The Real Deal New York

Harco, Sky Materials charged in Restoration Hardware site worker death

Manhattan DA also announces new construction safety task force
August 06, 2015 08:00AM

Two construction firms were charged Wednesday with manslaughter, negligent homicide and reckless endangerment in relation to the April death of a worker at the site of the new Restoration Hardware store in the Meatpacking District.

Harco Construction and Sky Materials Corp. are accused of ignoring complaints from workers asking them to shore up deep trenches dug for foundation work at the Restoration Hardware site, at 9-19 Ninth Avenue.

Carlos Moncayo died April 6 at the age of 22 while working one trench, an unsecured 14-foot-deep excavation pit. A wall gave way and crushed Moncayo under thousands of pounds of dirt just moments after he and three coworkers were ordered out of the trench at the urging of a safety inspector, according to Crain’s.

While regulations stipulate that any pit deeper than five feet must be secured, Harco and Sky Materials repeatedly ignored such warnings by independent safety inspectors hired to oversee the site, according to Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance Jr.

In addition to the charges, Vance announced the formation of a task force that will look into safety conditions at construction sites around the city. [Crain’s]Rey Mashayekhi