Failure to Provide Fall Protection on the Job
Construction sites requiring employees to work at a certain height or otherwise elevated from the ground must follow OSHA safety guidelines. These guidelines protect workers from falls and workplace accidents, which can cause major injuries or even death. Failure to provide fall protection on the job is a serious OSHA safety violation and should be reported.
If you or a loved one has been injured or killed due to falling at a construction job and proper fall protection was not available and/or used, you should seek legal advice from an attorney on your claim.
OSHA Safety Guidelines on Fall Protection
OSHA has clear guidelines on which fall protection must be provided for construction workers. The regulations on fall protection are the most cited and considered some of the most important, as falls can easily lead to death. General guidelines include:
- Walking and working surfaces must have the structural strength and integrity to hold workers.
- Only when surfaces have been deemed adequately safe may employees work or walk upon them.
- Both horizontal and vertical surfaces six feet or more above ground level with an unprotected side must be protected from falling hazards.
- Guardrail or personal fall arrest systems must be used to protect workers in a hoist area with a fall of six feet or more.
Causes of Unprotected Falls
When a construction worker falls on the job and is injured, it is often the result of:
- Lack of proper railings
- No use of personal fall arrest system
- No safety net
- Lack of safety cages
- Incorrect equipment or use of equipment
- Faulty equipment, such as scaffolding
- Unprotected openings
There are other causes of unprotected falls, but these are the most common and are due to employer negligence in failing to provide a safe work environment. These violations should be reported to OSHA, and a worker injured in an unprotected fall should talk to an attorney to protect their rights.
The Dangers of Failure to Provide Fall Protection
The constant threat of falling is the main reason it is so important to have fall protection on construction sites involving heights, hoists, and scaffolds. Even short falls can result in serious injuries, which is why failure to provide fall protection is a serious violation of OSHA rules. Common injuries related to falls are:
- Bone breaks or fractures
- Muscle strains or sprains
- Head and spine injuries
No construction employee should lose his or her life in an unprotected fall. Fall protection and worksite safety are rights that are enforced by OSHA and the law. Any injuries incurred due to a lack of protection or an unsafe workplace are eligible for compensation. Discuss your claim with a knowledgeable construction injury attorney at Richard J. Plezia & Associates.
Assistance from a Houston Accident Lawyer
Anytime a construction worker is injured on the job, Richard J. Plezia & Associates is here to help. With years of experience in construction injury claims, we dedicate ourselves to our clients, their safety, and their rights.
Call 1-800-428-1853 to schedule a consultation with a Houston work accident attorney who knows OSHA safety guidelines and can advise you on your claim or read more about common work accident questions.