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Worker suffers severe construction injuries in ladder fall

One of the most common causes of workplace injuries in Colorado and other states is occupational falls. In the construction industry, it is not only scaffold structures that pose fall hazards as falls from ladders contribute significantly to the numbers of construction injuries. Regardless of the height from which a worker falls, injuries suffered from falling off a ladder can be severe but are deemed preventable.

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration is investigating an incident in which a 31-year-old worker fell from a ladder in another state. The incident reportedly occurred on a recent Wednesday morning at a site at which a soy crush plant is under construction. OSHA reported that the worker suffered severe injuries when he fell about 10 feet.

The man was hospitalized for treatment of his injuries. OSHA investigators will pay particular attention to the company's compliance with safety protocols. According to prescribed regulations, company owners must ensure ladder safety and provide appropriate fall protection. Proper training must also be provided to inform workers of the potential fall hazards and the correct use of the personal protection equipment.

Construction injuries caused by a fall can have life-altering consequences that may jeopardize a worker's ability to return to work for some time -- if at all. Medical expenses and lost income can cause high levels of stress and anxiety when a worker is concerned about the welfare of his or her family. Financial relief can be pursued by filing benefits claims with the Colorado workers' compensation insurance program. In addition to medical costs and lost wages, the insurance system also makes allowances for workers who have suffered temporary or permanent disabilities in workplace accidents.

Source: nebraska.tv, "OSHA to Investigate Worker's Fall at Hastings Construction Site", Jordan Onwiler, Nov. 19, 2015

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