Defective Power Equipment
Written by Faith Anderson on July 30, 2013
Power equipment can be extremely helpful in the construction industry, but it can also cause serious injuries and tragic loss of life if not in proper working condition. Unfortunately, some of the most common causes of defective power equipment injuries involve poor maintenance or overuse, which is an avoidable risk if employers take proper care of their power tools and equipment. Even though most construction workers are fully trained in safety protocol on construction sites, even the best-run job sites can become dangerous if overrun with defective equipment. If you or a loved one has suffered serious injuries caused by defective power equipment, contact an experienced construction accident attorney to explore your compensation options.
Power Tools and Equipment that May be Defective
Modern power tools used on construction sites are driven by powerful electric motors and controlled by sophisticated computers to achieve the best results in efficiency and accuracy. Unfortunately, the power that makes these tools so effective also makes them dangerous when they are not properly used or maintained. In some cases, the failure of employers or supervisors to adequately train workers is the only factor needed to turn a handy piece of power equipment into a destructive weapon. Power tools and equipment that can cause serious injuries or loss of life when defective include:
- Table saws
- Circular saws
- Nail guns
- Welding equipment
One of the most important components of using power tools and equipment is understanding the safety features of the machine and using it in a safe manner. Unfortunately, if the safety features of a power tool are defective or if the product has a faulty design, the consequences can be devastating no matter how well-trained the employee is in safety procedures.
Dangers of Defective Power Equipment
Power tools used on construction sites should have a working safety switch, and when this mechanism fails, the tool should be removed from the job site to prevent serious injury. Unfortunately, some employers choose to cut corners or ignore safety guidelines to save time and money, and workers are often the ones who suffer the consequences of these dangerous actions. When a power tool fails during use, the construction worker may suffer serious injuries like:
- Electrical burns
- Puncture wounds
- Wrongful death
OSHA Regulations for Defective Power Equipment
In order to prevent injury and death caused by defective power equipment on construction sites, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has established the following guidelines for the safe use of power tools and equipment.
- Always wear safety glasses
- Don’t carry power tools by their cords
- Disengage and unplug power tools when not in use
- Don’t yank cords out of their sockets to unplug them
- Keep power tools and equipment well-maintained
- Don’t wear loose clothing or jewelry, and keep long hair tied back
Contact a Construction Accident Attorney for Help
Manufacturers of power tools for industrial use are required to oversee every aspect of the manufacturing process, from design and manufacturing to testing and packaging. If a construction worker is injured while using a power tool in a responsible, reasonably safe manner, the designer, manufacturer, supplier and/or seller may be held liable for damages. If you or a loved one has suffered from a serious injury caused by a defective power tool on the job site, contact an experienced construction accident attorney for legal help. You may be entitled to medical benefits by filing a workers’ compensation claim, or additional compensation by filing a third-party liability claim. With the help of a qualified construction accident lawyer, you can protect your legal rights and pursue the compensation you deserve.