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Scaffolding Failure Blamed for Workers' Falls

Two window washers were stranded on the 45th floor of the Hearst Tower recently after their scaffolding broke down and buckled into a “V,” reports NBC New York. In a 90-minute rescue, the men were guided safely inside the building and did not require medical care.

The loss of power of the scaffold’s middle motor may have led to the collapse. The scene was reminiscent of a 2007 Upper East Side fall accident involving two brothers working as window washers. One died and the other was seriously injured after their scaffolding fell beneath them, 47 stories to the ground.

In the 2007 accident, NBC pointed out, the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration issued citations to the company that maintained the scaffolding equipment. A year later, the state cited the company in a scaffold collapse on East 66th Street.

The city Department of Buildings and the state Department of Labor were investigating the most recent scaffolding failure.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, scaffolding falls accounted for 45 of the 646 work-related fatal falls that occurred in 2010.

If you or a family member has been injured on the job because of faulty equipment, contact the New York City personal injury law firm of David Resnick & Associates, P.C., to see if you have a right to compensation.

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