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Bucket trucks, or trucks containing aerial lift devices, are a common source of work-related injuries and even death. While bucket trucks are an invaluable tool in many professions, they also introduce many potential dangers to the workplace, including:
- Electrical shock danger from workers being exposed to high voltage lines
- Overturning, as the vehicles are top-heavy
- Boom failure and other serious equipment malfunction
These and other bucket truck-related accidents may be attributable to the following causes:
- Faulty product design
- Poor maintenance
- Improper use
- Poor training or lack of training
How Bucket Truck Accidents Happen
While indispensable for many types of work, bucket trucks carry with them a number of inherent dangers involving the design of the trucks and the type of work for which they are generally used. Most bucket truck injuries occur as a result of the boom being moved improperly, whether by operator error or equipment malfunction. Regardless of the cause, bucket truck accidents can result in falls, electrocution, and rollovers.
Common causes of bucket truck accidents include:
- Improperly designed and maintained booms
- Unsafe use, including positioning the vehicle on an incline
- Overriding of safety mechanisms
Whether caused by improper design, maintenance, or use, unbalanced bucket trucks can subject operators and bystanders to serious personal injury or death.
Who Is Responsible for Bucket Truck Accidents?
Depending on the cause and nature of the accident, any of a number of parties may be responsible for a bucket truck accident. In every case, it is essential that the accident be thoroughly and objectively investigated as soon as possible in order to determine the potential causes and responsible parties.
Those responsible for bucket truck accidents may include:
- Manufacturers and suppliers: Bucket trucks should be designed to provide a stable bucket from which operators can work. In some cases, an error in the manufacturing process may be responsible for the instability of the boom or lack of other appropriate safety features.
- Owners: Bucket trucks require regular maintenance to ensure that all safety features are functioning properly. Operators must also be adequately trained in the proper and safe use of the equipment.
- Employers: Employers may be responsible for requiring employees to continue using a bucket truck with knowledge that the equipment is dangerous and that injury from its use is substantially certain to occur.
- Premises owners and others: Owners of business premises and others who actively participate in work activities utilizing a dangerous bucket truck may be responsible for injuries that occur.
If you or someone you care about has been injured in a bucket truck accident, contact experienced personal injury attorney Robert W. Kerpsack online or by calling our office in Columbus at (614) 766-2000 to begin building your case. The initial consultation is free.