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Brian Petrides, a construction worker from Long Island, NY has received a historic settlement from the city of New York. Petrides fell 20 feet, off of scaffolding at a Brooklyn school. The accident was so bad that he was unable to tie his shoes and was forced to send his oldest son to live with relatives because he could not afford to take care of him in addition to his medical bills.
"I try to make the best of it in front of everybody but alone it's a horror show. I'm 43 and I feel like I'm 83," Petrides said. "My 6 year old son has to put my shoes on me. That's not how it's supposed to be. If I had snapped my neck and died, I feel like it would have been better for my family than to have to take care of me. We financially couldn't keep everybody in the house and feed everybody." He is overjoyed that the settlement will allow him to bring home his eldest son. "Having my whole family together under one roof will make me feel like a little bit more of a man."
Petrides was working at a Brooklyn school, and a SCA contractor told him to dismantle scaffolding. Petrides argued that it was too dangerous, but he was forced to do it anyway. "I just went right over and landed headfirst on broken-up concrete."
According to Petrides' lawyer, Edmond Chakmakian,"the job had been shut down before because of the scaffolding being unsafe. In this case, the SCA failed to tie down and secure the planks, so Brian stepped on it, it went out under him."
Petrides sued the city, the Department of Education, and the School Construction Authority.