When construction projects are to be carried out on rough terrain, it is the responsibility of the employer to assess and evaluate the area to identify risks and address potential hazards. Workers must be made aware of dangerous areas, such as the presence of ditches, in areas where crane operators have to work. Furthermore, employers must provide safety gear. Disregard of safety regulations can result in employees being injured at work or, worse, dying because of a workplace accident.
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration recently completed an investigation into a fatal May workplace accident in another state. Investigators determined that safety violations by the company caused the death of a worker from Colorado. It was reported that the man died within 10 days of starting the job on the construction site. He was the operator of a rough-terrain crane that weighed 90 tons.
The accident report states that the crane overturned after slipping into a ditch. The massive machine rolled down an embankment, crushing the 40-year-old crane operator. OSHA issued the construction company with a serious safety violation for neglecting to ensure that the operator wore a safety restraint.
As with all workers who have lost their lives after being injured at work, the surviving family members of this Colorado man may be entitled to pursue workers’ compensation benefits. The insurance system provides death benefits for the covered dependents of those who died under such circumstances. Along with end-of-life expenses, the benefits typically cover lost wages in the form of a financial package that is based on the deceased worker’s last wage level to cover the survivors’ living costs and other financial obligations.
Source: nebraskaradionetwork.com, “OSHA fines N. Dakota company in wake of fatal Nebraska accident”, Brent Martin, Aug. 17, 2015