If it seems like you’re always hearing about another worker injured or killed in a construction accident in New York, it’s because you probably are. In recent weeks, two construction workers were killed in two separate accidents, and the trend is increasing. New York City’s Department of Buildings recently reported that injuries on construction sites rose 34% in the fiscal year 2015, which ended on June 30, 2015.
In the fiscal year 2014, 211 people received injuries on construction sites, but this number rose to 283 in 2015. This is the highest number in recent years, compared to 187 injuries recorded in both 2012 and 2013, and 206 in 2010. Fatalities also rose steeply in the fiscal year 2015 (which would not include the most recent deaths on construction sites). 11 people died in 2015, compared to only six in 2014, five in 2013, seven in 2012, and four each year in 2010 and 2011.
Some officials have attributed the spike in injuries to the construction boom, speculating that a greater number of worksites means that more injuries will occur. However, one city councilman observed that, in an effort to get projects built while demand is high, some contractors and building managers may be cutting corners in regards to necessary safety precautions, putting their workers at risk. Already, families of the victim of one recent accident have secured an attorney and filed suit for the wrongful death of their loved one resulting from substandard safety conditions.
Some of the most recent accidents have had similar qualities. This means that building managers had noticed that certain conditions were dangerous, but nevertheless did not learn from recent tragedies and take safety measures to prevent similar accidents on their own worksites. City officials have begun considering different ways to penalize contractors who do not take their employees’ well-being seriously. One idea has been to refuse to give building permits to companies that have received multiple citations for safety violations without showing some effort to make their sites safer.
If you’ve been the victim of injuries due to working on an unsafe construction site, contact experienced Kingston attorneys at Basch & Keegan for a consultation on your possible construction accident lawsuit, at (845) 251-4545.