Painters on construction sites in New York can face a risk of serious injury and fatality. Not only do painters often work at significant heights, but they are also regularly exposed to toxic chemicals, electrical hazards, and poor weather conditions. While a painter who is injured on the job might be entitled to Workers’ Compensation for their medical expenses and lost wages, they may also be able to pursue a personal injury action against a negligent third party.
Common Hazards Faced by Painters
Painters can be hurt on construction sites in various ways. They may sustain repetitive stress injuries such as tendinitis and carpal tunnel syndrome — as well as develop occupational illnesses such as lung cancer, kidney failure, and respiratory diseases due to inhaling toxic fumes. However, painters can also be injured as a result of carelessness, recklessness, or negligence if adequate safety measures are not taken and protective gear is not provided.
Some of the most common hazards faced by painters on construction sites can include the following:
- Slip and falls — Slip and falls can be caused by hazardous conditions such as dripping paint, slippery surfaces, and the use of wrong ladders.
- Falls from ladders — When an incorrect ladder is used, or a ladder is poorly maintained, falls can occur that cause serious injuries.
- Scaffold collapses — Painters often perform their tasks at heights using scaffolds. When scaffolds are overloaded or poorly constructed, they can collapse, resulting in severe injury or fatality.
- Falling objects — Falling objects are among the most common dangers on construction sites. When objects are not properly secured, they can fall from overhead, injuring workers who are performing their tasks below.
- Dangers posed by combustible materials — Paint is considered a flammable and combustible material. It’s crucial for painters to be able to perform their job in an area where they won’t be subject to explosions or other fatal risks.
- Electrical hazards — Painters often carry out their tasks near wires and can risk electrocution if proper precautions aren’t taken.
- Toxic substance exposure — When painters aren’t provided with respirators and other appropriate safety gear, they can face a serious risk of injury due to toxic substance exposure.
Painting accidents that have occurred due to falls or being struck by a falling object can result in head injuries, spinal cord injuries, broken bones, contusions, sprains, brain injury, permanent disability, and paralysis. Critically, painters can also face eye injuries if they are not provided with the proper goggles or face shields. These types of injuries can require extensive medical treatment, including surgery and physical therapy. They can also cause a painter to lose time from work.
Compensation for Painter Injuries on Construction Sites
Although a painter who was injured on the job cannot sue their employer because of New York’s Workers’ Compensation laws, they may still be eligible to commence a lawsuit against a third party who was responsible for their injuries. For example, if a general contractor, subcontractor, property owner, or other third party was negligent in some way, they might be held accountable for a painter’s injuries in a personal injury action.
In addition, there is a specific law in place — Labor Law Section 240 — that requires workers be provided with the protective equipment they need to safely perform their tasks. It also holds a building owner or contractor strictly liable for injuries caused by falls.
By prevailing in a personal injury action, a painter who was hurt at work may be able to recover compensation for medical expenses that were not covered by Workers’ Compensation, out-of-pocket costs in connection with their medical treatment, and lost wages. An injured painter may also be entitled to an award of non-economic damages for the pain and suffering they experienced due to their injuries.
Contact an Experienced New York Personal Injury Attorney
If you’re a painter who sustained injuries in an accident on a job site, you may be entitled to compensation in a personal injury lawsuit. It’s essential to have a skilled personal injury attorney by your side who can help you secure the monetary recovery you deserve. The attorneys at the Dearie Law Firm, P.C. are committed to fighting for the rights of painters and other workers injured on construction sites and aggressively pursue the maximum compensation available in each client’s unique case.
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 County, Rockland County, Nassau County, and Suffolk County. Contact us today for a consultation.