Weather Advisories Warn NYC Building Sites Must Be Secured

The third severe weather advisory of the summer from the city's Department of Buildings listed eight proactive steps to take for construction sites and five for buildings.

New York City's Department of Buildings yesterday posted its third advisory of the summer about severe weather, reminding builders, contractors, and property owners to secure their construction sites and buildings and notifying them the department's spot-check inspections of construction sites would be followed by enforcement action, and Stop Work Orders if necessary, if a site is not safely secured.

DOB issued similar advisories on June 30 and July 31.

"These gusts of high wind may reach higher wind speeds than forecasted depending on the area of New York City," today's said. "Property owners must consider the safety of their buildings and construction sites, cranes, suspended and supported scaffolding, hoists, and any other building appurtenances that may come loose from exposure to high winds. Structures that have been subject to deferred maintenance or are in delicate condition could be at greater risk. The Buildings Department strongly suggests consulting a professional to advise how to safely secure construction sites and buildings.

"To secure construction sites, builders, contractors and developers should take all precautionary measures including but not limited to the following:

  • Tie down and secure material and loose debris at construction sites.
  • Cover electrical equipment from exposure to the weather.
  • Store loose tools, oil cans, and extra fuses in a tool box.
  • Secure netting, scaffolding, and sidewalk sheds.
  • Suspend crane operations and secure crane equipment when wind speeds reach 30 mph or greater.
  • Suspend hoist operations and secure exterior hoists when wind speeds reach 35 mph or greater, unless manufacturer specifications state otherwise.
  • Brace and secure construction fences.
  • Call 911 if there is an emergency on a construction site.

To secure a building, property owners should take all precautionary measures, including but not limited to the following:

  • Bring inside loose, lightweight objects such as lawn furniture, potted plants, garbage cans, garden tools, and toys.
  • Anchor objects that would be unsafe outside, such as gas grills or propane tanks.
  • Close up and secure patio umbrellas.
  • Secure retractable awnings.
  • Remove aerial antennas and satellite television dishes."

The advisory asked New Yorkers to call 311 to report non-compliant conditions or 911 to report emergencies at construction sites or buildings.

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