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Region 2 News Release: 08-839-NEW/BOS 2008-181
Mon., June 23, 2008
Contact: Ted Fitzgerald
Phone: 617-565-2074

U.S. Labor Department's OSHA takes extra steps to combat New York City construction hazards
Rise in city construction deaths and accidents 'unacceptable'

NEW YORK -- The U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) is taking new steps to combat the rise in construction fatalities in New York City, where 20 employees have died in construction-related accidents since January.

For two weeks beginning today, OSHA is bringing a dozen additional inspectors into the city to conduct proactive inspections of high-rise construction sites, cranes and other places where fatalities and serious accidents have been occurring. Additionally, ongoing inspections will continue under existing local emphasis programs, or as a result of complaints, referrals or accidents.

OSHA will review its findings to gauge the impact of these additional inspections and determine what other steps might need to be taken to address this deadly trend.

"There is no one - among regulators, employers, employees, unions and trade associations - who will accept these lost lives as the byproduct of work in a dangerous industry," said Louis Ricca Jr., OSHA's acting regional administrator in New York. "We must all commit to maintaining safety as the number one job priority each and every day."