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New York Construction Worker Alive After Being Impaled

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Jonathan Hernandez2 years ago

A construction worker was seriously injured after a five-story fall in New York’s Flatiron District.

Details about the Fall in Flatiron Building

The New York Daily News is reporting that a construction worker was impaled on four pieces of steel bar after he fell five stories inside a building that is currently under renovation in the Flatiron Distric. The incident happended early Wednesday, according to authorities.

The victim fell about 50 down a shaft and was impaled inside the 12-story building on W. 17th Street near Sixth Avenue at about 8:25 a.m. The worker was listed in critical condition in Bellevue Hospital.

A witness of the accident, 31-year-old James Apolito, who is an elevator technician, comforted the victim until emergency crews arrived.  According to the witness, the victim fell from the fourth floor and into the basement. The rebar impaled him in his abdomen, back, buttocks, and groin, and held him at least a foot off the ground.

Apolito further stated that it is the responsibility of the construction company to have placed safety caps on the exposed tips of rebar

The witness also said that others tried to gather materials to put underneath the victim to support his weight.

Rick Chandler – the Buildings Commissioner – said that the worker fell off of a ladder while installing sheet rock.

An early investigation by the Buildings Department has found that the worker was not properly secured with safety equipment at the time of the accident, and that the worker was missing a harness as well as a covering for the shaftway.

Other Recent Accidents in the Area

According to the New York Daily News:

  • In August, the city’s Building Department issued a $1,000 fine against 34 17th Street Project LLC – for unsafe and improper use of elevator and hoisting equipment.
  • The fine was paid by the company, but in November, the builders still had not fixed the issue in question.
  • The Buildings Department gave the company another $1,500 civil penalty on them that month for “failing to certify corrections on immediately hazardous violations.”
  • On October 17, 2014, the United States Occupational Safety and Health Administration showed up to another site run by contractors from the New Empire Builder Corp. where they found workers on scaffolding that was resting on two bricks, as well as workers working without fall protection. 


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