The construction industry is considered to be one of the most dangerous due to the high risk of injury. Working at construction sites often involves climbing tall, unstable scaffolding. Scaffolds are temporary platforms built to support construction workers and allow them to work on high or hard-to-reach areas of a jobsite. They are considered one of the most common occupational hazards of the industry.
Unfortunately, many injuries and fatalities occur due to scaffolding accidents. For example, construction workers can fall from great heights when a scaffold structure is not assembled properly. In addition, many employers lack safety programs and equipment.
According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), around 2.3 million construction workers use scaffolds on a regular basis. An estimated 4,500 injuries and 50 deaths could be prevented annually by protecting construction workers who work on them. OSHA also reported that falls are the top cause of construction fatalities, accounting for 364 out of 937 total deaths in the industry in 2015. Each year more than 10,000 construction workers in the United States are seriously injured by such falls.
Common Injuries and Causes of Scaffolding Accidents
In some cases victims of scaffolding accidents may sustain minor wounds and bruises. However, in serious accidents involving falls from high structures, they are likely to suffer more severe injuries such as broken bones, brain injuries, paralysis and even death. Such injuries are likely to require extensive and possible long-term treatment.
The majority of scaffolding accidents on jobsites occur due to:
- Poor assembly of scaffold platforms
- Workers being struck by debris or falling objects
- Wet or slippery surfaces
- Unstable scaffolding
Compensation in Scaffolding Accident Cases
Injured workers can seek compensation through the workers’ compensation policy of their employer regardless of who is at fault. The employer is responsible for paying benefits such as medical expenses and lost wages to the worker if they can prove they sustained their injuries at work.
Proving liability in a scaffolding fall case can be complex. There are often several people or companies who may share responsibility for an accident at a jobsite. If a third party is found to be liable, it may be possible to file a personal injury claim against them and seek compensation from multiple sources.
Briskman Briskman & Greenberg works to ensure clients receive the fair compensation they deserve for their injuries. We strive to provide victims of scaffolding accidents with experienced representation. Call us today for a free consultation to learn more.