Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Jobsite Accidents Kill Two Construction Workers

Worker Fatally Electrocuted Working on Scissor Lift  


An electrician died while doing work at an upstate yogurt plant. The worker was on a scissor lift doing electrical work early during the morning of September 11 when he came into contact with a live wire.

Police, fire and emergency personnel were called to the Fage USA facility in upstate Johnstown, which is located between Albany and Syracuse, to respond to the “industrial accident.”

According to OSHA’s most recent statistics, 66 workers in the U.S. died from electrocution in 2012, representing 8.1 percent of all fatal construction accidents.

The worker, Roopnarine Surajpel, 28, of Schenectady was pronounced dead at Nathan Littauer Hospital in Gloversville. The electrician worked for Schenectady Electric, a subcontractor performing work at the facility.

The project, which started in November 2012, will include a parking lot, silos and a whey pretreatment plant. Work on a roughly 39,000-square-foot addition to the Proliant Dairy, which would run a pipe from the Fage USA facility, is set to begin in May.

The federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration is investigating the incident.

OSHA lists electrocution among its “Focus Four,” or the four leading construction site hazards. The other hazards on the list are falls, struck by object and caught-in or caught-between accidents.

In an effort to raise awareness among supervisors and workers about these hazards and reduce accident-related injuries and deaths, OSHA has issued a variety of educational and prevention materials that can be found on its website.

Construction Worker Crushed in Midtown Manhattan

A concrete slab weighing thousands of pounds crashed to the ground on Tuesday, trapping and killing a worker at a Midtown Manhattan jobsite. The 27-year-old construction worker was pronounced dead at the scene. Construction at the site has been suspended indefinitely.

The incident happened at 326 West 37th Street, where workers are excavating an old parking lot to build a 22-story hotel.

The cause of the accident was not immediately clear, but the man was working to secure the foundation of a building next to the site when a piece of concrete from that building came loose around 1:30 p.m., officials said.

The man was working below grade at 326 West 37th Street with another worker, when a 4-foot by 8-foot slab came undone from an adjacent building and crushed him.

The second man leapt to safety, but the victim was pinned beneath the slab, with only his arm visible as emergency workers rushed to the scene.

Rick Chandler, the commissioner of the New York City Buildings Department, said the digging to excavate the site “compromised the foundation of the neighboring building,”

More than 100 workers were evacuated from the construction site — at 326 West 37th Street, between Eighth and Ninth Avenues — because of stability concerns.
The construction project is converting a parking lot into a 22-story McSam budget hotel, with over 240 guest rooms.

Construction at the site has been suspended indefinitely.

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