The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) takes stock of how many people are injured on the job every single year. Of those, they have identified four common culprits as the source of most workplace injuries, with all of them being particularly prominent in the field of construction. The four most common types of injuries, as described by OSHA, are as follows:
- Injuries from falling
- By far the biggest source of workplace injuries comes simply from people falling from an elevated surface. On construction sites, this commonly takes the form of falling from scaffolding and ladders. However, falling injuries can happen in a number of different ways on construction sites. For example, walking up or down stairs may be categorized as a falling injury under some circumstances. Workplaces are generally required to have safety measures like guardrails or safety nets to ensure these kinds of accidents do not happen, but some workplaces will avoid these measures to save on costs or time.
- Struck-by injuries
- Struck-by injuries refer to any kind of harm that comes from someone being hurt by falling or flying objects. This could come from tools or parts being dropped from scaffolding on a construction site, or it could come from equipment breaking under stress and propelling shrapnel at someone. These injuries are not always predictable, but they can be protected against through measures like hard hats, protective goggles, and other safety equipment. When this safety equipment is not available, or is not provided by an employer, it substantially increases the risk that an employee will be injured.
- Caught-in-between injuries
- These injuries commonly occur whenever someone is caught inside, or between, an object that is able to crush them. This could include heavy materials that can topple over onto people, or it could include equipment with moving parts that can break limbs caught in the machinery. It could also include cave-ins caused by unstable architecture or the ground itself. Avoiding these kind of injuries requires regular inspections, as well as adequate warnings of potential hazards.
- Electrocution injuries
- Although they are not always seen as such, electrical equipment is a common and dangerous source of injury. Loose wires or exposed circuitry can very easily cause severe harm to anyone unfortunate enough to make contact with them while an electrical current is running through them. Special systems called lockout or tagout systems can mitigate this risk, as can insulated gloves and other protective equipment, but they are sometimes circumvented to save time or money. In the end, it is employees who wind up paying the price for employer negligence.
The personal injury attorneys at Georgaklis & Mallas, PLLC are experienced in representing clients who have been seriously injured, and the surviving family members of those who have been fatally injured, as the result of construction accidents. The firm’s accomplished personal injury lawyers strive to secure full and fair compensation for their injured clients. With law offices conveniently located in Brooklyn and Manhattan, their personal injury lawyers can vigorously represent clients throughout the metropolitan area, including in Brooklyn, Manhattan, Staten Island, the Bronx, Queens, and New Jersey. For more information or to schedule a free consultation, please call (718) 238-2400 or fill out our contact form.