Construction is a dangerous industry that frequently calls for the use of hoists, scaffolding, heavy machinery, power tools, and other equipment. Every day, dangerous situations are presented to construction workers, especially those working in New York City. Employers and site operators should exercise caution when it comes to worksite safety regulations and standards due to the unstable nature of construction activity.
Although it is the duty of employers and site operators to provide a safe workplace, not everyone takes this obligation seriously. According to estimates from the U.S. Department of Labor Statistics, the construction sector accounted for more than 1 in 5 workplace fatalities in 2020. A new law in New York aims to hold negligent employers accountable for their deeds, raising responsibility when fatal incidents occur on the job. It is called the Carlos' Law.
The following article will delve deeper into this new legislation. But, if you have questions or were a construction worker injured at work, Brandon J. Broderick, Attorney at Law can help you make sense of this tough situation. Retaining a New York construction accident lawyer would be in your best interest.
Carlos' Law Explained
A recently passed, historic piece of legislation known as Carlos' Law was named for Carlos Moncayo. He worked for a construction company that has received multiple citations for safety infractions. The walls of the 14-foot-deep, unreinforced trench unexpectedly collapsed in April 2015, burying the 22-year-old Moncayo under tons of dirt, causing his death. He was working in the trench at the time.
According to a New York Times report, the circumstances surrounding Moncayo's passing prompted his family to file manslaughter and other charges against two construction supervisors and the businesses they were employed for at the time.
Recently, New York Governor Kathy Hochul signed legislation that seeks to safeguard the security of NYC construction workers while putting further responsibility on businesses that flout safety regulations.
How Can New York's Construction Workers Be Protected Under Carlos' Law?
The new law makes businesses responsible for criminal corporate liability when they “recklessly, intentionally, or knowingly cause the death or serious physical injury” of a worker. This helps to protect New York's construction employees. Such companies may now be subject to severe penalties, including increased maximum fines of up to $500,000. Companies that disregard safety procedures may be subject to harsher sanctions. If a corporation is found guilty of a violation that results in the death or serious injury of a worker, New York courts may also order restitution or compensation.
Supporters of the proposal argue that the OSHA's present penalties and other sanctions do little to motivate companies to take proactive actions to provide a safe workplace for their workers.
Our NYC Construction Accident Attorneys Are Here For You
The growth of New York City is still supported by the labor of construction workers. These important workers need to operate in a safe and secure setting that is free of unneeded risks. With the purpose of defending the rights of all New York City employees, Carlos' Legislation is a positive move. We can help you defend your rights or the rights of a loved one if an injury or death occurs on a New York construction site.