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Must Stop Working

In an effort to curtail the recent surge of construction injuries, the DOB has ramped up its stop work order issuances. Stop work order issuances increased three times faster than permit issuances from 2012-2016. Following approved plans and construction safety measures can prevent stop work orders. Project teams lose money when construction is stymied by a stop work order. Getting construction crews back up and running is critical. Here are some tips on how to do so.


As the DOB focuses more on site safety, construction crews must realize there is less latitude to cut corners on construction protocol. Inspectors commonly issue stop work orders for transgressions easily observed. These include the absence of a site safety manager, no plans posted onsite, no superintendent present, using equipment without a license and expired work permit.

Inspectors will look for sloppy construction practice. Some of these include insufficient or missing guardrails, structural compromise, blocked egress, missing elevator, inadequate temporary fire safety system and improper equipment use. An inspector can issue a stop work order if they deem the construction site unsafe for employees. Often inspectors will issue a partial stop work order for a portion of the construction site or even a piece of equipment used improperly.


Time is money on construction sites. Not only do developers lose money when construction stops, but the construction schedule is upset, which can lead to a host of other problems. This is why it’s important to act fast and lift the stop work order as soon as possible.

Lifting a stop work order requires a few steps, the most critical being correction.

Lifting a stop work order requires a few steps, the most critical being correction. Executing correction is going to depend on the violation, as some violations will have a more involved correction than others. An easy correction could be something like posting plans. A much more difficult correction would be amending plans to reflect work. In either case, there is an affidavit to be filed out as well as a revisit from an inspector. Inspectors will typically reinspect a site with a stop work order within 1-3 days. Lifting a stop work order is best performed by an expeditor that can move the process along faster.

Respondents will have to pay any fees related to the stop work order before work can resume. Working against a stop work order is unwise and invites even more violations and fees. Fees for violating a stop work order are $5000 for the first offense, $10,000 for subsequent offenses.

Have a stop work order that needs lifting? Any other violations? Contact us.