What to Do if Injured While Walking By a Construction Site

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Key Takeaways:

  • You can file a lawsuit for being injured by a construction site as a pedestrian.
  • Your suit can claim both economic and non-economic damages.
  • New York law specifically covers passersby injuries from construction sites.
  • Hiring a Buffalo personal injury lawyer can help you create a strong case for compensation.

Construction seemingly occurs all the time throughout Buffalo to the point where if you are going for a walk in town, you will have a tough time avoiding it. While you are generally safe walking by a construction site, there are still dangers of which to be aware. Debris, equipment, and other objects can fall from a construction site and land on you if you happen to be walking by.

It is no secret that construction sites are dangerous for workers, and it is important to note that they are dangerous for people passing by as well. Even tripping over an uneven surface in front of a construction site can still be the fault of the construction company. You deserve compensation if you have suffered injuries from the negligence surrounding a construction site. Learn about the risks of construction sites, and discover how The Coppola Firm can help you make your personal injury case and fight for compensation.

Common Types of Pedestrian Injuries at Construction Sites

Injuries at New York construction sites come in many forms, so it is important to be on the lookout for any of the following when walking near a construction area.

  • Falling debris
  • Exposure to dangerous chemicals
  • Exposure to live wires/electrocution
  • Motor vehicle and heavy machinery accidents
  • Missing safety warnings at the job site
  • Faulty fencing
  • Concrete injuries

Can I File a Claim if I Was Injured at a Construction Site as a Pedestrian?

Yes, you can file a claim if you were injured at a construction site as a pedestrian. The claim is a personal injury claim based on premises liability law. What matters is determining who is liable for any injuries you suffered, and a lawyer can help in that regard.

Who is Legally Responsible for Pedestrian Construction Accidents in New York?

Ultimately, it is likely that a construction site owner or general contractor is legally responsible for any accident you suffer as a pedestrian walking by. This is due to three major provisions in the New York Labor Law.

Section 200 states that construction site owners and contractors have a duty of care to uphold for both workers and pedestrians. They are liable if they fail to maintain safe conditions and someone gets injured because of it.

Because of this law, quite a few different entities could ultimately be liable for your injuries in a construction site accident. A New York personal injury lawyer can help you pinpoint the party or parties responsible. The following are among the most common.

  • Construction workers
  • Construction companies
  • Contractors and subcontractors
  • Property owners
  • Third-party companies
  • Manufacturers of construction vehicles/heavy equipment

What Damages Can I Sue For After a Construction Injury?

In the wake of a construction injury, you can sue for both economic and non-economic damages. Economic damages include the following:

  • Medical bills
  • Lost wages
  • Property damage

Non-economic damages can include the following:

  • Pain and suffering
  • PTSD
  • Loss of companionship from a wrongful death

What to Do Immediately After a Pedestrian Construction Site Injury

  1. Seek medical attention: The most important thing to do after any kind of injury is get the medical attention you need. Your safety and health are paramount regardless of the circumstances of the accident.
  2. Gather evidence: If you can physically do so, take photographs of the scene and gather as much evidence as possible.
  3. Identify construction company: Construction site exteriors tend to have information about the company responsible. Take note of the name of the company if you can.
  4. Hire an attorney: You will want an attorney on your side as soon as possible to help with the process every step of the way.

How to Prove Liability in a Pedestrian Construction Accident

Construction zone sign

To demonstrate liability, you will need to complete four steps in your case.

  1. Demonstrate a duty of care: The liable party must be shown to have a duty of care to you during their construction work, such as the expectation that walkways surrounding construction zones are clear of debris.
  2. Demonstrate their violation of that duty: You will have to show how their actions violated that duty of care.
  3. Demonstrate violation led to the accident: The breach of their duty must directly lead to the accident.
  4. Demonstrate the accident caused your injury: Finally, you must show that your injuries result from the accident you suffered.

Several pieces of evidence can be used to support your case, including the following.

  • A personal account
  • Witness accounts
  • Photographs
  • A police report

Do I Need a Lawyer For a Construction Accident Lawsuit?

You are not required to hire a lawyer for a New York construction accident lawsuit, but having one will help significantly. A lawsuit of any kind will be complicated, and one that goes up against a big company will likely face serious opposition. Construction companies, like other large companies, will have their own lawyers, usually hired by their insurance company. By having a lawyer on your side, you will be better equipped to make your case with their legal advice.

Why Clients Partner with The Coppola Firm

When you work with The Coppola Firm, you can enjoy custom solutions designed to fit the unique circumstances of your individual case. With our years of experience, our law firm has the know-how to address your legal issues with a commitment that has served so many in the past. Take a closer look at what our previous clients had to say.


“David Goodman went above and beyond to guide me through my case. I was blessed to have his knowledge and expertise. He took away my anxiety of going through such a traumatic experience. There are not enough words to express my gratitude.” — Lisa R.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is a Pedestrian Construction Accident Worth?

The value of your claim will depend on how serious your injuries are. Remember, compensation is meant to reimburse you for damages suffered. The more damages you suffered, such as serious injuries, traumatic brain injuries, and medical expenses, the greater your potential compensation will be. Having a lawyer will make it more likely that you get greater compensation compared to pursuing compensation claims alone.

How Long Do I Have to File a Construction Accident Claim in New York?

The statute of limitations for personal injury claims in New York is three years from the date of the accident, and construction site accidents usually enjoy no special exception to that rule.

How Much Does a Construction Accident Lawyer Cost?

Initially, a Buffalo, New York construction accident attorney at The Coppola Firm does not cost you anything. If you hire us, we will work for you on a contingency fee basis, and you will only have to pay when you recover money. Even then, it will be just a percentage of your settlement. If you do not win your lawsuit, you will not have to pay your personal injury attorneys anything.

Build Your Case on a Solid Foundation With The Coppola Firm

At The Coppola Firm, you can confidently pursue your personal injury case knowing that our personal injury lawyers have decades of collective experience fighting for New York’s injured. Get in touch with our legal team today by calling 716-839-9700 or by filling out our online contact form for a free consultation and a free case evaluation.

Lisa Coppola

Written by Lisa Coppola

Founder of The Coppola Firm

Lisa A. Coppola, Esq. understands the challenges her clients face, whether they’re starting a new business, taking their existing operations in a new direction, or facing a claim or threat.

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