The construction industry is notoriously dangerous. As a society, we have chosen to take steps to reduce the risks associated with this profession. This includes the use of organizations like the United States Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA).
OSHA often runs awareness and education campaigns as part of the agency’s efforts to reduce the risk of construction accidents. One such campaign focuses on four specific types of accidents: falls, struck-by incidents, electrocutions and caught-in, caught-between accidents.
Of these four, one accident type has increased at alarming rates.
Analysis of fatal constructions accidents
The Center for Construction Research and Training conducted a review of fatal construction accidents. The group’s research uncovered a disturbing trend: deaths due to caught-in, caught-between accidents in the construction industry are growing at an alarming rate. These accidents include those involving a worker getting caught or crushed in the collapse of materials, hit by a falling object or struck by a vehicle while in a construction work zone.
The number of fatalities due to this specific type of construction accident grew 33 percent between 2011 and 2015.
Remedies for construction accident victims
Remedies are available for injured construction workers and families who lose a loved one due to a fatal construction accident. Victims often have two forms of relief: government sanctions and civil suits.
Government sanctions do not directly benefit the victim. However, a citation and fine by OSHA can serve to punish a negligent employer and deter future negligence. This can ultimately make the work place safer for others.
Civil suits can directly benefit the victim or victim’s loved ones. A successful claim can lead to monetary awards to cover the costs that result from the accident. This can include medical bills and lost wages as well as additional punitive awards designed specifically to punish a particularly negligent employer. If you are the victim of this type of accident, it is wise to contact an attorney to review your case and discuss your options.