For more than 25 years, the construction accident attorneys of Roberts & Roberts have been representing people in Texas and across the nation who have been injured in construction site accidents. Roberts & Roberts has established a national reputation for representing clients in significant personal injury matters. The firm has been featured on dozens of television programs, including Fox and Friends, ABC Good Morning America, CNN, MSNBC, Fox Business News, CNBC, and NBC’s Dateline. They have also been featured in national magazines, including Time and Newsweek.
If you or a loved one has been injured in a construction accident, the workplace accident lawyers and staff at Roberts & Roberts can help you recover money for lost wages and the medical treatment you need, as well as other expenses. Roberts & Roberts has a legal team ready to assist you in recovering workers’ compensation benefits and holding any at-fault third parties accountable.
Contact us now at 903-597-6000 or fill out our online contact form. The call costs you nothing … and it could mean. We serve clients in Waco, Beaumont, Lufkin, Texarkana, Tyler and Longview, as well as throughout East Texas and across the state.
About Texas Construction Accidents
Construction sites can be dangerous to both construction workers and the general public. Equipment may fall and hit bystanders. Employees themselves may fall or be electrocuted. Chemical exposure may harm those in and around construction zones. Buildings and other structures may collapse. And construction equipment and vehicles may be involved in auto accidents.
Workers’ compensation helps injured workers by providing them with financial support for medical bills and lost wages suffered as a result of an on-the-job injury, but it is not always available. Members of the general public, subcontractors, independent contractors and other non-employees may not qualify for these benefits.
Even when they do qualify for benefits, they may also have a claim against a third party, such as a general contractor. Additionally, the manufacturers of construction site equipment may be responsible for construction injuries in a products liability lawsuit when machinery they designed or built fails. If you have suffered an injury resulting from a construction accident, you may be entitled to receive compensation for medical expenses, disfigurement, physical impairment, lost wages and pain.
Common Types of Texas Construction Injuries
Listed below are some of the more common types of construction injuries that could entitle you to Texas workers’ compensation benefits or damages in a lawsuit against a negligent third party.
- Falls: Whether workers are building a two-story home or a downtown high-rise, heights pose a constant threat to most people who work construction. Regulations require companies to take steps to prevent falls from happening and reduce their severity if they do. At any time when workers are exposed to falls of six feet or more, OSHA requires contractors to provide one of the following forms of protection: guardrails; safety nets; or personal fall-arrest systems such as harnesses and lifelines. Fall accidents frequently result when management fails to make sure the required safety devices are properly installed, inspected and maintained.
- Scaffold collapses: Workers rely on scaffolds to allow them to perform tasks on walls, windows and other building components above ground level. According to OSHA figures, scaffold accidents injure about 4,500 American construction workers each year and result in the death of 50 more. Improperly constructed and maintained scaffolds can injure workers due to unsteady footings, inability to bear the load, weak or damaged hardware and loosely connected parts.
- Excavation and trench collapses: In order to prevent workers from being buried alive in a trench or excavation collapse, regulations set strict mandates for companies to prevent catastrophic earthen support failures.Tragically, contractors don’t always follow those rules like they should. The fatality rate for excavation work is more than double the rate for general construction, according to OSHA figures.
- Falling objects: People working in trenches and excavations also face the danger of tools, materials and other objects falling onto them from above. In fact, all workers face these risks whenever other employees are working overhead. One way to prevent materials from falling onto workers is to install toe boards on scaffolds. Contractors all too frequently neglect this safety step. In situations where there is a high risk of objects falling from heights, it could also be advisable for the contractor to set up a net to catch them. Workers should never be allowed to walk under a load that is being lifted by a crane or other type of hoist. Simple housekeeping can also go along way toward preventing injuries from falling objects. If worksites are not free of debris, there is a high likelihood that objects could be knocked onto lower levels, striking workers.
- Unsafe equipment: All construction sites are home to a variety of heavy equipment that can include cranes, trucks, pneumatic tools, jackhammers, welding rigs and more. It is the contractors’ responsibility to inspect and maintain all equipment, including their safeguards.OSHA requires all saws, drills, nail guns and other dangerous tools to be equipped with guards and safeties, and contractors must not permit safety features to be bypassed. OSHA regulations require contractors to retrofit appropriate guards and safety devices to older equipment.
- Insufficient inspection and maintenance: OSHA regulations bar contractors from allowing employees to work in conditions that are unsanitary, hazardous or dangerous to their health or safety. It is the contractor’s duty to make sure a worksite meets OSHA standards and is safe. The defense that workers “consented” to such conditions is not effective. Electrocutions can result from sub-standard maintenance of power tools and failure to properly mark live electric lines. Improperly marked gas lines or failure to monitor the presence of combustible gases can set the stage for deadly explosions or fires. Improper handling of toxic substances like asbestos can also create health hazards for workers.
- Improper training: Contractors have a duty to ensure that workers are properly trained on how to use the equipment on the site, that they understand how to use safety features and that they know how to effectively avoid or minimize workplace injuries. When contractors fail to train their workers, everyone on the jobsite is in danger.
Trades Frequently Involved In Texas Construction Accidents
According to NIOSH, workers in the following trades are particularly susceptible to construction site accidents:
- Truck drivers
- Welders and cutters
- Construction laborers
- Drywall installers
- Brick and block masons
- Plasterers and stucco masons
Certain trades are unquestionably more dangerous than others, but a severe construction accident can happen to anyone on the worksite — even people who don’t usually perform manual labor, like supervisors, architects and project managers. Visitors and even people passing by a construction site can suffer an injury when something goes wrong.
Do I Need A Lawyer To Handle My Construction Accident Case?
It’s not necessary to hire lawyer for every construction accident, but you should always consult with a qualified construction accident attorney if you are injured on a jobsite. At Roberts & Roberts the initial consultation is always free. There is never a charge unless we are successful and obtain compensation for you.
In addition to workers’ compensation benefits, you might also be able to recover from a third party (not your employer) if they were negligent in causing your construction accident. A skilled personal injury attorney like those at Roberts & Roberts can thoroughly analyze your case and find any potential source of recovery to ensure you get the full compensation you deserve.