A construction worker in another state recently suffered serious injuries while completing a project for a major metropolitan police force. In an apparent slip and fall work accident, the man tumbled 12 feet down an empty elevator shaft. Rescue teams managed to lift the worker from the shaft in a special basket designed for that purpose, but the worker still had serious injuries and went to the hospital for treatment.
While details are still sketchy as to why the man fell in to the elevator shaft, work accidents such as these in all likelihood occur more frequently at building construction sites in Arizona and elsewhere. This is because in the course of constructing a building, workers may have to build around gaping holes in order to complete the project properly. The holes, although necessary for the construction, create what some might describe as an unavoidable safety hazard.
This case therefore may demonstrate the importance of an employer’s properly training its employees. No one expects an employer to be able to eradicate all dangers from a construction site. What an employer can do, however, is ensure that its workers have the right education and training to help them avoid such accidents. Moreover, when possible, an employer should have ample and visible warnings of a safety hazard like a large drop off at a building construction site.
Had this case happened in Arizona, this worker would likely have the right to receive workers’ compensation benefits. Workers’ compensation benefits ma include payment for lost income and medical expenses.
Source: New York Daily News, “Construction worker falls 12 feet down elevator shaft a police academy site,” Thomas Tracy, Jan. 23, 2013