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Denver Defective Safety Equipment Lawyer

Every day in the U.S., workers sustain injuries caused by defective safety equipment. If you have been hurt or lost a loved one in such an accident, contact Fang Law Firm in Denver as soon as possible. Our experienced Denver defective safety equipment lawyers are dedicated advocates for injured workers.

Why Choose Our Defective Safety Equipment Attorney in Denver?

  • Fang Law Firm was founded on the guiding principle that people deserve personal representation and communication throughout their injury claim.
  • Our Denver defective safety equipment attorneys take a hands-on approach to case management.
  • We maintain a direct, open line of communication with our clients and are available for questions or concerns any time of the day.
  • In fact, we have a phone call guarantee policy – we promise to return your call within 24 hours.

Why You Need a Defective Safety Equipment Lawyer in Denver

Workers’ comp may not be your only option if you have been injured or lost a loved one in a defective safety equipment accident. You may have a product liability claim against the manufacturer or distributor of the defective equipment. Product liability lawsuits can be particularly complicated. Our experienced Denver work injury lawyer can advise you of your legal options and help you pursue the maximum benefits under the law.

An experienced attorney can investigate your defective safety equipment incident and collect evidence of fault or negligence, meaning someone else’s failure to use proper care. For example, proof that your employer failed to inspect and maintain personal protective gear could be used as evidence to serve as the foundation for a personal injury claim. A lawyer will also have connections to courthouses and qualified experts to strengthen your case

Your attorney can file the right type of insurance claim on your behalf or bring a personal injury lawsuit before Colorado’s statutory deadline. Then, your attorney can negotiate with an insurer to fight for maximum compensation for your losses. Most importantly, hiring a lawyer to handle legal matters for you can allow you to focus on healing from your injuries and move forward.

Workplace Safety Equipment Regulations and Requirements in Colorado

In Colorado, both state and federal laws dictate how employers must protect their workers with the required types of safety equipment. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) is the federal agency in charge of enforcing worker safety laws.

Some of the laws that employers in Colorado must obey include:

  • Personal protective equipment (PPE): OSHA requires employers in every state to ensure the use of appropriate PPE based on the industry and the tasks that will be performed by workers.
  • Fall protection: OSHA requires fall protection measures if workers have to work more than a few feet off the ground, including safety nets and personal fall arrest devices.
  • Hazard communication: federal communication standards require employers to provide adequate training, information and flyers regarding potential hazards in the workplace.

If an employer falls short of his or her responsibilities in terms of ensuring worker safety, he or she can be held liable, or financially responsible, for an injured worker’s losses related to a defective safety equipment accident.

Defective Safety Equipment that Can Cause Accidents

Working on a construction site or in other dangerous workplaces, such as industrial sites or warehouses, can be risky, and safety regulations are there to help protect workers. Defective safety equipment can cause serious injuries or death. Examples include:

  • Scaffolding: Scaffolds must be properly constructed and inspected before each shift to ensure their safety. As stated by OSHA, scaffolding must be sound, rigid, and sufficient to carry its own weight plus four times the maximum load intended, without settling or displacement. Scaffolds must also be erected on solid footing.
  • Rigging: Defective rigging must be removed from service. According to OSHA, rigging on suspension scaffolds must be inspected before each shift and after any occurrence that could affect structural integrity by a competent person. The person performing the inspection should ensure that all connections are tight, and no damage has occurred to the rigging.
  • Personal protective equipment: Protective helmets, eye goggles, gloves, etc. must be up to standard and maintained in good condition.
  • Helmets: head safety gear must offer effective protection based on the worker’s environment, such as potential head injuries from falling objects or impacts. A helmet must fit securely and not have been involved in a prior accident.
  • Respiratory protection: face masks, respirators and other equipment used to protect workers from exposure to airborne hazards, such as chemicals, fumes or dust. Defects with this equipment could lead to harmful exposure and related illnesses and injuries.
  • Nail guns, power drills, saws, and other tools: Despite many built-in safety features, any defect in this type of tool can cause serious injuries to workers.
  • Fall protection gear or harnesses: defective fall arrest systems and protection equipment can lead to devastating falls from heights, especially for workers in construction and roofing. These falls can result in catastrophic or fatal injuries.
  • Fire and chemical safety equipment: if gear designed to protect workers from contact with harmful substances or sources of heat contains defects, it may not function properly and can contribute to severe burn injuries.
  • Machine guards: in industrial settings, heavy machinery should have machine guards and safety devices to protect workers from being pulled into the machine, pinched or crushed, or hit with flying debris. Defective, broken, missing or improperly installed machine guards could fail to provide adequate protection.

If any type of safety gear or equipment falls short of regulatory standards, is poorly maintained, broken or damaged, or contains a manufacturing or design defect, it must be replaced. All safety gear should undergo regular testing by employers to ensure quality control.

Who Is Liable?

The party that can be held liable for injuries caused by defective safety equipment in Denver will depend on the cause of the incident. In most cases, liability is given to the individual or entity who violated a safety standard or behaved negligently. In determining liability for an accident and injuries caused by defective safety equipment, the two key questions are:

  • Were any significant maintenance milestones missed?
  • Did a design or manufacturing defect make safety equipment failure more likely to occur?

