Arye, Lustig & Sassower, P.C.

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2017 and 2018: Bad years for NYC construction worker safety

Just when we thought things couldn't get more dangerous for New York construction workers, they did. In a comparison of January-to-July construction accident stats for 2017 and 2018, published by the New York City Department of Buildings (DOB), we see that 2017 was a bad year -- but that 2018 was even worse. When it comes to danger, the numbers illustrate what many workers feel.

We think it's important to know how many workers have been affected by accidents in the city, but also to know where and how the accidents occurred. In its report concerning construction related injuries and fatalities as of July 31, 2018, the DOB has given us the following information about workers who have been hurt and killed on the job this year and last year.


At a glance: January-July 2018 versus January-July 2017

  • During the same period of both years, construction accidents in Manhattan outnumbered accidents in all other boroughs combined. But, notably, the number of accidents in Brooklyn jumped from 67 in 2017 to 107 in 2018.
  • From 2017 to 2018, the fatality number DOUBLED from 4 to 8 during the same period.
  • For the same part of each year, the number of injuries jumped from 401 in 2017 to 469 in 2018.
  • For the same part of each year, the number of accidents increased from 386 in 2017 to 457 in 2018.
  • During ALL of 2017, 75% of worker deaths (9 of 12 total) were placed in the "Worker Fell" category, and there were only three accident types that caused death. Interestingly, only 25% of 2018 fatalities (thus far) were caused by falls, and there were already five types of fatal accidents. This statistic could suggest that overall worker safety has suffered.

Get the legal advice you need

Numbers never tell the whole story. If your family has experienced a construction injury, you may be dealing with a variety of physical, emotional and financial difficulties that are hard to quantify.

Getting detailed, timely legal advice can make a huge difference. Importantly, you and your family may be entitled to money damages through a third-party-claim (a lawsuit) against negligent parties.

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    $2.1 million settlement

    for 33-year old electrician who fell from ladder while attempting to fit heavy cable into crown box when cable sprung back and struck him, causing him to suffer left shoulder injury with impingement.

  • icon2

    $1.6 million settlement

    for 38-year old electrician who slipped and fell on debris on stairway with resulting cervical herniated disc and aggravation of pre-existing arthritic changes.

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    $2.55 million settlement

    for 42-year old electrician who fell into an uncovered, unprotected hole and suffered a severe low back injury with herniated disc(s) that required surgery at L4-5 and L5-S1 levels.

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    $1.75 million settlement

    for 26-year old construction worker who fell through opening in roof and fractured his wrist, requiring surgery with open reduction and internal fixation, external fixation device, and eventual fusion.

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    $2.5 million settlement

    for 38-year old female electrician (with history of prior neck injury) who tripped on uneven Masonite protective floor covering, and suffered neck injury with herniated discs requiring cervical fusion.

  • icon6

    $1.2 million settlement

    during trial for 40-year old sheet metal worker who was struck in the neck and shoulder by an air conditioning unit and suffered herniated cervical discs and cervical radiculopathy.

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