The most common types of construction accident injuries include contusions, lacerations, and broken bones. However, permanent and long-term injuries are possible and not uncommon. This includes traumatic brain injuries, spinal cord injuries, internal injuries, and more. Some workers miss months of work, and others have injuries that prevent them from ever returning to their previous careers.
According to the Occupational Safety & Health Administration (OSHA), some of the most commonly cited violations occur on construction sites and lead to serious injuries and deaths. This includes violations related to:
- Fall protection
- Fall protection training
- Electricity lockout-tagout
- Industrial trucks
Falls Are the Leading Reason Behind Construction Site Deaths
The most common types of construction accident injuries that result in fatalities involve falls. Falls cause a third of all worker deaths in the construction industry, according to data cited by the National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH).
While falls are one of the most frequent incidents at work, and they are common in a number of industries, those working in construction and related professions are at a heightened risk for severe injuries and death. This is because they often work at elevated heights using scaffolding or ladders.
Thanks to OSHA and additional protections in New York State under New York Labor Law § 240, there are mandatory safety precautions in place for these workers in and around New York City. This includes providing the best choice of ladders or scaffolding, ensuring the worker has the right training, providing personal protective equipment such as harnesses and safety lines, and more.
This law, together with some related statutes, is known as the Scaffold Law. The protections provided by these codes allow carpenters, demolition workers, painters, window washers, and many types of subcontractors who regularly use ladders or scaffolding to hold the landowners and general contractors responsible when they suffer injuries.
Other Common Ways Construction Workers Suffer Injuries at Work
There are additional dangers on active work sites that put workers in danger. The Scaffold Law covers injuries related to falling objects, as well. It is not unusual for a worker above to drop debris, tools, or other items from a height, which could strike those working below.
In addition, the tools and machines used in construction, renovation, and demolition have their own hazards. This includes power tools, forklifts, and more. Training and following safety protocols are imperative to prevent injuries.
Being pinned between or under materials or objects is another common method of injury. This is especially problematic for demolition workers and when working with trenches. Collapses often cause severe injuries and death with little warning.
Whether or not an injured worker is allowed to file a third-party liability claim to recoup losses following an accident depends on many factors. The Scaffold Law only applies to injuries directly related to working at an elevated height.
New York State law generally prohibits filing suit against your employer for workplace injuries but requires workers’ compensation coverage for most workers. Even if you cannot file a lawsuit related to your injuries, workers’ compensation should pay for your medical treatment and up to two-thirds of your lost income.
Pursuing a Case Based on a Construction Accident Injury
If you were hurt in a construction accident on Long Island or elsewhere in the New York metropolitan area, Friedman & Simon, L.L.P. will help you.. Our multilingual staff will review your case with you, discussing your options in Spanish, Greek, or another language that may be easiest for you.
When we represent a client, we will identify the liable parties, manage all communication on their behalf, and gather evidence to build their claim. We will also determine a value for the case, including non-economic losses.
These cases often rely on expert medical witnesses, vocational rehabilitation specialists, life care planners, and economists. We have a network of experts available who understand how to support a legal case based on construction accident injuries and we call upon them as needed.
A team member from Friedman & Simon, L.L.P. wants to talk with you about your accident and injuries. We will help you understand if you qualify to pursue a case against the landowner or contractor overseeing the site where you were hurt. We will review your accident and injury case for free.
Reach our office today by calling (516) 932-0400. Get started now with a complimentary consultation with our construction accident team.