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Defendant Liable For Failing to Catch Falling Object

January 5, 2012

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In <i>Mulvihill v. Brooklyn Law School</i>, the construction worker plaintiff was struck by falling wood pieces that were being used to support a concrete superstructure. The plaintiff sued alleging various Labor Law violations. The defendants moved for summary judgment seeking dismissal of the Labor Law § 240(1) claim arguing that the wooden pieces that fell were not being hoisted or secured and did not fall because of the absence of a safety device. The plaintiff cross-moved for partial summary judgment arguing that liability in cases such as this is not limited to instances where the object is being actively hoisted or secured at the time it falls. The court granted plaintiff partial summary judgment, holding that the defendants’ failure to utilize a safety device to catch the falling wood was the proximate cause of plaintiff's injury.
Thanks to Edward Lomena for his contribution to this post.
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