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Jose Valdez v. Turner Construction Company, et al.

The worker here was a landscaper who was injured while doing landscaping on the 5th floor roof at John Jay College in New York City. He was detaching a bag of soil that weighed at least 2,500 pounds from a crane that had hoisted the bag up to the roof, and the crane lifted causing the straps connecting the bag to the crane to catch plaintiff’s hand and lift him off the roof. Plaintiff then fell to the roof below. The Court said that the workers Labor Law 200, 240(1), and 241(6) claims could survive because Turner had direct authority over the crane operation. They also said that because the worker’s injuries resulted “directly from the application of the force of gravity to the object,” here the bag of soil, that the worker was entitled to win his Scaffold Law claim and go to trial just for damages.

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