Every homeowner is required by law to maintain their decks and their properties in a safe condition at all times. To prevent accidents from occurring, on June 21, 2010 the New York City Buildings Department launched the No-Penalty Deck and Porch Inspection Program, an initiative to help property owners throughout the City ensure their decks and porches are structurally sound and in compliance with City regulations. Under the program, there is no risk or violation for the initial visit by the Department. In the event that repairs are needed, or unsafe conditions that do not present an imminent danger are found, inspectors will defer issuing violations to allow property owners sufficient time to take corrective action. The program ends on August 1, 2010. The No-Penalty Deck and Porch Inspection Program is timed to coincide with the summer months when these structures will be used more frequently. Aging and seasonal changes in weather are significant factors that can make t
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Two deadly crane collapses in 2008, ignited furious investigations into the world of construction cranes and their safety, or lack thereof. Crane rigger William Rapetti has been indicted for manslaughter. Although not involved in the crane collapses, one investigation led to the guilty plea by James Delayo, the city's former chief crane inspector, pleaded guilty in March to approving cranes that he had not inspected, and issuing operators licenses to people who had not earned them. Nu-Way Crane Service owner Michael Sackaris pleaded guilty in May to paying one such bribe. Nu-Way employee Michael Pascalli guilty to a misdemeanor charge of filing a false document in exchange for probation. An inspector in Mr. Delayos unit was indicted on charges of lying about inspecting the Tagged with: Events Construction Accidents Construction Accident Crane Personal Injury Lawyer
Retaining walls are designed to hold back soil that would move to a more natural slope or incline if the wall was not in place. Every homeowner is required by law to maintain their walls and their properties in a safe condition at all times. Under the No-Penalty Retaining Wall Inspection Program, homeowners may call 311 to request an inspection of their retaining wall without the penalty of violations. Every once in a while you heara story in the news about a retaining wall that collapsed on a worker engaged in a construction project on an adjoining property where the worker is injured ordies. This years program may be more important than in other years because this years unprecedented rainfall could compromise the stability of retailing walls. As temper
The New York City Buildings Departments Construction Safety Week has, since 2005, been a week-long series of events aimed at raising awareness about safe construction practices. Construction-related fatalities dropped 84% in 2009 when compared to 2008, and these events are a critical way to continue that trend. This year Construction Safety Week will run from April 26 to April 30, 2010. Events during the week will include construction site visits to discuss safety issues with workers, information seminars to review construction trends and specific operations and community meetings in all five boroughs. This years seminars are Maintaining Safety at Stalled Construction Sites, Requirements for Site Safety Professionals and Special Inspections, Safe Practices at High Rise Construction Sites, Building in a Dense Urban Environment, and Safety and Sustainability in the Building Code & Zoning
Last week New York City's former chief crane inspector, James Delayo, admitted that he took "more than $10,000" in bribes to fake inspections and overlook unqualified crane operators. Prosecutors have said Delayo's individual payoffs ranged from $200 to $3,000. Delayos crimes are said to be unrelated to the two fatal crane collapses that occurred in 2008. Delayo's plea deal shaved his prison time from seven years to just two to six years. A good deal for him, but what message does it send?The money he took helped only him, but the phony inspections put the public in mortal danger. Its probably purely fortuitous that the fatal crane accidents did not involve Delayos crimes. Unless proving the crimes would have been difficult or Delayos plea is contingent upon information he already provided or will be providing to authorities, it is hard to justify the potentially short p
Criminal Charges Against Individuals and Corporations Shed Light on Cause of 2008 Crane Collapse in Manhattan
On March 8, 2010, two individuals and two corporations were indicted on criminally negligent homicide, manslaughter and other charges related to the May 30, 2008 crane collapse in New York City that killed two people and seriously injured a third.The indictment describes the callous indifference to safety by the defendants who decided, in an effort to lessen the down-time of and lost rental income from a broken crane, to use a cheaper and quicker means of repair from a Chinese company whose qualifications had not been verified. The collapse of the crane was caused by the failure of a structural weld in the cranes turntable, a mechanism that enables the upper portions of the crane to swivel. The weld failure caused the cranes cab, boom, and other upper sections to break off and fall to the sidewalk and street from an elevation of approximately 200 feet.
New York City Buildings Commissioner announced an 84% decrease in fatal construction-related accidents in New York City in 2009 when compared to the previous year. However, the total number of construction-related accidents and injuries rose in 2009. The Department attributes the increase primarily to more accident reporting by industry members. The total number of reported construction accidents rose from 151 in 2008 to 224 in 2009, and the total number of reported injuries rose from 178 in 2008 to 246 in 2009. The Department also headed-off a conclusion that the decrease in fatal construction-related accidents was due to reduced construction activity due to the economy, noting that while initial perm
Does Anybody See Those On-Line NYC Buildings Department Advisories to Take Precautionary Steps at Construction Sites In Preparation for Gusts Of High Wind?
New York City didnâ€™t get the snowstorm forecasted for this past weekend, but the City Department of Buildings issued whatâ€™s become its customary and standard warning to contractors to secure construction sites when the forecast calls for severe weather and gusts of high winds. A review of the Buildings Departmentâ€™s website reveals that it has been routinely issuing such advisories on-line for several years. Yet just 2 weeks ago a 15-block area near City Hall Park was closed to pedestrians and traffic after high winds scattered debris from a nearby construction site where a 77-story tower is being built on Spruce Street.Â A piece of metal was found two blocks away at City Hall Park.Â Â The building received nine other violations over the past six months for failing to keep the construction area free of debris, and other Â issues. The Buildings Department warning â€
Court of Appeals Broadens Construction Worker Safety Statute to Apply Where Worker Neither Fell Nor Was Struck By Falling Object
There is a line of cases requiring that a construction worker either fall or be struck by a falling object in order for there to be considered a gravity-related risk so as to invoke the absolute liability provisions of Labor Law 240(1) (New Yorks Scaffold Law). No more. In Runner v. New York Stock Exchange, Inc., --- N.E.2d ----, 2009 WL 4840213 (decided December 17, 2009), the worker did not fall. Nor was he struck by a falling object. Instead,the workerwas injured because a makeshift counterweight system proved insufficient to control the force gravity exerted upon an 800-pound reel of wire the workers were moving
In Affri v. Basch, --- N.E.2d ----, 2009 WL 4030863 (November 24, 2009), the plaintiff was a neighbor of the defendant homeowner for whom he had previously provided handyman work. This time the plaintiff was performing renovation work including installing appliances. Plaintiff fell from a ladder while installing a vent on the roof and suffered injuries that required several surgeries. The defendants moved for summary judgment contending that the situation fell under the one or two-family dwelling exception of Labor Law 240(1) and 241(6). These sections except from its provisions owners of one and two-family dwellings who contract for but do not direct or control the work. The issue in the case was whether in inducing the plaintiff to install the vent through the Tagged with: Construction Accidents Construction Accident Labor Law Personal Injury Lawyer Accident Attorney