Construction scaffolding is an essential component of any building construction project, enabling workers access to work alongside a building and remain safe. However, accidents can and do happen, and could sometimes lead to extremely grave injuries. If you have been hurt in a scaffolding accident, you will need an experienced Wakefield scaffolding accident lawyer to support your case.
A seasoned construction accident attorney who is familiar with this complex area of law could provide vigilant representation to seek financial damages on your behalf. To learn more about the benefits of retaining legal assistance, schedule a consultation today.
Causes of Scaffolding Accidents and Injuries
A scaffold is a temporary horizontal and vertical platform comprised of individual sections that permits workers to perform their job tasks at high elevations. Typically, scaffolding is constructed entirely of metal and steel. Injuries involving scaffolding often stem from improper assembly that causes the platforms to collapse, potentially resulting in devastating falls that could lead to catastrophic injuries.
Besides construction workers, passersby and pedestrians could also be injured, whether by the collapse of a scaffold or falling debris from the scaffold platforms. Defective and incorrect braces, planks, footings, decking, guardrails, and counterweights could all cause scaffolding falls and collapses. Generally, the causes of scaffolding accidents include one or more of these contributing factors:
- Scaffolding that is improperly assembled onsite
- Scaffolding supports that buckle, collapse, or fail
- Scaffolding that is improperly manufactured or designed offsite
- Faulty or inadequate safety equipment
- Broken or old scaffolding
- Slippery, wet, or oily surfaces
Scaffolding injuries and fatalities often stem from accidents due to falling objects, worker falls, electrocution when metal scaffolding contacts power, and structural collapse. Some common injuries incurred from scaffolding falls could include spinal cord, back, neck, limb, and brain injuries.
Liability and Compensation in Scaffolding Accident Claims
Each individual on a worksite, including contractors, employers, supervisors, and workers, are required to comply with certain safety regulations, including the mandated us of fall protection equipment like harnesses, lifelines, and lanyards. In spite of these regulations, severe injuries still occur, with workers suffering serious and sometimes fatal injuries. However, in a general sense, safety responsibility on a worksite lies with the General Contractor. Other parties including manufacturers, subcontractors, and vendors could also be liable.
In the state of Massachusetts, most workers who are injured while on the job would qualify to submit a worker’s compensation claim. However, worker’s compensation would only pay for medical bills and some of the individual’s lost wages while they heal from an injury. An individual injured in a scaffolding accident could also be eligible to file a third-party personal injury lawsuit against other defendants for financial damages, in addition to receiving worker’s compensation.
A Wakefield scaffolding accident lawyer could help an injured worker determine whether their injuries could be compensated in the traditional civil court system. To bring a successful third-party claim, the plaintiff must show that the responsibly party owed the victim a duty of care, breached that duty, and as a result of that breach, the plaintiff was injured. Damages that could be awarded in a third-party claim include medical bills, lost wages, physical therapy, lost future potential income, pain and suffering, physical suffering, and other losses stemming from the scaffolding accident.
Deadline to File an Injury Suit
Work injury lawsuits against third-parties after a Wakefield scaffolding accident must be filed within three years of the date of the injury under Massachusetts General Laws Chapter 260 § 2A. If the plaintiff fails to file their cases within three years out from the date of the accident, they could forfeit their right to present a clam against the at-fault party or parties.
There could be limited circumstances which would permit the individual to request an extension of the statutory deadline. It is vital for the plaintiff to contact a scaffolding accident lawyer in Wakefield as soon as possible who could explain the time limitations that could apply to their case and help preserve the victim’s rights.
Schedule a Case Review with a Wakefield Scaffolding Accident Attorney
If you or someone you love suffered injuries because of a scaffolding accident, a Wakefield scaffolding accident lawyer could fight on your behalf to win financial damages from the negligent party or parties. A seasoned attorney could discuss with you the recommended steps to take next and protect your interests, whether at the negotiating table or inside the courtroom. Call now to schedule your introductory case review.