Tennessee Construction Injury Law: Job Site Accidents
Workplace injuries can occur in any industry, but this danger is ever-present for those working on construction sites. Individuals who work on building sites – be it residential remodeling or commercial contract development – may encounter numerous kinds of heavy machinery, high-powered equipment, large loads being hauled, work from dangerous heights, hazardous chemicals, and other precarious situations. Fortunately, the accomplished construction accident attorneys at InjuryTN are dedicated to protecting the rights of those who have sustained injuries from workplace accidents.
Job Site Accident Statistics
Recent reports from the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) have shown that over 20% of all the annual worker deaths in the private industry take place on construction sites. The majority of these accidents had been attributed to electrical shock, arc flash or blast, getting caught in machines or between multiple surfaces, being struck by falling or flying objects, and falling. OSHA’s reports indicate that entirely eliminating workplace accidents of this kind alone could save more than 450 worker’s lives every year.
Those in charge of operations owe their employees a duty of care in maintaining a safe work environment, including the provision of appropriate training, tools, and equipment for all employees to perform their job safely.
OSHA has established specific guidelines and standards on exactly how certain types of construction should be completed so as to help in preventing construction injury incidents from occurring. For example, the use of personal fall arrest systems when working from great heights is required on construction sites. Similarly, those who work on projects which may involve foreign objects flying around their faces and eyes, such as welders, grinders, and concrete workers, should always use protective eyewear as well as any other appropriate safety equipment.
Most Prevalent Dangers in the Workplace
While job-specific risks and hazards will exist on any given job site, there are a few that come up more often than others. This may include:
- Chemicals – Any chemicals on the job site should be safely stored and appropriately labeled.
- All workers should be required to pass training regarding the dangers of each chemical on-site.
- Those who come into contact with these chemicals risk sustaining serious injuries like chemical burns, respiratory issues, fires, and even explosions
- Cranes – The U.S. boasts an estimate of nearly a quarter million commercial crane operators, and when their instruments do not meet appropriate safety standards, the resulting injuries are typically severe.
- More often than not, such injuries are a direct result of either a worker being struck by an object overhead or by getting stuck in the path of the load’s swing radius.
- Electrical Systems – Electrical shock and electrocutions can be prevented by the proper use of insulation, grounding, guarding, protective equipment, and exercising safe construction practices.
- Forklifts – Nearly 100,000 workers will sustain an injury and approximately 100 will suffer fatally throughout the course of a year while operating a forklift. The majority of such incidents occur due to the vehicle tipping over.
- Ladders – In a given year, over 40 fatalities and nearly 26,000 injuries will occur due to ladder falls.
- Power Tools – Power tools are as prevalent as heavy machinery on construction sites, and those who operate equipment of this caliber must be adequately trained in the proper usage and safety standards established in its field.
- Power tools should never be carried by their cord or pulled from their socket by the cord.
- All tools need to be disconnected from their power source when not being used.
- All power tools should be adequately maintained, repaired, and replaced when necessary.
- Scaffolding – Throughout the course of a given year, nearly 2.4 million construction workers will routinely traverse scaffolding, more than 4,000 injuries will be caused by scaffolding collapses and/or falls, and approximately 50 construction-related fatalities will be the result of such incidents.
- Stairways – Stairwell slips, trips, and falls on construction sites are a significant cause of workplace injuries, which is the reason that OSHA has established regulations forbidding companies from overcrowding stairways with debris, materials, and other hazardous objects, promptly address slippery or wet conditions, and ensure all steps have tread.
- Trench Collapses – Workers should always utilize standard safety systems for trenches whose depth exceeds a few feet and no worker should ever enter an unprotected trench, as such accidents annually cause dozens of fatalities and hundreds of injuries.
Get Help from an Experienced Attorney Today
If you have been injured in a construction accident on a job site, you need to seek immediate legal counsel to ensure your rights are protected and you are fairly compensated. Contact us today to schedule your free case evaluation.
Determining Liability in Construction Accidents
Workers who become injured while performing construction on a job site can often be restricted in the level of compensation they can acquire from an employer. Workers’ compensation is meant to be the exclusive solution for workers to hold their employer accountable for workplace injuries, even if negligence was the cause of the accident. Nonetheless, the accomplished personal injury attorneys often discover that more than one party is responsible for the majority of job site accidents. These parties may include other supervisors, property owners, engineers and designers, contractors and subcontractors, and even manufacturers.
In most cases, the general contractor will bear the responsibility of ensuring the overall safety of conditions and workers on a job site. Even so, agreements that were created with subcontractors could identify who holds the most responsibility when injuries occur because of construction accidents.
Talk to an Experienced Lawyer About Your Job Site Accident
Our dedicated team of legal counsellors will identify the specific employment status of those injured in the accident, in addition to the level of control the managing entities had over the site. This will help us better determine how many (if any) additional individuals will be deemed defendants in the case. Contact InjuryTN today for a free initial consultation to discuss how our team can protect your rights. You pay no costs or additional fees until we win your case. In the even that you are unable to visit our office, one of our expert personal injury attorneys can visit you in your home or hospital room.