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Do I have a Lawsuit for my New York Construction Site Accident

March 3, 2017
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Our New York construction accident lawyers have extensive experience in representing construction workers who have sustained personal injuries in worksite accidents. One of the most frequent questions our construction accident attorneys hear is do I have a case. While most construction workers are familiar with New York’s Ladder or Scaffold Law, which is known as Labor Law 240. This law generally imposes liability for falls from unsafe scaffolds or ladders, but there are a number of situations in which a construction worker who is injured on the job can sue for damages.

One of the most comprehensive New York Laws that protect construction workers and allows New York construction workers to sue for injuries is New York’s Labor Law 241(6), which allows a construction worker to sue for pain and suffering whenever there is a violation of a specific Industrial Code regulation. The New York Industrial Code covers a wide variety of situations in which a construction worker can suffer an on the job injury.

A brief summary of the regulations is as follows. 12 NYCRR 23-1.16 outlines the requirements for safety belts, tail lines, and lifelines. and a construction worker has the right to sue where safety belts or life lines, are necessary and are not provided or were provided and were defective, such as where they broke or failed to protect the construction worker. Another common scenario is an injury where debris or other materials fall onto a construction worker and cause personal injuries. For example, 12 NYCRR 23-1.7(a)-(h). requires that suitable overhead protection to be provided to persons normally exposed to falling material in areas they are required to work or pass and this protection extends to persons who are lawfully frequently an area exposed to falling objects.

12 NYCRR section 23-1.7(a)(1)-(2) applies to areas where a construction worker is injured while working in an area where he was normally exposed to falling material. 12 NYCRR 23-1.7(a) applies where the worker is injured while was working in an area exposed to falling material, for example where demolition of the roof and ceiling was being performed from above the worker and the demolition debris is thrown down or dropped, and the debris hits the worker. Another regulation under which injured construction workers can sue is 12 NYCRR 23-3.3(b)(3) which requires that walls or chimneys or other parts of a building or structure not be left in an unguarded state such that they may fall, collapse, or be weakened by wind pressure or vibrations. Likewise, 12 NYCRR section 23-1.7(b) pertains to falling hazards when workers are required to work near a hazardous opening and close to an edge. 12 NYCRR section 23-1.7(b)(2) protects workers who were performing bridge or highway overpass construction and therefore does not apply in this matter because plaintiff was performing demolition work at the time of the alleged incident.

Labor Law § 200 causes of action applies where the accident was caused by a dangerous condition on the construction site. Under Labor Law § 200 when the owner or contractor has control over the work site and either created the dangerous condition causing an injury, or failed to remedy the dangerous or defective condition after they knew or should have known about it, they can be held liable under section 200. Likewise, 12 NYCRR 23-1.5 (c) (3), requires that all safety devices, safeguards and equipment must be kept sound and operable, and shall be immediately repaired or restored or immediately removed from the job site if damaged. This portion of the regulation imposes an affirmative duty on contractors to correct and make necessary repairs or replacement to structural defects or unsafe conditions in equipment or machinery upon discovery or actual notice of the structural defect or unsafe condition.

For accidents that occur because a construction worker slipped and fell on ice or ice contributed to the accident, 12 NYCRR 23-1.7 (d) requires that ice and snow shall be removed from worksites so as to provide safe footing. Likewise in terms of other slippery conditions and tripping hazards, § 23-1.7 (e) (2), requires that floors, platforms and similar areas where persons work or pass shall be kept free from accumulations of dirt and debris and from scattered tools and materials and from sharp projections insofar as may be consistent with the work being performed

Our Construction accident lawyers are available for consultations in our Manhattan or Westchester offices.

 
The Law Offices of Michael H. Joseph