Firm Operations Continue Uninterrupted During the Coronavirus. Click for More Information ›
Gair, Gair, Conason, Rubinowitz, Bloom, Hershenhorn, Steigman & Mackauf is a New York Plaintiff's personal injury law firm specializing in automobile accidents, construction accidents, medical malpractice, products liability, police misconduct and all types of New York personal injury litigation.

Articles Posted in Construction Accident

Published on:

Construction Safety Conference NYC 2021How to prevent injuries and deaths caused by construction accidents in New York City is the main subject of the yearly Build Safe, Live Safe Conference organized by the NYC Department of Buildings.

The conference is digital for the second consecutive year because of the ongoing Covid19 restrictions in regards to large gatherings in indoor spaces.  The event started this Monday and continues until Friday.

The Conference which takes place during the same week as National Construction Safety Week, and OSHA’s National Safety Stand-Down to Prevent Falls in Construction is free and covers a broad area of subjects related to safety and sustainability in the construction industry in New York City such as :

Published on:

Safety Stand down to prevent fall in construction 2021The annual Safety Stand-Down to Prevent Falls in Construction started Today and will last all week-long.

In 2019, among the 1,061 construction workers fatalities recorded in the US by the Bureau of Labor and Statistics, 401 of them were caused by falls.  Most of these accidents could have been prevented if adequate safety measures were in place. Many fall fatalities could be avoided by following these 5 basic rules:

  1. Always use fall protection if you are working at 6 feet or more
Published on:

Location-of-the-actual-tunnelsA group of New York contractors are asking US Transportation Secretary Buttigieg to waive the NY Scaffold Law on the Hudson River Project.

Fall is the number one cause of fatalities among construction workers in New York City and nationwide. Most of these fatalities are preventable and are the result of negligence. In New York,  the Scaffold Safety Law ensures that New York construction workers and their family  are being fully protected if they are injured or killed while working on scaffolds, ladders or other similar devices. If a contractor violates this law by not providing adequate safety equipment to his workers and if as a result, a worker dies or sustains injuries, the contractor will be liable for the accident and a lawsuit can be brought against him by the construction worker or by his family.

In the case of the Hudson Tunnel project, a group of contractors consisting of  the Minority & Women Contractors & Developers Association, the Associated General Contractors of New York State and the General Contractors Association of New York as well as the New York Sate Conference of Mayors and Municipal Officials have asked  the US Transportation Secretary to  replace the New York Scaffold Safety Law with a comparative negligence standard. They argue that the New York Scaffold increases their insurance cost.

Published on:

construction workers working at height in NYCThe American National Standards Institute (ANSI) was created in 1918. Its goal was to standardize various manufacturing, engineering or safety processes. The first project focused on pipe thread sizes. In  1992, ANSI developed the  “ANSI/ASSE Z359.1 American National Standard” for personal fall arrest systems in non-construction occupations. This standard was revised and improved significantly since it was released and has become a worldwide reference while designing and testing the performance of products and techniques used by construction workers while working at heights.

This Afternoon  at 2:00 pm ET and ahead of the National Safety Stand-Down to Prevent Falls, the Center for Construction Research and Training is hosting a free webinar with members of the ANSI Z359 Accredited Standards Committee. The webinar will be a Q&A panel during which participants will learn tips and techniques to use the ANSI/ASSE Z359 standards on construction sites and protect workers from fall. (click here to register for the event and send your questions to the panel).

While adhering to the ANSI/ASSE Z359 standards is voluntary,  those who do so are keeping up to date with the most recent findings related to protecting workers from falls. Very often regulators such as OSHA are referring to ANSI standards to develop regulations.

Published on:

2 construction workers died  and 79 were injured on the job in New York City during the first two months of 2021. One fatality occurred in  Staten Island and the other one in Manhattan. In both cases the worker fell. Last year, only one worker died in NYC construction accidents over the first 2 months of the year and the year before, no fatalities were recorded during the same period. Since 2015, the number of construction worker fatalities during the first two months of the year varied between 0 and 2. Among the 79 workers injured, 41 of them were injured in fall accidents. (click on graphs for full size)

construction accident deaths by borough February 2021
Falls remain the most common cause of fatalities for construction workers in New York City. The two fatal accidents that occurred in February were falls. Both accidents could have been prevented if adequate safety measures had been in place. The first accident took place on a construction site located at 730 5th Avenue in Manhattan. The worker who died was cleaning an area where a permanent building trash chute was being installed. He stepped on a hole cover that snapped and gave way. The worker fell to the floor below. He was transported to the hospital where he died from his injuries. The second fatal accident occurred at 144 Dunham Street in Staten Island. A roofer fell from the roof and did not survive the injuries he sustained during the fall. The inspectors found that the working permit for the construction site had expired. Multiple safety infractions were found at the site and the DOB issued a full stop work order for failure to safeguard persons and property. Roofers have the highest rate of fatalities among all categories of construction workers.

