On Tuesday, September 4, 2012, at around 8am, a construction worker was removing part of a building’s façade from 84 Elm Street in Westfield, Massachusetts. While in the midst of performing his duties, the deteriorating brick wall collapsed on him. He and the scissor lift he was standing on both fell backwards. The man’s crash was broken by a car parked in the street.
The owner of the vehicle, James Porier, affirmed that despite the damage to his car, he was happy that it was able to help save a life. Jeffrey Daley, Westfield’s Advancement Officer, echoed Porier’s sentiment, believing that the car probably did prevent further injury to the employee. The trajectory of the lift’s fall was angled in such a way that could have caused much more serious harm. Fortunately, the worker was able to stand and walk around afterwards. According to Police Lieutenant Lawrence Valliere, the man was taken to Noble Hospital with minor injuries.
Daley says the entire block presents hazards to the populace. The city of Westfield owns the building standing next to 84 Elm Street which had become dangerous when bricks began to fall from it during the previous week.
The city is presently in the process of demolishing the building it owns. After the demolition has been completed, Westfield will bolster the wall that abuts 84 Elm Street which is owned by Hampden Bank. The contractor, Salomie Construction, is presently assessing the best approach to the building’s structural issues.
Westfield neither has any say in or knowledge of what Hampden Bank will be doing with its property. But Daley confirmed that the city was scheduled to begin its demolition process this past Wednesday after the needed $125,000 had finally been appropriated.
I don’t know what’s more amazing, that the worker walked away with minor cuts, or that he walked away with minor cuts because a brick wall knocked him into a car. Either way, I’m glad the injuries weren’t significant. But if you or anyone you know have any questions, concerns, or a need for counsel concerning workplace injury please feel free to contact Altman and Altman at your earliest convenience.