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Employee dies in accident; workers' compensation available?

Workplace accidents in Colorado Springs and throughout the state are not necessarily uncommon, but their results can be tragic. An employee injured at the workplace may be unable to work again for a significant amount of time, and in some cases, the accident may even result in the tragic passing away of the employee. Fortunately, when this happens, workers' compensation is often available to the employee, or in the event of a death, the family of the employee.

Tragically, one worked was killed last year in a construction accident that happened in August near Aspen Highlands, Colorado. A 39-year-old worker's safety cord became tangled in a construction drill. That pulled him into a spinning augur, which other employees were unable to stop before the man was killed.

Most recently, officials with the federal government fined the employee's company $12,000 in connection with the incident. The fine was for two violations concerning an improper anchor point and an emergency shut-off button. However, as the family mourns, the fine may seem unduly small in comparison to the magnitude of their loss.

Workers' compensation benefits, though, may be available. When a Colorado employee is injured on the job, he or she is often entitled to receive the benefits in order to cover their medical expenses. The benefits can also go toward the lost wages of the worker who may be unable to work for some time due to the injury. In this case, those benefits may still be available to the surviving family members of the 39-year-old man, and the benefits may be able to compensate them for funeral expenses and for any lost wages.

Source: Claims Journal, "Company Fined Over Worker Death in Colorado," Feb. 17, 2012

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