Construction workers face a wide range of dangerous conditions on a daily basis. Regular hazards include being struck by falling, flying, rolling, and swinging objects or debris. In fact, these “struck-by” accidents have been determined by OSHA to be among the top fatal four safety hazards on job sites — and the second highest cause of fatalities for those who work in the construction industry. If you were injured or lost a loved one due to a construction struck-by accident, you may be entitled to obtain monetary recovery beyond Workers’ Compensation benefits by filing a personal injury lawsuit.
Common Causes of Construction Struck-By Accidents
In a struck-by accident, injuries are caused by the impact of an object, heavy equipment, or construction materials. These types of accidents usually take a worker by surprise, and they can result in serious injuries, debilitation, and disability. The force of a flying, rolling, swinging, or falling object can cause a wide variety of injuries, including broken bones, fractures, soft tissue damage, concussion, traumatic brain injury, amputation, nerve damage, paralysis, disfigurement, and fatality. These types of injuries often require extensive medical treatment, result in a substantial amount of time lost from work, and significantly impact a victim’s quality of life.
Construction struck-by accidents are commonly caused by the following:
- Failure to observe bystanders when operating a construction vehicle
- Propelled or thrown objects and debris
- Poorly secured construction materials
- Improperly loaded materials
- Compressed air
- Nail gun discharges
- Poor housekeeping on the job site
- Improperly stacked materials
- Failure to provide proper training
- Lack of personal protective equipment
Construction site safety measures must be taken to protect workers from struck-by accidents. This can involve providing workers with adequate training, the necessary safety equipment, and ensuring the job site is properly maintained. Importantly, strict liability can be imposed on an owner or contractor under Labor Law 240 for injuries caused by falling objects resulting from a lack of safety precautions or failure to provide personal protective equipment.
Compensation for Struck-By Accidents
If you were hurt in a struck-by accident on a construction site, you may be able to obtain Workers’ Compensation benefits to cover your medical treatment and a certain amount of your lost wages. But these benefits may not cover the full extent of your monetary losses They also do not compensate for the pain and suffering you may have experienced. Although a worker cannot sue their employer due to New York’s Workers’ Compensation laws, you may still be able to hold a third-party accountable for your losses.
If the negligence, carelessness, or recklessness of a third party on a construction site caused your struck-by injuries, you may be entitled to recover your economic and non-economic damages in a personal injury action. Economic damages can include unreimbursed medical costs, lost wages, and out-of-pocket expenses incurred in connection with the accident. Non-economic damages are meant to compensate for the intangible losses you suffered, such as the physical pain, emotional anguish, and loss of enjoyment of life caused by the accident-related injury.
In the event you lost a loved one in a construction struck-by accident, you may be eligible to file a wrongful death lawsuit, in addition to receiving death benefits from Workers’ Compensation. By pursuing a wrongful death action, you may be able to recover for the loss of income your family suffered due to your loved one’s death and compensation to cover the medical care they received. You might also be able to recover punitive damages in cases involving gross negligence.
Contact an Experienced New York Personal Injury Attorney
If you were injured on a construction site in a struck-by accident, you may be able to recover compensation for your losses. An experienced personal injury attorney can fight for your rights and obtain the compensation you deserve. The Dearie Law Firm, P.C. has represented victims of construction site accidents for over three decades and works to secure the best possible results in each of 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.