$3,000,000 Settlement for Worker Who Fell from Unsecured Ladder, Causing Neck & Lower Back Injuries
DATE OF SETTLEMENT
COURT AND COUNTY
AGE AND OCCUPATION OF PLAINTIFF
Plaintiff was 42 years old on the date of the accident and employed by Crana Electric, Inc.
FACTS AND ALLEGATIONS
Plaintiff, a union electrician, was caused to fall from an unsecured eight-foot A-frame fiberglass ladder while installing MC cable in the ceiling at a construction project located at the Empire State Building. Defendant Empire State Building, as owner, leased several floors of the building to Defendant LF USA a global consumer goods company that designs and provides consumer apparel, accessories and home décor brands. The leased encompassed 9 floors and was the largest leasing transaction in the Empire State Building’s 80 year history. LF USA contracted with Defendant Icon Interiors as the General Contractor to build out offices, show rooms and conference rooms to consolidate all their brands in one location. Plaintiff was employed by the electrical subcontractor hired by Defendant Icon Interiors.
Plaintiff alleged violations of the NY State Labor Law section 240(1). Labor Law section 240(1) imposes absolute liability on owners and contractors, or their agents, when their failure to protect workers employed on a construction site from the risks associated with working at an elevation proximately causes injury to a worker. In this matter it was claimed that the ladder Plaintiff was using was inadequately secured and that the ladder footings were not firm and level thereby causing Plaintiff to fall and sustain significant injuries in violation of section 240(1).
Plaintiff had immediate complaints of pain to his neck and lower back after falling and landing on the ladder. Plaintiff began a course of conservative treatment which included physical therapy, chiropractic treatment, and spinal injections all of which failed to provide relief. Plaintiff was referred for diagnostic tests and to see a spinal specialist to address his continuing and worsening complaints. The diagnostic tests illustrated that Plaintiff sustained a lumbar herniation at the L5-S1 segment requiring a decompressive lumbar laminectomy and partial discectomy at that level. Additionally, plaintiff sustained a cervical herniation at the C3-C4 segment requiring a fusion surgery at that level. Plaintiff was unable to return to work as an electrician after the accident and will never work in the construction field again. Additionally, as a result of these significant injuries plaintiff has been unable to engage in his activities of daily living including taking care of his children, upkeep of his home, and participating in social and recreational activities.
Plaintiff made claims for loss of earnings, past and future medical expenses, as well as past and future pain and suffering and loss of enjoyment of life.
The parties negotiated a $3,000,000 pretrial settlement.
This case was handled by Stephen J. Murphy, Esq. and Michael J. Hurwitz, Esq.