Construction sites are among the most dangerous places to work in South Carolina. Heavy machinery accidents, falls from heights, and even strenuous labor can result in severe injuries with potentially life-changing consequences.
If you were injured on the job at a South Carolina construction site, the trusted attorneys of Jebaily Law Firm want to help you. Our experienced team can help you explore all possible avenues to pursue the money you need to get back on your feet.
Contact us today to learn more about your options in a free initial consultation.
What Are Common Causes of Work-Related Construction Site Injuries?
Construction workers are consistently at-risk for occupational injuries caused by incidents such as:
- Slips, trips, and falls – Workers can slip or trip and fall as a result of slick surfaces, loose or uneven flooring, cluttered walkways, or poorly lit work areas.
- Injuries from falling debris or equipment – When construction equipment, debris, or work materials fall from heights, they can strike workers beneath them, causing severe injuries.
- Scaffolding collapses – Scaffolds function as temporary work platforms alongside elevated structures. If a scaffold collapses, workers can suffer severe injuries from resulting falls.
- Strain from overexertion or repetitive motions – Lifting heavy objects, lifting with improper technique, and repeatedly performing the same tasks can leave workers with painful soft-tissue injuries.
- Exposure to toxins or dangerous substances – Caustic chemicals, unsafe building materials, and other hazardous substances can leave workers with burns, respiratory diseases, and other serious conditions.
- Crane, machinery, or equipment accidents – Accidents involving heavy machinery such as cranes, forklifts, and other construction vehicles can result in severe harm such as blunt-force trauma and crushing injuries.
- Fires and explosions – Fires and explosions can occur due to electrical problems, lightning strikes, flammable fumes or liquids, or even unattended heaters on construction sites, resulting in serious burn injuries.
Common Types of Construction Site Accidents in South Carolina
Accidents that commonly occur on South Carolina construction sites include:
- Scaffolding falls and trench collapses
- Power tool or equipment accidents
- Accidents involving poorly maintained machinery
- Bulldozer, forklift, crane, and other vehicle accidents
- Flying or falling tools, lumber, or equipment
- Exposure to toxic chemicals or fumes
- Caught in-between object accidents
- Electrocution and burn accidents
- Demolition accidents
Workers’ Compensation and Third-Party Claims After a South Carolina Construction Injury
South Carolina law requires all employers with four or more employees to carry workers’ compensation insurance coverage. If you suffered a work-related injury on a South Carolina construction site, you might be entitled to workers’ compensation benefits.
Workers’ compensation benefits help eligible workers by covering the costs of their medical expenses, a portion of their lost wages, and certain other injury-related losses. Employees may claim workers’ comp benefits regardless of who was at fault for their injuries. Benefits are typically available quickly.
However, workers’ compensation benefits come with some limitations. For one, they do not fully cover employees’ lost wages from missed time at work. Employees are also not entitled to benefits for pain, suffering, and other non-economic losses.
In some circumstances, you may also have grounds for an injury claim against a third party – for example, someone who is not your employer or co-worker. If you can demonstrate that another party’s negligence contributed to your construction-site injuries, you may be able to file a third-party personal injury lawsuit against them to claim compensation in addition to your workers’ comp benefits.
Recoverable Damages in a South Carolina Construction Accident
If you file a successful personal injury lawsuit against a third party after a construction accident in South Carolina, you could be entitled to damages. The term “damages” refers to the money awarded by a judge or jury to compensate you for your losses.
You could receive damages for a range of losses that are not included in workers’ compensation benefits, such as:
- Lost wages – The full value of any wage losses you suffer from missed time at work while you recover from your injuries.
- Pain and suffering – The intangible cost of the physical pain, psychological suffering, and reduction in the quality of life you endure due to your injuries.
- Future losses – The projected value of losses you will likely incur in the future, such as future medical costs and reductions to your lifetime earning capacity.
At Jebaily Law Firm, our South Carolina injury lawyers will fight relentlessly for the full range of compensation you are owed from every available source. We can help you navigate every aspect of your workers’ comp claim and, if necessary, file a third-party lawsuit after a construction site injury.
South Carolina Construction Accident Statistics
The following data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics illustrates the frequency and severity of South Carolina construction accidents:
- In one recent year alone, there were 108 fatal work injuries throughout South Carolina, 27 of which (25%) were in the private construction industry.
- The private construction industry had the highest number of occupational fatalities among all South Carolina industries that year.
- Among all occupational groups, South Carolina construction and extraction workers had the second-highest rate of workplace fatalities, with 22 deaths occurring in one recent year. Construction trade workers accounted for 16 (73%) of these fatalities.
Laws Protecting Construction Workers in South Carolina
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) protects South Carolina construction workers by enforcing federal laws and ensuring their right to a safe workplace. Under federal law, you have the right to:
- View your employer’s workplace safety and health training information in a language you can understand
- Work with required safety equipment, such as protective gloves or harnesses
- Work with machines that are safe to use
- Work with adequate protection against toxic chemicals
- Request a workplace OSHA inspection and communicate with inspectors
- Report work-related injuries, illnesses, and hazards without fear of retaliation
- Review copies of your records from work-related injuries or illnesses
- Review results from tests and inspections for workplace hazards
Talk to a Construction Accident Lawyer Serving South Carolina
Obtaining the compensation you deserve after a workplace injury can be difficult, but you don’t have to go it alone. At Jebaily Law Firm, our experienced construction accident lawyers are prepared to fight aggressively for a favorable outcome on your behalf.
Contact us today to speak with our South Carolina attorneys in a free and confidential case review.