Serving all of Massachusetts and the South Shore, including Quincy, Brockton, and Plymouth
Wide ranges of workers use scaffolding and ladders while on the job. Construction workers, window washers, painters, electricians, and roofers all have to climb to great heights to perform their jobs. Unfortunately, these jobs can be very risky. In fact, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has estimated that there are more than 4,5000 scaffolding-related construction accidents per year in the United States, with 60 reported deaths. Similarly, 164,000 workers are injured in ladder-related accidents per year, with 300 reported deaths. This gives the United States the status of most ladder deaths in the world.
If you have to work on scaffolding or with ladders, it’s important for you to know your legal rights if you ever get into an accident. Will your employer be responsible for your injuries? Will you receive compensation for lost wages? What happens if you become permanently disabled? These questions and more can be answered by one of our Massachusetts workers compensation lawyers, who will examine the specifics of your case to maximize your benefits.
What is Scaffolding?
Normally built with steel and metal, scaffolding is a temporary framing platform that allows workers to perform their duties at great heights. Construction workers, maintenance workers, and art restorers all make use of this essential piece of equipment. Because scaffolding is so complex, even one defective part can lead to collapses, buckling, and falls.
Causes of Scaffolding Accidents
Usually built at great heights, scaffolding poses dangerous risks for those that use it on a daily basis. This is because there are so many things that have the possibility of going wrong. Some common causes of scaffolding accidents include:
- Wet/slippery surfaces
- Defective safety equipment
- Old/broken scaffolding
- Collapse or buckling of scaffolding supports
- Scaffolding that was designed incorrectly offsite by the manufacturers
- Scaffolding that is incorrectly built on site
Scaffolding & Ladder Injuries
When you think of scaffolding and ladder injuries, you probably think of injuries, or even death, caused by falling from high elevations. But there are also many other ways to be injured by scaffolding and ladders, besides just falling. These include:
- Injuries caused by falling objects
- Scaffolding collapse
- Metal scaffolding electrocution caused by contact with power lines
These dangerous events can lead to a wide variety of injuries that can permanently change the way you live your life. The types of injuries caused by scaffolding and ladder accidents include, but are not limited to:
- Traumatic brain injury
- Neck, back, and spinal chord damage
- Broken bones
Since there are so many parties involved in a construction site, it can be difficult to determine who is liable for your injuries. Usually, the responsibility lies with the general contractor, but other parties, such as subcontractors, vendors, and manufacturers, may also be liable. Our workers’ compensation attorneys will figure out who is responsible by investigating the accident for Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) violations. These violations can include:
- Improperly built scaffolding
- Faulty safety straps
- Inadequate guardrails on scaffolding
- Noncompliance with safety regulations
- Unmarked hazards such as open holes
There is also a long list of OSHA regulations for ladder safety. These include a variety of rules for employees using ladders, as well as rules for specific types of ladders. These regulations include:
- Areas must be kept clear around the top and bottom of ladders
- Ladders must not be fastened together
- Ladders must be surfaced to avoid snagging on clothes and other objects while in use
Available Compensation for Scaffolding & Ladder Accidents
Contacting a Massachusetts scaffolding and ladder fall attorney will help you find out what kinds of compensation may be available in your specific case. Generally, your employer may be held responsible for:
- Medical expenses and rehabilitation
- Lost wages
- Lost future earnings
- Settlements for disabilities
Contact a Massachusetts Worker’s Compensation Lawyer
At Powers & Caccavale, we have the legal experience, determination, and dedication to make sure you receive the most compensation possible in your case. Because we know how insurance companies work, we are able to achieve great outcomes for our clients. If you or someone you love has been injured in a work-related scaffolding or ladder accident, get in touch with one of our workers’ compensation lawyers today.