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Workers' compensation: Most common causes of construction deaths

The number of people killed while completing their job responsibilities has drastically fallen over the course of the last several decades. Even with increased standards and improved technologies, however, workplace accidents resulting in fatalities still occur. While family of the victims of fatal accidents in Massachusetts may be entitled to workers' compensation, many need additional help to ensure fair treatment.

While a workplace fatality can occur in any occupation, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration claims that 828 fatalities in 2013 occurred in the construction industry. This number represents 20 percent of all fatalities in that year. These accidents are caused by a variety of reasons; however, there are four main leading causes that represent over half of fatalities.

The most prominent cause is falls. Over 300 people were killed by a construction site fall in 2013. Because employers must often work at great heights on scaffolding or ladders, OSHA requires employees to provide safety gear to help prevent falls. The next leading cause results from being struck from a falling object -- an incident that OSHA also attempts to prevent by requiring certain structures to be erected or built to catch falling objects or prevent them from falling. Electrocutions and getting pinned by equipment are also dangers workers face.  

Unfortunately, even with the regulations that OSHA has in place to protect construction workers, workplace accidents still happen. While families in Massachusetts are often protected from the financial ramifications of an unexpected loss through workers' compensation benefits, they often find the process overwhelming while grieving. Because benefits must be requested in a timely manner, many seek the help of an experienced professional to help them with the process.

Source: Findlaw, "Construction's Top 'Fatal 4' Workplace Injuries", Le Trinh, Esq., Accessed on May 15, 2016

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