It is common knowledge that the construction industry is fraught with workplace hazards, however no one ever expects that they will lose a loved one in a construction site accident. While workers’ compensation covers most construction site accidents that are sustained by employees, there are some instances in which a wrongful death action is appropriate; for example, if a construction worker’s death is caused by a defective tool or piece of equipment, or due to unsafe conditions at a worksite not controlled by their employer, or in a motor vehicle accident caused by another driver’s negligence. These fatal injuries could lead to a wrongful death claim.
Fatal construction site accidents
According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), the construction industry has a “fatal four” most frequent causes of death. In 2015, out of 4,379 worker fatalities in private industry, 937 of those (or 21.4%) were in the construction industry. These “fatal four” types of accidents were responsible for more than half (64.2%) of construction worker deaths in 2015 per the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).
- Falls (38.8%) A fatality map shows where a fatality from a fall occurred and the cause of the accident.
- Struck by an object (9.6%)
- Electrocutions (8.6%)
- Caught-in/between equipment, objects, struck, crushed in or by equipment or materials (7.2%)
OSHA estimates that eliminating the fatal four might save 602 workers’ lives in the U.S. each year.
What damages are available in an Oklahoma wrongful death lawsuit?
The spouse or immediate family members of a worker who perished in a construction site accident may file a wrongful death action against the at-fault party. A successful wrongful death claim will allow the deceased’s loved ones to recover damages suffered due to their loss, however it must be filed within two years of the date of death.
Immediate family may be able to recover medical expenses, funeral and burial expenses, pain and suffering, loss of consortium for spouses and lost wages. They may also be able to recover for their grief and any future loss of support
When a loved one dies in a construction accident it can be a painful and frustrating loss for the family because the accident was likely preventable. It can be perilous to attempt to work with the defendant’s insurance company without a strong legal advocate on your side to make sure that you receive the compensation that you deserve for your losses. A compassionate wrongful death attorney from Stipe Law Firm in Oklahoma can advise you on how to proceed.
Getting the news that you have lost a loved one in a construction site accident can be devastating. When you are ready to recover compensation for your loss, the compassionate wrongful death attorneys from Stipe Law Firm will get the results you are looking for. You are invited to contact us or call (918) 505-7741 today for a free consultation in our McAlester office. We serve families throughout Oklahoma.