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Failing to Warn of Construction Site Hazards: Can Employers Be Held Liable?

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Construction companies can be held accountable for injuries if they do not follow all safety regulations. The work site defines the environment in which the workers complete tasks. The environment also dictates what type of personal protective equipment each worker needs. A failure to provide the right protection could lead to liabilities for the company.

Identifying Asbestos on the Work Site

Asbestos remains a problem with construction companies, and older buildings and properties that didn’t undergo abatement are a risk to the workers. When mitigating risks, the employer must provide respirator masks, eye goggles, and gloves. The workers must wear protective clothing to keep the dust off their skin. If a construction company fails to protect their workers, they are liable for any instances of mesothelioma that develops. Injured workers can get started by hiring a lawyer now.

Harnesses and Apparatuses For Working At Great Heights

When working at great heights, the workers need harnesses and scaffolding to prevent them from falling. The employer must test the safety equipment to ensure that it is functioning properly before allowing workers to use it. If the safety equipment fails, the employer is liable if they didn’t test the equipment first. However, if it failed after testing, the manufacturer of the equipment could be to blame.

Identifying Slip and Fall Hazards

Slip and fall hazards must be mitigated at all times during construction projects. It is the responsibility of the project manager and the foreman to evaluate the worksite for these hazards. For example, if managers fail to get proper waste management services, the workers could trip and fall over debris and become injured. Under the circumstances, the employer could be deemed liable for these injuries.

Warning Workers of Electrical Hazards

Electrical hazards must be mitigated regularly, too. The employer must warn their workers of any electrical hazards and shut down the power supply to areas where the workers are completing tasks. When demolishing an existing structure, the power must be cut off before the project begins. This prevents the risk of electrocution and electrical fires as the building is leveled.

The employer must locate all electrical lines in the property and ensure the power source has been disconnected. In high-voltage environments, the company could be liable if the workers become injured because of an arc flash.

Providing PPE for Workers

Construction workers will need proper personal protective equipment for all roles in a construction project. The employer must work with the project manager to determine what PPE each worker needs and ensure that the workers wear it. The construction company must hire a supervisor or foreman to oversee the workers and ensure that they are following company policies.

However, if the workers were supplied PPE and refused to wear it, the employer will not be liable for the worker’s injuries. This is a direct violation of company policy, and the worker could also be refused worker’s compensation by failing to comply with the rules. The insurer would rule that the worker played a role in causing their own injuries.

Construction companies must follow safety regulations to keep their workers and others safe during a project. This includes assessing the entire project for possible risks before it starts. As the project progresses, the foreman or project manager must identify and mitigate risks to prevent worker injuries.

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