The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) recently found that between 2003 and 2013, 200 out of 230 accidents in steelworker facilities were due to safety violations. In totally, approximately 3 million people were injured in the workplace in 2012 and more than 4,300 of those injuries resulted in fatalities.
Employers are often shielded by worker’s compensation which provides immunity from personal injury lawsuits. However, personal injury attorneys can sometimes pursue lawsuits against responsible third parties such as contractors, equipment manufacturers or suppliers. However, determining which third parties may be responsible requires significant investigation and analysis of the facts of the case.
For this reason, an early investigation into the facts of the accident, such as the accident report, witness testimonials and physical evidence are critical to a case. In some instances, the company may conduct an investigation of the accident providing invaluable information regarding potential responsible third parties. If the accident is significant, OSHA may be brought in to perform an independent analysis of the cause of the accident and whether it was due to safety violations. A copy of this report can be obtained through OSHA and may be instrumental to showing potential liability.
Even if there isn’t a report from OSHA, analyzing OSHA standards and potential violations may help bolster negligence claims. There are additional standards and regulations that can provide potential violations such as the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) and the American Iron and Steel Institute. An experienced attorney can analyze the facts of the case and determine which set of guidelines or rules are applicable to the case.
Oftentimes, an overlooked responsible third party is the manufacturer of faulty or defective equipment or machines. Accidents frequently occur because machines or equipment are unreasonably dangerous or fail to contain proper warnings. A thorough analysis of the causes behind workplace accidents is the only way to determine whether a manufacturer or supplier of defective equipment is at fault.
Only an experienced workplace injury attorney can analyze the facts of the case to determine whether the employer or a third party is responsible for the injury. Worker’s compensation payments can provide some form of reparation to injured workers but for serious injuries, they can leave workers without the proper financial compensation to provide for their families.
For more information regarding workplace injuries, please contact us. We have the experience and knowledge necessary to handle your claim. Our experience inside and outside of the courtroom has led to our induction in the Multi-Million Dollar Advocates Forum, Million Dollar Advocates Forum and SuperLawyers by Texas Monthly Magazine.