Construction Site Accidents
Injuries at construction sites are often the result of the negligence of a general contractor, sub-contractor, project manager, product manufacturer, engineer or architect.
Numerous construction site accidents happen every year in Massachusetts and throughout the country. In December 2013, a 37-year old Boston man was killed while working at a construction site in Downtown Crossing when the scissor lift he was operating malfunctioned. In another incident, two construction workers were injured when the chutes used to move cement gave way and fell on them from an estimated height of 35 feet. Two construction workers were seriously injured recently due to a partial collapse of the upper floors of a building under construction in Boston's Theater District. On average, 1000 or more workers die each year as a result of construction site accidents.
According to the Occupational Health and Safety Administration (OSHA), the federal administrative agency responsible for the implementation of policies and procedures to ensure the safety of workers on construction sites and other businesses, the leading causes of death and serious injury on construction sites in 2013 were falls, being struck by an object, and electrocution.
OSHA has found that most fall accidents are preventable when employers plan ahead to get the job done safely, provide workers with the right equipment and train workers to use the equipment safely. For example, when working from heights, employers must consider the type of fall protection necessary to perform work safely, provide that fall protection and train their employees to use it.
“Struck by” injuries, according to OSHA, are most often caused by heavy equipment and vehicles, falling or flying objects or masonry walls that are being constructed. Safety precautions, like inspecting brakes, clearing personnel before using lifting or dumping devices and wearing orange vests during the day and reflective vests at night are just some of the ways to reduce these incidents.
Electrocution accidents are caused by direct contact with power lines, improper grounding of electrical lines and improper use of power cords. These accidents are preventable by following OSHA guidelines that require construction workers not to work near any part of an electrical power circuit unless protected.
Although falling, “struck by” and electrocution are the major causes of accidents on the job site, workers are injured in numerous other ways. Accidents may be caused simply because an employer forces workers to hurry and the general contractor on the job site does nothing to stop the employer from jeopardizing the safety of the workers.
In Massachusetts, a worker generally cannot sue the employer when the worker is injured on the job – instead the worker receives Workers Compensation. But there are often others responsible for insuring safety on the jobsite, like a general contractor. The injury may have been caused by another employer’s crew or by defective equipment or machinery. Where people or businesses other than the employer or your fellow workers are responsible, you may have a valid claim against them. And prosecuting those claims will not only compensate you for your injuries, it can lead to better safety measures so other workers will not be injured or killed.
If you or a family member has been injured or killed in a construction site accident in Massachusetts, call KJC Law Firm for a free consultation. We will tell you whether you have a case and help you get compensation for your injuries or your family member’s wrongful death. The construction site accident lawyers at KJC Law Firm have more than 90 years of experience litigating major cases. We have the resources to investigate your claim, hire the necessary experts, and get you the compensation that you deserve. KJC Law Firm represents injured people from communities all across Massachusetts, including the Greater Boston area, Cambridge, MetroWest, Cape Cod, Fall River, Lowell, Worcester and Springfield.