Factors in NYC fatal construction accidents February 21
79 construction workers were injured in New York City during the first two months of the year. This is the lowest number of workers injured during the first two months of the year since 2017. 48 of these accidents took place in Manhattan, 14 in Brooklyn, 11 in Queens, 4 in the Bronx and 1 in Staten Island.

Published on:

crane in New yorkOn April 26th, as part of the second National Stand-Down to prevent struck by accidents among construction workers, two free webinars will be offered by the NORA Construction Sector Council.

The first webinar will take place from 1:00 pm to 2:00 pm and will focus on preventing struck by-accidents that occur around cranes and during lifting operations. According to statistics from the Center for Construction Research and Training, one crane accident occurs for every 10,000 hours of use. Crane collapsing or crane tipping are among the most common crane accidents. In these types of accidents, construction workers have a high risk to be crushed not only by the crane but also by the heavy material carried by the crane.  Most of the time these accidents occur because of human errors such as:

  • not using the manufacturer’s load charge for the crane
Published on:

construction worker using laptopInspections by the DOT play an important role in keeping NYC construction sites safe and preventing dangerous construction accidents. The covid19  crisis has demonstrated that new online technologies can sometimes be used to replace meetings in person or visiting locations, saving time and resources.  The NYC Department of Building is testing  options to conduct Remote Video Inspections instead of sending inspectors on location.

A pilot program that started on March 19th is now being run until April 30 and proposing to Staten Island contractors who require a CO-NB-ALT1 Construction DEV inspection and to Brooklyn contractors who require a “SWO Rescission/Work Without Permit Construction ENF” inspection to do these remotely.

While doing the request for such inspections, contractors have the option to fill out a Request for a Remote Video Inspection and Attestation. The contractor and any other authorized attendees will then receive an email invitation for the remote inspection with a link to an app that attendees can download on their phone to participate in the online inspection.

Published on:

Hard-Rock-Hotel-construction-accident-e1582228604154The construction industry saw a period of growth during the last decade and with more workers employed, the number of hard hat injuries and deaths also increased.

The Center for Construction Research and Training (CPWR) recently published a study looking at construction worker fatal injuries from 2011 to 2019. They found that while the number of workers employed in the industry grew by more than 25%  between 2011 and 2019, the number of fatal injuries recorded a 41.1% increase. While looking at ethnicity, Hispanic workers were the most commonly hired workers and their employment rate grew by 55% during the period under review. They also recorded a jump in 89.8% in job fatalities.

While looking at construction workers ‘age, the middle age workers category (45 to 64 year old) recorded the highest number of deaths, however while looking at the rate of fatalities, workers over 65 years old were the most at risk of dying on the job with a rate of 22 deaths per 100,000 Full time workers (FTWs), compared to 9.6 per 100,000 FTWs for workers under 55 years old.

Published on:

fall prevention 2021Despite safety regulations and awareness campaigns falls continue to be the number one cause of deaths and injuries among construction workers.  According to the most recent data from the Bureau of Labor and Statistics, among the 1008 construction worker fatalities recorded nationally in 2018, 320 were fall fatalities.

To continue raising awareness about the risks of fall, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) is partnering with multiple construction safety advocates and governmental organizations  such as  the Center for Construction Research and Training (CPWR), the National Construction Safety Executives (NCSE),  the National Occupational Research Agenda (NORA),  the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH),  the American Society of Safety Professionals (ASSP), the U.S. Navy to educate as many construction workers as possible on fall safety.

Any companies involved in construction can participate in the Stand-Down 2021 and will receive a certificate of participation if they do so

Published on:

safety on construction site is keyPreventing construction accidents and making sure every hard hat is safe on a job site should be a priority for every contractor and developer. Recently Construction Dive looked at the construction safety trends for 2021. Here is a summary:

  • OSHA penalties have been adjusted to the inflation rate and now the maximum penalty for serious and other-than-serious violations is $13,653 per violation compared to 13,494 last year. The maximum penalty for for willful or repeated violations is now $136,532 per violation. It was $134,937 per violation last year.
  • OSHA also announced that it changed the system used to collect penalties. Violators will receive a series of 3 payment letters that will be sent 7, 30 and 60 days after a violator failed to timely pay the penalty. A phone call will also be made 14 days after the payment due date. Establishments that are not on an affordable payment plan and did not pay a penalty will be put on a priority list for further inspection.