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New York City law aims to promote worker safety

In 2017, there were nearly 700 injuries related to construction accidents in New York City according to the Department of Buildings. Furthermore, there were 12 worker deaths in 645 accidents reported during that year throughout the city. Local Law 196 was signed into law in October 2017 and went into effect on March 1. It says that there needs to be a site safety plan as well as adequate worker safety training on job sites.

Workers are required to receive up to 55 hours of training with supervisors required to have up to 75 hours of training. After training has been completed, a safety card is issued that lasts for up to five years. Site owners or employers of workers who are not properly trained could be fined up to $5,000 per each untrained worker. If trained worker logs are not properly kept, it can result in additional fines of $2,500.

Workers are exempt from training requirements if they are making only minor changes to a building or are working on construction of homes that are designed to house three or fewer families. Those who are working as delivery or flag persons are also exempt from the new training requirements as well as safety or engineering professionals. The requirement will be phased in between March 2018 and September 2020.

Accidents that occur on construction sites can result in significant injury and time away from work. Those who are injured in workplace accidents may be entitled to a portion of their salaries as well as payment for their medical bills related to the accident. If a worker is not able to return to work, he or she might be entitled to permanent benefits. An attorney may assist a worker in seeking compensation.