The construction industry is an important part of our culture. Employers are obligated to take steps to prevent construction injuries and may be held accountable when personal injuries and wrongful deaths occur.
Your Rights in Construction Injuries
Every construction worker has the right to work in an environment where appropriate safety measures are set in place and properly enforced. Construction sites are inherently dangerous, however; and employer negligence – often caused by cutting corners – magnifies risks to workers.
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) provides ground rules for workers’ rights and employer responsibilities, noting that proper training, required safety gear, and knowledgeable supervision are essential. When employers fail to follow guidelines or provide essential protective equipment, negligence may exist.
If you have been injured at a construction site, you have the right to contact a construction injury lawyer, who can help you determine whether liability exists and if so, may help you receive compensation for your injury.
Negligence in Construction Injuries
In a construction environment, responsible entities including construction companies and their agents are bound by a legal duty to provide workers and site visitors with reasonable measures aimed at providing safety and security. No amount of negligence is acceptable.
Construction equipment manufacturers also bear a level of responsibility in ensuring that power tools, scaffolding, and other items are properly built so as not to cause harm to users or bystanders.
Construction Injury Claims
Compensation from your claim could help you offset expenses related to your injury including the cost of medical care, travel, lost income, loss of future income, and other related costs.
Construction injury claims can be complicated and the process of filing a construction injury claim can be both intimidating and time-consuming. If you choose to take legal action, it is important to find an attorney with experience and expertise in construction-related lawsuits.
What Causes Construction Injuries?
Slipping, tripping, and falling are common construction site accidents. Sometimes workers fall from scaffolding or ladders, leading to severe head injuries or paralysis. Some injuries happen due to slipping or tripping without falling; wrenched necks and backs and other muscle damage are common construction injuries.
Electrocution can happen when hazardous energy isn’t properly controlled or when lockout / tagout procedures aren’t adhered to. Many electricity-related construction injuries occur when workers are told that power has been secured, yet it is still on. Both high- and low-voltage systems can cause electrocution without proper planning, communication, and other preventive efforts. Even when a worker survives electrocution, damage can be severe and life-altering.
Being struck by an object
Falling objects can cause brain injuries, eye injuries, fractures, muscle damage, bruises, and other construction injuries. Objects of every size and description can cause injuries if dropped, swung, or improperly secured. Even injuries that appear minor can cause chronic pain and other lasting impacts.
Being caught, crushed, or compressed
Heavy equipment, collapsing structures, and machinery are often behind cases in which workers are seriously injured or killed. Sometimes being caught or crushed results in the loss of a limb, which leads to further complications. A construction worker who loses a limb has almost certainly lost the ability to return to their chosen profession as well.
More Common Causes of Construction Injuries
Besides the four that OSHA mentions there are also are also other common causes of construction injuries.
Both powered and non-powered hand tools – including drills, box cutters, power saws, shovels, pickaxes, hammers, grinders, and nail guns – are involved in construction injuries.
Heavy equipment and collisions
Even when workers are properly trained, bulldozers, cranes, backhoes, and other types of heavy machinery can cause serious construction injuries. Heavy equipment is often a contributing factor in crush and compression injuries. Trucks and other vehicles are involved in construction site collisions with injuries.
Not only tools and machinery cause construction injuries; lumber, sheet metal, pipes, ducts, wires, and fasteners such as screws and nails often play a role. Materials may be dropped, improperly secured, or improperly stored, or might contribute to injuries during transport.
Lifting and repetitive motion
When construction workers repeatedly bend, twist, reach, and climb, muscles and joints can become stressed. Improper lifting procedures and sudden motions while carrying heavy objects can be major contributing factors in construction-related injuries as well.
Exposure to hazardous materials
Chemicals and other hazardous materials are present at new construction sites and remodels alike. Asbestos may be present inside old buildings and concentrated, short-term exposure to asbestos dust can cause serious illness including mesothelioma caner.
Construction workers can suffer from chemical burns or respiratory illness after chemicals are spilled or when proper personal protective equipment isn’t used.
Determining Negligence in Construction Injuries
While malicious intent rarely exists, contractors, subcontractors, job site supervisors, and others may overlook safety violations or even encourage unsafe practices as a method of saving time, money, or both.
In order to determine negligence in a construction injury, the injured party and/or their representative holds the burden of proof. Often, a construction injury lawyer steps in to help the injured party.
Construction injury attorneys offer expertise in determining whether and how these and other practices constitute negligence, using the following elements as guidelines.
Five Elements Exist in Construction Negligence Cases:
The law recognizes the relationship between the construction company and the injured party and determines whether the defendant owed the injured party a certain standard of care.
Breach of duty
A construction injury attorney uses evidence to prove that the employer, construction company, their agent, or an equipment manufacturer failed to fulfil their duty to exercise reasonable care.
Cause in fact
Negligence may be determined in a construction accident when the defendant’s actions or lack of action are the cause of injury. Also known as “but-for” causation, the element of cause in fact means that “but for the specific action or lack of action on the part of the defendant, the construction injury would not have occurred.”
In determining negligence, construction injury lawyers look for proximate cause, which relates to risks and injuries that the defendant could have foreseen. Proximate cause can be an act or a failure to exercise care, ultimately causing injury and leads to liability.
Construction injuries themselves are legally recognized harms or damages. Your damages may be obvious to outsiders if you have sustained a serious injury, but chronic pain, traumatic brain injuries, and other less-visible damages can require more effort to prove.
Even if you are certain that all five elements of negligence exist following an injury, a skilled construction injury attorney can help in areas such as compiling evidence, calculating damages, and negotiating a fair settlement.
What Actions to Take if You Want to Make A Claim?
Select Justice is an advocacy group made up of journalists, investigators and legal professionals committed to helping injured individuals seek justice. We believe that everyone is entitled to know their legal rights and how to use them.
No, Select Justice is not a law firm and is not qualified to give any legal advice. We advocate for those individuals who have been harmed or injured by assisting them with understanding the cause of their situation, identifying who may be responsible, and helping them take steps to pursue justice against the wrongdoers.
Select Justice is an absolutely free service that does not charge any money to advocate for injured individuals. During no part of the process with Select Justice will users be required to provide any monetary compensation or payment to the company.
You can email us firstname.lastname@example.org to get in touch with a team member. We are here to help you and loved ones advocate for justice. Feel free to send us any questions you might have, either about an injury or the process for pursuing justice so we can help you exercise your rights.