Confined Space Accident Lawyers: Chicago, Illinois
Confined space accidents are a serious problem in the United States that affect construction workers and maintenance crews nationwide. Many occupations are dangerous where workers are required to perform their duties under hazardous conditions including in tightly confined spaces.
Confined area fatalities and injuries often involve electrocution, exposure to radiation, toxins and fumes along with burns from extreme temperatures and explosive gases and liquids. The construction accident lawyers of our law offices work with victims of these serious accidents in Cook County, Lake County, Will County as well as DuPage County and can offer you a free consultation for an injury case via phone call.
Individuals working in confined areas often suffer serious injuries (that rack up high medical expenses for the medical treatment) caused by moving parts, lack of oxygen, asphyxiation, or being buried by debris and soil. Some examples of confined spaces include:
- Storage bins
- Ship compartments
- Excavated areas
Legally, confined space is often defined by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) according to factors that include the following: only designed for workers for service access, not designed habitation, and a limited means of entry and exit. A 'permit space' is a confined space that is at a heightened risk of an incident due to its irregular shape and lack of fixed walls.
Chicago Construction Accident Attorneys Committed to Protecting the Legal Rights of Workers Injured in Confined Space Accidents
Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers LLC is a group of construction site accident lawyers committed to protecting the legal rights of people injured while working in confined spaces in Illinois. Our personal injury lawyers will investigate and prosecute these cases without any out-of-pocket expenses on your part. We have had success prosecuting both a workers' compensation claim and personal injury lawsuit on behalf of people injured while working in a confined area.
Secondary Fatalities Related to Rescue of Trapped Workers in Illinois
Many deaths that occur in confined spaces will involve a secondary fatality where the rescuer also dies. In many of these situations, the rescue was attempted to extract the worker by others not wearing PPE (personal protective equipment) or before the confined area had been tested for safety.
These areas are often flammable, have significant physical barriers, limited area for ingress and egress movement, or susceptible to product instability or hazardous energy.
From a legal perspective, the secondary fatality would have similar legal rights for workers' compensation and wrongful death cases as the individual injured in the original incident under Illinois law.
Chicago Closed Space Work Area FAQs
In this section, we provide some answers to frequently asked questions that workers involved in confined space work accidents ask us often.
What are the Hazards of Working in a Confined Space in Chicago?
Some of the hazards involved in working in closed and confined spaces across Chicago include toxic gas intake, asphyxiation, drowning, and death among the many other dangerous and personal heath risks.
What do you do When Working in a Confined Space?
If you have to work in a confined space in Illinois (try to avoid them and make sure it is completely necessary), make sure it is safe, free of hazardous materials, contains sufficient oxygen levels, and has clear entries and exits.
What is the Definition of a Confined Space at Work in Chicago?
A confined space is defined in Illinois as an area substantially enclosed and where serious personal injury can happen when toxic or hazardous materials or substances enter the enclosure.
What is the Acceptable Oxygen Level in an Illinois Confined Space?
To work in a confined space in Chicago, there must be oxygen levels between 19.5% and 23.5%. Of course, these are just limits, and it might be advisable in certain circumstances to have even more oxygen. Also, buildings must have lower flammable limits above 10% and permissible exposure limits above 50%.
What the Construction Industry can do to Prevent Accidents in Chicago Closed Space Work Areas
While these areas are highly susceptible to causing serious injuries or death, nearly all of these fatalities are preventable. Workers can be protected while performing their duties in these confined spaces by with safety rules, protocols, and procedures effective at controlling the job site.
To be effective, employers must train workers to obey written rules of how to enter, work, and exit the confined area.
Some effective rules include:
- Ensure that the confined area remains locked or sealed to prevent any unauthorized entry.
- Post warning signs at the entry of the space.
- Develop, implement, and follow a confined work area plan outlining the procedures, practices, and means used by employees that have the authorization to enter the area.
- Ensure that every worker has all the necessary information and documentation concerning any hazards, toxic fumes, equipment, or dangerous substance use or found within the confined area.
- Provide quick access to rescue equipment to every rescuer entering the confined area.
Any individual suffering extensive injuries because of a violation of safety standards should seek legal representation through an experienced Chicago personal injury attorney who handles confined area accident cases.
Hiring an Illinois Attorney for a Construction Accident Claim Involving a Confined Area Injury
Confined area accidents happen to construction workers and maintenance crews who often suffer catastrophic injuries and fatalities that could have been avoided. Critically injured victims may require lifelong health care and compensation to pay medical bills, hospitalization expenses, loss of income, and intangible damages including pain, stress, anxiety, and suffering.
These types of complex cases require an experienced law firm to negotiate a settlement with the insurance company or litigate. Because of that, victims and surviving family members of a loved one lost in a confined space accident will hire an attorney to seek financial compensation from all parties at fault.
Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers LLC at (888) 424-5757 concentrates construction site accidents involving a severe injury or wrongful death. Our attorneys accept these cases on contingency to avoid the need for paying upfront fees.
Our construction worker injury attorneys can serve as your aggressive advocate by gathering evidence, investigating the scene of the accident, speaking to eyewitnesses, and hiring experts to present the case to an insurance company adjuster for an out-of-court settlement or jury award at trial.