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Midtown Accident Shows Why Strict Crane Regulation Is Necessary

A 40-year-old man is dead after a crane collapsed in Midtown this morning. The construction accident occurred as a boom crane was transported via truck. According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), 76 percent of crane accidents involve mobile or tower cranes – like the one at the scene today.

Officials hinted that a mechanism malfunction is to blame, but the investigation is in the early phases.

Accident-scene photographs suggest that the death occurred on the sidewalk of the construction site. Officials have not revealed whether the victim was a construction worker or bystander pedestrian. It is normal for officials to notify the victim’s family before releasing his or her identity to the media.

The crane accident puts another mark on the ugly underside to Manhattan’s beautiful skyline. In March 2008, four construction workers were killed and 17 more injured when a crane fell.

Cranes are closely regulated at the federal, state and municipal level in New York City. Their size and center of balance may bring catastrophic harm if they are not operated and transported with utmost care and compliance. The dangerous nature of cranes also requires a respect for factors beyond man’s control. The weather – particularly wind – can cause devastating accidents, even when there is no user error involved other than bad judgment to ignore environmental conditions.

The construction site will surely be investigated by a variety of officials, including the Occupational Safety and Health Administration. OSHA investigates nearly every accidental workplace fatality in the country and will be especially interested in one involving a crane.

To learn more about this topic and the rights that victims and surviving families may have following an accident, visit our Crane Accidents page.

If you or a family member was the victim of a serious or fatal construction accident, you may secure a free attorney consultation by calling Tolmage, Peskin, Harris, Falick at 212-964-1390 or contacting us online. Our Manhattan law firm has expertly served injury and wrongful death clients for more than 50 years.

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