A 56-year old construction worker was killed by a fall from heights in New York City on the morning of November 15 of this year. Jaime Sillart, a native of New Jersey, was part of a crew refreshing the facade of NYU’s Languages and Literature Building at 19 University Place. Though the cause of the fall is unclear as yet, it appears the man fell six stories from scaffolding at the jobsite onto the roof of an adjacent building. Sillart was rushed to Bellevue hospital in critical condition but he had already suffered fatal injuries in the fall. He succumbed to his wounds just a few hours later.
Falls from heights in New York City are one of the leading causes of death among construction workers. A 2011 report from the New York City Health Department shows that nearly 60% of all fatal construction accidents in NYC were fall related with falls from scaffolding accounting for 31% of those. Shockingly, the majority of fatalities occurred during falls from heights of just 7 to 20 feet.
In fact, OSHA statistics show that such accidents were by far the most common fatal incidents across the United States accounting for more than 1/3 of all fatal job-related accidents in 2012. Not coincidentally, lapses in fall protection protocols (missing barriers, improper warning signs, failing to ensure the structural integrity of work surfaces, and lack of safety nets or personal fall arrest systems) are the most common jobsite violation cited by OSHA inspectors.
Injured workers have the law behind them in these kinds of cases. The New York Labor Law imposes complete liability on the property owner and general contractor for the construction project regardless of whether the construction worker contributed to the cause of the accident.
If you or a loved one has been injured in a similar scaffolding accident in New York, you may have legal options available to you. Injured workers can seek compensation for unpaid medical bills, past and future lost wages and pain and suffering for their injuries. Don’t let a construction accident derail your life. A financial award can help ease the pain and stress of the financial burden and help with the healing process. Contact a New York City construction accident lawyer with experience in construction accidents immediately.