It was a normal, bustling spring day in midtown Manhattan. You can just picture the scene: bright yellow cabs speeding by, people walking briskly back to their offices after lunch break, the sounds of construction workers clanging and cell phones ringing. Unexpectedly, a large crane crumbles to the concrete below, parts of it landing on a townhouse and surrounding buildings. The crane workers were working on the outside of a 43-foot apartment building. The falling debris of the crane killed six workers from the construction site, and one woman from Florida.
Within the next few days, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration investigated what caused the crash. Officials soon announced the companies responsible: Reliance Contractors Group, the general contractor; Rapetti Rigging Services, Inc., the crane erector; and Joy Contractors Inc., the concrete subcontractor on the project. The main charge cited by the OSHA was: “failure to properly train employees about job site hazards and allowing hazards to exist. The companies were fined a total of $313,500. But the company that received the harshest punishment was that of Rapetti Rigging. OSHA stated, “Rapetti had failed to comply with the crane manufacturer’s specifications when erecting and raising the steel tower. The failure of the company to inspect the nylon slings and notice pre-existing cuts and snags was one of three factors that led to the collapse.” That company alone suffered around $220,000 in fines while Reliance Construction Group was issued 11 citations totaling $19,500 and Joy Contractor was issued 14 citations at $74,000. Further investigations are still pending.
The deaths that resulted from this unforeseen disaster were preventable had there been proper safety regulations and equipment enforced. If you or a loved one have been injured in a construction accident due to a company’s negligence, but are unsure of how to proceed, contact the lawyers of:New York Construction Accident Lawyers Sullivan Papain Block McGrath & Cannavo, P.C.
120 Broadway – 18th Floor
New York, NY 10271