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Justice After New York Steel Structure Failures

As towering edifices dominate the New York skyline, the dangers associated with steel structure failures are ever-present. The catastrophic events involving steel structure collapse pose a threat of injuries and fatalities to workers and other individuals who may be present in their vicinity. 

There is a pressing need for strong legal advocacy in the aftermath of such devastating incidents. At the Law Offices of Michael S. Lamonsoff, our New York steel structure collapse attorneys are ready to navigate the complexities of these cases, seeking justice and compensation for the victims injured due to steel structure collapses.

New York Laws on Steel Structure Collapse Injuries and Deaths

Duty of Care and Liability

Relevant Statutes: New York imposes a duty of care on property owners and construction entities to maintain safe structures under various statutes such as NY Code - RCO § 27-127.

Negligence Claims: Victims can pursue legal action based on negligence, establishing that the collapse resulted from a breach of the duty of care owed by the responsible parties.

Strict Liability in Certain Cases

NY Code - LAB § 240: Known as the "Scaffold Law," this statute imposes strict liability on contractors and property owners for certain gravity-related injuries, potentially applicable in steel structure collapse cases.

Workers' Compensation

NY Workers' Compensation Law: Injured workers may be eligible for compensation through the workers' compensation system, which provides benefits irrespective of fault.

Wrongful Death Actions

NY Estates, Powers & Trusts Law § 5-4.1: Family members of individuals who succumb to injuries in a steel structure collapse can pursue wrongful death claims for financial and non-economic damages.

Statute of Limitations

NY CPLR Article 2: New York imposes time constraints for filing lawsuits in steel structure collapse claims. The statute of limitations varies based on the type of claim and parties involved.

Product Liability

NY General Obligations Law Article 11: If a defective steel component contributes to the collapse, victims may explore product liability claims against manufacturers and suppliers.

Legal Recourse for Property Damage

NY Real Property Actions and Proceedings Law: Property owners facing damages due to a steel structure collapse may pursue legal action for compensation.

OSHA Regulations to Prevent Steel Structure Collapses: Safeguarding Workplaces

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) plays a pivotal role in establishing and enforcing regulations to ensure the safety and well-being of workers in the construction industry, particularly concerning steel structures. Let us look at the OSHA regulations aimed at preventing steel structure collapses and fostering a secure working environment in New York.

General Duty Clause

OSHA's General Duty Clause asserts that employers must provide a workplace free from recognized hazards that could cause serious harm or death. This includes implementing measures to prevent steel structure collapses by addressing design flaws, construction errors, and other potential risks.

Structural Stability

OSHA regulations emphasize the importance of ensuring structural stability during construction. This involves proper engineering, adherence to design specifications, and the use of materials that meet specified standards to prevent collapses.

Competent Person Requirement

OSHA requires the designation of a competent person responsible for identifying and addressing safety hazards. This includes overseeing the construction of steel structures to prevent issues related to design, engineering, and construction practices that could lead to collapses.

Training and Education

OSHA regulations emphasize the importance of adequately training workers involved in steel structure construction. This includes imparting knowledge on recognizing and mitigating potential hazards to prevent structural failures.

Emergency Action Plans

OSHA requires the development of emergency action plans that include procedures for responding to potential structural failures. This ensures a swift and organized response in the event of an emergency to minimize harm.

Fall Protection Standards

Construction workers involved in steel structure assembly often work at elevated heights. OSHA mandates fall protection measures, such as guardrails, safety nets, or personal fall arrest systems, to prevent falls that could lead to structural failures.

Load Capacity Limits

OSHA sets guidelines on load capacities for materials and structures. Employers must ensure that loads imposed during construction activities do not exceed the designed capacity of the steel structure, reducing the risk of overloading and potential collapse.

Regular Inspections

OSHA mandates regular inspections of construction sites to identify and rectify potential hazards promptly. Inspections are crucial in ensuring that steel structures are built according to approved plans and that any deviations are addressed promptly.

Fall Hazard Assessments

Before commencing work on steel structures, employers are required to conduct fall hazard assessments. This involves evaluating the work environment to identify potential fall hazards and implementing appropriate safeguards.


Employers are obligated to maintain records of safety training, inspections, and any corrective actions taken. This documentation helps demonstrate compliance with OSHA regulations and facilitates ongoing safety improvements.

By adhering to these OSHA regulations, employers in the construction industry can significantly reduce the risk of steel structure collapses, fostering a safer working environment for construction workers and promoting the structural integrity of projects in New York.

