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Worker Jonathan Lupinski Died in Elevator Shaft Fall

Sickeningly, another worker fell to his death last week at a Manhattan construction site.

On Friday August 18, 2017, 22-year-old Jonathan Wieslaw Lupinski of Yonkers was stripping the elevator shaft of a NoMad condominium building when he fell 20 feet down to the basement, as reported by New York Daily News.

The incident occurred at around 9:30am in the morning. After plummeting two stories down the elevator shaft, Lupinski suffered head trauma and was rushed to Bellevue Hospital in serious condition. He was later pronounced dead.

The building he was working on, 281 Fifth Avenue, is a 150-apartment luxury condominium tower designed by famed Uruguayan architect Rafael Viñoly and built by construction company Lend Lease. The project was anticipating completion in 2018.

However, since construction began, the site has been the subject of several injury complaints. Two workers hurt their arms while working and in July 2016, a pedestrian was hit in the head by a piece of wood that fell from the building.

The Department of Buildings is investigating this incident, as reported by dnainfo. Tragically, Lupinski's death marks the latest in a string of recent construction accidents, including another worker falling to his death at a Manhattan building and an electrician who died as a result of an elevator accident at a new condominium construction.

Lupinski, a member of Laborers' Local 6A, is survived by his parents, two sisters, and extended family.

The 22-year-old was remembered by his neighbors as a hardworking, helpful, and kind person.

"He was the best kid in the world," a neighbor told the New York Post. "He was always working, since he was 18... He was always saving. He said he was saving to buy a house."

Unfortunately, falls are the most frequent work hazard for construction laborers, accounting for 59% of construction-related deaths in New York City in 2015.

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) sets guidelines to prevent workers from becoming injured on the job, especially for high-risk occupational dangers such as falls. Requirements include but are not limited to:

  • Developing and implementing a fall protection program during the construction project
  • Supervising employees properl
  • Providing the right fall protection equipment whenever a fall hazard is present

If guidelines are not strictly followed, it can lead to multiple preventable deaths, as evidenced by New York's alarming work injury statistics in the construction industry.

Construction workers and their loved ones are protected by certain labor and personal injury laws. However, more can be done to protect workers from preventable injuries. The New York Committee for Occupational Safety & Health (NYCOSH) made 12 key recommendations last year including:

  • Requirement of OSHA 10 training for all New York workers in the construction industry
  • Holding corporations financially and legally responsible for worker deaths and increase repercussions for those who don't follow safety guidelines
  • Defending current laws that protect laborers and increase protection by passing the Elevator Safety Act

If you have any questions about labor laws in New York or if you or a loved one has been injured in a construction accident, please feel free to contact the Law Firm of Block O'Toole & Murphy for a free consultation. Simply call 212-736-5300 or fill out our contact form.

A number of our lawyers are heavily involved in the New York State Trial Lawyers Association Labor Law Committee. Additionally, all our attorneys are experienced in litigating accident cases, including falls on construction sites and injuries from elevator accidents. Notable results include:

To learn more about our results for workers in the construction industry, please visit our Construction Accident Verdicts and Settlements page. In 2016, Block O'Toole & Murphy attained 3 of the Top 5 Construction Settlements in New York State, surpassing every other law firm in construction accident results.

Speak with a qualified work injury lawyer today: 212-736-5300.