On a daily basis, individuals who work in the construction industry are exposed to numerous hazards. To illustrate the serious dangers that frequently accompany construction work, during 2014 alone, a total of eight construction workers were killed and 237 injured at construction work sites throughout the city.
A recent investigation by The Wall Street Journal revealed that the many dangers of construction worksites are spilling out onto the sidewalks and streets around them. The WSJ reports that, from 2008 to 2014, a total of 155 pedestrians and passersby were injured in construction accidents. Just last month, a woman was killed when a sheet of plywood blew off a construction fence and struck her.
Other reported construction injuries of pedestrians and passersby involved cases of falling construction materials and debris. For example, since 2008 five individuals have reported suffering injuries when, in three separate incidents, “loads of wet concrete poured down on” them. In another reported 2011 incident, a young child was seriously injured after a construction worker working atop scaffolding dropped a hammer.
In an effort to prevent accidents involving construction fences, last year the city revised its building code. While construction fences erected since the rule change are now supposed to be able to sustain winds of up to 80 MPH, last month’s tragic accident is a reminder that severe safety deficiencies exist around construction sites that pose dangers to unsuspecting passersby and pedestrians.
Every week, there are hundreds of construction projects ongoing throughout the city. Whether a worker or pedestrian, individuals who have been injured in a New York City construction accident would be wise to contact an attorney. An attorney will investigate factors that may have contributed to the accident and work to ensure that responsible parties are held accountable.