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Construction Workers Die Doing Illegal Work in Brooklyn

Updated: Feb 11

Construction Workers Die Doing Illegal Work in Brooklyn

Too often, construction workers find themselves doing things that violate safety regulations – and many die as a result. Such was the case after a recent construction accident in Brooklyn, and it shows just how problematic the construction industry has become in New York. Despite hundreds of years of progress in terms of safety regulations, these accidents continue to happen. At the end of the day, safety regulations are pointless if contractors break them. 

Department of Buildings Says Accident Occurred Due to Illegal Work

In early February of 2024, the Department of Buildings (DOB) announced that a fatal construction accident in Brooklyn occurred because a stop-work order had been violated. The building collapsed with a worker inside, claiming his life. Apparently, the worker was in the basement when a floor collapsed, and this collapse caused catastrophic injuries and death. 

The DOB states that this never should have happened, as they had ordered the cessation of all work. The DOB also points to another violation: For whatever reason, the crew put a bobcat inside the two-story building before the accident. It is likely that this heavy piece of equipment caused the first floor to cave in – right on top of the worker below. 

How Does Gross Negligence Affect Construction Injury Lawsuits?

In cases where there is particularly serious gross negligence or recklessness, it may be easier to pursue a greater level of compensation. This is especially true if the accident leads to death. This might include violating a stop-work order, putting a bobcat inside a home on a fragile wooden floor, and similar acts of misconduct. 

Does the Scaffold Law Apply to Cave-Ins?

For most New York construction accidents, a key question is whether or not the Scaffold Law applies. This type of labor law allows construction workers and their surviving families to sue employers and property owners directly for damages. Generally speaking, this law applies to all gravity-related accidents. 

A floor cave-in could constitute a Scaffold Law violation, although the situation may be somewhat complex. In the past, courts have ruled that the Scaffold Law does not apply to trench cave-ins. However, one could argue that a collapsing floor is very similar to a piece of collapsing scaffolding. In addition, the Scaffold Law has applied to accidents involving falling objects in the past – even those sliding down stairs. If the bobcat fell on top of the victim, this may constitute a textbook case of a gravity-related incident. 

The Scaffold Law is useful because it allows plaintiffs to pursue non-economic damages as well as economic damages. Normally, an injury claim only provides compensation for economic damages under Workers’ Compensation. 

Find an Experienced Workers’ Comp Attorney in Brooklyn

If you have been searching for an experienced workers’ comp attorney in Brooklyn, look no further than the Glassman Law Group. Over the years, we have helped numerous injured plaintiffs throughout the New York area. We also help families who have lost loved ones due to fatal construction accidents. Book your consultation today to pursue compensation for your damages. 


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