A Long Island worker suffered a head injury after a serious and appalling accident at a Searingtown construction site on Friday, May 8, 2020. According to Nassau County police, the unidentified man, who is 36 years of age, was working at 60 Shelter Rock Road when he fell into a 25-foot deep large foundation pit at 10:16am.
An emergency team of six officers and one sergeant responded to the scene and lowered a basket down into a pit to rescue the worker. The worker was raised up from the pit in the basket. He was taken to a local hospital where he was reported to be in stable condition.
We wish the worker a full and speedy recovery after this harrowing experience.
Unfortunately, incidents like this are far too common. Construction workers put themselves in danger in their line of work every day. Because of the nature of construction work – this often requires working from heights, handling heavy machinery, and being exposed to other dangers – these workers require full protection in order to safely perform their jobs. Sadly, this is all too often not the case in construction site accidents.
According to the latest Deadly Skyline report by the New York Committee for Occupational Safety and Health (NYCOSH), OSHA violations were found in 100% of inspected sites where workers have died, a clear indicator that site owners, contractors, and subcontractors are not doing enough to ensure that full safety measures are taken into consideration to reduce the number of injuries and deaths among their workforce. Construction sites are some of the deadliest places to work, as construction accident deaths make up 21% of all work-related fatalities in New York State in 2018. In New York City where there are more construction projects, that figure is even higher – 30%.
Falls are the deadliest types of occupational hazards on construction sites, making up 48% of construction fatalities in New York State and 64% in New York City. These sobering statistics highlight the need for greater legislative change, which include increasing fines and criminal persecutions among construction contractors that violate safety regulations. One such law – Carlos’ Law – would improve worker safety if passed.
In New York, workers are afforded certain legal protections if they are injured on the job. These include New York labor laws and the Industrial Code. For example, New York Labor Law 240(1) protects workers from falls that could have been prevented with proper equipment or devices. In the incident above, for instance, a pit on a site often requires some sort of perimeter protection. Depending on the nature of the work, any unguarded opening on a construction site can potentially trigger the Statute’s protections.
Block O’Toole & Murphy attorneys provide free legal consultations for those injured on construction sites and have recovered top results in some of the toughest construction accident cases in New York, including a $110 million verdict for a passerby seriously injured at a Brooklyn construction site. Other recoveries include:
- $15,000,000 settlement for the family of a construction worker who was killed on the job by a falling object
- $12,000,000 settlement for a union worker who suffered serious injuries after he fell 40 feet at a Manhattan construction site
- $11,500,000 settlement for a construction worker who was working at a high-res building when he became injured as a result of using defective equipment
- $11,000,000 settlement for a worker who suffered pelvic and spinal injuries after he fell through a hole at a construction site