What is a Construction Site Backover Injury?
Workers on California construction sites put their lives and physical well-being at risk in numerous ways. Out of the many potential sources for serious injury on a work site, one of the top sources of injury is the same on and off a job site: motor vehicle accidents. Construction workers are at a particularly high risk of suffering from backover, or backup, injuries. On-the-job backover injury victims are often entitled to compensation for their injuries through workers’ compensation benefits or, in some cases, damages from a personal injury lawsuit. Read on to learn about construction site backup injuries, and speak with a Los Angeles workers’ compensation lawyer to learn about your right to money damages after a backover accident.
How do backover injuries happen?
Backover injuries occur when the operator of a motor vehicle—whether a large truck, or equipment such as a backhoe—strikes a worker while backing up. Backover injuries are common on job sites for several reasons:
- Vehicles with obstructed views: Many of the industrial vehicles on construction sites do not have good visibility when traveling in reverse. While OSHA regulations state that workers operating vehicles with poor rear visibility should get help from a spotter when traveling in reverse to let them know when someone is behind them, this doesn’t always happen. Additionally, some backover accidents happen while a spotter for one vehicle is struck by another vehicle traveling in reverse.
- Noise: OSHA regulations state that industrial vehicles should have backup alarms that are audible over the other noises on a job site, but construction site noise often reaches levels that backup alarms can’t match. Not all vehicles on a construction site are required to have alarms, so some employees have no warning that a vehicle is heading in their direction. Workers wearing hearing protection are also prone to missing the sound of a backup alarm, as well.
- Riders falling off: Workers who are riding on the outside of a large vehicle sometimes fall off and become the victims of backover accidents.
Backup accidents take dozens of lives each year, with the Bureau of Labor Statistics reporting 64 deaths resulting from backovers in 2015. Simple measures such as installing backup cameras on large vehicles or making regular use of spotters can help to prevent these needless deaths on the job.
If you or a loved one has been the victim of an on-the-job injury in California, get help obtaining the money you deserve for your injuries by contacting the effective and professional Los Angeles workers’ compensation lawyers at Joe, Southard & Yeoh for a free initial consultation at 424-325-2205.