. .

Invest in your success.
JVRA helps lawyers win cases by providing critical information you can use to establish precedent, determine demand and win arguments.

ARTICLE ID 10117

$________ Worksite accident - contractor's employee injured due to negligence of subcontractor - multiple fractures - permanent disability.

HENNEPIN County, MINNESOTA

This was an action brought by the plaintiff carpenter’s foreman, age 35 at the time of the worksite accident out of which the subject lawsuit arose. The plaintiff contended that he suffered multiple injuries as a result of the negligence of the defendant subcontractor in failing to properly safeguard an opening in the roof of the project under construction.

On October 22, ________, the plaintiff carpenter’s foreman employed by Bor-Son Construction, picked up a piece of plywood he found plywood loose on a roof at the Edinborough Enclosed Public Park project. The plaintiff intended to use the roof as a large flat surface upon which to lay out a pattern for another roof which was going to be built nearby. He believed that the plywood was scrap and intended to move it out of the way and then dispose of it later. As he picked up the plywood, he stepped forward into a 5’ X 2’4" opening through the roof which was concealed by the plywood. He fell 33 feet onto a cement surface below.

Edinborough Enclosed Public Park project was a large project consisting of a high-rise, office and restaurant space and an enclosed park. The owner, the HRA of Edina, contracted directly with more than 30 different contractor’s. The plaintiff’s employer, Bor-Son Construction, held the contract to do the foundation and steel work. Bor-Son, in turn, subcontracted with the defendant Wells Concrete. The subcontract required Wells to install the roof over the swimming pool area of the park. The roof consisted of a number of pre-cast concrete roofing panels manufactured and installed by the defendant. The defendant Wells installed the roof during a four-day period late in August of ________, which was approximately two months prior to the subject accident. The roofing plan included an opening through the roof for mechanical heating/air conditioning equipment. The defendant precut the opening when it was installed as part of the roofing panels. It was the defendant’s practice to cover such openings with a piece of plywood during the time their crew was on the job. They did nothing to fasten the plywood down to the roof. It was also their practice to leave the plywood in place when they left the project. The plaintiffs alleged that the defendant violated both State and Federal OSHA requirements, which provides that such an opening must be protected by either guard rails or a cover which is secured against accident displacement. The plaintiffs further asserted that the requirements mandate that if a cover is used, it must be marked with a warning sign indicating that it is covering an opening. The plaintiffs additionally asserted that the defendant deviated from the industry standards (ANSI standards and standards developed by the Prestressed Concrete Institute), as well as industry-wide safety practices.

The plaintiff’s injuries consisted of multiple comminuted fractures of the left arm, elbow and pelvis. He was admitted to the Hennepin County Medical Center on Four separate occasions and underwent a total of ten surgeries on his arm and elbow. Medical expenses exceeded $________. The plaintiff was left with significant restriction of mobility and strength restrictions to his left arm and elbow. According to his treating physician, he has a 95% permanent disability of the left upper extremity and a 15% permanent disability of the pelvis and back.

The plaintiff returned to work approximately five and one-half months after the accident and worked approximately nine months, after which it became clear that he could no longer continue in the trades. In January of ________, the plaintiff enrolled at the Mankato State University and he was scheduled to graduate in the spring of ________ with an industrial arts teaching degree.

The defendant alleged that the plaintiff’s employer, Bor-Son Construction and the construction manager, Bor-Son Builders (a non-party) were both negligent in that they failed to inspect and/or rectify the hazard presented by the opening. The defendant additionally asserted that the plaintiff was contributorily negligent in failing to exercise due care while working on the roof. The plaintiff’s demand prior to trial was $________. The defendant’s highest offer was $________. The jury returned a verdict of $________, which was broken down as follows: $________ past lost earnings; $________ medical and re-hab expenses; $________ past pain, disability, disfigurement, embarrassment and emotional distress; and $________ to the plaintiff wife for loss of consortium. The jury apportioned liability as follows: 80% against the defendant Wells Concrete; 15% against the plaintiff’s employer; and 5% negligence on the part of the plaintiff.

To read the full article, please login to your account or purchase

5 ways to win with JVRA

JVRA gives you jurisdiction-specific, year-round insight into the strategies, arguments and tactics that win. Successful attorneys come to the table prepared and use JVRA to:

  1. Determine if a case is winnable and recovery amounts.
  2. Determine reasonable demand for a case early on.
  3. Support a settlement demand by establishing precedent.
  4. Research trial strategies, tactics and arguments.
  5. Defeat or support post-trial motions through past case histories.

Try JVRA for a day or a month, or sign up for our deluxe Litigation Support Plan and put the intelligence of JVRA to work for all of your clients. See our subscription plans.