Construction Site Accidents
In recent years, the greater Seattle metropolitan area, including Kirkland, Bellingham, and Olympia have seen enormous growth in terms of population. With this boom in growth has come a corresponding growth in the amount of construction in area residential and commercial buildings. In fact, for many years now Seattle has led the nation in terms of the number of cranes that dot the skyline, both downtown and in other areas, including Bellevue and Kirkland.
With this kind of growth, however, also come serious very serious accidents since workers will, from time to time, will be injured on the jobsite. Some cases will be resolved by Labor and Industries, which is a division of Washington State. Other times workers will be eligible for L&I and what is called a third party lawsuit, so the worker has, in effect, two claims.Washington State Construction Site Accident Laws
If you have been hurt on the job, on your employer’s property, then you have a traditional workman’s compensation claim, which is known as a Labor and Industries or L&I claim. If this is the case, you are not allowed, by law, to sue your employer for your damages, no matter how terrible your employer might have acted. This may seem unfair, but it is the law. However, there is a remedy for you because you can make a claim against L&I, and L&I will pay your medical bills and a percentage of your wages, known as time-loss.
There is an exception to the rule, however, and that is called a third-party claim. A third party claim occurs when you are hurt on the job and someone or something other than your employer causes your injuries.
Here are two examples. Suppose you are employed by a subcontractor to do the framing on a general contractor’s jobsite and the general contractor does not nail down a board properly, which causes you to slip and fall and injure yourself. In that case, since it was the general contractor’s fault, not your employers, you are allowed to sue the general contractor AND have a L&I claim. A second example is when a saw malfunctions and cuts you, perhaps the saw did not have a proper kill switch on it, while you are working on the job.
If you can prove the saw did not work properly, then you have the right to sue the manufacturer of the saw and have a L&I claim in Washington State. These are just two examples of the kind of accident that could happen on a Seattle or Bellevue construction site, but there are hundreds of other possibilities that could happen in any town or city in Washington State.
If you have been injured on a jobsite, after getting the medical care you need, you need to make a claim against the general contractor’s insurance company, or the at-fault construction site owner. Then you need to make a claim to the insurance company, once you are recovered, and inform them of your medical bill amount, lost wages, if any, and your pain and suffering.
In Washington State, you are allowed to receive all three to make you whole from your injuries. If you are injured on a jobsite or construction site, there are a variety of ways this could happen. These are some of the common ways:
- Electrical shock
- Chemical spill
- Falling from a scaffold or ladder
- Falling from a roof
- Crane accident
- Forklift accident
- Materials falling
- Falling materials and walls
While this list has the most common kinds of accidents that people experience, it is by no means meant to be an exhaustive list, meaning a complete list of all kinds of accidents people may be hurt on the job, or even a pedestrian who might get hurt while walking near a construction of jobsite.
Actual case: Recently, The Jackman Law Firm settled a claim for $700,000 for a man who was working on the job as a framer. The framer was a subcontractor for a large general contractor who did no ensure the jobsite was safe and the framer fell approximately twelve feet, suffering very serious injuries. Falls from heights of ten to twenty feet are among the most common forms of injuries on the job site and can lead to serious injuries.
Construction sites can create dangerous conditions for workers who are either not careful or whose jobsites are not safe can lead to very serious injuries. Among the most common are:
- Broken bones
- Soft tissue injuries
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Head trauma
- Spinal cord injuries
- Back injuries
- Shoulder injuries
- Knee injuries
Injuries of a serious nature that are incurred on the jobsite or at a construction site rarely heal on their own. Rather, these injuries need the medical attention of a proper doctor, osteopath, or chiropractor to address them and cure them.How The Jackman Law Firm Can Help
If you have been injured at a jobsite or construction site, you may have a claim against them to recoup compensation for your injuries. The Jackman Law Firm has the expertise to effectively represent you with the insurance company for the construction company, in arbitration and if necessary in court to secure your rights for compensation and relief. After your injury, you are understandably upset and likely unsure of your options and which way to with your case. You are likely receiving a lot of phone calls from insurance companies, you’re going to the doctor or the chiropractor, and you may be missing work.
If this is the case, do not go through this process alone. We can help you every step of the way. We can work with the insurance companies so they do not contact you. We can help you secure all of the compensation you are owed for your injury under Washington State Law. The Jackman Law Firm can help you recover the following:
- Money for pain and suffering
- Money for lost wages
- Money for out of pocket expenses
- Money for medical bills
We have the resources, experience, and successful track record to win your case. There may be instances when you find yourself having to defend yourself from untrue accusations from the insurance company for the party that injured you. They may claim that you are somehow either entirely at fault or partly at fault for your injuries.
For instance, if you suffered a spinal cord injury because of a fall at a construction site, the insurance company for the business may argue that you should have watched where you were going. If this is the case, the Jackman Law Firm can help you by sending a subpoena for documents from the company, interviewing key witnesses, and speaking to the police to see if we can do everything possible to prove your case in your favor. Feel free to call for a free consultation.