The distance between a scaffold and the ground can mean the distance between life and death. At great heights, movements must be made with the calculation of a ninja. Each step is intended to be an efficient movement.
You may have noticed that construction workers who use scaffolding to perform some activity at height are often tied to thick ropes that support them in case of accidents. These ropes were not made in vain but as an emergency kit in case of unforeseen situations.
Falling from scaffolding at one of Brooklyn's construction projects can be an experience no one ever wants to experience. In some cases, due to the level of height at which work is often performed on large projects, the prognosis is death for the worker, although sometimes he or she may be left alive, albeit with more than one significant injury.
You may be wondering, but if large construction companies are supposed to have safety plans required by the State to operate, why do these types of events continue to occur in New York and other major cities? What are those involved doing wrong? Can the guilty and responsible parties be easily determined?
Sometimes the causes may be due to a cocktail of reasons, from lack of experience to bad weather. On a day when it was suddenly better not to go out to work, perhaps a thunderstorm was occurring, or incessant rain had invaded the construction camp.
However, someone gave the order to carry out activities, and the consequences were fatal. Could someone who ordered the work to be carried out without considering the adverse weather have some responsibility for the events?
These accidents can also show a group of responsible parties, and not all the responsibility falls on one person. There have also been cases of substance consumption during work, which may have altered the conscience of some of the workers and resulted in an unfortunate event.
From a slip, a falling object or a spontaneous dizziness. Even a stabbing pain at heights. Even in the strangest of cases a lightning strike on a worker resulted in his immediate death. Situations can happen in seconds, in a stumble, or in a moment's distraction.
You maybe were injured in a scaffold doing your daily working activities. First accident during your whole career in the field? Don't worry, accidents in New York are so common. You just need the advice from the best professionals in the legal field. The ones that learned everything during the last 20 years working with us.
Our specialists know a lot about scaffold accidents on construction sites, and when it comes to scaffolding they have seen similar cases in the past. Each has its own challenges and strategies to be defined. However, our success rate is high, and we can determine in a short amount of time if your case qualifies for compensation. Have you been involved in an accident of this type?
Has the contractor suddenly tried to negotiate an out-of-court settlement with you? Are you sure that the amount they are offering you would exceed the compensation you could get if you went the way we would suggest?
You should not be in doubt. You better talk to a professional from our new offices in New York and get a diagnosis on the case you present to us. You will then be able to understand what kind of rights may have been violated and how you should demand that they be recognized.
The worst thing you can do is to omit the issue for fear of the legal process itself, which should not worry you since what is sought is to clarify the facts and determine any harmful attitude that was taken against you.
It may be on the part of the company that you worked for, of a colleague, of some training that you did not receive, of some equipment in bad condition that you should have used, of negligence in choosing the wrong day of work according to the weather conditions, among other considerations that we usually carry out after establishing first contact with a potential client.
Join us to find out more about Brooklyn Scaffolding accidents and the most relevant aspects of them below.
Common causes of scaffolding accidents
Although the causes, as we have already mentioned, may be diverse. For instance, if a scaffold collapsed.
Our expert injury attorneys agree that these causes may be the most common among the hundreds we have recorded:
- Lack of Fall Protection: Failure to provide adequate fall protection measures, such as guardrails, safety nets, or personal fall arrest systems, can result in workers falling from scaffolding.
- Inadequate Training: Workers who are not adequately trained in scaffold assembly, use, or safety procedures are more prone to accidents. Proper training is essential to prevent mishaps. Dive into Safety and Health Administration rules should also be part of the training.
- Faulty Scaffold Design: Some types of scaffolding that are not designed correctly or are poorly constructed can collapse or become unstable, leading to accidents.
- Weather Conditions: Adverse weather conditions, such as rain, snow, or strong winds, can make scaffolding slippery or unstable, increasing the risk of accidents.
- Unsafe Load Capacity: Working on scaffolds while overloading them with excessive materials or workers beyond their load capacity can cause them to collapse.
- Poor Maintenance: Neglecting scaffold maintenance, including regular inspections and repairs, can lead to weakened or damaged scaffolding components that may fail during use.
- Missing or Damaged Planking: Scaffolding planks that are missing, cracked, or damaged can give way under a worker's weight, causing them to fall.
- Lack of Proper Safety Gear: Workers not wearing appropriate personal protective equipment (PPE), or safety equipment, such as hard hats, harnesses, or non-slip footwear, are at a higher risk of accidents and having a scaffold injury.
- Inadequate Supervision: A lack of proper supervision can result in workers taking unsafe shortcuts or not following safety protocols such as occupational safety and health manuals.
- Debris and Obstructions: Tools, materials, or debris left on scaffolding platforms can create tripping hazards and contribute to accidents.
- Scaffold Erection and Dismantling Errors: Mistakes made during scaffold assembly or dismantling can weaken the structure, making it unsafe for use.
- Electrical Hazards: Scaffolding near power lines or exposed electrical sources can pose electrocution risks if workers come into contact with live wires.
- Inadequate Fall Arrest Systems: If workers do not have proper fall arrest systems in place or fail to use them correctly, accidents can lead to severe injuries or fatalities.
- Worker Fatigue: Fatigue can impair a worker's judgment and coordination, increasing the likelihood of accidents.
- Lack of Communication: Poor communication among workers on scaffolding can lead to accidental collisions or other mishaps, endangering everyone involved.
The importance of legal representation for victims of scaffolding accidents
It is possible that as you have been reviewing this article, you have come across terms with which you are not very familiar. That is totally normal, although we always recommend having certain notions about the main laws that affect these types of cases. You do not need to be a lawyer to know your natural rights, which you cannot waive for any reason.
