Hi everybody, I’m Bill Adler and today, we’d like to talk about fall accidents in the construction industry and on construction sites. In construction, you have to go where the job takes you. For some jobs, that includes high places. But falling from a height can be very dangerous, which is one of the reasons there are so many serious accidents in the construction industry. We’ll go over how falls happen, what happens next and what you can do about it.
Along with accidents involving operators of heavy machinery or power tools, falls from a height are among the most common causes of injuries and deaths at construction sites. It’s not hard to see why. If your job takes you up high on a ladder, scaffolding or a roof, you’re at risk for a fall. Construction jobs that are especially dangerous for this reason include high-rise construction, roofing, electrical power line installation and repair and structural iron and steel work.
Some falls are truly accidents. But in other cases, falls are the foreseeable result of policies that don’t put safety first. Federal workplace safety regulations require fall protection for people working at a height. Ladders and scaffolding must be built well, capable of holding a load, and used on even ground. Everyone at the job site should get safety training. When employers don’t follow these rules, they’re putting workers at risk for serious injuries.
And falls really can cause severe injuries. They’re the number-one cause of death at construction sites, according to federal Labor Department data. Workers who survive the fall can still suffer disabling injuries. It’s easy to hit your head in a fall, which can lead to a disabling traumatic brain injury. A hard fall can also cause spinal cord damage leading to paralysis. A rough landing can cause multiple broken bones and other injuries. And, while sewer and ditch digger construction jobs don’t take the worker up high, they can cause similar injuries from a cave-in of the tunnel or duct.
It takes a long time to recover from that kind of accident. Even if you can make a full recovery, you may be looking at months of healing, with lots of medical procedures that cost money. Many construction workers can’t work during that time, which makes it harder to pay those bills, or even to support yourself. If your injury is permanent, you may never be able to return to the same job, and you may need expensive long-term therapies or other care.
When those costs were caused by someone else’s careless behavior, you have the right to hold them responsible. On construction sites, you may be able to do that through workers’ compensation, a lawsuit or both. If your employer offers workers’ compensation, you can claim it regardless of whose fault the accident was, but you can’t sue your employer. If it doesn’t offer workers’ comp, you can sue. And if another contractor was responsible for the injury, you may be able to sue them while also claiming workers’ comp. A lot depends on your situation, so don’t hesitate to ask an experienced construction fall lawyer for help.
If you’re in this situation, don’t wait to call Jim Adler & Associates. You may have already heard from the insurance company. Insurance companies know that bad falls lead to very serious injuries. And serious injuries are expensive, so some insurers will do whatever they can to get out of paying. You may have your claim denied for reasons that just don’t make sense, or they may discourage you from filing a claim in the first place. They may even try to prevent a claim by asking you to sign something or give a recorded statement.
If you’re under that kind of pressure, and something just seems fishy, call Jim Adler & Associates. We have 40 years of experience helping injured Texans get the money they need to get treatment to get back on their feet. We can make sure you don’t get victimized a second time by the insurance companies’ dirty tricks. And we offer free case evaluations, so you can talk to us about your rights and your legal options at no cost. To set one of those up, call us at 1-800-567-7575 or fill out our contact form at jimadler.com.