Articles Posted in Construction Accidents

Published on:

When you get hurt working a construction job in New York, the law provides certain opportunities for compensation in various situations. These situations can include, among others, falls or blows from falling objects. To achieve a successful outcome, you’ll need more than just evidence of your fall or the falling object. You’ll need proof that the work you were doing was of a type that is covered by the Labor Law statutes. Sometimes, the classification of the work you were doing can make all the difference between success and failure. To make sure you are providing the court the proof you need to get the compensation you deserve, retain a skilled New York construction injury attorney to handle your case.

An example of a lawsuit that turned upon this “type of work” issue was the case of T.M.’s accident. T.M. was a worker performing activities outside a hospital in the Bronx. In the summer, the hospital was cooled by a chiller unit, which the facility rented. That chiller sat atop a trailer situated on 173rd Street, utilizing hoses that sat on some scaffolding that was also situated on 173rd Street.

In early December 2012, T.M. and some co-workers were tasked with disconnecting the rented chiller. A co-worker experienced problems getting some wood free from underneath the trailer. As the men worked, a chain holding the chiller snapped and the eight-ton chiller slid off the trailer and onto T.M. The impact crushed and killed the worker.

Published on:

New York City is currently in the midst of a construction boom. In many ways, this is very good news. New construction can mean new housing options, new employment options and new opportunities of various types. For construction workers, it should mean a wealth of new job prospects and a steady stream of work. Unfortunately, it has also meant something else: a substantial uptick in the number of construction workers injured and killed on the job. It shouldn’t have to be this way, but that is the reality. Fortunately for workers and their families, New York law has an avenue for recovering an award of damages when a worker is hurt or killed due to inadequate safety on the job. If you’ve been hurt in an accident while working a New York City construction job, be sure you have the legal representation you need from a skilled New York injury attorney to get the compensation you deserve.

At the beginning of September, the New York Post published an article entitled “Construction accidents soar amid NYC building boom.” That article shared some depressing statistics. During the first seven months of 2018, twice as many construction workers died on the job in New York City as died in the first seven months of 2017. A total of nearly 500 men and women were injured in more than 450 construction accidents occurring from January to July 2018. These injury numbers represented a 17% uptick from the number of construction accident injuries occurring in the city from January to July 2017. (The Post obtained this information from the city’s Buildings Department.)

The federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration recognizes what’s called the “fatal four,” which are the four leading causes of fatal construction accidents. These are falls, being struck by an object, electrocution and “caught in-betweens,” which are accidents where a worker is pinned or trapped and becomes caught, crushed or compressed.

Published on:

If you’ve been hurt while working at a construction job, you may be entitled to substantial compensation. The group of people or entities whom you can properly sue for that compensation may depend on the specific facts of your case. While the law allows you to seek compensation from the owner of the property and the general contractor on the job, the law may also allow you to pursue others if you can prove that the other person or entity legally qualified as an “agent” of the owner or the contractor. Talk to a knowledgeable New York construction accident attorney to learn more about your rights and your options.

An example of this issue of an “agent” was the New York City case of F.S. F.S.’ construction injury unfortunately occurred as far too many do; he fell from a scaffold. F.S. was working on a job at what was to be a mixed-use hotel and condo building. The building was owned by multiple companies. When you are injured at your construction job, especially if it is a larger job, the chances are high that there are numerous entities involved. Giving yourself the best chance of getting a full and fair recovery, then, means identifying all of the entities that are potentially liable to you and including them in your lawsuit. It also means identifying the ones that are not liable under the law and making sure that you don’t include them in your legal action.

At F.S.’ worksite, one firm served as the construction manager, and that company hired a different entity to serve as the safety consultant on the project. The safety consultant was one of the entities that the worker named in his Scaffold Law action. The safety consultant tried to get the court to dismiss it from the case, but it was not successful. The law allows injured construction workers to go after three groups of people under the Labor Law. One is the owners of the site. Another is the general contractor. A third is any entity that is an “agent” of either of the first two.

