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Worker suffers spine injury after 13-foot fall into trench

In a recent investigation by OSHA, the owners of a Missouri construction company were found to have allegedly endangered the lives of construction workers in their employ. Employers are obliged to maintain strict safety regulations as prescribed by OSHA. This includes the work environment at construction sites, along with job-related protection for each worker.The OSHA investigation followed an accident where a construction worker at a sewer installation suffered a spine injury.

OSHA alleges that the company failed to provide proper training for workers who were installing a sewer system at a Fenton construction project. It was reported that a worker fell into a trench that was 13 feet deep after being knocked over by a sewer pipe load that was partially suspended. The worker suffered a fractured vertebra in the fall, and two more workers who were reportedly at work in the trench at the time were not injured.

OSHA also determined that the company failed to provide the workers with head protection and expected them to use equipment that was damaged. In addition, the company disregarded safety regulations by letting the workers operate closer than ten feet from power lines that were energized. All these violations provided the perfect conditions for workplace injuries and fatalities.

When a Missouri construction worker has suffered a spine injury, his or her enjoyment of life could be affected forever. This type of injury can prevent an individual from working again, and it can often cause constant pain that can linger for a lifetime. Workers who are covered by the workers’ compensation insurance fund are entitled to file a claim for benefits. The fund typically reimburses injured workers for medical expenses and lost wages during the recovery period. In the event of long-term or permanent disability, additional compensation may be considered.

Source: ksdk.com, "OSHA: Construction company endangered workers", Allison Sylte, June 10, 2014

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