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Status Update: 2021 NYC Construction Safety Report Tracks Site Safety Progress

In March 2022, the NYC DOB released their second-annual Construction Safety Report, compiling site safety data from 2021 and comparing it against 2020 statistics.

While it can be difficult to compare 2020 to 2021, considering the major slowdown on NYC construction due to the Covid-19 pandemic, there are still some important revelations in the report that may impact projects going forward.

For example, despite the ramp-up of construction in 2021, the number of construction-related incidents still went down 10% from that of 2020. The passage of multiple site safety measures, plus the Safety Sweep that took place during Summer 2021, could account for this. But despite the decrease in incidents overall, nine construction-related deaths occurred in 2021, seven of which occurred before the Safety Sweep.

This could mean, should number of site safety incidents uptick in the future, that another round of zero-tolerance inspections could occur. Considering that last year’s sweeps resulted in 3,666 violation notices, site managers should make sure to keep on the right side of those site safety requirements to avoid penalties in the future.

On the note of violations, the number of construction safety violations issued by the DOB jumped up by nearly 10,000 in 2021. This may be attributed in part to the sweeps and general ramp up in construction. However, when added to the new site safety laws passed late last year that redefines what counts as a major building and increased site safety requirements for them (also outlined in the report), hundreds more projects may fall in the crosshairs of this notably more vigilant Department of Buildings.

The report also discussed the department’s plans to further site safety in 2022, which include strengthening Site Safety Training (SST) requirements for certain more complex projects.

As only the second-annual report of its kind, the 2021 Construction Safety Report should make building owners and site managers mindful of the DOB’s increased vigilance so that they may better to protect their workers and avoid violations.

For assistance resolving existing violations, and for all other code-related inquiries, please reach out to the experts at Outsource Consultants



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