The hazards present in construction work are well known, particularly if you are a worker in the industry. One piece of machinery that is noted for being dangerous in industrial workplaces is the forklift. According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), in the U.S. alone there are almost 100 forklift-related deaths a year, with another 20,000 seriously injured in a forklift-related accident. Although these machines are an integral part of construction and other industries, the dangers they present to workers are significant.
Strict rules are in place to protect those working on and around forklifts, but these rules are not always followed. If negligence on the part of any employee or a company led to your forklift accident, you have the right to pursue damages from the responsible party. Contact my Albany area law firm today to see how I can help you get the compensation you deserve.
Types Of Forklift Accidents
The CDC lists the percentages of the most common types of forklift accidents as:
- Forklift overturns – 22%
- Worker on foot struck by forklift – 20%
- Victim crushed by forklift – 16%
- Fall from forklift – 9%
Forklifts heavy, are capable of lifting substantial weight and are known to move quickly around a work site. It is not surprising that these machines can cause so much destruction when operated incorrectly. Even if the forklift does not cause an injury, an unsecured or improperly handled load can fall and hurt workers as well.
Injuries Resulting From Forklift Accidents
Injuries caused by forklifts may include:
- Brain injuries
- Spinal injuries
- Internal injuries
The Need For Safe Operation
The CDC has a long list of safety precautions that every forklift operator and every worker that is around forklifts should observe. Some of these safety guidelines include:
- Do not operate a forklift unless you have been trained and licensed
- Use seat belts
- Use extreme caution on grades or ramps
- Do not raise or lower forks while moving
- Do not use the forklift to elevate workers on the forks
Regulations require employers to ensure that everyone using the forklift is qualified to do so, and that everyone working on site knows how to interact safely with the forklift. Unfortunately, on construction sites and at many businesses there is constant pressure to perform at maximum capacity. This many mean driving faster than is safe, moving loads that are beyond the specifications of the machine, or encouraging workers to operate the forklift when they are not completely qualified.
Establishing Fault For the Accident
The key to a successful accident case is proving that your injuries were caused by the negligence of another party. It could be a careless employee that was driving too fast, or a company that failed to property maintain the forklift to save money. Even if you are initially taken care of by your employer’s workers’ comp insurance, you may still be able to pursue damages against a responsible party. If the accident was caused by the negligence of a third part – like a sub-contractor or equipment manufacturer – you can also pursue a third-party claim.
I have successfully proven fault in accident cases for many different clients. If you choose to pursue a case with me, I will se my experience and understanding of injury law to prove the fault of the responsible party.
Contact an Attorney Today
If you or a loved one has been hurt in a forklift accident due to the negligence of another, contact me now to discuss what happened. I offer free initial consultations, so speaking to me will cost you nothing. If you have a case, I will work tirelessly to see that you get the compensation you need following your injuries.