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Recent New York Crane Collapse Raises Questions

The March 27 crane collapse at 80 Maiden Lane is a recent example of a number of crane accidents in New York City in the past several years. Although no one was seriously injured, this was not the case in previous accidents: a collapse in March of 2008 destroyed a town house on East 51st Street and killed seven people, while another 2008 collapse on East 91st Street killed two construction workers. Because of the serious threat to safety posed by these accidents, residents are beginning to ask questions about what can be done to prevent them in the future.

In response to the Maiden Lane collapse, authorities suspended crane-operator Christopher Cosban's license. The alleged reason for the collapse was a failure to properly secure the crane after a day's work.

There are several common factors that can lead to crane collapse. Among the most common are errors in crane assembly or dismantling, boom buckling and rigging failure. The biggest problem, however, is failure to properly account for power lines, which causes approximately 40 percent of all crane accidents. As we learned from the Maiden Lane collapse, a simple failure to secure the crane during downtime can lead to devastation, too.

When crane accidents occur, they can be deadly: the Labor Department estimates that there are upwards of 82 fatalities associated with construction cranes annually.

If you or someone you love has been injured in a crane accident, contact an experienced personal injury attorney. A lawyer experienced in handling crane accident cases can provide you with the information you need to protect your rights and seek the compensation you deserve.

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