Colorado has many structures still standing that were built a long time ago. Many of these structures are owned by the state or local governments, but these buildings and structures often need to be repaired. When the county or state brings in contractors and construction workers to clean these historical buildings, it is important that the buildings have been checked for any safety issues. When they are not, an employee could be seriously, if not fatally, injured.
Though this story happened outside of Colorado, it is not unimaginable that the same thing could have happened here. Two years ago, a now-44 year-old man was hired to clean an historic water storage tank. He, along with three other employees had been on top of the tank when the wooden deck upon which he was standing collapsed. The man plummeted approximately 50 feet, seriously injuring his back, spine, ribs and lung.
The man was hospitalized for weeks and underwent intensive care for his injuries. Eventually, he was released, but it is unknown if he has completely healed from such a traumatic injury. Even if he has and even if he has returned to work, it is unlikely that the man was getting paid during the time he was in the hospital. Had this happened in Colorado, he would likely have filed for workers’ compensation.
Nearly everyone who is injured in a serious workplace accident is eligible for workers’ compensation. The funds help cover medical costs and lost wages during recovery. In some of the worst cases, workers’ compensation benefits can help cover living expenses following a disabling workplace injury. The workers’ compensation system can be difficult, however, so it is wise to work closely with an experienced back injury attorney.
Source: Yakima Herald-Republic, “Yakima County settles injury case for $1.15 million,” David Lester, Jan. 17, 2013
Please stop by our work-related back injuries web page to learn more about the workers’ compensation benefits available to injured employees.