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New York City construction workers survive scaffold collapse

Two New York City construction workers found themselves dangling in their safety harnesses 12 stories in the air late last week. Witnesses stood and watched, hoping that the man would not plunge from the collapsed scaffolding at 57th Street and Lexington Avenue in Midtown.

"Oh, my God, it was so scary," a witness told CBS News.

We can only imagine how frightening it must have been for the men suspended more than 100 feet in the air as they hung on, waiting for help. The news report did not contain information about any possible injuries to either of the men.

One woman was in an office on the East 57th Street building where the accident occurred. She could see the foot of one of the men as he dangled from the scaffolding.

"I couldn't even handle it," she told a reporter.

Another witness said he was walking by and looked up, seeing one of the men "hanging by his harness" and the other "standing on top of the scaffold." The incident was caused by a failed scaffold motor, officials said.

For many workers, scaffolding is just one of many tools they use on a daily basis in construction. Unfortunately, too many times scaffolding is improperly erected or there is an equipment malfunction, as in the Friday morning incident.

You might recall that two months ago, a worker fell to his death from scaffolding on West 55th Street near Broadway. In January, rescuers saved two construction workers after a scaffolding collapse.

New York City has perhaps the finest legal protections in the nation available for workers injured in these kinds of incidents. An experienced attorney can help the injured pursue full and fair compensation.

Source: CBS New York, "2 Workers Rescued From Dangling Scaffolding In Midtown," June 20, 2014

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