Construction projects in New York City have long been the cause of injuries and deaths for those working in the industry. Consider that almost 30 workers lost their lives building the Brooklyn Bridge, scores more perished erecting the original World Trade Centers and five died during the construction of the Empire State Building.
Those are just the deaths from several of the most high profile construction projects in NYC. Each day is fraught with danger and hazards for the men and women who make a living in the building trades in the five boroughs.
The Department of Buildings, which ensures job site safety, demonstrated that there were almost 400 injuries in 2015. This number was over twice as high as the figures from only sever years prior, indicating that the risk continues to climb.
Industry experts point out that a great deal of the deaths and injuries on construction sites are completely preventable. Most deaths and life-threatening injuries happen when workers fall. Despite the fact that NYC has some of the most stringent safety rules in the United States, some workers and contractors openly flout the very regulations that are designed to keep construction workers safe.
One reason for this is lax enforcement. Violators frequently are not identified until a death or serious injury has already occurred. Some of the biggest offenders are the smallest job sites. These attract less scrutiny from safety officials and often rack up multiple incidents of injuries due to safety violations. One of the main reasons for this is to cut corners and keep costs low.
Statistics from the Occupational Safety and Health Administration indicate that nearly 80 percent of the construction accidents in New York can be attributed to companies employing nonunion workers. But even companies staffed by union members can have safety lapses that lead to workers' injuries and deaths.
If you were injured on a construction site, you may want to explore your legal options to seek compensation for your injuries.
Source: Crain's New York Business, "Unsafe at any height: It's more dangerous than it has been in years to work in construction," Joe Anuta, accessed May 06, 2016