Published on:

Many people might think that the laws that potentially provide for compensation for construction site injuries only apply to people employed as construction workers. These laws, however, can apply to an array of different individuals. Many of them are construction workers, but not all are. If you have been injured at a construction site, even if you’re not a construction worker, it is worth your while to explore your options. Talk to a knowledgeable New York construction injury attorney to learn more about your potential case.

An example of this was the case of D., who was the owner of property on Long Island that included a single-family home. One June day in 2014, D. was at the property to inspect the work being performed by the construction firm he had retained to do some excavation work on the property (that was necessary prior to adding a room onto the home). D., while walking around the property, slipped and fell, suffering significant injuries.

D. sued the excavation company. His lawsuit alleged that his slip-and-fall was the result of oil that had leaked from a faulty hydraulic line of a backhoe that the excavating company had brought on the property.

Published on:

There are many ways that construction sites can be unsafe. Many times, when one thinks about construction site safety, one might think about safe scaffolding, proper fall protection, appropriate eyewear and head covering, or machinery and equipment that has been properly kept up and maintained. Sometimes, though, a workplace can be made unsafe simply by a failure to pick up debris and small supplies. When that happens, and you are injured as a result, you may have just as strong a case as if you fell from a defective scaffold. To learn more about your ability to recover compensation, talk to a knowledgeable New York construction accident attorney right away.

A case from the Bronx provides an example of how this can work. Derek was working at a job that required him to install sheetrock in a stairwell. While working, Derek tripped over an extension cord and fell down the stairs. He suffered substantial injuries and sued.

The injured worker advanced his case using a particular statute, Section 240(1), which is sometimes called the “Scaffold Law.” This law, however, lets injured workers sue in a variety of situations, beyond just circumstances that involve scaffolds. Generally, if you are a worker required to work on an elevated surface that is your only means of access to your work space, and you suffer injuries in a fall, you have the potential to pursue a lawsuit under this statute.

Published on:

In New York, in order to obtain compensation in a lawsuit filed under the Scaffold Law, your injury must have been gravity-related. Fortunately for injured workers, New York courts over the years have established a relatively broad definition of gravity-related. An object does not necessarily have to have fallen down or have swung upward in order for an accident to be gravity-related. The Court of Appeals has made it clear that, just because a worker and the object that injured him were on the same level, that does not automatically mean that the accident was not gravity-related. There are many different ways to succeed in a Scaffold Law case. To learn more about your options, talk to a knowledgeable New York construction accident attorney.

An example of a viable case that lacked a substantial elevation differential was the injury suffered by a worker named Jeff. Jeff was part of a crew hoisting a 1,000-pound steel beam. Specifically, Jeff was responsible for supervising the crew that was doing the actual hoisting, which was controlled by a mechanical switch. Jeff was reviewing blueprints when a crew member hit the hoist button prematurely, which sent the beam swinging toward Jeff. It hit him and resulted in Jeff suffering a torn biceps tendon.

The injured worker sued to recover compensation for the harm he suffered in the accident. His case asserted that he was entitled to compensation because the defendants violated Section 240(1) of the Labor Law. That statute, sometimes known as the “Scaffold Law,” aims to protect construction workers from harm resulting from elevation-related risks of harm.

Published on:

If you suffered an accident while working at your construction job, you may have many questions. Can I seek compensation for my harm? If I can, whom should I sue for damages? How long do I have to take action? These are all useful questions, and the answers to them can help choose a legal option that’s right for you. To find out the answers to these and more questions about your case, consult a skilled New York construction injury attorney.

An accident case from Broome County provides an example of a worker’s successful litigation. Daniel was an employee of a masonry subcontractor when he suffered his injuries. He was setting up a scaffold as part of a college dormitory renovation project when a truck tire rim fell from the dorm’s roof and hit Daniel in the head. The roofing subcontractor had placed the rim on the roof, supported by a safety warning barrier that notified rooftop workers they were near the edge of the roof.

