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Law Offices of Bo Katzakian

Worker fatally injured on the job, struck by excavator bucket

Construction workers in California have the right to safe workplace environments. This puts an enormous responsibility on the shoulders of construction company owners because of the diverse activities that take place on construction sites. The California Division of Occupational Safety and Health Administration provide safety regulations for every aspect of construction, and compliance may protect workers from being killed or injured on the job.

Unfortunately, some employers fail to provide adequate training for operators of excavation equipment. An improperly trained operator on a piece of mechanical equipment can threaten the lives of other workers. A young worker on a San Jose construction site recently lost his life in a workplace accident that involved an excavator.

Fire officials were reportedly called to the site on a recent Tuesday morning and found the worker deceased. No official details were made available, but witnesses reported that the worker was struck by the bucket of an excavator that was swung in his direction. An investigation by Cal/OSHA and the Santa Clara County Sheriff's Office was launched to determine or whether safety violations caused the young worker's death. In accordance with their policies, law enforcement personnel treated the accident site as a crime scene pending a formal conclusion that the death was an accident.

Regardless of what led to the worker's death, the fact that he was fatally injured on the job entitles his family to pursue financial relief to assist with end-of-life expenses and other financial losses. Covered dependents may claim death benefits through the workers' compensation insurance program. In addition to compensation to cover a funeral and burial, the insurance fund typically also provides a financial package to assist the surviving family members with day-to-day living expenses.

Source: CBS SF Bay Area, "Worker Killed By Excavator At San Jose Construction Site", Oct. 6, 2015

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