Firefighters are true heroes. While most of us run out of burning buildings, firefighters do the opposite. They run towards the danger, working to save lives and protect property. Cities and towns across Long Island are safer because of the work of our firefighters.
Unfortunately, firefighters are often injured in the line of duty. Rushing into a house is on fire can lead to injuries, or even death. In these situations, firefighters can turn to a for help in filing a lawsuit based on their injuries. For firefighters killed at work, their survivors may be able to file a wrongful death lawsuit on their behalf.
A New York law establishes a framework for when firefighters can file a lawsuit for on-the-job injuries. Otherwise, firefighters are limited to workers’ compensation and other benefits to cover their losses.
Under , firefighters or their families have the right to file a lawsuit and seek recovery for their damages when they suffer injuries or death in the line of duty. Under this law, a claim can only proceed if the injury or death was the result of a violation of any statute, code, regulation, or rule recognized by the jurisdiction where the accident occurred. If the injury or death was sustained in the line of duty and was caused directly or indirectly by any violation that had a “practical or reasonable” connection to the injury, a firefighter can recover for his or her injury.
To recover under section 205-a, a seasonedmust prove that a person or entity violated a federal, state or local law, code or regulation. If this violation directly or indirectly caused an injury or death to the firefighter, the firefighter and/or his or her family could recover for their losses.
In many cases, landlords and building owners are named in section 205-a lawsuits for failing to comply with building codes and fire maintenance statutes. If a building owner fails to install proper emergency exits or sprinkler systems, for example, it not only endangers the building occupants, but the firefighters who respond to the building in the event of a fire.
There are a number of laws that, if violated, could form the basis of a section 205-a lawsuit. This includes the New York State Multiple Dwelling Law, the New York State Vehicle and Traffic Law, the Penal Law, the New York State Labor Law and (in certain situations) the Occupational Safety and Health Act.
The state of New York has a number of laws and regulations that require new and existing buildings to comply with certain safety standards in order to protect against devastating fires.
For example, the Fire Code of New York State mandates that all new buildings have fire alarm and detection systems in all rooms, working carbon monoxide detectors, and automatic sprinkler systems. It also requires that all existing buildings comply with regulations regarding existing elevators, vertical openings, sprinkler systems, smoke and fire alarm systems, exit access stairways and ramps, escalators, and ramps. In addition, all buildings must have fire extinguishers in specified locations throughout the building. A violation of any of these regulations could allow a firefighter to pursue a section 205-a lawsuit.
The New York State Building Code also has certain requirements that impact fire safety. For example, stairways must meet width and capacity requirements, and buildings must have the appropriate number of exits and emergency exits based on their size. Stairways, ramps and aisles must have handrails with appropriate strength, and the building should not have more occupants than its stated occupancy.
These laws and regulations are vital for building safety — and to protect firefighters in the event of a fire. If a firefighter is injured due to a failure of a building owner, landlord, or other person or entity to comply with the law, he or she may be entitled to file a lawsuit. An experiencedcan help.
Firefighters protect our lives and our property — and they deserve our protection when they are hurt or killed in the line of duty. The law firm of Siler & Ingber advocates for firefighters who suffer on-the-job injuries in Long Island and the surrounding areas, working to help them achieve justice and get the compensation that they deserve.
Our law firm is dedicated to helping victims of all types of accidents, including workplace injuries, recover for their losses. We offer free initial consultations, and we never charge a fee unless we recover money for you. Contact us today at 1-516-294-2666, or to schedule an appointment with a seasoned .