Safety violations on scaffolding leave many injured workers
Some of the most dangerous circumstances faced by construction workers in Colorado are scaffolds. These are structures formed by temporary frameworks to allow workers access to elevated levels as they work on buildings. Safety authorities say approximately 4,500 injured workers and about 50 fatalities linked to scaffolds are reported each year.
Frequently reported causes include structural joints that are compromised because they are rusted or loose. Unsafe inclines or inappropriate planking can cause slippery conditions — often with devastating consequences. All workers on these structures must be equipped with hard hats and fall harnesses that are securely tethered to anchor points at all times.
Random objects on the scaffold surface can cause trip hazards, and this is often the cause for tools to fall from the structure and strike workers at lower levels. The locations in which scaffolds are erected must receive careful consideration to avoid having workers nearby overhead power lines or other electrical cables. These are all avoidable hazards that could cause anything from minor injuries to death.
Injured workers in Colorado who are victims of scaffolding accidents may face long-term consequences. To improve their chances of receiving all the benefits to which they are entitled, some victims choose to seek the support and guidance of an experienced workers’ compensation attorney. Those whose injuries caused disabilities might qualify for more benefits than the usual medical expenses and lost wages. The type and severity of their disabilities will determine the additional benefits that might be awarded, and there might be vocational rehabilitation included to equip disabled workers with new skills.