Who’s Operating the Crane?

Exposure to risks of accidents and injuries is part of construction workers’ every day job. One reason is the presence of heavy equipment in construction sites, like excavators, crawlers, caterpillars, loaders, forklifts, road rollers, concrete mixer, bulldozers and cranes. Heavy machineries help the construction industry accomplish more at a much faster rate, however, due to their sizes, any of these can cause either a disabling or fatal injury if operated the wrong way, or by an untrained or careless worker.

Among the many types of heavy machinery, the crane is one that is very essential; it is, in fact, a must in construction works. Whether for lifting materials that weigh lots of tons, constructing high buildings, moving things inside a warehouse or workshop, building oil rigs, or salvaging sunken ships, a totally necessary heavy equipment is a crane.

To be truly safe and useful, though, cranes need to be maintained, regularly inspected and operated only by a properly trained and skilled person. This is because in spite of their being totally beneficial, these also have the potential to cause the worst damage and most serious work-related injuries.

Based on the records of the Center for Construction Research and Training (a division of the Center to Protect Workers’ Rights (CPWR), a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization), there were 22 fatal accidents each year, from 1992 to 2006; non-fatal accidents, on the other, accounted for hundreds of serious injuries, such as broken bones, brain injury, spinal cord damage, or partial or complete paralysis.

There are three major hazards identified with the use of cranes:

Electrical hazards. This can prove fatal is a metal part of a crane comes in contact with a high-voltage power line. About 50 percent of crane accidents are actually due to electrocution. The greater danger when this happens is that, others, who may be working near the crane, can also suffer electrocution besides the crane operator.

Overloading. If a crane lifts an object which exceeds its lifting capacity, this can result to structural failure, tipping over, or the crane ,with its load, plunging down to the ground and seriously injure or kill workers and passersby on the spot.

Falling materials. This is the case when a material that is being lifted by an overhead crane is not properly secured. The load can slip and cause serious injuries and/or damages to properties on the ground.

It is difficult to imagine a set of circumstances under which a crane would collapse that is not also associated with some form of negligence. Sadly, these thoroughly preventable accidents do occur and they do cause catastrophic injuries. Bearing that in mind, we know just how much may be at stake with your claim, and we can help you determine exactly what compensation you and your family are able to pursue, aside from your workers’ compensation claim.

Personal injury lawyers, such as those from the Karlin, Fleisher & Falkenberg, LLC, law firm, know that a crane collapse can cause severe injuries or even death. They also know, however, that there isn’t any form of negligence that cannot be associated with this type of accident. Seeking the assistance of an experienced personal injury lawyer, for the purpose of pursuing compensation, may be a big help for victims in getting the financial help they will need for all the necessary medical treatment needed.

Author: Dean

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