Our client was employed as a union bridge painter working on a project in the Bronx at the pedestrian bridge spanning the Henry Hudson Parkway. Our client was a member in good standing of Local 806 Bridge and Structural Steel Painters and was working an overnight shift. He went to work and expected to be given the proper safety equipment to do his job. He expected to be able to return home to his family safely. Instead, the decision of the Defendant general contractor to rush the work and deny him basic safety equipment resulted in serious damage.
The project involved sandblasting down to white metal, removal of lead paint and removal of all protective coating down to bare steel and a complete repainting of the bridge structure. When our client arrived to work he was assigned the task of preparing the bridge for containment because of lead paint and to begin the removal process necessary, so the bridge could ultimately be repainted. This work required him to be at heights of approximately ten feet or higher yet he was not given any safety device (such as a ladder) to perform the work. Despite asking for a ladder he was told to just climb and scale the fence along the bridge to do the work. The bridge had a wrought iron fence coupled with a taller steel fence alongside.
Since he was given no safety device to work at this elevation, he was forced to climb and scale the wrought iron fence in an attempt to drape tarp to contain the work area because of lead paint. Without any ladder, scaffold, or other safety device, he was forced climb and scale the fence to place the tarp over the work area for containment. After placing the tarp in place he attempted to descend back to ground level. He was on top of a wrought iron fence which was about 5 feet off of the ground level and was standing upright (at over six feet tall) putting his elevation over 10 feet. While attempting to descend, with no safety device, he fell and violently crashed to the ground below.
Our client suffered injuries to his neck, back, and arm and could not return to work. The bills to support his family became overwhelming. He turned to another law firm but they were not equipped to take on his fight. We made sure that our client got the care he needed and was protected. We were successful in defeating the defenses that he was somehow at fault or that his injuries were pre-existing conditions. We ultimately were successful in court and recovered $5,000,000 for our client.