Construction sites are one of the most dangerous work environments. From heavy equipment, materials, and tools swinging through the air, to explosive liquids and powerful and dangerous machines, there are many ways in which a worker can find themselves injured on the job. These injuries are often severe, and it is not unheard of for workers to die from an accident on a construction site.
Being prepared, cautious, and safe through your own means is one thing (wearing helmets, gloves, and other protective gear), but it is difficult to always be sure if your work environment is as safe as it can be, as equipment can malfunction without warning, or a co-worker can make a mistake and lead to a workplace accident. Employers are responsible for the safety of their workers, and it is their responsibility that tools, equipment, and overall environment is as safe as possible.
What sorts of injuries happen from construction site accidents?
- Amputation of limbs: Perhaps you had an accident with a saw, or something heavy fell on you and crushed your limb and it could not be saved. These are traumatic amputations, and they are not wholly uncommon on construction sites. In fact, 40% of amputations are due to traumatic injuries where the limb cannot be saved. If you lose a finger, arm, or leg, you will have to suffer life-long pain, both physical and emotional; you will have to have medical treatments the rest of your life.
- Broken bones: Broken bone injuries can vary in severity. Some broken bones or fractures require a cast and rest, while others may require surgery or implants. If fractures are not treated promptly or properly, it can lead to long-lasting effects such as chronic pain or stiffness. With more severe injuries, the medical treatment may need to stretch into your future depending on the implants or surgeries that were done.
- Spinal injuries, including full and partial paralysis: Spinal cord injuries are some of the more severe types of injuries as your spine is the nexus to your central nervous system. Every command from your brain to your nerves and limbs has to travel through your spine. If you suffer from a complete spinal cord injury, then you lose feeling and function of your body beneath the site of the injury. If you still have some feeling and function beneath the injury, that is called an incomplete spinal cord injury. This is also a description of full and partial paralysis. These sorts of injuries often occur from falls or when equipment falls on the victim.
- Permanent loss of hearing or vision: Hearing and sight loss are often permanent injuries that can be sustained while on the construction site. The worst thing is that you might not be aware that you are losing your hearing at all until it is too late to reverse the damage. The International Safety Equipment Association states that “Regular 8-hour exposures to 85 dBA can damage your hearing. If you have to use a jackhammer for 1 hour per day, you may experience hearing damage. The higher the noise level, the faster the hearing loss.” And that’s bad news for construction workers who often use equipment that regularly operate above that 85 dBA (decibels A) exposure level that jackhammers operate at.
- Traumatic brain injuries: Having your head struck is dangerous no matter how hard it is hit. Even a slight concussion can turn deadly if it is not evaluated by a medical professional. When you hit your head, it can cause bruises and abrasions in the brain, leading to swelling and internal bleeding. According to the CDC, the number one cause of head injuries and TBIs are falls. This is why you wear safety equipment such as harnesses and helmets. One TBI can lead to effects such as headaches, nausea, dizziness, confusion, drowsiness, vomiting, loss of consciousness, and amnesia.
- Crushing injuries: When you are put under constant, extreme pressure by an object such as heavy equipment or a construction site vehicle. Crushing accidents can cause injuries such as internal bleeding, fractured bones, nerve injuries, and lacerations.
Do I need a lawyer for my Nashville construction site injury?
If you suffered these injuries due to the neglect of your employer, or through a defect in a tool, then you should definitely find a construction site accident lawyer. You need to make sure that you get everything you need through your workers’ compensation benefits, and if there are any hiccups or problems (which there often are), we will be there to find the solution that’s best for you. With workers’ compensation, there are two types of benefits that you can receive:
- Medical care: For work-related injuries and illnesses. The Tennessee Department of Labor states, “Injured workers who have suffered a compensable workplace injury are entitled to receive medical treatment, at no cost, for as long as the authorized treating physician (ATP) relates it to the work-related injury. Medical benefits include medical care and payment of medical bills.”
- Partial wage replacement: For employees who are unable to work; or continue to work but earn less pay while recovering from their injuries. “Employees who have suffered a compensable workplace injury and are taken off work by the authorized treating physician may be entitled to receive wage replacement benefits for the work time they miss.”
If you have suffered a severe injury at a construction site while on the job, then you are possibly missing out on benefits and compensation. You are the one in pain, you are the one whose life may be irrevocably changed. It’s you who deserves to be paid for your pain and suffering. If you have been injured, then you should call our hard working and experienced attorneys at the Rocky McElhaney Law Firm. Call us at 615-425-2500 or fill out our contact form to schedule a free consultation with you at one of our offices in Nashville, Hendersonville, or Clarksville.