Construction worker at old Domino Sugar factory site in Williamsburg dies in fall, cops say

A construction worker fell from a building in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, and died at Woodhull Medical Center on Friday, Dec. 9, 2016, police said.
A construction worker fell from a building in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, and died at Woodhull Medical Center on Friday, Dec. 9, 2016, police said. Photo Credit: Theodore Parisienne

A construction worker was killed Friday morning when he fell from the sixth floor of a building in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, police said.

Wilfredo Enriques, 59, of Brooklyn, was working on scaffolding at 325 Kent Ave. around 8 a.m. when he fell two stories from a mast climber on the sixth floor to a fourth-floor setback, police and Department of Buildings officials said. He was taken to Woodhull Medical Center where he later died, police said. The city medical examiner will determine the cause of death.

“This morning, we lost another worker to a tragic, likely preventable accident. Our hearts go out to the worker’s loved ones, friends and co-workers during this difficult time,” said DOB Commissioner Rick D. Chandler. “I visited the site this morning and ordered all work to stop. Our investigation into the accident is ongoing.”

Building developer Two Trees Management said Enriques was installing a facade on the building when he fell. He was wearing a harness, but was not clipped into a hook meant to keep a worker from falling, according to the buildings department.

“We are overwhelmed with grief by this tragic accident and extend our deepest condolences to his family, loved ones and colleagues,” Two Trees Management said in a statement. “All work has stopped on the site and we are working closely with the city to determine the cause of the accident.”

“Our message to construction professionals is simple: experience is not enough. Taking a few extra moments to ensure safety guards are in place before working can be the difference between life and death,” said Chandler. 

Enriques worked for PG Products of New York, a subcontractor in charge of the facade and window installation at the site.

“We are devastated by the loss of Wilfredo Enriques, a dedicated employee and friend for the past decade. Our prayers are with Wilfredo’s family at this very difficult time,” John Gibney, CEO of PG Products of New York, said in a statement. “We are fully cooperating with Two Trees and the DOB to understand how this tragedy occurred.”

The building is located on the site of the old Domino Sugar Factory and is part of a massive redevelopment of the 11-acre property, which will create 2,000 apartments, office space and a green space. Last week, the city announced an affordable housing lottery for 104 apartments at the same address.

A buildings department source said there are no open complaints at the site. The DOB investigation is ongoing, a spokesman said.

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