Individuals involved in crane accidents can suffer serious injuries, which then turn into expensive medical bills, lost income, and in some cases, even death. Fortunately, victims and their families can find remedies under state personal injury laws. These types of remedies might include payment of medical expenses, lost income, pain and suffering, and burial costs. Being involved in a crane accident can have long-lasting consequences. Our attorneys are here to help. Call today.
Can you File a Lawsuit?
Filing a personal injury lawsuit after an accident involving a crane will depend on whether you were an innocent bystander when you were injured or injured while working on the job. For individuals who were working on the job at the time of the injury, workers’ compensation may cover the accident. But, if you were an innocent bystander at the time of the accident or you were an employee and injured by the actions of a third party, you can file a personal injury lawsuit.
Generally, in construction-related personal injury claims, there are several defendants to include in the lawsuit, including the property owner, the project management company, the engineers or architects, crane operator, crane manufacturer, construction company, contractor or subcontractor, or inspector.
Types of Lawsuits
There are several types of lawsuits that might apply to a crane accident, which one you choose to pursue will depend on the specific facts surrounding the incident.
In some instances, the employer has failed to properly train their crane operator, or the crane maintenance worker failed to fix some problem. In those instances, their employers (and they themselves) should be held accountable for their negligence.
To prove a negligence claim, you must be able to prove:
- The existence of a duty,
- The defendant owed you this duty,
- There was a breach of the duty,
- You were injured or damaged, and
- The injury or damages were approximately caused by the defendant’s breach of the duty.
Essentially, this means that if the defendant were legally required to act in a specific way in regard to you, they didn’t act in this specific way, and you were injured or damaged in some way because of that inaction, the defendant will be liable for negligence.
Now, in Illinois, the plaintiff must also show that, at the moment of the accident, they were using ordinary care for their own safety and the safety of their property. If they did not use ordinary care (the care that a reasonable person would use under the same circumstances) and this failure is the proximate cause of the injury or damages, they will not be able to prove negligence. But if they can prove that their contributory negligence was less than 50%, they will still be able to recover damages, but the amount they are entitled to will be reduced according to their proportion of negligence.
Premises Liability Claim
In Illinois, if you are injured by a crane while on private property because of the condition of that other person’s property, you can bring a premises liability claim. To bring this type of case, the property owner must owe you a duty of care to keep their property reasonably safe. They must also use reasonable care to discover any unsafe conditions and then give warning of the issue, replace it, or repair it.
There are some cases where the crane accident is linked to a defect in the way the crane was constructed or designed. If this is the case, the crane company, a vendor, or even a supplier could be liable for the defect.
Wrongful Death Suits
Unfortunately, many crane accidents result in fatal injuries. If your spouse or family member was killed in a crane accident, you can file a wrongful death lawsuit to ensure the responsible parties are held accountable. These types of suits result in damages that might include funeral costs, the replacement of the financial support the deceased family member would have provided, and non-economic damages for loss of companionship, support, or affection.
If you or someone you love has been involved in an accident with a crane, the attorneys at Cullotta Bravo Law Group can help. We’ll help you determine the best course of action for you situation. To schedule a free consultation, call us today at (630) 225-8341 or contact us online.