Construction can be a dangerous career. When construction workers build and maintain homes, offices, government buildings, bridges, roads, and utility systems, all necessary for our society to run efficiently, they are also putting their safety on the line. The great heights, dangerous chemicals, and power tools, and heavy parts and equipment that are part of the construction business could create hazardous working conditions, especially if the construction site isn’t managed with caution.
If you’ve been injured in a construction accident, contact our New Jersey construction accident lawyers at (856) 778-5500. We’ll fight to get you the compensation you deserve.
The Numbers Behind Construction Accidents
The statistics are alarming. Every year, several hundred construction workers lose their lives, and many more suffer nonfatal injuries. In 2013, for example, 828 construction workers died from injuries they sustained on the worksite, the Occupational Safety & Health Administration (OSHA) reported. Another 197,800 construction workers survived their injuries, some of them severe, according to the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).
The “Fatal Four” (and Beyond)
OSHA identifies the “Fatal Four,” or the most common causes of construction worker deaths:
- Falls. Falls accounted for a shocking 36.5 percent of all construction deaths. That means more than one in three construction site fatalities involved a fall, from rooftops, scaffolding, ladders. The heights at which construction workers must work play a role in the danger.
- Struck by Object. With the number of large, heavy parts and pieces of equipment that construction workers encounter on a daily basis, it’s no surprise that accidents happen in which objects strike victims in the vicinity. More than 10 percent of construction deaths involved objects striking workers.
- Electrocutions. It’s essential to take precautions when working with electricity. When construction sites aren’t managed with care, electricity can become dangerous and fatal. About 8. 6 percent of construction workers killed on the job died by electrocution.
- Caught-in/between. A smaller percentage of construction worker deaths, about 2.5 percent, involve being caught in or between objects or machinery, but the danger is still very serious. Even surviving victims of being caught in or caught between the parts and machinery on a construction site may lose fingers, feet, or arms, effectively ending their construction careers and often changing their lives radically.
The Fatal Four may be the leading causes of on-site construction worker deaths, but they aren’t the only risks. One of our past clients, whose case ended up being worth $825,000, suffered herniated discs in his back when he stepped into an unexpected 18-inch-deep hole in the concrete floor of the building where he was working a violently twisted his ankle.
Just as there are common causes of construction site accidents, there are also medical conditions that are most likely to result from such an accident. Among the most common injuries that occur in the construction industry are:
- Back injury
- Brain injury
- Broken bones
- Spinal cord injury
- Soft tissue damage
Construction Accidents Are Preventable
Construction workers don’t have to take their lives in their hands every time they climb a ladder or turn on a crane or power tool. With the right safety precautions, injuries at construction sites are avoidable. Just getting rid of the “Fatal Four” causes of accidents would cut the number of construction worker deaths in half, OSHA reported.
The employers of construction workers too often choose not to make safety a priority. OSHA found that the safety standards most often violated on construction sites included several factors related to the Fatal Four, including:
- Fall protection
- Machinery and machine guarding
- Electrical wiring methods, components, and equipment
- Electrical systems design
- Powered industrial trucks
What should you do if you or someone you love suffered injuries in a construction site accident? First of all, don’t blame yourself. You need to know what caused your injury and if a safety standard was violated or an unreasonable danger was allowed to exist on your work site. How do you investigate an accident when you have been so badly injured? How do you determine whether the conditions on the construction site violated safety laws? By having an experienced attorney investigate the accident for you.
What Our Construction Accident Attorneys Can Do for You
At Console & Associates P.C., our attorneys have more than 20 years of experience helping victims of all kinds of accidents. We know how to prepare your case for success, how to negotiate the maximum settlement and, when needed, how to fight for you in court. We also know what you’re going through, which is why we’ll do everything we can to make the situation less of a burden on you. After all, there’s only one thing you should have to focus on right now: getting better.
Despite the strict standards and regulations, construction workers face high risks of injury every day. Don’t give up your legal rights by trying to handle this accident on your own. Contact Console & Associates P.C.‘s experienced New Jersey construction accident lawyers today at (856) 778-5500 to get started with a free consultation.