The building and construction industry is considered one of the most dangerous industries globally. The hazard and health risks are enormous for workers. There are several regulations in place on how to prevent construction site accidents, but such incidents still happen.
Within a split second, a worker can die through a workplace accident like falling from a height or a struck by a piece of equipment. The tedious nature of the job makes it prevalent for physical disorders, including skin diseases, eye injuries, back injuries, and upper limb disorders among others.
That aside, the materials and chemicals used in the industry expose workers to respiratory and other internal disorders. For example, long exposure to asbestos in contaminated construction materials like paints can cause mesothelioma in construction workers.
Considering the numerous health risk, construction workers must get compensation after a workplace accident or disease.
Every year, thousands of construction workers are hospitalized for work-related injuries. However, some employers try to shield their responsibilities or shortchange employers after a workplace accident or disease.
Some employees mostly cover their own medical bills and other expenses without any assistance from the employer. But do you know that you can take your employer on to get all deserving compensation? Here is how.
Read More: 10 Checklists to Ensure Safety at Construction Sites
What to do after a construction site accident
Workers are entitled to workers’ compensation after a workplace accident. However, it is critical to take certain steps to secure your legal right to compensation.
Don’t forget that most employers would want to avoid paying such benefits, so would want to frustrate the process. Here are some steps to take after a construction site injury.
Seek medical attention
The first action to take after a workplace accident is to quickly seek medical care. A healthcare professional needs to assess the level of injury and recommend a treatment.
You will need such a diagnosis even for minor injuries. This is because some so-called minor injuries if not treated can cause serious future health conditions.
Seeking medical treatment is even more important because it validates your compensation claims. You will need a medical report and receipt of bills to receive your benefits.
Document the accident
Documenting the incident serves as evidence when seeking compensation. This is easier if other workers were present during the accident. They can serve as witnesses to the incident.
However, you may still have to document whatever happened. You need to take note of what happened, where, how, the time, and the cause of the incident.
If the victim is left incapacitated after the accident, other processes like relying on witnesses can be used.
Rely on witnesses for information
Accident victims who suffer major injuries or go unconscious after an accident will have to rely on witnesses for information. Witnesses can be colleague workers on site or bystanders who saw what happened.
It is possible that someone accidentally captured the incident on video or a CCTV camera nearby recorded it. Some may have even taken pictures of whatever happened. You can rely on such people for vivid information and evidence of the happenings.
Read More: Safety Measures At Construction Site
Report the accident to the site supervisor
Your next action is to report the accident to your supervisor. This could be before or after seeking medical treatment depending on the extent of the injury.
For example, a person bleeding profusely or badly injured after an accident needs quick medical attention before any official formalities are done. This is to save the victim’s life. Afterward, the victim or a representative can report to the supervisor.
Go with evidence
When reporting the incident to your site supervisor, go with all the needed evidence. This should include a doctor’s report, pictures or videos of the incident, and any other supporting documentation.
You need to prove that the accident happened during a work session and that it wasn’t due to your act of negligence. The only way to prove this is by providing the aforementioned evidence.
Contact a lawyer
Ideally, there should be an internal mechanism to take care of workers’ compensation. However, some employers would want to cheat their way out and avoid paying the required amount. This is when you will need an attorney.
For example, if a Pittsburgh construction worker develops mesothelioma due to asbestos exposure, the employer must pay compensation.
This is because the Pennsylvania workers’ compensation act stipulates that employers must “covers medical expenses and wage loss for employees who have been injured in the course and scope of their employment.”
So, if for whatever reason the employer decides not to pay such compensation, “experts advise that you hire a competent and experienced Pittsburgh mesothelioma lawyer who is well versed in the Pennsylvania workers’ compensation act to pursue your case. With enough evidence, you the lawyer can help you get whatever injury benefits you deserve.
When it comes to workers’ compensation benefits, victims must provide enough evidence. Depending on your state laws, you may have a certain timeframe to report such injuries to the employer.
This can range from two to seven years. Take note of all these and speak to a lawyer when having any challenges.
Who is liable for a construction site accident or disease?
Liability can vary depending on the circumstances of the incident, but potential parties could include the construction company, property owner, equipment manufacturer, or other parties involved in the construction project.
What should I do if I am injured on a construction site?
Seek medical attention immediately and report the incident to your employer. It’s also important to gather as much information as possible about the incident, including names and contact information of witnesses, and take photos of the scene if possible.
How long do I have to file a claim for compensation?
The statute of limitations can vary by state, but it’s important to act quickly and consult with a lawyer to ensure your claim is filed in a timely manner.
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