Window Washing Injuries & Falls from Heights

As you might imagine, window washers are prone to a great deal of accidents. This is because window washers work at high altitudes, doing risky work. Many window washing accidents and deaths are caused by faulty or insufficient safety devices. Building owners that employ window washers can be liable for failure to equip these workers properly.

Rainy and snowy days shall be paid for. Window cleaners shall perform work reasonably assigned to them on rainy and snow days. Window cleaners shall not be required to work on a sill on which there remains an accumulation of snow or ice or other slippery substance.

It is agreed that no window cleaner shall be required to work on or carry more than three pieces of ladders and that no less than two window cleaners shall be sent on a job requiring the use of more than three pieces of ladder aggregating eighteen feet or more in length. Under no circumstances, shall any window cleaner be required to work on a job calling for more than six pieces of ladder aggregating thirty-one feet in length.

Despite regulatory reform efforts in 2016 aimed at reducing fall-related fatalities, the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) continues to issue more citations for fall protection violations than any other category. This evidence suggests that employers can do more to prevent falls at work. To increase adherence to fall protection guidelines, OSHA partnered with the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) and the National Occupational Research Agency (NORA) to create a three-point plan for preventing falls: plan, provide, and train.

Estimating the cost of a job is often the first step in any work project. If the job involves working six feet or more above the ground, employers should carefully assess the cost of safety equipment needed to make sure it is done safely, and a clear plan for how tasks will be accomplished at various heights. Safety equipment must be available from Day One on the job site. This may include ladders, scaffolds, platforms or lifts, and personal fall arrest systems, such as harnesses.

Employers should make sure all equipment is inspected before use and harnesses are properly sized for the workers using them. Make sure workers are thoroughly trained on how to set up and use fall protection equipment. Employers should also consider creating a schedule to regularly review the effectiveness of fall safety procedures.

More than 15 percent of worker deaths are due to falls and one in three construction worker fatalities occur as a result of falling. In addition to the tragic loss of life, falls in the workplace incur a huge economic price tag. Medical bills and Workers’ Compensation payments total more than $70 billion annually in the U.S., according to estimates. When an injured employee misses work due to a fall injury, another employee may have to be trained to complete the project.

Remember, each case is unique, so contact HURT-511 for more information on workers’ comp statute and our personal injury lawyers help injured workers recover the benefits to which they are entitled by law. For a free consultation with an experienced workers’ compensation lawyer, call us toll-free at 800-4878-511 or complete our online form. Our firm handles accident and injury claims throughout all five boroughs of New York.

HURT-511 operates in all boroughs of New York including all Bronx neighborhoods, namely: Bedford Park, Belmont, Fordham, Highbridge, Hunts Point, Jerome Park, Kingsbridge, Morris Park, Morrisania, Mott Haven, Parkchester, Riverdale, Spuyten Duyvil, Throgs Neck, University Heights and Woodlawn.