Manhole Explosions Common this Winter in New York City
The occurrences of manhole explosions have increased dramatically this winter in New York City. In fact, utility company Con Edison estimates that within the period of February 1-3 alone, it responded to approximately 200 different manhole explosions throughout the city.
One incident led to a man being hit in the head by a flying manhole cover after a blast, causing severe head trauma. The man was just walking his dog in Park Slope near Fourth and Fifth streets. He was taken to the hospital, as was a second person who suffered an injury when the manhole explosion shattered her home’s windows.
Manhole explosions this time of the year are fairly common in cities like New York that are in colder, snowier climates. This is because the salt that is used to de-ice city roads leaks under the surface and corrodes wiring.
That was the cause of this particular explosion, which witnesses say could be felt and heard from up to 10 blocks away. A representative of Con Edison says that the agency is always looking for new ways to decrease the likelihood of fires and explosions in manholes, but a big part of preventing these explosions would be to find new technology, such as corrosion-resistant wiring.
New York City has been hit particularly hard with snow in recent weeks, meaning these issues could continue to persist over the next several weeks or months. If you or someone you know has been injured as a result of a manhole explosion, contact an experienced New York personal injury attorney with Barasch McGarry Salzman & Penson.