San Antonio Construction Accident Lawyers
If workers are injured on the job, they have the right to sue their employers for compensation. With the aid of San Antonio construction injury lawyers, they can get multiple compensation benefits to help them recover from their injuries without financial stress.
Working at a construction site is one of the most dangerous jobs in the world. According to the U.S. Department of Labor’s statistics, 20% of fatal workplace accidents occur on construction sites, mainly due to falls, collapsing structures, electrocution and getting run over.
A construction site is full of hazards. Here you’ll find cranes, power saws, excavators, heavy machinery, improvised electrical installations, elevators, hoists, scaffolding and more. Often workers must perform highly specialized technical tasks at high heights. Within such a risky environment, any small mistake can cause a tragedy.
In order to prevent accidents and ensure safe work environments, the government-run Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) requires construction companies to comply with extensive safety measures.
These measures include constantly training workers on using all tools and machines that their work requires, ensuring frequent and proper maintenance of all equipment (such as vehicles, forklifts and elevators), and hanging clear signage that clearly indicates the specific hazards in each area of the site. (Often these signs must meet additional requirements as well, such as being written in both Spanish and English.)
Unfortunately, companies that are interested in protecting their investors’ profits fail to comply with some of these rules to save money. Ultimately, this makes them legally responsible for any accident that may occur at the construction they’re in charge of.
When a worker is injured, companies are protected by insurance providers that seek to minimize the victims’ injuries and pay them as little as possible. To succeed at this, they use abusive strategies, such as taking advantage of victims’ state of shock to make them sign documents that leave them unprotected or treat them with medical teams that work on their behalf.
That’s why if you or a loved one has suffered a construction accident, you should be advised by a legal team experienced in this type of case, such as George Salinas Injury Lawyers – the most recommended law firm in San Antonio!
Call us at 210-225-0909 or by filling out this form. (We speak Spanish, too!) We offer a free consultation to evaluate your situation and discuss possible legal paths.
You’re not alone. If you were injured due to someone else’s fault while working, you have the right to be financially compensated. Our San Antonio construction injury lawyers will fight to get you justice, regardless of your immigration status.
Common injury cases handled by a construction injury lawyer at San Antonio
Construction involves dozens (sometimes hundreds) of workers, multiple machines and heavy, sharp, toxic and flammable materials. Many of the tasks that need to be performed require technical expertise, such as operating an excavator or demolishing structures. They also involve a high degree of risk (such as installing a window several feet in the air while suspended by ropes).
In order to ensure the safety of everyone involved in such a hazardous work environment, construction companies must strictly follow all protocols. Any failure in safety measures, no matter how minor, can lead to serious, catastrophic or even fatal accidents.
For example, something as simple as posting a visible sign alerting workers not to walk through an area where concrete beams are being handled at high heights can make all the difference in preventing a tragedy. Often the lack of such signage (which should be visible and written in the preferred language of the staff) has resulted in workers being crushed to death by falling heavy materials.
Considering that most construction accidents are preventable, it’s important that everyone involved in a construction site knows why they happen. The clearer the causes are, the easier it is to prevent accidents from happening in the first place.
Here are the most common injury cases that a San Antonio construction injury lawyer handles.
Performing various activities at high heights is a common daily task for construction workers. For this, workers rely on using safe equipment and facilities. Any detail can cause a slip or fall, such as a wet surface, a poorly placed scaffolding, loose handrails or improperly assembled ladders.
However, it’s not just imperfect installations that can cause slips and falls. They can also happen due to lack of equipment training, confusing instructions from the supervisor or a reckless attitude on the part of a co-worker. These accidents sometimes result in minor injuries, such as sprains or strains, but can be fatal if they occur at high heights, which happens frequently for window cleaners or roofers.
Power tool accidents
Power tools are very useful in construction because they support high-force tasks. Examples of these tools include chainsaws, nail guns, drills, jaw crushers, air hoses or pressure pumps. Power tools are typically used by individuals. Each worker must have the precise knowledge on how to use the equipment and master all its features.
For this reason, it’s the company’s obligation to train workers. An employer can’t force workers to use equipment that they’re not trained on. If this happens, the employer would be considered negligent and liable for any accident that may occur.
Heavy machinery accidents
Many types of heavy machinery are involved in construction projects, such as excavators, backhoes, dredgers, motor graders, skid steers, spreaders, pavers, compactors, motor graders, water tankers, dump trucks, tractors, cranes, bulldozers and loaders.
Their size and features (such as tools with great destructive power) make them sources of multiple dangers. Any error in their operation or maintenance can cause serious accidents. That’s why companies must ensure that all those involved in the handling of machinery are trained to carry out their assigned work.
Struck by falling objects or materials
Activity at construction sites is non-stop. At all times, someone is handling tools and machinery in different areas. When this happens at high heights, any falling object can cause serious damage. A simple hammer falling several feet can fracture a skull. That’s why the use of safety hard hats at construction sites is strictly obligatory for anyone at the construction site.
