The hazards of a construction site can be clear, and cues like chain link fences and hard hats are a constant reminder of the dangers of a work accident. Yet while most construction workers are savvy about taking precautions to protect themselves, construction site accidents often occur when dangers lurk in areas that a worker is unaware of.
This recently made the news in San Francisco’s Financial District, where a crane that was replacing window-washing equipment at the famous Bank of America building was snapped by gust of wind. Even more terrifying was the fact that it was transferring a container with more than five tons of mechanical equipment during the accident.
With the crane stalled, frighten commuters below scrambled out of the way or watched helplessly as the broken machinery hovered dangerously over traffic. After several hours, workers began the process of moving the container to safety.
Third Party Responsible for Accidents
Although the Bank of America accident had a happy ending, many similar incidents do not. Construction and industrial accidents can leave workers with to catastrophic injuries. In many cases, this could involve a lawsuit under the third party claim area of law.
A third-party injury extends significantly beyond workers compensation claims, because an injured party can bring a lawsuit against parties other than their employee. This may include:
- Property owners
- Tool or equipment manufacturers
- Rental Companies
- Mechanics for equipment used on a construction site
These third parties have obligations to protect the safety of a construction site. Contractors must make sure the site is realistically safe for workers by advising them of hazards or potential hazards, and hiring workers and managers who are competent to complete the job safely. If an under-qualified employees is hired, contractors may be financially liable for resulting injuries.
A property owner may also be liable if they are aware of a dangerous condition that leads to an injury, but fail to warn workers. This obligation may not cover obviously hazardous conditions. In addition, manufacturers may have a third party liability for manufacturing defective equipment.
Workers’ Compensation Claim
These legal obligations were created to reduce the possibility associated with a dangerous occupation. Even with these safety measures, workers may still become injured at work when one of these duties is neglected. If you are injured, contact an experienced construction accident attorney to ensure that your rights are protected.
If you have an occupational disease or workers’ compensation claim, the third party claim attorneys of Emery Reddy can help you negotiate with administrators at Washington L&I. We also offer experienced legal representation to workers who face a denied L&I claim or requirements to complete an Independent Medical Examination. The Seattle third party attorneys at Emery Reddy are available to speak with you today; call us for a free consultation.