Construction companies have a responsibility to follow workplace safety rules and take precautions to protect their employees at construction sites. When a construction company fails to follow safety regulations or address foreseeable hazards at a job site, it can lead to serious accidents.
If you or a loved one has been injured in a construction accident in Houston, a construction work injury lawyer at Herrman & Herrman, P.L.L.C, is ready to help you. With more than 100 years of combined experience, our compassionate construction accident attorneys in Houston have what it takes to help victims stand up for their rights and pursue full financial compensation. We are committed to helping hardworking people across Texas – through our commitment to fighting for our clients and our deep investment in our local communities.
At Herrman & Herrman, P.L.L.C, we have the experience and resources to tackle the toughest construction accident cases. We can evaluate your case, help you understand your legal options, and help you fight for the justice and compensation you deserve.
Act today. Contact us for your free consultation. Our knowledgeable Spanish– and English-speaking staff are ready to answer your questions. We have offices located in Corpus Christi, Corpus Christi South Side, Brownsville, McAllen, San Antonio, Houston, and Ft. Worth and serve clients throughout Texas.
To get started, call us today at (713) 565-1899 or get help 24/7 through our live online chat.
Hazards That Commonly Cause Construction Accidents in Houston
Construction workers and authorized visitors to construction sites face a wide variety of hazardous conditions that can lead to serious injuries. Some of the primary causes of construction work injuries include:
- Falls from heights such as scaffolds, roofs, and ladders
- Getting caught or crushed between objects
- Falling objects
- Shocks from loose wires and faulty equipment
- Operating vibrating tools such as jackhammers
- Failing to use protective gear and equipment, such as safety nets, goggles, and hardhats
- Scaffolding collapse
- Trench collapse that leads to crushing injuries or suffocation
- Equipment failure
- Fires and explosions
- Machinery accidents
- Lifting, carrying or pushing heavy objects
- Exposure to toxic chemicals or fumes
- Tripping on loose equipment or falling into unexpected ditches or holes
- Vehicle accidents
Common Construction Accident Injuries
Some of the most common injuries on construction sites in the Houston area include:
- Broken bones
- Cuts and lacerations
- Shoulder, neck, and back injuries
- Traumatic brain injury, skull fracture, and other serious head injuries
- Hearing loss
- Burns to the skin, eyes, or internal areas
- Lung damage and other respiratory diseases
- Broken bones
- Internal organ damage
- Elbow and wrist injuries
- Spinal cord injuries
- Muscle strains, sprains, torn ligaments, or other ankle and knee injuries
- Repetitive motion injuries
- Post-traumatic stress disorder
Houston Construction Accident Compensation Laws
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) focuses on workplace safety and protecting workers in Texas and across the country from dangerous work environments and workplace hazards. Under OSHA regulations, employees can expect their employers to adhere to certain safety standards. They have the right to report employers who violate these standards.
Texas state law does not require employers to carry workers’ compensation insurance to protect workers who are injured on the job. But many businesses in Houston still choose to purchase this type of insurance coverage. If your employer does carry workers’ compensation insurance, then you may file for workers’ comp benefits for most accidents that happen while you are acting within the scope of your construction job.
However, this insurance typically doesn’t cover an employee’s workplace injuries if:
- The accident occurred while the employee was under the influence of alcohol or illegal drugs
- The worker was injured while they were committing a crime or doing something that violated company policy
- The injuries were intentionally self-inflicted
If a Texas employer does not carry workers’ comp insurance, then employees have a right under Texas law to sue the employer or a third party for on-the-job injuries. Additionally, non-employees, such as individuals walking on a public sidewalk, have a right to sue for compensation if they are injured in a construction site accident.
To access compensation through a lawsuit, the injured party must prove that:
- The company or person they are suing had a duty to keep them safe
- They breached this duty through some kind of negligence or wrongdoing
- Their wrongdoing or negligence caused the victim’s injuries
To seek compensation through a personal injury lawsuit, the injured party typically must file a construction accident lawsuit within two years of the date of the accident. Otherwise, he or she may lose the right to make a claim and demand compensation. However, there are a number of exceptions to the two-year “statute of limitations” law that may extend the time allowed to file a claim.
A knowledgeable Houston construction injury lawyer can help you understand your legal options and the state and federal regulations that apply to your circumstances.
Construction Accident Statistics in Texas
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), construction is one of the deadliest industries in the country.
- The construction industry typically accounts for over 20% of fatal workplace accidents in the U.S.
- Around 1000 construction workers are killed each year in the U.S. and over 200,000 more injured
- Texas typically has one of the highest rates of construction accident fatalities, with more than 100 construction worker deaths annually
- Some of the most common causes of fatal construction accidents in Texas include falls, transportation incidents, exposure to harmful substances, and getting struck or crushed by objects or equipment
Can I Recover Damages in a Houston Construction Accident Claim?
If you were injured while working at a construction site, you might be able to recover compensation through a variety of legal options.
The first possibility is that you might be able to access benefits for your workplace injury through your employer’s workers’ compensation insurance policy. If your employer carries workers’ comp insurance, you don’t have to prove who caused the accident to qualify for benefits.
You must follow certain steps to file your workers’ compensation claim, such as:
- Notify your employer about your injuries within 30 working days of the work-related construction accident. Your employer should provide you with a list of approved healthcare providers
- Get medical attention for your injuries from a doctor on the employer-provided list
- Within one year of your construction accident or the date you learned of your workplace injury, file an “Employee’s Claim for Compensation for a Work-Related Injury or Occupational Disease” (DWC Form-041) with the Texas Department of Insurance Division of Workers’ Compensation (DWC)
- If your employer’s workers’ comp insurance provider denies your claim, you can appeal their decision through the DWC
The types of benefits available through workers’ comp in Texas help cover things such as medical expenses and income lost due to work-related illnesses or injuries. If an employee dies in a workplace accident, then their surviving loved ones might be able to recover burial expenses and death benefits to cover some of the financial losses caused by the loss of a loved one in a construction accident.
On the other hand, if your employer doesn’t have workers’ comp insurance or if a third party such as another contractor working on the site caused your injury, then you may have a right to sue and pursue a construction injury claim. Additionally, you might be able to file a personal injury lawsuit if you were injured while you were visiting or passing by a construction site as an innocent bystander.
The types of compensation typically available through these Houston construction accident injury lawsuits include:
- Outstanding medical bills
- Future medical expenses
- Lost wages
- Inability to earn comparable income in the future
- Pain and suffering
- Mental anguish
- Loss of consortium or companionship
The laws that apply to construction accident lawsuits in Texas and which types of compensation are available may be confusing to individuals who try to handle an accident claim on their own. However, a knowledgeable construction accident lawyer can evaluate your case at no charge and help you understand your full range of legal options.
Contact a Construction Injury Attorney in Houston, TX
Whether you were injured on the job as a construction worker or you were unexpectedly injured while you were passing by a construction area, Herrman & Herrman, P.L.L.C, can help you stand up for your rights. Our skilled Houston construction injury lawyers have the experience it takes to help sort through the complicated laws surrounding construction accidents and fight for the justice and compensation you deserve.