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 Tagged with New York Construction Accident

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craneAfter two successive crane accidents in New York including one fatal, the company United Crane and Rigging was temporary barred from continuing work at 22 construction sites in the city. The NYC DOB will allow the company to restart work only after it replaces some of the employees involved in the recent accidents that occurred on July 30 in the East Village and in April in Soho. On July 30, the company had a crane working at a site located at 749 FDR Drive. The operator of the crane was lifting steel beans when the boom of the crane bent and partially collapsed. The operator then lost control of the load which struck the building before falling on the ground. Thankfully nobody was injured but investigators found that the load lifted by the crane weighted 4,400 pounds while the maximum lifting capacity was 3,700 pounds. Back in April,  34 year old Gregory Echevarria, a war hero who served several deployments in Iraq and Afghanistan died and two other construction workers were injured after a counterweight fell and crushed him during a crane installation by the same operator (see previous blog).

To be able to restart work on its 22 construction sites, United Crane and Rigging has to provide proof to the NYC Department of Buildings that the engineer of record, master rigger, lift director, assembly and disassembly and hoisting machine operators have all been replaced with new staff. Additionally the company also has to hire an independent monitor who will report to the DOB on United Crane and Rigging’s safety compliance.The negligent crane company was also hit with 5 DOB violations for:

  1. inadequate safety measures on site
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Gregory EchevarriaA NYC hard hat who was installing a crane died after the counter weight he was setting fell on him.

34 year old Gregory Echevarria was part of a crew installing a crane at a luxury residential development located at 570 Broome Street in Soho early Saturday morning. A little bit after 3:00 am the crane counterweight that Echevarria was installing slipped and fatally struck him. The crew immediately called 911. When the EMS crew arrived they found him unresponsive with severe injuries all over his body. He was declared dead at the scene of the accident. Two other workers were also injured in the accident.  People who were in the area at the time of the accident reported a very loud sound as the 7.5 ton counterweight fell.

After the accident the crane was moved and a stop work order was issued by the Department of Buildings. The 570 Broom project is being built by  Agime Group. KSK Construction Group is managing the construction project. The DOB previously received several safety complaints for the site.

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311 E. 50th Street scaffolding accident locationA stone fell on the head of a NYC construction worker and killed him on Monday. 51 year old Nelson Salinas from Queens was on a scaffold, repairing the facade of  an Upper East Side residential building in Manhattan when the accident occurred.   A delivery man saw him dangling in midair with his head covered in blood and called 911. The worker was rushed to the hospital but he couldn’t be saved.

Nelson Salinas who was employed by Vlad Restoration, was performing minor facade repair on a suspended scaffold system. He was located at the 7th floor level of the 14-story building locates at 311 E. 50th Street near Second Ave when a coping stone that may have been knocked loose by the equipment used to secure the scaffolding to the facade fell on his head.  According to the Department of Buildings investigators the stone was a piece of the building’s parapet.  Read more about the accident in the NY Daily News

