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Kloepfer v. Aslanis

Supreme Court of New York, Second Department

May 22, 2013

Lynn Kloepfer, appellant,
v.
Pantelis Aslanis, et al., respondents. Index No. 2464/10

Farley & Kessler, P.C., Jericho, N.Y. (Richard L. Farley, Susan R. Nudelman, and Daniel Fried of counsel), for appellant.

Ryan, Perrone & Hartlein, P.C., Mineola, N.Y. (Robin Mary Heaney and William T. Ryan of counsel), for respondents.

MARK C. DILLON, J.P., CHERYL E. CHAMBERS, LEONARD B. AUSTIN, SHERI S. ROMAN, JJ.

DECISION & ORDER

In an action to recover damages for personal injuries, the plaintiff appeals, as limited by her brief, from so much of an order of the Supreme Court, Queens County (Golia, J.), dated February 23, 2012, as granted the defendants' motion for summary judgment dismissing the complaint.

ORDERED that the order is affirmed insofar as appealed from, with costs.

The plaintiff allegedly was injured in a house owned by the defendants when he slipped or tripped and fell while descending the staircase leading from his first-floor apartment to the basement.

The defendants established their prima facie entitlement to judgment as a matter of law by demonstrating, through the plaintiff's deposition testimony, that he could not identify what caused him to fall (see Dennis v Lakhani, 102 A.D.3d 651, 652; Miles v County of Dutchess, 85 A.D.3d 878, 878; Aquilar v Anthony, 80 A.D.3d 544, 545; Plowden v Stevens Partners, LLC, 45 A.D.3d 659).

In opposition, the plaintiff failed to raise a triable issue of fact. Although the plaintiff submitted an affidavit from an engineer who asserted that the staircase violated several provisions of the New York State Uniform Fire Prevention and Building Code, including a provision requiring a railing on the open side of the staircase, the plaintiff presented no evidence connecting these alleged violations to his fall. Thus, it would be speculative to assume that these alleged violations were a proximate cause of the accident (see Thompson v Commack Multiplex Cinemas, 83 A.D.3d 929, 930; Murphy v New York City Tr. Auth., 73 A.D.3d 1143, 1144; Reiff v Beechwood Browns Rd. Bldg. Corp., 54 A.D.3d 1015, 1015-1016; Plowden v Stevens Partners, LLC, 45 A.D.3d at 660).

The plaintiff's remaining contentions are without merit.

Accordingly, the Supreme Court properly granted the defendants' motion for summary judgment dismissing the complaint.

DILLON, J.P., CHAMBERS, AUSTIN and ROMAN, JJ., concur.


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