Multiple OSHA Citations Issued for Fatal Brighton Beach Building Collapse

In addition to nine citations issued by the NYC Building Department, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) issued federal citations for eleven violations to SP&K Construction, of Brooklyn, NY, where one worker was killed and four injured as a result of a construction accident in Brighton Beach in November, 2011.

SP&K Construction was pouring concrete into the third and fourth floors when the front bays of the third, fourth and fifth floors collapsed, trapping workers. The construction company had poured the concrete floors in the wrong sequence, starting from the top floor and working down.

OSHA inspectors found that SP&K Construction failed to maintain the structural stability of the floors and the exterior wall framing during the steel erection process, and was issued a citation for: "a willful violation involving the structural instability of the building, a violation committed with intentional knowing or voluntary disregard for the law's requirements, or with plain indifference to worker safety and health."

Kay Gee, OSHA's New York Area Director, stated that: "This employer clearly knew the steel erection was incorrect and unstable, which lead to the death of one worker and the hospitalization of four others...had proper procedures and safeguards been followed, this fatal collapse could have been prevented."

Eight OSHA citations were also issued to the construction company for serious violations that include: "the substantial probability that death or serious physical harm could result from a hazard about which the employer knew or should have known." The citations issued involved lack of fall protection training for workers on scaffolds; unprotected edges of elevated floors, improper bracing of scaffolding, and a lack of scaffold inspection by a competent individual. Two other citations were issued to the construction company for an incomplete injury and illness log. The citations totaled $77,880.

Construction accidents can result in serious injury or death. Seeking legal counsel is the avenue to take so that the injured worker's rights to workers' compensation benefits and compensation for the pain and suffering for the injuries sustained are not lost. An experienced personal injury attorney, specializing in construction accidents, understands all the legal remedies available to accident victims and their families and will work to preserve these rights.

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