Can I Sue if I am Injured in a Crane Accident?

Cranes are indispensable, heavy-duty machines found on almost every major construction site. They can lift, lower and move loads weighing thousands of pounds to heights over 100 feet. While cranes greatly improve productivity and safety by mechanizing dangerous lifting, they also pose serious risks to workers if appropriate precautions fail or accidents occur due to negligence. This article examines the legal options available if someone is injured in a preventable crane accident.

What Laws Allow Lawsuits After Crane Accidents?

There are several legal grounds an injured person or grieving family member can pursue in court if negligence, oversight, faulty equipment or other problems caused or contributed to a crane accident. Personal injury and wrongful death lawsuits based on negligence and premises liability laws are most common. For negligence cases, an injured plaintiff needs to prove the crane operator or another responsible party acted carelessly or recklessly and failed to take reasonable safety precautions. 

Lawsuits against property owners can also be filed if the accident occurred on an unsafe site due to hazards the owner knew or should have known about. Cases against manufacturers are possible too if defective equipment, flawed safety features or poor crane design choices played a role.

Suing for Compensation and Accountability

By retaining an experienced crane accident attorney, injured victims can file lawsuits seeking compensation for damages such as medical bills, income lost from missing work, pain and suffering, permanent disabilities or impairment as well as other accident-related losses. Families who lost a loved one can sue for wrongful death. Settlements and court verdicts in these cases serve both compensate victims and hold the negligent companies and individuals accountable.

Steps to Take in Preparing a Lawsuit

After promptly getting needed medical care following any crane accident, an urgent priority is hiring a qualified crane expert witness. Reputable expert testimony is absolutely vital in these cases for establishing proper safety standards, proving violations, causation and liability issues. Other key steps include:

  • Gathering accident reports, inspection records, training documents, and other evidence
  • Documenting all accident injuries and damages
  • Identifying all potentially liable parties
  • Researching all viable legal claims and statutes
  • Assessing settlement valuation and options Proper case investigation and preparation takes significant time. Because strict statutes of limitations apply, prompt legal consultation after a crane accident is strongly advised.

Government Rules About Crane Safety

Extensive federal OSHA regulations in 29 CFR 1926, Subpart CC govern crane inspection, planning, operation certification and qualifications, assembly/disassembly, maintenance, rigging procedures and other aspects on construction sites along with parallel state occupational safety rules. When non-compliance with these safety codes play a role in causing or contributing to accidents, victims generally have a stronger negligence case.


Though crane accidents may seem like random chance, more often than not, they actually stem from preventable hazards, oversights, errors and/or equipment failures. With complex factors surrounding these incidents, assistance from legal and safety experts is invaluable. 

By promptly engaging knowledgeable personal injury counsel along with accredited crane experts after an incident, injured victims put themselves in the strongest position to prove liability, hold wrongdoers fully accountable and recover the maximum compensation they will desperately need to financially survive such catastrophic life-altering harm.