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Scaffolding at construction sites must be carefully constructed in order to avoid an accident. This is especially true in New York City. If there’s a problem with the scaffolding or if companies cut corners on safety to save money, scaffolding accidents can result in serious injuries or even fatalities, especially since many workers in New York work on scaffolding hundreds of feet in the air.
At Giampa Law, our experienced Bronx scaffolding accident lawyers have handled many cases over the years involving scaffolding injuries and other construction accidents in the Bronx and throughout New York City. Our firm is dedicated to helping injured workers and their families obtain the maximum compensation for their injuries.
We thoroughly understand all the state and federal rules and regulations governing scaffolding accidents, including New York Labor Law 240 (1). Enacted in 1885 and known as the “Scaffold Law,” Labor Law 240 requires companies to properly install scaffolding and meet many other safety standards designed to protect workers. When companies fail to follow these laws, our attorneys work tirelessly to hold them accountable for their reckless behavior.
What are common scaffolding accidents?
There are many different types of scaffolding accidents in New York. And each one requires a different approach to address each victim’s unique needs. Some of the most common scaffolding accidents we handle at our firm include:
While workers compensation may help pay for medical expenses and alleviate temporary financial stress associated with not being able to earn money, workers compensation rarely fully compensates injured workers for the full value of their injuries. And what many workers might not realize after a scaffolding accident is they often have the option of suing a third party general contractor, sub-contractor or premises owner in order to receive full compensation for their injuries.
Why do scaffolding accidents happen?
Scaffolding is designed to give workers a stable surface to stand on while working high above the ground. To protect workers, there are state and federal rules and regulations regarding scaffolding that companies must follow. But these rules and regulations aren’t always followed, and workers get hurt. Scaffolding accidents can occur because of:
- Improper installation
- Lack of proper fall protection
- Inadequate protection from falling debris
- Damaged or defective parts
- Lack of inspections
- Inadequate training
What can I be compensated for?
If you or a loved one has been injured in a scaffolding accident in New York City, we can help you obtain the maximum compensation for your injuries against third parties. This includes:
- Compensation for lost wages for time missed from work and future loss for the inability to work in the future.
- Reduced earning capacity if you are no longer able to work in the same capacity or for as many hours as you did prior to the injury.
- Medical expenses for both past expenses and anticipated future expenses.
- Pain and suffering, including physical pain and the loss of enjoyment of life due to not being able to do certain activities due to your accident.
Find out how we can help you. Contact us and schedule your free case evaluation right now.
Falling due to a height differential
Many accidents associated with construction sites in New York involve falling from an elevated work area. Many workers assembling or disassembling scaffolding are working on an elevated work space which requires the use of a fall arrest system or specific guard rails. In addition, many workers using scaffolding are at a heightened risk of a gravity-related work injury.
New York Labor Law has statutorily imputed strict liability upon all general contractors and commercial premises owners with regards to injuries that occur from a gravity-related accident. That means that the company that installed the scaffolding or owns the property can be held legally responsible for such accidents in certain circumstances. That’s why it’s critical that you contact our law firm as soon as possible.
Failure to properly assemble and inspect the construction of scaffolding can lead to a full or partial collapse of scaffolding. In addition, there are many strict weight restrictions for building scaffolding. If companies ignore these restrictions and put too much weight on them, scaffolding collapses can occur and result in serious or catastrophic injuries.
Scaffolding and debris netting around a building need to be properly installed in order to prevent debris from construction or demolition sites falling and hitting someone. In particular, improper construction of screens or canopies which deflect falling debris can lead to serious gravity-related injuries.
New York Labor Law can hold a general contractor or commercial premises owner legally responsible for such injuries. Specifically, state law holds irresponsible companies strictly liable for injuries that may result from elevate work risks. In certain cases, being struck by falling debris can result in holding a third party strictly liable for a worker’s injuries. Find out if you have a strong legal case. Schedule a free case evaluation with our law firm today.
Steel scaffolding that is set up alongside a building has a lot of different parts. In order for the scaffolding to be safe for workers, all those parts must be put together properly. Each piece must be placed correctly, each scaffold connection must be locked. Each upright should have a firm, stable footing. When proper procedure for setting up scaffolding is not followed, it creates an instability in the structure that can result in collapse.
Lack of proper fall protection
When employees will be working on scaffolding above 10 feet, fall protection measures must be put in place, by federal law. One way to do this is to install guardrails on the scaffolding. Another is to set up a harness system that will prevent workers from hitting the ground should the scaffolding collapse. In some cases, both guardrails and harnesses must be used.
Inadequate protection from falling debris
Another danger of scaffolding is tools or debris falling from a great height onto a person down on the ground. Steps must be taken to prevent people from being injured in this manner. They include installing netting and canopies to deflect falling objects. They also require the installation of toeboards on scaffolding to help prevent objects from falling in the first place.
Scaffolding must be able to support a lot of weight. But when parts are damaged or defective, they can break and pose a serious safety risk. This can result in a partial or total collapse of the scaffolding, potentially leaving workers seriously injured.
Federal law requires that scaffolding be carefully inspected before each work shift and after any incident that could affect the integrity of the scaffolding. The purpose of the inspection is to identify any loose, missing or damaged parts that could affect the stability of the scaffolding and lead to a collapse.
Employers are required to give workers training on the proper construction and use of scaffolding. This includes training on the use of fall protection systems, proper handling of materials while on the scaffold, and identifying potential hazards.
Sometimes, companies cut corners to cut costs, or rush a job to make an unrealistic deadline. But when this happens, safety takes a back seat and workers are put at risk of injury or death. Our lawyers have experience in holding negligent companies responsible for worker injuries that occur in scaffolding accidents.