Labor Law 10 : Skylights

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Q: My husband’s employer had a contract with a museum to keep its roof in good repair.  Tied to safety ropes, the crew would move counterweights across the roof in order to utilize the ‘swing-stage’ scaffolding.

When it came time to repair the glass skylights, the crew could not utilize the safety rope system since the safety lines did not reach to the area of the skylights.  Instead, the workers would be tied to special cables that the employer had installed and stretched along the skylights.  On the day of my husband’s plunge, for some reason, the special safety cables were not in place.  All the same, my husband performed as his foreman instructed.

OSHA itself concluded that employees on the roof had no protection while moving counterweights over skylights and that other serious violations had taken place at the work site.

A: Labor Law § 240(1) did not require your husband to act in a manner that was completely free from negligence.  So long as a statutory violation was a proximate cause of an injury, the law permits recovery.

By: Scott Baron,
Attorney at Law Advertorial

The law responds to changed conditions; exceptions and variations abound. Here, the information is general; always seek out competent counsel. This article shall not be construed as legal advice.

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