Thousands of construction workers are hurt on the job each year — and many of these accidents are entirely preventable. While some injuries may arise due to the dangerous nature of construction work, others occur because of housekeeping hazards and unsafe worksite conditions. Although Workers’ Compensation may provide certain benefits to workers who have been hurt, it is rarely enough to cover the full extent of a worker’s monetary and non-monetary losses. If you suffered an injury due to poor housekeeping on a construction site, you may be able to hold a third party accountable for your damages by filing a personal injury action.
Accidents Caused by Poor Housekeeping on Construction Sites
Poor housekeeping on construction sites broadly refers to the failure to maintain a safe workplace adequately. Unsafe conditions that can arise in connection with poor housekeeping can result from untidiness, improper disposal of debris, tools left in the open, exposed wires, and improperly labeled chemicals. Lack of proper housekeeping can also conceal certain hazards that would normally be visible to workers, such as oil and grease spills.
Hazards caused by poor housekeeping on construction sites can result in a variety of accidents, including:
- Trip and falls — When debris, tools, materials, and other objects are not removed and properly stored, they can cause trip and fall accidents.
- Slip and falls — If liquid spills are not mopped, or oil spills are not cleaned, slip and fall accidents can arise.
- Falling objects — Items and materials that are not properly stored can fall from above, causing serious injury to workers.
- Fires — Fires can result when flammable materials and liquids are not properly stored or disposed of.
- Electrocution — Electrical cords not in good condition or stored correctly can cause electrocution hazards.
Depending on the circumstances surrounding the accident, a worker may suffer a wide range of injuries due to poor housekeeping on a construction site. Injuries can include lacerations, broken bones, nerve damage, traumatic brain injury, paralysis, permanent disability, and disfiguration. A worker may require extensive medical treatment for these types of injuries and lose significant time from work. In these situations, holding the responsible party legally accountable for their negligence is vital.
Liability for Injuries Caused by Construction Site Housekeeping Hazards
Housekeeping hazards on construction sites can lead to various serious and life-changing injuries. They can also cause substantial economic loss. Although a construction worker is typically barred from suing their employer for their damages due to New York’s Workers’ Compensation laws, many third parties on a construction site might bear responsibility.
For instance, if a general contractor or subcontractor fails to follow good housekeeping practices in accordance with New York State Labor Law and the applicable OSHA regulations, they may be held liable in a personal injury action. The responsible party may also be held to answer for any OSHA violations in connection with poor housekeeping on the construction site.
If a third party’s negligence is established, an injured construction worker may be entitled to recover their economic and non-economic damages. Economic damages that may be awarded can include compensation for things like unreimbursed medical bills, lost wages, future lost earnings, and out-of-pocket expenses. Non-economic damages, which are also called “pain and suffering” damages, are meant to compensate a worker for the physical pain and the emotional suffering they experienced due to the accident. Pain and suffering comprise the largest portion of a victim’s personal injury settlement.
Contact an Experienced New York Personal Injury Attorney
If you were hurt on a construction site because of poor housekeeping, you may be eligible to recover compensation for your losses. A knowledgeable personal injury attorney can advocate for your rights and fight for the compensation you deserve. The Dearie Law Firm, P.C. has represented victims of construction site accidents for over three decades and works to obtain the best possible results in their unique cases.
The Dearie Law Firm, P.C. has convenient office locations in Manhattan, the Bronx, and Brooklyn, as well as mobile locations serving Brooklyn, Queens, Manhattan, the Bronx, Staten Island, Westchester County, Rockland County, Nassau County, and Suffolk County. Contact us today for a consultation.