Now that summer is almost here, several construction projects will start emerging all around Oklahoma. Drivers might get annoyed by the amount of traffic this causes, but building contractors are eager to put their skills to good use during one of the busiest times of the year.
This also means that construction workers should start refreshing themselves on their safety training. Recent reports suggest that the southern states have a high accident rate when it comes to crane operations. Workers should be aware of the risks and what they can do after an injury on the job.
A recent report by CBS 11 highlights how Texas had the highest rate of fatal crane accidents from 2011 to 2015. It hasn’t gotten much better since, as there have been 8 North Texas workers killed by crane accidents since 2012. These accidents ranged from the crane collapsing, dropping supplies or toppling over on top of the workers.
Most of these problems occur from the crane itself rather than the people operating them, and Texas wasn’t the only state to deal with these issues. OSHA conducted 77 crane inspections in Oklahoma and the other states surrounding the northern Texas region and found that over 70 percent of them had safety violations.
As workers take more precautions to ensure their cranes are working functionally, injured employees should be aware of a recent court case that may impact workers’ compensation from a crane accident going forward. Earlier this year, an Oklahoma construction worker received compensation after a crane amputated his left arm and gave him serious nerve pain.
He was originally set to get $15 million after suing the Oklahoma County District Court and getting additional payments in economic damages, but the court cut it down to $9.7 million due to a 2011 law that caps the total amount of non economic damages an injured worker can receive. He took the case back to the Oklahoma Supreme Court and won, resulting in the state removing the cap.
Given the mixed opinions on the matter, it’s unknown how long this may last. Injured workers should speak with an Oklahoma workers’ compensation attorney to see how they can get the most out of the recovery process.