However, when a cement block or concrete beam falls, a hard hat won’t prevent the worker from being crushed or suffering a catastrophic or fatal injury. There’s also a risk of a person being struck by materials being transported by some type of heavy machinery. To avoid this, it’s necessary for areas where these types of vehicles are operating to be widely signposted.
All construction sites require electrical installations to connect/disconnect machinery, provide power to different equipment, and illuminate areas at night and in confined spaces where workers sometimes have to work, such as tunnels. The danger of electrical installations in construction is that they may be improvised. They must be assembled quickly and are sometimes incomplete or faulty.
An accident involving electrical installations at construction sites can cause a variety of injuries, from minor burns to fires involving multiple victims. These accidents can result in serious injuries such as blindness or death by electrocution.
Motor vehicle accidents
One of the most frequent construction jobs involves roadways, whether building new ones, adding lanes to existing ones, or raising roads or bridges. In these situations, workers face the danger of being run over by vehicles traveling nearby, in addition to other risks (as road construction is often done with traffic in other lanes).
Construction areas often generate traffic and some drivers may be reckless or distracted, leading to construction workers getting hit. To avoid these accidents, Texas laws double the fines for drivers who violate regulations and drive near construction workers.
For construction companies, safety measures may include extensive signage several meters in advance indicating the presence of a construction site, as well as equipping workers with reflective vests when working at night.
Construction workers are forced to face exhausting workdays, often outdoors in hot climates with heavy clothing. All these elements can cause a disorder known as heat stroke, which happens when body temperature increases due to prolonged exposure to hot conditions, in addition to great physical exertion.
Heat stroke can cause injuries to the brain, heart and kidneys. The severity of these injuries increases if victims don’t receive medical attention in time. To prevent heat stroke, construction companies should implement safety protocols, such as ensuring continuous breaks in ventilated and shaded areas, as well as providing permanent access to drinking water. Workers should also be trained on how to help a co-worker suffering from heat stroke.
Common types of injuries caused by construction accidents
Due to the numerous hazards at construction sites, injuries that occur during workplace accidents vary. Among the most frequent types of injuries caused by construction accidents include:
- Brain injuries. These range from mild contusions to traumatic brain injuries (also known as TBIs).
- Spinal cord injuries. Mild injuries include sprained vertebrae, while severe injuries involve any that damage the spinal cord and cause catastrophic injuries (i.e. those that radically transform your life). Some different types of paralysis include: paraplegia (paralysis below the waist), quadriplegia (paralysis below the neck), hemiplegia (paralysis of the limbs on one side) or monoplegia (paralysis of only one area of the body).
- Fractured ribs and broken bones.
- Amputations (loss of limb).
- Asphyxiation. This can occur when a worker in a confined space becomes trapped and his coworkers don’t know it.
- Burns. There are different degrees of severity (mild ones only damage the external part of the skin, whereas severe ones reach the bone and can be life-threatening).
- Injuries involving the ankles, shoulder, thorax, abdomen, thigh and neck (whiplash).
- Wrongful death. Unfortunately, some construction accidents end in tragedy. When a construction worker dies, their immediate family members are entitled to compensation to grieve without financial worries.
Why is it so important to hire a construction injury lawyer in San Antonio?
Almost all construction companies have their workers insured. In addition, sometimes workers themselves have medical insurance that in theory covers the reimbursement of their medical expenses. For this reason, why many people may wonder:
Why do I need to hire a construction injury lawyer?
Won’t hiring a legal team lose me money?
What can personal injury law firms do for me?
Here are the top three reasons why it’s so important to hire a construction injury lawyer:
Insurance companies defend the interests of their investors, not victims.
Insurance providers, even those for workers, always look after the interests of their investors, never those of victims. It’s likely, therefore, that insurers will try to pay as little as possible to victims. Often they do this through aggressive strategies, such as taking advantage of injured people’s state of shock to make them sign documents that dismiss the seriousness of their injuries or establish an insufficient indemnity that will leave them unprotected.
Instead, when a victim is defended by experienced construction injury lawyers (such as our experts at George Salinas Injury Lawyers), your best interests will always be defended and specialists in different areas will build a strong case to fight for the compensation that lets you rebuild your life.
Building a winning construction accident compensation case requires complex and specialized legal work.
In order to build a winning construction accident compensation case, it’s necessary to make a strong case that negligence existed. In other words, that the accident was someone else’s fault. To do this, you need to gather evidence that’s strong enough that an insurance company can’t dismiss the claim and, if it goes to court, that can convince a jury.
To achieve this, George Salinas’ expert legal team has specialists in different areas who gather the necessary evidence, such as tracking down videos of the accident, locating eyewitnesses and collecting their testimonies, and studying the accident scene with mechanical or construction experts to extract the necessary evidence (for example, that the accident was caused by a defective tool, machine or vehicle).
