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Fatal Construction Fall at Queens Worksite

An Ecuadorian construction worker was killed in a tragic construction accident last week after falling 20-ft down an open shaft on a worksite in Queens. Channel 4 News reported the worker was moving a plywood board on the ground level of the building at St. Nicholas Avenue in Ridgewood when he fell through a hole into the basement. 

Initially, the worker was rescued by F.D.N.Y. emergency crews and taken to Wyckoff Hospital in critical condition, where he later succumbed to his injuries. Several other construction crew employees reported the man was a good worker and father who will be missed. 

Sadly, this is not the first accident to take place at the St. Nicholas Avenue worksite. The NYC Department of Buildings reported an ongoing investigation into a February accident when a fence gate reportedly injured a worker after falling on top of him. The St. Nicholas Avenue building is slated to become a 17-story high rise, one of the tallest in the Ridgewood area. Whether construction will continue after this most recent incident remains undetermined. 

Falls Are the Leading Cause of Construction Fatalities

Falls continue to remain the leading cause of construction fatality in the country, topping the Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s (O.S.H.A.) Fatal Four list every year. In 2020, the Bureau of Labor Statistics (B.L.S.) reported 1,008 occupational fatalities in the construction industry. Among these accidents, 368 were due to falls on the worksite. 

Falls down elevator shafts are common on construction sites in NYC, where most buildings under construction are skyscrapers requiring elevators. The B.L.S. reports that an average of 27 people are killed and 10,200 injured each year in elevator accidents. Nearly half of all fatalities reported are due to falls due to ​​defects in the wiring, pulley systems, door operation, improper maintenance, or in the case of work accidents, open and unmarked shafts. 

Pazer Epstein Jaffe Fein & Gozenput, P.C. NYC Construction Accident Attorneys 

At the law firm of Pazer Epstein Jaffe Fein & Gozenput, P.C., we have been fighting for New York City workers and victims of construction accidents for over 60 years. If you or a loved one has sustained a serious injury on a construction site, our experienced trial attorneys are here to help. Contact us for a free consultation anytime through our online form or call 212-227-1212 for a free case evaluation.

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