Heavy equipment accidents cause some of the most serious injuries, and they are often preventable with proper safety precautions. Construction sites make extensive use of large vehicles and machinery to accomplish a variety of tasks, and they are essential components of any major project. However, this machinery has to be kept in excellent condition and operated by a professional with the proper training. Sadly, many construction sites are governed with poor oversight, leaving workers at serious risk while they go about their tasks.
WHAT ARE THE TYPICAL CAUSES OF HEAVY EQUIPMENT ACCIDENTS?
Vehicles and machinery like bulldozers, dump trucks, lifts, excavators, cranes, forklifts, backhoes, earth movers, graders and cement mixers are found on construction sites everywhere. These machines are involved in a lot of incidents, as are many types of powerful tools like drills or nail guns. The construction industry is not the only one plagued by these incidents, either, as the oil and gas and maritime industries regularly put workers in harm’s way.
In general, a piece of machinery is only as safe as the setting it works in, so it is essential that foremen, engineers and safety personnel maintain proper procedures and training for employees. Many injuries occur when the machinery is controlled by a poorly trained or reckless worker, when driving paths and blind spots are not clearly marked, when machinery is not inspected regularly, and when machinery is used during inclement weather. If any of these are at the root of an incident, there will be one or more negligent parties that a victim can pursue a claim against.
WHAT KINDS OF INJURY CAN HEAVY EQUIPMENT ACCIDENTS CAUSE?
Being struck by a forklift, run over by a driver navigating the worksite or caught underneath a falling crane are just a few examples of how an incident can take place. Any of these events typically leave behind grievous injuries. Crushing and striking injuries can result in broken bones, severe lacerations, contusions, burns and even worse trauma. Some of the worst injuries occur when the incident damages the brain, and these are known as traumatic brain injuries (TBIs).
TBIs can range from a mild concussion to multiple lesions, contusions and lacerations in the brain. Almost 100 percent of people who suffer a mild TBI will recover fully and not suffer from any long-term complications. People who are badly hurt and suffer a severe TBI are generally not so lucky. These victims will have to overcome long-term complications like motor disorders, speech disorders, chronic pain, nausea, seizures, problems with focusing or learning and mood disturbance. While many people who suffer from a TBI are eventually able to live independently, physical and mental therapy may both be needed to facilitate recovery. This can quickly put a victim in a bad spot financially, a situation that is already bleak due to lost work time.
Personal injury attorneys can help stem the worst of the financial blow by helping the victim recover a settlement from the negligent party. If you have been hurt on the job due to the recklessness of others, you have a legal right to representation and the right to seek out a settlement.