Janet Lee

Janet Lee
Photo:Janet Lee, injured by a taxi partition.

Saturday, March 02, 2013

Iman, Betsy Carter, Tom Glavin, Dauner Sanchez, Keith Lockheart, Barbara Windsor and Marc Summers Tell their partition injury stories


Dr. John Sherman - Assistant Clinical Professor of Surgery, New York Hospital, New York City - "The results are uniformly disastrous: patients with head wounds from dividers, fractured noses, lacerations and worse.  Last month I saw two patients die from taxi-related injuries.”

"Where the spirit does not work with the hand - there is no art." - Leonardo DaVinci

ON A FRIDAY NIGHT IN 1983, I was in a taxi in New York riding home from dinner with friends. A drunk driver ran a red light and hit the cab, and I was thrown toward the glass partition. I tried to duck, but my face hit the glass, and the impact fractured my cheekbone, my eye socket, my collarbone, and several ribs.            Iman (supermodel married to David Bowie)

I have been bringing these problems to the attention of the authorities for over 30 years.

Novelist Betsy Carter broke her upper and lower jawbones and lost almost all her teeth when she slammed into a partition in a taxi accident in the tunnel under Park Avenue in Midtown.
"My lips were ‘filleted' — that was the word my doctor used," she said of the accident, which she wrote about in her 2002 memoir, "Nothing to Fall Back On."

There is a moment when you stop letting life just happen to you. Mine came at 10:15 on a cold morning in 1983. I was in the back seat of a taxicab on my way to ESQUIRE  after an appointment at the dentist.  Smudges of snow lined the streets as the cab dipped into a tunnel  under Park Avenue. Engrossed in a New York Times story about David Bowie, I barely noticed the light go from sun-shine white, to chapel gray. Something about the instant dimness, a jerky turn of the wheel, I don’t know what - made my heart race. The cab rushed into the darkness. There was a wall of something solid, not moving in front of us. A stalled Chevy. Did the driver see what I saw? Shouldn’t he slam on the brakes? Why couldn’t I find the words to warn him?
In a slow horrifying, motion, every second took its own eternity. Hold on, hold on… but there was nothing to hold on to. The world was going sideways. I was hurtled forward. Launched was more like it. Shrieking tires, grinding metal. My body slammed into the partition in front of me. I heard the sound of a belly-flop from a high dive. I didn’t scream. I watched. And then there was silence; as terrifying as the commotion that preceded it. There was blood. I saw a hand I recognized as my own, shaking. My  teeth. They’d come undone. This had to be a dream, like dreams I’d had so often. I’m getting up to speak in front of a crowd, and all my teeth fall out. I’m opening the front door to greet a date; all my teeth fall out. I thought about my parents and what they’d suffered and that this is what that must feel like. A voice in an accent I can only describe as frantic, broke the silence. “Get out of my cab! You, get out now!”                    Betsy Carter (Esquire Mag. Editor)

Tom Glavin (NY Mets Pitcher) speaks about his partition impact injury in a taxi
"I guess it's a hard lesson to learn. I know probably every one of us are guilty at some point of time of getting in a cab in particular and not putting on a seat belt, but I will say I'm always diligent about it when I'm driving my own car, or in my own car, but probably neglectful like everybody else when I get in a cab."
The driver of the taxi, George Kovalonoks, 54, of Brooklyn, and the other vehicle, John Struble, 40, of West Milford, N.J., were both uninjured, police said.
Glavine's wife called him back immediately after the crash, and he called the Mets to tell them what happened. He was taken by ambulance to NYU Medical Center in Manhattan. He hopes to be fitted for temporary front teeth Friday and have the stitches removed Monday or Tuesday. It will be at least eight months before his mouth heals enough for him to get permanent replacement teeth.
"I actually kept the one that had fallen in my hand," he said. "The other one was halfway back in my mouth, I left it in there until I got to the hospital. They looked at it, tried to assess whether or not I could keep them. All the bone and whatnot I guess up there was battered and broken, so that's why they didn't keep the teeth."

