New York City Construction Accident Lawyer

Fallen scaffolding on top of a brown building

If you or a family member are injured on a construction site, call the Law Office of Nicholas E. Tzaneteas, Construction Accident Lawyers New York City, Bronx, Brooklyn, Queens, and Manhattan for a free consultation. We are here to help injured workers get the maximum compensation to which they are entitled in a construction accident.

Construction workers throughout New York City, Bronx, Brooklyn, Queens, and Manhattan are responsible for new builds, renovations and building maintenance. By the very nature of their job, construction workers face significant personal injury risks — from slips and falls to electrocutions, burns and other hazards.

According to the Occupational Safety & Health Administration (OSHA), the construction industry is among the most hazardous, with one of five workplace fatalities related to construction.

How Construction Accidents Happen: Common Causes

A New York City, Bronx, Brooklyn, Queens, and Manhattan construction worker often faces difficult or even hazardous conditions on the job., which lead to personal injury, especially if others’ recklessness, ignorance, or negligence causes the injury. Common construction site accidents include:

  • Falls from ladders and scaffolding, particularly defective or improperly maintained ladders and scaffolding that cause fractures, a traumatic brain injury, spinal cord injuries, and other serious injury claims
  • Falls through openings or gaps in flooring, unmarked holes, or uncovered tripping hazards causing broken bones and other catastrophic injuries
  • Electrocutions, severe burns or other electrical injuries from faulty or damaged wiring, failure to properly disconnect electrical service before electricians complete their work, and defective or malfunctioning equipment
  • Traumatic amputations, fractures, or crushing injuries from accidents with heavy machinery such as cranes, forklifts, dump trucks, and earth-moving equipment
  • Slips or falls from aerial lifts, either due to improper equipment maintenance or absent or faulty fall-protection gear
  • Injuries from failure to provide or maintain proper safety equipment, including hard hats, welding face shields, safety harnesses, and similar protective gear
  • Injuries from poorly marked hazards or inadequate lighting in work areas

Construction accident victims may suffer minor injuries. Or, their injuries may have life-altering consequences, requiring expensive medical treatment and long-term rehabilitation for the injured worker to recover. Some construction-related accidents may lead to death.

According to the Department of Buildings, in New York, there were 505 construction-related injuries in 2021, three more than the previous year. Meanwhile, there were 9 construction-related fatalities in 2021, one more than in 2020. Falls accounted for 7 out of the 9 construction fatalities.

The Department of Buildings also reported that after a three-month probe into unsafe working conditions, there were 1,499 stop-work orders across the five boroughs including in New York City, Bronx, Brooklyn, Queens, and Manhattan.

Worker Compensation Benefits for Construction Accident Cases

Construction workers injured on the job can receive workers compensation benefits which will pay for medical bills, lost wages up to a certain amount (up to two-thirds of salary in NY), rehabilitation and benefits for survivors in the event of death. Unfortunately, workers don’t always receive the benefits to which they are entitled and in some cases claims are denied. It’s prudent to work with a construction accident lawyer if you are injured on the job.

Additional Legal Protections, Avenues for New York Injured Construction Workers

In addition to Workers’ Comp benefits, depending on the construction accident, injured workers in New York have other avenues available to them, including pursuing a personal injury lawsuit to recover compensation and/or for a wrongful death claim.

New York has a series of Labor Laws designed to protect construction workers from dangerous or unsafe workplace conditions. Injured workers can file a lawsuit for certain types of accidents as a result of workplace negligence on the part of construction companies and property owners. A construction accident lawyer will explain and help navigate these laws properly. In the meantime, here’s a brief overview.

Labor Law Section 200

New York LAB §200 places a “general duty to protect [the] health and safety of employees” upon any employer where workers could be at risk while performing their regular job tasks. Employers (property owners, GCs) must ensure that workspaces have been built, equipped, and operated safely for both employees and visitors. Also, all fixtures, equipment, and machinery must be set up and used according to safety regulations, including providing adequate lighting, support, or protective gear.

