Worker Killed on Arena Roof Project


Authorities are investigating the death of a New York construction worker who was crushed by steel beams Tuesday (Feb. 24) while installing a green roof at the Barclays Center Arena in Brooklyn.

The 52-year-old ironworker suffered cardiac arrest and died after being struck by steel joists that rolled off a delivery truck about 1:30 p.m., according to reports.

Authorities had not released the worker's identity as of Wednesday afternoon. The victim was an employee of Massachusetts-based James F. Stearns Company. Stearns is a subcontractor for Bankers Steel, which is working with Hunt Construction Group, the construction manager on the green roof project.

The companies directed media to the developer, Greenland Forest City Ratner Partners, which offered condolences in a statement.

The Accident

Emergency crews responded at 1:33 p.m. to the accident on the Atlantic Yards mega-development site.

The worker was found lying on a loading dock, where he was pronounced dead, reports said.

He had been struck by as many as four beams that slid off a truck before they could be fastened to a crane to hoist them into place, according to the Brooklyn Paper.

Investigation Launched

Construction has been halted on the project while police and city agencies investigate, reports say.

It is unclear whether federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration officials have launched their own investigation; an area spokesman did not respond Wednesday to a request for more information.

green roof
© / Maxvis

The green roof is intended to beautify the stadium and muffle event noise, according to a local paper. The image does not show the green roof in this case.

OSHA records of the contractor's history were unavailable Wednesday.

Developer Statement

“We are all devastated by what happened,” the developer said in an e-mailed statement.

“All of us at Greenland Forest City Ratner Partners and Barclays Center extend our most heartfelt condolences to the worker’s family and friends,” said spokesman Joe DePlasco.

The company said it was working with investigators to determine the cause of the accident.

Green Roof Project

Construction on the arena’s green roof began in the fall, reports say.

“The project is supposed to beautify the stadium and muffle noise from high-decibel events held there,” according to the Brooklyn Paper.

The Barclays Center Arena, designed by AECOM and SHoP Architects, is the home of the NBA's Brooklyn Nets (formerly, the Jersey Nets).


Tagged categories: Accidents; Building Envelope; Construction; Fatalities; Green design; Green roofs; North America; Stadiums/Sports Facilities; Steel

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