New Orleans crane accidents are some of the most dangerous types of construction accidents. Cranes are massive and difficult to control. Any miscalculation while operating the crane can cause the death or serious injury of people beneath the heavy load. A crane accident can cause the injuries of construction workers who are nearby as well as pedestrians. When cranes fall on buildings, those inside the buildings can become injured.
At Koch & Schmidt, we understand the dangers involved in New Orleans crane accidents. If you or your loved one have suffered a severe personal injury in a crane accident, you may have a legal claim to compensation. If your loved one died due to a crane accident, you might have a wrongful death claim against the person or company that caused the crane accident. We have decades of experience with successfully recovering compensation on behalf of our clients. Contact our law firm today to schedule your initial consultation.
Cranes Are Dangerous Pieces of Construction Equipment
We can understand why crane malfunctions can cause such severe injuries by understanding crane design. There are several different types of cranes, including tower cranes, mobile cranes, ship cranes, truck cranes, and marine cranes. When one part of a crane fails to function correctly, even more failure within the system can result. The components of the crane include the pulley, lever, and hydraulic cylinder.
Crane operators use the lever to lift heavy objects. The beam pivots with the heavy load moving toward the lower end of the crane. The pulley moves the wire, belt, and cable around. Crane cables wrap around the heavy load to secure the load. Finally, the hydraulic cylinder provides the force necessary to lift the heavy load. When any of these parts malfunction, a crane accident can result.
Common Causes of Crane Accidents
When construction companies do not abide by crane safety manuals and standards set forth by the Occupational Safety and Health Act (OSHA), accidents can happen. Failure to take the following safety precautions can cause serious crane accidents:
- Failure to select the appropriate type of crane for the job
- Setting up the crane improperly
- Failure to be aware of the operational limits of the crane
- Failure to clean the area around the crane operation
- Use of the crane beyond the crane’s operational limits
- Failure to adhere to the safety standards set forth by OSHA
- Manufacturing defects of the crane
- Inexperience on the part of the crane operator
- A crane operator’s failure to account for weather conditions, such as wind or snow
Crane Accidents Caused By Human Error
The majority of crane accidents happen due to human error. When operators do not follow the specifications set forth by the manufacturer when operating the machinery, the crane can become overloaded and crash into a building or tip over. Many accidents happen when the crane operator hoists a heavy load that exceeds the capacity of the crane.
In other cases, an object or the equipment falls and comes into contact with an electrical current. When this dangerous accident occurs, victims can become electrocuted by the electrical current. In other cases, the crane tops over and crushes a building or motor vehicle on the street. Construction companies often use cranes in densely populated cities. When a crane accident happens, the results can be devastating, causing multiple deaths.
The Operation of Cranes Has Become Incredibly Complex
Cranes are extremely tall and heavy. Some of the tallest cranes can telescope to over 500 feet. As cranes have grown in weight and height, the controls used to operate a crane have become more complex. When a crane falls over, they can potentially crash through several stories of a multi-story building.
Construction companies have a duty to hire competent employees and ensure that their employees have enough training to use the crane. Many crane units have libraries of complex operation manuals that delve into extensive detail. Crane operators often do not have time to read these manuals or spend enough time practicing with the crane before they begin the task.
Bringing a Lawsuit for Injuries Caused by a Crane
If you’ve suffered an injury caused by a crane, you may be wondering what to do next. Victims of personal injuries caused by another person or company’s negligence have a right to file a personal injury lawsuit. Family members whose loved one died in a crane accident may have a right to bring a wrongful death lawsuit.
The first step in filing a personal injury lawsuit is determining who was at fault for your injuries. Frequently, the crane operator’s negligence causes the crane accident. In some cases, crane operators lack the experience to operate the crane safely. You may be able to file a lawsuit against the crane operator’s employer. If a defective crane caused your injuries, you might have a right to bring a product liability lawsuit against the manufacturer or retailer of the crane. At Koch & Schmidt, we will evaluate your case’s facts and help you determine who is financially liable for your personal injuries.
Recovering Compensation After a Crane Accident Injury
Crane accident injuries are often debilitating, ensuring that the victim cannot return to work. You may have concerns about how to provide for your family going forward. Injuries caused by a crane accident often include:
- Brain injury
- Broken bones
- Back injuries
- Spinal cord injuries
- Crush injuries
- Head injuries
Contact Our New Orleans Crane Accident Lawyers
If you or your loved one have become injured in a crane accident, we can help. You may be entitled to financial compensation for your injuries. At Koch & Schmidt, we advocate for our clients’ best interests and have a successful track record of winning compensation for our clients. The sooner you speak to an experienced crane accident lawyer, the better. Contact our New Orleans personal injury law firm today to schedule your initial consultation.