Ladder Injuries on Construction Sites and Other Workplaces
Ladders are used often and in various jobs, particularly in the construction industry. Yet ladder injuries are also common and can be serious. How do ladder injuries happen, and what can you do to seek compensation? Consider the following information from our West Palm Beach workers’ compensation attorneys.
How Do Ladder Injuries Happen on the Job?
Ladder injuries can happen in many different ways on construction sites and in other workplaces, from misusing a ladder to using the wrong ladder for the job to using a ladder that is broken. The following are common examples of ladder injuries according to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OHSA):
- Fall from a ladder that results in a traumatic brain injury (TBI), bone fracture, or other serious injury;
- Electrocution while using a ladder;
- Struck-by injury that occurs when a heavy object falls from a ladder.
Types of Ladders Used in Workplaces
What kinds of ladders are there? In short, a wide variety of ladders exists, so it is critical to use the appropriate ladder for the job. The following are common types of ladders and their uses:
- Straight ladders, or single ladders, which are non-self supporting, must have ground support, must have an anchor at the top, and are commonly used for construction and roofing;
- Extension ladders, which are like straight ladders but can be adjusted in height;
- Platform ladders, which are self-supporting and have a top platform, and require ground support;
- Trestle ladders, or double-front ladders, which are self-support, require ground level support, and uniquely can support two people at the same time; and
- Stepladders, which are self-supporting, v-shaped ladders that require ground support, are typically short, and are typically used for small projects like interior decorating or landscaping.
Is My Employer Covered?
In order to obtain workers’ compensation benefits, your employer will need to be covered. Most employers in Florida are required to have coverage. If you work for an employer in the construction industry, then the employer is required to have workers’ compensation coverage with even one employee. Otherwise, most other employers in non-construction industries are required to have workers’ compensation coverage if they have four or more employees.
Taking Steps for Your Claim
If your employer is covered, or is required to have coverage, you may be able to obtain benefits after your workplace injury. To seek benefits, Florida law requires any injured employee to report the injury to their employer within 30 days from the date the injury occurred (but ideally as soon as possible). It is also necessary to obtain ongoing medical care from an approved provider. For any initial medical visit for an emergency, the provider does not have to be approved (i.e., you can go to the nearest emergency department).
Contact a West Palm Beach Workers’ Compensation Attorney
Ladders can be extremely dangerous. Whether you are regularly using ladders while working in the construction industry and suffered an injury, or you got hurt on the job while using a ladder for a minor task in the workplace, it may be possible to obtain wage-replacement benefits, medical care, and more through the Florida workers’ compensation system. One of the experienced West Palm Beach workers’ compensation lawyers at the Law Offices of David M. Benenfeld, P.A. can speak with you today about your workplace injury and can help you to seek the workers’ compensation benefits you need.