Construction Site Accident: Injury from a Crane
A crane is a vital tool for construction. From allowing workers to reach high heights to complete construction tasks to allowing heavy items to be lifted, a crane is a versatile and useful tool. It can also be a dangerous or deadly tool. If you fall from a crane, something falls on your from a crane, you are run over by a crane, or you are otherwise injured by a crane, a lot of things can go wrong. Worse, when a crane accident does occur, you may be seriously hurt and face high medical bills or be unable to continue to work. If you are working on a construction site and you are injured by a crane accident, you thus need to understand what your legal rights are and what you can do.
Crane Accident Recovery
If a crane accident occurs when you are on the job, you cannot generally sue your employer. This might make you upset, since you probably are familiar with the idea of personal injury lawsuits and with people recovering damages for accidents through filing one of these civil suits. However, rest assured, there are protections in place. The reason you cannot sue your employer is because all 50 states in the US have passed legislation instituting an exclusive remedy system called the workers compensation system.
Under the workers comp system:
- Workers can recovery monetary compensation for any work related accident or injury that arises from their jobs. Negligence isn't a factor and need not be proven to recover damages. In other words, if you got hurt by a crane accident at work or while working, then it doesn't matter if your employer was careful or negligent- they must pay for your damages. This is true unless you did something very wrong to cause the injury, like showing up drunk to work while using the crane.
- The recovery you can collect is generally set by state law. It includes payment for medical bills. After you've missed a few days of work (the exact number varies by state), you can also collect money for lost wage. If you've been made permanently disabled, money is available for that too. There are even death benefits available for family members of a worker who is killed at work.
After a crane accident, it is imperative you consult with an experienced attorney as soon as possible. Your lawyer can help you to understand how you can collect damages and what you are likely to recover, and can also assist you with the process of filing a workers comp claim.