Tag Archives: building collapse

Increased construction injuries and deaths in New York City

New York – Construction accidents with injuries or deaths are on the rise according to statistics released by city officials. The Building Department says that there have been more reported deaths from construction accidents when comparing the current year of 2018 with reports from last year. Public safety experts blame the spike on the increased amount of building construction and renovations. Some have pointed out that the city safety inspectors haven’t been keeping up with the necessary inspections to ensure safety of workers and the public. Others believe that contractors and builders have taken advantage of the commonplace construction environment and have become lax about following safety guidelines. Workers sometimes complain about dangerous work conditions, including improper or lack of safety devices such as helmets, railings and harnesses. Even when equipment is available, workmen have noted negligent maintenance or lack of training provided to hardhats. They worry that profits make be a more important factor for employers than the safety of workers or the public. This situation can lead to a widespread hazardous condition and can easily contribute to a work injury or even wrongful death. Accidents include building collapse, falling debris, bone fractures and trip and fall accidents. See this article to understand more about the increased accidents.

Image for illustrative purposes only. Photo Credit: Pete Jelliffe [License]

Construction work accident in Queens leaves 6 injured workers

New York – A scaffolding collapse in the middle of a construction site in Long Island City, Queens caused mayhem this week. Six workers were injured during the construction accident and were rushed to the emergency room. Hospital officials confirmed that the accident victims suffered a back injury, possible broken bones and arm and leg injuries. Reports note that the workers were pouring concrete into wooden forms to create a floor when it collapsed. Concerned safety advocates explain that the owner and developer of the building may have been negligent in the management of the project. They note that the New York City’s buildings department placed an emergency stop order on the construction when they noticed several dangerous safety violations. It has been pointed out that the same work site has a history of multiple complaints filed with the Department of Buildings since the new owner took it over in 2015. More research will be needed to determine if, in fact, the developer had created a hazardous situation that placed the safety of his employees and the public at risk for injury. Employers are responsible to obtain worker’s compensation insurance in order to deal with these types of work accidents. However, this doesn’t absolve them of their duty to prevent accidents and avoid negligence. More details about this building collapse accident can be found here.

Photo for illustrative purposes only. Photo Credit: Phillip Pessar [License]

Multiple workers injured by construction accident in Manhattan

New York – Four demolition workmen suffered varying degrees of injuries during a work accident at the construction site where they were employed. Accounts from witnesses at the scene explain that the laborers were working on internal demolition in the building that had been undergoing extensive renovations. Heavy debris, possibly a section of a metal railing, came crashing down onto the workers, causing crush injuries. However, reports show that the men may have also suffered fall injuries after the construction debris knocked them down. Some reports noted that there was a partial building collapse that caused the accident. A large rescue force quickly arrived at the accident scene and extricated the four wounded victims, taking them to the emergency room for urgent treatment.

Investigations into the cause of the work accident are ongoing, with New York City building safety officials and OSHA investigators looking into the facts that led to the incident. Suspicions of unsafe work conditions have arisen due the history of the buildings department having shut down the very same worksite several times. Records show that the construction site had been deemed dangerous in those previous incidents but that no work injury had been reported prior to this. A statement from the owner of the building explained that there was, in fact, no building collapse and that a licensed construction site safety manager working there at the time of the accident. Find out more about this demolition accident and injured workers here.

Illustrative photo Credit: Luigi Rosa [License]

Harlem, New York gas explosion collapses two buildings

New York – A massive explosion destroyed two buildings last week in the Harlem section of Manhattan. The accident killed eight people and left more than sixty injured victims in its wake, according to police. The cause of the explosion is under investigation but current evidence points towards a gas leak as the origin of the sudden blast. Current inspections by Con Edison, the Fire Department of New York and building department are focusing on possible sources of a gas leak and to determine if proper safety measures were taken to protect the public from danger. Most importantly, safety analysts are concerned about the possibility of repeat explosions from similar hazardous conditions. This explosion has raised concerns regarding the old age and safety of many of New York City’s gas pipes. Many of the pipes and equipment are well more than 100 years old and may have corroded or are otherwise leaking according to experts. Some have asserted that negligent maintenance is abound and will be responsible for many more injuries and deaths if something is not done soon to rectify the dangerous situation. They say that gas meters, connectors and main pipes were installed in the late 1800’s and require close watch, regular maintenance or prompt replacement. Records show that some sections of the gas main servicing the collapsed buildings were placed in 1887. Read more about this gas explosion and injury victim identification here.

Photo by Adnan Islam (Flickr: IMG_6862) [CC-BY-2.0], via Wikimedia Commons

Partial building collapse injures children in Brooklyn

New York – Two pedestrians were injured when a building’s outer wall collapsed on them yesterday. The accident occurred when heavy winds made the brick wall buckle and fall onto the sidewalk below. The young victims were left with lacerations and other unspecified wounds. They were rescued for emergency teams from the police and fire departments and taken to the hospital for treatment. The New York City buildings department explained that the owner of the building did not properly maintain the store front and therefore issued a ticket to the owner. Building safety falls under the jurisdiction of that department but it was unclear if the wall had been inspected by them prior to it falling onto the children. Negligent maintenance or neglect of public safety can easily lead to injuries or death, as can be seen from other recent building collapse cases. Besides improper maintenance, a building collapse can occur during construction, as occurred in this case in Canarsie, Brooklyn.

Public safety activists in New York insist that weak building structures can be found throughout the area and this needs to be addressed. They say that the owners, mayor’s office, building department and fire department each have a responsibility to inspect and condemn any building or facade that presents a dangerous situation for innocent bystanders. More importantly, these hazards should be fixed before another accident with injuries occurs from another building or wall collapse. You can read about yet another construction accident that killed a worker here. If you or someone you know was injured due to someone’s negligence, you have the right to speak to an injury lawyer for advice.

Photo by Sanseiya (Own work) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons