Common Causes of Construction Accidents
According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) 4,821 workers were killed on the job in 2014 alone. That averages out to more than 92 deaths per week, and 13 deaths per day; 20.5 percent of those deaths occurred within the construction industry, and were a result of what OSHA deems the “Fatal Four”: falls, electrocution, struck by an object, and caught-in/between. These Fatal Four accident types were the cause of 60.6 percent of the total construction accident deaths.
In addition to the Fatal Four, the following factors also pose a major risk to workers in the construction industry:
- Unsafe working conditions that lead to slips and falls;
- Stairwells that are installed incorrectly, or that do not have handrails;
- Stepladders, which can tip over or collapse;
- Falls from roofs when no lifelines or fall protection are utilized;
- Failure to adhere to safety regulations when using scaffolding;
- Trenches and excavation walls that collapse when installed incorrectly;
- Power tool accidents, especially when eye and ear protection are not used;
- Improperly lifting heavy objects, leading to back and leg injuries;
- Dump trucks, forklifts, and other construction equipment.
What To Do in the Event of a Construction Accident Injury
Unfortunately, it can be difficult to file a successful workers compensation claim in Portland, or to receive the full amount of damages that you filed for. At Johnston Law Firm, P.C., we recommend contacting a Portland personal injury attorney right away, as an experienced lawyer can help you navigate workers compensation laws, file the proper paperwork, and ensure that your case is handled in the most professional and effective manner possible.
After contacting an experienced construction accident lawyer, we recommend doing the following:
- Get Independent Medical Attention. In the event of a construction accident injury, your employer will likely offer you immediate, on-site medical attention. While you should accept the proffered care, you should not rely on the on-site medical expert’s diagnosis of your injury to be enough for your claim. An on-site medical expert likely has the best interests of the company in mind, so it would be in your best interest to seek the opinion of an independent, objective physician regarding your condition. Both medical evaluations should be admitted as evidence.
- Ask for copies of all documentation regarding your injury claim and your medical records. There is a lot of paperwork involved in filing a workers compensation claim, including your medical records. In order for a construction accident attorney to assist you with your workers compensation claim, they will need access to all of the documentation and medical records so that they may build a successful case in your favor. Be sure to retain copies of everything so that you can give it to your attorney when the time calls for it.
- Do not sign anything without consulting with your lawyer first. Many employers who face a workers compensation claim try to get the injured employee to sign a number of documents at once in the hopes that the employee does not read every single one of them. Do not do this. Hidden in that stack of papers could be a waiver protecting your employer from liability, or a statement that places responsibility solely on you. Do not sign anything until you and your lawyer have reviewed each document in detail.
Consult a Portland, OR Construction Accident Lawyer
At Johnston Law Firm, P.C., our Portland, OR construction accident attorney can assist you in filing a successful workers compensation claim in the event that you are injured in a construction accident. To schedule a free consultation, contact Johnston Law Firm, P.C. at 503-546-3167 or fill out our free confidential case evaluation form. Our hours are flexible by appointment.
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