A disturbing pattern of scaffold-related construction injuries continues in New York City. While developers and contractors enrich themselves, many laborers risk their lives in unsafe conditions.
On January 3, three workers plunged one story from a code-violating sidewalk shed as they were installing a scaffold on Driggs Avenue in Brooklyn, according to an ABC-7 news report. ABC reported that the workers fell when a parapet wall failed at the Williamsburg site.
Why do dangerous conditions persist?
The ABC story indicated that the accident prompted a Stop Work Order from the Department of Buildings (DOB), stating that there were two violations. One was related to the construction of the shed, and one was issued for failing to safeguard.
It’s hard to understand why some builders don’t follow basic safety rules. Whether they’re cutting corners to save time or money or they’re simply ignorant, these parties need to be held accountable when their actions hurt people.
What protections do injured workers have?
Workers are vulnerable to serious injuries and death when project owners and contractors act without regard for their safety, but the law provides civil (and sometimes even criminal) consequences for such negligence. The good news is that injured workers and their families can bring third-party claims — lawsuits that can result in significant money damages — against negligent parties.