How can employers help prevent demolition worker injuries and illnesses?
Demolition accidents at construction sites often cause serious injuries and fatalities, according to Safety + Health, an online magazine published by the National Safety Council (NSC). But just how common are demolition accidents? Why do they happen? You can learn more below about demolition accidents, courtesy of an Ohio workers’ compensation lawyer who knows how to handle such complex legal cases.
Demolition accident statistics
Every year, demolition workers sustain serious injuries or die in work-related accidents. In 2020, a total of 78 workers were killed in demolition accidents, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). That figure was lower than in 2019 when 98 construction workers were killed in demolition accidents. Then again, 2019 was the worst year on record for demolition accidents since 2007.
Types of demolition accidents
There are many different types of work-related demolition accidents. According to Safety + Health Magazine, some of the most common demolition accidents include:
- Falls from a height, whether it’s falling off a ladder or falling off scaffolding.
- Being struck by a falling object, including demolition debris or tools used in demolition work.
- Inhaling hazardous materials, including silica particles and asbestos. These are often found in older buildings being demolished.
- Hearing loss due to jackhammers and other dangerous loud demolition equipment.
- Burn injuries due to exposure to dangerously high heat.
- Electrocution accidents due to the use of heavy equipment and power tools.
- Blindness or vision loss due to objects striking or penetrating the eye.
How demolition accidents happen
In many cases, demolition accidents occur due to mistakes made by co-workers or employers at construction sites. Specific examples can include:
- Misuse of demolition equipment, including jackhammers and power tools.
- Lack of training to teach demolition workers how to safely use the equipment.
- Not providing employees with safety equipment, including safety goggles, hard hats, and hearing protection devices, including construction-grade earplugs and noise-canceling headphones.
- Improperly secured ladders or scaffolding, resulting in a ladder falling over or a scaffolding accident.
These are just some of the reasons why demolition accidents occur. Whatever the cause of your demolition accident, make sure you fully understand your rights and the legal options available to you. Talk to a lawyer as soon as possible.
What are injured workers' legal options?
Depending on the circumstances of your demolition accident, you often have several options available to you:
- File for workers’ compensation.
- Accept a settlement offer, especially if someone working for another company caused your demolition accident.
- File a lawsuit against the at-fault party, especially if that person works for another company, something that’s common at construction sites.
In each case, an attorney can help you better understand the legal options available to you.
Call today to talk to an experienced workers' comp lawyer
You might think you don’t need an attorney if you got hurt while working on a demolition project at a construction site. All you have to do is tell your employer and you can receive workers’ compensation benefits, right?
Don’t be so sure. In many cases, demolition accidents turn out to be complicated legal cases. Sometimes, it’s because your workers’ compensation claim is denied. Other times, you might be eligible to receive additional benefits or compensation and not realize it. This is why it’s important to talk to a lawyer as soon as possible.
Our Ohio workers’ compensation attorneys at Hochman & Plunkett Co., L.P.A can help you every step of the way. We understand how the workers’ compensation system works in Ohio. We can also help you explore whether other possible legal situations apply, including filing a third-party claim or lawsuit.
Learn more about your legal rights. Contact us and schedule a free case consultation with an Ohio workers’ compensation lawyer who puts your best interests first. We have offices in Dayton, Cincinnati, Springfield, and Troy, and we handle claims throughout Ohio.