Ohio can proudly boast of its many championship-level sports teams, including football, baseball, basketball and volleyball at the high school, college and professional levels. You may take pride in your state’s accomplishments in agriculture, education, the performing arts and other areas of culture. However, one area in which you probably wish Ohio did not excel is in the rate of fatal construction accidents.
Nationwide, in 2014, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics counted 4,679 workplace injuries resulting in death. This figure is 2 percent higher than the national average for the previous year. If you break that down, it means that every day, 13 people leave for work and never come home.
Too close to home
For the second year in a row, the number of workplace fatalities in Ohio increased. Construction was the industry that saw the greatest increase at 21 percent. Nationally, construction worker accidents rose by only 9 percent.
If you work construction, chances are very good that someone you know has been injured or even killed in a tragic accident over the past year. Maybe you were the one injured.
The causes of so many accidents
Representatives from an Ohio branch of the Occupational Safety and Health Administration explained that the new injury data guidelines require companies to report any workplace accident that results in amputation, hospitalization or eye loss. Because of these new expanded rules, injury reports have overrun the OSHA offices.
OSHA blames the rise in injuries and fatalities on a number of factors:
- People on the job are not paying attention to safety protocol.
- Workers are not putting their training into practice.
- Construction workers are younger with less experience on the job.
- Strained and overworked office staffs do not have resources for more frequent safety inspections.
When subcontractors or heavy equipment is involved in a construction project, the odds increase that you will be injured.
Where to turn if you are injured
Whether you were hurt in a fall from a ladder or high surface, by a falling object, or while using heavy machinery, your injury may prevent you from doing the job you need to do to support your family and pay your bills. You are entitled to receive workers’ compensation to cover your medical bills and lost wages.
If a third party (a subcontractor, scaffold manufacturer, delivery driver, etc.) caused your accident, you may be entitled to additional benefits through a personal injury claim. By contacting an attorney who will put his or her energy into your representation, you can be assured that every resource will be investigated to provide you with the support you need for your recovery.