Rushed work is often the cause of construction accidents. This is why it was alarming when the New York Post (3.25.15) reported that workers said “they have been under huge pressure to complete” art mogul Larry Gagosian’s reported $70 million Upper East Side mansion.
Rushing may help explain the cause of the ironworker’s tragic death at the mansion. He fell from a ladder and suffered multiple serious injuries.
The employee was installing a plate under a second-floor balcony at the time of the accident. According to the New York Post, the worker was rushed to the hospital with multiple broken bones and severe internal bleeding. The worker also suffered a heart attack.
The Post reported “there [was] no confirmation that the urgency played a role in the fatal accident,” however, the tabloid then cited an on-site source who said that Gagosian’s estate manager, Dana Stanley, “was threatening liquidated damages if they didn’t finish up by the end of this month.”
A thorough investigation will reveal the root cause of the incident. Rushing through construction work can have serious consequences and it will likely be considered as part of the investigation. Rushed work is a true threat to safety because when the focus of a construction project is speed, safety considerations often become secondary. This is despite employment policies stating that safety is a “priority.” Workers who rush may take shortcuts that can result in accidents. Rushing also deprives workers of the time they need to work carefully and deliberately and to think about potential hazards and getting the job done right.
Construction work is one of the deadliest occupations in America. According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), 4405 construction workers lost their lives in workplace accidents in 2013. Falls from heights are the top cause of fatalities in construction, including one of the most common causes of death for ironworkers. Tragically, when it comes to falls, more ironworkers are killed than workers in any other construction occupation. The rate of work-related deaths among ironworkers is 10 times higher than the construction average.
Workers who have been injured on a construction site should contact The Perecman Firm to discuss worker rights and the facts about a case.
Gagosian’s 20,000-square-foot mansion is located at 4 E. 75th St.