Iron and steelworkers have some of the most dangerous jobs on construction sites. Whether they are constructing steel frames, installing iron beams, welding, reinforcing concrete, operating cranes, or repairing infrastructure elements, the duties of steel and ironworkers are physically demanding. Unfortunately, if precautions aren’t taken and proper safety gear isn’t provided, accidents can occur that result in serious injuries. Although workers can’t sue their employers because of New York’s Workers’ Compensation laws, a third party may still be held liable in a personal injury lawsuit for negligence.
Construction Site Accident Injuries Suffered by Iron and Steelworkers
Iron and steelworkers engage in a wide array of hazardous tasks on the job. Significantly, the type of work they carry out can involve processes that come with substantial safety risks. For example, iron and steelworkers can suffer third-degree burns from welding, suffer injuries due to falling from elevated heights, or be struck by falling objects. Iron and steelworkers can also be caught in between objects, fall through unstable flooring, or suffer illness as a result of exposure to harmful chemicals and fumes.
Common injuries sustained by iron and steelworkers on construction sites can include:
- Broken bones and fractures — These types of injuries are commonly suffered by iron and steelworkers who fall from heights. However, falls can also occur on the ground due to tripping over construction site debris or unattended tools.
- Crush injuries — Crush injuries can happen when a body part is pinned beneath the weight of a heavy object or crushed between two objects.
- Impalement — Impalement is a serious risk on construction sites for workers who come into contact with sharp projections, unguarded ends of rebar, or forklift tines.
- Soft tissue injuries — Iron and steelworkers can sustain soft tissue injuries if they are not provided with the proper equipment to move heavy loads or perform manual labor.
- Amputation — Sharp objects and equipment such as power tools or metal shears used to cut iron and steel can result in severe lacerations or amputation.
- Electrocution — Electrocution is among the top hazards faced by construction workers and can be caused by direct or indirect contact with live wiring and electrical equipment.
- Fatality — In severe cases, injuries sustained by iron and steelworkers on construction sites can result in fatality.
Safety equipment and adequate training are critical to minimizing workplace accidents and injuries. New York Labor Law mandates these protections for all construction workers, including iron and steelworkers. If an owner, general contractor, subcontractor, or other party has violated the labor law, they may be held liable for a worker’s injuries under the theory of negligence per se.
Liability and Compensation for Iron and Steelworker Injuries
Iron and steelworkers who were injured on the job may be entitled to have their medical bills and a portion of their lost wages covered by Workers’ Compensation — but this is rarely enough to cover the full extent of their economic loss. Workers’ Compensation also does not cover non-economic losses. While Workers’ Compensation bars an iron or steelworker from commencing a personal injury lawsuit against their employer, a claim may still be filed against another responsible party to obtain the fullest extent of the monetary recovery allowable by law.
Depending on the facts of the accident, third parties who may be held accountable for iron or steelworker injuries on a worksite might include property owners, contractors, engineers, architects, or equipment manufacturers. By filing a personal injury claim against one or more of these parties, an injured worker may be entitled to recover their economic and non-economic losses suffered due to the accident.
Recoverable economic losses in a personal injury action can include medical expenses that were not reimbursed through Workers’ Compensation, lost wages, and out-of-pocket expenses incurred in connection with medical treatment. Non-economic damages are meant to compensate for the pain and suffering and loss of enjoyment of life suffered due to the accident.
Contact an Experienced New York Personal Injury Attorney
If you are an ironworker or steelworker who has sustained injuries on the job due to the negligence of another, you may be entitled to file a personal injury lawsuit to recover your monetary and non-monetary losses. The Dearie Law Firm, P.C. has more than three decades of experience fighting for the rights of workers injured on construction sites and securing the compensation they deserve.
The Dearie Law Firm, P.C. has convenient office locations in Manhattan, Brooklyn, and the Bronx, as well as mobile locations serving Brooklyn, Queens, Manhattan, the Bronx, Staten Island, Westchester, Rockland County, Nassau County, and Suffolk County. Contact us today for a consultation.