Types of Negligent Parties Our Lawyers can Hold Liable for Steel Structure Collapse Accidents in New York

  • Contractors and Construction Companies: Construction companies and contractors overseeing the project can be held liable if they failed to adhere to safety regulations, implemented poor construction practices, or neglected proper supervision.
  • Architects and Engineers: Design professionals, including architects and engineers, may be responsible for steel structure collapses if design flaws or engineering errors contributed to the failure. Our lawyers will assess their designs and specifications to determine liability.
  • Manufacturers of Defective Materials: If the collapse resulted from the use of defective steel or construction materials, the manufacturers can be held liable. Our legal team will investigate the quality and integrity of the materials used in the structure.
  • Property Owners: Property owners can be deemed negligent if they failed to maintain the structural integrity of the building or neglected necessary repairs, contributing to the collapse. Our lawyers will scrutinize the property owner's responsibilities and actions.
  • Subcontractors: Subcontractors involved in specific construction tasks may share liability if their work directly contributed to the collapse. Our lawyers will identify subcontractors responsible for critical aspects of the project.
  • Inspection and Testing Services: Parties responsible for inspecting and testing the steel structure during and after construction may be held liable if their assessments were inadequate or if they failed to identify potential risks. Our legal team will evaluate inspection records and testing protocols.
  • Project Managers: Project managers overseeing the construction process may be held accountable for negligence if they fail to address safety concerns, properly supervise workers, or ensure compliance with industry standards.
  • Regulatory Compliance Entities: Entities responsible for regulatory compliance, such as local building departments, may face liability if they failed to enforce safety regulations or overlooked violations that contributed to the collapse. Our lawyers will assess regulatory adherence.
  • Maintenance and Repair Contractors: If the collapse occurred due to a lack of maintenance or improper repairs, contractors hired for maintenance tasks can be held liable. Our legal team will investigate the history of maintenance work on the structure.
  • Employers: Employers of workers involved in the construction process may share liability for steel structure collapses if they failed to provide proper training, safety equipment, or a secure working environment. Our lawyers will assess employer responsibilities.

Our NYC steel structure collapse lawyers are dedicated to thoroughly investigating steel structure collapse accidents in New York, identifying all negligent parties, and pursuing just compensation for victims.

Types of Evidence Our Steel Structure Collapse Attorneys in New York will Collect to Prove Liability of the Defendants

Proving liability in steel structure collapse cases requires a comprehensive collection of evidence to establish the negligence of the defendants:

  • Construction Plans and Designs: We will examine the original construction plans and designs to assess whether they adhere to safety standards and regulations. Discrepancies or flaws in these documents can indicate design-related negligence.
  • Engineering Reports: Our attorneys will obtain engineering reports detailing the structural integrity of the steel components. Any findings of design flaws, material defects, or construction errors will be crucial evidence in establishing liability.
  • Building Permits and Inspection Records: We will scrutinize building permits and inspection records to determine if the construction project complied with all necessary regulations. Non-compliance or oversight can contribute to the defendants' negligence.
  • Construction Contracts and Agreements: Examination of contracts between various parties involved in the construction project can reveal the allocation of responsibilities. Any breaches of contractual obligation can contribute to establishing liability.
  • Material Testing Records: Our legal team will review records of material testing to assess the quality and suitability of the steel used in the structure. Evidence of substandard materials can be pivotal in proving liability.
  • Maintenance and Repair Logs: If the collapse is attributed to a lack of maintenance or improper repairs, we will gather maintenance and repair logs to demonstrate negligence. Inadequate upkeep can lead to liability on the part of property owners or maintenance contractors.
  • Worksite Safety Protocols: We will investigate whether the construction site adhered to proper safety protocols and whether workers were adequately trained and equipped. Violations of safety regulations can contribute to the defendants' liability.
  • Surveillance Footage: If available, surveillance footage from the construction site can provide visual evidence of any negligent actions or safety violations. This can be particularly useful in establishing the sequence of events leading to the collapse.
  • Expert Testimonies: Our legal team will consult with expert witnesses, such as structural engineers and construction safety specialists, to provide professional opinions on the cause of the collapse and the defendants' negligence.
  • Eyewitness Statements: Gathering statements from eyewitnesses who observed the construction process, or the collapse can provide valuable firsthand accounts. Their testimonies can help establish the negligence of the defendants.
  • Defendant Communication Records: If there is evidence of communication between parties involved in the construction project, such as emails or memos, we will review these records to identify any acknowledgments of negligence or safety concerns.
  • Worker Testimonies: Statements from workers involved in the construction process can offer insights into potential safety violations, inadequate training, or other factors contributing to the collapse.

Our dedicated attorneys are committed to building a strong case on your behalf by meticulously collecting and presenting the evidence necessary to prove the liability of the defendants in steel structure collapse incidents. 

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