Thanks in part to new safety laws and tougher enforcement of existing safety codes, construction-related accidents were down 18% in New York in 2011.  Building Commissioner Robert LiMandri announced the statistics at the end of January along with a variety of other impressive safety statistics for the NY construction industry.
For the first time in 40 years, the NYS construction codes were revised in 2008.  They established 25 safety laws, from banning smoking on all construction sites to uniform inspections of sprinkler systems.  The results of these safety codes are being seen with decreases in death and injuries on construction sites.
Some of the most notable statistics:

  •  There was a 21% decrease in falls on work sites, great news since 1/3 of all construction site accidents are falls.
  • There was an increase of new construction permits of 7.7%, showing that with even more construction going on, injuries were decreasing.
  • The 5 construction fatalities in 2011 occurred because of improper construction practices or lack of fall protection – this can be corrected and prevented in the future.
  • Fatalities on job sites dropped 73% since 2008

The building commissioner also sites increased cooperation between construction companies, inspectors, engineers, architects, and lawyers in the decline of worker falls and accidents.  Mr. LiMandri also noted that the decline in accidents shows that those in the industry take work related accidents seriously.  Growth and construction has to occur but there is no reason it can’t be done safely.