The Occupational Safety & Health Administration is a government agency dedicated to the protection of construction and other industrial workers throughout the nation. OSHA regulations are supposed to protect the safety of construction workers, but the unfortunate reality is that numerous construction sites fail to abide by these scaffolding accident regulations every year. Straying from the regulations has caused the number of injuries and deaths of construction workers to escalate every year. OSHA estimates that every year, there are over 4,500 injuries and at least 60 deaths that result from the failure of construction employers to provide fall protection.
Under OSHA’s General Requirements federal statute for the Construction Industry, it is required that each scaffolding and its components be able to support its own weight and 4 times the maximum load placed on the scaffolding. In addition, the suspension ropes that are used on scaffoldings must also be able to hold at least 6 times the maximum intended weight. There also must be guardrail systems erected along a scaffolding to provide the maximum protections for construction workers.
The Prevalence of OSHA Violations in the Construction Industry
The construction industry is often found to be in violation of scaffolding requirements in numerous ways. The construction industry may sacrifice a careful review of whether scaffoldings meet these requirements so that a project can be completed on time. A supervisor may fail to ensure that guardrail systems are installed on a scaffolding, and this makes it much more likely that a worker will fall from the scaffolding. Construction workers may be forced to work on the same scaffolding at once, when the scaffolding is truly not able to hold the weight of all workers on the scaffolding.
OSHA inspections reveal that the following exmaples are the most common violations cited for a failure to provide fall protection:
- Failure to provide proper flooring on scaffoldings
- Failure to ensure that a scaffolding is capable of supporting its designated weight
- Failure to provide the necessary ladders or other equipment for safe access onto the scaffold
- Failure to protect construction workers from falling objects on a scaffold
- Failure to conduct daily inspections of the scaffold to ensure it meets OSHA regulations
- Failure to provide necessary repairs for a scaffold
- Failure to cover electrical cords and circuits that are close to the scaffold
When a construction site has engaged in any of these violations, then it is likely that there are multiple parties at fault. A construction injury lawyer can help you track the appropriate party to sue in this instance. The injuries that a construction worker can suffer after a fall include permanent brain trauma, permanent disabilities and even death. One may suffer from broken or fractured limbs that take months to heal and prevent a worker from earning a stable income to support family members. When it is apparent that a worker has been injured as the result of an unsafe construction scaffold or site, it is important to consult with a lawyer about potential legal remedies.
Importance of Hazard Communications for Preventing Falls
Workers have a right to receive certain communications in regards to dangers that may be on a worksite. OSHA has coined the term “hazard communication” for its importance in the construction industry. The OSHA Hazard Communication Standard requires that workers know about the hazards of chemicals that they produce or import on worksites. All employers are also required to provide labels and safety data sheets to workers who may be exposed to hazardous chemicals on a worksite. If you were never given adequate information about dangers on your worksite, then you may have a legal claim against your employer.
Talk to Construction Lawyers Today for Immediate Help With Your Accident Case
Call our construction site accident lawyers today to receive a free initial consultation for your scaffolding accident claim. We can help you assert your rights in the construction industry and receive the compensation you deserve.