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.
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New legal obligation for NYC construction workers in regards to Site Safety Training to reduce hard hat fatalities and injuries

SST new cardNew York City construction workers and their supervisors who are working on large or complex construction sites will be legally required to have a Site Safety Training Card issued by the NYC DOB Training Connect Platform.

These cards are equipped with a chip and can be scanned to validate their authenticity. This new legal requirement will take effect on February 1st 2023. Workers who have a SST card issued before January 1st 2022 have to contact the facility that provided them with training and ask them to replace their card with a new card that can only be issued through the NYC DOB Training Connect Platform.

Since  2017, after a peak in construction accident fatalities in New York City, a new construction law was adopted in an effort to reduce construction workers injuries and fatalities. The law  requires every hard hat working on a New York City construction site to attend site safety training classes and to carry a card attesting that they did it.  Unfortunately, while every worker is supposed to sit in classrooms for a certain amount of hours and learn about site safety, some unscrupulous contractors didn’t want to allow their workers to spend so much time sitting in classes and just issued fake cards to them. Other workers got fake cards from unscrupulous individuals and unauthorized course providers started to proliferate issuing invalid certificates to workers.

Massive frauds uncovered

For example, last year an investigation by the New York State Inspector’s office uncovered a gigantic scheme to provide workers with fake ID documents including fake Site Safety Training cards. The investigation was started after a worker showed up at the Javis Center site with a fake OSHA card. Major state infrastructure projects such as the Jacob Javits Center Expansion Project are closely monitored by the New York State Inspector General’s Office using compliance and risk monitoring firms. In 2019, an in depth investigation started after one of these firms informed the New York State Inspector’s office about the fake card. Investigation found that the worker obtained the card from 28 year old Pedro Vasquez and paid through CashApp. From there an undercover investigator pretending to be a construction worker obtained multiple identification cards including fake OSHA cards, Social Security Cards and Driving Licenses from various states from Vasquez. The investigation uncovered that Vasquez was advertising the fake IDs though social medias posts and selling them for thousands of dollars. The investigation also found that he was working in tandem with 30 year old Michael Kruise Williams who was producing the fake IDs. Williams bought printing equipment and blank ID cards from Florida and sent money to China to get holograms for ID cards.

In another case the DOB had to revoke certificates issued by unauthorized course providers

The construction industry has one of the highest rates of mortality among all industries, therefore it is important that workers are proprely trained about site safety. Hopefully the new card equipped with the chip will prevent the actual troubling number of frauds.

Read the Service Update from the NYC Department of Buildings