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The Top Four Causes of Construction Worker Deaths

by | Feb 19, 2020 | Construction Accidents, Workers' Compensation, Workplace Injuries

It seems that there is always construction work going on in New York City. Whether it is renovating a building or fixing our streets it goes without saying that construction work is incredibly important. However, construction work can also be very dangerous. The following are the top four causes of private sector construction worker deaths in 2018 according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

  • Falls: 33.5 percent of construction worker deaths were due to falls
  • Struck by object: 11.1 percent of construction worker deaths were due to being struck by an object
  • Electrocutions: 8.5 percent of construction worker deaths were due to electrocutions
  • Caught-in/between: 5.5 percent of construction worker deaths were due to being caught-in/between objects, collapsing structures, materials or equipment

It is reported by the BLS that if these “Fatal Four” causes of construction worker deaths were eliminated, it could save 591 lives annually. This is significant, as one in five worker deaths in 2018 were in the construction industry.

An overview of workers’ compensation death benefits

When construction workers are killed on-the-job, they leave behind families that depended on the income they brought in to make ends meet. These families often face significant financial hardship due to such deaths, especially if the construction worker was the main income-earner for the family. Families should know, however, that depending on the circumstances, it may be possible for them to pursue workers’ compensation death benefits.

In New York, if a worker passes away due to an injury that is considered to be compensable, that worker’s spouse and/or minor children may receive two-thirds of the amount of income the deceased worker brought in each week on average in the year he or she died. However, it is important to note that these benefits cannot go over the weekly maximum, as set by the Workers Compensation Board.

Seeking compensation following a construction site death

It is important that the families of those killed in construction accidents get the compensation they deserve. This is true even if workers are being paid “under the table.” Employers may try to avoid paying benefits by hushing up the incident. This is why it is important that construction workers injured on the job or their families in the event of a death work with an attorney in pursuing workers’ compensation benefits.

Attorneys understand the workers’ compensation system in New York and will fight for injured workers. Attorneys can provide information and assist those seeking workers’ compensation benefits. Navigating the workers’ compensation system alone can be daunting and confusing. Fortunately, attorneys are available to give their clients the personalized attention they deserve as they pursue their claim for benefits.