Boston Caught or Stuck in Equipment Injury Attorney
Construction workers use a variety of tools and equipment to perform their jobs. While heavy machinery, power tools and other equipment are essential to the trade, they can cause serious injury and even death when workers get caught or stuck in equipment.
According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, caught-in hazards are one of the four most deadly dangers on a construction site.
Contractors could prevent the majority of these accidents from happening by instituting and following safety protocols. However, many contractors are hyper-focused on profits and are willing to cut corners to get in the lowest bid, even if that means sacrificing employee safety.
The caught in equipment injury attorneys at the Law Offices of Jeffrey S. Glassman have been fighting for the rights of Boston construction workers and their families for more than two decades and making sure that negligent contractors and property owners pay the price for unsafe jobsites. Our law firm has a proven track record of securing large settlements and verdicts for construction accident victims.
We encourage you to contact us today for a free legal consultation.All Construction Workers Are at Risk for Caught-in or Caught-Between Accidents
Caught-in or caught-between accidents occur when a worker is caught, squeezed, crushed, pinched or compressed between two or more objects or between parts of a single object. Construction workers are at risk of getting caught between a moving and stationery object (such as between a piece of heavy machinery and a wall), caught in collapsing structures and materials, and caught in tools, machinery or other equipment.
While all construction workers face caught-in or caught-between risks, these workers are most likely to be caught in equipment and injured:
- Carpenters and other workers who use various types of saws
- Laborers who perform a wide variety of tasks
- Heavy equipment operators, especially crane operators
- Workers who perform tasks on scaffolding or help assemble or disassemble scaffolding
In Massachusetts, employees are entitled to workers’ compensation benefits for work-related injuries, regardless of who’s at fault. An attorney can help you file a claim for benefits and recover compensation from negligent parties, including property owners, subcontractors and equipment manufacturers.Common Causes of Caught-in and Caught-Between Construction Accidents
While there are numerous scenarios that can result in a worker getting caught in construction equipment, here are some common hazards:
- Tools and equipment that have been stripped of guards and other protections
- Tools and equipment that have not been properly shut off, deenergized or locked out
- Improperly maintained tools and equipment
- Machinery used in a way that causes it to tip over
- Improperly constructed or braced scaffolds
- Inadequately trained workers
- Loose or baggy clothing that gets caught or snagged in moving machine parts
Tools and machines with rotating, reciprocating and transversing motions are most likely to ensnare workers as are machines that cut, punch, shear, or bend. This includes circular saws, bandsaws, and drills. Workers can get caught in belts, gears, chains, pulleys, drums, flywheels and other machine parts.
Safety guards protect workers from exposed moving parts and points of operation and should not be removed or altered.
When tools and machinery malfunction and cause a worker to suffer an injury, the product manufacturer, distributor and retailer can be held liable. An attorney can help you file a product liability suit against all negligent parties.Amputations Can Occur When Construction Workers Are Caught in Tools and Machinery
Workers involved in caught-in or caught-between accidents can suffer catastrophic injuries that require expensive medical care and long-term rehabilitation. Injured workers may never fully recover and may be forced into another line of work where they make less money than before.
Common caught-in or caught-between injuries include:
- Crush injuries
- Degloving injuries
- Nerve damage
- Muscle, sprains, strains and tears
- Head and brain injuries, including concussions
- Neck and back injuries
Fortunately, caught-in or caught-between accidents can be prevented when a contractor is focused on maintaining a safe jobsite.
Here are some safety protocols that contractors can mandate to keep workers safe:
- Safety guards should be installed on all power tools and equipment should be in good condition.
- Equipment should be turned off when not in use.
- Equipment should be used on flat surfaces to eliminate tip-over risks.
- Cranes, forklifts and other heavy machinery should be equipped with roll-over protections and seatbelts.
- Heavy machinery load limits should be followed.
- A trained employee should supervise scaffolding assembly and disassembly.
- All personnel should receive proper training and be given appropriate personal protective equipment.
Construction workers should wear properly fitting clothing and protective equipment and avoid wearing jewelry. Loose or baggy clothing can get caught in machinery and cause a worker to sustain serious injury. Ill-fitting gloves, long sleeves, wide pant legs and even rings put workers at risk for caught-in accidents.
It’s worth noting that one in ten construction workers are women. Female construction workers should be provided with gear that’s designed for their bodies to ensure a proper fit.
OSHA recommends that contractors designate “a competent person” on jobsites to identify and correct any hazards. In addition, this person should supervise riskier construction activities, such as erecting scaffolding and demolitions.
Workers should be encouraged to report any hazards to the foreman or project supervisor. OSHA has safeguards in place to protect workers who report safety violations from retaliation. For help with a caught-in or caught-between injury claim, contact The Law Offices of Jeffrey S. Glassman, LLC at (617) 777-7777 or use our online