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Midtown Manhattan Crane Drops Heavy Air Conditioning Unit; Injuring Seven

The Crane Accident Lawyers at Block O'Toole & Murphy, LLP are following yet another scary New York City crane incident, which happened Sunday morning at 261 Madison Avenue, between East 38th and 39th Streets in Midtown Manhattan. Reportedly, a construction crane was lifting an industrial-sized air conditioning unit to the top of the 30 story building, when its cable snapped, causing the unit to plummet 28 stories, striking the façade of the building before crashing down to the street below. It left the street covered in glass, metal and dust and led to several road closures today.

Seven people were injured, including two construction workers. We are pleased to report that, according to recent reports, none of the injuries were serious. We will keep these injured victims in our thoughts and prayers, and we hope that the initial reports about the injuries being minor proves true. It is quite fortunate that this incident occurred on a Sunday morning when the area was relatively empty. Had it happened during busy a workday, the results certainly could have been tragic.

New Yorkers are becoming far too familiar with crane collapses and failures. When this type of heavy construction machinery fails, the results are often disastrous because the nature of their work involves hoisting extremely heavy objects high above the streets of the City. We hope and expect that the proper authorities, including OSHA and the Department of Buildings, fully investigate the causes of this crane collapse and hold the people in charge of the crane and construction site fully accountable for their failings.

As a law firm that represents injured construction workers, and lobbies to keep New York State construction safety laws strong, we are particularly concerned about this recent trend of crane accidents. Amazingly, pro-business and insurance interests continue to fight to weaken New York construction safety laws like Labor Law Section 240(1), also known as the "Scaffold Law", which is a statute that is specifically designed to prevent height-related accidents just like this one. As this accident demonstrates, these laws don't only protect construction workers, they can serve to protect other ordinary citizens who happen to be passing by construction sites as well. Do New Yorkers really want to imagine a City with even fewer protections in place against crane accidents? We pledge to continue doing our part in the fight to keep these laws on the books. If you are reading this and are concerned about crane safety, call your local State legislator and tell him or her that now is not the time to weaken construction safety laws in New York.

Block O'Toole & Murphy is a personal injury and construction accident law firm that is often consulted on the most serious cases because the firm has recovered over $850 Million for our clients through hard fought verdicts and settlements. Block O'Toole & Murphy can be reached for a free consultation at (212) 736-5300. The firm's website is at: