This past December, Chicago-based developer Core Spaces submitted a proposal to the Midtown Development Review Committee (DRC) to bring its “Hub on Campus” product to Atlanta, which would provide off-campus housing to Georgia Tech students. The proposed 20-story tower would be located at 960 Spring Street, just south of the intersection between Spring and 10th, currently the site of the Opium Atlanta nightclub. Core has similar projects in other college towns that serve universities such as the University of Kentucky, University of Florida, and Michigan State University.
Core’s “Hub on Campus” project would feature 5,600 square feet of ground level retail space beneath the 20-story tower, which would include 278 student housing units and approximately 800 beds. The new residential project would be a short walk from the Midtown MARTA station and be situated across the street from the University House and The Mark – two other student housing developments. The DRC gave its overall blessing to the project but asked for some tweaks to help enhance aesthetics and pedestrian connectivity. Revisions to the project are expected to be submitted sometime in 2020.
Midtown Atlanta Construction Site Accident Risks
Once the project is complete, the “Hub on Campus” will provide much-needed additional housing for students at Georgia Tech. It will also create several permanent jobs for those working in the retail shops, and hundreds of temporary jobs for construction workers and those in related fields while the tower is being built. All of this is good for Atlanta’s economy, but there are some potential hazards to be aware of as well.
Working in construction is one of the most dangerous occupations, and if something goes wrong, it can result in serious and sometimes fatal injuries. For this reason, is incumbent upon project developers to follow all government regulations and implement best safety practices to help ensure that their workers stay safe. Unfortunately, this does not always happen.
OSHA performs inspections on various construction sites, and they have listed some of the top safety violations that occur. These include violations in the areas of:
- Fall protection;
- Machinery and machine guarding;
- Eye and face protection;
- Hazard communication;
- Hazardous energy control;
- Powered industrial trucks;
- Respiratory protection.
On average, 14 American workers are killed on the job every day, and according to OSHA, more than one out of every five of these fatalities is construction related. Construction workers have to perform labor intensive tasks in a fast-paced environment, and they have to rely heavily on strong organization, supervision, and teamwork in order for everyone to do their jobs safely.
In Atlanta, things can be even more strenuous for workers because of our hot and humid climate during the summer combined with the fact that those in this industry are often asked to work lots of overtime to keep on schedule. If a developer is not doing what they are supposed to do to ensure workplace safety, there is a much greater risk of construction site accidents.
Who is Responsible for a Fulton County Construction Site Accident?
When a construction worker from the “Hub on Campus” project or another Atlanta area construction site gets injured, it can take a major physical, emotional, and financial toll on everyone involved. Medical bills pile up, and when a primary breadwinner misses work for an extended period of time, finances start to get very tight. This can cause a lot of anxiety and unrest for the entire household not knowing when life can return to normal. Sadly, in cases when there is a permanent injury or fatality, things will never get back to normal again.
Injured construction workers are usually eligible for workers’ compensation benefits from their employer, but these benefits only go so far. Workers’ comp only reimburses you for necessary medical expenses, a percentage of lost wages, and a few other things. Unfortunately, they do nothing to help injured workers deal with the enormous pain and suffering they have to go through, the anxiety and emotional distress caused by the injury, or the loss of their ability to participate in activities they once enjoyed.
There is some potential good news in all of this, however. Although an injured worker is generally barred from filing a personal injury lawsuit against his/her employer, it may be possible to bring a claim against an outside party who might have been responsible for the construction site accident.
This would allow the injured worker to recover damages not only for direct economic losses such as medical bills and lost earnings, but also for intangibles such as pain-and-suffering. In Georgia, you can even recover damages if you are partially at fault for an accident, as long as the percentage of fault you share does not exceed 49%.
Some possible parties that could share responsibility for a construction site accident include:
- Architects and engineers;
- Construction project managers;
- General contractors;
- Structural iron and steel workers;
- Drivers of other vehicles who cause accidents;
- Property owners;
- Defective or dangerous product designers, manufacturers, or distributors.
Construction accident cases are very seldom simple and straightforward. Typically, there are numerous contributing factors, and a thorough investigation is needed to get to the root of what happened and identify everything that played a role in causing the accident. In order to dramatically increase your chances of a favorable outcome with your claim, it is highly recommended that you work with attorneys who have extensive experience successfully pursuing these types of cases, and that you retain strong legal counsel as soon as possible.
No one likes to own up to being at fault when significant monetary damages are at stake, and important facts and pieces of evidence have a tendency to disappear over time. The sooner you get an attorney involved, the sooner they can go to work for you to uncover, protect and preserve the critical evidence needed to help substantiate your claim and ensure that you are able to recover maximum compensation.
Suffered a Construction Site Injury in Midtown Atlanta? Contact Bailey, Javins, & Carter, L.C. for Assistance
If you or someone close to you got hurt while working on the “Hub on Campus” project or at any other construction site in Fulton County, get in touch with Bailey, Javins & Carter, L.C. right away for legal help. We will meet with you to thoroughly review your case and advise you of your legal rights and options, so you can make the most informed decision on how you wish to proceed.
Message us online or call our Atlanta office today at (678) 981-5370 to schedule a free consultation and case assessment with one of our experienced attorneys.