Scaffolding is a common sight in cities and around construction areas. Nearly 2.3 million construction workers use scaffolding everyday to accomplish tasks that cannot be accomplished with ladders. Unfortunately, thousands of construction workers and innocent bystanders are, and will continue to be, seriously injured or killed from scaffolding accidents. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) reported that there around 50 fatalities and 4,500 catastrophic injuries every year attributable to scaffolding accidents. The majority of these scaffolding accidents were the result of failing to comply with OSHA’s scaffolding standards and regulations. Seventy-two percent of injuries and fatalities were attributed to factors that could have been controlled and prevented if the proper regulations had been followed.
Scaffolding Collapse in Philadelphia
Scaffolding accidents are often caused by planking or supports collapsing, employers failing to provide adequate fall protection systems, failure to remove or repair damaged scaffolding components, failing to train workers in scaffolding safety, omission of essential components like guard rails or building anchors, failing to have qualified people inspect scaffolding structure, using substandard or defective components, cables snapping, poor assembly, failing to use engineers to design and construct scaffolding when required, lack of maintenance, flawed design, manufacturing defects, and workers and innocent passersby being struck by falling objects. Investigations into scaffolding accidents have revealed a lack of regulatory oversight and inspection for the use of scaffolding, as well as a multitude of manufacturing and design defects.
Scaffolding can be a safe and efficient way to complete construction projects if regulations are followed and equipment is properly manufactured and maintained. Safety harnesses and lifelines are required for certain types of scaffolds, and have saved lives when scaffolding has collapsed or failed. However, many companies and employers fail to provide even these basics safety features endangering not only workers and employees, but also innocent bystanders below. In fact, OSHA reported that over 77% of scaffolds lacked mandatory guard rails. Without basic fall prevention measures like harnesses and life lines, workers can sustain serious, life-threatening injuries from falling several stories like traumatic head and brain injuries, spinal cord injury, paralysis, internal organ injury, back injury, broken bones, amputation, and loss of life.
For over three decades our experienced Pennsylvania scaffolding accident attorneys and Philadelphia construction injury lawyers have successfully represented victims and families of those catastrophically injured and wrongfully killed as a result of preventable scaffolding accidents and failures. There are special laws in Pennsylvania that are designed to protect workers and the families of workers who are injured while on scaffolds to recover compensation for medical bills, rehabilitation, lost earnings, and pain and suffering. When scaffolding falls or collapses, specialized skill and knowledge of this area of law is needed. The experienced catastrophic injury lawyers at Reiff & Bily have a successful track record representing those injured as a result of faulty or collapsing scaffolding, construction injuries, and premise liability claims. Catastrophic injuries caused by scaffolding accidents can result in high medical costs and lifelong medical intervention.
Our attorneys have recovered hundreds of millions in damages on behalf of catastrophically injured victims and their families.
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