One of the accident victims who was seriously injured in last month’s Worth Street crane collapse accident has filed a claim against the city for $30 million in compensation, citing a mixture of carelessness, negligence and recklessness by the city in its control over the crane’s use on that windy day.
The 73-year-old accident victim, Thomas O’Brien, had parked his car on the block where the crane was situated to allow his daughter to get to a doctor’s appointment. It was reported that she was moving to New York and O’Brien was helping her with the move. The crane crashed down right on top of O’Brien’s car just as his daughter was coming out of the door of the clinic.
O’Brien suffered numerous serious wounds, especially to the upper part of the body, including a fracture in his skull and two fractures in his spine. There was other damage done to the arms, back, legs and neck. O’Brien wasn’t the only person affected by the crane collapse. Two others were injured and a man, David Wichs, was killed.
O’Brien’s personal injury lawyer argued that the city’s Department of Buildings could have prevented the injuries if it had heeded the forecast that indicated that winds would reach 40 mph on that day, February 5, 2016.
The injured man’s lawyer said that the claims will be against the crane company, Bay Crane, the contractors, Glasso Transportation and Logistics, the owners of the building where the crane was being used, 60 Hudson, as well as the city’s Department of Buildings.
The accident initially sparked a quick reaction from NYC mayor Bill de Blasio, who said that cranes of the type at Worth Street should be banned from being used if the forecast was for winds of more than 20 mph. The suggestion was that the city might bring in a fine of $10,000 against any company violating the high-wind ban, but that now seems to have been abandoned.
New York has seen far more than its fair share of construction accidents over the last few years, and last month’s crane collapse is yet another reminder that people can be badly hurt when things go wrong on a construction site. Accident victims who are seriously injured in construction site accidents are able to file a lawsuit against a negligent company, but all the money that may be made available in a successful settlement may never bring back people who have been tragically killed or injured for life just because they were in the vicinity of a building or machinery that was not properly maintained or controlled.
If you or a member of your family has been injured badly by an accident in the New York City area and you think that someone else was to blame, then you should contact a personal injury attorney as soon as possible, especially if a government agency shares part of the blame. There is only a limited window of opportunity to file a personal injury lawsuit against any negligent party, and the period is shortest for claims against the government.
Contact Richard S. Jaffe Esq., an experienced and very successful accident attorney for a free consultation at the Law Offices of Cohen & Jaffe LLP, 2001 Marcus Avenue, Suite W295, Lake Success, NY 11042. Phone: 516-358-6900 or toll free: 800-483-6149.