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Injuries While Working: Construction Sites

Even though construction site workers account for a very small percentage of the workforce, they represent a quarter of work fatalities. When getting hurt on the job becomes a reality, builders have the right to be treated accordingly.

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Causes for Construction Site Accidents

There are different ways a worker can injure themselves at a construction site. They normally fall under the common categories:

  • Falls
  • Electrocution
  • Getting trapped
  • Blunt force by an object

Depending on the specific cause behind the injury will determine the type of personal injury lawsuit that needs to be filed. Common scenarios that have happened on construction sites are:

  • Harness accidents
  • Poor precaution and oversights
  • Collapsed structures
  • Compressed gases
  • Hoist accidents
  • Crane accidents
  • Insufficient training
  • Fire explosion
  • Cell tower accidents
  • Scaffolding accidents
  • Defective equipment
  • Toxic substances
  • Mechanical hazards
  • Welding accidents
  • Misuse of tools

Construction site workers find themselves filing claims because an accident similar to the above scenarios has happened, but the employer is not failing to willingly accommodate the injured worker.

Types of Construction Site Accident Claims

After determining the cause of the injury, will then determine the type of claim that needs to be filed. Contacting a lawyer who is experienced in construction site accident cases is recommended to ensure you’re filing the proper claim.

Personal Injury Claim

This is the most common claim a person can file for financial compensation when an injury happens at the construction site. A general personal injury claim should be filed when a construction worker experiences an injury that’s severe and long-term.

Worker’s Compensation Claim

If a minor or short-term injury has occurred, it may be more suitable to file a worker’s compensation claim. You’ll eventually return to work, but you’ll need medical attention and temporary downtime to recover.

Product Liability Claim

Filing this type of claim means there was a product you used on the job that caused your injury. This could be due to the use of defective tools or equipment provided by the employer.

Wrongful Death Claim

Unfortunately, injuries on a construction site could lead to the death of the construction site worker. Your loved one could file a wrongful death claim against those liable for the fatality.

Liability

There are a number of possibilities when it comes to liability for a construction site incident. Sometimes it is not just the employer who is at fault, but it depends on the circumstances of the injury. When it comes to construction site injuries, the following parties could be held liable:

  • Construction site owners
  • Prime contractors
  • Architects and engineers
  • Sub-contractors
  • General contractors
  • Manufacturers

A personal injury attorney can help you determine exactly whom to file the claim against. It could be multiple parties that are liable for the injury.

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA)

There is an organization created to protect the rights of workers. They also have certain laws in place that employers must follow to reach their safety and ethical standards. Employers must have proper training programs, permits, and routine inspections to OSHA’s standards.

Rights of the construction worker include:

  • OSHA inspecting workplace after a filed complaint from a worker
  • Receiving training for training, safety, and meeting OSHA’s standards
  • Receiving copies of hazard reports
  • Receiving copies of medical records from injury
  • Reviewing records of work-related injuries and illnesses

One of the most important rights that workers have is that the employer can retaliate in any way following the complaint the worker files to OSHA. If the employer does retaliate, the attorney can submit the worker’s claim for retaliation also. Retaliation can include:

  • Firing the employee
  • Treating them unfairly as opposed to others
  • Holding earned income
  • Threats
  • Unnecessary disciplinary action

Options After Filing a Claim

After consulting with an attorney to file a claim and filing a complaint with OSHA, there are a couple of options a plaintiff has to reach a solution to the accident. The decision has to be made to reach an agreement in or out of court.

Settlements

The personal injury attorney can contact those liable and seek mediation to reach a settlement. This is a faster option that’s based on the terms that the defendant offers. If you determine those terms are not in your favor, the case can then go to trial.

Trials

Going this route in the personal injury case causes a longer time to resolve the accident. Setting a court date could push the case back months, possibly a year. Keep in mind the lawyer has more work to do in cases that go to trial, so legal fees are usually higher.

Compensation

There are different costs an injured worker or their loved one can include on the claim. It’s not about receiving a general lump sum, but more about receiving compensation based on your new needs. Costs to include in claims include:

  • Medical bills (current and future)
  • Loss of income
  • Physical therapy and rehabilitation
  • Loss of consortium (spouse’s claim)
  • Adaptive equipment
  • Home modifications to accommodate the injured party
  • Pain and suffering

Nobody should ever have to experience getting injured working on a construction site where safety should be first priority. Contact Oliveira Lawyers today and receive the compensation you or loved one deserves.