Ricardo Martinez Kiryas Joel: Ricardo Martinez of Monroe Injured In Kiryas Joel Construction Accident After Falling Through 4th Floor Window On Zupnick Drive
KIRYAS JOEL, NEW YORK (March 17, 2020) – A 30-year-old construction worker from Monroe identified as Ricardo Martinez was seriously injured in a construction accident after falling through the fourth floor of a building.
New York Police Department officials are saying that the accident took place around 11:06 a.m. on Monday. For reasons that remain under investigation Ricardo Martinez was attempting to put a 20-foot water pipe into an opening near a window.
Ricardo Martinez lost his balance and fell through the window. Authorities do not believe that the victim was hooked up to any safety equipment at the time of the accident.
Paramedics rushed to the scene of the construction accident in order to help the victim. Ricardo Martinez sustained a major head injury and was taken by a Kiryas Joel ambulance to the Orange Regional Medical Center in Middletown.
He is currently listed in critical condition. An investigation into the construction accident remains ongoing at this time.
Liability In Kiryas Joel Window Fall Accidents
Falls remain one of the leading causes of injury and death in the construction industry. According to OSHA, “Out of 4,779 worker fatalities in private industry in calendar year 2018, 1,008 or 21.1% were in construction — that is, one in five worker deaths last year were in construction. The leading causes of private sector worker deaths (excluding highway collisions) in the construction industry were falls, followed by struck by object, electrocution, and caught-in/between.” Falls are so deadly that it is part of what OSHA has labeled the “fatal four” causes of workplace injury and death. There are a number of measures that can be taken in order to prevent falls:
- Companies should guard every floor hole where a worker can walk
- Companies should provide guard rails and toe boards over elevated open sided platforms
- Companies should provide workers with personal fall arrest systems (PFAS) when they are elevated at 6 feet or above
- Companies should properly train employers about how to safely work on elevated surfaces
General contractors and building owners are held strictly liable for gravity related accidents under New York Labor Law 240(1). This includes accidents where a worker either falls or is hit by falling objects. According to NY Labor Law 240(1), “All contractors and owners and their agents, except owners of one and two-family dwellings who contract for but do not direct or control the work, in the erection, demolition, repairing, altering, painting, cleaning or pointing of a building or structure shall furnish or erect, or cause to be furnished or erected for the performance of such labor, scaffolding, hoists, stays, ladders, slings, hangers, blocks, pulleys, braces, irons, ropes, and other devices which shall be so constructed, placed and operated as to give proper protection to a person so employed.” Victims of fall accidents tend to suffer very serious injuries including:
- Broken bones
- Sprained ankles or wrists
- Knee damage
- Shoulder dislocations or muscle strains
- Spine and nerve damage
Any person that is injured in a construction accident may have legal recourse through a bodily injury claim. Damages can help cover lost wages, medical bills, disability benefits and pain and suffering. Many accident victims may not realize the full extent of their injuries until several weeks or months after an accident. It’s important to continue to seek follow up care after an accident. A construction accident attorney can examine all of the facts of your case and let you know what your legal options are.
Investigating A Kiryas Joel Construction Accident
We at Pulvers, Pulvers & Thompson extend our thoughts and prayers to Ricardo Martinez and his family as he continues to recover. Any person that may have seen what happened should reach out to OSHA as they continue their investigation. This was a preventable tragedy that should not have happened. General contractors should be providing their workers with personal fall arrest systems. There needs to be some accountability for what happened. Beyond that, measures should be put in place to help ensure that this does not happen again.