On Feb. 13, 2004, plaintiff, 46, a construction worker, fell about 7 feet while trying to build a scaffold on the job, which was at Boys and Girls High School, which is located at 1700 Fulton St., in Brooklyn. He claimed that he sustained an injury of a shoulder.
Worker sued the school's owner, the school's operator, and two of the project's contractors. He alleged that the defendants violated the labor law.
Plaintiff claimed that he had been trying to fit the bottom of one pipe into the top of the pipe below it when he fell. He said that he had been pushing the pipe frame with his foot because the pipes were bent, which is when his foot slipped.
Plaintiff’s counsel claimed that the incident stemmed from an elevation-related hazard, as defined by Labor Law 240(1), and that he was not provided the proper, safe equipment that is a requirement of the statute.
Defense counsel contended that plaintiff was the sole cause of his accident. Plaintiff's counsel moved for summary judgment of liability, and the motion was granted. The matter proceeded to damages.
Plaintiff sustained a tear of his left, nondominant shoulder's rotator cuff. The injury necessitated three surgeries, and he claimed that he bears residual scar tissue, arthritis and fibrosis.
Plaintiff claimed that he suffers residual disability that prevents his resumption of construction work, but his treating physician acknowledged that he can perform sedentary work. However, he speaks limited English, and he contended that his poor language skills will prevent his procurement of work.
Plaintiff sought recovery of his future medical expenses, his past and future lost earnings, and damages for his past and future pain and suffering. The trial lasted seven days and the jury deliberated for 3 hours before making their decision. Case settled after trial for $3,100,000.
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