If you check the weather section of the Baltimore Sun on any given day from November through April, you are bound to see conditions ranging from sleet, snow, and ice to fog and wind. For many people, inclement weather means heading indoors, but construction workers have a job to do. You cannot take the season off, so you will encounter tough work conditions and an increased risk of workplace construction accidents.
Even with sufficient training and strict compliance to safety regulations, injury-causing incidents can still occur. As such, you should trust a Baltimore County workers’ compensation lawyer to advise you on your legal remedies if you were hurt. Plus, you can better protect against construction accidents when you know the biggest weather threats to your safety.
Rain presents significant risks on a construction site, but precipitation can be even more dangerous when it comes in the form of fluffy, white flakes. Surfaces, equipment, and tools will be more slippery, even with just a light dusting of snow. With heavier accumulation, snow can also hide potential hazards that result in slips, trips, and falls. Plus, when the temperature hovers around freezing, precipitation may turn to sleet, which combines all the dangers of rain, ice, and snow to create an extremely hazardous construction site.
The primary threat in foggy conditions is visibility, primarily for operators of heavy equipment, such as:
- Graders; and,
In addition, fog can reduce visibility for vehicle drivers, potentially leading to collisions with workers, equipment, or other vehicles.
Heavy breezes mostly affect construction employees who are working on ladders, scaffolding, cranes, and other surfaces several feet – or stories – above ground. A gust might be strong enough to blow a worker onto the surface below if site operators do not install and maintain proper fall protection equipment. Wind may also cause irritation to the eyes, mouth, and nose, and can even impact visibility.
When the mercury dips extremely low, there are severe implications for those working on a construction site that is open to the elements. You can easily develop hypothermia and frostbite within a matter of minutes, especially in your extremities. Though construction workers in Maryland will not have to worry about the other extreme for several months, there are also risks associated with heat and humidity in the summer. Heat exhaustion and dehydration can lead to serious illness, while heat stroke may be potentially life-threatening. This medical condition causes the kidneys to shut down, possibly leading to death.
Discuss Your Rights with a Baltimore County, MD Workers’ Comp Attorney
Maryland workers’ compensation laws provide monetary benefits to injured employees, including those in the construction industry. You may be able to recover for your medical costs, wage replacement, and other losses, but the claims process can be complex. Instead of putting your rights at risk in a workers’ comp matter, please contact attorney Michael A. Freedman for assistance. We can set up a free initial consultation to review your circumstances and determine next steps.