Your loved ones are probably always sending you emails about construction workers who suffered serious falls or have been struck by debris on the job. Since you spend your life on work sites, it’s natural for them to want to warn you of potential dangers.

While any element of a construction site can be hazardous, there are several on-site machines that pose a daily threat to workers. For instance, hundreds of employees are injured every year by mechanical power presses—many of whom will lose a finger, hand, or arm as a result.

In a typical mechanical power press, tools or dies are mounted above a stationary bed or anvil containing a lower die. Materials are fed into the machine and the upper and lower dies compress together, making a formed work piece. The most common point at which construction power press injuries occur is when the dies separate in order to allow the work piece to be removed and a new work piece to be fed into the die.

Puncture wounds, shearing, and even amputations in power presses happen every day as a result of:

  • Disabled power cuts – Many presses have an auto-shut off mechanism that detects when arms and fingers have entered the die. These may be disabled for cleaning and maintenance, but also by companies hoping to increase productivity by allowing workers to clear jams without shutting down the machinery.
  • Removal of safety guards – Bars, guards and other devices may be disabled to allow insertion of irregularly-sized materials, to allow for better viewing of the operation, or simply to increase production.
  • Compromised controls – Presses often have two-hand trips to ensure both of a worker’s hands are free of the machine. However, these controls may be bypasses or tied together to allow one-handed operations of the press cycle.
  • Ill-adjusted protective equipment – Some safety devices, such as restraints and pullbacks, must be fitted to each operator of the device before work begins. Failure to adjust for height and weight can put the operator at risk of injury.
  • “Helping hand” injuries – Several workers have been injured by presses as they attempted to clear a jam or align parts in the die while a coworker accidentally activated the controls.

As a trusted disabled worker attorney, Manfred F. Ricciardelli, Jr. has helped countless injured employees get the maximum amount of compensation they need for medical bills and loss of income. View our case results to see how we have handled these cases in the past. If you know someone who has recently suffered a construction power press injury, please feel free to share this article with them via email or Facebook.

Need more information? Call our offices today at 877-360-0183 or click the link above to download our FREE report, What the Injured Worker Needs to Know: Your Workers Comp Guide.

Manfred Ricciardelli
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Morristown Workers' Compensation Lawyer