Construction sites are some of the most dangerous places to work. Because of the heavy machinery, debris, and working conditions present, construction site workers are at a higher risk of injury than most other occupations.
The Centers for Disease Control reports that nearly 10 percent of the millions of workplace injuries each year happen on construction sites and 20 percent of all work-related fatalities involve construction workers. The unfortunate fact is that many of these injuries are preventable.
While most workplace injuries fall under the state’s worker’s compensation system, there may be some exceptions. If you have been injured on the job, it’s always a good idea to discuss your situation with a knowledgeable worker’s compensation and personal injury attorney.
5 Common Construction Accident Injuries
The causes of a construction injury can vary. While some of the ways that these tragedies can happen are simple to spot, others are more obscure. Some of the most common construction accident injuries include:
Falls at work are divided into two categories – falls from heights and falls from the ground level (i.e. – slip, trip, and fall). Falls from heights are the leading cause of workplace fatalities. There are many fall hazards that exist on a construction site, such as scaffoldings, ladders, and unfinished stairways and roofs. These fall accidents can lead to severe injury such as traumatic brain injury and spinal cord injuries.
- Struck by Object
OSHA defines “struck by” injuries as being the victim of forcible contact or impact from a falling object. Examples of these types of injuries include falling tools from a height, falling equipment, or being struck by a piece of heavy machinery such as a truck. These accidents can result in severe head trauma and a variety of other life-threatening injuries.
When there are unsafe work conditions or faulty equipment on a construction site, electrocution injuries could be the result. If they don’t lead to death, these accidents can result in serious burns, internal organ damage, and even loss of limbs or tissue.
When construction workers must be in close proximity to machinery and other heavy equipment, there is an increased risk of caught-in/between accidents. These occur when a worker’s body is crushed, caught, squeezed, or pinched between two or more objects. This can happen with vehicles, machinery, and materials if the right safety guidelines are not in place.
It’s not uncommon for construction workers to receive injuries due to overexertion and extreme exposure. Construction work requires heavy physical demands and injury can happen from excess lifting, pulling, or pushing. Heavy labor outside in the elements can also take its toll, where heat exhaustion can be a dangerous factor.
Options for Injured Construction Workers
When you’ve been injured on the job, you’re likely going to face some challenges. You may have mounting medical bills, have to take time off from work, and experience temporary or even permanent loss of function due to your accident.
West Virginia’s worker’s compensation laws are meant to ensure that injured workers receive the care and benefits they need after a job-related injury. Provided your employer is legally required to carry this coverage (most are), this policy will offer a variety of benefits should you be injured on a construction site.
This coverage is available whether or not your employer was negligent and even if you made a mistake that contributed to your workplace injury, as long as you didn’t violate company policy or weren’t intoxicated. Worker’s compensation will pay for your medical bills, lost wages, and any applicable permanent impairment. In most cases, you cannot sue after a workplace injury, but there are exceptions.
If a party other than your employer caused your accident or contributed to your injuries, you might be able to sue. Third party lawsuits are common with machinery accidents and motor vehicle crashes.
If you are a construction worker who has suffered an injury on the job in West Virginia, the experienced workplace injury attorneys at Bailey, Javins & Carter can help you secure the benefits you deserve. Contact us now at 1-800-497-0234 or reach us online to schedule a free consultation.