Two NYC Construction Workers Plummet to Their Death

From: U.S. Politics Today.

Two NYC Construction Workers Plummet to Their Death

March 27, 2011

More than 1,000 construction workers are killed on the job every year, according to the National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health, and tens of thousands are injured in workplace accidents.

March 27, 2011 /24-7PressRelease/ — For years, Brett McEnroe and Roy Powell worked together on construction sites throughout New York City. Ironworkers, McEnroe, 49, and Powell, 51, were used to the cold and the heights and generally followed strict safety laws, which required preparing safety platforms and wearing safety harnesses.

But on February 9 while working on a church in Manhattan, the two friends both plummeted to their deaths in a tragic construction accident. According to the police, the men were not using their safety equipment as they worked on an elevator nearly 70 feet above ground.

It’s unclear why the two, who both won safety awards during their long careers, were not wearing the harnesses that would have prevented them from falling or why nets that would have caught them had not been prepared. The construction site had been cited for a variety of violations by the city Buildings Department and was under investigation for failing to follow safety precautions.

Among the violations was the failure to use guardrails and scaffolding by the construction manager, F. J. Sciame of New York. The men were employed by Cross County Contracting of upstate Ulster County, N.Y. The Environmental Control Board also cited the worksite for 10 violations, including a notice for not securing scaffolding.

Co-workers couldn’t fathom why the experienced ironworkers did not follow safety guidelines. Both men had 30 years’ experience, and Powell was named Ironworker of the Year in 1999 by a trade association. They had used the safety equipment on the lower floors of the building and brought the harnesses with them to the top of the elevator but had left them on the side.

More than 1,000 construction workers are killed on the job every year, according to the National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health, and tens of thousands are injured in workplace accidents. In the event of injury, or even death, experts strongly suggest contacting an experienced construction injury attorney to gauge the legal options available.

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