In June 2015, the employee of a tree-trimming company was injured when a crane tipped over while trimming branches in front of Penn Charter School in Philadelphia. The man was transported to the hospital with non-life-threatening injuries, but it demonstrates how dangerous working with heavy machinery can be to employees.
Despite the fact that this employee had non-life-threatening injuries, his injuries may have kept him from working and required medical attention.
Under workers’ compensation laws in Pennsylvania, the tree-trimming company must have coverage for their employees and it is this coverage that would pay the employee’s wages while they were recovering and any medical bills incurred to treat those injuries.
There are many reasons why heavy machinery accidents occur. In some cases, it is user error due to improper training or it could be due to carelessness of a machine operator. Because heavy machinery has moving parts, the equipment could have a defect or it could malfunction in some way that could lead to an accident.
The company may not have performed routine maintenance or not installed proper safety devices. It is also possible that those operating the machinery did not follow routine safety precautions, either because they were in a hurry, distracted or in an effort to take shortcuts to move on to the next job.
The weight of heavy equipment can lead to very serious injuries when there is an accident. Consider the following weights of common heavy machinery:
Because common construction equipment is so heavy, the potential for serious and life-threatening injuries are much more significant than in other types of accidents. Injuries have included spine and spinal cord injuries as well as traumatic brain injuries.
Heavy equipment accidents have also caused crush injuries to extremities and other parts of the body and most of these types of injuries are fatal. Faulty equipment may also cause burns or electrocution.
After a machine accident, investigation may be required to determine who is responsible for the accident. All companies must purchase workers’ compensation insurance or agree to self-insure the company should an employee be injured.
In Pennsylvania, even if you or another employee had any fault in the accident, you are still eligible for workers’ comp for your lost wages and medical bills.
If you or a loved one has been injured in a heavy machinery accident in Philadelphia or other area of the state, or if a loved one has died of injuries sustained in such an accident, contact Lundy Law today to learn what rights you may have. By completing the simple form online or calling us at 1-800-Lundy Law, you can learn more about workers’ comp claims and whether you may be eligible for additional compensation.