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New York Construction Accident Sends Two Workers to Hospital

Two construction workers were trapped recently when the trench they were working in at a Rye, New York home collapsed. They were buried chest-deep in dirt for 90 minutes before rescue workers were able to free them. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration, a division of the U.S. Department of Labor, has launched an investigation to look into the cause of the accident.

While the construction workers were alert and conscious throughout the ordeal, injuries related to the collapse — caused by the force of falling dirt and debris — were sufficient to send them to the hospital. Officials say there was nothing set up to prevent the avalanche, and such a safeguard would likely have allowed the work to continue without incident.

Many construction accidents are preventable

Construction sites are inherently dangerous, given the machinery, hazardous debris and precarious positions construction workers are regularly faced with. However, this doesn’t mean danger should be courted with bad planning, negligent oversight and a lack of precautions. If construction accidents can’t be completely eliminated, efforts can at least be made to prevent them.

In addition to the type of collapse experienced by the workers in Rye, the dangers posed by construction work include falls, contact with heavy equipment and electrical accidents. Falls are the leading cause of construction-related deaths in the U.S. and typically occur because of poor scaffolding, improper use of ladders and a lack of protected sides at tall heights. Contact with heavy equipment most frequently refers to accidents involving trucks and cranes, falling walls and other falling objects, such as tools or cinder blocks. And although collapses are one of the dangers of working in trenches, the danger of asphyxiation, drowning or inhaling toxic fumes while working in an enclosed space may actually be greater.

You may have grounds for a lawsuit if you have been injured in a preventable onsite accident while working construction. Contact a personal injury lawyer from Jakubowski, Robertson, Maffei, Goldsmith & Tartaglia, LLP for representation in Long Island, Suffolk County or Nassau County.

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