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California construction workers face constant danger

Working on a California construction site can be a dangerous job. In many cases, the construction workers must work to move heavy objects, which if improperly handled, can result in them falling. This risk has resulted in many a serious injury and sometimes the death of a construction worker.

A recent tragic accident has reinforced the reality of the inherent dangers of the construction trades. Authorities say a man was killed when a heavy beam fell on him at a construction project on the San Diego Freeway. The accident occurred earlier this month at around 2:30 a.m. while workers were attempting to move a 3,000-pound beam from a truck. For reasons that officials say are not yet clear, the beam fell onto the man, killing him instantly.

California's Division of Occupational Safety and Health, Cal/OSHA, has initiated an investigation into the accident. The company that the victim worked for has also commenced its own investigation. It is unclear at this time when either investigation will be completed or what actions may be taken based on the findings. One thing that is known is that construction at the site was halted pending a safety review by the contractor.

Accident investigations regarding the injury or death of a construction worker can be beneficial for several reasons. First, the investigation typically documents what occurred and how it happened. These findings may help the company in ensuring that such an accident never happens again. Cal/OSHA also has the authority to issue fines for safety violations. Further, workers' compensation death benefits are designed to assist the victim's family in recovering financially from the loss by providing funds for funeral expenses and related costs as well as, perhaps, for the lost income of the deceased employee.

Source: Culver City Patch, "UPDATE: 405 Fwy. Construction Worker Killed," Meredith Skrzypczak, Oct. 11, 2012

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The Law Office of Gary C. Nelson
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