Construction workers in New York might find comfort in knowing that statistics show they are safer on the job than those outside of the five boroughs. The New York Committee for Occupational Safety and Health recently released a study named "Deadly Skyline," in which concern is expressed about the increase in fatal construction workers' accidents across the state. However, fatality rates within the boroughs of New York show a significant decline over the most recent five-year period.
Every year, thousands of preventable incidents cause severe or even fatal injuries to New York workers. A significant percentage of these are construction workers' accidents involving falls from rooftops. Sadly, many employers in the construction industry prioritize profit over employee safety.
Scaffolds typically pose severe safety hazards, which are exacerbated during the New York winter months. Employers are responsible for the safety and health of employees, and the only way to do that is to comply with federal and state safety standards. Sadly, many work-related injuries are suffered in construction workers' accidents that involve safety violations.
Among the many tall buildings in New York City, the wind in January can feel stronger and colder than anywhere else. Although construction activities are limited in the dead of winter, workers face increased risks in any outdoor jobs they do at this time. Construction workers' accidents can occur if special precautions are not in place.
Safety authorities in New York City expressed their concern about the numbers of lives that are lost in the city's construction industry. Reportedly, the numbers of construction workers' accidents that were recorded until October this year already met the margins of the full 12 months of recent years. They also compared the numbers of injuries and fatalities with pre-recession years, with grim conclusions.
Safety authorities in New York expect construction company owners to ensure that a competent person is appointed on all job sites. It is one of the many measures required in the quest to prevent construction workers' accidents. What qualifications are necessary for someone to be competent? There are no specific qualifications, nor does the Occupational Safety and Health Administration mandate particular standards for such a person.
The Department of Buildings issued an order to stop work at a New York construction site in Brooklyn. These steps are usually taken after fatal construction workers' accidents. However, it is sad that lives must be lost before affirmative action is taken against negligent construction company owners. A family who lost a loved one on the Thanksgiving eve, supported by the Brooklyn Borough President, asked for a thorough investigation into the tragic death of their loved one.
When employers in New York are deemed grossly negligent in cases that led to serious injuries to workers, they stand a chance of being criminally charged. One of the many construction workers' accidents in New York led to assault charges against a subcontractor and a site superintendent after two workers suffered life-altering injuries. The incident that gave rise to these charges occurred in June.
With increased activities in the New York City building industry, concern about worker safety led to a new law that mandates more training. The New York City Department of Buildings has data that indicates a significant rise in injuries and deaths resulting from construction workers' accidents. Although the law that had already been revised once was planned to become effective on Dec. 1, 2018, the deadline has now been moved to June 1, 2019.
As the harsh New York winter weather approaches, employees who work outdoors need special protection to avoid injuries related to extreme cold. Construction workers' accidents can be prevented if employers schedule most of the indoor jobs for the coldest days. Two of the most common weather-related conditions during winter months include hypothermia and frostbite, both of which make workers vulnerable to additional injuries.