In May of this year, city Buildings Commissioner Patricia Lancaster told The Observer‘s Matthew Schuerman that she wouldn’t be satisfied until there were no more construction-related deaths in New York City.
Well, I would say if one person dies, it’s too many. We have been more proactive than in the history of the agency in my administration, but we will continue until the deaths are down to zero.
The agency’s getting there. The Buildings Department this morning released its annual safety report card, and it showed a 43 percent drop in construction-related deaths–from 14 the year before to eight in 2007 through Oct. 31. At the same time, however, the number of construction-related injuries stayed constant–105 vs. 104 this year.
High-rise construction has been much more dangerous for construction workers than low-rise, according to the report card. Accidents on high-rise construction sites increased this year from 23 to 42. On low-rise sites, they decreased, from 66 to 51.