Motorcyclist taking legal action after crash involving streetcar line

Suffered broken arm after track allegedly caught tire

A motorcyclist who crashed while attempting to navigate across the Milwaukee streetcar tracks near the Milwaukee Public Market is taking legal action against the city.

Milwaukee law firm Hupy and Abraham S.C. announced Friday that Aaron Henning, of Milwaukee, had hired its president, Michael Hupy. The law firm touts itself as “a longtime supporter and presence in the motorcycle community” and describes the case as one involving “Milwaukee’s first injured streetcar track victim.”

According to the law firm, Henning was headed east on St. Paul Avenue on July 26 around 8:50 p.m. and attempted to change lanes to turn left onto Water Street. His motorcycle’s front tire allegedly became wedged in the streetcar track, throwing him from the bike. The law firm says he landed in the opposite lane of traffic and broke his arm.

Aaron Henning at the Hupy and Abraham office with the firm’s president, Michael Hupy.

“I have been a vocal critic of the streetcar from (the) beginning, because we have buses that do what streetcars can do without endangering motorcyclists and bicyclists,” Hupy said, adding there is concern in the motorcycle community that similar incidents will continue happening now that the tracks are in place.

Hupy filed a notice of injury with the city on Wednesday, claiming the city and its Department of Public Works were liable for Henning’s injury. Filing a notice would allow Henning to take the city to court in the future. The document also says a notice of damages will be filed at a later date.

The notice claims the city and Kiewit Infrastructure Co. negligently constructed or installed the “trolley tracks” and failed “to properly warn motorists of an unsafe condition in the roadway.”

It is addressed to the city clerk and the Department of Public Works.

Mayor Tom Barrett’s office directed questions to the city attorney’s office, which said it had not received the claim yet.

The area where Aaron Henning says his motorcycle wheel got stuck in a streetcar track, allegedly causing him to crash and break his arm.

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Arthur covers banking and finance and the economy at BizTimes while also leading special projects as an associate editor. He also spent five years covering manufacturing at BizTimes. He previously was managing editor at The Waukesha Freeman. He is a graduate of Carroll University and did graduate coursework at Marquette. A native of southeastern Wisconsin, he is also a nationally certified gymnastics judge and enjoys golf on the weekends.

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