While most employees take every reasonable measure to protect the safety of their employees, accidents can still happen. A workplace accident can range from minor to deadly. For many workers, an injury can leave them with reduced ability to work and/or with expensive medical bills. Fortunately, states such as Illinois have laws in place to help workers who are hurt on the job. A recent tragedy has likely left several employees and their families concerned about the financial toll the accident will take.
The accident occurred at International Nutrition, a company that makes food supplements for livestock. Currently, reports about the incident seem somewhat in conflict. Some witnesses report that there was an explosion that caused the building to collapse, while others believe the explosion was caused by the collapse. Two workers were killed and 17 injured. Of those 17, 10 required hospital treatment.
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration started an investigation into the incident to determine if it was a structural problem or dust explosion, or some combination of the two. Officials warn that it could take up to six months to complete the investigation. The goal is to determine the cause of the accident and if any safety standards were violated.
While knowing the cause of the workplace accident may create some closure for the families of the two deceased men and can help prevent similar incidents in the future, the injured workers and the families of the deceased likely have serious financial concerns. There will be funeral costs, medical bills and lost wages as a result. In Illinois, workers’ compensation benefits can help the victims (and the surviving family members of fatal accident victims) of such an accident with the expenses incurred as a result. However, without first-hand experience with the process, obtaining full compensation may be lengthy and complicated.
Source: ABC News, OSHA Seeking Cause of Omaha Industrial Accident, Margery A. Beck, Jan. 22, 2014