NJ Injury Law Firm Handles Cases for Fall Injuries / Ladder Accidents / Work Injury Cases
In the United States, ladder safety violations are responsible for approximately 100,000 injures, and approximately 300 deaths each year. These fall injuries occur at home or in the work place and usually result in serious personal injuries. Causes of ladder accidents range from defective products, misuse, or breach of safety practices and/or safety training. If you were injured by a ladder fall, or death of a loved one occurred as a result of a ladder fall, you may be entitled to compensation for your medical expenses, loss of work, and pain and suffering due to wrongful death. The NJ personal injuries lawyers at the Clark Law Firm understand the intricacies of these types of cases, and will work hard to ensure that the responsible parties are held accountable for your fall accident.
Ladder Types and Causes of Ladder Accidents
Ladder types vary greatly in their design, construction, weight limitations, and applications. Sometimes the ladders provided to workers are inadequate for the job at hand and serious injuries or death occur as a result. These types of ladders include something as simple as a step ladder, to extension ladders and roofing ladders, as well as more sophisticated ladders such as rolling ladders or permanently affixed ladders.
Several factors may contribute to falls from ladders. The ladder itself may be defective or faulty which would be grounds for a product liability claim. The operator of the ladder may not have been trained properly on how to use the ladder and/or the appropriate OSHA (Occupational Safety & Health Administration) safety regulations may not have been followed. Below is sample list of causes of ladder accidents:
- Ladder tipping over while in use
- Ladder slipping while in use
- Ladder collapsing during use
- Loose / compromised ladder rung(s)
- Ladder has inadequate traction either on the rungs or the footing
- Ladder was improperly positioned
- Improper or inadequate footing surface
- Ladder comes in contact with electrical wiring
Some of the causes listed above may not only cause the users to fall, but may also catapult them from the ladder. Workers have been known to accidentally catapult from a ladder and hit a surface or passing vehicle resulting in serious injuries. Ladders can be weak from poor construction, they may be used past their useful life, or they may have been damaged during transport (many ladders are manufactured outside of the United States).
Ladder Accident | Fall Injuries
Ladder fall injuries occur when a user falls from a ladder, is thrown from a ladder, or is electrocuted while using a ladder. Some of the most common ladder accident injures are below:
- Fractured bones
- Back and neck injuries
- Spinal Cord injuries
- Shoulder injuries
- Head / Brain injuries
- Death / Wrongful Death
Ladder Accident Liability
Ladder accidents can also be caused by misuse or improper use. The use of ladder must be taken seriously and safety education and precautions must be taken. Employers are responsible to ensure that their employees are utilizing the proper ladder for the job (e.g., the proper size, the proper weight limitations). Employers have the obligation and responsibility to provide a safe work environment, including providing training and ensuring that OSHA safety regulations are followed. Employers are also responsible for supervising or inspecting work sites so that any potential safety risks are identified.
If employers fail to comply with these regulations, they can be held liable for ladder fall injuries. Ladder accident claims can be complicated and complex. In addition to obtaining and documenting medical treatment for your injuries, it is important to document your working conditions and the ladder that you were utilizing at the time of the accident with photos, and if possible, written witness statements. Many factors play a part in determining if another party is responsible for your injuries, and if so, which party or parties. This includes but is not limited to labor laws, who you were employed by, whose property you were on, who or what caused the accident, who provided the ladder you were working on, and if OSHA safety regulations were followed. If the ladder was faulty, the manufacturer and distributor may be held responsible under product liability law.
Call Our Injuries Lawyers at the Clark Law Firm, P.C. to Pursue Your Ladder Accident Safety Violation Case
If you have been injured by a ladder accident due to another party’s negligence, it is important that the responsible parties be held accountable. Many ladder injuries happened because contractors ignore work safety rules to maximize profits at the expense of the working public. They should be held accountable in Court or they will continue ignoring those rules. By awarding just compensation, the public is made more safe. Construction jobs, or even home repairs requiring the use of a ladder, can be dangerous, and as such, product defects, negligence, or carelessness cannot be tolerated. Your fall injuries may be moderate to severe, or possibly a loved one was killed. Our NJ injuries lawyers at the Clark Law Firm, P.C., will review the circumstances surrounding your ladder accident and will advise you of your options regarding a personal injury case. The personal injury lawyers at the Clark Law Firm, P.C., can work on a contingency basis – meaning they will not collect legal fees until you receive compensation from your case. Call us today to ensure your legal rights are protected.
Ladder Safety Tips to Prevent Ladder Fall Injuries
Following is a list of ladder safety precautions offered by the United States Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) to help prevent ladder fall injures:
“Make sure the weight your ladder is supporting does not exceed its maximum load rating (user plus materials). There should only be one person on the ladder at one time.
Use a ladder that is the proper length for the job. Proper length is a minimum of 3 feet extending over the roofline or working surface. The three top rungs of a straight, single or extension ladder should not be stood on.
Straight, single or extension ladders should be set up at about a 75-degree angle.
All metal ladders should have slip-resistant feet.
Metal ladders will conduct electricity. Use a wooden or fiberglass ladder in the vicinity of power lines or electrical equipment. Do not let a ladder made from any material contact live electric wires.
Be sure all locks on extension ladders are properly engaged.
The ground under the ladder should be level and firm. Large flat wooden boards braced under the ladder can level a ladder on uneven ground or soft ground. A good practice is to have a helper hold the bottom of the ladder.
Do not place a ladder in front of a door that is not locked, blocked or guarded.
Keep your body centered between the rails of the ladder at all times. Do not lean too far to the side while working.
Do not use a ladder for any purpose other than that for which it was intended.
Do not step on the top step, bucket shelf or attempt to climb or stand on the rear section of a stepladder.
Never leave a raised ladder unattended.
- Follow use instruction labels on ladders.” *