According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, approximately 271 workers died in trenching or excavation cave-ins from 2000-2006. Later, researchers from the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health conducted a review of national statistical databases, and discovered that an average of approximately 54 excavation-related fatalities occurred per year between 1992 and 2000. These statistics don’t even begin to cover the reported and non-reported non-fatal injuries that occur from construction accidents each year.
Although the Occupational Safety & Health Administration (OSHA) provides safety guidelines for excavation and trenching (including the installation of a protective system for trenches more than 20 feet deep, the inclusion of ladders, steps, ramps, or other means of egress in excavations more than 4 feet deep, testing for low oxygen and toxic gases, and the regular inspection of trenches before shifts and after severe weather events), individuals and/or companies may not always properly observe them on the job.
Injuries caused by excavation accidents can unfortunately lead to much more than just the apparent physical damage and distress. Workers who have been injured by excavation accidents on the job may be subject to a variety of legal challenges, difficulty maintaining a household due to lost wages from being out of work, eventual unemployment and loss of livelihood due to being completely unable to return to work, numerous frustrating insurance company dealings, and/or complications with the payment of medical bills and physical therapies for such serious excavation accident injuries as:
- Crushed or Broken Limbs
- Internal Injuries
- Traumatic Brain Injuries
- Back and Spinal Cord Injuries
- Concussions (if struck by equipment or materials)
- Disfigurement (sometimes permanent damage)
- Electrocution by Underground Power Lines
- …and more.
The importance of seeking a determined, experienced lawyer when dealing with the repercussions of a serious excavation accident injury cannot be understated. When facing all of the many legal, financial, and medical difficulties, a good lawyer is an irreplaceable legal resource for advice and navigation through such significant challenges. A lawyer can also professionally represent injured workers and/or their families in court and on paper when fighting legal resistance or seeking deserved appropriate compensation beyond the minimums of basic worker’s compensation benefits.
If you've been injured in a Florida excavation accident, contact the Law Offices of James O. Cunningham, P.A. today at 877-FL-INJURY (877-354-6587) for a free initial consultation.
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