The Real Deal New York

Another construction accident at SL Green’s One Vanderbilt site leaves two injured

One of the workers is reportedly in critical condition

July 24, 2015 02:17PM
By Ariel Stulberg & James Kleimann

The scene at 317 Madison Avenue (Credit: @MDiamond8 via Twitter)

The scene at 317 Madison Avenue (Credit: @MDiamond8 via Twitter)

UPDATED, 5:30 p.m., July 24: Two construction workers were injured this morning while performing demolition work at SL Green Realty’s 317 Madison Avenue. The property lies on the site of SL Green’s upcoming One Vanderbilt tower, and it’s the second construction accident since work began in March. 

A mesh and plaster wall that hung from a ceiling workers had been removing fell on the laborers just after 10 a.m., a spokesman for the Department of Buildings told The Real Deal.

The force of the collapse caused the workers to fall about six feet from scaffolding, the spokesman said. The men were rushed to Bellevue Hospital, with what fire officials described as serious but not life-threatening injuries. Officials said that one man sustained a shoulder injury, while the other suffered an injury to the thigh.

John Gallagher, a spokesman for Tishman Construction, which is overseeing site work, described the injuries as “minor” and said the wounded workers would be released from the hospital today.

Gallagher disputed the city’s claim that the ceiling had “collapsed,” but refused to address questions on how the incident unfolded. He did not respond when asked if a safety manager was present.

The contractor will fined for “failure to safeguard all persons and property during construction operations,” the buildings department said.

Officials from Waldorf Demolition, which has been gutting the building, did not return requests for comment.

The 22-story office building, also known as 33-49 East 42nd Street, was purchased by the REIT in May. The building is one of five in the process of being demolished to make way for the firm’s proposed One Vanderbilt development, a skyscraper that would rise 1,500 feet above Grand Central Station. SL Green recently received approval to rezone the five-block area surrounding Vanderbilt Avenue near the iconic transit center.

In April, four construction workers were injured at another property that is part of the development site, 331 Madison Avenue.