Fatal workplace accidents nationwide claimed the lives of 4,386 workers in 2014. These were incidents occurring in the private industry, and 899 of those deaths occurred in the construction industry. Statistics show that the most prominent causes were work-related vehicle accidents, falls and electrocution. These were followed by fatal occupational injuries caused when workers were struck by objects or being crushed between equipment.
Two construction companies in Colorado at which recent fatalities occurred will be subject to inspections by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration. After a two-year period of no fatalities in Larimer County, these two deaths were recorded in the past four months. In the first incident, a 31-year-old man from Fort Collins fell through a skylight while he was doing electrical work on a commercial building’s flat roof. After the 24-foot fall, he died from traumatic brain injury.
Then, on Sept. 6, an employee of a steel company was pierced by a steel beam when he moved away from his control panel. The drilling machine’s automatic movement as it moves through the programmed cycle crushed him against the conveyor. The victim was a 48-year-old father and husband who was declared dead later on the same day.
Both the injuries that caused these two deaths fall in the list of most-cited fatal occupational injuries listed above. While the statistics should create more compliance with workplace safety, some employers continue to disregard the health and safety of their employees. The surviving family members of the deceased workers will have to adjust to life without their loved ones. Fortunately, their financial burdens may be eased by the death benefits that can be claimed from the Colorado workers’ compensation insurance system.
Source: coloradoan.com, “OSHA investigating two Larimer workplace deaths“, Jason Pohl, Sept. 12, 2016