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Construction Site Accidents

Construction Accidents

If you recently sustained in injury at a construction site, you are surely worried about not only your health, but also how you will be able to provide for your loved ones. FVF LAW is here for you. We have recovered millions of dollars on behalf of injured victims in Austin, TX. How? After carefully investigating a case, we file a personal injury claim against the responsible party or individual. In your case, it may be a property owner or company owner. The safety of workers should be ensured at all times by maintaining a safe working environment. We can help you pursue fair compensation for your injury.

  • Present and future medical care
  • Rehabilitative therapy
  • Lost wages

Workplace Activities and Responsibilities

Professionals who install or maintain overhead powerlines, work on major construction projects, or dig underground for infrastructural purposes related to gas and utilities are more likely than the general public to be catastrophically injured. They may suffer loss of appendages or limbs, or even sustain fatal injury. The type of injury that an employee sustains in the workplace corresponds to the nature of the work he or she most often performs. Likewise, certain types of injury correspond to the responsibilities of organizations or companies that oversee workplace activities and the sites where those activities occur.

Construction Site Injuries

The four major causes of death in construction site injuries—classified by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration as the “fatal four”—are falls, electrocutions, struck-by, and caught-in/between. In 2013, they accounted for 58.7% of the fatal injuries in construction. 1

In many worker injury cases that occur at construction sites, liability falls to the general contractor and/or construction management. This is the person, company or group responsible for workers’ safety. And the injuries correspond in particular ways to safety requirements and standards that assist in the determination of liability. For example, when a worker falls from a cracked scaffolding plank, this may reflect the general contractor or construction management’s failure to require scaffold grade lumber. 2 If a worker is crushed by falling masonry that is blown over by wind, this may reflect a failure of the general contractor or construction management to require bracing of the wall. 3

In other workplace injury cases, the liability is not the general contractor’s, but instead falls to the premise owners, who may have failed to comply with certain safety standards. For example, if a roofer falls through a roof opening while making repairs, there may be a failure on the part of the premise owner to require roofers to use fall protection. 4 If a contractor installing a rack handles materials unsafely, causing a worker to be struck by the materials as they fall, the liability may be associated with the premise owner’s failure to require forklift operators to be trained properly and to handle loads safely. 5 If a construction worker in a petrochemical plant is exposed to fire and as a result suffers a burn, the liability may fall to the premise owner who failed to require contractors to wear flame resistant clothing. 6

In some workplace injury cases, the damage or personal injury are directly related to the tools or materials that the worker uses. In such instances, the liability may be attributed to a third party such as the lessor of construction equipment (scissor lifts, forklift trucks, etc.), the supplier of work clothing, the scaffold erector, or the architect. These third parties may be associated with the injury sustained by a worker in such a way that a portion of the responsibility is legally attributable to them.

Discovery and Evidence in Construction Site Cases

In the case of a workplace injury at a construction site, the following documents should be requested from the general contractor or construction management:

  • The defendant’s written safety and health program
  • Copy of the pre-job safety conference minutes
  • Copy of all safety inspection reports
  • Copy of all weekly safety meeting minutes
  • Written job description of the superintendent
  • Contract of general contractor/construction management with construction project owner
  • Contracts of general contractor/construction management with other entities
  • Incident investigation report performed by general contractor/construction management
  • Incident investigation report performed by employer of injured employee
  • Safety inspection reports performed by insurance company loss control representatives
  • Inspection reports performed by consultant or others 7
Contract Labor

Contract laborers are a particularly complicated class in term of personal injury and insurance coverage. These are workers who are not permanently employed by the organization or company for whom they were working when a catastrophic accident occurred. According to the guidelines of the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), injuries sustained by contract laborers should be recorded by the “establishment that provides supervision to the injured worker,” 8 which may be the construction company rather than the contracting agency. However, workers’ compensation for the contract laborer would be the responsibility of the contracting agency, rather than the company or organization who retained the services of the laborers.

References

1 Dong Zhao, et al., “Decision-Making Chains in Electrical Safety for Construction Workers,” Journal of Construction and Engineering Management 142 (2016): 04015055-1.

2 Vincent A. Gallagher, Worker Injury Third Party Cases: Recognizing and Proving Liability (Lanham, MD: Bernan Press, 2017), 3.

3 Vincent A. Gallagher, Worker Injury Third Party Cases: Recognizing and Proving Liability (Lanham, MD: Bernan Press, 2017), 5.

4 Vincent A. Gallagher, Worker Injury Third Party Cases: Recognizing and Proving Liability (Lanham, MD: Bernan Press, 2017), 7.

5 Vincent A. Gallagher, Worker Injury Third Party Cases: Recognizing and Proving Liability (Lanham, MD: Bernan Press, 2017), 6.

6 Vincent A. Gallagher, Worker Injury Third Party Cases: Recognizing and Proving Liability (Lanham, MD: Bernan Press, 2017), 8.

7 Vincent A. Gallagher, Worker Injury Third Party Cases: Recognizing and Proving Liability (Lanham, MD: Bernan Press, 2017), 37.

8 Bureau of Labor Statistics, “Examining the Completeness of Occupational Injury and Illness Data: An Update on Current Research,” Monthly Labor Review, June 2014.

Work Directly With Our Experienced Accident Attorneys in Austin

With an A+ Rating with the Better Business Bureau, our firm is proud of having a reputation for delivering legal services that are reliable and professional. Our goal is to provide you with some sense of relief by personally overseeing all the details of your legal matter. The Austin construction accident lawyers at our firm will work directly with you in order to ensure open communication. In addition, we don’t charge legal fees unless we win! Our firm’s impressive track record and legal excellence can prove to be essential.

Our dedicated legal team has been distinguished with the following:

  • Inclusion on the Super Lawyers® Rising Stars℠ list
  • A 10.0 Superb Avvo Rating – a perfect score!
  • Inclusion into the prestigious Million Dollar Advocates Forum®

FVF Law, LLP: Available Around the Clock

What if you need legal counsel after hours? Or over the weekend? Our Austin personal injury attorneys are available 24/7, so no matter what time of day you need our assistance, we will provide you with the timely services you need. Nothing is more important to us than ensuring that our clients’ needs are met.