Responsibility for Construction Safety
Construction work is dangerous. There is no easier way to put it. Workers routinely spend time several stories off of the ground, work with heavy machinery and chemicals, and perform strenuous physical labor. As a result there is a high level of workplace injuries ranging from minor to major, not to mention the more than occasional death.
Contractors and subcontractors should know this, and should take full responsibility for implementing and enforcing safety procedures. If they don’t, they have no business being in business.
Effective safety management occurs when one party (either the contractor or sub-contractor) assumes the leadership role and establishes, enforces and monitors safety on the job site. When a worker clocks in, there should be no question as to who is in charge and what steps should be taken to comply with safety regulations.
What this means is that one person should take responsibility for knowing who is on his jobsite, and knows that everyone on his site has been hired by him either directly or indirectly. He should know exactly what work is being done on a daily basis and should be performing daily inspections to ensure that safety protocols are being followed.
The contractor should also be responsible enough to conduct at least basic safety training to all his employees. It isn’t enough to simply put a tool in someone’s hands and tell them to get to it. Safety training should be thorough enough that employees can instantly recognize when they are in needlessly dangerous situations and can take steps to rectify them. Something that simple goes a long way towards establishing a workplace free of hazards which have the potential to cause serious injury to workers.
While responsibility of training and inspections can certainly be shared, the ultimate responsibility of jobsite safety should fall to one person. There is a very good reason for this. There shouldn’t be anything vague about protocols for keeping workers safe, and passing the buck should not be an option.
Unfortunately, that is what many insurance companies try to do when there is a construction site injury. Many of the cases we take here at Klemick and Gampel involve insurers trying to steer the blame back to the worker. They dig into medical histories or look for irrelevancies that they can turn into relevancies. They try to intimidate you into accepting a pittance of a settlement by bringing up things like drug or alcohol use. And they do this so they can keep bringing in the monthly premiums from the contractor while avoiding any significant payouts.
Having an experienced construction accident attorney changes all that.
Klemick and Gampel are known throughout Florida for bringing the fight to the insurance companies and getting them to claim their rightful responsibility for the safety of the workers on the jobsites that they insure. If you have been injured in a construction accident in the Miami area, it is crucial that you obtain not just the services of any attorney, but a lawyer that understands construction work, jobsite safety regulations and, most importantly, the methods and practices of insurance companies.
Facing an insurer without legal counsel is almost a guarantee that you will be left with either a settlement that is worth a fraction of what you should get or that you will receive nothing at all. Imagine trying to recover from a serious injury with little or no financial support. Imagine trying to feed your family. Or what if the injury was severe to the point where you could no longer return to work? These are not scenarios that should be left up to the insurance companies.
If you or a loved one has been injured in a construction accident in the Miami area, contact the law offices of Klemick and Gampel today.