Disability Law

Blind Lawyer Injured by Speeding Cyclist Files ADA Suit over Central Park Safety

A blind lawyer injured when a bicyclist struck him in Central Park has drafted a suit from his hospital bed claiming New York City is violating the Americans With Disabilities Act by failing to make the park safe for people with disabilities.

Lawyer Richard Bernstein of Farmington Hills, Mich., filed the suit Thursday in Detroit federal court, report the Detroit News, Crain’s Detroit Business and the New York Daily News.

Bernstein, 38, was in New York to train for a marathon when he was hit by the bicyclist on Aug. 13, breaking his hip. Though the bicyclist was estimated to be traveling at 35 miles an hour, 10 miles above the speed limit, Bernstein has no plans to sue him.

Instead, he wants to focus on New York’s alleged failure to consistently enforce the 25 mile-an-hour speed limit and other rules governing cyclists.

Bernstein is not asking for damages or attorney fees. His intent, he says, is to force a change. “The only reason I filed this lawsuit was because the mayor was unwilling to do anything to make this park safer,” Bernstein told Crain’s Detroit Business.

The accident may prevent Bernstein from competing in marathons, but he hopes the incident will lead to a positive result. “This happened for a reason,” Bernstein told the Daily News. “We are going to make this park safe.”

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