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Ladder accidents aren’t only tied to safety equipment

| May 3, 2021 | Third-Party Liability

Construction workers face countless hazards during every shift. From the risk of toxic exposure and being struck by falling debris to crush injuries and vehicle accidents, construction workers can suffer life-changing injuries no matter the scope of the job or the size of the worksite. Unfortunately, numerous accidents can be caused by faulty products, shoddy materials or defective manufacturing.

One tool that is universally relied-upon on any type of construction site is the ladder. Workers can use ladders to traverse great distances up and down several floors during a project. Whether it is a home renovation or a new build, workers can be seen hauling material or tools up and down ladders all day. Unfortunately, when a ladder fails, the worker can fall, leading to devastating injuries such as broken bones, head trauma, spinal cord damage and paralysis.

Why would a ladder fail?

It is not uncommon for a construction site accident to be caused by third-party negligence. This means that the accident is not related directly to the actions of the worker, but it is caused by the actions of another entity. In the example of the defective ladder, the third-party would be the company who designed, manufactured or tested the ladder prior to the construction worker using it.

While the ladder can be defective in numerous ways, there are common faults that could occur, including:

  • Loose steps
  • Defective welds
  • Defective non-slip surfaces
  • Defective non-slip feet
  • Overall frame weakness

While OSHA has published numerous regulations regarding ladder safety on the job site, they do not generally account for third-party liability. Unfortunately, a defective design or manufacturing process (including using substandard materials) can lead to catastrophic injuries no matter how safe the construction worker was acting. From inspecting the ladder before use and using safety harnesses to respecting the weight limit and maintaining three points of contact, a faulty ladder will fail regardless.

If you were injured on a construction site due to someone else’s negligence or inattention, it is wise to explore your options for monetary compensation through the legal process. An experienced attorney can provide the guidance you need.