Over the past few years, New York City has seen catastrophic accidents involving construction cranes. Most notably, a massive crane collapsed and killed a passerby in lower Manhattan in February 2016, when high winds were present. The tragedy led to greater regulations regarding the operation of cranes under windy conditions, but other crane-related accidents have occurred since then.
Inspectors from the city’s department of buildings (DOB) made surprise crane visits in early April, according to ABC 7 Eyewitness News. Do stricter inspection protocols and enforcement practices make workers and innocent bystanders safer?
City rules and construction company risks
The city has long had crane rules in place, but they are not always followed by builders and contractors. Numerous worker deaths, injury to innocent bystanders and massive property damage occur because of improper crane use. Cutting corners on safety is risky, but it can be profitable.
Inspectors are making efforts to crack down on unsafe crane operation, but they can’t be everywhere at all times. According to the ABC 7 report, the annual number of crane violations in the city has climbed over the last five years, from 4,000 to 8,000. The city’s crane rules include the following:
- Cranes must have a “lift director” in charge of operation.
- Cranes must be outfitted with real-time wind-measurement devices.
- Cranes must cease operation when winds hit 30 miles per hour.
- Crane operators can be fined, personally, up to $25,000 for infractions.
If you have experienced a construction injury or the loss of a family member
If you or a loved one has experienced the hardships that come with a construction injury, get the legal help you need. You may be entitled to money damages through a third-party claim.