Details are still emerging as we report that four construction workers were injured today in midtown Manhattan when they fell approximately 2 stories during demolition work at a construction site. This serious construction accident continues an alarming trend of recent, harrowing construction site accidents and injuries in New York City.
The unidentified workers were working at 331 Madison Avenue near the intersection of 43rd St. on Manhattan’s east side. The workers were doing their job near an open stairway on the mezzanine level of the building, an area that is being completely renovated. The workers fell 2 stories. Apparently, a chandelier and a heavy marble banister also collapsed and may have struck them. The investigation into what exactly happened and why it occurred is ongoing. Thus far, it appears that the fall was caused by the demolition work.
We will continue to follow this tragic accident but in the meantime our thoughts and prayers go out to the injured workers, who were rushed to Bellevue Hospital Center by emergency personnel. Their conditions are reportedly guarded and very serious but not life threatening.
All work was stopped at the site and the building was evaluated for any structural flaws. The building apparently was deemed to be structurally sound. The interior demolition work was being done by Waldorf Demolition under the supervision of the well-regarded general contracting company Tishman Construction.
Demolition work is essentially the dismantling of an entire building or structure or part of a building or structure. It is well settled that demolition involves work that poses very serious risks. There are specific tools and safety devices that a demolition worker will need to safely perform the work. As a result of the risks associated with demolition, each step of the job must be carefully planned. This generally happens through the coordinated efforts the demolition crew and the general contractor. Safety must be the paramount concern when devising a plan. Some of the dangers associated with demolition work in construction include a lack of structural stability, excessive loading on floors and against walls, unsafe and unprotected openings in floors and falling items and debris that were not properly secured.
It is the job of the general contractor, the demolition team and the owner or developer at a job site to make sure that demolition work is done safely. Failure to adhere to commonly accepted safety principles can result in serious injury and/or death. If you or someone you know has been involved in a demolition accident at a construction site it is imperative that you have the advice of an experienced attorney. Block O’Toole & Murphy is a law firm that it committed to working for injured workers and their families. We have a track record of success in helping injured construction workers, including more than $850 million in verdicts and settlements for our clients. You may learn more about the firm by reviewing our website at www.blockotoole.com. You may also contact us for a free consultation by calling 212-736-5300.