New York Construction Loader Accident Attorneys
Construction workers in New York understand that using heavy equipment is just a normal part of the job. While these machines often pose a risk, it can be impossible to complete a job without them. Accidents involving heavy machinery, including loaders, can happen at any time. Sadly, these unexpected construction accidents put lives in jeopardy and can leave workers unable to go back to work.
When someone is unable to return to work due to an injury, it can create many problems in that person’s life. Injured workers can expect to face financial hardship, grief, pain, and more. It is not just the worker who suffers, but also his or her family who must also deal with the consequences. When accidents happen on New York construction sites, injured workers may have no choice but to file a claim to seek compensation.
At Hill & Moin, our clients know what it feels like “to have a lawyer in the family.” To us, that is much more than a catchphrase. You can feel comfortable with us.
You should never have to jump through hoops to get financial compensation. That is why our team of experienced attorneys stands ready to help guide you toward the justice you deserve.
Call Hill & Moin today at (212) 668-6000 for a free case evaluation.
New York Construction Accident Statistics
According to New York City government records, there were 746 construction accidents in 2018. Those accidents resulted in 761 injuries and 12 fatalities. 4.02 percent of these mishaps were the result of faulty mechanical construction equipment, including all types of loaders. These numbers only represent incidents in the City of New York.
Additional data was collected in a report by NYCOSH, which found that the construction accident fatality rate in New York remains higher than the national average. 24 percent of all worker deaths in the state happen on a construction site versus 21 percent across the US.
Meanwhile, OSHA fines for construction accidents have continued to increase for 5 years in a row. 2020’s fines averaged 39 percent higher than 2019.
If you were hurt in a New York construction loader accident, call Hill & Moin today. You deserve to be compensated for your injuries and do not have to face an uncertain future alone. Call us today for a free consultation with experienced personal injury attorneys.
What Causes Construction Loader Accidents?
No matter the type of machine used on the job, the potential for accidents and injuries is always there. The following is a list of the common causes of construction loader accidents.
Lowering the bucket too quickly
When a loader operator is using the machine and lowers the bucket too quickly, this can create a hazardous situation. While workers have a job to do, safety must always come first. An operator who lowers the bucket too quickly risks hitting another worker or an object. Material inside the bucket can also become dislodged when being moved too fast, spilling out onto the job site.
Driving on uneven terrain
Anyone who operates any type of heavy machinery on a construction site must do so with extra care. This is especially true when attempting to maneuver a vehicle over uneven terrain. Loaders in particular can have unbalanced weight distribution which can lead to the machine tipping over, potentially causing injuries.
Improperly trained workers
It is the responsibility of employers to ensure that the workers they hire are trained to operate machinery safely. This can include providing safety equipment and manuals. Workers may also need to be certified where applicable. If an under-trained employee causes your injuries, you may be able to sue your employer for compensation.
Mechanical failure and poor maintenance
Mechanical failure can be the result of company owners failing to maintain their loaders properly. Worn buckets or mechanical arms can prevent a loader from doing its job properly. Mechanical failures also happen right out of the factory when there is a design or manufacturing flaw.
Thus, perhaps the maintenance crew is to blame. Or maybe the loader manufacturer is at fault. Your lawyer should be able to determine who is at fault for causing your injuries, in order to pursue compensation.
Operating a loader around a construction site is much more complicated than driving a car. This requires the person at the controls to be sober and vigilant. If an operator is impaired by drugs, alcohol, or even fatigue, he or she can cause a devastating accident.
Construction loaders are massive and have a large turning radius. An operator who is distracted can strike another worker or a vehicle if he or she is not paying attention. These machines can also tip over if overloaded and driven incorrectly.
Who is Responsible for a Construction Loader Accident?
One of the first tasks your lawyer will have is to identify the party primarily responsible for the accident that caused your injuries. For example, if the loader you were using malfunctioned, it can take some time to determine why the incident happened. There are several possibilities that must be considered.
Several questions your lawyer may ask you include:
- Was your employer negligent in maintaining the equipment?
- Could there have been a design defect or an error made during the manufacture of the machine?
- Was the loader recently repaired by an unqualified repair technician who did a bad job?
- Was there a faulty part used in a bad repair that had nothing to do with the technician?
- Was an unqualified employee responsible for maintaining or operating the loader?
- Did the employer fail to provide proper safety gear or guidelines?
Proving Negligence in a New York Construction Loader Accident
If you were injured in a construction loader accident, an experienced lawyer can determine who is at fault for what happened. This is not an easy process, as it will require proving several factors to establish negligence was involved.
The four factors needed to prove negligence include:
- Duty of care: Does the defendant have a legal responsibility to protect the plaintiff from unreasonable harm? Legally, your employer must provide a safe working environment. Manufacturers of loaders also share a burden in ensuring their products are safe to use.
- Breach of duty: If you are legally obligated to provide a duty of care to someone and fail to do so, that is considered a breach of that duty. This breach of duty is typically the result of careless and negligent behavior.
- Causation: If you were injured in a work accident, you would have to prove that your injuries were caused by the defendant’s negligent actions. If you had a significant part in causing your own injuries, it is not likely you would win your compensation case.
- Damages: After being injured due to someone else’s negligence, you would likely suffer damages as a result. These damages would be losses you sustained due to your injuries. A good example would be medical bills from your treatment or lost wages from missing time off work.
The goal will be to determine whether these factors meet the burden of establishing negligence. Without proving each factor, you may not be able to prove the defendant is responsible for your injuries.
What Options Do You Have After a Construction Accident?
Unless you are an independent contractor, you should have some coverage from your employer’s workers’ compensation insurance. While money from workers’ comp will help, though, it may not be enough to cover all your losses.
Construction accidents can cause major damage and be particularly devastating to your livelihood. You may be left looking for additional options outside of insurance payments. In which case the next step would be to consider filing a personal injury lawsuit against the party responsible for causing your injuries.
In New York, construction workers are unable to sue their employers if covered by their workers’ comp insurance. Therefore, it is important to hire an experienced attorney who will give your case the full attention it deserves.
Evidence Your Lawyer Can Use to Support Your Construction Loader Accident Case
Determining whether you have a solid case will require a thorough investigation into the incident. It’s possible that you could file a personal injury lawsuit against third parties such as property owners, contractors, and others.
Your lawyer can use evidence to support your case, including:
- Medical records
- Witness testimony
- Expert testimony
- Internal accident reports
- Maintenance reports
- Police reports
- Employer safety reports
- Photos and videos from the scene
You Should Call Hill & Moin Right Away for a Free Consultation
After someone endures a construction accident, life can get complicated and scary. You do not know whether you will be able to weather the storm. That is why you should call Hill & Moin today to learn more about the options available to you. To us, you are like family, and we will do whatever we can to give you peace of mind.
Personal injury laws in New York can be complex. To get the most out of a claim for compensation, you should hire an attorney who is experienced and ready to fight for you. At Hill & Moin, our goal is to always provide our clients with dignity and respect. If we take on your case, we will do everything within our power to help you get the compensation you and your family need to survive.
Call Hill & Moin today at (212) 668-6000 to speak to one of our attorneys for a free case evaluation. There are no fees to pay unless you win, so don’t worry. Call us today to learn about your Personal Injury Recovery SolutionsⓇ.
Don’t wonder about your rights!