Preventing NYC Scaffold Accidents

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carbon monoxide danger signNine construction workers were hospitalized after they suffered from carbon monoxide poisoning last week in Manhattan. The construction workers were putting down concrete in a very small confined space in the foundations of a construction site located at 30 E. 29th St. in Manhattan. The site is the future location of a 639-foot-tall luxury residential art Deco-Inspired skyscraper developed by the Rockefeller Group.
A gasoline generator that was also running in the same space to provide electrical power poisoned the workers with carbon monoxide fumes. Gasoline generators that are releasing carbon monoxide are not supposed to be used indoors or in places that are not ventilated. Carbon monoxide can not be smelled but it can kill in minutes.  Warning signs of Carbon monoxide poisoning are similar to flu or cold symptoms and include weakness, fainting, dizziness, headache, nausea and shortness of breath.
The FDNY received a first call for a sick worker around 4:30 pm. The worker was feeling ill and dizzy. When they arrived other workers who had been able to get out of the underground space by themselves were also feeling sick. Two of their colleagues however were so ill that they had to be lifted up by the firefighters. A total of 65 firefighters and paramedics had to be called to the rescue to extricate the workers safely from the confined space.
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dangerous skyscraper construction sites in ManhattanLast week a giant concrete slab fell from the 26th floor of a skyscraper construction site and crashed into the roof of a sixth story building next to it, destroying the studio apartment of 34 year old Steven Jones. Jones was taking a shower at the time of the accident. If he would have been in his kitchen instead he would be dead. Instead miraculously he only  suffered minor injuries. While he was in the shower, Jones heard what he thought was an explosion and walked out of his bathroom to discover a huge hole in his ceiling and thick dust all over. Jones tried to get out of his apartment but the debris was blocking the entrance as well as the fire escape. Firefighters came to the rescue. They were able to clean the debris and get him out of his apartment safely while the rest of the building was evacuated. The slab of concrete fell after the the 26th floor of the skyscraper under construction at 1059 Third Avenue collapsed.  The Department of Buildings issued a full stop work order for the site. According to their records, a similar accident previously occurred a month earlier and the DOB had already issued a partial stop work order between floors 26th and 30th after debris fell and broke the glass roof of a nearby townhouse. The stop order was lifted after an inspection determined that the violation had been corrected. Apparently the problem was still there.

Construction elevator dangling 30 stories on top of sidewalk

On Monday another freaky accident occurred at a super skyscraper construction site located on 57th Street near Sixth Avenue. An exterior elevator came loose on the 58th Street side of the building and began smashing against the building sending glass and other debris onto the street below. The police closed the entire area for hours. Tenants were evacuated from the top floors of a nearby building.  Customers were stuck in restaurants for hours until the heavy elevator that was dangling from the scaffolding 3o stories above the street was removed. Again the worst was avoided and nobody was injured as the cold kept many New Yorkers inside and very few pedestrians were in the street when the accident occurred around 8:00 pm.

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Gotham residential construction siteLast June, two construction workers were seriously injured in a mini-crane accident in New York because of the negligence of their contractor, Western Waterproofing Co. Inc from St. Louis (see previous blog).

The accident occurred after two supervisors working for the contractor rented a mini-crane, installed it on the fourth floor of the construction site and instructed an untrained worker to lift heavy curtain wall panels with it. The load was too heavy and the crane tipped and fell four stories down. Two workers, Jorge Delgado and Christopher Jackson were seriously injured during the accident.

Last week, OSHA cited the Missouri contractor for exposing employees to serious injuries and proposed a $155,204 fine against the company.

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the church before the collapseA man was injured in the unexpected collapse of a building that was being demolished by a construction company in Harlem. Last Thursday  a large interior section of the three-story Mount Ararat Baptist Church located on 316 West 135th Street in Harlem unexpectedly collapsed as the building was undergoing what was supposed to be a planned and controlled demolition.

One of the construction workers suffered minor injury. A man on a motorcycle who was driving near the building at the time of the accident was injured after he was hit by debris. The man suffered shoulder injuries ans some cuts but his life is not endangered. According to the firefighter the motorist was lucky to be alive. If he would have driven there half a second earlier he would have been crushed to death.

Read more in the Amsterdam News

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Gotham residential construction siteIn June 2018 two construction workers were seriously injured in a mini crane accident in New York because of the negligence of their supervisors. These supervisors were indicted last week for their reckless behavior. They face second degree assault and reckless endangerment.

The accident occurred on June 25th at a Harlem construction site located on East 126th Street near Lexington Avenue. Workers hired by Western Waterproofing were installing a facade for a building made of stainless steel and giant glass panels. To help them install the panels, 41 year old Timothy Braico, a senior branch manager, rented a mini crane that was installed on the fourth floor of the building. None of the workers in the team had proper training to use the crane and no one knew how to proprely set it up. After the crane was installed without an approved DOB engineering plan specifying crane use and tethering, the site supervisor, 39 year old Terrence Edwards, ordered an untrained iron-worker to operate the crane.  The crane maximum load was 880 pounds. As workers were hoisting a 1500-pound glass panel onto the facade of the building, the crane toppled and crashed to the ground.  39 year old Christopher Jackson, was ejected in the air and fell 3-story to the ground. He suffered traumatic brain injury that affected his capacity to talk and walk.  Another worker, 37 year old Jorge Delgado was struck in the back and suffered severe spinal injury that affected his mobility.

