Fatal Construction Site Accident in Edwardsville

The construction industry is known to be one of the most dangerous for workers, resulting in a high job fatality rate.

A large commercial warehouse in Edwardsville was the site of a recent fatal accident. The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported that construction was underway at the warehouse when a crane boom hit and crushed a worker. The 31-year-old man was pronounced dead at the scene. An investigation of the accident is underway by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration.

Not a Unique Situation

Sadly, the incident in Edwardsville is not uncommon for people in the construction industry. Catastrophic injuries and even death occur at higher rates in construction jobs than in many other lines of work. According to the U.S. Department of Labor Bureau of Labor Statistics, there were 146 workplace fatalities in Illinois in 2012. Of those 16 were recorded in the construction sector.

Many factors can impact an accident on a construction site. However, there are four causes so common that OSHA refers to them as the fatal four. These include falls, trips and slips as one, entrapment and electrocutions as two more, and being struck by objects is the fourth. Many a construction worker has been killed or injured in a workplace accident that arose from one of these situations. Of the 16 construction site fatalities in Illinois in 2012, seven were attributed to falls, trips or slips — the No. 1 cause of such fatalities nationwide.

A Look at Stories Around the Region

A quick scan of news headlines reveals the widespread dangers that construction workers face. A story published by WCPO.com provided details about an excavation worker who fell into a trench at a job site in Indiana. The side of the trench caved in, trapping him. According to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, it took a team of 85 rescue workers a total of five hours to free the man. He sustained a punctured lung and broken bones as a result. The accident is said to be under investigation.

In Kentucky on a bridge project work site, another construction worker fell an estimated 20 to 30 feet. The WKYT.com report noted that rescuers were amazed he survived. The man was airlifted to a hospital for treatment. It is unknown whether or not an investigation will take place.

Important Information for Workers and Family Members

The risk of construction site accidents is a reality. When these incidents happen, ensuring that proper help such as workers' compensation is received is a must. Getting assistance from a lawyer when seeking compensation can be a valuable way of making sure the right level of help is received.

Keywords: construction, injury, workers' compensation