Gravity causes more risks than falls alone at construction sites

On Behalf of | May 20, 2024 | Construction Accidents |

Construction professionals work in a field where there are numerous risks. Some of the biggest safety concerns relate to gravity, such as the risk of falling when working at a significant elevation. Employees are only one loose restraint or misstep away from a brain injury, broken bones or worse.

Rules for construction site safety prioritize the protection of those working at significant elevations multiple stories above the ground. The law in New York makes property owners and the companies representing them legally responsible for injuries related to a fall from a significant elevation.

Falls are not the only gravity-related incident that could lead to serious injuries at a New York construction site. Workers also have to be wary of falling objects ranging from tools to building materials.

Falling objects are a leading safety issue

Like falls, falling objects are among the top-reported causes of construction fatalities. There are rules requiring head protection on construction sites in part because of the possibility of materials falling. Blunt force trauma caused by objects falling onto a worker’s head could cause a brain injury or a spinal cord injury. Items that strike a worker elsewhere could cause lacerations or broken bones.

Theoretically, best practices require the use of tethers to keep heavy tools and other equipment in place when workers take objects up to a significant elevation. Unfortunately, many workers or companies routinely cut corners when transporting materials or tools to an elevated work site. The choices that they make could potentially lead to someone at a lower elevation on the same job site incurring significant injuries.

Construction site injuries often result from the mistake of a single employee, but a business might technically be liable for the incident. Under New York’s Scaffolding Law, workers can potentially seek compensation for gravity-related incidents that leave them injured and unable to work.

Some of the employees hurt by construction site incidents might qualify for workers’ compensation benefits. It can be very difficult for those in well-paid but physically-demanding professions to properly respond to an incident that injures them and reduces or eliminates their income.

Understanding the rules that govern construction accidents and having assistance when seeking compensation can make a major difference for workers with medical expenses and lost wages. Those who learn about their rights and get the proper support may have an easier time overcoming their injury-related challenges.