However, there are aspects that take years to fully understand. One of these may be the deadlines involved in these processes or certain legal theories for defending an argument in front of a judge. Many of our New York's scaffold accident lawyers have learned through experience, although their academic training gave them the foundation to build successful careers. Practical experience is not necessarily gained in college but by serving the community in which a professional ends up performing.
That's why the help of a Brooklyn scaffolding accident lawyer from our team is critical. You will not be counting on the services of novices or improvised but on 30 years of experience on your side to defend your interests, go towards compensation, and make your rights visible.
If you ask us, what are the most relevant aspects of the legal support provided by a lawyer in this type of case? We would take into account the following aspects:
- Navigating Legal Complexity: Scaffolding accident cases can be legally intricate. Legal representation helps victims comprehend their rights, responsibilities, and the complexities of their case. Our lawyers are well-versed in the specific laws, regulations, health administration, OSHA rules, and standards that apply to construction sites and scaffolding safety, ensuring victims receive the protection they deserve.
- Determining Liability: An attorney can conduct a thorough investigation into the scaffolding accident. This includes identifying the parties responsible for the accident, which might include contractors, property owners, equipment manufacturers, or others. Determining liability is crucial in holding these parties accountable for the victim's injuries and losses.
- Gathering Evidence: Legal professionals have the expertise to gather and preserve crucial evidence. This includes obtaining accident reports, medical records, and statements from witnesses. Building a robust case based on this evidence is essential for achieving a favorable outcome in legal proceedings.
- Calculating Damages: Attorneys can accurately calculate the full extent of a victim's damages. These damages may encompass medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, rehabilitation costs, and future economic losses. Legal representation ensures that no aspect of compensation is overlooked.
- Negotiating with Insurance Companies: Insurance companies often attempt to minimize payouts to accident victims. Lawyers are skilled negotiators who can advocate for victims' rights and interests during negotiations, ensuring that they receive fair compensation that fully addresses their needs.
- Preserving Rights: Our professionals are dedicated to preserving the rights of scaffolding accident victims. They ensure that insurance companies or opposing parties do not take advantage of victims. Protecting these rights is fundamental to achieving justice.
- Filing Timely Claims: Our professionals understand the importance of filing claims within the statute of limitations. Missing this deadline can result in the loss of the right to seek compensation. Legal representation ensures that claims are filed in a timely manner, safeguarding the victim's ability to pursue a case.
- Handling Legal Procedures: Our lawyers are knowledgeable about court procedures, document filings, and deadlines. They meticulously handle all legal procedures, ensuring that every necessary step is taken to pursue a scaffolding accident case successfully.
- Expert Witnesses: Our professionals can consult with expert witnesses to strengthen the victim's case. These experts may include medical professionals who can provide insight into the extent of the injuries or accident reconstruction specialists who can offer expert opinions on how the accident occurred.
- Exploring Legal Options: Legal representation allows victims to explore various legal options available to them. Depending on the circumstances, these options may include pursuing personal injury claims, workers' compensation benefits, or third-party liability claims. Our professionals guide victims in selecting the most suitable course of action for their unique situation.
- Providing Peace of Mind: Knowing that a skilled attorney is handling their case provides scaffolding accident victims with peace of mind during a challenging and stressful time. This reassurance allows victims to focus on their recovery while their legal rights are protected.
- Maximizing Compensation: Our professionals are experienced in seeking the maximum compensation available for scaffolding accident victims. They understand the nuances of different types of compensation and work tirelessly to help victims recover financial stability and security.
- Legal Advocacy: Our professionals serve as strong advocates for their clients throughout the legal process. They ensure that their clients' voices are heard and their rights are upheld in legal proceedings, fighting vigorously for justice on their behalf.
- Settlement Negotiations: Our lawyers can skillfully negotiate settlements on behalf of scaffolding accident victims. Negotiating settlements can expedite the process and secure fair compensation without the need for a lengthy trial, providing victims with a more efficient resolution to their cases.
- Trial Representation: If necessary, legal representation includes expert trial lawyers who can effectively present the case in court. They are equipped to fight for the victim's rights and interests during a trial, using their advocacy skills and legal expertise to pursue a favorable outcome.
Immediate Actions After a Scaffolding Accident
Finally, we would like to leave you with a guide on the steps you should take into account if you are involved in this type of event. Although, not before emphasizing that one of the most important steps after an event of this nature should be to call The Ward Law Group, our law firm, and from then on, the process will be smoother and more favorable to your interests. We look forward to hearing from you.
- Seek Medical Attention: The first and most critical step is to seek immediate medical attention for any injuries sustained. Your health and well-being should be the top priority. Even traumatic brain injuries could be much easier to deal with if you act on time.
- Report the Accident: Notify your supervisor, employer, or property owner about the scaffolding accident. Promptly reporting the incident helps create a record of the event.
- Preserve Evidence: If possible, preserve evidence related to the accident. This can include taking photographs of the accident scene, your injuries, and the scaffolding involved.
- Collect Witness Information: If there were any witnesses to the accident, obtain their contact information. Witnesses may provide crucial statements later.
- Document Your Injuries: Keep a detailed record of your injuries, including photographs, medical reports, and any treatment you receive. This documentation is essential for your claim.
- Contact an Attorney: Reach out to a qualified scaffolding accident attorney as soon as possible. An attorney can advise you on your legal rights and help protect your interests.
- Do Not Give Statements: Avoid providing recorded statements or discussing the accident with insurance representatives without legal counsel present. Your attorney can guide you on how to communicate with insurers.
- Preserve Your Employment: If you are unable to work due to your injuries, notify your employer and inquire about workers' compensation benefits. Your attorney can help you navigate this process.
- Follow Medical Advice: Adhere to the treatment plan prescribed by your medical professionals. Failing to do so can affect your claim.