The roof was several stories up, and the rim weighed 25-30 pounds, so the impact with Daniel’s head was substantial. Daniel filed a lawsuit alleging that the general contractor and the roofing subcontractor were liable for his injuries. He had two bases for his claim for compensation. One was Section 240(1) of the Labor Law, which allows injured workers to recover damages as a result of a “elevation-related risk” that caused the worker’s injuries. The other was Section 241(6), which allows workers to pursue compensation if a violation of the Industrial Code (which is a set of workplace safety rules established by the State of New York) took place and led to the accident.

Published on:

Construction workers in New York have to work with a wide array of devices, ranging from simple ladders to heavy machinery. The law requires that you receive equipment that is in a safe working condition. If that isn’t the case, and you get hurt as a result, you may be entitled to compensation. To discover more about your options regarding your construction injury, get in touch with a knowledgeable New York construction accident attorney about your situation.

One example of this type of case was the lawsuit pursued by a construction worker named Wanderlei. In 2015, Wanderlei was working a project repainting a bridge that spanned the Hudson River south of Albany. The project called for sandblasting the old paint from the bridge in advance of repainting it. Wanderlei’s job consisted of vacuuming up the steel “shot” or “grit” that was used in the sandblasting process.

On his second day on the job, Wanderlei was hurt. The hose he was using to vacuum detached from a larger hose. This disconnection allegedly jerked the man forward, causing him to step on some of the grit beneath him. He then slipped and hit his head on a bridge appurtenance.

Published on:

In your construction accident case, sometimes it may be the seemingly smallest or most insignificant things that can make big differences in the outcome of your case. That can be especially true when it comes to the analysis of your injury. Sometimes, the difference between being involved in an activity covered by the Scaffold Law and performing an act that is not covered can be very slight distinctions. To make sure that you have the information and evidence you need to obtain compensation for your construction accident injury, retain an experienced New York construction injury attorney to represent you.

One example of the importance of “sweating the small stuff” was the case of Miguel, a welding assistant. Miguel’s job was to create and install a waste disposal container and install it on a property in Brooklyn. He and his co-workers had already moved the container from a flatbed truck to a dolly and were preparing to roll it when the container fell off the dolly and landed on Miguel’s ankle, causing him significant injuries.

The worker launched a lawsuit to recover compensation for his damages under New York’s Labor Law. Specifically, Miguel argued that the accident demonstrated a violation of Section 240(1). The property owner sought to have the judge throw out the worker’s case, asserting that the activities that Miguel was completing were not covered under the Section 240(1) statute, The owner argued that Miguel was just engaged in the work of delivery and installation and that these tasks are not among those listed in the law. The owner’s argument compared Miguel’s work to that of someone doing “cosmetic maintenance or decorative modification.”

Published on:

Unfortunately, construction accidents in New York happen much more often than they should. Statistics have shown that, in recent years, construction deaths have again spiked. Safety at construction sites should be everyone’s top priority. When proper safety protocols aren’t followed, and a worker gets hurt, the law here in New York may give him or her the opportunity to recover compensation for the harm suffered. To learn more about your rights and options if you’ve been injured at your construction job, you should contact an experienced New York construction injury attorney.

A tragic example of such an accident, reported by the New York Daily News, took place recently in Queens. The worker, Edgar, was an immigrant from Ecuador and working on a luxury high-rise construction project when he suffered his fatal accident. Edgar, who was an employee of a window company, was part of a team using a forklift vehicle to transport a stack of windows to a garage for storage. Edgar was standing on the rear portion of a forklift driven by a co-worker when a window fell on him. The impact crushed Edgar’s head, and he died.

According to the Daily News report, Edgar was often troubled by the lack of attention to safety at the site. “He used to say it was very dangerous to work there… He was afraid of dying. He always complained about it,” the victim’s brother-in-law told the news source. A “stop work” order had been issued for the site, but those orders don’t apply to the moving and storage of materials, which was the task Edgar was doing when he died.

Contact Information