Heavy machinery is widely used in the construction industry. Construction accident statistics show that worksite accidents involving heavy machinery account for a significant number of serious injuries and deaths. Heavy construction equipment such as trucks are a factor in construction accidents that result in catastrophic injuries. There are a number of reasons why these types of accidents occur and often, workers are not to blame.
Many factors involving negligence on the part of third parties cause or contribute to these types of devastating heavy machinery accidents at construction sites. If you or a loved one has been injured in a construction accident involving heavy machinery, our local Los Angeles work injury lawyers at Greenberg and Ruby Injury Attorneys, APC can help you better understand your legal rights and options.
Key Points - Table of Contents
- Types of Machinery Are Involved in Construction Accidents?
- Common Types of Construction Machinery Accidents
- Common Causes of Construction Machinery Accidents
- What Injuries are Caused by Heavy Machinery?
- Third Party Claims
- Getting Help After a Construction Machinery Accident
Types of Machinery Are Involved in Construction Accidents?
There are a number of different types of machinery and equipment that are used in construction including:
- Back-end and front-end loaders
- Cherry pickers
- Dump trucks
Common Types of Construction Machinery Accidents
Here are some of the most common types of construction accidents involving heavy machinery:
Falls: Falling from a piece of equipment or machinery is one of the most common types of accidents in a construction site. The cabs of a lot of the heavy equipment at construction sites are at a higher elevation and when an operator or worker falls from those heights, devastating injuries could occur.
Struck-by accidents: These are incidents where a worker is struck by a truck or other type of heavy machinery or equipment. Construction site accidents where laborers are struck by a swinging crane or load carried by equipment are also common.
Electrocution: Live power lines in or near a worksite is a real risk that is not always apparent to workers on a job site. Construction companies and supervisors have a responsibility to scout a worksite and make sure workers are safe and away from live power lines. When machinery encounters power lines, workers who are operating the machinery or in it could get electrocuted.
Crushing accidents: When workers are operating or working near heavy machinery, there is the risk of getting caught in or between machines or machine parts. When a piece of equipment or machinery rolls over workers could get crushed underneath.
Common Causes of Construction Machinery Accidents
Most construction machinery accidents are not freak incidents. These accidents often occur because of negligence on the part of one or more parties and because of unsafe practices at a worksite. These include not providing proper training or safety equipment for employees and poor maintenance of equipment and machinery. Here are some of the most common causes of machinery accidents at construction sites:
Lack of proper communication: When equipment operators and workers don't have proper training on how to work together, it is likely that they don't have proper communication which could lead to tragic accidents.
Lack of personal protective equipment: Lack of protective equipment ranging from fall safety devices (harnesses, guardrails and safety nets) to hard hats, goggles, boots and gloves may cause serious injuries. Protective equipment is also important for the safety of workers operating heavy machines such as lathes, mixes and drill presses.
Lack of equipment safety features: When machinery does not have safety features such as backup alarms, sensors, mirrors, seatbelts or horns that are supposed to alert workers about moving machinery, devastating accidents could occur. Machine guards also play an important part in preventing caught in/between accidents.
Poor equipment maintenance: While heavy machinery could have safety features, they may not be effective if they are not properly maintained. Construction companies, contractors and other responsible parties have a duty to perform routine inspections and maintenance of all machinery at the site. Learn more about construction equipment accidents here.
What Injuries are Caused by Heavy Machinery?
Unfortunately, heavy machinery accidents in construction sites result in fatal injuries. They also result in severe injuries that could lead to long-term or lifelong disabilities, which prevent workers from returning to their jobs or even making a livelihood. Here are just a few examples of injuries suffered in construction machinery accidents:
- Traumatic brain injury or head injuries
- Soft tissue injuries
- Herniated discs
- Amputation or loss of limbs
- Broken bones or fractures
- Burn injuries
- Lacerations and severe blood loss
- Spinal cord injuries
- Internal organ damage
What we do know about a lot of these injuries is that they are costly to treat, could result in hospitalization, might require surgery and lengthy time off from work. That is why injured workers would be well advised to seek the counsel of an experienced Los Angeles work injury lawyer to fully explore all of their options.
You can view some of the most common construction injuries here.
Third Party Claims
In addition to seeking workers' compensation, workers injured in construction machinery accidents may also be able to file a third party claim against a negligent party other than the employer who may have caused or contributed to the accident. Examples of third parties include general contractors, sub-contractors, property owners, manufacturers of defective equipment or parts, etc. Third party claims are worth significantly more than workers' compensation benefits because injured workers may be able to seek additional damages including pain and suffering through these claims.
Getting Help After a Construction Machinery Accident
If you or a loved one has been injured in a construction machinery accident, our local Los Angeles construction accident attorney at Greenberg and Ruby Injury Attorneys, APC can help you better understand your legal rights and options. We have a long and successful track record of handling complex construction accident cases and helping severely injured clients secure maximum compensation for their tremendous losses. Call us today to schedule a free consultation and case evaluation.