New York City's construction industry racked up its seventh death of the year last week, according to a report in the Daily News, putting the city on a pace to exceed last year's fatality rate (see: "Manhattan construction worker who fell to death is 7th NYC site fatality of 2015," by Thomas Tracy. "Juan Cerezo, 30, of the Bronx, was working on the 14th floor facade of the Sherman Towers on E. 76th St. near First Ave. at 4:30 p.m. Tuesday [September 1] when he plummeted onto a second-floor scaffolding," the paper reported. "He died at New York-Presbyterian Hospital, according to officials."
In another incident, a masonry retaining wall collapsed and killed 19-year-old Fernando Vanegas. According to the New York Times, Vanegas had told family of his fears about safety on the jobsite (see: "Worker Who Died in Wall Collapse Warned of Problems at Construction Site," by Benjamin Mueller and Joshua Jamerson). Reports the Times: "A retaining wall designed to hold back soil around the base of a building where he was working had almost fallen, the man, Fernando Vanegas, had reported. His mother, Enma Ulloa, said it was one in a steady drumbeat of worries he had shared about safety at the construction site in Brooklyn, where a one-story commercial building was being converted into a five-story structure with some residential units."
Vanegas' death, along with the death of 30-year-old Angel Muños from a fall in an elevator shaft in Hell's Kitchen, brought the yearly total to nine deaths, according to a Daily News editorial (see: "Casualties of work as a construction boom turns deadly"). The paper summed up its view in two words: "No mas."