Construction work often requires workers to perform their jobs at great heights. Because of this, scaffolding is a common feature of construction sites in North Carolina. Unfortunately, scaffold injuries are exceptionally common.
According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration — OSHA — approximately 65% of construction workers frequently spend time on scaffolds. OSHA also points out that scaffold accidents are not only some of the most common construction site accidents, but also some of the most serious. Part of the problem comes back to OSHA regulation violations regarding:
OSHA requires that a scaffold be designed to support its own weight as well as four times more than its intended maximum load. Suspension ropes must be designed to support six times the intended maximum load. However, problems can arise even if a scaffold is correctly designed, but incorrectly constructed.
Inspections are another key component. Employers should be sure to inspect scaffolds before each shift, specifically looking for visible defects. A competent person should also supervise any time that a scaffold is erected, dismantled, moved or altered in any way.
Scaffold injuries can be quite serious, putting some victims out of work for extensive periods of time. This means time off work with no paycheck, but there may still be medical bills piling up in the mailbox. Victims who are currently in this situation should be sure that they understand what benefits they qualify for through North Carolina’s workers’ compensation system. For example, securing benefits for lost wages and medical bills can be key to some people’s recovery.