Miami Construction Crane Accident Could Also Be Due To Laws Favoring Contactors and Developers Just Like NYC

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Laws May Not Protect Construction Workers Or Possibly Nearby Residents As New York City Construction Accident Lawyer David Perecman Explains

March 25, 2008 -- David H. Perecman, a veteran New York City construction accident lawyer and co-founder of New York construction accident attorneys law firm Perecman & Fanning, expressed even more sadness as Miami experiences a crane construction accident like New York only a few weeks ago.

"Now the people of Miami have to feel the same pain New Yorkers experienced as tragedy hit's their backyard with construction workers dead resulting from questionable construction practices," said Mr. Perecman. "Although too early to tell, Miami's crane collapse could be another preventable construction site misfortune in an endless string of accidents where construction site workers die or are injured in related accidents. Due to unsafe working conditions, New York City has seen a rise in deaths and accidents and some of the reasoning is because laws don't always protect the workers and people who live around those areas."

The most recent Miami crane construction accidents left two workers dead and five injured compared to the 6 deceased New York City construction workers and 17 others injured on March 15, 2008 when a large construction crane broke apart at New York's 51st street. The New York Times recently reported that construction injuries have almost doubled from 23 in November of 2006 to 42 the same time one year previous, while building code violations increased from 38 to 58 in the same period.

"In New York Construction laws regarding accidents like this crane's collapse can be complicated. Construction workers generally have to rely on 2 statutes, Labor Law 240 or 241. Depending on the facts the first statute may not apply. The second one requires that a worker to prove the violation of a certain specific type of regulation contained in New York's "Industrial Code" (NYCRR rule 23). The problem is that, even though the technology has changed, the Industrial Code has not been updated or revised in over 30 years," said David Perecman."

Worse yet most, if not all, contractors have no idea what the "Industrial Code" is and only comply, if they comply at all with the rules written by Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA). However, an OSHA violation does not allow a worker to sue the owner and contractor under Labor Law 241(6) This is not a minor problem, or just a small technicality It leaves the workers without a case and potentially no way to support their family."

David Perecman is the current Secretary of the New York State Trial Lawyers Association (NYSTLA) and a chair of its Construction Accident Law Committee. Mr. Perecman continues to work with legislators in an effort to strengthen New York's construction and labor laws that real estate developers and insurance companies are attempting to weaken. His experience has allowed him to testify before the Standing Committee on Housing of the New York State Assembly and the Standing Committee on Cities and the Standing Committee on Codes, and regarding this very important issue. Mr. Perecman has expressed concerns regarding the currently outdated laws to the Assembly that New York construction safety laws need to be strengthened. The Crane Construction Accidents in New York City and Miami are example of the tragedies that the New York construction accident attorneys are trying to prevent.


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