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Construction Site Accidents: Preventing Fires & Explosions


Construction workers face countless hazards every time they clock into work. In fact, there are over 700 construction-related deaths reported in the United States each year. This alarming statistic can be attributed to the fact that construction companies often cut corners when it comes to safety. Fatalities often stem from falling objects, unfortunate machinery accidents, and, of course, fires and explosions.

A construction site fire or explosion can injure countless workers. These incidents are often caused by:

  • Explosives
  • Petroleum gas
  • Vehicle accidents
  • Electrical shortages
  • Faulty wiring
  • Demolition accidents
  • Flammable and combustible liquids
  • Pressurized container explosions
  • Malfunctioning equipment
  • Arc flashes and blasts
  • Improperly stored chemicals
  • Failure to extinguish an open flame

Sadly, almost every construction site fire or explosion is preventable. Supervisors, foremen, and site workers need to communicate openly, avoid shortcuts, and adhere to basic safety practices throughout the duration of a job. By working together, employees can help prevent tragic incidents and life-altering injuries.

Best safety practices include:

  • Keeping a construction site smoke-free
  • Properly disposing of flammable wastes
  • Following proper safety protocols at all times
  • Carefully inspecting construction machinery and tools
  • Properly storing any chemicals, flammable items, and solvents
  • Training employees to respond to a fire

According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), all employers have an obligation to make sure their employees recognize and can perform appropriate evacuation procedures. This can be achieved by implementing regular workplace fire protection and prevention training programs.

What Happens If I’ve Been Injured?

No matter the severity of your injury, it’s vital that you seek immediate medical attention. Untreated burn injuries can lead to serious infections and other life-threatening medical emergencies.  Sometimes, it can take a few days for the signs and symptoms of a severe burn to properly develop. A qualified medical professional can examine your injuries and provide you with the proper treatments. Plus, your medical record can help you secure workers’ compensation benefits.

Common fire and explosion injuries include:

  • Burn injuries
  • Blast Injuries
  • Shrapnel injuries
  • Psychological injuries
  • Impact injuries
  • Traumatic brain injuries
  • Neck injuries
  • Spinal cord injuries
  • Inhalation injuries

Once your condition is stabilized, your next step is to contact an experienced construction accident attorney who can investigate your case and help you identify a negligent party. This involves taking pictures of the accident site, talking to witnesses, and reviewing the details of your workplace accident report.

Unfortunately, it’s not unusual for an employer or their insurance company to deny a workers’ compensation claim. That’s where we come in. Our legal team can develop a comprehensive case strategy that proves your injury, no matter how minor or severe, occurred during the “course and scope” of your employment. If your claim is approved, you can secure medical benefits, temporary or permanent disability, and financial assistance for any lost wages.

Is Workers’ Compensation My Only Option?

In South Carolina, workers’ compensation is the only way you can legally take action against your employer for a work-related injury. However, you can file a third-party workplace injury claim against a negligent party who contributed to your injury. This option allows injured employees to secure compensatory damages not available through workers’ compensation.

Depending on your specific situation these third-party entities may include:

  • People who aren’t supervisors or project managers
  • Motor vehicle drivers
  • Defective product manufacturers
  • Public utility providers

Explore Your Options Today

If you’ve been injured in a construction site fire or explosion, contact the Charleston construction accident attorneys at Pierce, Sloan, Kennedy & Early LLC. Our legal team has been helping injured parties recover damages and pursue workers’ compensation benefits since 1991. We know that it’s difficult to take legal action when you’re struggling to recover from a serious accident injury. Fortunately, you can leave the legal details to us. We’ve recovered millions of dollars on behalf of our clients, and we look forward to utilizing the full extent of our resources and experience to help you pursue a favorable case outcome.  

Contact Pierce, Sloan, Kennedy & Early LLC at (843) 968-0886 to schedule a free consultation. We represent clients in South Carolina, Georgia, and Florida.

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