Equipment that is defective in design or manufacture can fail and cause work-related injuries and fatalities. Depending on the cause of the accident, a worker who is injured when defective safety equipment fails may be entitled to claim workers’ compensation benefits and bring a third-party civil claim against the company that manufactured or supplied the defective equipment. Damages in a third-party product liability claim may include:

  • Cost of past and future medical treatment
  • Lost earnings and loss of future earnings
  • Pain and suffering
  • Emotional distress
  • Loss of enjoyment of life

A third-party claim could result in greater financial compensation than a workers’ compensation claim alone, such as noneconomic damages. If someone other than your employer is responsible for your defective safety equipment injury, you may be able to file both types of claims for maximum compensation.

denver defective safety equipment attorney

Types of Claims Available to Injured Workers in Denver

If you or a loved one has been hurt by defective safety equipment in Denver, multiple legal options may be available to you. The best thing you can do is to consult with an attorney at The Fang Law Firm to discuss all of your options in detail and explore the path that is most suited for your particular case.

Your options may include one or more of the following types of claims:

  • Workers’ compensation claim: a no-fault insurance claim that can pay for about two-thirds of an injured worker’s lost wages, disability costs, medical bills and death benefits without requiring proof of an employer’s negligence. All Colorado employers are required to maintain workers’ comp insurance for all of their employees, with a few exceptions.
  • Strict product liability claim: if the safety equipment contained a design, manufacturing or marketing defect and caused your injury, the strict liability doctrine may apply to your product liability case. This doctrine allows an injured consumer to collect damages against a manufacturing company without requiring proof of negligence.
  • Negligence claim: if one or more parties were negligent and this resulted in the defective piece of safety equipment injuring you, the negligent party may be held liable for your damages. You may have grounds to file this type of lawsuit against your employer, a contractor, a product manufacturer, a coworker or another party.
  • Breach of warranty claim: if the manufacturer of the defective piece of equipment breached or violated a warranty (a promise or guarantee given to consumers), you may have grounds to file a claim based on this legal doctrine. A breach of warranty gives an injured consumer the right to file a product liability claim.
  • Retaliation claim: if you complained about a dangerous, broken or defective piece of safety equipment in your workplace only to be demoted, fired or punished in some way by your employer, you may be able to file a retaliation claim in addition to your original injury case. Retaliation by an employer for reporting safety violations is against the law.

Our Denver defective safety equipment lawyers will carefully assess your defective safety equipment claim to identify all of your legal options moving forward. We have years of experience handling all types of worker injury cases and can help you choose the right type of claim or claims for your unique situation. We will help you seek compensation from all available legal outlets.

Types of Evidence to Prove a Defective Safety Equipment Case

When you file a personal injury claim, you become the plaintiff. In the civil justice system, the plaintiff bears the burden of proof. The evidentiary standard is a “preponderance of the evidence,” or more likely to be true than not true. You or your personal injury lawyer will need to present compelling evidence to demonstrate that the equipment in question was defective and that the defect caused your injuries.

Evidence to support a defective safety equipment case may include:

  • The defective piece of safety equipment itself
  • Physical evidence from the scene of the accident
  • Documentation related to the equipment, such as manuals and warnings
  • Product inspections and safety testing results
  • Product recall notices or complaints
  • Photograph and video documentation
  • Employer maintenance records
  • Testimony from accident eyewitnesses
  • Medical records documenting injuries
  • Expert testimony and accident reconstruction

Certain types of cases, such as workers’ compensation claims and strict product liability claims, do not require evidence of the defendant’s negligence. However, evidence to prove your losses will still be necessary. This may include your medical bills and property damage repair estimates. In other cases, your attorney will need to prove that the defendant acted with negligence, recklessness or malice and that this caused your injury.

What Is the Time Limit for Filing a Claim in Denver?

In Colorado, certain statutes impose time limits for filing civil lawsuits. The general deadline for a personal injury claim in Colorado is two years under Colorado Revised Statutes Section 13-80-102, which states:

13-80-102. General limitation of actions – two years. (1) The following civil actions, regardless of the theory upon which suit is brought, or against whom suit is brought, shall be commenced within two years after the cause of action accrues, and not thereafter:

(a) Tort actions, including but not limited to actions for negligence, trespass, malicious abuse of process, malicious prosecution, outrageous conduct, interference with relationships, and tortious breach of contract.

However, if a claim involves a motor vehicle accident, the statute of limitation is extended to three years. Other circumstances can also extend or shorten your deadline to file a defective safety equipment claim in Denver. It is critical to contact an attorney as soon as possible to avoid missing your time limit.

Contact Us Today

If you been hurt on the job because defective safety equipment failed, contact us. Our Denver personal injury attorneys want to help. We handle all our cases on a contingency-fee basis, therefore, you do not pay us any legal fees until we recover compensation for you.

We offer free initial case consultations, where you can tell us your work injury story and receive personalized legal advice at no cost or obligation. Call (720) 379-6363 to speak to an attorney today.