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Roof Falls: Can These Workplace Accidents Be Prevented?

The lawyers at Block O'Toole & Murphy have a long history of helping workers injured in construction falls. More specifically, they have been helping victims of roof falls and their families overcome significant obstacles after a serious work accident for decades.

Falls from a roof occur too frequently and pose some of the greatest risks of death and serious injury to workers. Block O'Toole & Murphy again supports the campaign of the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) to reduce construction falls. Today, we focus on roof falls and how to reduce the number of roof falls.

As experienced construction accident lawyers, we often see falls from a roof that could have been prevented. Certain simple precautions can really change lives. How can falls from roofs be prevented? OSHA offers some powerful suggestions in the below link. They include:

· Wear a harness and always stay connected

· Make sure your harness fits

· Use guardrails or lifelines

· Inspect all fall protection equipment before use

· Guard or cover all holes, openings and skylights.

If there is a cooperative effort between developers, general contractors, employers and workers to adhere to the above principles, the number of roof falls will be reduced dramatically. We see roof falls when work is being done after a lifeline is disconnected or when workers are working in or walking near an area where there are unprotected openings or skylights.

Also, roof falls tend to occur when the wrong equipment or even defective equipment is used during the work. Why does this continue to occur? Too often it is about a rush to complete work, inappropriate equipment being used or a lack of training from the top down.

OSHA makes some common sense suggestions to combat these problems. They include an emphasis on planning, providing and training. More specifically, they urge everyone at a site to plan ahead to get a job done in a safe manner without any falls. This requires communication between different trades and co-workers alike. They also recommend that the right equipment is provided and that workers are required to use it. Lastly, they point out that the proper safety training is an absolute must. They all seem like easy fixes. Yet, these horrible accidents continue to occur. Hopefully, OSHA's education of the public makes a difference. Worker safety is not a Third World problem or even a small town USA problem. It is a concern of New Yorkers everywhere, from midtown Manhattan to Chemung County.

The attorneys at Block O'Toole & Murphy have represented workers that have been killed or seriously injured in roof falls. We know how a roof fall can devastate an individual or even an entire family and we have been proudly fighting on behalf of injured workers for decades. The lawyers at the firm have amassed more than $750,000,000 in verdicts and settlements for their injured clients.

You can learn more about Block O'Toole & Murphy and their commitment to excellence by reviewing the firm website at For a free consultation, you may call them at 212.736.5300.


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