Construction workers and their families should understand the risks and how to get help when on-the-job accidents occur.
An automotive dealership on Staten Island was the site of yet another construction worker death recently. A story on Staten Island Live reported that a man became trapped beneath debris after a portion of the building collapsed on him. The dealership was under demolition at the time. The worker was transported to Richmond University Medical Center in West Brighton where he died.
Stories like this are sadly not uncommon in the construction industry. An injured worker was struck in the head by a piece of falling metal on the site of the Ocean Breeze Track and Field Complex. The Staten Island Live story indicated he was taken to a nearby hospital for treatment. In Brooklyn, another worker fell to his death from the sixth floor of a building under construction in Brighton Beach according to the New York Daily News.
The fatal four
The Occupational Safety Health Administration acknowledges the dangers inherent in the construction industry. It highlights the four most common causes of death to employees on construction sites. Known as the fatal four, these factors contributed to more than 57 percent of all construction worker deaths in 2013. Specific data shows the following for that year.
- A total of 794 construction workers died.
- Falls were attributed to 294 of the deaths.
- Being struck by objects caused 82 of the deaths.
- Electrocution was the cause of 71 fatalities.
- Another 21 workers died after becoming trapped.
The United States Bureau of Labor Statistics for 2012 paint the picture of risk for workers in the state of New York. In that year, 202 workplace fatalities were recorded in New York. Of those, 38 were in the construction sector. A total of 22 of those 38 fatalities were caused by trips, slips or falls. Contact with objects such as being struck caused another five deaths. Exposure to substances that are harmful led to the death of six workers. Five more people perished in accidents involving transportation on construction sites.
Options for victims
Workers' compensation benefits are important for any injured worker or family member of a worker that has died in a job-related accident. Filing for workers' compensation can be a long and difficult process with many steps involved.
People in need of this assistance should talk to an attorney with experience in filing these claims. The right professional input can be very helpful in securing the appropriate level of compensation during a difficult time.
Keywords: accident, construction, injury, job