injury lawyers at Metro Law have ample experience when it comes to handling these kinds of claims. They can effectively identify the person or entity responsible for the injuries and damages you sustained.
The most common kinds of accidents resulting from sunken, loose, or open manhole covers are:
- Pedestrian accidents: When a manhole cover on a pedestrian walkway or sidewalk is loose, open, or not level with the ground, pedestrians can fall into or trip over them.
- Motor vehicle accidents: On a street, an open manhole can lead to a driver losing control of their vehicle, swerving and striking other cars, or getting a tire stuck in the open hole. Manhole covers that are loose can roll away or be tossed into the air, hitting vehicles, pedestrians, or bicycle riders in the area.
- Construction worker accidents: A construction worker might be injured when they fall or trip during a manhole accident due to the fact that they work in areas where the covers are often left open or deliberately loosened for work.
Manholes allow construction and city workers to easily access utilities and underground pipelines. An accident could be the result of a construction worker not replacing a manhole cover properly and securely after finishing repair work. Perhaps a city worker failed to adequately inspect a street following construction. No matter what the reason, the odds are that your manhole accident was entirely preventable and was the result of another person’s negligence.
In most New Jersey manhole accident claims, the city is liable because they are responsible for the maintenance and safety of all sidewalks and public roadways. There are cases, however, where a local entity, such as a construction company, could also be held responsible. A prompt and thorough investigation by our personal injury attorneys is essential to establishing and proving liability so you can obtain full financial compensation for your damages.
The lawyers at Metro Law are always available to assist our clients by addressing any questions or concerns they might have about legal options open to them after being injured by someone’s carelessness. Contact the personal injury attorneys at Metro Law by calling (800) 469-6476 to schedule a free case assessment.
Notes: Outside sources were used in the creation of this post including news bulletins and first-hand accounts of the accident and injuries involved. As a result, the details of the accident presented have not been independently verified. If you have identified any false information in the story or would like the post to be removed, please inform us immediately, and we will correct the information or remove the post.
Disclaimer: As a member of the local community, we at Metro Law strive to improve the overall safety and quality of life for everyone who lives in our beloved state. We are extremely saddened by these accidents but hope that through an awareness of these dangers, those in our community will take precautions to avoid these accidents. This is not a solicitation for business, and this information should not be misconstrued as medical or legal advice. We wish only the best and quickest recovery to all those involved in the accident. The photos depicted in this post are not from the actual accident scene.