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What Types of Protective Winter Workwear Do I Need?

Winter weather may be mild so far this year, but that is no excuse to neglect basic cold weather safety. Every employee should be educated about the perils of working in extremely cold weather and prepare accordingly.

Job site supervisors should also vet employee uniforms before the day begins and monitor work habits so that everyone can stay healthy, warm and safe. To help ensure that everyone is dressed for the weather, abide by these cold weather clothing and protection guidelines: Read more

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How to Get a Permit from NYC Department of Buildings

Acquiring a building permit in NYC is far from simple. The high building density and long history of revised standards and regulations requires that every applicant go through a lengthy approval process before the first hammer is swung on a new or remodeled building.

Luckily, the number of steps to keep track of is not overwhelming. Follow the process outlined below to learn more about how you can acquire a NYC building permit from the NYC Department of Buildings. Read more

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What Are New York State Workers Compensation Benefits?

New York State Workers Compensation Benefits

Workers compensation plays a vital role in protecting both workers and contracting companies from the dangers of the job. The construction industry is one of the most dangerous jobs a person can undertake, with many thousands of accidents every year. However safe you work on a job site, you can’t avoid the occasional accident. Workers comp is designed to mitigate losses while allowing workers the time they need to heal and get back on their feet. Here is a look at what is included in New York State workers compensation benefits.

Benefits Categories

Every state has its own laws, rules and regulations regarding workers comp. In New York State, workers comp benefits are divided among several categories. These include:

  • Monetary benefits
  • Supplemental awards
  • Medical care
  • Social Security
  • Death benefits

Cash Benefits

A week following an accident resulting in disability, a worker is eligible for cash awards. The amount of money a claimant is allowed to collect is based on their average weekly earnings over the past year. A specific mathematical formula is used to determine this award. For those able to return to work but with limited earning capability, partial benefits may be received to make up the difference.

new york state workers compensation

Supplemental Awards

These awards are available to those claimants who are affected by increasing costs of treatment and living. There are two categories of supplemental awards: Those who were injured or disabled permanently before 1979, and widows whose spouse died as the result of an accident before 1979. A form (SC-4) is used to apply for these benefits.

Medical Care

The most important part of workers comp, medical care covers the treatment, rehabilitation, doctor’s visits and any other medical costs incurred as a result of an accident resulting in severe injury, disability or death (costs prior to the decedent’s passing, in the latter case). Everything from medication to diagnostic tests to doctor’s office visits to rehabilitation and surgery can be covered in this area.

Social Security Benefits

Not strictly part of the workers compensation insurance, Social Security is nevertheless a vital part of recovery for those who are long-term or permanently disabled from an accident at work. If your injury will keep you out of action for at least a year, you may be eligible for Social Security benefits. Contact the SSA for more information about this.

New York State Workers Compensation

Death Benefits

Those who lose a spouse due to a workplace injury are entitled to death benefits under New York State law. These benefits are paid out weekly and are equal to two-thirds of the average hourly wage made by the worker before he or she passed away. It is tied to the limits of Cash Awards (above), and can be awarded to the spouse, children, grandchildren, grandparents, siblings, parents or other closest relative.


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Certificates of Insurance – Help for the New York Construction Industry

For years, those receiving Certificates of Insurance reflecting coverage held by New York contractors could never be certain of the breadth of coverage afforded by the policies. Many of the insurers covering contractors working in New York place restrictive endorsements on their policies, and these endorsements are not normally shown on a Certificate of Insurance.

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Cold Weather Masonry

It doesn’t look like anybody’s going to be working outside today in New York! However, in the weeks to come, it’s important to be mindful of the extra precautions you need to take while working in winter weather. For masons, it’s especially important to be aware of the temperature around 40°F, because once it drops under 40, there is special cold weather masonry protocol they should follow.

Much like we discussed when we looked at cold weather concrete, the hydration process in the mortar is slower than usual in cold weather masonry work. When the water in the mortar freezes, mortar expansion occurs, which is a destructive change in the mortar’s volume. The expansion in any mortar that is more than 6% water is enough to crack the mortar and damage the job. The architect or engineer should specify how the masonry should be wetted if it needs to be rewetted, and should also specify how the masons should test to confirm that the procedure was successful. Remember that wet or icy unit surfaces make it difficult for a firm bond to be made between the unit and the mortar.

Tips for Cold Weather Masonry Work

  • It’s helpful to use a speed hydration method, such as using high-early cement or by using an accelerator. Beware that using type III cements may potentially change the mortar color, which can affect the required appearance for your job.
  • Be mindful of how admixture could affect cold weather masonry and reactions.
  • All masonry materials need to be protected from the elements, especially from being wet by rain or snow. Protect all materials by placing them on planks and covering them with tarps when they’re not being used.
  • Consider which of your masonry materials may need to be heated prior to using them in order for cement hydration to properly occur.
  • If you’re trying to accelerate stiffening, use masonry units with high rates of absorption.
  • Although calcium chloride is often used as an accelerator in concrete (at a maximum of 2% by weight of the cement), it is strictly forbidden to be used in mortar by the Specification for Masonry Structures (ACI 530.1-95/ASCE 6-95/TMS 602-95).


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