Breaking Down the Major Kinds of Construction Injuries

by | Oct 29, 2021 | Construction Accidents

In the United States, injuries cause the average worker to miss over thirty days per year. The serious injury loss rate is much higher. It’s also much higher in certain industries, such as the construction industry. These jobs are inherently dangerous. Making matters worse, construction has one of the largest percentages of LEP (Limited English Proficiency) workers in Kentucky. These hard workers are often completely unaware of the hazards they face.

Frequently, a construction worker represents a family’s primary or only source of income. So, a few weeks without a paycheck could be financially devastating, to say nothing of the accompanying medical bills. Fortunately, a Lexington personal injury attorney is usually able to obtain compensation for these injuries. More on that below.

Trauma Injuries

Falls are the most common sudden trauma injuries in the construction sector. The injury could be a slip and fall or a fall from a height. Falls from as little as four stories above ground are normally fatal. As for slip and falls, some of the serious injuries these victims often sustain include:

  • Blood Loss: When people fall and land hard, their internal organs usually smash against each other. As these organs have no protective skin layer, they usually bleed very badly. In fact, many victims lose so much blood that they are on the brink of hypovolemic shock by the time they reach a hospital.
  • Head Injuries: The aforemnetioned motion also causes the brain to slam violently against the inside of the skull. The resulting injury is often permanent. Once brain cells die, they usually don’t regenerate. Doctors and physical therapists can only keep the injury from getting worse and treat brain injruy symptoms.
  • Broken Bones: After a seriosu fall, doctors normally use metal parts to reconstruct shattered bones. Since the surgery is so invasive, the recovery time, including physical therapy, is much longer, and the result is much more uncertain.

Other construction trauma injuries include caught between, struck by, and elecrocution injuries. Caught between injuries usually involve a motor vehicle. Large construction vehicles are difficult to control, especially at busy construction sites. Struck by injuries often involve dropped hand tools, like hammers. When someone drops these objects from high above ground, people on the ground risk serious injuries. Electrocutions could cause serious burns. They could also cause fall injuries, since the arc blast usually throws a victim through the air.

Occupational Diseases

Hearing loss, dust inhalation, and repetitive stress disorders are the most common kinds of construction-related occupational diseases. These conditions develop over the course of more than one work shift.

Exposure to noises as low as 35 decibels, which is basically a lawnmower engine, could cause permanent hearing loss. If doctors treat these injuries early enough, a simple hearing aid might fix the problem. More advanced cases often require risky and invasive surgery to repair a damaged inner ear.

Construction sites are not only noisy. They are also very dusty. Mucg of this dust is silica dust. These tiny particles often clog breathing passengers and even cause scar tissue to develop. Such respiratory diseases are very difficult to treat, especially if the victim has a pre-existing condition. Many times, the only option is a lung transplant, and even this procedure only slows the progress of the disease.

Construction workers spend most of their day bending, stooping, stretching, and kneeling. These positions are very hard on the knees, ankles, and other joints. These joints can only take so much wear and tear. Eventually, these injuries affect mobility. Usually, complete rest and physical therapy are the only available treatments.

Compensation Available

Usually, workers’ compensation benefits are available in these situations. These no-fault benefits usually replace lost wages and pay reasonable medical expenses. Although victims need not prove fault or negligence, the workers’ compensation administrative claims process is often long and frustrating. Primarily, that’s because the amount of money in the system has decreased in recent years, so it’s harder to get a fair-sized piece of a shrinking financial pie.

Some injured victims may file civil claims and obtain additional compensation for their emotional distress and other noneconomic losses. This option is usually available if, for whatever reason, the employer did not have workers’ compensation insurance. These employers usually cannot use assumption of the risk, contributory negligence, and some other common defenses. So, it’s easier to prove negligence and obtain compensation.

This avenue is also available if a defective product caused the worker’s injury. In these cases, manufacturers are usually strictly liable for the injuries their defective products cause.

Injury victims are usually entitled to substantial compensation. For a free consultation with an experienced personal injury lawyer in Lexington, contact the Goode Law Office, PLLC. We do not charge upfront legal fees in these matters. #goodelawyers