Construction Safety Expert Comments on Dangerous Site Conditions


Construction Expert Witness This case involves a roofer who was installing CertainTeed shingles on a multi-unit apartment complex. On the day of the incident in question, the Plaintiff fell several feet from the roof while he was installing the shingles, where he landed on a pallet of construction materials. The Defendant residential construction company was supposed to set up a harness system that would have allowed the roofers to tie on to anchor points on the roof as a means of fall prevention, however no such system was in place at the time of the accident. Despite this, there were no warnings provided to the workers, and no one was notified about the unfinished safety system. As a result of his fall, the Plaintiff suffered a number of significant injuries, including broken bones, a concussion, and spinal cord damage. As a result of the accident, the Plaintiff will no longer be able to work, and will require a lifetime of ongoing care.

Question(s) For Expert Witness

  • 1. Please discuss your background in setting safety standards in a construction setting.
  • 2. Are there measures in place to notify a worker of any dangerous conditions?
  • 3. What could have been implemented to avoid the accident?

Expert Witness Response E-007339

I have nearly 20 years of experience in construction, at least 15 of which was focused on safety specifically. I am responsible for the implementation of numerous standards and regulation in my construction work, including environmental health and safety, hasps and safety lock-out systems, and others. While there may not be direct regulatory authorities governing the communication of conditions, best management practices (BMPs) on communicating hazards have become an industry standard. From the facts presented, I believe that additional signage, temporary barricades, temporary fall protection, or simple communication could have been implemented to prevent the incident. Safety standards and building codes require adequate fall protection and notice of dangerous conditions if such protection has not been established. This kind of work should not be undertaken without adequate fall protection in place.

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