Backhoe Tips Over, Severely Injures Worker

Joseph O'Neill

Written by
— Updated on December 18, 2017

Construction Expert WitnessThis case takes place in Pennsylvania and involves an individual who was injured when the backhoe he was operating tipped over on an incline at a work site. Allegedly, the general contractor was using the machine in a reckless manner, and had not taken sufficient precautions to secure the machine on the incline before use. The operator of the backhoe sustained brain trauma and injuries to his back, leg, and neck. It is alleged that the foreman of the construction site failed to abide by regulations that mandated the safe use of this particular piece of equipment.

Question(s) For Expert Witness

  • 1. Please describe your experience operating heavy machinery.
  • 2. Please describe your experience as a foreman/supervisor for a work site, similar to the one in question.
  • 3. Are you familiar with safety procedures for backhoes?
  • 4. Can you speak to the contractual agreements between general contractors and subcontractors?
  • 5. Have you ever managed a site where a backhoe has tipped over?

Expert Witness Response E-009084

As a civil engineer my expertise is in directing, managing and supervising the use of heavy machinery. While working for Elliott Building Group as the vice-president of land development, my responsibilities included the contracting, managing and supervising of site contractors. The preparation of housing site required the movement of tens of thousands of cubic yards of dirt. This responsibility required the knowledge of OSHA and the adherence to the site safety manual. I am familiar with the safety procedures for loading dump trucks and backhoe use. This knowledge is required of civil engineers involved with calculating earthwork and transportation of site materials. I am able to speak to the contractual agreements between general contractors and subcontractors. While this is often discussed in the terms of the contract, OSHA also speaks to multi-employer work sites. I have not managed a site where a backhoe has tipped over from being improperly stabilized.

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