Winter weather can pose many serious hazards on construction sites, and it is critical for employees to know their rights when it comes to a safe exterior workplace during the winter months. When winter conditions result in injuries on construction sites, construction workers may be eligible to seek multiple different forms of compensation depending upon the facts of the case. Workers’ compensation benefits will be likely, but it also may be possible to file a lawsuit against a negligent employer or a negligent third-party. Our experienced New York construction accident lawyers can explain in more detail.
Understanding Risks Posed by Winter Weather on Construction Sites
What kinds of hazards result from winter weather on construction sites? According to Occupational Health & Safetymagazine, the following are some of the most common injury risks on construction sites during the winter months:
● Exposure injuries caused by cold temperatures, such as chilblains, frostbite, or hypothermia;
● Slips and falls caused by icy or slick walkways that have not been adequately salted; and
● Vehicle accidents on construction sites when the roads or driving areas are icy, including crashes involving trucks, cranes, and other types of vehicles.
These hazards can result in serious and sometimes fatal injuries if precautions are not taken. Nearly all of the accidents arising out of these dangers are avoidable with planning and safety measures in place.
Who is Liable for Construction Site Accidents and Injuries in the Winter?
Regardless of fault or liability for a construction site accident that results from inclement weather or wintry conditions, construction workers typically can be eligible to seek workers’ compensation benefits. Since workers’ compensation is a no-fault system, injured construction workers do not need to prove that an employer or anybody else was negligent. A construction worker also does not need to worry if his or her own negligence played a role in causing the accident. Rather, the worker can simply seek benefits as long as other requirements are met.
Yet lawsuits also may be possible for construction site accidents and injuries resulting from dangerous winter conditions. UnderNew York Labor Law, construction site employers have a “general duty to protect [the] health and safety of employees,” which means providing “reasonable and adequate protection to the lives, health, and safety of all persons” employed on construction sites. If an employer fails to take precautions for dangerous conditions produced by snow, ice, or cold temperatures, the employer may be liable for damages under New York Labor Law.
Car accidents are also common in the winter months. If a construction site accident occurs on a road or highway and another motorist is to blame, the construction worker may be eligible to file a third-party personal injury lawsuit against that at-fault motorist.
Contact a Construction Accident Attorney in New York
If you have questions about seeking compensation for a construction accident injury that occurred in winter conditions, you should get in touch with one of our experienced New York construction accident attorneys as soon as possible. We can evaluate your claim and discuss your options for filing a lawsuit.Contact Leitner Varughese, PLLC for more information.