OSHA Cites Florida Contractor After Fatal Accident
A construction site can be an incredibly dangerous place for workers and passersby alike. In fact, according to the U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), construction employees represent 20% of all worker fatalities in the United States. For this reason, OSHA takes great care in inspecting construction sites and penalizing any companies that subject their workers to occupational risk and hazards.
In 2016, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that OSHA’s “Fatal Four” were responsible for nearly 64% of all fatalities in the construction industry:
- Falls (39%)
- Struck by an object (9%)
- Electrocutions (8%)
- Caught-in/between (7%)
Sadly, these numbers haven’t improved in the last three years. As of May 2019, at least three Florida companies – Crown Roofing LLC, PCL Construction Services, and Stettinius Construction Inc. – have been issued fines for encouraging employees to work without life-saving fall protection equipment.
The Case of Stettinius Construction Inc.
On May 7, 2019, OSHA cited Stettinius Construction Inc. for “exposing employees to safety hazards after a worker suffered a fatal fall at a worksite in Naples, Florida.” The company’s remodeling contractor is currently facing $26,142 in proposed penalties for putting his workers in danger and violating the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970.
The contractor has been cited for the following violations:
- Failing to provide guardrail systems, safety net systems, or personal fall arrest systems
- Exposing employees to fall hazards due to a lack of fall protection equipment
- Failing to create a training program that teaches workers how to recognize and mitigate fall hazards
- Allowing employees to use portable ladders that aren’t tall enough to reach landings
Falls are a leading cause of death in the construction industry. Per OSHA regulations, employers are required to provide fall protection equipment for any employees working at least six feet above ground-floor level. Unfortunately, it’s not unusual for supervisors and contractors to cut corners in the name of profit and production. But when a serious accident occurs, it’s always a hardworking employee who suffers the cost of their employer’s negligence and greed.
A fall accident can result in the following injuries and more:
- Traumatic brain injury (TBI)
- Broken bones
- Neck injuries
- Spinal cord injuries
- Nerve damage
Fall accident survivors often sustain debilitating and life-altering injuries that necessitate expensive medical procedures, rehabilitation programs, and professional care services. However, when a construction worker is injured during an occupational incident, their pursuit of financial reimbursement is often affected by Florida’s workers’ compensation laws. If you’re facing financial hardships after being injured in a construction site accident, it’s time to explore your legal options with an experienced personal injury attorney.
At The Pittman Firm, P.A., we can help you navigate the laws, regulations, and complex liability issues commonly associated with worksite accidents. While most occupational injuries fall under the state’s workers’ compensation program, you may be able to pursue monetary damages in civil court if your injuries are a direct consequence of your employer’s negligence.
For example, you can hold your employer liable for the following acts of carelessness:
- Failing to issue adequate equipment
- Failing to provide fall equipment
- Failing to maintain or repair equipment and machinery
- Failing to complete thorough site inspections
- Failing to comply with OSHA’s standards and regulations
Of course, there are also scenarios where a worker may be able to secure compensation through a third-party liability lawsuit. For this reason and more, it’s critical that you discuss your case with a knowledgeable legal representative before making any serious decisions.
Our legal team can investigate your case, identify the negligent parties, and calculate your existing and projected injury-related expenses. With this information, we can develop an aggressive litigation strategy that holds the at-fault parties responsible for your injuries and financial losses.
A successful lawsuit can yield the following compensatory damages:
- Existing and projected medical expenses
- Rehabilitation costs
- Professional care fees
- Lost income
- Loss of earning potential
- Pain and suffering
- Disability and disfigurement
If your situation doesn’t meet the eligibility requirements for a civil lawsuit, we can refer you to an excellent workers’ compensation attorney who can guide you through that challenging legal process.
Injured in a Fall Accident? Explore Your Legal Options Today
The Pittman Firm, P.A. has been representing the rights and interests of construction workers for over 30 years. If you require legal representation or guidance, constant our firm today. We can help you obtain a beneficial settlement or verdict that facilitates your physical and financial recovery.
We’re available 24/7 and provide our services on a contingency fee basis. Contact The Pittman Firm, P.A. at (850) 764-0383 to schedule a free consultation.