$10,875,000 Jury Verdict for Union Worker Who Suffered Internal Injuries
Our client, a 35-year-old member of the Laborers Local 731 Union, was working on the rooftop of a building in Brooklyn when he fell and was impaled on unguarded steel rebar. As a result of this terrible accident, he suffered debilitating internal injuries which required multiple surgeries.
Court and County
Our client was born in El Salvador and was a legalized US citizen at the time of this incident. Since coming to America, he worked multiple handyman and construction jobs in order to support both his mother as well as his son. He was 35 years old on the day of the accident, and a member of the Laborers Local 731 union.
Attorneys at Block O’Toole & Murphy who worked this case can still recall the emotional deposition our client gave as he recounted accruing major credit card debt and wiping out his life savings so that he could continue to support his mother and son in the months after his accident in which he was unable to work.
Description of Case
Our client was working on a Brooklyn construction site when he was informed he was needed on the roof of a building which he’d never worked on before. Concrete would be poured on the roof later that day, and a supervisor instructed that rebar needed to be placed before the concrete was poured.
When our client arrived, there were already some vertical rebar in place. These were sticking out about 3 feet and were not capped at this time. Our client’s job was to drill into the masonry wall of the roof to make room for more vertical rebar, while a co-worker followed behind and placed the bars into the holes.
After drilling all the holes, our client was gathering his tools when he noticed a co-worker having difficulty straightening out a piece of horizontal rebar which was being used as “matting” on the roof. Our client went to help him, but as he pulled on the rebar, he lost his footing and slipped backwards, landing on a piece of uncapped vertical rebar which impaled him.
One safety director previously employed by the Defendant stated that the safety plans supplied for new jobs neglected to instruct workers about the necessity to cap rebar as it is placed. Subsequent safety plans were amended to include this requirement.
Mr. Block and Mr. Donahue were successful in obtaining summary judgement on the issue of fault, resulting in a damages-only trial.
As a result of the impalement, our client suffered massive internal injuries which required multiple surgeries.
This matter was handled by Partners Jeffrey A. Block and S. Joseph Donahue.
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