Boom Lifts: How Can A Defect Cause Workers Harm?

Boom Lifts: How Can A Defect Cause Workers Harm? 2017-09-06T12:38:49+00:00

Were you hurt in a boom lift accident? If so, you are likely wondering:

  • How can I afford my medical treatments?
  • What caused my accident?
  • Am I eligible to file a lawsuit?
  • How can a lawyer help me?

Our experienced legal team can answer all of your questions.

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It’s a simple fact of life that sometimes workers need to reach high places, regardless of what industry they are in. Sometimes, the area which needs to be worked on isn’t accessible by a ladder and that’s when workers are often given access to a boom lift.

Types Of Boom Lift

There are two types of boom lift:

Articulating / Knucklestraight boom lift

These lifts have a joint in the arm which allows those inside of the bucket to go around obstacles.

Telescoping / Straight

This type of lift sends workers straight up towards their goal.

Even though boom lifts, also known as aerial lifts, are considered safer than ladders or scaffolding, there are dangers associated with these heavy machines and every year, hundreds are hurt while on the job.

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OSHA’s Boom Lift Safety Requirements

According to the Occupational Safety & Health Administration, anyone working on a boom lift should:

  • Have proper training before operating the lift.
  • Understand the proper procedures for handling potential hazards.
  • Be able to demonstrate their knowledge and training before operating the lift.
  • Know where to find the lift limitations on the machinery (ex. Weight restrictions)
  • Perform a pre-start inspection of the lift before starting it.
  • Check to see that entrance gates and openings are fully closed.
  • Ensure anyone in the lift has the proper safety harness on.
  • Check to make sure that the lift is seated on stable ground.
  • Be aware of overhead hazards prior to moving the lift.

Unfortunately, many companies push their workers to overlook these regulations in order to save time and money and that’s when accidents occur.

Common Accidents Involve Boom Lifts

An accident can occur at any time and boom lift accidents often involve:

Overhead Hazards

Ceilings, overhangs, tree branches can all strike a worker in the head and cause serious damage to the skull, brain, or neck.

Electrocution

It’s not uncommon for lifts to take a worker into an area where electrical wires are hanging and if the worker or the metal lift comes into contact with that worker, they risk being electrocuted which can cause serious burns or stop their heart.

Tip Overs

If the boom lift is on uneven ground or too steep of a slope, the entire structure can tip, hurting anyone who happens to be inside or in the bucket.

Falls

It doesn’t matter if a fall is caused because a worker is pushed over the edge of the bucket because they were hit by an overhead object or if the railing in place wasn’t properly secured if they fall, even a short fall can result in life-threatening injuries. Even with a safety harness on, the worker may strike a stationary object in their descent.

However, sometimes, even with all of the proper precautions and training in place, workers still get hurt because of a defect in the boom lift.

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How Can Boom Lifts Be Defective?

Any product, no matter how big or small, as the potential to be dangerous if there is a defect. Just of few examples of defects include those that could cause the lift to tip, could result in the bucket detaching from the arm or could cause the controls to malfunction, resulting in the loss of directional and height control. Under the law, if a boom lift has a defect which causes it to act other than it should and injuries occur as a result, the victims of the accident have the right to pursue legal action.

Types Of Defective Product Lawsuits

There are three types of lawsuits that can be filed by someone who has been injured by a defective product. This includes:x-ray of injured boom lift worker

Defective Designs

The designers of a product are required to make sure that the product they design is safe when used in the manner it was created for.

Defects Caused By Manufacturing

Improper temperatures, the wrong chemicals, or foreign objects can all result in a part that may look normal and safe but that won’t hold up under pressure.

Failure To Provide Adequate Warning

Even when consumers are familiar with an object, there still may be instructions they need in order to use it properly and safely. If those instructions aren’t provided, the company may be held liable.

What Can Be Gained From Filing A Defective Boom Lift Lawsuit?

Plaintiffs who pursue legal action may be able to recover compensation which can cover:

  • Medical expenses
  • Lost wages
  • Physical pain and suffering
  • Emotional trauma

The exact amount differs in each case but the compensation should be enough to cover the plaintiff’s past and future losses.

How Long Does A Plaintiff Have To File?

The statute of limitations is the amount of time that a plaintiff has to file before they will no longer be allowed to pursue legal action. This amount of time depends on the case. The best way to determine if the statute of limitations has passed is to contact an attorney.

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