In addition, an experienced construction injury lawyer will advise you on your rights at all times and consult with you on an ongoing basis about the various options that arise during negotiations, so you can jointly make the best decision.
You don’t have to pay anything out-of-pocket when you hire a construction accident attorney from George Salinas Injury Lawyers.
Construction accident attorneys at George Salinas defend the rights of victims. That’s why we work with a payment method where our clients never have to pay us out-of-pocket.
In the legal field, it’s known as “contingency fees” and it works like this: We sign a contract that states that we’ll handle your case from start to finish using our resources. Only if we win your case, we’ll receive a small percentage of the final compensation you receive (as established in the contract).
How much money can I get if I win a construction accident compensation case in San Antonio?
The total amount won in a San Antonio construction accident compensation case is tied primarily to two factors:
- The severity of injuries
Compensation benefits provide for reimbursement of all medical bills (such as medicines, doctor’s fees, hospital and intensive care fees, as well as the equipment necessary to carry out rehabilitation), as well as future medical bills. In addition, they cover emotional and psychological injuries (such as anguish, depression or stress) that have affected the victim’s quality of life as a result of the accident.
- The time it takes to recover and return to work
In many serious construction accidents, victims lose the ability to work for a period of time or permanently. In these cases, the law allows victims to claim compensation of all lost wages if they’re no longer able to work (from the day of the accident until retirement). In case the worker died during the accident, close relatives are entitled to claim this compensation (including children, parents and spouses).
What steps should I take after a construction accident?
After a construction accident, it’s important to seek medical attention immediately and notify your supervisor. You should heed the instructions of the examining physician and check yourself into a hospital if recommended. Once you’ve been treated for your injuries, here are the next steps you should take:
- Immediately call a construction accident attorney at George Salinas Injury Lawyers at 210-225-0909.
- Don’t state that you feel fine. Keep in mind that after suffering an accident you will probably be in a state of shock and adrenaline inhibits the sensation of pain. Many injuries, especially those to internal organs, may take several hours or days to manifest themselves, too. If you claim to be fine and later discover that you’re injured, your initial statement will be used against you by the insurance company to dismiss your claim.
- Take videos and photographs of the accident scene and your injuries. For example, if you fell because of improperly placed scaffolding, record a video of that scaffolding. If your injuries don’t allow you to do so, ask a coworker to do this for you.
- Don’t talk to insurance company agents or sign any documents they give you.
- Set your social networks to private and don’t post anything related to the accident. Don’t add images, videos or any reflections. (Anything you post can be used against you. If you do post something, don’t delete it, as it may be considered destruction of evidence).
Contact our San Antonio construction injury lawyers
Were you or a loved one injured on the job? You’re entitled to receive multiple compensation benefits to help rebuild your life, regardless of your immigration status. Texas law protects you even if you’re undocumented.
At George Salinas Injury Lawyers, we specialize in winning cases like yours and guarantee the protection of your personal information. Call us at 210-225-0909 or by filling out this online form. We’re here for you every day of the year at any time – and we speak Spanish! Our San Antonio construction injury lawyers will fight to get you and your family justice.
During our free consultation at George Salinas, we’ll ask you about your case and review it in detail in order to recommend different options. We’ll listen to you every step of the way and advise you on the best legal path to get justice for your construction accident.
Many construction accidents could have been avoided. Sometimes workers themselves perceive unsafe conditions at their worksite, but don’t know how to report them properly. The first step is to inform the site supervisor or foreman.
However, if unsafe conditions persist, it’s possible to report them to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), which has several offices throughout Texas. Here’s the contact information for the office located in San Antonio:
Fountainhead Tower., Suite 605 8200 W. Interstate 10
San Antonio, TX 78230
If you’re unable to come to our offices because your construction accident injuries are keeping you bedridden, don’t worry. Our attorneys at George Salinas will visit you wherever you are. Or, if you prefer, we can schedule a videoconference to learn the details of your case and offer you different legal paths to seek justice for the injuries you’ve suffered.
The time it takes to settle a San Antonio construction accident case is closely tied to whether or not it goes to trial. At first, your attorneys will negotiate with the construction company’s insurance company. If during these negotiations a settlement is reached that is satisfactory to the victim, then the case can be resolved within a few weeks.
However, if during the negotiation a satisfactory agreement isn’t reached for the victim, it will be necessary to resolve the case in court, which may take longer as trials can sometimes take months or even years.
Texas law provides an average of two years for victims of a construction accident to file a claim for injury compensation. If this time period expires and victims don’t file a claim, they’ll lose the right to compensation.
Our recommendation is that you call George Salinas Injury Lawyers immediately to file a claim. Keep in mind that the more time that passes, the more difficult it will be to gather evidence and, therefore, the more complicated it will be to win your case.