Falls From Heights
Construction workers commonly work from heights many people would find unnerving; in some cases, they do so without adequate safety measures. Whether it’s a fall from scaffolding, a ladder or a harness attached to an electrical pole, construction workers can suffer terribly because of falls from heights.
The nature of the construction industry gives workers a wide range of reasons to be at great heights, and depending on the circumstances of each case, injured workers could be entitled to more than workers’ compensation after a fall. Contractors are required to provide a safe working environment, which includes proper safety precautions. In many situations, New York Labor Law Section 240 gives injured workers compensation after a fall in which the contractor or the owner were not directly or actively at fault. However, if your injury was caused by the negligence of a contractor or owner, then you may have grounds for a lawsuit.
When a construction worker suffers a ladder fall on the worksite, the consequences can be disastrous. Elevated falls from ladders and scaffolds can cause debilitating injuries and can be fatal in some cases. According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), falls at construction sites kill between 150 and 200 workers and injure more than 100,000 every year. The injuries suffered in these falls can cause many difficulties for victims and their families. Victims may suffer lost wages, high medical bills not covered by insurance and long-term pain and suffering.
Fortunately, construction workers who have suffered an injury due to an elevated ladder fall may have legal recourse against the owner of the property, the general contractor or the individual who caused the injury. As a result, construction workers who have suffered an injury due to an elevated fall should seek the counsel of a New York City construction accident attorney.
Because painters often work on scaffolding and many types of ladders, they are at an increased risk for injuries from falls. Some of the most common injuries caused by painters falls include brain injuries, spinal cord injuries and damage to the back, neck, arms or legs. There is always the potential for catastrophic injury and wrongful death due to painters falls.
If the worker hits his or her head, serious brain injury can lead to a vegetative state, coma or death. A blow to the spinal cord may cause paralysis, paraplegia or quadriplegia. Even a fractured arm or leg can cause permanent disability and prevent a return to work. Victims of painters falls may have legal recourse if it can be shown that the property owner or general contractor’s negligence caused the injury. If you have been injured in a fall, do not hesitate to contact our New York City construction accident attorneys.
Scaffolding Falls & Accidents
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports that more than 20 percent of nonfatal construction worker injuries come from falls. Falling from scaffolds is a common source of construction injuries. Unfortunately, scaffold falls can cause catastrophic or fatal injuries. New York Labor Law Section 240 provides for damages for workers injured in elevation-related accidents, including accidents that involve scaffolding falls.
Injuries from scaffolding falls and collapses may include brain injuries and spinal cord injuries, as well as damage to the arms, legs, back or neck. These injuries may be serious, resulting in problems such as broken or crushed bones, nerve damage and torn ligaments or tendons. In very serious cases, a worker may suffer catastrophic brain damage or paralysis.
How Do Scaffolding Accidents Happen?
Construction sites may feature multiple types of scaffolds, including suspension, supported, single and multipoint, hoist, interior-hung, elevator false car and masons’ scaffolding. Injuries can occur when scaffolding is improperly assembled, causing collapse or a worker fall. Falls can also occur due to the failure to couple use of the scaffold with proper fall protection equipment such as lanyards, lifelines and safety nets. Sometimes an accident is not due to scaffold failure, but to a falling object hitting a worker on the scaffold. In addition, contact with power lines can cause electrical shock.
Though they look deceptively simple, scaffolds have numerous parts and must be set up correctly to maintain balance and support the weight of workers and materials. Accidents such as scaffold collapses and falls can happen when there are problems with the guardrails, cross bracing, mid rails, footings, planking and decking of platforms, ties and braces, counterweights, load capacity or faulty access to the platform. If you have been injured in a scaffolding accident, then you may be entitled to compensation. Our construction accident attorneys can help you determine if you have grounds for a lawsuit.