Falls are the number one cause of construction worker fatalities every year.
A ladder is a vital tool for many workers in construction and repair industries. There are a variety of ladders depending on the job. No matter what type of ladder is used, it is very important for employers and workers to exercise great caution when using a ladder. Falls are the number one cause of construction worker fatalities every year. They account for 1 out of every 3 deaths.
Some other ladder fall injury statistics include the following:
- The United States Product Safety Commission reports that there are over 100,00 ladder injuries each year in the United States. 90,000 of these accidents result in individual seeking emergency room medical care
- The World Health Organization reports that in the United States there are 164,000 visits to the emergency room treated injuries ladders fall accidents and 300 deaths per year from ladder falls.
All Ladder Accidents are Preventable!
There are both state and federal laws that are designed to prevent ladder fall accidents from occurring. One example of a relevant federal law is that Occupational Safety and Health Administration specifies the proper height, rung-size, placement, and various other conditions that must be met when ladders are used in construction locations.
- Fixed ladders: Fall protection must be provided for employees climbing or working on fixed ladders above 24 feet.29 CFR 1926.1053(a)(19) states that fall protection must be provided whenever the length of climb on a fixed ladder equals or exceeds 24 feet. A fixed ladder is “a ladder that cannot be readily moved or carried because it is an integral part of a building or structure” (§1926.1050(b)). Also, even if the length of climb is less than 24 feet, under §1926.1053(a)(18), cages, wells, ladder safety devices, or self-retracting lifelines must be provided where the top of the fixed ladder is greater than 24 feet above lower levels.
- Portable ladders: Fall protection is not required for employees climbing or working on portable ladders. Neither the ladder standard (29 CFR 1926, subpart X) nor the fall protection standard (29 CFR 1926, subpart M) requires fall protection for workers while working on portable ladders.
- Inspection: All ladders should be in proper working function and simple visual inspection is all that is required before getting on. All the ladder rungs should be straight. The ladder should not have any slippery substances on it and should not be bent or cracked.
- Securing the Base: The base of the ladder should be properly secured to the ground before getting on. Always place the ladder on stable and level ground.
The following fatal ladder fall accidents occurred in Massachusetts in 2017 alone:
- In 2017, a Worcester electrician died after falling from a ladder;
- In 2017, a man died after falling nearly 20 feet off of a scaffolding at a construction project in Waltham.
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Experienced Massachusetts Workers’ Compensation Attorneys
Our Brockton workers’ compensation attorneys are able to secure the following benefits for injured workers and their families when workers sustain injuries for accidents that occur within the scope of the workers employment:
- Partial disability benefits,
- Temporary total disability benefits,
- Permanent and total disability benefits,
- Death benefits, and
- Scarring and disfigurement benefits.
Employees Injured on the Job Are Entitled by Law to Workers’ Comp Benefits
Employees that are injured on the job are entitled to workers’ compensation benefits under Massachusetts law. Almost every employer is required by law to carry worker compensation insurance in order protect against workplace accidents. The Massachusetts workers’ compensation law was designed to make sure that any worker who is unable to work for 5 or more days is eligible to receive necessary medical treatment and weekly compensation.
There are several different types of ladders that can result in accidents. The types of ladders include the following:
- Extension Ladders
- Folding Ladders
- Multipurpose Ladders
- Platform Ladders
- Step Ladders
- Step Stools
- Telescoping Ladders
Common Reasons for On-the-Job Ladder Accidents
There are several common causes of workplace ladder fall accidents, which include the following:
- Choosing the Wrong Ladder Type. A person must select a ladder that is fit for the job. When weight or height limits on a ladder are exceeded, serious accidents are known to occur.
- Incorrect Ladder Placement. Workers should never place a ladder in a position that could result in a fall.
- Not securing the ladder on a sturdy foundation. Employers should make sure ladders always have at least three points of contact with the ground.
- Using a Damaged or Worn Ladder. Employers should not provide their employees with ladders that are damaged in any way. There is a significant risk that damaged ladders will break and lead to fall accidents.
If you or a loved one is injured in a ladder fall accident, it is a wise idea to retain the assistance of the skilled Boston work injury lawyer. Do not hesitate to contact the Massachusetts Ladder Accident Attorneys at The Law Offices of Gerald J. Noonan today. Our group of Brockton workplace accident lawyers with over 35 years of legal experience. Our legal counsel has helped individuals who have been injured in a number of work site accidents including ladder fall accidents.
Massachusetts Ladder Fall Injury Firm Representing the residents of Plymouth County including Brockton, Plymouth, Bridgewater, Marshfield, Hingham, Duxbury, Wareham, Abington, Rockland, Whitman, Hanson, Middleborough; Norfolk County including Quincy, Stoughton, Dedham, Weymouth, Braintree, Avon, Holbrook, Randolph, Canton, Sharon, Brookline, Franklin; Bristol County including New Bedford, Fall River, Taunton, Attleboro, Mansfield, Easton, Raynham, Norton; Cape Cod, Falmouth, Barnstable and the Greater Boston area including Cambridge, Lynn, Revere, Everett, Lawrence, Dorchester, Roxbury and Somerville.