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The Shelton Law Firm

Construction Accidents and Heavy Equipment

By Michael Shelton on June 23, 2018

Heavy equipment at a construction siteWhen construction accidents occur in the Houston, TX, our law firm can offer much needed legal counsel. Our legal team understands the lasting impact of a construction accident, particularly those that involve heavy equipment.

The injuries sustained from a heavy equipment accident can range from broken bones and contusions to catastrophic injuries that lead to lifelong disability or disfigurement. Since many accidents can involve pinching, crunching, or being caught between objects, there’s a risk of losing a limb in these kinds of accidents. Head trauma and brain damage may also occur, as well as serious injuries to the neck, back and spine.

Statistics on Heavy Equipment Accidents

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), vehicles including heavy equipment are a major source of injuries to construction workers. Vehicles overall caused 7,600 deaths between 1992 and 2010, an average of 404 deaths annually. The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) estimates that up to half of all industry-related injuries could be linked to the use of heavy equipment and mobile machinery.

The vast majority (80 percent) of heavy equipment fatalities occur among construction crews working on roads, bridges, and highways. Heavy equipment injuries are also likely among people who work in oil and gas extraction, mining, agriculture, and manufacturing.

Negligence While Operating Heavy Equipment

If a person is not well-trained in the operation of certain kinds of heavy equipment, this greatly increases the chances of an injury occurring. The vehicle may strike other workers at a construction site, or it could fall over or tip over, resulting in a severe injury to the person operating the equipment.

Problems with the Heavy Equipment

In some cases, the heavy equipment issues are related to the vehicle itself. Perhaps the heavy equipment has not bee properly serviced, resulting in unsafe conditions when it is operated normally. There might even be design or manufacturing defects to consider, meaning that the heavy equipment is inherently dangerous due to negligence by the company that made it.

Unsafe Conditions at the Worksite

Countless factors can lead to unsafe conditions at a worksite. Poor weather, for instance, can result in greater risk of the heavy equipment falling over, or perhaps even causing the softened ground beneath the vehicle to collapse in some fashion, filling a ditch with soil or causing materials to fall into a work area.

Issues with Worker’s Compensation Benefits

For people injured by heavy equipment, worker’s compensation benefits can be crucial for getting back on your feet. Sadly, legitimate claims may go rejected, requiring an appeal to receive some compensation as you recuperate from injury.

When you are denied a worker’s compensation claim, our team can help you with the appeal process. Having a legal professional aid in this can expedite matters and prevent further delays in processing your claim.

Is the Construction Company Legally Liable?

In a number of cases, accidents could have been avoided if certain safety measures and standards were followed. If you feel that a construction company made their workers operate in unsafe conditions, they may be legally liable for the accident.

Whether you’re an injured worker or the surviving family of a construction worker who died in a heavy equipment accident, we are here for you. We can discuss these matters with you in greater detail during a legal consultation.

Speak with an Experienced Attorney

For more information about your legal rights and options after a construction accident, be sure to contact The Shelton Law Firm. We will help you in your time of legal need, offering much-needed assistance during the entire legal process.

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