A worker has been hospitalized with severe injuries after a construction accident when part of a Bensonhurst school’s roof collapsed the morning of July 5. According to a News 12 report, the incident occurred at the Edward B. Shallow School on 16th Avenue. Officials said workers were doing routine maintenance on the building when a section of the roof collapsed. One man, who was using heavy equipment, fell through the roof onto the top floor. Emergency workers arrived quickly and the worker is expected to survive. The Department of Education said in a statement that no students or staff members were inside the building when a section of the roof collapsed. The Department of Buildings is evaluating the structure for safety and stability.
According to U.S. Occupational Health and Safety Administration (OSHA), struck-by injuries accounted for 93 construction worker deaths in 2016, which is 9.4 percent of the 991 fatalities caused by construction site hazards. This is due to the numerous hazards that can create struck-by injuries. There are four common struck-by hazards in construction: struck-by flying objects, struck-by falling objects, struck-by swinging objects and struck-by rolling objects.
Unstable structures in a construction site are one of the main causes of struck-by accidents. It is important that construction companies, contractors, building owners, etc. take the necessary safety measures to ensure the worksite is free from hazards. Falling structures such as roofs or retaining walls may result in major injuries including crushing injuries and head trauma, which may prove life changing or even fatal.
Common Causes and Signs of Roof Collapse
A roof collapse incident has the potential to result in major injuries or even death. There are a number of causes and signs that a roof might collapse.
Weather damage: There are several weather-related factors that may damage your roof. One of the most common ones is snow accumulation. The roof may collapse due to the extra weight the structure has to bear and was not designed for. Wind and water damage are also other common factors. Weather-related situations should be a sign to building owners and others to conduct roof inspections.
Sagging, bends or ripples: It is extremely rare for a roof to collapse suddenly without any symptoms of stress or strain. Typically, some sections of the roof start showing signs of stress before others. For example, a sagging ceiling is a cause for immediate investigation. Bends or ripples in the roof supports are signs of structural stress.
Cracks: Cracks in the masonry, ceiling or interior walls are all signs that your roof may potentially collapse. Cracks that appear point to structural failure and damage. When you see these cracks, an immediate inspection is required to find out why that happened.
Leaks: Leaking is another sign that your roof is in trouble. A leak is a clear sign that water is getting into your roof structure. If you spot a leak, you need to identify the source of the leak and whether the structures have been damaged.
Sounds: If you hear creaking or popping, it is important that you investigate your roof right away. Do not automatically assume that your building is simply settling or aging.
Contacting an Experienced Construction Accident Lawyer
Workers who are injured in construction accidents may be able to seek workers’ compensation benefits, which typically cover medical and drug expenses and a portion of lost wages. In addition, workers and their families may be able to file a third-party lawsuit for substantial money damages against a number of parties, and therefore have two sources of compensation. Third-party claims are filed against parties other than the employer or co-employees and may include general contractors, sub-contractors, building owners, managing agents, construction companies, etc.
If you have been injured in a construction accident, the experienced New York personal injury attorneys at the Law Offices of Kenneth A. Wilhelm can help you better understand your legal rights and options, and also fight hard to recover just compensation for you.
Our law firm recovered $3,375,576 for a construction worker (an undocumented immigrant) who was injured on the job – one of the highest construction case settlements in New York that year. Also, one of our clients obtained a verdict for $43,940,000 and another of our clients got a verdict for $23,500,000, both in medical malpractice cases.
Please contact us TOLL FREE 24 hours a day, 7 days a week at 1-800-WORK-4-YOU (1-800-967-5496). WE CAN EVEN COME TO YOU. There is no attorneys’ fee unless we recover money for you. We can also help with personal injury and medical malpractice cases in New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, Pennsylvania, or Florida. If you have been injured in any of the 50 U.S. states, please call us and we will try to help you with your case.
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