Department of Buildings Violations Note Hazardous Conditions and Missing Safety Manager

An early track-record of unsafe and hazardous conditions during the initial months of construction of 50 Hudson Yards raises concerns about the safety of workers on the site and the possibility that safety incidents could endanger the timely and responsible completion of work.

The Department of Buildings issued a summons to the general contractor at 50 Hudson Yards for its failure to provide adequate guardrails during excavation. Inadequate guardrails exposed workers to a hazardous falling condition of up to 40 feet. The inspection revealed that guardrails were not fully connected, moved when touched, and were not the required height.

The Department of Buildings inspector also found that during excavation there were not adequate means of egress at 50 Hudson Yards.  The inspector described one narrow path as blocked with “an obstacle course” of machinery, equipment and debris.  Furthermore, during the inspection, both the site safety manager and his alternate were not present and were cited for failing to maintain adequate safety logs. In the next inspection, 50 Hudson Yards’ general contractor was again found in violation during the excavation, this time for failing to conform to the NYC Fire Code.

In a separate incident, a truck reportedly backed into a fire hydrant at 50 Hudson Yards. Calls to the New York City Department of Environmental Protection on the afternoon of August 6th, 2018 describe a “fire hydrant in full blast” at 50 Hudson Yards’ 10th Avenue side with “water shooting everywhere” and the site “unable to turn the water off.” According to a witness, water flooded the site and softened the ground in the surrounding area. An inspection later that day by the Water Maintenance Unit found a hydrant with a “broken valve” that was then put out of service.

Hours later, a pedestrian was injured when his leg became stuck in a hole outside 50 Hudson Yards in proximity to where the reported flooding had taken place. According to a witness, the pedestrian’s leg went “straight through” the ground that had been softened due to the fire hydrant incident earlier that day. Work-site safety is paramount to protect all, both on and off the site.  

PHOTO: A pedestrian’s leg lodged in potential sink hole at 50 Hudson Yards.