Matter of 91st St. Crane Collapse Litig.

133 A.D.3d 478 (1st Dept. 2015) November 12, 2015

The plaintiff, who ran outside of his work shanty when he heard a loud bang, tripped and fell over a tool. He then continued outside, running toward the crane to see what occurred. The court dismissed his Labor Law §240(1) claim on the basis that his injury was so attenuated that it cannot be reasonably connected to the crane’s collapse. The court held that the plaintiff did, however, have a viable §246(1) cause of action based on an alleged violation of 12 NYCRR 23-1.7(e)(2), which requires that working areas be kept free from scattered tools.

Practice Note: To succeed on a Labor Law §240(1) claim, the incident cannot be of such an extraordinary nature or so attenuated from the statutory violation to constitute a superseding cause.

Topics: Application of Labor Law; Causation; Industrial Code Violations