According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), about 21 percent of all workplace fatalities happen in the construction industry, and falls are the leading cause of construction worker death. In many instances, a worker injured in a fall at a construction site is limited to workers’ compensation benefits, which only pay for partial wage replacement and nothing for pain and suffering. But under certain circumstances, a worker hurt in a construction fall, or the surviving family of a fatally injured worker, can sue for negligence and recover full personal injury or wrongful death benefits. At Gates Law Group, A Professional Corporation, we pursue claims for people injured or killed in construction site falls. Drawing on 39 years of legal experience, we build a compelling case for full, fair compensation.
OSHA lists falls as the first of the “fatal four” types of construction accidents, causing around 38 percent of construction industry deaths annually. So, it should be no surprise that four of the top 10 OSHA standards violations have to do with falls:
Unfortunately for workers, California does not have a New York-style scaffold law that allows workers to sue for negligence when a safety violation coincides with a fall. Employers are generally protected from liability even when they are negligent, which means employees can only sue for a fall when a third party causes the accident.
Construction site falls occur for a number of reasons, including:
A fall can result in severe injury, including bone fractures, neck and spine injuries, and traumatic brain injury. Workers who fall from a height of at least one level onto hard surfaces or a hazard often suffer disabling and fatal injuries.
However, in order to sue for negligence, the worker must be able to prove that someone with whom there is no employer-employee or coworker relationship is responsible for causing the accident. Potential defendants include:
Property owners can also be responsible for the fall under a theory of premises liability if a hidden hazard on the property, which they knew or should have known about, caused the fall.
Proving fault for a construction site fall is usually not an easy task. But our construction law background enables us to investigate the accident thoroughly to determine cause and identify potential defendants. You can rely on our knowledge and determination, as we fight for the full compensation you deserve.
Gates Law Group, A Professional Corporation provides aggressive representation for victims of construction site falls in Fresno and throughout California. Please call 559-432-9944 or contact us online to schedule a consultation. Our firm’s main office is in Fresno, but we also assist clients from locations in Paso Robles and Visalia.