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One person dies, one suffers construction injuries after fall


Construction workers are needed to build all types of structures. Unfortunately, construction sites often contain many dangerous elements, with heights being one of the most common ones. A fall from multiple stories can cause serious injuries or even death. Two workers were recently involved in a fall while working on a construction site in the Sunnyside area of Queens. One man died, while the other survived his construction injuries.

The fatal accident happened on the morning of June 5. A crew was working on building a new school on 45th Street when a worker fell down an elevator shaft. He fell from the fifth story of the six-story building. The debris from the fall injured a man who was on the fourth floor.

The men were transported to Elmhurst Hospital to be treated for their injuries. The man who fell died on the way to the medical center. The condition of other man has stabilized and he is expected to survive.

Unfortunately, construction accidents are all too common. One of the main reasons for this is the lack of safety precautions and training. About 90 percent of construction companies employ a small number of workers, which means that most lack a formal safety program.

When an employee dies in the workplace, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration will likely investigate the accident to determine liability. Was it the man's fault for falling down the shaft or should the company be blamed for not doing enough to protect its employees? The injured worker will likely receive workers' compensation benefits, but what about the family of the deceased worker? They might be able to sue for damages if the company is held liable.

Source: The Queens Courier, "Worker killed in Sunnyside elevator shaft fall," Cristabelle Tumola, June 5, 2014

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