A tragic Washington state accident made national recently when a concrete barrier fell from an overpass while workers performed a construction project. Closer to home, a cement truck overturned in South Carolina, and in March three workers were killed on the job in North Carolina. Construction sites and designated construction zones create hazards not only for the workers participating in the project, but those driving and walking around these areas as well. Injuries can occur to innocent passersby if companies, contractors, and individuals do not take adequate precautions to protect the public from this dangerous work.
Construction Zone Accidents
There is a reason why South Carolinians are punished with steep fines and even jail time for speeding in designated work zones. Work zones have many characteristics that make them particularly dangerous for workers and non-workers alike. For example, a construction zone on a freeway is likely to have several, if not dozens, of workers out in the open without any protection from oncoming traffic. Even with reflective gear, warning signs, flashing lights, no lane change zones, and even an increased police presence, people will still inevitably speed and risk the lives of the workers.
On top of that, the drivers themselves risk running into large, heavy machinery that can cause catastrophic injury to themselves, workers, and other drivers. In fact, it is estimated that 85 percent of fatalities that occur in work zones are deaths of drivers and passengers and vehicles and not the workers themselves. Consider the following common scenario: An inattentive driver speeds past a large cone, knocking it over. This causes a chain reaction of events, leading to the next driver swerving and causing an accident involving multiple vehicles, persons, and possibly even workers and/or work vehicles or machinery.
While these chain-reaction types of accidents can certainly occur anywhere, work zones are highly susceptible to these types of accidents. Accidents in these conditions can be particularly troubling when a gas leak is present and there is any sort of open flame at the construction zone. Manipulating metals, welding, cutting—each of these can lead to an open flame or sparks which can lead to fires or even explosions under certain conditions.
South Carolina Personal Injury Lawyers
Regardless of whether you were injured as a construction worker or as a passerby in a vehicle in a construction zone, you have legal remedies if you were injured due to another person or entity’s negligence. As an employee, you may have options for workers’ compensation in addition to civil legal remedies that may be able to compensate you for your losses. If you were a driver or passenger, you may be able to hold another driver, a construction company, or another entity liable for injuries inflicted upon you due to another’s negligence. Regardless of the circumstances surrounding your accident, our experienced personal injury attorneys at the Solomon Law Group will listen to your concern and advise you on the best path for litigation. We will ensure that you understand what is going on with your case every step of the way and we will advocate on your behalf to receive the greatest compensation possible. If you or anyone you know has been injured or killed in an auto accident, work-related accident, or in a construction zone, contact our Columbia office to learn more about your legal options.