Crane Accidents and Injuries Lawsuit Attorney
Crane accidents often result in catastrophic injuries and even death across the state of California. There are a variety of reasons that can cause a crane accident, such as improper setup causing the crane to collapse.
Crane accidents are among the most dangerous and unfortunately common, workplace accidents. It's not a secret that the construction industry is one of the most hazardous jobs in the United States.
Even though the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has set up a wide range of safety standards that everyone on a construction site must follow, there are still accidents leading to severe injuries.
Construction workers must stay on constant alert for falling objects, unstable foundations, defective ladders, heavy machinery, and other site hazards.
Even the most vigilant of workers can find themselves the victim of crane accidents. When such an incident results in injuries, workers have the right to pursue legal action against the responsible party.
Our injury lawyers help individuals and construction workers who were injured in a crane-related accident in California. Victims and members of their families deserve full and fair financial compensation for their injuries.
We may be able to file a lawsuit for a crane-related accident based on negligence, premises liability, or product liability. Our Los Angeles personal injury attorneys will provide a closer review below.
What are the Common Causes of Crane Accidents?
When officials in charge of construction sites fail to prioritize the safety of their workers, crane accidents can occur.
As noted, while OSHA standards have been put in place to prevent injuries and accidents, compliance often cannot completely prevent accidents from happening.
Construction industry professionals work in inherently dangerous environments; it's up to everyone on the job site to work together to mitigate risk. Some of the common causes of crane accidents include:
- improper crane setup causing collapse,
- choosing the inappropriate type of crane for the job,
- use of crane outside manufacturer's specifications,
- crane contact with power lines during use,
- failure to follow the safety standards.
Overloaded machines often cause crane accidents. This can cause equipment to overturn, especially when the stabilizing outriggers are not properly deployed.
Mistakenly dropped crane loads are another common hazard – dropped materials can pose a real threat to workers on the ground.
All of these kinds of issues stem from improper maintenance, inadequate training, or negligence on the part of employers.
Readers should note that some there are cases where the crane operator made a mistake that caused the injuries.
In this situation, crane operators could still receive financial compensation, but their recovery would be reduced based on California's comparative negligence laws.
Workers' Compensation vs. Personal Injury Lawsuits
When an employee is injured on the job in California, they may have limited options for pursuing a personal injury lawsuit. That's because workers' compensation typically covers expenses related to the injury.
A workers' compensation claim ensures that the worker can pay their medical bills and be compensated for when they're unable to work.
Workers can file these claims without having to prove a case against their employer. As a result, the employee will have limited options for filing a lawsuit or seeking compensation for things like pain and suffering.
Of course, some situations warrant legal action, especially when a negligent third party causes an accident.
For instance, if an employee suffered injuries in a crane accident at work and later learns that the machine they were working on was defective, they can take legal action against the company that manufactures the equipment.
Filing a personal injury lawsuit can help injured workers seek damages related to their accident.
Compensation for Victims of Crane Accidents
Both economic and non-economic damages may be available for victims of crane accidents in California.
In personal injury lawsuits, compensatory damages aim to financially restore the plaintiff to their position before the accident.
If a victim can prove their injuries were the result of someone else's negligence, they may be entitled to compensation for:
- property damage,
- medical bills,
- ER expenses,
- lost wages,
- loss of earning potential,
- loss of consortium,
- emotional distress, and
- pain and suffering.
If someone was killed in a crane accident, then their family members can file a wrongful death lawsuit against the responsible party and could recover the following damages:
- amount deceased person would have earned as income,
- funeral and burial expenses, and
- compensation for the loss of companionship and support.
How is Liability Determined After an Accident?
Determining which parties are at fault following a crane accident can be a challenge. The investigation process can be incredibly lengthy, with lawyers, local, and federal officials all weighing in.
Official inquiries can take months to complete. In most cases, a personal injury law firm can investigate on behalf of its clients.
Their findings must be shared with governmental investigators who determine which details are included in their official reports.
They ultimately disclose which negligent parties are responsible for compensating plaintiffs or their surviving family members.
Depending on the details of the crane accident, injured workers could file a lawsuit against any of the following:
- construction company,
- crane manufacturer,
- property owner,
- other construction workers,
- government agencies.
What to Do If You've Been Involved in a Crane Accident
If you've been injured in a crane accident, it's important to seek medical attention right away. You'll want to get checked out by a company-approved physician.
Should injuries permit you to stay at the scene, gather evidence for a potential personal injury claim.
Document your injuries and any damage to the crane involved in the incident. Be sure to report your injury to your employer, too – it's necessary if you're hoping to file a workers' compensation claim.
After leaving the scene, write down as much about the incident as you can remember. Keep any photos or videos you recorded handy, and back them up to ensure you'll always have access to them.
Should the accident warrant legal action, these could be important pieces of evidence.
Our injury lawyers can not only help you gather evidence to identify liable parties to file a crane accident lawsuit, but we can also help you by managing your medical treatment and filing a workers' compensation claim on your behalf.
Further, we can also file a personal injury claim with the insurance company of the party who was responsible.
Legal Rights of Crane Accident Victims
Crane accident victims injured at work have the right to pursue a workers' compensation claim. There's a lot you'll need to know about California's system to collect these benefits, though.
If you're interested in receiving a settlement instead of weekly or biweekly payments, you'll want an attorney to represent you in negotiations with your employer's insurance company.
Depending on the circumstances that led to the incident, crane accident victims in California also have the right to file a personal injury lawsuit against negligent third parties.
An attorney can help you understand your rights and chart the best course forward.
We first need to closely review all the specific details of the crane accident to determine the best strategy to receive maximum compensation for your injuries.
Injury Justice Law Firm is located in Los Angeles County and serves clients throughout Southern California.
Contact our office for a free consultation at (818) 781-1570, or you can fill out our contact form.