22 construction workers were injured in New York City during the month of May compared to 6 during the month of April and 51 during the same month a year earlier. As most New Yorkers were still required to stay home during the month of May, more than 5,000 non essential construction sites were authorized to re-open at the end of April on the condition that they were following the Covid-19 safety protocol for the industry such as disinfecting tools, social distancing and wearing masks. The gradual opening of New York City construction sites lead to a small increased in the number of hard hats injured on the job in NYC. There were no deaths recorded during the month of May. So far since the beginning of 2020 only one worker died on a New York construction site in February. Manhattan had the highest number of injuries, followed by Brooklyn, the Bronx and Queens.
Most injuries were minors and classified under “others” and the few others were related to falls. Fall is the most common cause of accident injuries and deaths in the construction industry not only in New York City but also in the US.
12 construction workers were injured on Manhattan construction sites. Some injuries were minors. A worker cut his finger with a box cutter, another one punctured his foot after walking on a nail.
A worker was transported to the hospital to treat a back injury after a shoring became loose and fell on him during a framing and shoring operation. Another hard hat was also transported to the hospital after he cut his hand with a miter saw when cutting metal.
4 workers had to be taken to the hospital after they fell at 4 different construction sites. Two falls occurred because the guardrails were missing. Another worker fell from an extension ladder. The fourth worker fell after he released his harness from a column clamp and attempted to walk around the column on an elevated platform.
In the Bronx, a construction worker tripped on her own foot and fell. She suffered a twisted ankle. Another construction worker was injured after a brick fell on his elbow during a masonry job. . The worker was working on a sidewalk shed with a a crew while another crew was working on the ninth floor of the building using a supported pipe scaffolding. The accident occurred when a worker on the ninth floor unintentionally dropped a brick that fell on a worker located on the shed. When the DOB inspectors arrived at the site they found that the operations were not discussed during the pre-shift safety meeting, that the housekeeping at the site was not effectuated in accordance with the code and that the supported pipe scaffolding did not conform to plans. The site was hit with 8 ECB violations.
6 hard hats were injured on Brooklyn construction sites in May. Among them, an electrician twisted his ankle after he missed a step, a worker fell from a baker scaffolding and broke his ankle and 2 workers were injured during a formwork operation.
In Queens, a newly hired worker who did not receive a site-specific orientation and was not briefed on the hazards related to his activities slipped and injured his knee when transporting material to the roof. Another worker suffered shoulder injury when erecting aluminium vertical and horizontal shoring in a cellar for a first floor concrete slab.
Globally, injuries occurring on New York Construction sites during the month of May were low, mostly because many sites were still closed or operating at lower capacity to comply with the Covid-19 protocol.