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Block O'Toole & Murphy's Blog

Construction Worker Luis Almonte Killed in Wall Collapse at Sunset Park

Tragedy struck Wednesday, September 12th when a retaining wall above a trench at a construction site collapsed, leaving one worker trapped under the debris. Despite extensive rescue efforts, the search had to be postponed due to rain before they were able to locate the worker, and the FDNY is now characterizing the operation as a recovery, rather than a rescue.

This accident occurred near 39th St. and Seventh Ave. in Sunset Park, Brooklyn as workers in a trench "were apparently clearing a foundation below," according to ABC7NY. Six workers were initially caught in the collapse and five were able to escape, but Luis Almonte, a 47-year-old immigrant from the Dominican Republic, is still buried somewhere in the rubble. 

Fred Nivrose, from Ditmas Park, Killed in Car Crash with Tractor Trailer

Fred Nivrose of Ditmas Park, Brooklyn tragically lost his life after his car was struck by a tractor trailer on the Major Deegan Expressway on Monday, September 10, 2018.

Nivrose, 46, was driving his car northbound in rainy conditions when he lost control of his Toyota Camry. The car spun out and hit the barrier. It was about 5 a.m. at the time, and Nivrose's car was completely turned around and facing backwards against traffic.

NYC Construction Accidents up 17%, Fatalities Doubled in 2018

By December 1st of 2018, New York City construction workers and supervisors will be required to have logged an additional 40 and 62 hours of safety training respectively to comply with the recently passed bill known as Local Law 196. Employers need to provide this training now more than ever, as new data reveals that NYC construction accidents are up 17% and have caused 8 fatalities in the first 7 months of 2018, double the amount of deaths over the same time frame in 2017.

These staggering injury and fatality numbers come amidst an unprecedented surge in construction projects around the city, with the Department of Buildings (DOB) issuing an all-time high 168,243 construction permits in 2017, according to the New York Post. A record 45,242 construction workers were employed to keep up with this construction boon, according to data from the Department of Labor.

Yu Qing Chen Tragically Hit and Killed by MTA Bus in Brooklyn

A Brooklyn pedestrian tragically passed away after she was hit by an MTA bus in Bensonhurst, Brooklyn. At approximately 8pm on Wednesday, September 5, 2018, Yu Qing Chen was crossing the street within a marked crosswalk when a B6 bus traveling west on Stillwell Avenue made a right turn and struck her.

The 81-year-old woman was taken to Maimonides Hospital in critical condition and was later pronounced dead, according to NYPD.

Carlos Gabrielli Killed in Chainsaw Accident on Construction Site

Tragedy occurred at a Staten Island construction site last Friday, August 10, 2018.

50-year-old Carlos Gabrielli from Linden, New Jersey and other crew members were working to install sewers at a construction site in Westerleigh, Staten Island.

At around 11:26am, Gabrielli was using a chainsaw to cut a pipe when he slipped and cut his hand and throat against the saw. According to the NYPD, he suffered a deep laceration to his throat, resulting in severe blood loss.

Australian Tourist, Madison Jane Lyden, Hit & Killed by Garbage Truck

23-year-old Madison Jane Lyden from Victoria, Australia was visiting New York City with her best friends for what should have been "the trip of the lifetime," according to her parents. Instead, it ended in tragedy and heartbreak.

On Friday, August 10, 2018, Lyden rented a bike to tour Central Park and the Upper West Side with her friend. While riding on the northbound bicycle lane in Central Park West between 66th and 67th Streets, she swerved to avoid an Uber that cut her off in the bike lane and was hit by a private garbage truck. The incident occurred at around 5:10pm.

12 Most Dangerous Intersections in NYC for Pedestrians & Cyclists

Launched by the de Blasio administration in 2014, the Vision Zero program began a city-wide effort to completely eliminate traffic fatalities and injuries. While progress is being made (last year saw the fewest traffic fatalities in New York City on record), traffic accidents and fatalities are still a reality of life for pedestrians, cyclists and drivers across the five boroughs.

In order to raise public awareness of this ongoing problem and where we are most likely to be affected by it, a new report from Localize.city analyzed citywide data to reveal the 12 neighborhoods and intersections where pedestrians or cyclists are most likely to be injured or killed in a traffic accident.

Bushwick Cyclist Injured in Garbage Truck Hit-and-Run

A cyclist in Bushwick, Brooklyn was struck in a hit-and-run accident by a private garbage truck on Wednesday night, August 1, 2018.

The woman, 25, was in the bike lane on Evergreen Avenue near Grove Street in Bushwick when the accident occurred. The garbage truck struck her but continued to drive and was later found by police at its sanitation garage in East Williamsburg, where it had been returned. Police are investigating whether the driver was aware that he had struck the woman or not.

Commercial Waste Disposal in NYC is Dangerous and Needs to Change

A light was recently shone on the shadowy world of commercial garbage collection in New York City by Errol Louis, respected New York Daily News columnist and host of NY1's "Inside City Hall." When thinking of the inhuman conditions that commercial sanitation workers face and the danger this presents to the public, Louis writes, the person to remember is Mouctar Diallo.

Angel Ezpinoza Killed by Falling Scaffolding in Morningside Heights

Staten Island construction worker Angel Ezpinoza was tragically killed on Thursday afternoon, June 12th when a piece of scaffolding fell and struck him in the head. Ezpinoza, 28, suffered severe head trauma and was rushed to Mount Sinai St. Luke's hospital, where he was pronounced dead.