2015-07-22 / Front Page

Man Impaled On Ridgewood Fence

By Liz Goff

A 40-year-old man remains in critical condition at Wyckoff Heights Medical Center, recovering from horrific injuries he suffered while biking in Ridgewood on Sunday morning.

Police sources told the Gazette the man, whose family has requested anonymity, was bicycling along Woodward Avenue near Stockholm Street in Rigewood at about 11:42 am on July 19, when his bike crashed into a large pothole in a bicycle path on Woodward Avenue.

Eyewitnesses told police the impact tossed the man off his bicycle and onto a sidewalk, police sources said.

“It was awful. He fell really hard. He hit his head really hard on the concrete, then stood up and wobbled around,” an eyewitness told police. “The poor guy stumbled around like he didn’t know what happened, and then he fell onto the fence,” an eyewitnesses said. “The fence went right through his neck. It went in one side and pierced through the other side,” the eyewitness said. “It was so awful, but everybody on the street went to look to see if they could help him.”

Firefighters cut through a portion of the fence to enable them to transport the man to Wyckoff Heights Medical Center, where he remains listed in critical but stable condition.

Officials at the city’s Office of Emergency Management (OEM) surveyed the scene immediately following the accident and requested emergency repair of the pothole, authorities said. A crew of workers from the city Department of Transportation arrived at the site a short while later and paved over the gaping pothole, authorities said.

City lawmakers passed a law in 2013 that prohibits the use of spike-topped fences around construction sites within the five boroughs, citing potential danger they could cause to the public.

The sale and installation of the spike-topped fences in New York City was limited under a law passed by the City Council in the late 1990s, which includes a provision that allows property owners to keep pre-existing spike-topped fences as-of-right, authorities said.

Under the provision, property owners are not required to remove spike-topped fences or install top railings to fences that were installed prior to the law.

“Someone should do something to outlaw those fences,” said a neighbor who declined to give her name. “This man is very lucky to be alive. I understand people put up those fences to keep out burglars and criminals, but someone is going to get killed by one of them.”

Return to top

Copyright 1999-2018 The Service Advertising Group, Inc. All rights reserved.