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Scaffolding Injuries on a Texas Construction Site      

Construction is the most dangerous industry in the United States. It has the highest annual fatality rate due to accidents such as scaffolding disasters and catastrophic falls. Scaffolds must be carefully built, inspected and regulated to ensure optimal worker safety in Texas. Unfortunately, construction companies and their workers do not always comply with safety requirements. This can result in serious scaffolding injuries.

What Can Cause a Scaffolding Accident and Injury?

An investigation into a scaffolding accident is typically necessary to determine the cause before the victim can seek compensation through an insurance claim or lawsuit in Texas. The construction company, the Texas Department of Insurance or the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) may conduct an investigation that involves interviewing witnesses, reviewing accident reports and hiring experts.

Common causes of scaffolding accidents and injuries include:

  • Environmental conditions, such as rain or wind
  • Faulty or defective scaffolding
  • Hit-by falling objects
  • Improper scaffold/scaffolding construction
  • Inadequate inspections or repairs
  • Inadequate supervision
  • Inadequate worker training
  • Incorrect scaffold construction
  • Lack of guardrails or fall protection
  • Lack of proper scaffolding safety equipment
  • No proper communication among workers
  • Old or dilapidated scaffolds
  • Overloaded scaffolds
  • Poor scaffolding design
  • Scaffold collapses
  • Scaffold part failures
  • Tools or materials falling from a scaffold
  • Unsafe worker behavior while on a scaffold
  • Unstable surface foundation

Many scaffolding accidents are caused by a combination of factors, such as improper installation and lack of maintenance. The most common types of scaffold-related accidents are structural collapses, falls and being struck by a falling object. Employers, supervisors and construction workers are all essential for maintaining a safe work environment. It is critical for all parties at a construction site to do their part to prevent harmful construction accidents.

Common Injuries From Scaffolding Accidents in Texas

Employees in the construction industry may work from scaffolds that are dozens of feet in the air. Falling from this height could be catastrophic and result in life-threatening injuries. Getting crushed beneath a collapsing structure or hit on the head by something that fell from a raised platform could also lead to life-altering injuries, including permanent disabilities.

Examples of injuries suffered in scaffold-related accidents in Texas are:

  • Amputations
  • Back and neck injuries
  • Broken bones
  • Bruises and contusions
  • Crush injuries
  • Lacerations
  • Organ damage
  • Paralysis
  • Skull fractures
  • Soft-tissue damage
  • Spinal cord injuries
  • Traumatic brain injuries

At FVF Law Firm, our Austin personal injury lawyers have experience representing clients with all types of work-related injuries from scaffold accidents. Sadly, many workers do not survive these disasters. OSHA reports that preventing scaffold-related accidents would save an average of 50 lives per year. Our lawyers represent grieving family members in wrongful death claims in Texas.

Federal Scaffold Safety Rules and Regulations

The construction industry must comply with federal laws in terms of work-related equipment such as scaffolds. For example, according to 29 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) Section 1926.451, every scaffold and scaffold component must be capable of supporting its own weight plus at least four times the maximum intended load applied or transmitted to it without failing.

There are rules in place for how a scaffold must be designed, constructed, used, inspected, maintained, repaired and deconstructed. Site managers must also provide adequate safety gear to employees who are working on scaffolds, such as personal fall arrest systems. Construction companies must ensure that their workers are properly trained in knowing and obeying these laws.

OSHA is in charge of enforcing employer compliance. According to OSHA statistics, “lack of fall protection in construction” was the number one most frequently cited standard violated in fiscal year 2022. “Scaffolding, construction” was the fifth-most common violation. This data shows a distinct issue with the safety of scaffolds in the construction industry.

How to Seek Financial Compensation for Scaffolding Injuries in Texas

If you suffer a serious injury in a scaffold-related work accident in Texas, you may be able to recover compensation to make it easier to move forward. You are most likely going through a lot as a victim of a scaffold injury – such as surgeries, rehabilitation and emotional distress. A fair settlement or judgment award could give you greater peace of mind during this difficult time.

For example, a settlement from an insurer could pay for your necessary medical care, cover lost wages due to a temporary or permanent disability, and provide an additional amount for your pain and suffering. You may have multiple legal options for collecting compensation as an injured construction worker.

Workers’ Compensation Claim

A no-fault workers’ compensation insurance claim could lead to financial benefits being paid to a victim without needing proof of negligence. Workers’ comp is often the simplest way to recover compensation for a scaffold accident in Texas if the employer has this type of insurance. However, it may not lead to as much compensation as a lawsuit.

Personal Injury Lawsuit

If one or more parties were negligent (failed to use proper care) and this caused or contributed to the scaffold-related accident, that party may be held financially responsible for the victim’s losses through a personal injury claim. A lawsuit brought against an employer, an equipment or product manufacturer, or a contractor could lead to maximum compensation for the worker’s injuries in a case involving negligence.

Both Types of Claims

If a worker in Texas accepts a workers’ compensation settlement from an insurance company, he or she loses the opportunity to file a lawsuit against an employer. This is why it is important to consult with an attorney before accepting a settlement offer. If a third party (someone other than the employer) caused the scaffold injury, the worker could potentially recover through both types of legal claims.

Contact a Scaffold Injury Lawyer in Texas Today

If you or someone you love was recently hurt in a scaffold-related accident in Texas, get help from the Austin construction injury lawyers at FVF Law Firm, starting with a no-obligation free case consultation. Our attorneys have more than 100 years of combined legal experience and have earned the Torch Award for Marketplace Ethics from the Better Business Bureau.

We have what it takes to lead you through the claims process for a serious scaffolding injury. To learn more about your legal rights and options after this type of construction site accident, call us at (512) 640-2146 or fill out our online contact form.

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Fogelman & Von Flatern is a personal injury law firm that believes it matters why we practice law: to make sure good people in unfair circumstances who want reasonable options are taken seriously, especially by their attorney. We value transparency, compassion, and justice, and we strive to embody that in our practice. At FVF, you can trust that you've got the best people on your case, for the right reasons.

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