Duaner Sanchez
  • Sanchez, 26, who was 5-1 with a 2.60 ERA in 49 games, Dawin and 30-year-old Milagros Rodriguez were riding a taxi south on I-95 near Northwest 79th Street in Miami at 1:44 a.m. Monday. The cab was hit by a Ford Crown Victoria, spun out of control and struck a concrete barrier, the Florida Highway Patrol said last night.
Sanchez, who was riding in the rear seat, apparently used his pitching arm to shield his head during a collision with the cab's bullet-proof partition, Dawin said in a phone interview. "He put his arm up so he wouldn't hurt his head." Minaya said doctors decided to operate immediately.
"He woke up [yesterday] and he was really in pain," Minaya said. "The doctors realized the ligaments in the area were torn. It was just a severe injury."
Dawin said his brother was taken in for surgery about 3:30 p.m. yesterday and hadn't come out by 7 p.m.
"He was feeling a little down because he's out for the rest of the season, but at least he knows he'll pitch again," Dawin said. Duaner Sanchez's cab accident in the early morning hours on Interstate 95 in Miami. Sanchez, out for a late-night food run, seperated his shoulder when a drunk driver slammed into the cab in which he was riding.


"It isn't that they can't see the solution. It is that they can't see the problem." - G.K.Chesterton


Keith Lockheart


Boston Pops conductor led with his chin
One day following an accident in a New York taxi, Boston Pops conductor Keith Lockhart was smiling and showing off the numerous stitches in his chin, the only part of his body injured in a dramatic two-vehicle collision.
"I'm very lucky," he said. "If you saw the taxi, you'd have sworn everyone in it died. I could have been carried away in a body bag.

Marc Summers

His face was crushed. The television personality Marc Summers broke almost every bone in his face.
“I’m lucky to be alive according to the doctors,” said Marc. You probably remember him from “Double Dare”, Marc now hosts and produces shows on the Food Network. He was in a Philadelphia taxi accident in August. He smashed into the credit card machine that’s mounted on the protective shield.

Barbara Windsor
The 65-year-old (UK) soap star, who plays Queen Vic landlady Peggy Mitchell, was treated for head injuries at University College Hospital in central London on Tuesday night after a taxi she was in crashed into a van.
Husband Scott Mitchell, 37, said the actress had been thrown against the glass partition of the cab and was "very lucky" not to have suffered more severe injuries.


I solved all of the drawbacks of using dangerous, illegal partitions with a better design. Why would I build a partition if they aren’t viable in taxis? I build partitions for police cruisers. It has always been my contention that partitions are not viable assault or robbery rate reduction devices. I expect to see no sales of even legal, safe partitions to cab owners who know that partitions just mean the robbery WITH a partition will most likely, be done with a gun. It is too easy, at any time, to point a gun through, or around the partition.

"There is nothing harder than the softness of indifference." Jaun Montalvo (1832-1889)

In the whole arena of automobile interior partitions there are some other sinister angles (besides trading off occupant safety in collisions for increased driver risk of murder in an unethical experiment with the lives of the unwitting public and the witting cab drivers involved), there are numerous incidents where prisoners have been thrust face-first into the steel grid of the police cruiser partition. 

There are too many cases where it was alleged by the police that the injuries from such contact were “self-inflicted”.
After much research I find it odd that cruiser partitions are the only thing most of these allegedly self-abusing prisoners ever strike their heads on.

Tim Ray - a Monee, Illinois police officer

WHAT'S TO DISCUSS? JUST AS LONG AS IT KEEPS ME AND SOME SCUM BAG APART, AND IT HAS A PIECE OF PLEXI GLASS BEHIND MY HEAD TO KEEP UNWANTED FLYING OBJECTS OUT OF MY HAIR, THAT'S HIGH TECH ENOUGH FOR ME. HERE'S  SOMETHING I LIKE TO DO WHEN YOU GET AN UNFRIENDLY PASSENGER IN YOUR CAR WHO LIKES TO RUN HIS MOUTH, PUT HIM ON THE PASSENGER SIDE WHERE THE WIRE SCREEN IS, AND WHILE HE IS RUNNING HIS MOUTH TELL HIM THAT YOU CAN'T HEAR HIM SO HE GETS RIGHT UP TO IT, AND WHEN HIS FACE GETS RIGHT THERE, SLAM ON YOUR BRAKES, I GUARANTEE IT SHUTS THEM UP EVERY TIME.
OH, IF HE ASKS WHY YOU DID THAT, TELL HIM YOU WERE AVOIDING AN ANIMAL CROSSING THE ROAD.

CYA IT WORKS  FOR ME

Tim Ray

"Industry without art, is brutality" Ananda Coomaraswamy
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