In New York, construction sites using mini cranes have to follow specific procedures in order to legally use them. A permit application that includes detailed plans as well as the proof that the contractor hired a certified operator and certified rigging crew must be submitted to the DOB in order to use a mini crane.

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Dilber Kubic a contractor accused of manipulating the gas line that led to the fatal explosion of a building in the lower east side in March 2015 is back at it. The contractor who was arrested after the accident is now doing illegal construction work in Harlem. Kubic is due to appear in court on March 23rd for the 2nd Ave accident.

MULTIPLE VIOLATIONS OPENED AGAINST THE BUILDING

According to people living in the building on West 154St in Harlem, Kubic was doing demolition work in 3 one-bedroom units to convert them into 2 two-bedrom units. Kubic doesn’t have any permit for this job. A broker for the building told the NY Daily News that he stopped working for the building after the alleged  illegal work started. He also filed a complaint that is being investigated by the office of Manhattan District Attorney Cy Vance. Investigators were unable to enter the building on Thursday and posted a notice for the landlord to get back to them. Journalists from the NY Daily News were able to get in and talk to tenants. They said contractors gutted all the walls in the apartments making terrible noise. The Daily News was also contacted by Joe Yusef owner of Allstate Home Remodeling who told the Newspaper that he hired Kubic to work for him. The News also called the landlord who replied that he didn’t know which apartments the News journalist was talking about. The building conditions are scary and tenants are dealing with mold, roaches and crumbling infrastructure. There are 18 violations opened with the Department of Buildings including 2 for defective elevators. In the past the landlord paid a $10,000 fine for not submitting papers to renovate the exterior of the building. He has a history of non-compliance. Read more in the NY Daily News

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Hudson Yard had many construction accidents2 construction workers died and another one was seriously injured in New York last Thursday at 2 different locations.  The first fatal accident occurred around 9:15 in the morning. 43 year old Juan Chonillo, a veteran construction worker and a father of 5 was working on the 29th floor of the 1 Seaport Residences construction site when he lost his balance. He fatally fell on the top of the scaffold bridge installed above the sidewalk. Just before the accident Chonillo was raising a concrete framework to lay concrete on the floor. According to his cousin Angel Munoz, at the time of the accident Chonillo was trying “to free the crane from the building after a cable got stuck somehow”. Chonillo who was trained and certified. He was wearing his harness but it wasn’t attached to anything. Chonillo had 10 years experience in the New York construction industry including several construction sites in the Financial district. The day before the accident the DOB issued a partial  stop work order for the unsafe operation of a crane. It appeared that the crane had been installed without a permit. It is not exactly clear so far if the death of the worker is directly related to the unsafe installation of the crane. Prior to the accident the construction site was hit with 28 complaints including several failures  to safeguard workers and property and a failure to provide a concrete safety manager at the time of an inspection. Chonillo was employed by the contractor Pizzarotti IBC. The construction site of the luxury all-glass residential building is located at 161 Maiden Lane.

Later on during the same day, two other construction workers fell 36 feet from a bucket lift at a construction site located at 401 9th Ave. The buildiing is part of the Hudson Yards development. One of the workers died and the other one was seriously injured. He was rushed to the hospital. According to NBC New York, the two workers were wearing a safety harness but were not attached to the bucket. It is the second time that a worker fell to his death at this location. Last June, Roger Vail was surveying the 16th floor of the building when he stood on a wooden platform that gave way (see previous blog).  The site was temporarily shut down in June and then re-opened after a safety plan was submitted to the city. Read more in the NY Daily News