The very nature of accidents is that they cannot be predicted. Workplace accidents in particular can happen anytime, anywhere. However, accidents can be prepared for, and Illinois and other states have instituted workers’ compensation benefit laws to do just that. That is, they prepare employers and employees for the inevitable, so that the employee does not needlessly suffer financially for an injury caused during the course of employment.

Unfortunately, injuries caused by workplace accidents can sometimes be fatal, especially on construction sites. That was the case with an incident that happened in Chicago’s south side last month. On that Wednesday morning, a construction worker was killed while working on the demolition of a parking garage located at 11 E. 79th Street.

Initial reports were unclear as to whether a concrete beam or wall fell on the worker, and the cause of the accident was unknown. However, the U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) is looking into the incident that tragically ended the worker’s life. It expects the investigation to last for an indeterminate but potentially lengthy amount of time.

As OSHA conducts its investigation, the family of the construction worker may well benefit from consulting with an experienced Illinois attorney over their tragic loss. Workers’ compensation benefits are often available regardless of fault, and here the benefits may be able to cover the family’s funeral expenses and make up for the worker’s lost wages. An attorney may be able to assist with filling out the necessary forms to collect the benefits during this difficult time, and with ensuring the family receives the maximum benefit possible.

Source: The NBC Chicago, “Worker Killed by Falling Concrete Beam,” Nov. 16, 2011