These provisions also cover the building codes that regulate issues common for construction sites. Included are:

  • Fire prevention and suppression
  • Elevators and other vertical transportation
  • On-site sanitation and health services
  • Protection from electric shock or industrial radiation

Labor Law Section 240

Known in New York City as the “Scaffolding Law,” New York LAB §240 requires employers to provide scaffolding that can support at least four times the total weight of all workers and equipment that will work at heights. All scaffolding taller than 20 feet from the working surface must also have a securely attached safety rail that runs along the supported platform’s entire length. Furthermore, the whole apparatus must be fastened in place so that it cannot become unstable, collapse, or tip over.

General contractors who provide scaffolding for their employees are also responsible for providing personal protective equipment (PPE), including fall protection gear, as well as training their employees on general scaffold safety and proper use and maintenance of their PPE.

The Scaffold Law not only governs construction employers’ obligations to protect workers at heights, but it also gives those workers the right to seek compensation for any injury or death caused by a fall or an object that fell from a height. Accident investigations evaluate violations on a case-by-case basis, and both the general contractor and the property manager could be held liable for the injury or death. That is, a long track record of safety will almost certainly have no bearing on the fault assigned to a negligent contractor or owner in a personal injury lawsuit.

Labor Law Section 241

Like the Scaffolding Law, New York LAB §241 focuses on the risks particular to construction sites. It outlines specific provisions for demolition and excavation activities and holds contractors, owners, and agents responsible for securing their job sites’ safety and protecting their workers.

In New York, under the Scaffolding Laws, an injured worker on a construction site can sue a third party and collect workers compensation benefits. Even if the employee is already receiving workers’ compensation, they may be able to sue the negligent third party — a the property owner or general contractor for their injury.

What to Do Following a Construction Site Accident

Injured workers in the greater New York City area have specific rights and obligations under municipal and state labor laws. The New York State Workers’ Compensation Board requires an injured construction worker to take the following actions:

  • Seek medical help immediately.
  • Notify supervisors about the injury itself and its likely causes as soon as possible.
  • Follow medical professionals’ instructions for recovery until cleared to return to work.

If you suffer an injury in a New York City, Bronx, Brooklyn, Queens, and Manhattan construction area, and you believe that your injury was the result of the actions, inactions, or negligence of others, you may also have a legal personal injury case. To preserve your rights, take the following steps after an injury:

  • Record the scene of the accident and equipment present at the scene with photographs, if possible.
  • Document all of your injuries, including photos and medical records.
  • Keep all medical records and any other documentation related to the injury, including records from employers.
  • Obtain the contact information of anyone who may have witnessed the injury.
  • Call a New York City, Bronx, Brooklyn, Queens, and Manhattan construction accident lawyer.

Contact the New York City, Bronx, Brooklyn, Queens, and Manhattan Law Offices of Nicholas E. Tzaneteas

The Law Office of Nicholas E. Tzaneteas can help those who are victims of construction site injuries. As experienced New York City, Bronx, Brooklyn, Queens, and Manhattan construction accident attorneys and personal injury law firm, we have helped injured clients recover millions of dollars in judgments and settlements.

If you or a loved one had a workplace accident in NYC and suffered an injury through no fault of your own, you may be eligible for substantial financial compensation for medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering. You may be entitled to benefits under workers’ compensation insurance and damages as a result of negligence from the liable parties.

You have specific rights if you have been injured on the job. Our construction accident attorney law firm can provide you with the legal representation you need to preserve those rights and fight on your behalf.

We have many years of experience in practice areas dealing with insurance companies, workers compensation claims, employers and holding the responsible party accountable. There may be time limitations regarding injury claims — call us today to speak to our New York City, Bronx, Brooklyn, Queens, and Manhattan, NY construction accidents lawyer professionals for a free consultation or contact us online.

The content provided in this article is strictly informational and should not be construed as legal advice.


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