On nearly every construction site, even single story buildings, workers must climb ladders and often have to work on scaffolding. Unfortunately, one of the principal causes of injury at work is falls from ladders or scaffolding. In 2013 alone, nearly 300 construction workers fell to their deaths from a ladder or scaffolding.
These types of accidents are generally preventable and occur for a variety of reasons:
- The ladders or scaffolding may be poorly maintained or not maintained at all. Employers may have no procedure for regularly inspecting ladders or scaffolding to determine potential safety risks.
- Scaffolding may be erected by persons with no knowledge or experience with such structures, or workers may have little or no training regarding how to properly assemble scaffolding
- Contractors or owners may either fail to put policies or procedures in place to ensure safe use of ladders or scaffolding, or may fail to supervise employees in the assembly of scaffolding or the use and placement of ladders
- Other workers may take shortcuts in the placement of ladders or assembly of scaffolding, or may lack the requisite skill to use or assemble ladders or scaffolding
- Ladders or scaffolding may be negligently designed or constructed, such that, even when used correctly, they pose unreasonable risk of injury
If you have been hurt in a fall from a ladder or scaffold at work, you can pursue workers’ compensation benefits for your lost wages and medical expenses. If your injury was caused by the carelessness or negligence of someone other than your employer or a co-worker, you can also file a third party claim for damages in court. A workers’ compensation claim may pay out sooner, but will have a dollar value limitation, whereas a lawsuit may take some time for you to see any payment, but there are no limits on the amount you can receive.
Contact Our Office
For a free initial consultation, contact our office online or call us at 973-993-8787. We have office locations in Morristown and Newton, but will visit you in your home or the hospital, if necessary.