The number of construction-related accidents and injuries have increased this year as have fatalities, according to new data released for the first three months of the year by the city’s Department of Buildings. Accidents (which can include multiple injuries and/or fatalities) and injuries have each climbed to 72, from 46 and 54, respectively.
The number of fatalities has risen to three from one in the same quarter last year. Two of this year’s deaths were in Manhattan and one was in Brooklyn. In January, a construction worker died after falling down an elevator shaft during the renovation of a landmark townhouse on the Upper West Side. The next month, a construction worker was crushed to death at Greenland Forest City Partners’ Barclays Center. And in March, a woman was fatally hit by a piece of construction site fence in Greenwich Village.
Manhattan, Brooklyn and Queens have seen increases in accidents, while the Bronx and Staten Island has seen decreases year-over-year. When it comes to injuries, Manhattan and Queens have witnessed increases, the Bronx remained flat and Brooklyn and Staten Island have experienced a drop. Accident categories include excavation/soil work, material failure, mechanical construction equipment, scaffold/shoring installations, worker falls and other construction-related.
The construction industry is working hard to keep workers unharmed. As Commercial Observer reported, 44 construction companies called for greater safety efforts at construction sites in the U.S. during the second annual Safety Week in May.