New York Attorneys for OSHA Violations

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) exists to protect workers from employers, contractors and building owners looking to cut corners in order to save on time and cost. These regulations make potentially dangerous construction work safe, and when these regulations are disregarded, employees and pedestrians become vulnerable to construction accidents and catastrophic personal injury.

If you or a loved one was injured or killed because of another party's failure to comply with OSHA standards, you may be entitled to compensation. Given the scope and complexity of these regulations, it pays to have a personal injury lawyer by your side who is experienced in navigating the murky question of where exactly fault lies after a work accident resulting in catastrophic injury.

Block O'Toole & Murphy has won over $1 billion dollars in successful outcomes for our clients in a variety of complex personal injury cases. A few of our most notable work accident results include:

  • $12,000,000 settlement for a crane worker who suffered severe damage to his internal organs and required a left total femur replacement after a 40-foot fall
  • $10,875,000 settlement for a union laborer who fell and was impaled on unguarded steel rebar at a construction project in Brooklyn
  • $7,400,000 settlement for a sheet metal worker who fell 3 feet while working on an HVAC unit, ultimately requiring lumbar surgery
  • $7,300,000 settlement for a laborer who had to have his right arm amputated during an attempted steel demolition in Brooklyn
  • $7,000,000 settlement after a worker was struck in the face by a falling object, resulting in a permanent tremor in his left hand that destroyed his ability to work
  • $6,400,000 settlement for an ironworker in the Bronx who fell 30 feet after not being provided any appropriate fall protection
  • $6,250,000 settlement for a framer who fell 9 feet, fracturing his cervical spine at the C4/5 level and resulting in complete quadriplegia
  • $6,000,000 settlement for a union waterproofer who fell 10 feet through a gap in the scaffold that did not have any foot planks in place
  • And many more successful results and cases

Block O'Toole & Murphy was featured on the cover of the 2018 New York City Best Lawyers magazine in large part due to our successful results on work accident cases. Receive a free legal consultation by calling us at 212-736-5300 or contact us online.

Your Rights Are Protected Under The OSH Act of 1970

Your right to a safe workplace is guaranteed under the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970. When a violation is found, a citation is issued to inform the employer of the violation, set a time period in which it must be corrected, and propose a monetary fine. This violation should be addressed as soon as possible to minimize worker exposure to whatever hazardous condition triggered the citation.

When a citation is received, it must be posted in a place where employees can easily see it, either for three working days or until the violation is corrected, whichever takes longer. Even if an employer intends to contest the citation, as is their right, they must still clearly post it. Failure to do so is itself a violation.

Fines included on a citation must be paid within 15 working days. Any employers reluctant to put forth the effort to provide and maintain a safe working environment should remember that "OSHA has a policy of reducing penalties for small employers and those acting in good faith."

Most Common Types of OSHA Citations

OSHA released a report showing the 10 most frequently cited standards following inspections of worksites by federal OSHA from Oct. 2016 - Sept. 2017:

  1. Fall protection, construction
  2. Hazard communication standard, general industry
  3. Scaffolding, general requirements, construction
  4. Respiratory protection, general industry
  5. Control of hazardous energy (lockout/tagout), general industry
  6. Ladders, construction
  7. Power industrial trucks, general industry
  8. Machinery and machine guarding general requirements
  9. Fall Protection - Training Requirements
  10. Electrical, wiring method, components and equipment, general industry

Falls are far and away the most common cause of worker death and injury on work sites. Generally, OSHA requires fall protection on construction sites for anything over six feet, though requirements vary based on the exact job being performed. Some common fall protection equipment includes guard rails, toe boards, safety harnesses, safety nets, stair railings and hand rails.

A particularly dangerous subset of falling injuries are ladder falls. A major cause of these types of accidents is the ladder being placed on uneven ground, which is often the reality of working on a construction site. To illustrate why this poses such a danger, if you have a "28-foot extension ladder [that] is 1 inch off at the base, the top of the ladder will be 19 inches off of center," placing anybody at the top of it in serious risk of a tip-over.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics once determined that "25% of workers injured in scaffold accidents had received no scaffold safety training." Considering how prevalent scaffolding is to construction work, training in this area needs to be a high priority for employers. The most common causes of scaffolding injuries are: falls, scaffold collapse, struck by falling object and electrocution.

Powered Industrial Trucks, also known as forklifts, are used in all types of industries and workplaces, primarily to transport materials. They are powerful machines and capable of causing serious injuries if not used properly; there were 43 reports of fatalities caused by forklifts in 2016 alone, according to OSHA reports. The most common types of fatal forklift accidents are:

  • Vehicle tip over
  • Being crushed in between forklift and other surface
  • Being crushed between two vehicles
  • Struck or run over by the forklift

So many forklift accidents could be avoided with proper training and adherence to proper safety protocol - don't let your employer make you just another statistic.

Personal Injury Law Firm in New York City

If you suffered a wrongful or negligence-related injury, the experienced personal injury lawyers at Block O'Toole & Murphy are here to help. For a FREE case evaluation, contact us online or call us at 212-736-5300.

Serving the Bronx, Queens, Brooklyn, Manhattan, Long Island and all New York State.