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Jerome, Gibson, Stewart, Stevenson, Engle & Runbeck, P.C.
Helping Injured Workers In Arizona Since 1973

Building collapse, falling debris kills worker, injures another

Old buildings in Arizona sometimes have to be torn down, and workers experienced in demolition will normally handle such a project. While in today's world the destruction of a building may seem to be a relatively simple matter, in fact it presents considerable safety hazards to those who complete the project, and serious work accidents can happen as a result.

In another state, two workers dismantling an old coal power plant suffered serious injuries when a portion of the building collapsed in the process, causing the workers to fall about 40 fett. The partial collapse also rained down a shower of falling debris on the workers. One worker died from his injuries after being pinned amidst the fallen rubble. The other worker escaped, and rescuers transported him to a nearby hospital.

The collapse also hampered the rescue effort. Because of the way the building collapsed, rescuers were unable to enter the building until approximately three hours after police received the initial emergency call.

What caused this accident is not entirely clear. The owners of the building that collapsed seem to have originally wanted to find a buyer who would re-develop it. With no buyer forthcoming, however, the owners slated the building for demolition.

Even if an error on the part of these workers caused the collapse, however, they or their families would still be eligible for workers' compensation had this accident happened in Arizona. With its no-fault system, Arizona law allows any employee injured in connection with his or her work to receive fair compensation for his or her injuries. This compensation can include reimbursement for medical expenses and lost income. Families of workers who die from work accidents may also get compensation for lost income and for funeral expenses.

Source: Amarillo Globe-News, "Worker killed in Pampa building collapse," Mollie Bryant, Feb. 11, 2013

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