Construction workers were lifting a piece of mechanical equipment on a crane Sunday, May 31 when the equipment reportedly snapped off and fell 28 stories. According to authorities, 10 people were injured in the accident, including two construction workers and eight passersby who were walking or driving below.
Fortunately, all of the victims were only struck by debris and not by the equipment itself, so the injuries were relatively minor. As the equipment fell, it collided several times with the façade of the building, shattering pieces of it from the lower floors. New York Mayor Bill de Blasio said it was also fortunate that the accident occurred on a Sunday morning at a time of day when not as many people would be walking around.
Violations apparently not a factor
According to Rick Chandler, commissioner of the city Buildings Department, there had not been any previous official complaints about the condition of the crane. All of the proper permits for the building were in place. Authorities have launched an investigation into what caused the accident, and the area around the building was closed for the rest of the day to clean up the debris and ensure it was safe for workers, pedestrians and motorists.
Construction companies have a responsibility to ensure all of their equipment is in proper working order at all times so that workers and the general public are safe in the area. These types of companies could be considered liable in accidents if they should have “reasonably known” about the poor condition of their equipment before an accident occurred.
For more information on determining liability after a construction accident, speak with an experienced New York attorney at [ln::firm_name] right away.