As Florida residents may know, construction worker accidents are not uncommon, and many are caused by errors involving cranes. Of all construction worker deaths caused by crane-related accidents, data emerged in a report by the Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries on the most common type of crane and specific injuries.
Thirty-two percent of crane-related deaths resulted from electrocution after a part of the crane came into contact with power lines. Seventy-one percent occurred with mobile cranes. Twenty-one percent of deaths were caused by the crane collapsing, and 18 percent were attributed to a worker being hit by either the crane jib or boom.
Between 1992 and 2006, 307 deaths were recorded in relation to cranes. About fifty-nine deaths were caused by a worker being hit by a crane jib or fallen boom, and 48 percent occurred while the worker was taking apart the boom. Inadequate support during this process was a key factor. Workers lengthening the boom accounted for 12 percent of deaths. Others in this category were fatally struck by a swinging boom.
Collapses resulting in 20 percent of fatal accidents were caused by icy conditions on the work site and uneven or unstable surfaces where the crane was located. Sixteen percent were caused by overloading, eight percent because the load shifted. The CFOI concluded that lack of training and safety precautions might be involved.
A family who has lost a loved one due to a construction accidents may find themselves faced with medical and funeral expenses, as well as the loss of that individual’s financial support. It may be advisable to speak with an attorney who may investigate accident reports and consult with experts to determine fault. Reviewing workers’ compensation death benefits or filing a lawsuit based on negligence may assist the family in recovering damages.