Louisiana workers may have heard about a scaffolding accident that recently took place in North Carolina and which left three workers dead and a fourth badly injured. The accident took place when a scaffold on a construction site collapsed and fell. The incident serves as an example of numerous current trends in the construction industry.
While the industry is generally becoming less dangerous, it is also relying more than ever on Latino workers, who may have a higher fatality rate in the construction industry. This could possibly be attributed to a language barrier or workers being afraid to report safety violations for fear of losing their jobs of being deported. Additionally, Latino workers may not get adequate training for their jobs.
Another current construction trend is mast climbers, which were not introduced until more recently, in the mid 1980s. The 2008 recession caused a lull in the building of high-rises; however, with the economy improving, there has been resurgence in the need for mast climbers. Typically, these are believed to be as safe as scaffolds, but if they fall, the results can often be catastrophic and fatal. Mast climbers, according to OSHA, are also not required to make use of lifelines tethering workers to buildings.
A worker who has suffered an injury at work due to a fall might want to seek the assistance of a lawyer who has experience in workers’ compensation cases in order to receive benefits to cover their medical costs and a percentage of wages that were lost as a result of missing work. In some cases, if the accident was due to the negligence of a non-employer third party, it may be possible to maintain a separate personal injury lawsuit as well.