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Noncompliance of safety rules can cause construction accidents

Two deaths in one day -- only hours apart -- come at a time when there are calls for stricter safety regulations in the building industry. However, looking at the circumstances surrounding these construction accidents, it seems the calls should be for more compliance with existing safety regulations. Two construction workers died in New York on a recent Thursday.

The first accident happened when a 43-year-old worker lost his balance and fell from the 29th floor of a luxury condo under construction. The victim landed on the platform of a scaffolding structure that was erected above the sidewalk. According to firefighters who were at the scene, the man wore a fall harness but neglected to clip it into a secure anchor point.

Only hours later, emergency workers rushed to a scene of another construction accident. This time, two construction workers fell from a bucket lift which was at third-floor level. One employee, a 45-year-old man, did not survive the fall. Reportedly, witnesses said these workers also wore fall prevention equipment, but it appears their lanyards were also not secured.

Even if New York building authorities enact stricter safety regulations, as long as compliance is not enforced, construction accidents will claim lives. Fortunately, the surviving family members can pursue financial relief through the workers' compensation insurance system. They can claim death benefits to cover the costs of end-of-life arrangements. Wage-replacement packages are typically also included in the benefits to assist with day-to-day living expenses in the difficult time after the deaths of loved ones. The lost income compensation will be based on the deceased worker's basic wages prior to the death.

Source: NBC New York, "2 Construction Workers Die in Separate Accidents Hours Apart in Manhattan: DOB", Greg Cergol, Checkey Beckford, Sept. 21, 2017

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