Working in construction is one of the most dangerous jobs you can have. Accidents on construction sites are extremely common, and these accidents often leave workers suffering from serious injuries. As a result, many construction workers find themselves in need of an experienced Miami construction accident lawyer.

10 Leading Causes of Construction Accidents & Injuries

While construction workers can get hurt in all types of accidents, some types of accidents are more common than others. Here are 10 of the most common causes of construction accidents in Miami:

1. Inadequate Fall Protection

According to the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), inadequate fall protection is the single most common cause of construction site accidents. Falls from roofs, scaffolds and other elevated areas often result in broken bones and other serious injuries. Failure to protect open stairwells and elevator shafts, failure to clean up slip and trip hazards and various other failures can lead to dangerous falls as well.

2. Inadequate Safety Equipment

Construction companies, contractors and subcontractors should ensure that their workers have access to adequate safety equipment. Unfortunately, they regularly fail to do so. In far too many cases, workers are expected to work without safety harnesses, hard hats, and other equipment they need to avoid serious on-the-job injuries.

In some cases, companies provide safety equipment that isn’t effective. They provide equipment that is worn out or that isn’t rated for the level of risk their workers face on the job. Both mistakes—failing to provide safety equipment and providing inadequate safety equipment—present significant risks, and they are to blame for many construction workers’ accident-related injuries.

3. Unsafe Ladders and Scaffolding

According to OSHA, “Scaffold incidents causing injury or death to workers [are] often the result of either the planking or support giving way, . . . the worker slipping, the absence of fall protection, or being struck by a falling object.” As OSHA also notes, “[t]hese incidents can [all]s be avoided by compliance with OSHA standards.”

Unfortunately, construction companies frequently don’t comply with OSHA standards. From failing to use proper tiebacks to failing to secure planking, various issues can make scaffolding unsafe for construction workers, and these issues are present on many construction sites in Miami.

Unsafe ladders are a common cause of construction accidents as well. Using unstable A-frames and failing to properly stabilize extension ladders are just two examples of issues for which a Miami construction accident lawyer may be able to help an injured worker file a claim.

4. Hazardous Electricity

Failure to control hazardous electricity is another common cause of construction accidents in Miami. On unsafe construction sites, electrocution is a risk for workers in all trades. From faulty wiring to failing to follow appropriate lockout/tagout procedures, here too, there are numerous issues that can—and frequently do—lead to serious injuries.

5. Unsafe Tools

As a construction worker, you should have access to the tools you need for the job. While some workers have their own tools, many workers rely on their employers to provide them with the tools they need. Accidents involving unsafe tools are common, and they happen in three primary ways:

  • A defective tool can fail, resulting in injury to an employee or the employee’s coworkers;
  • A company can provide its workers with tools that are worn out, broken or unsuited to the job at hand, or,
  • A company can fail to provide necessary tools to its workers, forcing them to make dangerous compromises on the job.

In each of these scenarios, workers who get injured can—and should—talk to a Miami construction accident lawyer about their legal rights. When tool-related accidents result in serious injuries, injured workers will often be entitled to significant compensation.

6. Unsafe Construction Equipment

Unsafe construction equipment is also a major safety risk for workers on construction sites. Accidents involving forklifts, cranes, diggers and other pieces of heavy equipment will frequently result in catastrophic injuries. Equipment defects, inadequate maintenance, inadequate training, negligent operation and inadequate access to safety equipment are all common factors in these accidents.

7. No Eye or Ear Protection

On construction sites, eye and ear protection are both extremely important for workers’ safety. Both prolonged exposure (i.e., listening to a generator all day) and traumatic accidents (i.e., being struck in the eye by debris) can potentially result in long-term injuries—and these injuries can generally be avoided with appropriate ear plugs and eyewear. Here too, however, many companies simply don’t provide their workers with the protection they need to stay safe on the job.

8. No Respiratory Protection

Inadequate respiratory protection is a major risk for construction workers as well. From generator fumes to concrete and drywall dust, construction workers who don’t have adequate respiratory protection risk breathing in multiple types of harmful fumes and particles. In some cases, this can result in construction workers developing cancers and other illnesses over time. In others, it can result in immediate and life-threatening emergencies.

9. Unsafe Premises

Sometimes, it isn’t construction companies and contractors that are to blame for hazardous construction sites, but rather the property owners. When construction workers are forced to work on unsafe premises, the owners of the premises may be legally responsible for any injuries they suffer on the job.

10. Co-worker Negligence

Finally, many construction accidents happen because workers’ co-workers make mistakes. Construction sites are often extremely busy, and if one person isn’t being careful or doesn’t know how to stay safe, this can put everyone else in harm’s way. In this scenario, the co-worker’s employer may be liable, and recovering just compensation will involve hiring a Miami construction accident lawyer to file a claim against the company.

Discuss Your Legal Rights with a Miami Construction Accident Lawyer for Free

If you have been injured on a construction site in Miami, you should talk to a lawyer about your legal rights. To speak with a Miami construction accident lawyer at Brais Law Firm for free, call 800-499-0551 or tell us how we can reach you online now.

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