Falls from roofs are a common cause of injuries in the construction industry. There are Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) standards in place to protect workers from roofs falls, but these standards are not enforced. So, falls from roofs remain a serious problem in construction industry. In this post, our St. Louis work injury lawyer will discuss various aspects of these accidents.
How common are falls from roofs?
Falls from roofs are a common problem primarily in the construction industry. In fact, falls from heights account for almost a third of all construction industry fatalities. According to the list of top 10 disabling work injuries compiled by the Liberty Mutual Workplace Safety Index, falls to a lower level rank fourth.
Workers at high risk of falling off a roof
According to a study published in the Journal of Safety Research is was revealed that the some classes of workers are at a high risk of suffering a fatal fall from a roof on the work site. These workers include:
- Workers employed with roofing contractors
- Iron workers
- Individuals working for establishments with 10 or fewer workers
- Residential construction site workers
- Foreign-born workers
- Hispanic workers
- Workers in the South
Types of injuries caused by falls from roofs
Fatal falls are the ones that occur from height, this is why falls from roofs are particularly fatal. The workers who survive falls from roofs may still sustain severe injuries, which include:
- Sprains and strains
- Cuts and lacerations
- Brain injuries, including concussions and traumatic brain injury (TBI)
- Bone Fractures
- Bruises and contusions
- Back and spinal cord injuries, including paralysis
- Ankle, foot and knee injuries.
Top reasons why roofing accidents occur
There are various reasons why roofing accidents are so common, however, the most common is the failure of the employer to adhere to OSHA safety standards. Ideally, the workers who have to work on heights such as on a steep roof or low slope should wear protective gear so that in event of a slip or fall, they should be prevented from falling on the ground below. The problem, however, is that quite often workers are not provided with proper guardrail systems with toe boards, personal fall arrest systems and safety systems. This increases their chances of suffering a fatal injury in the event of a fall from a roof.
Workers compensation benefits for falls from roofs
Workers who suffer slip and fall injuries at their place of work are generally entitled to workers compensation benefits. While workers compensation is a no fault system, there are cases when the claim is denied or some unnecessary hurdles are created by the insurance company. In such cases, it is essential to seek help from a competent and qualified St. Louis workers compensation lawyer. Call (314) 361-4300 today to learn more about your legal rights as an injured Missouri worker.