Construction sites are dangerous places.
In general, construction workers are at high risk for on-the-job accidents. Every single day, they are at risk for being struck by moving objects and equipment, exposed to inclement weather, slipping and falling, and fatigue. Injuries can keep them away from work, create medical expenses, and add concerns about providing for their family.
As an attorney who represents Chicagoland clients in Workers’ Compensation claims, I fight for victims every day to gain the benefits that they deserve. With the risks posed by construction accidents, I want to offer some suggestions that will reduce the likelihood that you will be injured at a construction work site.
Wear the ‘Right’ Gear. It’s not just a helmet to protect your head. It’s eyewear, harnesses when working on rooftops and scaffolding, and reflective clothing for high-visibility.
Wear the ‘Right’ Shoes. Good footing is critical and not all footwear and work boots are created equal. Shoes should have:
• Gripping soles. You need non-slip grip for traction on treacherous terrain.
• Composite toe for protection from impact. Tools and equipment slip and your feet are a prime targets. Foot injuries can keep you away from work for extended periods.
Protect Your Head. Proper headwear fends off cold and wet conditions. However, be careful of headwear that limits your ability to hear and see. In particular, hoodies – while protecting you from wind and cold – can seriously limit your ability to see dangerous threats and conditions.
Go Hands-free. Your hands and arms play a critical role in maintaining your balance and catching yourself in mid-fall. Keep them free! If you need to carry papers or work supplies, use a backpack to keep your arms free. Talking on a cell phone while working is asking for trouble.
Hydrate. Proper hydration is tied to alertness, avoiding fatigue, better concentration, and a host of other factors. Avoid energy drinks and carbonated sodas. Dehydration and fatigue slow response time and make you more susceptible to injury.
Safety Meeting. Attend that safety meeting at the start of every shift. They keep you aware of what everyone around you is doing and your role on the playing-field. They also keep you aware of the equipment being used that day.
What To Do If You’re Injured.
Construction accidents happen quickly and are always unexpected. If you are injured while on-the-job, I recommend a 5-step checklist to maximize success with your claim. I know the territory, the pitfalls, and the hurdles.
Step 1: Medical Care. Seek medical attention and treatment immediately. Be sure to get copies of medical records of your exam and treatment. Take photos of any cuts or bruises that may not be revealed on X-rays.
Step 2: Notify your employer. Notify your employer as soon as possible. Do not wait. In Illinois, you have only a short time to notify your employer of the injury.
Step 3: Document the situation. Accidents are scary. Details are easy to overlook. Write down what you remember happening as soon as possible. What was happening just prior to the accident? Equipment condition? Your location? Who came to help? Do not share these notes with anyone other than your attorney who will find these enormously helpful in fighting for you.
Step 4: Notify your union. If you’re a member of a union, make your steward aware of your injury. Your union can provide significant help.
Step 5: Retain an attorney. If you are in the Chicagoland area, contact a Chicago Workers Compensation lawyer who is knowledgeable and experienced with Workers Compensation cases. We help you navigate the claims process to ensure that you receive all the benefits you deserve.
We Help Victims.
The Attorneys at Friend, Levinson & Turner apply a disciplined approach to gain a comprehensive perspective of the facts, issues, and injuries experienced in work related injuries. Our knowledge, experience, insight, and advice are invaluable. We make the legal process as stress-free as possible.
On-the-job injuries are complex. Insurance companies rely on professional adjusters to negotiate. In order to deal with these professionals, you need a highly-trained and skilled attorney to protect your rights.
We know your rights and the applicable laws. We are your advocates. We are experts at negotiating with powerful insurance companies. Experience counts.
We focus on recovering the compensation you deserve while you focus on healing and recovery.
The attorneys at Friend, Levinson & Turner Law make the legal process as stress-free as possible. We focus on recovering compensation for you – while you concentrate on your physical and emotional recovery.
If you or a loved one is injured at work, please call my office at 312-346-8465 or contact us using the form below.