In yet another victory for g + b’s clients, Partner Jessica Price was able to utilize plaintiff’s deposition testimony to create a question of fact and defeat plaintiff’s motion seeking summary judgment on a Labor Law Section 240(1) claim.

Plaintiff, an electrician, was roughing out office space. On the date of his accident, plaintiff was running cables with a drag line through hangers in the ceiling. He did not intend to use a ladder for this task and had been working for an hour without one. As plaintiff ran the cables, tension was created on the wires. A ladder was nearby, so plaintiff checked it, saw it was in working condition, and utilized it to gain leverage. As he was standing on the ladder, plaintiff pulled the drag line but the wires recoiled, pulling the plaintiff and causing a shoulder injury as the ladder allegedly wobbled on one of its footings. Plaintiff testified at deposition that he could have pre-rolled the wires to alleviate the tension, but this would have been “a lot of work” as it would require walking back and forth from where the cable reel was located to where the wires needed to be pulled.

Ms Price argued that the proximate cause of plaintiff’s accident was his failure to pre-roll the wires, not any deficiency with the ladder. The Court agreed, and denied plaintiff’s motion. In doing so, the Court held that a jury must determine whether the proximate cause of plaintiff’s injury was the ladder, the failure to pre-roll the wires, or gravity related issues caused by the weight of the cables.

Believing victory to be assured, plaintiff did not oppose g + b’s cross-motion to dismiss his other claims under Labor Law Sections 200 and 241(6). As such, the Court dismissed those causes of action entirely.