A judge in Manhattan Supreme Court rejected the union of operating engineers’ effort to block the city from implementing the changes to regulations that govern crane operators yesterday, Crain’s reported. The debate over the control of crane operators — who will hire them and how they will be vetted — has been ongoing since the change in Department of Buildings regulations was proposed in February at a public hearing.
The Real Estate Board of New York has shown support for the changes, while the Local 14 of the International Union of Operating Engineers has slammed them as an attempt to reduce labor costs that could endanger the safety of New Yorkers.
Since 2008, a number of cranes on New York City construction sites have collapsed, prompting controversy about practices at construction sites.
The union’s request for a restraining order preventing the rules’ implementation was rebuffed yesterday, but the larger suit against the DOB can proceed. That matter will be decided in August, Crain’s said.
The new rules will reduce the amount of local on-the-job training certain crane operators need to have in order to work in New York City, and will require that operators obtain “certification from a nationally accredited organization.”