Atlanta Scaffolding Accident Lawyers
Scaffolding is used in all types of construction and building maintenance whenever work is being done above ground. The U.S. Department of Labor estimates that 65% of construction workers in America (2.3 million) use scaffolding on a regular basis. Considering that number, it is not at all surprising that the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) estimates that there are about 10,000 scaffolding-related injuries each year, resulting in 60 to 80 fatalities.
Scaffolding accidents don’t just harm construction workers. Pedestrians, bystanders, and passengers in vehicles can be injured or killed when scaffolds collapse or when objects fall off of them and strike someone below.
If you’ve been injured or lost a loved one in a scaffolding accident, you deserve to be compensated for your losses. To find out about how you can recover medical bills, lost wages, burial expenses, and much more, contact the experienced Atlanta construction accident attorneys at Grant Law Office. Call (404) 995-3955 or (866) 249-5513 for a free consultation.
OSHA Scaffolding Standards
OSHA has set very specific standards for the erection and maintenance of scaffolding on construction sites. Those standards include:
- The scaffold must support at least four times the anticipated necessary weight.
- The scaffold should never be supported by loose objects, such as barrels, loose bricks, etc.
- Planking should be overlapped by at least 12 inches.
- Planking should extend 6 to 12 inches beyond end supports.
- There should be overhead protection when work is being performed above a walkway.
- Tools, materials, debris, etc., should not be allowed to accumulate on scaffolding.
- Shore scaffolds and lean-to scaffolds are prohibited.
Common Causes of Scaffolding Accidents
When employers, contractors, or site supervisors do not adhere to the above standards, workers often get hurt. Common causes of scaffold accidents include the following:
- Inadequate safety training for workers
- Lack of protection for pedestrians and traffic below scaffolding
- Lack of warning signs or barricades
- Poor design or improper construction of scaffolding
- Damaged or defective planking
- Lack of or inadequate guardrails
- Lack of or defective safety harnesses
- Lack of or poor securement of the scaffold
- Overloading of the scaffold
- Unsecured tools and building materials falling off the scaffold
- Scaffolding not being inspected regularly or maintained properly
- Wet or icy planking, debris on planking (causing a slip, a trip, and/or a fall)
- Defective or worn-out parts of scaffolding
- Scaffolding coming into contact with power lines
Who Can Be Held Liable for a Scaffolding Accident?
Scaffolding is often not owned by the construction company that uses it - it is rented or assembled by a different company. In addition, there are often a number of subcontractors that use the scaffolding at the same time. Because of this, numerous parties may be held liable for a scaffolding accident in which a worker is injured depending on the circumstances, including:
- The owner or supplier of the scaffold (the scaffold company)
- The party that assembled or disassembled the scaffold
- Any of the contractors or subcontractors using the scaffold
- The party charged with maintaining the scaffold
- The party or government entity charged with inspecting the scaffold
- The designer or manufacturer of any part of the scaffold
Why You Need an Experienced Construction Accident Attorney
Because multiple parties and insurance companies may be involved, scaffolding accidents can be extremely complicated. A thorough investigation by qualified personnel and precise documentation will be required for an injured worker or bystander to have a solid injury claim.
Our experienced construction accident attorneys at Grant Law Office have the knowledge and resources to do such an investigation and identify which parties may be held liable for your injuries. In addition, many construction accidents will be covered by workers’ compensation benefits, but those benefits are often less than adequate. An experienced attorney will be able to identify liable parties not covered by workers’ compensation immunity, and file suit against them as well.
For over three decades, Grant Law Office has been successfully representing Georgia injury victims, getting them the compensation they need to recover their losses. For a free case evaluation, call (404) 995-3955 or (866) 249-5513 today.