Monika Woroniecka: Daughter of NYC Doctor Killed after Falling from Moving Airstream While on Family Trip Says Trailer Had 'Significant Safety Oversight'

Helena called her mother's death a "pure accident," although she hinted at a potential flaw in the trailer's design, noting a significant safety oversight.

The Long Island doctor who was killed after falling out of her family's moving Airstream loved it so much that she nicknamed it and often slept inside even when it was parked in their driveway. Monika Woroniecka, 58, had stopped at a gas station to grab some ice cream while they were on their way to their AirBnb in Cape Vincent, New York, before falling to her death.

Woroniecka nicknamed her and her husband's gleaming new silver RV "Nebula" because it symbolized the spirit of adventure and discovery, according to her devastated daughter, Helena Woroniecka. Helena, who witnessed her mother's tragic death firsthand, described the incident as a "crazy accident."

In Love with Her Airstream

Monika Woroniecka
Monika Woroniecka Facebook

The accident happened on Saturday afternoon as the family was traveling through upstate New York to witness the solar eclipse. "She loved that trailer so much and poured her soul into it," Helena told The New York Post on Tuesday.

"She gathered shells from a beach at home and arranged them to spell 'Nebula' in a frame above the entrance," Helena said of her Woroniecka, a Stony Brook Medicine allergy specialist and married mother of three.

Monika Woroniecka
Monika Woroniecka X

"She would go in there even just to sleep at home when it was rainy and put so much love into it."

"She did also love to travel and explore, which is why my parents bought the trailer — they were planning to take an early retirement and travel to national parks and spend time exploring together," Helena said of the two-month-old vehicle.

"My mom loved her family above everything else, so the fact that my sister and I were coming home so everyone could go see the eclipse together — that's what she was most excited for was spending time with everyone," the heartbroken daughter said.

"She was so excited about this trip that for weeks beforehand, she was learning about space and researching different eclipse glasses and buying everyone's favorite groceries."

Helena called her mother's death a "pure accident," although she hinted at a potential flaw in the trailer's design, noting a significant safety oversight. She claimed that the door opened inward, which could have posed challenges, especially against strong winds.

Monika Woroniecka
The airstream trailer in which Dr. Monika Woroniecka was traveling with her family X

She told the outlet, "The doors on the Airstream open the opposite way that you would expect.

"It doesn't take an engineering degree to know that on any moving vehicle, whether a bus or a car or a trailer, doors should open against the wind, not towards it.

"That seems like a significant safety oversight to me and seems like the only reason they do open that way is to protect the awning of the trailer."

Blame Game On

Her husband, Robert Woroniecka, 59, was behind the wheel of the 2019 gray Ram pick-up truck, heading west on Route 12 E in Brownville around 3 pm on Saturday when the tragic incident occurred. Witnesses traveling behind the Airstream said they saw the passenger side door of the Airstream suddenly open, with Woroniecka's arm hanging on the door after the wind caused it to swing open.

Helena (right) and Alexandra (left)
Monika Woroniecka has at least two daughters Alexandra (left) and Helena (right) Facebook

Emergency responders arrived at the scene and transported her to Samaritan Medical Center, where she was later pronounced dead.

The family had planned to gather for Monday's celestial event, and they were expecting being together once more for Helena's wedding later in the year, according to neighbors who spoke to outlet.

Helena was lying in bed inside the Airstream when her mother went to "secure" the door. According to state police, she was still holding onto the handle when the door unexpectedly swung open, propelling her onto the pavement.

Officials at Airstream, the manufacturer of the trailer, released a statement this week saying that their products are not intended to carry passengers while in motion.

Moreover, New York state law explicitly prohibits anyone from riding inside a trailer while it is being towed by another vehicle.

Monika Woroniecka
Monika Woroniecka Facebook

"This trip was the first time they would be back in that town, and she was excited to see their old apartment and the old town, and it so happens that she died in the same hospital I happened to be born in," Helena said.

Monika and Robert were both born in Poland in 1965 and immigrated to the United States in 1992, as confirmed by their daughter.

Initially, they lived in Sackets Harbor from 1996 to 199 before relocating to Long Island, she said.