According to authorities, masonry work collapsed inside a New Jersey restaurant, killing one construction worker and seriously injuring another. The incident took place around 9 a.m. in downtown Maplewood on May 30. The collapse occurred from the first floor down to the basement. At the time of the incident, three construction workers were installing a staircase, officials said.
One of the workers died at the scene. A second worker suffered non-life-threatening injuries and was transported to the hospital for treatment. The third worker was not injured in the collapse. Police say that the worksite had been inspected recently and that the restaurant had obtained all of the proper permits to have the work done. The family of the worker who was killed may be eligible for workers’ compensation.
In this news story, the restaurant appears to followed proper procedures by getting permits and having the work site inspected. However, workplace accidents can still occur in spite of an employer’s attempts to ensure the safety of its workers. If a worker is killed on the job, his or her family may be entitled to workers’ compensation regardless of whether the employer was at fault for the workplace accident. One important note is that if a plaintiff accepts an employer’s offer of worker’s compensation, he or she may not seek future compensation through a wrongful death or personal injury lawsuit.
A personal injury attorney might explain the differences between workers’ compensation and personal injury suits. In addition, an attorney can advise a plaintiff regarding which type of compensation may be most appropriate. In most cases, a workers’ compensation case may be settled through negotiation. In the event that negotiations do not result in an adequate compensation offer, the case might be heard in civil court.
Source: NJ.com, “Internal collapse in Maplewood restaurant kills 1, injures 1“, Seth Augenstein, May 30, 2014