In December 2016, a worker fell to his death in New York due to a scaffolding accident. Unfortunately, these accidents happen every year to many construction workers but could have been prevented. When he fell from the sixth floor, he wasn’t immediately pronounced dead but this happened at the hospital hours after. In another accident in New York occurring in November 2016, two construction workers died when a beam fell at an unsafe work site. The President of Building and Construction Trades Council Gary LaBarbera commented on the incident, “Incidents like today’s, which are preventable, happen all too often and underscore the need for the Mayor, the City Council and the Department of Buildings to work together to enact greater site safety regulations and mandatory safety training and apprenticeship programs.”
New York Labor Law Section 240
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), which is in charge of safety in the workplace in the U.S., estimated that 65% of construction employees work on scaffolds at some point. In terms of construction accidents, these tend to be some of the most serious. Section 240 of New York’s Labor Law is known as the “Scaffold Law” and offers protections to employees. It imposes absolute liability on contractors or site owners who neglect to follow safety regulations and fail to provide devices that will protect workers from falls.
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There are many regulations that employers must follow, especially in design and inspection. For instance, the design and construction of scaffolds must meet OSHA’s requirements and must be able to support the weight they claim. They must also be inspected competently for visible defects before they are being used. If they look defective or damaged, they should be removed from service to prevent injury.
In New York, construction accidents can become a complicated matter, which is why you may need an attorney on your side through the process. You may run into issues concerning liability, safety regulation compliance, and so much more. If you have been injured due to a scaffold injury, call us today. We are here to answer your questions and get started on your claim.