For Massachusetts Worker Injured on Construction Site
While working as a laborer for a subcontractor on a construction site, the plaintiff was struck on the head by a piece of cement/mortar that fell from a building. At the time of the incident, the plaintiff suffered fractures of the spinous processes at C6, C7, T1 and T2.
The Defendants’ Case
The defendants were the general contractor and subcontractor asbestos removal company. They each disputed that they were responsible for the injuries suffered by the plaintiff at the construction site. Specifically, the defendants asserted that although the plaintiff was struck on the head by falling cement, the cement did not fall nor was it caused to fall by the defendants. Moreover, the defendants asserted that although the cement fell onto the plaintiff’s head, the defendants took all reasonable and necessary precautions to avoid this incident.
Establishing the Construction Worker’s Case
Through the course of extensive discovery, photographs, witness statements and expert witnesses, the attorneys at Mazow|McCullough, PC were able to establish evidence that the defendants failed to properly secure the site of any and all loose debris prior to starting work on the date of the injury.
The day before the injury, the defendants were conducting demolition of the multilevel building at the site. While demolishing the building, it was discovered that several areas of the building (including several windows) contained asbestos. Work was stopped on the 14th to allow for the asbestos removal on the 15th.
There were several areas of the building with exposed loose, unsecured cement and metal. Moreover, the building itself was structurally weak due to the demolition. The defendants failed to secure the area of any and all loose debris prior to directing the plaintiff to work in his designated area on the date of his injury.
The Circumstances of the Workplace Injury
Further, while the plaintiff was removing asbestos from a window, one of the defendants’ employees was operating a motorized skid steer/bobcat, attempting to remove plywood from another window in close proximity to the plaintiff. The defendant employee had a metal chain attached to the machine and was attempting to pull the plywood away from the building so that the asbestos removal crew (including the plaintiff) could remove the asbestos.
The force of the machine and the efforts to remove the plywood caused the loose cement and debris from several floors above to fall onto the plaintiff’s head. Specifically, as the defendant employee was attempting to back away from the building and rip the plywood from the wall, he caused the cement to fall onto the plaintiff.
Injuries Suffered by the Construction Worker
Among the injuries suffered by the plaintiff were a broken neck and several fractured spinous processes. The plaintiff was transported by ambulance to the UMASS Memorial Medical Center in Worcester for treatment. He continued to be treated locally (within the Merrimack Valley area) upon release from the hospital for his neck and back pain. Although the plaintiff has been discharged from active medical treatment he remains susceptible to future arthritic conditions and future injury/exacerbation. Moreover, the plaintiff suffers from an ongoing permanent, partial impairment pursuant to the AMA guidelines of 12%.
Efforts at Mediation and Avoiding a Trial
Efforts at a mediation failed. However, as trial approached, Attorney Kevin McCullough of Mazow|McCullough, PC was able to negotiate a very favorable settlement on behalf of the plaintiff which included payments for his medical bills, lost wages, loss of future earning capacity and pain and suffering.
Have you suffered from a workplace injury? Contact a Massachusetts personal injury lawyer at Mazow|McCullough, PC today for a free consultation.