There are many obvious risks associated with the use of cranes in construction. Firstly, there’s the height at which crane operators need to work and secondly, there is the weight and size of objects being moved by the crane. Unfortunately, even though there has been a massive focus on building site safety in recent years, crane accidents do sometimes happen. Importantly, if you have suffered injuries in a crane accident and the accident was caused by negligence, you could be eligible to make a crane accident claim for compensation.
Whether you’re a construction worker or a member of the public who has been injured by a crane, we could help you get the compensation you deserve. One of our team members will review your claim for free and offer legal advice if you call for a no-obligation consultation. If your case has a reasonable chance of success and one of our personal injury solicitors agrees to work for you, there won’t be any legal fees payable in advance as all crane accident claims are managed on a No Win No Fee basis.
To talk with a specialist about claiming for an injury caused by a crane, please call 0800 6524 881 today. Otherwise, please read on to find out more about the claims process.
Table of contents
- Am I Eligible To Make A Crane Accident Claim?
- Common Types Of Crane Accidents
- Common Injuries Seen In Crane Accident Claims
- Types Of Negligence That Can Lead To A Compensation Claim
- How Much Compensation For A Crane Accident Could I Claim?
- Evidence To Support A Crane Accident Claim
- Crane Accident Claim Time Limit
- Starting The Crane Accident Claims Process
Before we look at the types of crane accidents and injuries that could lead to an accident claim, let’s look at the checks our solicitors make before accepting a claim. To assess if you have a chance of being compensated, they’ll review whether:
- The defendant (the site operator or your employer) owed you a duty of care; and
- An act of negligence by the defendant caused a crane accident to occur; and
- You sustained injuries as a direct result of that accident.
Please contact our claims advisors if you’d like to check your eligibility right away.
Generally, anywhere a crane is used, there will be a law in place to protect builders and members of the public. This is where the phrase duty of care comes from. For crane accident claims, any of the following laws may be relevant:
- The Lifting Operations and Lifting Equipment Regulations 1998.
- The Health and Safety at Work Act 1974.
- Construction (Design and Management) Regulations 2015.
- Building Safety Act 2022.
Before your claim is taken on, your solicitor will look at which law is relevant to your case so this is not something you really need to worry about. However, you can improve your chances of winning compensation for crane-related injuries by collecting evidence. We’ll explain more about this later on.
Any type of crane accident that results in an injury could lead to a compensation claim. Some of the most common types of crane accidents include:
- Unintentional drops. These can occur if the load isn’t secured properly or is too heavy. Drops can also occur because of operator error.
- Collapses. If a crane is overloaded, poorly maintained or used incorrectly. When a crane collapses, it can put the operator and anybody in the vicinity in great danger.
- Tip-overs. If a load that is too heavy for the crane is lifted, it can cause the whole crane to tip over.
- Swings. A crane can swing dangerously in high winds. This can result in the crane’s boom or load striking other buildings, workers or vehicles in the area.
It is not difficult to see the wide range of potential injuries which could occur as a consequence of a crane accident. Ultimately, bearing in mind the great heights and the constant dangers associated with heavy lifting with huge cranes there can sometimes be fatalities. Some of the more common injuries seen in crane accident claims include:
- Crush injuries.
- Spinal injuries.
- General cuts and lacerations.
Again, the majority of crane accident claims will involve construction workers. However, injuries to members of the public do sometimes occur when loads are dropped or cranes collapse in public areas.
Falling from a height at work or being struck by falling objects can often be a traumatic experience. That may even be the case in the event of near misses. Importantly, a crane accident claim could include compensation to cover:
- Depression relating to your injuries.
- Anxiety and distress.
- Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).
- Panic attacks, flashbacks or fear for your life.
If you work with one of our solicitors, they’ll use medical professionals to help identify exactly how you’re suffering from a psychological injury and try to secure the maximum compensation possible.
As per the criteria set out in the first section, you can only claim compensation for a crane accident if it was caused by negligence. Some examples of this include:
- Where the crane operator is not trained or qualified properly.
- If the load being lifted is too heavy for the crane.
- Where the operator is not familiar with the type of crane they’re using or its limitations.
- If the area around the crane was not clear of obstacles.
- If the crane was not properly inspected, maintained or used according to the manufacturer’s instructions.
- Where the crane operator was working alone and without signalling from the ground.
- If the crane operator was under the influence of alcohol or drugs at the time of the accident.
If you have been injured at work whilst using a crane or have been injured whilst passing a building site, please get in touch for a free review of your claim.
If your crane accident claim is won, it could compensate you for:
- Physical and mental pain and suffering.
- Any loss of enjoyment of your normal family and social activities or hobbies.
- Private remedial medical treatment including physiotherapy.
- The cost of a carer.
- Lost earnings (including future reductions in pay linked to your injuries).
- Property replacement costs (for damaged clothing, phones and jewellery for example).
- Travel expenses.
- Home adaptations to help you deal with any long-term disability.
As well as claiming for the immediate impact of your injuries, your solicitor will assess how you might be affected in the future. This is important as you can only successfully claim compensation for the crane accident once. As part of this, your solicitor will arrange an independent medical assessment.
During your meeting, a specialist will review your medical records, examine your injuries and learn how you’ve been affected by them and the crane accident as a whole. The report that follows the meeting will explain your prognosis and be used to determine how much compensation you’ll claim.
Although we can’t put an exact figure on how much you might receive for crane-related injuries, our compensation calculator can give you some indication:
As you might expect, these amounts are graded by the severity of your injury. Your solicitor will offer a more personalised compensation estimate after your claim has been reviewed in detail.
It is important to prove how you were injured by a crane accident, who was to blame and how you’ve suffered as a result. The types of evidence that could help with this include:
- CCTV footage. You should request any on-site footage as soon as possible as it will usually be deleted within weeks.
- Witness statements. Your solicitor might ask colleagues or others who saw the crane accident to provide a statement of what happened.
- Medical records. It’s important to seek proper medical treatment for any crane-related injuries. Your medical records from the hospital could help to prove your diagnosis.
- Accident reports. Some building site accidents must be reported to the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) and all injuries should be recorded locally. A copy of any type of accident report can help to prove when and where you were injured.
- Photographs. Taking pictures of the accident scene can help in the process of making a crane accident claim. Photographs of any visible injuries may also help to prove the extent of your suffering.
Finally, as you could be compensated for any costs or losses linked to your injuries (special damages), you should keep any relevant receipts, bank statements or wage slips to support your case.
If you are injured during a crane accident, a 3-year time limit applies for accidents at work and personal injury claims. In most cases, this will begin from the date of the accident. However, if you were incapacitated after the accident i.e. you were in a coma, the limitation period would begin from when you became aware of your injuries.
To help with any immediate costs linked to your injuries, your solicitor may be able to secure interim payments before the claim is finalised if the defendant has accepted liability for the crane accident. For this reason, it’s usually a good idea to begin the crane accident claims process sooner rather than later. By doing so, interim payments could help cover any lost income or the cost of private medical treatment.
Please call us on 0800 6524 881 if you’d like to find out if you’re eligible to claim compensation for a crane accident.
Whatever happens, you’ll receive free legal advice and you could be partnered with one of our specialist personal injury solicitors. If they agree to represent you, you’ll benefit from their No Win No Fee service.
Our live chat advisors are on hand if you have anything else to ask about the process of making a crane accident claim.