Crane accidents in construction sites have the potential to cause devastating injuries and even fatalities. These giant machines need trained operators who have the knowledge, skill and experience to operate this type of equipment. In some cases, negligence on behalf of the project site manager or vehicle operators can cause accidents that result in major injuries or fatalities. Cranes also carry enormous loads, which when dropped could cause a catastrophic accident.
If you or a loved one has been injured in a crane accident or if you have lost a loved one in a worksite crane accident, please remember that you have legal rights. The experienced crane accident lawyers at Greenberg & Ruby LLP can help you seek and obtain maximum compensation for your tremendous losses.
Filing a Crane Accident Lawsuit
Filing a crane accident lawsuit seeking compensation for injuries suffered in a crane accident could depend on where and how the incident occurred. If the accident victim was on the job at the time, workers' comp may cover the incident. However, workers' compensation only covers a portion of the workers' losses. It doesn't even come close to giving the worker and his or her family fair and full compensation for their tremendous losses.
In such cases, the worker or the injured victim or "plaintiff" files a lawsuit against the defendant or the negligent party for damages. As with any personal injury lawsuit, the plaintiff or the injured victim has the burden of proof to show that the defendants' negligence or wrongdoing caused their injuries and damages.
If the plaintiff wins the case, the defendant will be held liable for the victim's damages. If you are not sure whether or not you can file a crane accident lawsuit after a crane accident, please talk to an experienced Los Angeles crane accident lawyer who can help explain your legal rights and options.
Compensation in Crane Accident Lawsuits
Victims who have been injured in crane accident lawsuits can seek compensation for both economic and noneconomic damages sustained in the accident.
Economic damages: These are damages that compensate workers for the monetary losses they have sustained due to the injuries. These types of damages might include medical expenses, lost income, hospitalization, cost of rehabilitation, and other types of expenses such as cost of household services, which the injured victim may not be able to render as he or she is recovering from injuries. Economic damages can be calculated using documentation such as bills, salary statements and invoices that provide a clear picture of the expenses incurred by the victim as the direct result of the crane accident injury.
Noneconomic damages: These are the types of damages on which you cannot put a specific price. Examples of noneconomic damages include loss of earning capacity, lost future income, past and future pain and suffering and emotional distress. It is important to remember that workers' comp benefits do not include compensation for such losses, which are very real and palpable to injured workers and their families. An experienced crane accident lawyer will be able to estimate the noneconomic damages sustained by injured victims and their families.
Punitive damages: These types of damages are sometimes awarded in crane accident lawsuits, especially in cases where the negligence or wrongdoing on the part of the defendant is particularly egregious or outrageous. Punitive damages are different because they are not meant to compensate the victim. Their specific purpose is to punish the defendant and deter such behavior in the future.
Third Parties Who Can Be Sued for Crane Accidents
Apart from your employer, there are a number of third parties who can be held liable for injuries or fatalities triggered by a crane accident. Negligent parties can be held liable with a personal injury lawsuit for resulting damages. Negligence refers to failure to act with the level of care with which someone would have reasonably acted under similar circumstances. Here are some of the third parties who could be named as defendants in a crane accident lawsuit:
Construction companies: Corporations or general contractors that are in charge of a project site that fail to follow safety rules and provide training and safety gear to workers can be held liable for a catastrophic crane accident.
Contractors and sub-contractors: A construction site functions with a number of companies and individuals that contract and sub-contract with the project management company. Failure on the part of a contractor charged with rigging, supervision or operation of the crane that results in an accident and injury means they could be held liable for damages.
Construction inspection firms: A lot of crane safety hinges on inspection to make sure that the rigging is done properly and that the crane is safe and in good condition to be used. Inspection firms are often tasked with this work. If their negligence in failing to perform a proper inspection and evaluation causes a devastating crane accident, these companies could be held responsible as well.
Property owners: In cases where negligent property owners fail to maintain a safe environment, property owners and/or managers could be held liable for the injuries, damages and losses caused.
Crane manufacturers: Defective or malfunctioning cranes are among common causes for crane collapses. If a crane accident was caused by a defective crane or a crane that has faulty parts, the manufacturer of the crane and/or the defective parts can be held responsible for the damages and losses.
Crane Accident Lawyers in Los Angeles
If you or a loved one has been injured in a crane accident, or if you have lost a loved one to a tragic accident, the experienced Los Angeles crane accident lawyers at Greenberg & Ruby LLP are here to help you better understand your legal rights and options. If you have been injured, it is important that you report the incident to your supervisor, secure prompt medical attention, treatment and care and contact us early on in the process so we can help you every step of the way. We will remain on your side, fight for your rights and help you secure fair and full compensation for all your losses. Call us at (323) 782-0535 for a free consultation and comprehensive case evaluation.