Construction is constant in New York City. With so many construction companies operating seemingly nonstop, one would think that these businesses would be able to avoid workplace injuries. Sadly, this isn’t the case. Individuals are hurt all the time in workplace accidents. When a construction accident results in harm, the damages can be significant, too. Lost wages and medical expenses can leave an injured worker unsure of where to turn for help, and he or she may be overwhelmed with the financial realities of his or her situation.
One way that these construction accidents occur is through scaffolding falls. Statistics show that 65 percent of the construction industry, which equates to more than two million workers, perform their job duties on scaffolding. Every year approximately 4,500 individuals are hurt while working on scaffolding, and another 60 are killed. Nearly three-quarters of these injuries are caused by scaffolding collapsing, employees slipping or objects falling onto workers.
Of course, OSHA has implemented a number of regulations regarding scaffolding in hopes of preventing worker injury and deaths. The sad reality, though, is that far too many employers fail to live up to these standards, oftentimes by failing to provide appropriate training or safety equipment. However, even those whose employers are in compliance with OSHA regulations can potentially recover compensation for their harm if they are injured on the job.
Although third-party negligence lawsuits are often justified in these situations, more often than not a workers’ compensation claim is the best route. If successful on one of these claims, an injured worker can recover money to help offset lost wages and medical expenses. However, certain legal elements must be proven before benefits can be awarded, which is why those who have been injured in a construction accident should discuss how best to approach their case with an experienced legal professional. Discussing such matters may not only help build a workers’ compensation claim, but it might lead to a better determination as to whether an additional third-party claim is warranted.