Bucket Truck Accident Attorneys Serving People Injured in Illinois & Beyond
An estimated 250,000 workers use aerial lifts such as cherry pickers, boom trucks, and bucket trucks each year, putting them at risk for falls, electrocution, and a list of other possible serious injuries.
The majority of these workers are in the construction, painting, tree cutting, or utility industries. To prevent accidents while working on aerial lift equipment, it is important that employers are vigilant in ensuring that all safety precautions are being implemented.
Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers LLC appreciates the dangers a bucket truck poses to a worker and those working around him. Our bucket truck accident lawyers are committing to hold responsible parties fully accountable for injuries resulting from the improper use, design, or maintenance of these machines. Contact our Illinois personal injury lawyers today for a free review of your case.
Common Types of Bucket Truck Accidents
There are always fall risks when working at elevated levels. Anyone working on a cherry picker or bucket truck has the risk of falling, but there are many other hazards as well. Since these devices are often attached to utility trucks, they are mobile and have the risk of moving or being hit by other moving vehicles and are often in many different locations.
Some common causes of bucket truck injuries and fatalities include:
- Falling from the lift. From boom-supported lifts like cherry pickers and bucket trucks, 50% of falls are due to being ejected from the lift. This can be caused by the impact of hitting or being hit by other vehicles or objects, sudden jerking motions, or falling objects.
- Electrocution. Many injuries and fatalities working on aerial lifts are due to coming in contact with power lines. This can be from workers that maintain the power lines or construction lifts that inadvertently hit power lines.
- Tip-over. If improper weights are in lifts, the truck is moved or the vehicle is not stable while using a lift, there can be tip-over accidents from great heights. These incidents can lead to fractures, internal crushing, and fatalities.
Disturbing Accident Rates With Bucket Trucks
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, in 2011 there were 39 fatalities directly blamed on elevating devices such as cherry pickers and aerial lifts that were not truck mounted.
Another 66 fatalities were directly attributed to truck-mounted lifts. Another 34 fatalities listed these types of equipment as the secondary cause of death in workers. In addition, there are also fatalities from electrocution while using an elevating device, but these are not included in these numbers.
There are several industries that are at high risk for fatal accidents and injuries due to unsafe work practices and defective equipment. According to the Electronic Library of Construction Occupational Safety and Health, electricians are at the highest risk. Construction workers, electrical and power installers, painters, utility workers, and carpenters follow them as other high-risk professions that have large injury and fatality rates from aerial lifts.
Safe Work Practices to Prevent Bucket Truck Injuries
Aerial lifts have similar risks as cranes and other elevated work equipment but have the additional element of also being mobile. This makes using all safety precautions even more crucial as there are outside influences these workers may have to contend with. Precautions that should be used are:
- Equipment inspection. All equipment on the lifts should be inspected before use to make sure it is working correctly to prevent jerking and mechanical failure. This includes the extendable pole and electric motor on the lift.
- Worksite safety. Cherry pickers and bucket trucks need to be parked on a level, stable surface, and have emergency brake set; never move the truck with anyone in the lift. Be aware of wind elements that can cause dangerous lift conditions.
- Stable loads. All weight requirements should be adhered to as well as not using the lift for uneven loads.
- Safe loads. Within the weight parameters set forth by the product manufacturer
- Wear safety equipment. The use of harnesses, hard hats, and other safety equipment should always be maintained.
Aerial lifts are needed to perform many jobs and are quicker and safer than using ladders and other lifting devices. However, there are many risks both from the job itself and outside factors. Any industry using these devices needs to take the proper safety precautions to ensure their workers are being protected.
Illinois Aerial Lift Accident Attorneys Committed to Your Case
Very few attorneys have extensive experience litigating accidents involving bucket trucks (cherry picker) accidents. At Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers LLC we have successfully prosecuted aerial lift accidents for injured people involving: defective products, negligent operation, and inadequate maintenance. In most cases, we have successfully recovered damages for our clients, based upon:
- Lost wages
- Medical expenses
- Funeral costs
- Compensation for pain and disability
Contact our office today for a free case evaluation to discuss your legal rights with a uniquely experienced legal team. (888) 424-5757 Call anytime.
- When Fall Protection On This Equipment Is Required in Construction Work: OSHA
- OSHA requirements for attaching the grounding devices on aerial lifts and bucket trucks