Construction work is some of the highest risk work for injuries or even death on the job. So far in New York in 2016, 29 construction workers have been killed on the job. Due to the large machinery, the movement of heavy materials and many other risk factors, there is substantial risk to those who work in construction in New York and elsewhere.
On Wednesday, Dec. 21, 2016, a construction crew working in Chelsea was reminded of how risky their work truly is. A member of their team fell through a hole at their worksite, sustaining injuries and requiring emergency aid.
Construction worker fell and was unable to get back out
In what could easily be considered a nightmare scenario, a worker fell through a hole and was unable to get back out on his own. He was trapped, injured and in pain, for a half an hour. Emergency crews had to work to extricate him from the hole, which was between twelve and fifteen feet deep. Once he was brought out of the hole, he was stabilized for emergency transportation. The worker was taken by ambulance to Bellevue Hospital, where he was receiving care for serious, but not life threatening injuries. Co-workers on the project indicated it was likely he broke his legs during the fall.
The worksite at 221 West 29th Street will result in a 21-story apartment building with 95 units when completed. Construction will likely not be much delayed by this incident. For the injured worker, however, those broken legs could mean months off of work. Depending on the severity of the injuries and how well he heals, this injury could effectively end his construction career.
Accidents can impact workers for years
An injury like a broken leg requires immediate medical care, followed by ongoing medical intervention for some time. The fracture could require surgery or simple setting. The worker will need physical therapy and possibly occupational therapy to regain full use of his damaged limbs. In a best case scenario, he could be back at work in a few months. Hopefully, his injuries and subsequent treatment will be fully covered by workers’ compensation insurance via his employer.
In a worse case scenario, he could develop Chronic Regional Pain Syndrome. CRPS affects those who suffer a bone or nerve injury for the rest of their lives, causing pain, swelling, and discoloration. Regardless of the outcome, this worker will likely incur substantial medical debt during this process, especially if his employer tries to deny his workers’ compensation claim.
An attorney can protect you after a worksite accident
Whether you need help negotiating with insurance companies for coverage and payments to offset lost wages or have an employer who is trying to deny your claim, an attorney can help. Experienced personal injury attorneys understand the complications and expenses that can occur after a worksite injury. They know how to appeal a workers’ compensation decision and how to file a civil suit, if necessary.