Tag Archive for: scaffolding accident

Preventing Deadly Scaffolding Accidents

Employees in the construction industry often work at high heights. In order to accommodate for this, scaffolds are constructed. While scaffolds may provide access to otherwise unreachable levels, scaffold protections and safety standards aren’t always adhered to. In fact, scaffolding accidents lead to numerous injuries and dozens of deaths each year. For one year that Occupational Safety and Health Association (OSHA) data is available, there were 61 scaffolding-related fatalities recorded, all of which could have been avoided by compliance with OSHA standards. 

When employees work on a job site, they have a duty to adhere to workplace safety standards; however, they also have a right to a safe workplace, which is often the responsibility of the employer. Preventing deadly scaffolding accidents is possible when all of those on a job site, including employers, do their part. Consider the following tips for preventing deadly scaffolding accidents, and call our lawyers directly if you have more questions about your rights or how to stay safe–

Preventing Scaffolding Accidents

When safety regulations are followed, workers are properly trained, and equipment is effective and properly used, it is possible to prevent scaffolding accidents that could lead to devastating injuries. Tips for preventing scaffolding accidents include:

  • Ensure that all workers on a job site are properly trained. When it comes to preventing deadly scaffolding accidents, ensuring that all workers on a job site are properly trained is a critical starting point. Workers should be trained on all aspects of working on and around scaffolding, including:
  • Fall protection standards;
  • Equipment standards and best practices;
  • Scaffold defects and how to identify them;
  • Common scaffold-related hazards and risks;
  • How to work safely on scaffolds; and
  • How much a scaffold can bear in terms of load capacity/weight.

In addition to the above, it’s also important that workers are trained regarding to whom they should report safety violations and what to do if they notice an unsafe situation. 

  • Implement all safety regulations. All safety regulations that are established by OSHA should be properly implemented These include, but are not limited to, regulations pertaining to accessing different levels of scaffolding, the use of fall prevention tactics and harnesses, secure attachment of scaffolds to buildings, keeping scaffolds a safe distance from power lines, inspecting scaffolds and other equipment before each shift, ensuring that scaffolds have proper guardrails, ensuring that each scaffold and landing is equipped with non-slip tread to prevent slip and falls, using safety netting to protect other workers from falling objects, and more. If you have more questions about all of the safety regulations related to scaffolding, talk to an OSHA attorney who can help you to find answers. 
  • Use basic safety precautions and common sense. In addition to making sure that OSHA rules and regulations are followed, it’s also important to use basic safety precautions and common sense when working on or around scaffolding. For example, working in wet conditions can create slip and fall hazards, and should be avoided. Additionally, it is important that workers always keep their hard hats and other safety gear on at all times, always use caution when climbing ladders to different scaffolding levels, and never engage in running or horseplay on scaffolds. Generally staying alert and aware of one’s surroundings, inspecting a site before beginning work, and working at a safe pace is key, too. Of course, any safety violations that are noticed should immediately be reported. It is against the law for your employer to retaliate against you for reporting an unsafe condition in the workplace. 

Know Your Rights if You’re Injured at Work

When an unsafe condition exists and workers are injured as a direct result, it’s important to know what the process is for recovering compensation. Through the workers’ compensation system, a worker who is injured on the job has the right to file a claim for benefits, including medical benefits and some lost wage benefits. In cases where a third party was to blame for the accident, a third-party liability claim can also yield compensation for non-economic benefits. 

Call OSHA Injury Attorney for Help 

If you are injured at work or have concerns about the safety of your workplace, you are not alone. If you have been injured as a result of a scaffolding accident you should contact an OSHA Injury Attorney immediately so they can provide you with advice about what your legal rights are, and represent you if you decide to pursue damages. To learn more about scaffolding safety regulations and what to do when injured in a scaffolding accident, please complete our contact form and we will forward your information to a qualified workplace injury attorney.