The famed Brooklyn Bridge in New York took fourteen years to complete in the late 1800s. Today, most companies expect projects of this size to be completed in fourteen months. That accelerated timetable sets the stage for preventable construction site injuries as there is little ramp-up for the project. Frequently, workers are hired and onsite the same day and may not be immediately aware of safety regulations and policies.
Largely because of the serious nature of the injuries, construction routinely sits at or near the top of those “most dangerous job” lists. These incidents are even worse on remote sites, where medical help is far away.
At Williams Hart & Boundas, our Houston construction accident lawyers are committed to your medical and financial recovery after a workplace accident. These two things go hand in hand. In Texas, injured workers can choose their own doctors. So, our Houston construction accident lawyers connect victims who specialize in construction injuries. Additionally, we fight for the compensation you deserve.
The Fatal Four
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration estimates that the number of fatal construction injuries would be cut in half if the following four categories were eliminated:
- Falls: Especially if the victim had a pre-existing condition, a fall from as little as four stories above ground is often fatal. Even if the victim survives, the resulting injuries, like head injuries, are very difficult to treat.
- Struck By: Speaking of high places, there is a story that a penny dropped from the top of the Empire State Building is fatal to a pedestrian on the street. This story is partially true, highlighting the danger of falling hammers and other small objects.
- Caught Between: Speaking of semi-true stories, in 2003, an elevator accident decapitated a Houston doctor. Once again, this story illustrates the danger of unforgiving lifts and elevators, especially at busy construction sites.
- Electrocution: Part of the aforementioned compressed schedule includes hiring workers with limited English proficiency. These individuals are hard workers, but they might not be able to read or understand warning signs about live wires.
OSHA is the federal agency charged with keeping workplaces safe. But this small agency has only one inspector for every 59,000 workers. So, many dangerous construction sites go undetected.
Choosing the Right Lawyer
Once upon a time, victims of the Fatal Four and other construction accidents did not need to worry about this step. Workers’ compensation was a streamlined process that quickly paid benefits to injured workers. But those days are gone. Today, unless you have a solid Houston construction accident lawyer, you will almost certainly end up settling for less.
There are numerous construction accident lawyers in Houston. At first glance, they all seem alike. But upon closer inspection, there are some important differences. Some of these differences include:
- Experience: Law school teaches people how to think like lawyers, but it does not teach the nuts-and-bolts of being a lawyer. Your damage claim is too important to be on-the-job-training for an inexperienced attorney.
- Location: For injury victims, getting from place to place is often a significant ordeal, especially on a bad day. Although an attorney is just a phone call or Zoom conference away, these things cannot substitute for a personal visit. Additionally, your lawyer’s office should be accessible for people who use canes or wheelchairs.
- Workload: If you go to a new restaurant and there are few cars in the parking lot, that’s a bad sign. There is usually a reason few customers are there. On the flip side, if you go to a new restaurant and there is a two-hour wait for a table, that’s also a bad sign. No one’s chicken fried steak is that good. So, your attorney should be busy, but not so busy that s/he is likely to neglect your case or hand it off to a junior lawyer or paralegal.
The common denominator in all three of these areas is communication. Your lawyer must be able to talk to you and be able to give you good advice, so you can make the best possible choices for you and your family.
Compensation in a job injury claim usually includes money for lost wages, medical bills, and other economic losses. Some victims are eligible for additional compensation.
Construction accidents cause serious injuries, and it is not easy to obtain compensation for these injuries. For a confidential consultation with an experienced personal injury attorney in Houston, contact Williams Hart & Boundas today. Home, virtual, after-hours, and hospital visits are available.