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Following a rise in construction deaths and injuries in New York City, new laws intended to protect construction workers have been proposed by the city’s Building Commissioner. Construction accident injuries have rised 63 percent since 2006. New regulations include registering of concrete contractors and changing which projects require a safety manager. Currently a builiding must be 15 stories or 200 feet before one is required. The proposed law lowers the height to 10 floors or 150 feet.

“The construction industry in general and concrete operations in particular, need more regulation,” Commissioner Patricia Lancaster said a City Council committee hearing on Housing and Buildings today. “The number of accidents reported at high-rises is growing faster than the number of sites themselves.”

Two contractors were killed last month One in a scaffolding fall and the other in a 40-story fall after freshly poured concrete gave way. The head of the New York Building Trades Employers’ Association of unionized construction contractors is asking for even more regulations to protect workers. He says that the highest number of accidents is occuring in low-rise buildings.

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