Excavation and trench construction are often used in construction projects—and they also pose significant risks to workers. Accidents in these settings can lead to severe injuries or even fatalities.
When construction workers suffer on-the-job injuries, they’re typically entitled to file a workers’ compensation claim. This no-fault system covers medical expenses and lost wages. In some cases, a worker may also be eligible to file a third-party claim or sue their employer directly.
Here are some of the most common excavation and trenching injuries:
- Cave-ins: One of the most catastrophic events in trench construction accidents is a cave-in. When the walls of an excavation or trench collapse, workers inside can become trapped or buried under tons of soil. This leads to traumatic injuries or fatalities.
- Crush injuries: Heavy equipment and machinery are often used in excavation and trench work. Workers may suffer crush injuries if they are caught between equipment or between equipment and trench walls. These injuries can result in broken bones, internal injuries, amputations and death.
- Falls: Trenches can be deep, and working at the bottom can be dangerous. Workers may fall from the edges or sides of trenches or excavation sites, leading to fractures, head injuries or spinal cord injuries.
- Struck-by accidents: Workers are at risk of being struck by objects or materials that may fall or be dislodged from the excavation site or construction equipment. This can cause head injuries, fractures, or even fatalities.
- Electrocution: Excavation work often involves digging near utility lines or cables. Accidentally hitting an electrical line can result in severe electrical burns or electrocution.
- Suffocation and asphyxiation: Trenches may contain hazardous gases or lack adequate ventilation. Workers can suffocate or be overcome by toxic fumes, leading to asphyxiation.
- Chemical exposures: Depending on the nature of the excavation, workers may encounter hazardous chemicals or substances that can cause chemical burns, respiratory problems or other health issues.
- Heat-related illnesses: Working in trenches during hot weather can lead to heat-related illnesses like heat exhaustion or heatstroke. These can be life-threatening if not promptly treated.
- Musculoskeletal injuries: Digging, lifting heavy materials and working in awkward positions can lead to injuries like strains, sprains and back injuries.
- Repetitive stress injuries: Workers involved in excavation and trench construction may perform repetitive tasks that can lead to conditions like carpal tunnel syndrome or tendonitis.
Although workers’ compensation is a no-fault system, some claims can be difficult to prove. Furthermore, you may be eligible for additional claims and damages from other parties. Call the Law Offices of Tim Misny to learn more about your options.
Discuss your claim with an Ohio lawyer today
The Law Offices of Tim Misny can help you with your excavation or trenching case. When you’re the victim of negligence or recklessness, I’ll Make Them Pay!® Call my office at (877) 614-9524 so that I can evaluate your case right away.