Crane Accidents

Almost 200 construction workers are killed in approximately 400 fatal crane accidents throughout the country each year. There are two types of cranes: overhead cranes and mobile cranes. Overhead cranes are large, free-standing structures that are comprised of one tall support beam and a horizontal beam connected to the support beam that houses a control booth and a hook-and-line mechanism. Overhead cranes are stationary and are usually installed at large-scale construction sites that involve erecting a new building. Mobile cranes, on the other hand, are miniature cranes mounted on top of trucks that are easily transportable for smaller construction jobs. The vast majority of individuals injured by crane accidents are workers employed at the construction site, including laborers, electricians, and welders. In addition, crane operators are also commonly killed. While cranes are used in a mix of public government projects and private projects, the majority of fatalities and injuries occur in the private construction industry. California consistently ranks as the third most dangerous state in the U.S. for construction accidents.

Common Causes of Crane Accidents

Crane accidents are commonly caused by:

  • Collisions with construction equipment or vehicles
  • Falling debris and equipment
  • Trapped between the crane and other equipment
  • Run over by the crane
  • Struck by objects
  • Falls from the crane structure
  • Electrocution
  • Crane tips over
  • Driver error

Federal and State Safety Regulations

The construction industry is one of the more dangerous fields of work. On any given day, 125,000 cranes are in operation with 250,000 workers sharing operator responsibilities. Hundreds of accidents occur each year due to negligence. In response to the increase of injuries and fatalities on construction work sites, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) requires frequent inspection of the cranes, training for all operators, safety equipment and protocol, and proper supervision of employees. A large number of crane accidents are caused by negligence and are preventable. OSHA, a federal regulatory agency, along with the state of California, implemented a variety of safety regulations concerning operation and use of cranes at work sites. Some of these regulations require:

  • Operating cranes below power lines if the electricity has not been shut off.
  • Providing education and training courses to new operators.
  • Having emergency response and safety protocol in place to follow in the event of an accident.

Construction Worksite Negligence

According to the U.S. Department of Labor Statistics, there are approximately 6.4 million workers in the construction industry. 400 crane accidents seem fairly miniscule compared to the overall size of the industry. While construction companies may call these unfortunate events ‘freak accidents’ in order to encourage workers to undertake the inherent risks associated with working with cranes,  ‘freak accident’ connotes an accident that occurs suddenly, unpredictably, and without rhyme or reason. Crane accidents are not freak accidents. They are most often caused by negligence.  By its very nature, negligence is preventable and causes foreseeable harm.

Construction companies owe a duty of care to construction workers to keep the work site free of dangerous conditions and defects. If the construction company is aware of or should have known about a dangerous condition or defect, the company can be liable for any accidents caused by the dangerous condition. Dangerous conditions include malfunctioning cranes, poorly constructed cranes, and improperly secured equipment. If the accident causes foreseeable harm, the construction company may be responsible for paying personal injury damages to the victim.

Damages

Crane accident compensation may include:

  • Lost past and future wages
  • Medical expenses
  • Pain and suffering
  • Loss of quality of life

I’m Ed Smith, a Sacramento Construction Accident attorney  with the primary accident information site on the web, www.AutoAccident.com.

If you or a loved one has suffered an injury in a crane or construction accident  caused by the negligence of another, call me now at (916) 921-6400. If you are outside the Sacramento area, you can call at(800) 404-5400 for free, friendly advice.

See our Reviews on YelpAvvo and Google Plus. We are members of Million Dollar Advocates Forum (Include link at  http://www.milliondollaradvocates.com/)

Client Reviews
  • Me and my wife; had a car accident. We were amazed how easy, professional, friendly attorney Ed Smith is along with his staff. Everybody is amazing. Thank you so much, we are very impressed!
    Sincerely, Alex & Dinah M. ★★★★★
  • Ed Smith and his office team took on a difficult personal injury case on my behalf and for the passenger in my car. Ed is a top- notch attorney. His staff couldn't have been more helpful and kind. No need to look elsewhere. I give Ed Smith my highest recommendation. Beverly ★★★★★
  • Ed and Robert have been taking great care of my husband and I for the past 5+ years. They are always there when you have a problem and a quick resolution! Even when the issues have nothing to do with them. They are willing to help ease the pain off your shoulders. They are as good as it gets! Thank you again for everything. Annie T. ★★★★★
  • Very professional. Great team, staff and service all around. Mr Smith was very honest, straight forward with his advice. He gives the word "attorney" an honest reputation. I will seek his council anytime, and would recommend him at the drop of a dime. Jeremy M. ★★★★★
  • I would highly recommend Ed Smith to any friends or family in need of a personal injury attorney. Ed, and his staff, are very caring on top of being very experienced in this field. The staff always keeps you informed of the status of your case and they are always easy to reach by phone. Shannon D. ★★★★★
  • Edward Smith law offices provide competent, thorough, and personable help for victims of personal injury. When you first meet the staff you know you contacted the right office. This law office treats clients like people. I recommend this office to anyone seeking representation regarding personal injury. David M. ★★★★★