Construction sites and construction projects are inherently dangerous. There is always some measure of risk to everyone involved in any project. The contractors, subcontractors and other entities are vying may to complete multiple tasks simultaneously. Construction projects generally require use of heavy machinery and working from heights. Many projects involve the risk of explosions or collapse of a structure. Despite using the appropriate safety equipment workers can still suffer catastrophic injuries. Construction workers constantly encounter hazardous conditions every single day.
As contractors rush to complete projects in order to increase their revenue the safety of the workers involved can sometimes be compromised. In the worst-case scenario construction workers can suffer serious or fatal injuries on the job. The state of Connecticut as most other states offers workers’ compensation benefits to the injured or deceased party. Losing a loved one in an on the job accident is devastating. It has a huge emotional impact on a person as they grieve the loss of their husband, wife, mother, or father. Although nothing can cover the loss that they are feeling, workers’ compensation law provides monetary compensation for widows, widowers and children. Widows and widowers may be entitled to benefits for the remainder of their lives or until they remarry depending on the circumstances of their case. Children, up to a certain age can also qualify for certain benefits.
Almost 20 percent of the fatal injuries suffered by workers in private industry in 2011 were in construction accidents. The leading causes of death and serious injury at construction sites were falls, electrocutions, and falling objects and getting caught between heavy objects or trapped in a collapse. Falling from a second story or from a roof can easily lead to a catastrophic injury. Because of the hazardous nature of this job safety rules require that those working over six feet off the ground wear a safety harness and have a guard rail or a safety net underneath the work area. The rules have been in effect for commercial site for several years, but as per recent legislation they apply to residential job sites as well.
It can be nearly impossible to avoid something that falls unexpectedly from above. A construction accident at Virginia Tech injured five workers after a hydraulic scaffold collapsed and fell more than 20 feet. The cause of the accident was investigated but it illustrated the inherently hazardous nature associated with construction work. Lifting and moving heavy pipes and equipment from trucks to a work site can also increase the risks of catastrophic accidents. In a separate case, a worker died when struck by a piece of storm sewer pipe that fell from a forklift as it was being unloaded at the project site.
Coming into contact with electricity is another major risk associated with construction projects. Working at heights often increases the dangers of coming into contact with overhead power lines. For instance, a Missouri man working on a boom lift died after he struck a high voltage power line while installing siding on an apartment complex. Other electrical dangers at construction sites include exposed electrical parts or equipment with damaged cords or that lack grounding pins. Wet conditions along with improperly grounded power tools can easily lead to serious electrocution injuries.
Another common situation is when someone is caught in/between a trench collapse. Many projects require trenches such as sewer lines for a housing development project. If a trench wall collapses during work, injuries are catastrophic and oftentimes fatal. Sloping, shoring and shielding are the methods to prevent these accidents but they do happen. If you or someone you love has been seriously injured in a construction accident, contact a workers’ compensation attorney. Seeking the advice of an attorney is one way to ensure you receive all the benefits to which you are entitled and receive enough time off to fully recuperate from the injury.