Fall protection in general industry workplaces is required at elevations of four feet by OSHA.

Ladders and scaffolding must be properly erected and carefully overseen to help prevent deadly accidents. Property owners who fail in this responsibility may be held liable for resulting injuries.

What are the dangers of scaffolding and ladders on construction sites?

Falls, slips, and trips were the most frequent type of fatal event in the construction industry in 2019 and represented 37.9% of all fatalities, as reported by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). Falls from scaffolds or ladders can cause catastrophic or fatal injuries. Common injuries in ladder and scaffolding fall accidents include:

  • Spinal cord injury leading to paralysis
  • Traumatic brain injury
  • Internal organ damage
  • Fractured bones
  • Severe lacerations

What are the contributing factors in falls from scaffolds?

Scaffolds are temporary elevated platforms used to support workers, materials, and tools. Factors that can contribute to fall from scaffold accidents include:

  • Improper erection and dismantling procedures
  • Improper maintenance
  • Incorrect mounting or dismounting methods
  • Overloading
  • Missing ladder gates and access openings
  • Absence of guardrails
  • Failure of scaffold components
  • Absence of or defective personal protective equipment (PPE)

What causes falls from ladders on construction sites?

Falls from ladders may result from misuse of the ladder, such as using an improper lean angle with an extension ladder or failing to lock the spreaders on a step ladder. However, many ladder falls are caused by ladder design or manufacturing defects, such as:

  • Excess flexibility, causing ladder instability
  • Poorly designed rung locks
  • Flaws in the material of the ladder
  • Improperly seated rivets
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What compensation is available after a serious scaffolding or ladder fall?

If you have been seriously injured in a fall from a scaffold or ladder on a construction site, you may have more than one source of compensation.

Workers’ compensation

For an injury that occurred on the job, you should be entitled to workers’ compensation benefits. Workers’ comp will pay for your medical expenses related to the workplace injury. It will also replace a portion of the wages you lose while you are recovering from your injuries.

Premises liability claim

If property owner negligence contributed to your accident and injuries, you may have a claim against the landowner. In addition to compensation for your financial losses, you may be able to recover non-economic damages such as pain and suffering, emotional trauma, and loss of enjoyment of life.

Third-party claim

You may have a claim against another third party such as a subcontractor or an equipment manufacturer if that party’s negligence contributed to your injuries.

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How can you recover compensation for scaffolding or ladder fall injuries in San Jose?

If you have been seriously injured in a fall from a ladder or scaffold, the first step is to get medical treatment for your injuries. As soon as you are able, contact an experienced San Jose premises liability attorney. We will investigate your accident to determine fault and liability and pursue all available forms of compensation. 

The Swanson Law Group: We fight for justice for injured construction workers

We’re different from other law firms. Some personal injury lawyers have no idea of the true value of their clients’ injuries, and they encourage them to accept whatever settlement the insurance company offers. Some attorneys are good in front of a jury, but they don’t understand what it takes to help the client get from accident date to trial date. At The Swanson Law Group, we have mastery over what is needed to help our clients recover from their injuries, we know the value of the loss, and we are happy to make insurance companies pay at trial.

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